Best Low-Watt Marshall (or clone)?

Craftmatic

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,835
Just got my first LP (Historic R0) in 30 years and wanted to take the Marshall plunge after being a Fender man my whole life. Looking for home use, low wattage with lots of the famous Marshall crunch at relatively low volumes. I only like tube/valve amps. I want that classic '60's - '70's sound.
 

re-animator

Senior Member
Messages
8,245
you definitely want to look into a 1974x (18 watter) clone with a greenback speaker. Its an excellent combination with a les paul. Gets you jimmy page thunder at relatively low volumes.... the good news is that its also probably the 2nd most often cloned vintage amp in history (after the tweed deluxe).

Try Ceriatone, and Trinity amps.... both provide kits or built amps, and the whole shebang will probably run around $1000.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,372
Reeves Custom 18
Suhr Badger
65 Amps London
Reinhardt
Category 5
Blankenship
Aiken

The are all based on the 18 watt Marshall circuit using
EL84's in the power section.

To get more of a JTM 45/Vox AC30 tone you'll be going up to 30 watts
some with 4XEL84's some with EL34's and KT 66's

On a super tight budget, the Ceriatone Marshall Circuit clones
are also well respected, all hand wired.

I would personally go with any of the above before overpaying
for a Chinese built Marshall.
 

Craftmatic

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,835
Reeves Custom 18
Suhr Badger
65 Amps London
Reinhardt
Category 5
Blankenship
Aiken

The are all based on the 18 watt Marshall circuit using
EL84's in the power section.

To get more of a JTM 45/Vox AC30 tone you'll be going up to 30 watts
some with 4XEL84's some with EL34's and KT 66's

On a super tight budget, the Ceriatone Marshall Circuit clones
are also well respected, all hand wired.

I would personally go with any of the above before overpaying
for a Chinese built Marshall.
If you don't mind me trying to save some time in Googleland, which are the lowest priced in that list? I know 65 Amps are pricey.
 

re-animator

Senior Member
Messages
8,245
all i know is in price vs. quality, reeves would be number 1. They're about $1500, but arguably the most solid amps ever built - which is not a marshall strong suit.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,372
I'd go for the Reeves, or Reinhardt or Blankenship but many many people are buying the Ceriatones on a budget.
 

Serious Poo

Powered by Coffee
Platinum Supporting Member
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6,658
Reinhardt and Fargen make my two favorite 18 watt style amps. Very flexible and great sounding.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,372
Saving you a Google :)
FEATURES
Handwired All-Tube Circuit
Single channel operation
Power Scale master volume control
High & Low inputs
Treble, Mid, Bass controls
Cut control
Gain control
Gain Boost switch
3 way bright/mid boost switch
Heyboer Transformers
Hand wired turret board construction
2ea EL-84 power tubes
3ea 12AX7 preamp tubes
Solid State rectifier
Two 1/4" speaker jacks
4,8,16 ohm impedance switch
100v, 120v, 230v

http://www.reevesamps.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=16&Itemid=43

PRICES AND DIMENSIONS
Custom 18 Head
$1599
26" (width) x 9" (height) x 8-1/4" (depth)
Custom 18 1x12 Combo
$1799
21.625" (width) x 21" (height) x 11.75" (depth)
Custom 18 2x12 Combo
$1939
27" (width) x 20.5" (height) x 11-3/8" (depth)
 

Craftmatic

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,835
Saving you a Google :)
FEATURES
Handwired All-Tube Circuit
Single channel operation
Power Scale master volume control
High & Low inputs
Treble, Mid, Bass controls
Cut control
Gain control
Gain Boost switch
3 way bright/mid boost switch
Heyboer Transformers
Hand wired turret board construction
2ea EL-84 power tubes
3ea 12AX7 preamp tubes
Solid State rectifier
Two 1/4" speaker jacks
4,8,16 ohm impedance switch
100v, 120v, 230v

http://www.reevesamps.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=16&Itemid=43

PRICES AND DIMENSIONS
Custom 18 Head
$1599
26" (width) x 9" (height) x 8-1/4" (depth)
Custom 18 1x12 Combo
$1799
21.625" (width) x 21" (height) x 11.75" (depth)
Custom 18 2x12 Combo
$1939
27" (width) x 20.5" (height) x 11-3/8" (depth)
Gee thanks! People are so much nicer hear than on the snobby Les Paul Forums.
 

