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"Blackface" and "Plexi" in one amp head?

macrofor

Macro
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
401
I think some guys oversimplify the term “ fender cleans.” To me there are some very good amp makers doing the True fender BF sound and feel, and a Lot more that fall short. The bounce, shimmer, chalkiness and upper frequency detail is not there in the latter group - it’s just a clean tone . My Redplate Magica or any Friedman that I tried don’t feel or sound like my Vibrolux Or Pro reverb, but my Louis electric, Bruno and two Rock did. I often wonder how much comp drift has to do wth how my vintage Fenders and Marshalls sound, and what will today’s amps sound like 40-50 yrs from now.

for me I like the Two rock 10th anniversary . The gain side is less Marshall But the Xotic SL driv gets me close.
 

ducker 1

Member
Messages
2,309
That's only true for some BF Fender amps. Exceptions: Twin Reverbs have middle tone control knobs on both channels, Super Reverbs have tone control on 'VIBRATO' channel, etc.
oops forgot about the twin. the last 2 Fenders I owned were a Bandmaster and a Deluxe
 

teleluvver

Member
Messages
1,543
For the past several years, I have been after the same thing as the OP. I have owned many, many blackface and tweed Fenders, as well as a ‘78 JMP, so I know the sounds well. A couple of years ago, I tried a Redplate Magica 1x12 combo and was shocked to learn that a modern channel switcher can, in fact, get the Marshall crunch and the blackface clean. HOWEVER, I found that it could not do both equally well through one speaker. The amp came with a British-type Greenback design, and the Marshall side killed through it, but the Fender side just wasn’t there. Then I ran the amp out to one of my old Oxford speakers, and suddenly it was giving me some of the best blackface cleans ever; and this coming from el34 power tubes. And guess what? The Marshall side now sounded like garbage through the scooped American speaker.

Also, I tried for years to get great sounds from OD pedals into the Fenders. It’s decent and acceptable, but not the best it can be. I tried pretty much every cheap and expensive name brand and boutique OD pedal, with varying degrees of mids, and it has never been as good as when running through a British-type of speaker. I’ve heard all of the discussions about running pedals with mids into scooped speakers and all that, and while decent sounds can be had, my experience is that the beautiful, scooped cleans of an American speaker tend to fight against the mids required in a Marshall crunch, whether that crunch is coming from the amp or from a pedal.
The moral of my story: speakers matter more than I ever imagined.
 
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LaXu

Member
Messages
5,842
For the past several years, I have been after the same thing as the OP. I have owned many, many blackface and tweed Fenders, as well as a ‘78 JMP, so I know the sounds well. A couple of years ago, I tried a Redplate Magica and was shocked to learn that a modern channel switcher combo can, in fact, get the Marshall crunch and the blackface clean. HOWEVER, I found that it could not do both equally well through one speaker. The amp came with a British-type Greenback design, and the Marshall side killed through it, but the Fender side just wasn’t there. Then I ran the amp out to one of my old Oxford speakers, and suddenly it was giving me some of the best blackface cleans ever; and this coming from el84 power tubes. And guess what? The Marshall side now sounded like garbage through the scooped American speaker.

Also, I tried for years to get great sounds from OD pedals into the Fenders. It’s decent and acceptable, but not the best it can be. I tried pretty much every cheap and expensive name brand and boutique OD pedal, with varying degrees of mids, and it has never been as good as when running through a British-type of speaker. I’ve heard all of the discussions about running pedals with mids into scooped speakers and all that, and while decent sounds can be had, my experience is that the beautiful, scooped cleans of an American speaker tend to fight against the mids required in a Marshall crunch, whether that crunch is coming from the amp or from a pedal.
The moral of my story: speakers matter more than I ever imagined
I agree with this assessment. I play my Bogner GF45 SL through a closed back 4x10 with 10" Greenbacks. Sounds great on both channels, but if you insist on having Blackface cleans it will come down to speakers. I have actually tried running modeled preamps of Blackface Fenders and Marshall amps from my Helix into the GF45 poweramp and guess what, they don't sound significantly different to the built in preamps. So on that front you could say that yeah, it has a Blackface clean and a Marshall overdrive. But then you are faced with the speaker situation.

You would need a footswitchable, preferably MIDI controllable cabinet switcher to get the "ideal" situation for both cleans and overdrive. Switch to clean and the cab used is for example a 2x12 with Jensens. Switch to overdrive and it goes into a 4x12 with Greenbacks. I don't know if such a product exists on the market and it's most certainly not going to be cheap. Plus it would be a lot of gear to haul but fun at home or studio.
 

SirJuxtable

Member
Messages
157
Anybody try a channel switching amp with a cab with half Jensens and half Greenbacks or similar? Try to get the best of both worlds that way?
 

macrofor

Macro
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
401
I’m sure guys have done it with modelers, the Axe FX, fractal or similar. When you literally call up a fender bf clean, theN a Marshall OD patch, how does it sound coming through their flat eq speaker/ monitor? The speaker is part of the sound.
 

lenster

Member
Messages
949
Fender supersonic does it for me. Fender Cleans, bass man grind thru Van Halen.
Sorry to derail OP question. But i was reading thru your responses in one the SV20 threads. How do you compare the SV20 & the Supersonic? I have the 22 & keen on the SV20, but can't really have both.
 

