Bad Cat Amps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by samuelson, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. samuelson

    samuelson Member

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    Is there anyone out there who owns a Bad Cat amp and would highly recommend the amp over a Lone Star or Dr. Z amp? I'm looking at all three to purchase and wonder if the extra money is worth the Bad Cat amp.
     
  2. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    Which model Bad Cat?

    wsaraceni and I can take this question. hahaha :BEER
     
  3. samuelson

    samuelson Member

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    since I like the AC30 sound I was looking at the Black Cat, but the Hot Cat 30R sounded so good
     
  4. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    If you're into that AC30 or Matchless DC30 sound, the Black Cat is amazing. Check my most recent thread on my Hot Cat purchase. If you love a bit of a more raunchy tone, you can't do better. The Hot Cat almost sounds like an EL84/EL34 mix sometimes, it's got a great chime.
     
  5. Shark Sandwich

    Shark Sandwich Member

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    I agree totally. The Hot Cat is capable of over the top gain, but I rarely crank up the gain. Most of the time I play with the gain around 9 or 930 on the dial. The secret with the Hot Cat is to use an aby pedal to combine the channels--that's where the best sounds lie in this amp, quite Vox-like with that crystal-edged distortion. I'm sure a Black Cat would get you there too with no problems since it has EL84s.
     
  6. flicker180

    flicker180 Member

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    The Cub offers a little bit of the AC30 jangle but definitely not on the same order at the Black Cat.
    dave
     
  7. agentcooper2001

    agentcooper2001 Member

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    the black cat is one of the best amps ever made. Definitely go with that one. I've had 5 Bad Cat's over the years and they all sound great.
     
  8. LSchefman

    LSchefman Member

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    Actually, IMHO all three amps you mention in your original post sound completely different, and it's more a case of what you want to hear than "better".

    I personally dig the Hot Cat, it's a great amp with pretty high gain, and interesting options to blend both channels. The clean channel is very rich and Vox-like, the gain channel is somewhat toward the Marshall end of things. Of the three, it suited my style of play, and is extremely well-made. So it has a sound that leans toward Brit. It's a hand-wired point to point style amp.

    The Lone Star is a more American Fender sound, but it's also their take on "boutique", and has Dumble-inspired leanings. It's got a ton of setup options and controls, too. Mesas are built very solidly, on printed circuit boards. They do a good job assembling these amps, and I think they use good components.

    The Dr. Z amps all sound different, and you'd really have to specify which one(s) you're thinking about. Z amps are also very well made. I believe Z uses hand wired tag boards, but I could be wrong, maybe they're point to point. In any event, they're pretty darn nice amps. If you want a rich-sounding, Vox type amp, it's hard to beat the Maz series, and the Route 66 also has a definite unique vibe that gets a lot of praise around here. Most of the Zs are single channel amps, but the 6545 is a channel switcher.
     
  9. B Vance

    B Vance Member

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    I'm a Black Cat guy. If you are interested in a detailed review, I'd be more than happy to hook you up with one by email. PM me and let me know.
     
  10. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    i agree with les to an extent. i think bad cat makes an amp that fits into tons of different tones. moreso than just the vox thing. i have yet to play an amp i like more than the bad cat line has. they all have something similar that feels amazing to me. plus, how can you not like that logo lighting up. Now, to say its better than a lonestar or a dr z is a lot harder. for me, id take a bad cat over either of those any day. the cleans on the bad cat are a definately more chimey and less fendery as the mesa is somewhat to me. the gain is smooth on the mesa and the bad cat can be smooth or edgy. the dr.z's i have played do not have as much gain at lower volumes but at volume the few i played were amazing amps without a doubt.
     
  11. gassyndrome

    gassyndrome Member

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    what about the little Mini Cat combo's? Anyone have any experience with that one?:dude
     
  12. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

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    The MiniCats have been a toss-up on TGP. Many claim they sound anemic and boxy, others love them. The are great for low-volume playing. I heard one with a harmonica at NAMM and loved it.
     
  13. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    i recently picked up a mini cat combo and i think a few things of it.

    the stock 10" speaker sounds very small and thin. I want to replace the speaker but am not sure what would be the best route to go. if i do replace the speaker to my liking ill make sure to post about it.

    also, for a low volume amp, the thing is absolutely horrible. It has a master volume, but man, this thing sounds great with the volume pumping. at bedroom volume you would definately need a pedal. i find i get better clean, medium gain tones, and high gain tones from my hot cat at those lower levels.

    cranked up a bit, i like it every bit as much as my hot cat. with a humbucker guitar and the volume to the point where it just starts to breakup, it gets an amazingly responsive and cool sound. for the price they sell for used, you can easily pick one up to try out. i always play it through another cabinet. Havent tried it with headphone out yet. maybe ill do that right now.
     
  14. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    forgot to add. the mini cat II is much better at lower volumes than the mini I. At higher volumes, to me, it would be a toss up, the mini II is much more versatile and has more gain on tap, but i found a sound i really love in the mini cat. havent played my hot cat in a few days since ive been noodling on it.
     
  15. SFLP

    SFLP Member

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    The Cub II R is an incredible amp and I prefer it to the Hot Cat because you get incredible overdrive and clean tones (I prefer the clean of the Cub to the Hot Cat). Also, the MV on Bad Cats works very well so you can get incredible tone at manageable volumes. The only downside to the Bad Cats are their weight (not a problem if you don't have to move it around a lot). The Trem Cat is worth a look as well because it wraps up so many good tones in one package.
     
  16. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    i also had the cub II head (not the R version) for clean tones, I agree that the cub had something special in it. It wasn't totally clean and the chords just seemed to fill themselves out. i considered this amp to have that extra swirl that so many talk about. i want all the bad cats personally, they are similar but different!!! i still say the classic cat is next for me. Unless i can find a cub at a great great price.
     
  17. B Vance

    B Vance Member

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    Samuelson,

    Check you PM and email.
     
  18. tele_disease

    tele_disease Member

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    I own and play regularly through both a 100w Lonestar and a Hot Cat 30.

    They are very different amps in terms of feel and tone. Having said that, both have their place, BUT, the Hot Cat clean or dirty has about three additional dimmensions and five steps up on the evolutionary chain of tone over the Lonestar.

    Play both and you may hear and feel what I am saying. Before I played a Hot Cat the Lonestar was outstanding. Now if just feels and sounds good (to a lighter touch) but is not in the same ball park tone wise as the Hot Cat.

    My 2cents ......................:)
     
  19. xdisciplex

    xdisciplex Member

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    i want a dr z maz 38. my brother has a prescription es that sounds really good.
     

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