Like a Blues Jr., but......

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by sam_spade, Dec 7, 2016.

  1. sam_spade

    sam_spade Member

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    I'm looking for a small light amp, weighing no more than a Blues Jr. But I want something with more headroom and less boxy sounding. Would like an effects loop also. Oh, and hopefully around the same price as a Blues Jr too.

    Anything good out there or am I stuck with my Blues Jr for now? I like the Fender Hotrod deluxe but it might be a little too heavy and higher $ also.

    Thanks for any good suggestions.
     
  2. David Garner

    David Garner Supporting Member

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    If you can find one used, the older (non-plus model) Mesa Express 5:25 1x10 is about the size of a Blues Jr, only marginally heavier, and gives you a ton of great sounding options. It has a loop.

    Unfortunately, they go for about double the price of a used Blues Jr. You can find them at $600-800 depending on how patient you want to be. I love mine, and I will likely never part with it just because it's so versatile.
     
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  3. s360guitarist

    s360guitarist Silver Supporting Member

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    Ampeg GVT15

    That's the rub though really, hard to find something better but for the same price...
     
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  4. Rockerduck

    Rockerduck Member

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    There is no tube amp that meets that criteria. I had to haul a Twin Reverb to get the cleans I wanted short of a stack, ten years ago. Only the Roland Cube 80gx I have can get loud cleans of my Twin, but sadly, Roland discontinued it. I have the Blues jr. tweed 3 that does cleans a lower volumes and has to be mic'd. I use a Pro jr. now at low volume and mic it.
     
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  5. Abram4235

    Abram4235 Supporting Member

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    Maybe try the new fender bassbreaker and see if you like that more. I tend to agree that it'll be tough to tick all of the boxes.
     
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  6. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    I had the exact same dilemma as you. I solved it with a Reverend Hellhound. You can find them used fairly regularly. This is what mine sounds like bluesy (1st video) and clean (2nd):



     
  7. IM4Tone

    IM4Tone Member

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    If you don't have a hangup on it being tube, the various Roland Cube models are very nice. Both the 40GX and 80GX are discontinued, but you can find one on ebay if you do a search and do it very soon (I just checked). Of course, there's always used as well.

    This Cube is a newer model and based on it's demos and other Cubes is worth 'test driving' @ GC or any other local shop where found in stock. It does NOT have an effects loop, but I've never found that to be a show stopper for me....in fact, I rarely use one on the amps I own that have one.
     
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  8. guitargeezer

    guitargeezer Silver Supporting Member

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    Actually, the Bugera V22 comes pretty close. More wattage and a little heavier than a BJr, but it is also EL84 and has an effects loop and actually costs less than a Blues Junior. If you're not wed to EL84 tubes, then the Blackstar Studio 20 is 20 watts with EL34s and a loop and is less than a Blues Jr, as is the Ibanez TSA-15 with 6V6 tubes. I "think" it has a loop, but not 100% on that.
     
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  9. Rockerduck

    Rockerduck Member

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    I own a TRRi, DRRI, Blues Jr. NOS, Roland Blues cube hot, Roland 80gx, 40gx and Pro jr. 3. I'm not the op.
     
  10. guitargeezer

    guitargeezer Silver Supporting Member

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    No, I know you weren't the OP. I was just reflecting on your opening statement that "there is no tube amp that meets that (the OP's) criteria", and attempting to offer the OP a few suggestions that were in the size range of a Blues Junior and which met most of his criteria. You do, however, have quite a nice selection of amps. :aok
     
  11. LordByron

    LordByron The Dude abides!

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    Get the Boss Katana 100W 112 Combo. Don't let the fact that it's SS fool you. This is a killer amp at a bargain price. It has totally replaced my NOS Tweed Jr. as my primary giging amp. It's cheaper, louder, and better sounding. Plus, it's got 4 channels, an FX loop, direct out, cab out, USB for (among other things) direct recording, built-in effects that sound very good (not something you hear often about an inexpensive SS modeling amp), and is compatible with an excellent 5 button switch for channel switching and tuning on and off effects. Leave preconceived notions behind and go check one out. It sounds good in the store at moderate volumes; it sounds great in public at louder volumes, it sounds killer once the speaker breaks in a little. :)
     
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  12. Blue Marvel

    Blue Marvel Member

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  13. Roccorobb

    Roccorobb Member

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    There are most certainly options. The Reverend hell hound was a great option if you can find one. The VHT Special 12/20 is exactly what you described:
    BJ price
    BJ size
    Much bigger sound
    More wattage and head room
    Great loop
     
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  14. lowpaygigs

    lowpaygigs Member

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    Tan shorts - check
    music stand - check
    Mustang Sally - check
    Unplugging guitar during song - check
     
  15. IM4Tone

    IM4Tone Member

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    :nono I'm very 'down' on the Bugera V22 due to my previous ownership of two (horrible fizzy overdrive and reliability issues on a very early model).
    :aok for the Blackstar HT20 (I replaced V1 w/ a 5751 to tame the gain)
    :aok The TSA-15 is a nice amp as well, although a bit quieter without the 'boost' "on". As for it's loop, it is not a loop in the conventional sense. It allows for the insertion of a signal between the tubescreamer and boost circuitry, but not between the preamp and amp as is the conventional configuration for most amps.
     
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  16. skunizzi

    skunizzi Member

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    First thing you need to do is to remove the chassis from your blues JR and put it into a pine 2x12 cabinet that you can get on eBay. I got a very nice one in tweed. Next you want to put in WGS ET-65 and a Retro 30 speakers. After that you want to install a new full size reverb tank. Once that is all done, your blues JR will sound like a million bucks!

    I did that to mine and it rocks!
     
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  17. RayBarbeeMusic

    RayBarbeeMusic Member

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    Does it have to be a combo?
     
  18. skunizzi

    skunizzi Member

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    Not really, you can use a 1x12 enclosure and simply plug into that too. The problem is the stock reverb tank is short and doesn't sound as good. Also having an open back is always better.
     
  19. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

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    Not giving a **** about any of that - check
     
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  20. IM4Tone

    IM4Tone Member

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    OR.... convert it to a head and play through a 2X12 of your choice. (BTW, I never had issues w/ it's reverb) The improvement is major.
    I've shown this pic a number of times here before:
    [​IMG]
     

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