I am no longer allowed to be here!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Miles, May 8, 2008.

  1. Miles

    Miles Member

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    I just bought a Line 6 Flextone III

    Just kick me out...seriously.

    I have always been a tube snob...always. I have never given anything a second look although I would try to like it.

    HOWEVER, my gigging, practicing, writing, recording rig has become completely clean tone + a couple dirt pedals. I have learned to approach guitar as simply producing a good sound or the right sound for the song, and I have become VERY carefree what actually produces it. It's about the sound created and I've developed a completely anti-purist approach the past year.

    While my main gigging amp is my Genz Benz Black Pearl 2x12 which is all tube, I pitted the Flextone III 2x12 running clean against a ton of fenders and voxes and seriously, the damn thing makes pedals sound enormous and articulate.

    I will always agree, at least with the choices available, that no digital package in an amplifier package will really produce tube distortion and breakup accurately, I love pedals, I just do. I have been through over 30 higher end tube amps from the high gainers to the no master volume 60's blackfaces. This Flextone, run clean, with my Keeley Rat and OCD is a friggin' awesome sounding package.

    I love it and I hate it, but my standards for what equates good tone have deteriorated to nothing. If the sound is there, and it's simple enough, I'll use it. I don't care if mice are running it, so long as it works and sounds good.

    Since my Black Pearl is the perfect clean tone + pedal tone crafting tool with plenty of headroom, it is my favorite. But for backup, my 2nd amp couldn't hold a candle against the Flextone. Plus, for demos anymore, I always use a PODxt to get raunchy and strange tones for my songwriting. I find that more stimulating than playing the purist rigs. I don't know why.

    So, please kick me out of The Gear Page...

    Bring on the bashing, or your comments please...:munch
     
  2. remocity

    remocity Supporting Member

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    Bye for now..............
    See you the day after you gig with it for the first time and realize it won't cut through the mix.
     
  3. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    Nah, no one will say boo to you. Had you bought an Axe-FX though, then you'd get the hounds on your trail. :D

    In the end, it is fun to talk the tools, but it's not really about the tools. And if the Flextone is your amp and you dig it... more power to ya.
     
  4. Jim S

    Jim S Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I think that's awesome. :BEER

    Digressing, I can't tell you how many great guitar tones I've heard with a Fender ____ Reverb (TGP approved) preceded by a line of MXR and Boss pedals (TGP banned).

    .
     
  5. Miles

    Miles Member

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    Say what you wish. I've more than enough gigs to know what frequencies do and don't cut through and I know how to dial things. Not cutting through with any rig is more attributed to those who don't know how to dial in at the gig, not so much to the actual gear used.

    Case in point, I hear a great deal of LP --> Mesa/Marshall guys who don't know the first thing about dialing their tone and don't cut through. HOWEVER, this is not the equipment, it's the poor use of it.
     
  6. Zero

    Zero Member

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    Our keyboardist let us use his Flextone amp for recording some guitar tracks. It was just a quicky thing and i didn't want to haul any gear. MAN the thing sounded like crap. I suppose it works for some people but I would not be able to use one of those.
     
  7. stratzrus

    stratzrus Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B Supporting Member

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    I think that's all that really matters.

    If the tone is working for you to the point where you are still inspired to play, what else can you ask for?
     
  8. Plan9FOS

    Plan9FOS Member

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    Have you played it at gig volumes?

    I had one ... tuned it up to club volume level ... sold it the next week. But maybe your setup is better than mine was ... certainly lots of options to be explored on them ...
     
  9. ecbluesman54

    ecbluesman54 Member

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    I think the Flextone III w/ the shortboard is great for a cover gig, and an ease of use. Hopefully the Spider valve is a test run, and line 6 will start incorporating that technology into the Flextone and Vetta series.
     
  10. guildchild

    guildchild Member

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    i couldn't agree more. i occasionally have a rhythm gtr gig with a lead guy who runs an SG into a 100W JVM410H. his frequency spectrum is so wide that he just completely disappears in the mix. of course, he compensates with volume. so, it's blaringly loud on stage, and i can't hear myself at all. then he goes to solo, and the sound is just gone. at the end of the song he's mad and yells at me to turn down (because he's max'd out). the funny part is that i'm playing an 18W swart that looks like a toaster compared to his knob-laden marshall.

    btw, not dogging marshall or their users per se...i've seen plenty of fenders decapitate most people in the first 3 rows.

    i am curious, however, to know how you go about dialing your sound at gigs. when i was running a twin rev i'd push the mids until it felt ok and then surround it with the high's and low's. just curious.
     
  11. digital jams

    digital jams Member

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    Good god this has me rolling on the ground!!!!!!

    Playing amps aint like golf where rich guys that suck made rules so they still could "beat" a far superiour player.


    Congrats, cool amp.
     
  12. digital jams

    digital jams Member

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    Your saying that a dimed Marshall is getting buried by your 18 watt thingie?

    I have heard many a name called out for having issues with cutting......Marshall voicing has never been one. First time I have ever read this on a forum.
     
  13. Ed DeGenaro

    Ed DeGenaro Supporting Member

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    I think he's saying that the way the Marshall is dialed is not cutting.
     
  14. digital jams

    digital jams Member

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    I think he said his bud was maxed out?

    One of the guys I play with has a Hotrod 1x12 and he dials it in real ice picky so yeah it will slice over me but it is not pleasant.
     