DJ_61

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,279
If you can spend a little more, the Bogner Goldfinger is also a good alternative. One of the sweetest clean platforms I have heard, and a nice Marshall gain channel. The GF Superlead gets a lot of raves for the added '77 mode, but I think any of them would deliver what you want.


The OP says he doesn’t like the “Bogner sound” whatever that is... The Goldfinger is a phenomenal amp though. I see his cleans as more Marshally than Fendery. A bit thicker in the mids which is great for guitar.
 

G34RSLU7

Member
Messages
1,995
The OP says he doesn’t like the “Bogner sound” whatever that is... The Goldfinger is a phenomenal amp though. I see his cleans as more Marshally than Fendery. A bit thicker in the mids which is great for guitar.
i just have never heard a bogner that i liked, they all sound very hi-fi to me, which is how i would describe the bogner sound, ymmv
 

skylabfilmpop

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
551
Both of those sounds are power amp driven tones, I don’t think you’ll do much better than grabbing a late 60s Bassman head, having a good tech (Blankenship, Dixon, Webb) dial it up and add a little guitar favoring tweak to it. Add overdrive, add reverb pedal, you’re set. My Blankenship/Divided by13 modded 68 Bassman eats my fantastic sounding Park 75 for lunch... they are one of the last great amp values out there.
 

NatGardner

Member
Messages
338
Sorry to derail OP question. But i was reading thru your responses in one the SV20 threads. How do you compare the SV20 & the Supersonic? I have the 22 & keen on the SV20, but can't really have both.
Two different tools imo. The 22 is what I play in wedding bands and can cover Jazz standards, pop thru GnR and the sv20 nails classic rock. The sv20 doesn't have the pure clean headroom that I need for certain events. I have both, but I find I can pull off any song with the 22. I prefer to use the SV20 for classic rock gigs tho. It inspires me and I interact with my pickup selector and guitar knobs more than I do with a multi channel amp.
 

Blanket Jackson

is Tio's favorite
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
15,688
The OP says he doesn’t like the “Bogner sound” whatever that is...
Yeah, I realized that afterward, but for me the GF kind of sits tonally a little outside of the standard Bogner sound

The Goldfinger is a phenomenal amp though. I see his cleans as more Marshally than Fendery. A bit thicker in the mids which is great for guitar.
I tend to think of the cleans as a higher headroom tweed sound, which is to say the same core DNA as Marshall but a bit more sag and with some more tweakability.
GF really is a special amp.

i just have never heard a bogner that i liked, they all sound very hi-fi to me, which is how i would describe the bogner sound, ymmv
I would not think to characterize the GF as having a hi-fi sound. The clean sounds a bit like the Mesa LSS if you have heard one of those (high headroom tweed Deluxe), and the drive channel is very plexi / JCM800.
 
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jturner

Member
Messages
336
bogner alchemist. Clean channel = blackface.
clean channel with gain all the way up = plexi
The overdrive channel is traditional bogner high-gain into melt-your-face gain.
 

cmc2878

Member
Messages
646
I think the CAA (Suhr) OD-100 Classic or Classic Plus would be right up your alley. Landau used the Classic for years. There happens to be one on Reverb for 2k and free shipping right now.
 

prototype

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,580
imo the big question is gonna be speakers/cab. like a blackface fender through a closed back greenback cab doesn't sound so "fendery" and a plexi through an open cab with JBLs isn't all that "marshally" i think thats why people get so frustrated trying to get both sounds in one amp.... not only is it hard to get one amp that does both sounds its hard to get a cab that does both.

i would really ask yourself if maybe its better to just use two amps as a channel switcher a la eric johnson. its really not all that impractical, especially if you are used to 100 watt heads with a 4x12 cab. just figure out how much volume you need.

small stages/clubs/recording: - princeton or deluxe reverb and an 18 watter, DSL combo, origin, etc

medium sized venues: deluxe or pro reverb and a jtm45 bluesbreaker combo

no limit: twin or super reverb and 1959slp

other thing i would also consider is one of those hybrid open/close mesa cabs and load the closed side with greenbacks and the open half with jbls or something similar and run two heads into them with a head switcher. then you can use a plexi head and an old fender silverface head.
 

cmc2878

Member
Messages
646
imo the big question is gonna be speakers/cab. like a blackface fender through a closed back greenback cab doesn't sound so "fendery" and a plexi through an open cab with JBLs isn't all that "marshally" i think thats why people get so frustrated trying to get both sounds in one amp.... not only is it hard to get one amp that does both sounds its hard to get a cab that does both.

i would really ask yourself if maybe its better to just use two amps as a channel switcher a la eric johnson. its really not all that impractical, especially if you are used to 100 watt heads with a 4x12 cab. just figure out how much volume you need.

small stages/clubs/recording: - princeton or deluxe reverb and an 18 watter, DSL combo, origin, etc

medium sized venues: deluxe or pro reverb and a jtm45 bluesbreaker combo

no limit: twin or super reverb and 1959slp

other thing i would also consider is one of those hybrid open/close mesa cabs and load the closed side with greenbacks and the open half with jbls or something similar and run two heads into them with a head switcher. then you can use a plexi head and an old fender silverface head.
I think that’s a great point!

however, I do think there are speakers that can work well in both applications. Something like a G12-65 can be a nice bridgebetween the two sounds, and there are many people who like Greenbacks in a Princeton or Deluxe Reverb.

Something like a V30 or Blue...not so much.
 




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