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Amp Advice Please!!! Mesa, Orange, Diamond
Old 22nd July 2010
  #1
Gear Head
 

Amp Advice Please!!! Mesa, Orange, Diamond

Hey Everyone,
Please give me your opinions on the following Heads I'm looking at, or any others I should check out, I'm going to have to drive 60 miles to play them, so I'm going to make a day out of it and try and decide.

Mesa Mark V
Orange Rockerverb 50
Diamond Nitrox or Phantom or Spitfire II
???

I've played Boogies for the last 13 years (although, I never really liked the rectifiers?)
I have a Nomad 100 right now (which I like, even though other people didn't, I think the 5 band EQ of the 100 watt model really makes the difference).

I also have a V-Twin Rackmount Pre-amp running though a Peavey Classic 50/50 Power Amp, that has an amazing sounding Crunch channel, but I'm not too fond of the Clean channel, so I might sell them or trade them in.

The music I play is somewhere between 90's Britpop and AFI, I guess?

Thanks!
Old 22nd July 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 
frans's Avatar
I have to say each of these are good and not knowing your cabs or guitars I'm not sure anyone but you could decide this. Any pedals you use? How many sounds do you need? More than the holy trinity of clean/crunch/full on? Playing live or in the studio?
Old 22nd July 2010
  #3
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by frans View Post
I have to say each of these are good and not knowing your cabs or guitars I'm not sure anyone but you could decide this. Any pedals you use? How many sounds do you need? More than the holy trinity of clean/crunch/full on? Playing live or in the studio?
I guess more Live, but also some studio.
I need it to have two channels with a good clean and a good crunch.
It would be nice to have a different sound than my Boogies, but then again, I also say it would be nice to not date blondes and then I start dating another blonde.

Cabs- I actually just have a couple old Peavey 4X12 cabs with metal grilles that I've been using forever and lived through everything.

Guitars-
Fender Tele Deluxe
Gibson Studio Les Paul
Gretsch Power Tenny

PedalBoard-

Old 22nd July 2010
  #4
Lives for gear
 
frans's Avatar
Your pedalboard looks sorted, good! IMHO the Orange has just one and a half sound and needs the right guitar paired to make it work and the Mesa is okay but overpriced (here in Europe....) still a decent amp. The Orange LOOKS good, btw. - which is a valid point for playing live. From your choice of pedals it looks to me you have your act together, so I keep adding tangential advice:

Have you ever considered different speakers in your 4x12"? (watch out for getting their impedances right, okay?) I have a 4x12" in the studio where I ripped out the original speakers and put in 4 different flavours. So wherever I put the mic I can audition a whole lot of voices. In the studio I can run the cab full or just as a 2x12".
Old 22nd July 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Darm's Avatar
 

Orange is the sound of Britpop, so I would go with it, wonderful clean sound and great controllable drive
Old 22nd July 2010
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
BasHermus's Avatar
 

Another amp used by Britpop bands is the Vox AC30.

If you want an amp that is capable of producing sounds somewhere between a Vox and a Fender the Peavey Delta Blues is a very good and cheap alternative (although I really don't like the sound of most of their amps).
Make sure the replace the tubes with good ones, and replace the speakers (I have the 2x10 version) with better ones (I used Weber alnico speakers).
That makes for a very good AC30 replacement (although the sound is slightly diffferent) without the price tag and the horrible maintenance problems.

From your list of amps:
-Never really liked the overdrive sounds of Mesas (too compressed for my taste; a bit plastic-like)
-I liked the orange, but went for a Matamp (original builders of Orange amps), because it's overdrive is less fuzzy (and they build it to your specifications)
-No experience with Diamond

As Frans mentioned, speakers do make a very big difference. As I really like my cleans to be very organic and warm sounding I avoid V30's (which are present in many 2x12 and 4x12 cabs) and prefer a combination of Greenbacks and G12H speakers.
Old 22nd July 2010
  #7
Gear Nut
 

how bout an axe-fx ultra?

another often overlooked one to check out is a marshall 410H (4 channel, 3 modes per channel, one of the better cleans in a marshall, does squeal a bit on the OD2/RED channel (microphonic valves?) but is pretty damn lovely nonetheless).
Old 22nd July 2010
  #8
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stacanova View Post
The music I play is somewhere between 90's Britpop and AFI, I guess?
Have you considered something like a Hughes & Kettner Duotone or Triamp? Really nice stuff. Kind of like a classic Marshall but cleaner, smoother, more modern. And flexible.

