Help choosing metal/hard rock head for first amp

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by StompBoxBlues, Feb 3, 2008.


  1. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

    Messages:
    18,355
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    under the stars
    My nephew has been using a Cube60 for a while now and is in a band where the other guitarist has a 120w (I believe it is transistor) amp and can't keep up volume-wise.

    They play old and new metal, hard rock, covers. He is interested in a head/cab configuration, uses a Boss Metal Core, and a Zoom G2 (but depending on the amp and it's gain may not need to use them..or just use effects). I am trying to help him figure out which amp to get, and his budget is around approx. $1000 dollars for the head and some less for a 4 x 12" cab.

    Can anyone help out with some suggestions? I was thinking tube, but is transistor also good for metal? I was checking out a Carvin Legacy, but am not sure if that is suited...or if there is something better.

    Thanks for any help. Also cabinet suggestions?
     
  2. joolzriff

    joolzriff Member

    Messages:
    2,165
    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio & U.K
    hmmm what about selling the pedals and adding that to the grand,buy a used marshall 4x12 bottom cab(any condition,the worse the cheaper and will end up looking tatty after a few yrs anyways) and a 50w marshall head,like a JCM800 2204 or even a DSL50W which would be more versatile actually.
    i bet u can find the head for $600 to $700 and a cab for $300 to $400
    no need for 100w amps nowadays nice for the headroom but u just cant turn em up anymore in a garage or club or pub or even a 2,000 seater club.
    my friend has a 50w dsl that i actually love to death and i'm the owner of a $4,000 higain amp so thats what i have to judge by.
    good luck
     
  3. LocustXReign

    LocustXReign Member

    Messages:
    1,751
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Cant beat a 5150 for metal/hard rock. Cheap enough used and they sound great at lower volumes too.

    -dave
     
  4. joolzriff

    joolzriff Member

    Messages:
    2,165
    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio & U.K
    that also,great cheap amp,i used one on a LA guns tour i did and i couldnt have the damn thing past 2 it was so loud,catch 22 isnt it
     
  5. mesanatic

    mesanatic Member

    Messages:
    672
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2007
    Also try,
    Mesa Dual Recto, Tremoverb or Mk III. You might have to shop awhile for a used one under $1000.
    Get a used Mesa 2x12 Recto cab, about $400, or a beat up Mesa 4x12(4-600). Even a Marshall 1960AV or BV(4-600). All have Vintage 30's and will work well for his music.
     
  6. blackba

    blackba Member

    Messages:
    8,425
    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2005
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    I would get a used peavey 5150/6505 or 5150 II/6505+ along with a Gflex 212 or Avatar 212. The 5150 is 120Watts, so its more power than you need, but is known for being a good metal amp....
     
  7. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

    Messages:
    18,355
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    under the stars
    Thanks guys! I am really not up on metal, just reading HC User reviews and discovered that there is Metal, but old, nu, etc.

    Some of the amps we were looking at said it was only good for "old" metallica, etc. not nu-metal.

    I should mention, I calculated the amount he can spend using the current exchange rate and adjusting for the fact that music equipment costs more here in Norway. Some things you can get easily aren't so easy here, and the used market is different too (for myself and my style...I never see a used Soldano, but I hear they are all over the place in the US).

    Anyway, Peavey is available and I am also thinking about Randall, as it seems like those work for metal (some of them anyway) like the 5150 mentioned here...but here that costs..I don't see 5150, but a Peavey Windsor head is right up there at his limit.


    I let him try some of my amps, but mine are mostly (with the exception of a Fender Prosonic head, and a Carvin MTS3212 combo) blues/rock amps.

    Of the ones he tried, he actually really liked the MTS3212...he is new at playing so I tried playing palm muted, fast, double stop on the 5th and 6th string with the thing cranked so he could hear an approximation, and he really liked it.

    I had first suggested the Carvin Legacy, because I personally think I would have preferred it but when we narrowed down what he is after (it was kind of vague at first...no one says "just nu metal" or "old" but name groups I haven't heard of :jo) and read reviews a lot said Legacy wouldn't do metal, a lot said it would only do old metal, I didn't see many or any that said it would do nu...

    But the MTS 3200 (head) I know is a good solid amp, and with the right cabinet I think he could get where he wants to be, maybe...it has diode distortion that I had to set really low to play some OD blues, but crank it and it sounds similar to me. It maybe doesn't do the WHOLE scooped mids thing, but the EQ controls are very tweakable.
    Lots of sounds in there.

