Marshall 2203 or 2204 - Which is better?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by guitarman1956, Jul 2, 2006.


  1. guitarman1956

    guitarman1956 Supporting Member

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    Which is better? And, your reasons why?

    thanks
     
  2. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Well I like em both. The 2203 is absolutely great when stood next to a few other stacks and they all are breakfest but the 2203 is a bit much at rehearsal. The 2204 getting that slot much better.

    I've been using a 2203 with a large Bogner 2x12 and been thinking about hunting down a 4010 (that number may not be right) which is the 2204 in a combo form for a smaller sounding version of what I have now.

    Of coarse I took a detour by route of a Flexi.
     
  3. clunk

    clunk Member

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    2203 has more headroom and if you can tolerate the decibal level, to me anyway, sounds better. But for practical applications 2204 is more suited for most players. It all depends how you use them though. If you are going for an absolute clean sound and getting all your OD from pedals then i personally would go for a 2203. But if your going for shear volume and using a pedal for a boost then i would go for a 2204.

    Clunk
     
  4. BadAssBill

    BadAssBill southofnash.com Silver Supporting Member

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    People are going to tell you the 100 watt has more clean headroom, fullness...yada yada. If I were a touring musician playing stadiums maybe I'd have one too. The reality is...100 watts is blisteringly loud. To use the rocking natural distortion of a 2204 you would have to be in a very large club if not attenuated. When my band plays large bars...I'm lucky if I can get up to 4 on the volume. With a 100 watter I doubt I could go much above 2.
     
  5. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    I owned a very early, one owner 100w for about 2 months-it was just too loud to get up to the sweet spot-much louder and more sterile than my metal panel 100w or Park MV 100w. I now have an 83 50w version that I can crank to the sweet spot in the basement and really enjoy. Plugged into the low input I can get enough clean overhead for an outdoor country gig-so seems to me the best of both worlds. I can't imagine what kind of stage you'd need to use a 100w without an attenuator (well, I can-Alice Coopers new tour with 6 412 cabs on each side of the stage).
     
  6. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    You are correct sir!! I've had my 2204 since the mid-late 80's and its 50 watts are louder than any of my other amps.. 4 is MAX and that's into a 1/12 or lower volume 2/12 and playing heavy music in bars!

    ERIC
     
  7. TheGuildedAge

    TheGuildedAge Supporting Member

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    I have the 50 watter, it's brutally loud, even with an attenuator, most clubs don't need that much volume.

    I find 100 watters bassier, 50 watters smoother. I prefer 50 watters.

    I would love to find the JCM800 crunch in a 25-30 watt head.
     
  8. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    Wheres the love?

    I agree with the comments about the 2203 being too loud for some applications. Most of the Gigs we end up playing are outside and I have no problem playing mine cranked with very very little of my guitar in the PA.

    My biggest complaint about mine is its just a little on the heavey side. Thats why I'd like a smaller version thats more portable and easier to grab and go.

    Also its good to have the might of these things when you need it. If I'm in a situation with another half stack near by its a bit of a luxury to be able to step on the throttle and leave the rest in the dust. You glance back at the 2203 and see little fangs coming out of its smile. :Devil

    First thing I do is set the Drums up in the PA and I make em Thunder. Then I bring up the Bass Guitar to mach em. Then I set my Marshall with the Preamp Volume Dimed and the Master on about 6 or 7. I just roll my guitar volume back and adjust as needed. I then set the vocals to soar above all else and then we play. :BEER

    Of coarse my 2203 has had some Negative Feedback Tweaks to make it Sing Sooner. :BluesBros
     
  9. guitarman1956

    guitarman1956 Supporting Member

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    I really wished I could use the overdrive of my 2204 amp, but being a single channel, I find the effects I use (chorus/delay) get distorted. The rule as I understand it is to run the overdrive first, and the effects after that. Can't do it with a single channel 2204. Or, can you???

    Anyone using effects without them being distorted? If so, which ones?
     
  10. BadAssBill

    BadAssBill southofnash.com Silver Supporting Member

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    Red...that must be a lot of fun. I've never come close to playing with a band at full volume with mine.
    What kind of cab do you play through? I see your in GA....do you have any gig dates coming up?
     
  11. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I use a 2x12 Large Bogner with a couple of V30's in it. It does sound good. Like I say it works well outside with hardly no guitar in the PA. I believe we have two tentative gigs coming up soon. One is at the end of July up in Ellijay Ga. The other I'm not sure about the location. Maybe Woodstock I think.
     
  12. Red Planet

    Red Planet Member

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    I should say my 2203 is slightly customised. Heres some pics. Mine has a PTP Turret Board installed with some tweaks to the NFB Circuit.




    [​IMG]

    Here is the old board that came out of it.

    [​IMG]


    More Pics



    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  13. CJReaper

    CJReaper Member

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    I have a 2204 and I have used a 2203 right next to it. The 2203 does have more clean headroom but not that much. Also, a 2203 is only about 6 db louder than a 2204, so both are very, very loud. In fact when I had the volume on the 2203 at 5 I only needed to set the 2204 volume to 6 in order to match it. Personally I prefer the 2204 but I'd take a 2203 as well, they both kick ass.

    Cheers,

    CJ
     
  14. darko

    darko Member

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    You mean 3 db louder? 6 db will be by 200w amp (compared to 50w amp).
     
  15. CJReaper

    CJReaper Member

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    DOH!! Yeah, 3 db, thanks.

    Cheers,

    CJ
     
  16. Roodboy

    Roodboy Supporting Member

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    You need to get a hotplate and run he lineout into your effects then into a power amp then into your wet cabinet.
    Or set the amp to edge of breakup and put your time based effecst in front and whack the amp with an Od/boost/dist pedal for heavier stuff.
     
  17. myles111

    myles111 Member

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  18. sparkle**

    sparkle** Member

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    You could install a Post phase inverter master.... Dial in the sound and bring down the volume with that...

    As far as 100 vs 50 watters... 100 have more "depth or bottom" to them while the 50 seems a little more "midy" the fisty gains quicker...but they are both loud....

    I have a cameron modded 3 channel 100 watt marshall which sounds amazing..... Mark's masters are great an t a very low volume....

     
  19. guitarman1956

    guitarman1956 Supporting Member

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    Is the overdrive better on one or the other?
     
  20. jezzzz2003

    jezzzz2003 Member

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    Hey Red,

    Your old circuit board looks just like mine except I have a 1987x.
    The board even says ST-1
    Whats up with that?
     

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