Craftmatic

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,835
The Ceritone assembled "British" 18 Watt heads and combos are $1,000 less than the Fargen Mini Plex and the Reeves Custom 18. I'm sure there's a difference but I'm looking for simple and affordable.
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,372
Nik at Ceriatone has a lot of respect, but you also need to consider shipping costs from Malaysia.The added cost of options, the head cab or combo cab. Not a big deal but a consideration.
Nik does have a few authorized repair shops here if there is a warranty issue.

You also need to consider how much added value you'd place on a USA
built Reeves with long standing solid proven roadworthy build quality.
 

Craftmatic

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,835
Nik at Ceriatone has a lot of respect, but you also need to consider shipping costs from Malaysia.The added cost of options, the head cab or combo cab. Not a big deal but a consideration.
Nik does have a few authorized repair shops here if there is a warranty issue.

You also need to consider how much added value you'd place on a USA
built Reeves with long standing solid proven roadworthy build quality.
So you prefer the Reeves over the Fargen. Those are the 2 that I just checked out on the Web.
 

PlexiFuzz

I know karate. Voodoo, too.
Messages
9,659
I hope to answer Fargen Mini Plex MkII after I drive to Sacramento to pick mine up from Ben today ...
 

voojo

Member
Messages
3,418
The Fargen Mini Plex Mk2 is a great amp, you can swap tube types to try out different sounds. It comes with (2) EL34s, does all the classic Marshall tones. The head is well built and fairly compact. I can't say enough good things about my Mini Plex, huge bass response for it's wattage. It's powerscaled (as is the Reeves) so you can dial it down so your not tearing heads off. It can be very loud if you need it to. Great amp!!

Seth
 

voojo

Member
Messages
3,418
I hope to answer Fargen Mini Plex MkII after I drive to Sacramento to pick mine up from Ben today ...
I think you will love it BAN. While your there see if you can see my Mighty Plex Mk2, Ben said it should be done early next week and shipped. It's PURPLE! Ben said I am one of only two people right now to have the Mighty Plex MK2, he said it turned out so well that he is going to potentially offer it as a released model. Have fun!

Seth
 

FFTT

Member
Messages
28,372
Fargen is a good builder and the miniplex gets some great tones, but
you're limited on what you can do with 8-12 watts.
For studio and small venues mic'd you'll be OK, but it's going to be tough
with live drums unless you have good stage monitoring.
As far as tonal versatility for recording, the Fargen is very cool
due to the cathode biased tube swapping optons.

The Reeves Custom 18 with power scaling delivers a full 20 watts, but also
allows you to dime it down for home/studio playing.
This amp will make you happier when trying to cut through live drums
and still maintaining a reasonable degree of clean headroom.

If you're looking at Class A multi-tube amps for home and recording
also check out the Emery Sound Superbaby. Very popular in some high end studios.


I have no affiliation with any of these builders.

I just calls 'em as I see 'em.
 

samtheman

Member
Messages
2,256
I think you will love it BAN. While your there see if you can see my Mighty Plex Mk2, Ben said it should be done early next week and shipped. It's PURPLE! Ben said I am one of only two people right now to have the Mighty Plex MK2, he said it turned out so well that he is going to potentially offer it as a released model. Have fun!

Seth
Ben said me also at he ship it next week :RoCkIn and its a Mini Plex MkII 40watter, so is it Mighty Plex MkII ???

/sam
 




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