Gibson GA-5 reissue (Les Paul Junior)???

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Robert1950, Jun 28, 2006.


  1. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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  2. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    Wish I could be of more help in the tone description but i don't have much of a reference point. the GA5 is a gritty sounding amp, especially so with humbuckers. I got one as a gift last year and truthfully, I never really bonded. It's probably just me, as friends that play mine love the sound. Personally, I think I have a need for reverb and some kind of tone shaping controls, neither of which are available on-board. Also, I prefer a larger speaker. It needs repeating though, that out of 5 guitar players that get together at my house pretty regularly, I'm the only one that's cool on this amp.
     
  3. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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    Yes. I want grit. I'll be playing an ES335 style guitar with Gibson '57 classics and a G&L Legacy (Tribute).
     
  4. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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    Bumpola. I just want another opinion if it is out there.
     
  5. Upgrade

    Upgrade Member

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    I love mine with both buckers and single coils.
     
  6. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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    Bump one more time for one last opinion.
     
  7. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    Just an updated opinion...since answering your post, I've gone back and had a second look/sound at this amp. Can't tell you what exactly happened, but now I really like it! I had put this aside and played my Carr Rambler almost exclusively, only bringing out the GA-5 when we needed another amp for the little group that gets together at my house. Can't explain how I'd formed a cool opinion on this, but today I took it out and lined it up to a Carr Mercury and Rambler and tried to do an even handed comparisson. It does sound grittier than the other two for sure, and obviously it's a different animal, but it also sounds very good. I was surprised that the small 8" speaker sounded almost as full as the other's 12". Still playing it with a Holy Grail reverb and a Boss EQ. This was an amp I was thinking of selling...not any more!
     
  8. Occam

    Occam Member

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    How does the little Epiphone compare to this? I already have a cab that I really love (little 1x8" Fender combo amp that I gutted and added a Weber signature AlNiCo speaker and took the amp and chasis out). I'd really love to find more tiny watt heads or even combos.
     
  9. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    I don't have any first hand experience with the Epiphone...so I don't know. Here's a look at the gibson though in case this tells you anything. I've been advised to replace the diodes with F.R.E.D.S. for a better sound and I was considering messing around with this until today. Now all of a sudden I don't feel the need.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. Occam

    Occam Member

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    What are FREDS? Also I don't see any diodes in this picture...am I missing them or are they not is this pic?
     
  11. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Member

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    I'm also interested in this amp, would make a nice home amp.. So please chime in with your experiences. I'd play it with my Telecaster (Esquire actually) and Telesonic mostly, perhaps a LP Jr in the future too.

    And if you don't dig the GA-5, what would you suggest as the perfect little home amp? If I've understood correctly, the 8" speaker isn't the best possible, but then again with bigger speakers it gets so much louder I couldnt use it home.
     
  12. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    Occam-I had posted some questions about this amp on another board that i frequent. Here's what I was advised :

    "If you look at the lower left side of the board you will see four parts that look like little black resistors with a silver band around one end connected in a diamond pattern with a pair of red wires coming from the power tranny. That's your silicon diode bridge rectifier. Those change AC voltage into DC voltage to make your amp work. The problem is that these are about .50 each and they sound bad due to the very slow conversion time. FRED's are Fast Recovery Eptiaxil Diodes or FRED for short. these offer a much faster conversion time and really help alot in making any audio gear sound better that used diodes as rectifiers. FRED's run around $5.00-$7.00 each depending on which one's you get.
    BTW, if they had really wanted to make it like the Fifites GA-5's they would have used a tube rectifier. The FRED's will give you a pretty good tube-type rectifier sound. Warmer, smoother highs and better note detail and harmonics."
     
  13. LP26

    LP26 Member

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    I've had mine for about 18 months and love the simplicity of it. I get great - and I mean GREAT - tone from humbuckers and single coils.

    I use a Keeley Compressor and a Maxon AD9 analog delay in front of it. I also replaced the stock JJ's (which are good) with NOS Teslas (which are great).

    You want grit? Get the GA5!
     
  14. ToneRanger

    ToneRanger Member

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    Sounds promising.. I love grit! :) What about the volume, how loud it is when it really starts cooking? I'm a bit worried about my neighbours reactions..

    I've also thought about a delay-companion for the GA-5, if/when I get it.. Maxon sure would be sweet. On the other hand, the Fender reverb tank would also be mighty cool..
     
  15. 6789

    6789 Member

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    I've had a GA-5 Les Paul Junior reissue amp for a few years. I've found some guitars sound better plugged straight in than others. I mostly use old 1960s japanese crazy looking guitars though - many of them have dull sounding pick ups and need a bit of EQ help from a pedal. my univox high flyer with P 90s and my 2005 Gibson SG with classic 57s both sound great plugged straight in - no EQ needed.

    I use one of those Sound Enhancer box/stands. It really does greatly increase the low end and volume of the amp.

    I need to sell some of my gear to pay for newer gear I've gotten and the amp and enhancer are two things I've been going back and forth on deciding if I should keep or sell them. I've got bigger and smaller amps - this is a middle area amp for me. the smaller amp is a Lovepedal 1/2 watt into an old Bell and Howell cab.
     
  16. dbx

    dbx Supporting Member

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  17. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    Nice reference site. Interesting to see the family history.
     
  18. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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    Like I said before, I like grit. And I was thinking of getting a Compressor too.
     
  19. photoguy

    photoguy Member

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    I'm grateful that you started this thread as its allowed me to re-discover this amp. I've got a pretty complete pedal board that I've never even plugged into the Gibson...I'll have to try that.
     

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