  15. Ed DeGenaro

    Ed DeGenaro Supporting Member

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    'Well seeing that a 18 watter is about 8 dB quieter than a 100 watter...it's conceivable.
     
  16. digital jams

    digital jams Member

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    Thinking ok, on od1 and past that if he is running more compressed then yes I can see it happening or if the guy is laying down the verb.

    Alright I take it back :argue as it could happen. I would be damn embarassed but yeah it could happen.
     
  17. torgeot

    torgeot Member

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    I had a Flextone II and loved it for recording, I only tried it live twice, didn't really do what I wanted but, when cranking it I did find that if I through on a cheap DOD FX 53 Classic tube it seemed to warm up and sounded much better. I have since sold it (but I sell everything...)
     
  18. Miles

    Miles Member

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    I have played it at gig volumes.

    Here is my situation:

    I play in an all original band, we try to cover every aspect of the arsty fartsy industrial/quirky melodic soft/hard rock...yeah, that's a rather strange description.

    Beside the point, I used to use overdriven channel switching tube amps to attain my tone. I need a lot of changes as a rhythm player and I do everything from finger-picking, to jazzy progressions, to very abrasive industrial rock. I started to notice that channel switchers just didn't feel very good, and I didn't get the open smack in the face driven tone that I wanted.

    Then I started using a single channel 30 watter/ all-tube (which is still my main rig...my Genz Benz Black Pearl. While it sounds wonderful pushed, I still need a dead clean and I have enough quick changes to make that I need something footswitchable. There are many parts throughout the set that I use volume knob to clean up, but I still need very fast changing abilities. I literally swept through about 30 tube amps from rivera, boogie, old 60's blackface heads, vox, peavey, marshall, etc...

    At this time, I started doing a lot of recording on my own and realized that as long as a certain sound is being accomplished, I couldn't care less where it was coming from. This made me more than happy to use a couple dirt pedals for everything running into my clean 30 watter 2x12. This is enough juice for any gig, and I like the clean signal I get from my tube amp.

    As for my tone, I don't use a lot of gain, I like a nice big clean that is responsive and clear, and pushing my RAT or OCD into it for a big, articulate rhythm tone.

    So, I brought 4 amps to practice yesterday:

    Genz Black Pearl
    Mesa Blue Angel
    '66 Bandmaster into 2x12 cab
    Flextone III 2x12 combo

    I practiced all 4 for three hours and the only amp that couldn't be bothered was the Genz Benz. The Flextone unquestionably had better fidelity, richness, punch, and is FAR more tweakable in the clean section to put a pedal through.

    Bottom line, easy to find a great clean, with many options to tune to various rooms/mic-types. This makes it very craftable for pedal use.

    Clean, it sounds every bit as punchy and rich and responsive as any clean amps I've played. You name it.

    DISCLAIMER: I am still yet to find a modelling rig that can do amp overdrive as well as a tube amp. I have NOT found it. BUT, I'm not using amp overdrive, am I? I use a clean signal with pedals...that is MY sound and I can't be bothered with anything. After years of various overdriven tube amps, I enjoy the sound of dirt pedals more. Why? Not sure, I guess my ears just like using them better. But yeah, I've yet to find a modelling rig inside a speaker cabinet that can replicate the feel of an AC30 at breakup. Direct??? Modelling is the bees knees and if all gigs were running direct, I would only use modellers. In other words, if I were using a lightly overdriven amp for all I do, I would use a tube amp, and I'd use my genz benz that does it masterfully.

    There are drawbacks to modelling rigs, but for me, a highly tweakable, big sounding, responsive clean sound makes my pedals sound amazing.

    I cut through without question, just right where I always do, below the cymbals and lead, and above the bass. My bandmates were astonished, and I'm not ashamed to use it.

    Now, keep in mind my influences:

    Lennon
    Radiohead
    Nine Inch Nails
    Killing Joke
    Bird/Monk/Miles
    Queens of the Stone Age
    David Bowie
    Beethoven
    Chopin

    Not exactly Robben Ford, Eric Johnson, or Jeff Beck. While I like Hendrix, he influenced by doing things the "wrong way" at the time anyways.

    So, if it gets the sound, ME LIKE! And the flextone does. Yeah, I hated the idea of it too, but I'm getting used to it.

    Come on in, the water is warm.

    Bash on!!!

    However, I would like to hear some substantive criticism rather than hasty generalizations, they just don't hold water.
     
  19. remocity

    remocity Supporting Member

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    ??????????????

    First hand experience.........
     
  20. Leonc

    Leonc Wild Gear Hearder Gold Supporting Member

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    Do people actually think that there's something inherent in a DMA that means it can't cut through the mix? Some folks think there something special about soundwaves produced by DMAs that results in them not working like soundwaves produced by tube amps? Man...those are ignorant misconceptions...

    Granted...you can set up DMAs really badly. Maybe it's even easier to do this with DMAs than regular amps for a few reasons:

    - it's easy to use WAY too much gain
    - it's easy to use EQ that rulz in the bedroom (and is equally horrid in live performance)
    - it's easy to use WAY too many effects

    In fact...that pretty much describes at least half of the "factory" patches that you'll find in lots of DMAs, right out of the box. You can hear them if you walk into just about any Guitar Center. You'll hear the obligatory 14 year old playing the obligatory heavy metal riffs into the DMA using the built in patch named "Cardboard box full of angry wasps".

    But if you use your ears and at least a bit of gray matter, you don't use those kinds of settings for live performance. You set it up so that it cuts through. It's not hard to do.
     

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