Blonde Bassman or JTM-45...which one do you prefer?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by dehughes, Jun 20, 2006.


Which amp to add to the mix....

  1. Blonde Bassman head/cab

  2. JTM-45 head/cab

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  1. dehughes

    dehughes Member

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    I'm going to build either a Blonde Bassman or a JTM-45 clone once I finish my current project (AC30ish). Which of those two amps do you think would be the better addition to an amp arsenal? I'll have an AC30ish amp, and a little Top Hat Club Royale, so either the Blonde Bassman or the JTM-45 would be different colors...
     
  2. gnugear

    gnugear Member

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    Boy that's a tough one. I've found new love for my blonde recently. I think the JTM45 sounds better with a Les Paul if that helps at all.

    If I want more rock, I go for my Superleads, but if I want more clean I tend to go all the way and opt for the Fender. I made the mistake of trying to gain out my blonde and didn't care for it that much (the Marshall did it way better).
     
  3. Mullet Kingdom

    Mullet Kingdom Senior Member

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    I'm usually a diehard fender guy, but I do love the sound of a JTM-45.
     
  4. Pedro58

    Pedro58 Supporting Member

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    Build both, sell the one you like least. And contact me when you do! :AOK
     
  5. Swarty

    Swarty Member

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    I've owned several blonde Bassmans and a reissue JTM45 w/ MM OT. The Bassmans are very nice and probably perfect if you want a gritty country or rockabilly twang thing... but if you are after a fatter bluesey rock sound the JTM45 would be my choice. A cool thing with the JTM45 is you can change a few small parts and convert it into several of the various Marshall iteratations.
     
  6. Gear91

    Gear91 Supporting Member

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    Wow, you guys must not have done any mods to the bass channel. With some simple changes, it has the most amazing overdrive (hendrix, zeppelin, whatever). It starts to overdrive at about 2.5. It does get a little overcompressed/saggy with the volume past 5 or 6, but that makes for some really cool sounding soloing--a very midrangey amp (which I happen to like). Properly modded, the Bass channel on the Blonde Bassman has one of the most impressive natural ODs out there. I will need to post some clips.

    And then you have the normal channel which gives you the more tradition Fender sound (sort of in between a tweed and a blackface).

    Since there is a lot of pre-amp overdrive on the bass channel, a master volume for the Bass channel only could be fantastic.
     
  7. dehughes

    dehughes Member

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    Nice. Thanks guys. I appreciate your input. I'm really stuck between these two.... At first, I was set on building the JTM-45, but then I realized that Blonde Bassmans have been used all over the map (Beatles recordings, Brian Setzer, etc...), and I love the tonality of that amp too. I dunno...it's tough. :)

    Keep sharing your thoughts....thanks!
     
  8. gnugear

    gnugear Member

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    I modded my bass channel and while it sounded great, I still prefered the stock Fender sound. Again, I think it's because I prefer Marshalls for that kind of overdrive ... but for clean, the blonde is hard to beat!!

    I think I have a weird transitional model because I've heard people complain about the bass channel being worthless but mine sounds better than the normal channel. Just a little fuller but not farty or bloated in the least. I think the early B models had the bass or treble pot wired differently and it added a ton more bass. I guess that just confuses the matter.

    I want to hear those bassman clips!!
     
  9. MojoHand

    MojoHand Supporting Member

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    I've built both of these amps and the JTM45 is still with me. The blonde Bassman is a fine amp, for sure, but not my favorite Fender. The JTM45 is on my short list of great amps of all time. A lot will depend on your personal preference and playing style but, for me, the JTM45 was a cut above the blonde Bassman.

    Hey Gear91: can you post those bass channel mods? I'd be interested to try those some day. Maybe the modded blonde Bassman would impress more than the stock version did.
     
  10. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    I'd build one that had both preamps feeding a pair of KT66s.

    I've heard tell of, just, such an amp..
     
  11. dehughes

    dehughes Member

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    Yeah, me too.... ;) That's not a bad idea, actually....
     
  12. billdurham

    billdurham Member

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    While I haven't owned a JTM-45, I have owned a Blonde and do own a 73 1987 50watt. Its really apples and oranges in that the Marshall has a lot more preamp gain...talking stock amps here. Bottom line, my 1987 just has a lot more balls than the Blonde did...and that isn't a negative or positive evaluation..they are just different.

    BD
     
  13. atomicmassunit

    atomicmassunit Member

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    Just my opinion, but the blondes I've played are all very bland sounding, and the JTM45s I've played, including my homebrew, are all way better sounding amps to my ear.
     
  14. dehughes

    dehughes Member

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    Interesting... Lots of love for the JTM45 here...
     
  15. Gear91

    Gear91 Supporting Member

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    Bland? Anything but. I have asked my tech to send me the mod info (which is EXTREMELY simple). When I get it, I will let you all know. I also hope to work on getting some clips posted (but that may be a longer process).
     
  16. myles111

    myles111 Member

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    JTM-45 if I had to pick from these two you mention.
     
  17. bluesbreaker59

    bluesbreaker59 Silver Supporting Member

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    JTM45 HANDS DOWN!!! Those blondes look, great, but IMHO, they are like a dog that won't hunt! Very, very bland, I found myself having a tone between a BF and a Tweed, where I was missing the warm, chewy, grit from a Tweed, and the sparkling cleans, and lush reverb of a blackface.
     
  18. Gear91

    Gear91 Supporting Member

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    I have to say that lack of interest in these treasures is making me happy--maybe they will bome down in value or at least even off. I was working on soloing the violin part of Baba O'Reilly with my Blonde Bassman--the natural compression and sustain, even using severe attenuation, is simply magical.
     
  19. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    Tough call. I had a Germino Classic 45 (JTM45 like amp) and a BF Bassman modded to Blonde 6G6-B specs. Both sound fantastic turned up and would just plain ROAR with an OD pedal added. The Bassman has a bit more twang on the top end which makes it nicer for rhythm playing, so I'd give a slight edge to the Fender (roll off on the guitar's treble and kick in the OD pedal for fat leads).
     
  20. GuitarG

    GuitarG Member

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    Gear,
    Do post the mod. I've got a '63 Bassman and I primarilly use the Normal channel. I would love to try a good, reversable mod to tweak up the Bass channel.
    In the studio I found a great sound with the stock bass channel,,the volume and the treble full up, Bass on 4-5 and presence to taste. It is a great overdriven tone with an LP treble pickup with the tone control backed off.
     

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