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Headroom Issues + More...

markom89

Senior Member
Messages
9,189
I've been playing my FTR37 with my band every night for the past few months and I just can't seem to get the amount of clean headroom that I want out of it. It does great "not fully clean" cleans, but I need fully clean cleans, damnit :mad:

We play loud, aggressive and clean-headroom-required-at-times stuff!

Seriously, I do alot of ambiental/atmospheric stuff and all my stuff gets lost in the mix. Ontop of that, when I kick on a pedal, no matter how loud the volume's at (on the pedal) it just seems to get lost. When I'm playing at normal volumes this doesn't seem to happen.

I want:
An amp that will give me loud as hell cleans
An amp that will take pedals like its no one's business
An amp that will not get lost in the mix
An amp that can do a good natural break up sound when really pushed
An amp that's reliable

What doth I describe?

A Hiwatt?
A Matamp?
An Ampeg?
What?!

Thanks :)

Oh, just to make it clear... I'm still keeping the FTR37- It's a sweeeeet amp! My Bruno UG30 can't even get nearly as much clean headroom as the FTR :(
 

Plague Dog

Member
Messages
2,609
I think the Ampeg is the answer. I have a friend who has one and it is the loudest clean I've ever heard, The VT-40 is great, but a great guitar amp is the B25. I believe it's 50 watts, but it's all clean.
 
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TaronKeim

Member
Messages
2,930
Headroom is a matter of poweramp wattage and preamp gainstages (or control over them).

I can get ridiculously loud cleans with my VHT Deliverance 60 but I could make a man sterile at 50 paces with the Deliverance 120's clean tones. However, that is only in the 3 gainstage mode with master turned up and the preamp gains relatively low.

Anything in the Plexi camp or the Twin camp can offer up ample headroom. A JTM 45/100 has incredible clean tones that can be loud as hell - huge midrange that is impossible to lose in the mix and takes pedals like a pro.

Ampeg VT-40 or VT-20 depending on the year can make your ear drums rupture and have great EQs with subtle but gorgeous reverb.

Hiwatts are a good choice as well but I don't have any personal experience with them.

Some Sunn amps, 60's era, are really fantastic clean machines as well, solid state and valve both sound great but it can be hard to find one in good condition.

_TJK*
 

markom89

Senior Member
Messages
9,189
Thanks a bunch, guys.

I'm gonna' have to try out a Twin (I've never done so, I'm embaressed to say :eek:) and the Ampeg's. My good buddy also says the VT40 would be a good choice. FWIW, I'm gonna' be using the amps mainly with single coils.

Thanks again, doods!

TJK, How've you been? Hope all is well.
 

vicdeluca71

Member
Messages
1,503
135 watt twin reverb,these were made in the late 70's to early 80's.They are the absolute best at delivering what you describe.These are easy to find and are fairly cheap,they are not highly reguarded here thought.Not everyone,but alot here will say that they are "cold and sterile".This is simply not true,they just don't know the amps potential..These came with crappy speakers and need a balanced choice,also need the proper tubes...........They have an U/L transformer and are cathode bias that will give you a warm tone even at low volumes..I've had Hiwatt's,Ampeg's tons of old fenders from brownface to silverface,alot of boutiqes and production tube amps...Out of all of these the 135 watter was the best thus far(second was a 66 blackface twin reverb with rca blackplates and original c12n's)for versatility and pedal use...................Seriously you can coax anything from these amps with right pedal.My last band would go from Taj to Sabbath,to Cash to Radiohead without breaking a sweat.......The only downside is the weight of this amp,my latest one I made into a head for easier transport.....
 

J D Miley

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
543
I had an FTR37, the clean channel just sounds kinda Lazy at times. Great tone just notta nuff umff. I am leaning towards somthing in a 40 to 50 watt power. If most bands would invest in a good board and monitors, none of us would need anything louder than a good 30 watts.
 
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The_Whale

Member
Messages
6,133
You also might consider a high powered solid state amp.

I have a Peavey Stereo Chorus 212 with EMVs that is very, very clean when it's very, very loud.

:knitting
 
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Messages
3,041
Fender Twin or Ampeg V4. My bassist bought an Ampeg V4 last night and it's loud and clean. Did I mention it was loud?
 

markom89

Senior Member
Messages
9,189
I had an FTR37, the clean channel just sounds Lazy. A Bruno Cowtipper 45 or a ToneKing Meteor or a pure Sixty-Four 40-50 watter will drwaf the FTR 37 clean channel
Pitty you feel that way about the FTR's cleans. I love them and think they're on par w/ the Bruno's cleans, mind you, they're different. I've had the FTR side by side w/ a UG30 (my other amp) and my friends CT45. All great cleans, just different. That said, this thread's more about headroom issues...

Guys, pardon my ignorance, but isn't the Ampeg V4 a bass amp?
 

Joey22

Member
Messages
72
A Fender Twin Reverb...RI or Oringinal. The only thing on your list it won't do is the breakup...But a nice pedal will fix that!

Good Luck!
 

riffmeister

Member
Messages
16,606
The loudest & cleanest (if desired) 50 watter I ever played was a Harry Joyce Custom 50.......like a Hiwatt.
 

J.T. Guitar

Platinum Member
Messages
4,082
I had an FTR37, the clean channel just sounds Lazy. A Bruno Cowtipper 45 or a ToneKing Meteor or a pure Sixty-Four 40-50 watter will drwaf the FTR 37 clean channel
:agree

It also depends what type of clean you are looking for... If you want Fender clean the Twin is it. If you want Hiwatt clean go that way. For me a Pure 64 Mean Street has great headroom, and has a fullness I've not found in other amps. And... I am a recovering FTR owner.
 

TaronKeim

Member
Messages
2,930
TJK, How've you been? Hope all is well.
Things are good Marko, down to one guitar and one amp and no pedals right now and lovin' it.

Gotta grab another Soloway (6-string with a trem as opposed to my 7-string with a hardtail) and a second amp and I'll be set for gear - give or take a pedal/rack effect or two (harmonizer/looper/delays).

For the most part I've just been playing and working on my sight-reading.

If you can try a VHT Deliverance 120, seriously, give it a try, set the master to 12 o'clock or higher, and put the first preamp gain to noon and zero the second one - the boldest, "cable under your fingers" shimmering clean tone I've had - and it cuts through an absolutely pounding drummer with a double-bass setup.

_TJK*
 

wsaraceni

Member
Messages
7,870
how many watts is the FTR? 37?

marko, i know you like the komet concorde. but you should really check out the k60. with the way you like to change stuff around, the ability to swap tubes would do you great. i also think a k60 would fit the bill with what you want here.
 




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