But any of those amps you listed will be good. Just spend some time with each and go with your gut.

I'm not a Mesa fan so personally I'd steer clear of those though.
Old 22nd July 2010
  #9
Lives for gear
 

If you go Orange, I'd go with the 30-watt rather than 50-watt.

It should fill any venue that doesn't mic your amp up (hardly any these days, PA is so cheap), and a 30-watt turned up sounds way better than a 50-watt turned down.
Old 22nd July 2010
  #10
Gear Head
 

Thanks everyone!
I thought about a Vox, I just didn't know if it would be versatile enough?
I know it does the "Vox" sound well.

Why do people hate on Mesa's so much?
Old 23rd July 2010
  #11
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stacanova View Post
Thanks everyone!
I thought about a Vox, I just didn't know if it would be versatile enough?
I know it does the "Vox" sound well.

Why do people hate on Mesa's so much?
Depends on the Mesa.. I've always been hot/cold on rectifiers - have heard some good ones, and lots that didn't do it for me. A lot of the fizzy, overdone nu-metal guitar sounds that annoy everyone - rectum-fryers.

Now, a Mark IV? NOW we're talking about a nice amp... haven't messed with a Mark V, but I think I'd like it better than a recto.
Old 23rd July 2010
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
bladelaw's Avatar
 

Taming the wild Mesa Rectifier is no task for teh cowardly, feint of heart, or ones lacking in patience.

However, should one learn thy enemy, and ultimately reign victorious over the mighty beast, much power will ye possess...
Old 23rd July 2010
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
BasHermus's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stacanova View Post
Thanks everyone!
I thought about a Vox, I just didn't know if it would be versatile enough?
I know it does the "Vox" sound well.

Why do people hate on Mesa's so much?
If you're referring to my post... I didn't mean to say that a Vox does the Vox-sound well (well... it should), but that a Peavey Delta Blues does the Vox-sound rather well.


Well I don't hate Mesas. They are very good amps, but just not for me. Maybe they are so overused that their sound has become too generic (especially in genres that really are not my cup of tea).
Old 23rd July 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Ozzy's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bladelaw View Post
Taming the wild Mesa Rectifier is no task for teh cowardly, feint of heart, or ones lacking in patience.

However, should one learn thy enemy, and ultimately reign victorious over the mighty beast, much power will ye possess...
Agreed!! You would have to prize my single rec from my cold, dead hands.
Old 23rd July 2010
  #15
Here for the gear
Mesas are fine. the Mark V is pretty decent. I found it to be one of the most versatile sounding amp on the market right now. Its not a 'spot on' amp but you would get close to sounds you like considering your pedal board is pretty decent. Then again the high gain part of it is to die for if you're one of those metal heads listening to pre-90's metallica, Lamb of God, Meshuggah OR you just like massive in-your-face sound. On the other hand, rectos are a Love/hate response from most people i know.

However if you only strictly play brit pop and not thinking of using it for anything else, i suggest either the Vox or a Matchless. Orange amps tend to mud up the mids as far as the ones i've tried. Try looking for a Ceriatone Matchless chieftain clone. Its pretty close to the real thing at a fraction of the original price. In addition to that if you're not a fan of fiddling around to much with the knobs, I'd suggest a TrainWreck liverpool clone. One most amazing gain stages i've heard ever. Of course an original would set you back $50,000 or so. If you're on a really tight budget, there's this new uk based company called Blackstar Amplification. Their Series One amps are all the rage right now.

I could be wrong but thats my 2cents.
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