Dr. Z Amps overhyped?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by jcshirke, Oct 27, 2007.

  1. bluesmain

    bluesmain Member

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    I haven't owned a Z yet. I have only heard good press though and one will end up onstage with me sooner or later ;)
     
  2. Shugaboy

    Shugaboy Member

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    My Z has not let me down over the last two years of gigging. One less thing I have to worry about.
     
  3. guitarsnguns04

    guitarsnguns04 Member

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    my z oozes tone..great amps in my opinion. He covers a lot of tones in his amps as well. There is almost something for everyone in his amps.You just have to find the one that suits your ears and styles.
     
  4. Tele_62

    Tele_62 Member

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    Dr Z amps;

    I love 'em, They work for me.

    I understand and appreciate they do not work for everyone, nothing does.

    To each his own, I don't knock your gear, please do not knock mine.
     
  5. Craftmatic

    Craftmatic Silver Supporting Member

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    I am getting into my used MAZ Sr. head which I bought used (less than a year old and in mint condition) for a little over $1,000. I could never touch any of the other boutique amps because as far as I know there isn't anything I could get, new or used, for less than $2,000 that seems comparable. I was disappointed when I first plugged in. I was expecting instant magical tone. But as with other amps, I realized that tubes, speakers & cabs can make or break an amp functioning to it's full potential. First "tweak" was replacing the shorting Sovtek Rectifier with a Mullard. The MAZ starting sounding more alive. Considering that in it's 8 months none of the other tubes were changed I'm curious about how it will sound with a new quad of (Eurotubes.com) JJ EL 84s and whatever preamp tubes I decide to retube with. Right now the speaker & cab factor is being taken care of by my '65 Tremolux's 2 X 10 cab. I have to say without a full retube, and finding the right knob settings for "my sound," this head sounds amazing. BTW, I play a vintage-style Strat most of the time.

    I wondered about the hype at first but the reality is that for about $1,000 I have an amp with a sound beyond anything I have ever owned (including the Tremolux, which has been recently retubed). Just my $0.02. :dude
     
  6. µ¿ z3®ø™

    µ¿ z3®ø™ Member

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    i've only ever played the rt. 66 and the SRZ65 and haven't owned either.
    it's curious to note the reactions to the rt. 66 on this thread. folks seem to either love 'em or hate 'em w/ nary a middlin' response.
    i was expecting an amp along the JTM45 type flavour. i was very surprised to find something very different and unique. i really liked the amp particularly when paired w/ the Zbest 2-12 cab. very swampy sounding amp w/ a very nice response to my playing.
    the SRZ65, i think, might be the very best JCM800 that i've ever heard/played. anybody that has one that is considering getting rid of it, feel free to PM me.
    Dr. Zed's overhyped?
    geez, that would never happen at TGP, would it?
     
  7. Voxy Foxy

    Voxy Foxy Member

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    well obviously they sound better than my map. My map is a tonal nightmare...but I'm going to have to bet that my AMP still sounds better than any Z you can throw at me. :D:D:D
     
  8. iggs

    iggs Member

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    My Route 66 (and all other Doc's amps it seems) is extremely sensitive to tubes, speakers and guitars ... a lot of other amps are voiced in such way that different tubes will not make a significant difference. I'm not saying one is better then the other, just that Dr. Z amps due to their straightforward design and minimalistic approach react quite drastically to all the other components of one's setup.
    Personally, I love that ... I played many amps that always sounded the same regardless of what I plugged in. Some people think that makes the amp great ... awesome, whatever floats your boat! I like the brutal honesty of Doc's amps and if I have to struggle a bit to make it sound it's best, so be it ... I really feel like it's making me a better musician for it.
    Since I got my 66 I haven't stopped experimenting with tubes because every time I put something different in, the amp immediately responds to the change.
    Right now I'm waiting for a NOS Mullard GZ34, EF86 and a Mazda 12AX7, can't wait to plug them in ... thanks Mike KCA!
     
  9. dbx

    dbx Member

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    Can any owner quantify the humbucker "issue"?
     
  10. iggs

    iggs Member

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    I can only speak from my experience with the Route 66 ... with humbucker type guitar (Music Man Silhouette Special in my case) the tone was a lot thicker, crunchier and more compressed then with my SC strat or my new US Deluxe Tele. Again, because of the amp sensitivity, there is no "set it and forget it" way of having the amp work the same with both humbuckers and single coils. You pretty much have to tweak the tone and volume controls for every guitar you plug-in. I understand that might be an "issue" for some people that are looking for a good "base" sound out of an amp and then be able to switch different guitars without having to touch the amp. That's not going to happen with Route 66 at least. I don't think it was designed to do that in the first place. Also, I believe that (by design) you get most of the crunch from the power amp section and the PI instead of the EF86 front end so you can't really get those jangly cleans with humbuckers because of lack of headroom ... again, not an "issue" or a "problem" with the amp, just how it was designed ... it really was not meant to be everyone's cup'o'tea.
     
