I love my Marshall Major but...........

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by blackfacetom, Feb 13, 2006.


  1. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    OK, I know some people have real problems, this is mine. I have a 1971 Marshall Major stack, I use a Tonebone switchbone on the two top channels with various other boost type pedals in front of that, anyway it has THE sound and THE tone, as you know the Major is a 200 watt monster. I play Strats and this thing gets natural harmonics on every fret on every string with monsterous volume swells, everything you could ever want. The thing is, to achieve this magical place I have to play at an extreme volume. Now I have other Marshalls and Fender amps and have had a number of the "boutique" amps pass though my door, but nothing can hold a candle to the way the Major sounds, or feels. I thought about turning the cabs to face the wall, or even covering the cabs with blankets, I just cant bring myself to do it. I know an attenuater would be the next logical step, I've heard good and bad about this, and I would probably need two, one for each cabinet, I have never seen a 200 Watt attenuater, plus two would be alot of $$$ for ??? you know. Anyway if any of you guys have any suggestions on other amps that have that beautiful 'bloom" without the volume. Thanks
    Tommy
     
  2. Rory_Rules

    Rory_Rules Supporting Member

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  3. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    Thanks, it is something I will need to contact them about, it states that they can handle up to 160 watts , but may be in the right (or different) direction. Is your name Rory or are you a huge Rory Gallagher fan like me ??
     
  4. gtrnstuff

    gtrnstuff Member

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  5. hogy

    hogy Member

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    I'm a big fan of Majors as well.
    Do not use an attenuator of any kind with your Major. Their output transformers are somewhat unstable and fragile to begin with (despite the size), and you are asking for trouble.

    A Major sounds the way it does because of its power. It is what it is. If you neuter it, the magic goes.

    Hogy
     
  6. daneswede1

    daneswede1 Member

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    Hmm, I have read similiar articles about RItchie Blackmore and his majors as well. THis is something i have readinto about attenuating those Transformers. YOu may be ok however. What I would start by doing however is to NOT crank your amp to say MAX but rather start at a slightly lowered volume. Instead of attenuating at a full 16 ohm bedroom volume (Which is ridiculous to play this thing in a bedroom anyway) reduce it down by 8 ohm impedance. Try that one out. Verify this with your local techie amp guru and your on your way.

    YOu may want to read into the Transformers a little before proceeding. Im not sure how they would handle the transfer of the heat into the THD
     
  7. hogy

    hogy Member

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    Just trust me on this, don't use an attenuator with a Marshall Major.

    Hogy
     
  8. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    I think I'm just going to get a good pair of earplugs, and just enjoys the monster that lives in my house, I know it is rediculus to play this in a bedroom but I am not an active player,and with the choice of great signal boosts availabe, my volumes are are only on about 3 or 4, my signal path is a Strat-effector 13 miniboost-Pedal Doctor Four Speeed Overdrive- HAO Rumble Mod-Tonebone Switchbone to the top two inputs of the Major, I guess earplugs are cheaper than an attenuater, I am lucky I live in a big house on a corner lot. I have other really nice amps, but I allways seem to be attracted to things that hurt me most. Anyway , thanks for the time and if anyone knows of any amps or builders on the market that are comparable, I would appreciate it. Peace..
    Tommy
     
  9. michael.e

    michael.e Supporting Member

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    What about using a pair or a quad of Yellowjackets? M.E.
     
  10. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    I have used Yellowjackets in other amps, and they are good for what they do, it just that the KT-88's are awsome tubes, and with the power section opened up and the pre-amp section the Majors have, I still may have to settle on a good pair of earplugs..
    Tommy
     
  11. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    I know, we better keep it down low, because they are still affordable. I have had Boogies, Carrs, I modded a Sovtek mig 50H and got really close, go figure, even now I have a Jubilee,Jmp,2553, and Plexi RI's and I am just hooked on the Major. It's a good thing I don't gig any more, I don't think I could carry it around too much without hurting myself. I have never had a stack where I needed help to put the head on top, but I do now.
    Tomy
     
  12. twoheadedboy

    twoheadedboy Member

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    Wow, how the heck can you still hear? Get yourself a nice pair of custom moulded earplugs with at least -25db filters and you could probably keep playing at your current volume.
     
  13. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    can you pull two tubes like on old superleads?
     
  14. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    I all-ready have tinnitus from playing loud over the last 25 years, and I know earplugs, because now you guys know, they have dedicated plugs for musicians which is something I need to do, it's kind of hard to wrap my mind around it, it's kind of like using condoms to me, you know, it just does'nt feel the same, but I think it is a trade-off, how many bell tones do I want to hear in the middle of the night, but then again the feeling is bliss, I guess it is like any other addiction, wonder if my insurance plan covers this one..??
    Tommy
     
  15. blackfacetom

    blackfacetom Member

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    I thought about pulling a couple of tubes, but theese have a reputation for being so sensitive and potential fire boxes it just does'nt seem worth the risk of hurting the amp..
    Tommy
     
  16. Rich M

    Rich M Member

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    The plate voltage in the Major would kill those for sure.
     
  17. Troubleman

    Troubleman Silver Supporting Member

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    I know this one all too well. I'd abandon the attenuator idea unless there's one specifically designed with a Major in mind. Thinking about it, I'd like to drop a Power Soak onto the head of Tom Scholz from 10 stories up one of these days; what a retched piece of ****. Forget the attenuator: that's putting a death warrant on your output tranny. Marshall Majors in and of themselves, when cranked - eat speakers, their own trannys, and eardrums. That said, they do something that no other Marshall does with respect to sensitivity and juicy-corpulent harmonics. String windings, frets, fingerprints, and unreal tone come through like no other amp can do. Turn your cab around backwards so that you don't kill your audience (childhood memories of what one did to 80-year old mrs hoergenroeder at a performance by my youth-group of "godspell" - pretty much knocked her chair over and landed her in the 4th row), and get a good set of ear plugs. You might need a facial massage from the hugh grin the tone will undoubted produce as well...

    Good luck. That's a lot of amp

    Peace,

    jb
     
  18. steve10358

    steve10358 Supporting Member

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    Has anyone ever REALLY blown up a tranny cause of an attenuater?? Without mismatching ohms?? No user error whatsoever?

    Just curious.

    S.
     
  19. Roe

    Roe Member

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    perhaps greg germino could make a reliable major - either as a 200w or as a 100w.
     
  20. trisonic

    trisonic Member

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    The effect is similar to Earthquakes.
    I experienced a 5.6 in Tokyo and watched (stupidly) from a high rise window, my eyes felt weird - nothing to see , except for dust rising, because I was vibrating at the same amplitude.

    Best, Pete.
     

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