Lightweight, “Easy to work on” amps

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by amdowell, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. amdowell

    amdowell Supporting Member

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    I have a ridiculous anxiety about amplifiers. I have always owned Mesa/Boogie amps and, to be honest, looking inside them is terrifying. I can’t imagine trying to diagnose an issue.

    This has led me to wonder if there is an amp, Marshally in nature, that sounds great, is light weight and is a pretty straight forward circuit should it need to be worked on.
     
  2. Vanyu

    Vanyu Member

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    That’s a bit of a tough bill to fill there, seeings how most modern amps are more difficult to work on in general. For a Marshally sound that’s easy to work on you’re gonna want... a Marshall. Any 1959/1987/2203/2204 based amp (whether it be combo or head) will be about as straightforward as they come, along with any of their boutique counterparts. May not be super lightweight, but that’s the cost of quality transformers :)
     
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  3. davidespinosa

    davidespinosa Supporting Member

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    Weight comes from:
    * cabinet
    * transformers
    * chassis

    Pine is lighter than birch, which is lighter than MDF.

    Lower power means smaller transformers.

    Aluminum is lighter than steel.
     
  4. woof*

    woof* Member

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    I agree with you.
     
  5. Geetarpicker

    Geetarpicker Member

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    Marshall 2061x 20 watt head. It’s hand wired and very easy to work on.
     
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  6. T Wilcox

    T Wilcox Member

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    Any of ceriatones lunch box heads
     
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  7. Darkness

    Darkness Member

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    18w Marshall clone.
     
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  8. gillman royce

    gillman royce Member

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    Marshall Studio 15. 1 x12 Simple lay out, weighs 36.5 lbs. Fender Princeton cleans, JTM 45 plexi tones. Lots of Marshall firsts. Owned two - still have one .Total keeper. There are a couple for sale over on Reverb.
     
  9. Aslan

    Aslan Silver Supporting Member

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    Easy: Fender Tweed Deluxe (5E3)
     
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  10. Dexter.Sinister

    Dexter.Sinister Still breathing Gold Supporting Member

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    Used Sewell Texaplex.

    Doug Sewell closed up his shop when he took the amp design gig at PRS. I had two of his exceptional amps (Wampus Cat and Texaplex) and the Tex is absolutely what you seek.
     
  11. the_Chris

    the_Chris It's All Been Done Before Supporting Member

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    First thing I could think of is a Swart STR Tweed. PTP hand wired pieces of art and they're ridiculously lightweight for a tube amp. I owned an AST that was a seriously great gigging amp!

     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2019
  12. Killed_by_Death

    Killed_by_Death Member

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    I'd suggest you take Bruce Egnater's course, build your own & then you'll know exactly how to work on it.
     
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  13. davidespinosa

    davidespinosa Supporting Member

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    @amdowell

    Mojotone also has amp-building classes.
     
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  14. DonP

    DonP Member

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    Mesa stuffs a lot of power (= weight) and features (= complexity) into a small package. You should be terrified looking inside of them.

    You would have to give all of this up and get a simple single channel low power Marshall (like the mentioned Studio 15).

    Is that something you would want to do?
     
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  15. amdowell

    amdowell Supporting Member

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    I would. Pedals these days are so good and so readily available.
     
  16. rickt

    rickt Gold Supporting Member

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    Reeves Custom 10HG. Pretty straight forward with a single EL34 power tube.
     
  17. Lef T

    Lef T Member

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    There's nothing terrifying about the insides of a Mesa
    IF
    You have a good Mesa tech.
    If you want an amp that you can work on yourself,that's another story.
     
  18. DonP

    DonP Member

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    I don't know about easy to work on, but the Monoprice 15 is based on a Marshall 2203 circuit, sounds like it to me, and at a price that you could buy two or three to keep around as spares.

    It also has an effect loop, and a low wattage mode. I've been very happy with mine right out of the box since fall last year when I got it for $145 shipped. It has plenty of gain so that I don't have to use a pedal if I don't want to.
     
  19. pickaguitar

    pickaguitar 2011 TGP Silver Medalist Silver Supporting Member

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    Don't look inside them. Then proceed to save money.

    /thread
     
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  20. davidespinosa

    davidespinosa Supporting Member

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    You mean nobody else has anything valuable to say ?
     
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