Man, I love my Satellite!!!!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by RGB, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    Been gigging the crap out of my Neutron and I gotta say, what a great little amp! Sounds completely different than any other 18 watter I've played, which is really a good thing since it compliments my Reinhardt perfectly. Together the two are dynamite, but I did a couple of shows with just the Neutron this past week, (due to space constraints), and it is just an absolute joy to make music with this amp! Can't say enough how much I love the tone. Volume and tone controls are all that's needed on this puppy....fat, chewy, ballsy, and crunchy to super smooth all from the guitar volume with no pedals needed, (although a Keeley SD-1 is a perfect match for searing lead tones). I've posted about this amp before, but did you ever have a show where the sound was just so sweet that you had to tell somebody!:D

    I'd highly recommend that anyone in the market for an EL84 amp, hold off on buying anything until you've had a chance to hear a Satellite!....(and if you can swing two amps, add a Reinhardt to the mix for every tonal variation that you can imagine)! I gotta get some clips up!

    Thanks again, Adam!
     
  2. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    Anytime. Thanks for the compliments. Took a month off from working to have a baby, but we're back in full swing. Trying to get more amps in more stores. And we're having a booth at NAMM to try and show our stuff to more people (and some new amps that will be announced then).
     
  3. msgdsrf

    msgdsrf Member

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    Tell us more...
    How is it different from any other 18W types?
     
  4. Knuckles

    Knuckles Member

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    Throwing in my $.02 worth:

    Just saw Mike Ness (Social Distortion) on his most recent solo tour and his guitarist Johnny Wickersham (also of S.D.) was running a Satellite - not 100 percent sure of the model.

    Damn, damn damn did it sound good, especially when he plugged in his late 50's Junior.

    You make cool amps, Mr. Satellite.
     
  5. homebrewer99

    homebrewer99 Member

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    RGB-

    Thanks for the review. I have been keeping an eye on Satellite for a little while now. Would love to hear one. Adam has been very helpful with technical questions on TGP, and I trust that he takes the same care with the amps he builds.

    RGB Lets see some pics/clips of that monster!!!

    cheers,
    homebrewer
     
  6. studiodunn

    studiodunn Member

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    very cool amps. I love the simplicity.
     
  7. Frankee

    Frankee Wartime Consigliere

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    Wow, down the street!.........(Kensington guy here)
     
  8. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    I guess Adam would be better qualified to answer this, but I think it has a lot to do with the 5Y3 rectifier, which seems to give the amp it's almost tweed-like qualities.....early breakup with not much clean headroom, but so touch sensitive that the sweetest cleans can be coaxed from it by using picking dynamics. I guess if you needed more clean headroom, Adam's 36 watter would be a better choice, but if, like me, you play a lot of small venues where low volume is required but you still want to be able to get those tubes cooking, the Neutron is perfect. I've had situations where I was doing a show outdoors and the Neutron didn't have quite enough by itself, but that's where my Reinhardt 18 comes in. The two together have more than enough power and volume to cover a loud outdoor show. Something about the way the two amps couple that really seems to increase the output....again, I'm sure Adam could elaborate on why this is...I'm no expert, by any stretch, but I know what I like!

    If I were going to use just one amp, I'd go with the 36w Atom or even the 50w EL34 Omega. I saw Rontrose of Supersuckers fame using the Atom, I believe, and that's what made me call Adam....what a rockin' tone he had!...and plenty of volume lemme tell ya!

    But if you're looking for an amp that really gives it up early on the volume knob at a lower volume, (or for the perfect studio rig), or if like me, you run two amps in a wet/dry setup, I'd highly recommend checking out the Neutron. It's really taken the place of an OD in my rig. Where the Reinhardt has much more clean headroom with it's GZ34 rectifier, (that famed Reinhardt "bark"!), and adds the sparkle and chime to the wet side, the Neutron has this swampy sort of growl with a big low end going on that just works perfectly for the dirty/dry side of my setup....although the Neutron has a lot of chime in it's top end as well. It's hard for me to describe, I guess. The controls are the same, (volume and tone), and the breakup starts at about the same level as Dr Z's Ghia, (just to give an example and the Ghia uses a 5Y3 too), but it sounds completely different from the Ghia I owned, (and sold). Much smoother without the rattiness that I noticed with the Ghia. All I know is, I'm really enjoying every show these days thanks to Adam and Bob. What a great time to be a gigging guitarist!