  11. dbx

    dbx Member

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    Thanks iggs...I think you said it well. i don't asscociate jangly and clean with humbuckers (just my experience) anyway. I don't see, and I've been trying, how an amp eq'd for singles can then be hooked up to humbuckers (or visa versa) without any changes...
     
  12. wire 247

    wire 247 Member

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    I have a maz 38 sr., the eq is definitely different, about a month in I finally found the souind between the amp and what od to use. I was ready to sell but now there is no way I would sell it. Dr. z amps are underhyped if anything.
     
  13. welcometoashley

    welcometoashley Supporting Member

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    i really like Z amps 'cause they sound like their own thing.... i think the circuit/tone stacks are relatively unique and it just works in terms of the sound i'm after and my rig set-up....
     
  14. Dr. Tweedbucket

    Dr. Tweedbucket Deluxe model available !!!11

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    *BbbbbbbBBbBBbBBBbBZZzzZZzZZzPpZZzZZzT! * I'm sorry, that was the wrong answer. :nono Please go sit in the corner until you say you're sorry.
     
  15. BIGGERSTAFF

    BIGGERSTAFF Member

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    I concur on the SRZ. That amp just flat out smokes(it's all the crunch and punch of a JCM,as well as a more harmonically complext tone), and mine isn't going anywhere. I really like the Rt 66 as well- nice thick, chewy tones(I've got a Delta 88, which is kind of like it's big brother in some regards).
     
  16. µ¿ z3®ø™

    µ¿ z3®ø™ Member

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    to say nothing of the touch response, which the JCM800 doesn't even begin to approach that of the SRZ65.
    just really wonderful.
    i should shut up if i ever stand a chance of finding a used one.
    why would they make them a LTD edition and only make so few of them if they sold out so quickly? they were very reasonably priced, as well.
     
  17. tuna

    tuna Member

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    I've had a few myself (on #6) as of this moment and I will have to say it is one of the nicest sounding clean amps I have owned (Stang Ray 1-12 combo). For the money, I do not think you will find a better deal than a Dr Z amp.
     
  18. FuzzOff

    FuzzOff Member

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    Great to hear that amp is working out for you! It was hard to part with, but I just couldn't keep 'em all!
     
  19. FuzzOff

    FuzzOff Member

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    I'll add my .02 cents in on the "overhyped" debate. I recently bought a Stingray, after owning a sweet Maz Jr I sold to clmazza. INCREDIBLE sounding amp, very 3-D with a heavy tribute to the Vox AC30. A little pickier than the Maz on pedals but an absolutely joy to play. It has the complexity of a Matchless DC-30, but staying truer to the Vox sound with some unique Dr Z character thrown in. I have owned alot of nice amps over the years and this one ranks near the top.

    As for the "hype factor", I could rattle off about a half dozen amps that are overhyped on all the forums, with the list changing weekly. It's the internet phenomenon.

    What's different about Dr Z--Z owners are a *relatively* small but loyal crowd and they've been around about 10 years now (I think?) Not exactly a flavor-of-the-month brand huh? I remember hearing Lonnie Mack playing through a Z almost 10 years ago at the Columbus Guitar Show. That Dr Z was the talk of the show.
     
  20. ruger9

    ruger9 Member

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    I'm no Z expert, I just got my 1st... an RxJR. The one BIG thing I notice (compared to all the other amps I've owned), is that the amp kind of has one sound... it's own. It doesn't cop other amps sounds (except maybe AC30 since alot of Z's designs are based on that), and no matter where you put the knobs, the RxJR sounds like the RxJR. There's not a bad setting on the amp.

    Other amps I've owned could easily get too thin or too thick or too nasal, etc. I find there really isn't much dialing in required with the Z. It sounds like what it sounds like regardless (mostly) of knob positions. So if you like it, you LOVE it, and if it doesn't work for you, you hate it.

    Me, at first I was a little taken aback and worried that the RxJR may not be "versatile" enough for me (I was simply used to having amps that were jack-of-all-trades, could do a "little Fender" here and a "little Marshall" there), but once I realized the RxJR is the TONE I like, I love the thing. Easy to dial in, takes pedals well, attenuates well, super touch sensitive & responsive, percussive even if you want it, and simply has the tone (for me.)

    Add the fact the Mike Zaite is a great guy with customer service 2nd to none, and the Z-Forums are cool too (yes, they are all "Z-Natics", by definition, but there's isn't all the immaturity/bitchiness that frequents this forum on occasion), and the great value, and you simply can't go wrong... IF YOU LIKE THE Z TONE.
     

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