Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by mbell75, Aug 18, 2019.
What I am saying is swearing a modern, reissue tube amp is the "real deal" and superior to any SS or digital amp just because it has tubes, while calling the non tube amps copies is absurd. The modern reissue tube amp is also a copy of the "real deal" original and doesn't sound anywhere as good. I already posted two videos showing that. Hell, the digital Tone Master Deluxe Reverb sounds closer to the 1967 DR than that reissue with the tubes does lol. Digital or tube, it doesn't matter. They are both copies of the "real deal" original.
There were days when internet trolls actually tried. Alas, those days are long gone and the entertainment value left with them.
But that's not the point. The "real deal" is simply a tube amp. Any decent tube amps. That's what digital and solid state versions are trying to reproduce. Are they often modeled after a specific model-year? Sure, but if you take 5 random 1967 Deluxe Reverbs, they will all sound different with the controls set the exact same. Now take one and change out the speaker, put new tubes in it, replace some of the old component with new ones, etc... and you will end up with an amp that sounds like a different model.
Most modelers aren't marketed as sounding EXACTLY like model x, y, or z, from a specific year. They simply make the claim that it sounds and feels just like a tube amp. Then they use one or several general amp models as essentially a guideline of what that particular model is designed to emulate. I've yet to see a modeler that claims to sound 100% like x, y, or z amp. The models they list are an approximation. But they do claim that it "sounds and feels like tubes", hence, that is why tube amps are the real deal.
Find me a tube amp that claims to have perfectly modeled a particular digital amp and we'll have something interesting to talk about.
Till then, digital is just looking for ways to sound and feel like the real thing.
Today all we have are lazy, shoddily-assembled copies of the original handwired trolls of yesteryear.
Thats why most modeling amps haven't been too great, they try to be a jack of all trades instead of just focusing on delivering one sound and you end up with cheap FRFR speakers. Thats why I think the new Tone Master amps will be game changers for digital modeling amps. First ones made by a top company thats modeled after only one amp and features quality speakers. We shall see.
Lets define some terms here - “Real Deal” and “Copy.
How much does a vintage 50 year old Twin Reverb sell for? What do you think the Tonemaster Twin will sell for 50 years from now? I predict that within a year we'll see Tonemaster Twins on the used market for $500.
Can't help myself - it's like trying to shake the flu.
(1) Who buys an amp to be iconic or superior? Well, maybe the folks at Sotheby's.
(2) cheap and modern have nothing to do with a country. I can buy home grown cheap and modern.
(3) The QC is much stricter today and there's plenty of road miles to speak for the reliability.
All of the modern amp builders design and voice their circuits using tubes that are currently available,
from reliable sources. Including NOS.
(4) Considering the materials used, and the mass production standards of the time, hand wired means nothing when talking about tube amps available in music stores back in the 50s, 60s, and 70s.
(5-6) Far superior cheap stuff OR average current Marshall and Fender. Pick one. Just checked Sweetwater for Marshall combos. Prices range between $100 and $3,000. They have 11 models between $100-$500 and 14 models between $500-$3K+.
A Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier sounds just like a Mesa Boogie Rectifier. The profiles I've played in a Kemper of one, along with the models in a Fractal are pretty darn good. Not the same, but they're getting there. Same goes for the Mark V, the JVM's, Friedmans, etc. The modeler/profiler is a different approach that brings with it different benefits and drawbacks.
Bottom line is, you put an original 60s Fender or Marshall with everything made in the US or the UK in front of guitar player alongside a modern reissue copy mostly made from cheap Asian parts, have them play both and ask them which they prefer, Im willing to bet the vast majority prefer the original "real deal" amps, not the reissue copies. Just look thru the comment sections of those videos I posted, most prefer the tone of the original amps. So again, modern reissue tube amps are just copies of the originals, just like digital and SS amps. There is nothing iconic, superior or magical about modern reissue tube amps with cheap, Asian made PCBs and tubes no matter how badly tube fanboys pretend them to be.
I glazed over everything else you said after this.
Tube feels different, and in some cases, better to a lot of people here.
So your digital vs tube vs vintage vs modern vs 50s California vs 2019 Malaysia..... whatever point is mute.
I'd wager that this is not nearly as cut and dried as you think if you make it a blind test. A big part of how people enjoy vintage gear is the knowledge that they are playing vintage gear. Our brains are funny things that will intentionally find things to like about the sound of gear we want to like.
Yep, just like the tube fanboy's brain will prefer the sound of the tube amp over anything else because he knows he's playing a tube amp. Most the blindfold tests with tube vs digital/SS, the players have no clue which is which. Put that guitar in a mix and the difference becomes even more negligible.
I really like vintage amps and I've gigged BF & SF Fenders mostly. Being honest, hearing my myself played back when I used a /13 or DrZ...sounded better than most of my vintage stuff.
FWIW, my experience with modern Fender amps hasn’t been too great.
Tried a BJ about 15 years ago and returned after a week. Sounded thin and cold. Maybe I never figured it how to dial it in.... lots of folks like them...
Had a Princeton RI for about a year. It was okay, but I kept trying different speakers... couldn’t seem to dial that one in either, and I definitely did not like the reverb.
Tried the 67 Custom Reverb Deluxe, the one with the silver face, and returned that after a week. Like the Princeton, I didn’t like the reverb and I couldn’t dial in a tone I really liked....
I have a Muchxs 5e3 that I absolutely love and I recently got a Supro Blues King that I like much more than the Fender RIs. Fantastic reverb and just plain better tone.
Guess it depends. I'd go for the EHX tung-sol tubes because they're hand made in Russia at an actual tube manufacturing plant that Mike Matthews very wisely bought. The workers there were building these units for far longer than EHX owned the factory, as well. Possibly the most experienced tube builders still in business.
This really depends on which style of music one is playing. If I'm playing rock or heavy rock, I much prefer modern tube amps. If I'm playing jazz or blues, I can go modern or vintage.
I wouldn't use a Twin to play Black Sabbath (without major pedal support, at least!) ... I might use a Mesa to play some jazz.
Of course, I believe the poor craftsman tends to blame his tools, too. I make the best with what I have and what I do, and buy better as budget and inclination allows.
By this logic, a Tesla is a copy of a 64 GTO which is a copy of a Model-T.
Of course it isn't. They each transport you, but do it in radically different ways.
I find this confusing.
I’ve owned numerous Deluxe Reverbs. Too many. It’s absurd. Probably closer to 10 than 5 if I’m honest.
SF, BF, Reissue.
They all sounded and played very much like the same amp, with subtle differences between them. Noise floor, headroom, EQ, dynamics. If I set the controls with my ears instead of my eyes, the differences got even more subtle. I’m pretty sure the biggest difference between them was the speaker.
The single “best” one for me was a DRRI that I sold I think out of boredom. Not my best move.