    I'll try to get some pix and clips up soon, although my Neutron is an early model, built before Adam started using his current faceplates, so the new amps probably have a different look. Mine is very simple looking, and I love it that way! My wife took a little video at our show yesterday, so maybe some of that will turn out.

    Hope that helps a bit!
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2008
  9. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    Thanks for all the great things. Jonny 2Bags is playing an Atom (two on stage, and also a Neutron for the studio). Rontrose has a lot of them, lways an Atom, sometimes any of the other models. I would say the majority of pro players are using the Atom, with the Neutron and the Omega tied. That's changing with some of the other models (the Proton high gain model, and the newly revamped Omega 2, both 50 watt-ish).

    As for why our 18w is different than some of the other 18w style amps is a lot of little things that all add up to how the amp responds. The rectifier does play a bit of a part to how the responsiveness and touch sensitivity are. You can swap out and use a GZ34 or a solid state rectifier to get more headroom if you need it. We can also put in a rectifier switch if someone thinks they will use it. We fine tuned a lot of the voltages a bit differently than most people expect to create a tone I was happy with. I've got a number of different 18w style amps that I drew on for inspiration to come up with my own version. (if you ever have a chance, the Selmer version that predates the Marshall and the Watkins is highly recommended).

    The Atom is similar to the Neutron, but with more power, more of a range, more headroom, more bass room. Switchable rectifier adds a bit more of an instant tonal option. I like to think it keeps some of the chunk ability, while maintaining a great lead screaming tone.

    One thing I do like to do is to use transformers that have more available power to them than is needed for the amp. I don't think I can credit all the tone of the amps to that, but it is something that does make a difference to me.

    Still living in Normal Heights, but moved the shop over off Morena Blvd. Let me know if you ever want to swing by and check things out. We've got a nice live room to just let loose and play loud.

    I do like to think that the people that are our customers are more than just that. More of a huge family. Weird, but true. We offer lifetime guarantees on everything we make. We will custom make anything. And we will work with local stores to try and get them into a store near you if there aren't any nearby to test them out.

    Thanks again for all the compliments. Let me know if there is anything else I can help with.
     
  10. msgdsrf

    msgdsrf Member

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    Adam, Thanks for the extra info.

    RGB, could you compare the tone attributes of the Satellite to your Rienhardt for us... would love to hear about it some more.
     
  11. CaptainJake

    CaptainJake Member

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    I saw the Supersuckers play a little over a year ago, I stood in front of the Satellite the entire show, it sounded great
     
  12. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    Well, they're so different that it's hard to compare them. Also, one is a master volume amp and the other isn't. They do have similarities like, huge low end, nice chime and great crunch, but the Neutron with the 5Y3 is a bit softer/looser/more compressed and rounder sounding than the Reinhardt. I did try the Neutron out with a GZ34 as Adam touched on and it really did tighten up the amp and added clean headroom....kinda moved it towards the Reinhardt's response....but I liked it so much with the 5Y3 that I put it right back in. The Reinhardt is less compressed and tighter. It also seems to have more volume on tap...volume, not gain....the Neutron has more gain and when cranked can get more compressed than the Reinhardt, but never flubby or farty in the low end like a Fender Tweed Deluxe can get. I play both amps through Marshall 1965 4x10 cabs for the most part, but I also have a matching Reinhardt 1x12 and a Theile ported Sonic G112 that I use for lower volume indoor shows....both cabs are loaded with Scumback H75 LHDC 16HP's right now, but I also have Bob's R65's and those sound amazing as well.