    The twist was that he also feels that he wants to be able to play clean for some things. I think they do covers, and I think they are not sticking to one style...so I think maybe this could be a good amp. They are way less expensive than many.

    But the other thing, maybe a transistor Peavey or Randall that is designed for metal. I just don't know exactly how to help him decide.

    Thanks for all the help and any more appreciated too!
     
  8. burner

    burner Member

    Messages:
    2,604
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    Frankly, a JCM 800 is really hard to beat for any style of music.
    That's the route I'd go....
     
  9. bikerdude2

    bikerdude2 Member

    Messages:
    868
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Location:
    Upstate, NY
    a used Mesa DC-5 head. 50 watts, gain to spare, and a 6 band eq kills for what he does.
     
  10. rooster

    rooster Member

    Messages:
    2,123
    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2005
    Location:
    Arizona
    FWIW, I'd go for the JCM800 50W head route as well. The amp on it's own can't get up to the nu-metal levels of distortion, but the basic sound is truly a classic. You can goose it with a tube screamer and get all the distortion you need, and cover any bases. The thing is, IMO (of course), is that an amp built for super-high gain doesn't do the rock-solid crunch thing as well as a good medium gain amp (like an 800), but a pedal can get you easily to any needed gain levels. But, when you build an amp for the super-high gain, it doesn't do the rock-solid crunch thing like the medium gain amp, and you can't get THAT back with a pedal.

    Many people will differ on this in their opinions, but that's the way it goes. I prefer the clean, true sound of an amp breaking up with a solid bottom end to the "mushy" sound of an amp with too much gain built in.

    The only downside (or, should I say, "teh only downside") is that a good 50W Marshall will bury that other guitar player's 120W solid-state head, so he'll have to be careful with the volume control.

    rooster.
     
  11. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

    Messages:
    18,355
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    under the stars
    For some reason (even though I have a Germino JTM-45 clone) I have never understood or gone into Marshalls designations...

    The JCM, are they master volume amps? Because if not, as you point out, he will have to be setting volume low, and then miss out on the sounds he is trying to get?
     
  12. Jimmydeez

    Jimmydeez Member

    Messages:
    3,470
    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2002
    Location:
    Havertown, PA (outside philly)
    If you can find a used Trem-o-verb you should definity scoop it up. In my opinion it is the best am that Mesa ever made.
     
  13. joolzriff

    joolzriff Member

    Messages:
    2,165
    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio & U.K
    the dude is i Norway everybody,boogie will cost a nut....dude ,marshall its british built must be tons of them everywhere,hell take a ferry to london and shop out.......the 5150 is a good choice but its so bloody loud it aint funny
     
  14. coxswain

    coxswain Member

    Messages:
    159
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Yes, I think the Marshall DSL 50 is an excellent recomendation.

    Chase
     
  15. flyangus

    flyangus Member

    Messages:
    204
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    5150 is a great amp for the money, I would have thought they would be popular over in Norway.




    Sorry to Hi-jack, but dude - did you used to be in Tigertailz?
     
  16. shredtrash

    shredtrash Supporting Member

    Messages:
    8,417
    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2007
    Location:
    Albuquerque
    Try a Mesa Single Rectifier. I have a couple of boutique amps for other styles but my recto is great for gigs where I need a heavier sound. I also have a Rivera Hundred Duo 12 that I used to plug in to my VHT 4x12 with a Metal Zone pedal. That got the job done as well and both of these amps can be had for under $1000. Well under for the Rivera.
     
  17. SFW

    SFW Member

    Messages:
    1,352
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2004
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Used Single Recto.
     
  18. whoismarykelly

    whoismarykelly Oh look! This is a thing I can change! Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,214
    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Location:
    Baltimore
    if youre in europe, save a little and get an ENGL, those are supposed to be the bees knees for euro metal.
     
  19. cameron

    cameron Member

    Messages:
    2,988
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2004
    Location:
    Lower East Side, New York
    Given that you're in Europe you might also look for a used Koch. The Twintone is available in a head form, though most US dealer that I've seen only stock the 1x12" combo.

    But an older Marshall is a fine choice.

    Another choice is to use a bass amp and rely on pedals for all the gain. Many of the "stoner rock" players take that approach, especially the ones that tune down all the way to C# or B.
     
  20. joolzriff

    joolzriff Member

    Messages:
    2,165
    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2004
    Location:
    Ohio & U.K
    yes,the steevi jaimz one and i was in the steevi jaimz band all through the 90's...i done the LA guns thing and the robin black one too
     

Share This Page