    I think Bob's 18 has more like a Plexi type feel, where the Neutron has this sound that's hard to find an example for....kind of has a sound of it's own. I wish I was better able to describe things technically, but all I can do is try to voice my impressions and, of course, we all know how subjective tone is. I love both amps for what they can do AND for their differences.....the best of two different worlds!

    My best advice would be to visit Adam if you can, or get your local Mom & Pop store to give Adam a call and see if they can't get a few amps for you to try out. If all else fails, try to catch one of the artists that are using Satellites when they come to your area. That's how I found this amp and I guess I owe Rontrose a big thank you as well!

    I have an Omega in my future plans too!! :D
     
  13. msgdsrf

    msgdsrf Member

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    Excellent, Thanks. Thanks for increasing my GAS...
     
  14. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    You're welcome! :D
     
  15. SatelliteAmps

    SatelliteAmps Member

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    Thanks for the great description.

    I like to think that our amps all have a sound of their own. None of them are direct clones of anything. (actually, there are three tweed Deluxe clones that exist with our name on them, but it isn't something that will ever be on a production list. Probably won't build any more. Too many other people doing a great job of it.)

    I started recording some new clips that I will post in the next week or so. I will post them in the Manufacturers forum.

    There are some live clips and some actual videos (and direct sound clips from albums) that can be found on youtube. I'm not actually sure if I can provide links on this forum. Don't want to step on any toes.

    Thanks again, and let me know if there are any other questions I can help with.
     
  16. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    You're welcome too, Adam!

    Hey, I have a request.....could you explain what's going on when two amps are run together in a wet/dry configuration? Specifically, why is there such a pronounced volume boost for both amps?...perceived anyway. I notice that if I switch either amp off while the other is running, the active amp gets much quieter, or seems to. My Lehle Dual has an output pot to reduce the levels of the amps when they're being run in tandem, so I guess this must be a well known phenomenon, but I figure you can probably put it into a context that we can understand.

    Also, have you toyed with the idea of power scaling your amps?....especially the Omega? :D

    Thanks for your help!
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2008
  17. redtoploader

    redtoploader Member

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    Boy, i've been toying around with the idea of getting one of these for some time. First I thought I wanted an Atom but now I'm thinking Neutron, with the abilty to switch rectifiers. 2xel84s with a 5y3 is a cool combo....bet a 5v4 in there would be cool too.

    Adam, can it be put in a 2x12 combo?

    Also, were you speaking of the Selmer Stadium earlier? Cool amps.
     
  18. sickboy79

    sickboy79 Member

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    Great stuff - Satellites! I've only heard them live - Social D and the Supersuckers - but, they are definetely on my list of amps to pick up one of these days!
     
  19. I'm Incinerator

    I'm Incinerator Supporting Member

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    Wow, the neutron sounds awesome. I've been looking for something with a tweed-like feel with out the low end flubiness to compliment my Tophat Club Royale, which is also along the lines of an 18 watt, but with strong AC15/30 TB flavors.

    how are the "on the edge" tones of the neutron? From the way you described things, it does seem like an amp I may need to keep in mind. A shop here in town carries Satellites, I may have to check them out.
     
  20. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

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    If you're referring to the edge of breakup, I get there with the guitar volume and I'm sure the guitar and pickups have a lot to do with what I'm getting, but it sounds great to me. Doesn't thin out or get muddy....just cleans up a bit. I run both volume and tone at about 75% most of the time and just control everything with my guitar's volume and tone controls.

    My old '83 Strat has Vintage Vibe SP90's in it and sounds especially sweet with the Neutron!

    I wish I could get the local Mom and Pop to bring in some Satellites so I could play the other models, but they're afraid that boutique stuff is hard to move in a smaller market like Green Bay.....Although, I intend to show up down there with the Neutron and let them hear it in person. That may tip the scales!
     

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