Mesa Fillmore gain channel?

fatbagg

Member
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3,278
So most clips of this amp sound badass!

What are everyone’s opinion on it, and especially how is the gain channel? How much, what’s the overall tonality and dynamic, and where does it fit with the TC and Mark V around?
 

saltydogg

Rock & Roll Enthusiast
Platinum Supporting Member
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7,391
I’m hoping my 50W combo arrives tomorrow, and I’ll have an idea for you. I believe it has less available gain than the TC and your average “Mark gain”. I could be wrong though...
 

fatbagg

Member
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3,278
I’m hoping my 50W combo arrives tomorrow, and I’ll have an idea for you. I believe it has less available gain than the TC and your average “Mark gain”. I could be wrong though...

I’ve been wanting a tc, but spoke to a store not too long ago and they said the same, that it was like TC gain, but a bit less, while more rounded like a classic mark.
 

Jab_Guitar

Member
Messages
4,005
So most clips of this amp sound badass!

What are everyone’s opinion on it, and especially how is the gain channel? How much, what’s the overall tonality and dynamic, and where does it fit with the TC and Mark V around?

Its a different gain structure for sure. With a pedal you could probably get it into a heavier distortion, but its very much a vintage high gain sound. If you want a more modern metal sound I would recommend the TC or Mark. The Fillmore is an awesome amp, but I really think its best if you're after more old school sounds.
 

fatbagg

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3,278
Its a different gain structure for sure. With a pedal you could probably get it into a heavier distortion, but its very much a vintage high gain sound. If you want a more modern metal sound I would recommend the TC or Mark. The Fillmore is an awesome amp, but I really think its best if you're after more old school sounds.

What’s the tonal difference in the sounds of the gain channels, TC and Fillmore, aside from amount?

My favorite Mesas are IC+, Mark IV, mark I, Lonestar.
 

Jab_Guitar

Member
Messages
4,005
What’s the tonal difference in the sounds of the gain channels, TC and Fillmore, aside from amount?

My favorite Mesas are IC+, Mark IV, mark I, Lonestar.

Totally different. Its a mix of Fender/Lonestar and maybe some very early Mark sounds.. but to me its not a metal amp at all. Really good for cleans, light to medium overdrive and a more vintage distortion. Its voiced very different than any other current Mesa and fills the niche of having a simple 'old school' amp. Its got the classic 6L6 breakup basically. Just go listen to the demos, it sounds nothing like a current Mark or the TC or Dual Rec or basically any of those higher gain amps.
 

fatbagg

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Messages
3,278
Sounds about right. The higher Gain mesas tend to be my least favorite. I like the ‘classic boogie’ tone, and the demos sound like this amp kind of hits that oldschool thing.

Sounds like an amp I’d want to put a TS type OD in front of I wanted more gain and get a solid classic rock (one the more Fender side of camp) tone.
 

Ryno1331

Silver Supporting Member
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3,282
It's definitely way different than my Mark V. I wish I could describe it but in simple terms it sounds old school, not modern at all. It also feels a lot softer to play than a mark.
It's built for very nice cleans and 60s/70s rock/hard rock. The tone stack is much easier to use and classic vs a mark amp. Finally, others mileage may vary, but I don't think either is great for very low volumes. To really get the tone from a Fillmore at higher gain you need to move the speakers a little.
 
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1,207
I have the 50 and 100 fillmores in combos with creambacks. Plenty of gain on tap in hi mode with gain at 3 clock to dimed. Plenty of gain. It takes on different characteristics on different gain settings and the 3 modes do overlap at some points, according to my manual. If you are looking to shred you will probably be disappointed because it doesnt track like my Mark V on channel 3 or your Diezels and whatever high gain monster you have now. Looser bottom and a more vintage voicing, especially with the creambacks instead of the C90 speakers.

I just got the 100 the other day and have been going back and forth and i think i will keep both because there is enough of a difference. The 50 has a sweeter clean and high gain sounds juicier individual notes but the 100 sounds pretty massive for heavy rhythm tones and drop d tuning. Its definitely more modern sound than the 50 but still has vintage voicing. Its like it has both melded together. Love this amp. So ****ing nice. I might just get the 25 watt version too as thats the most vintage and smooth tones of the series.

I have to add that i have been running the 100 on 4 ohm input on the 100 and there is a difference between that and running into to correct 8 ohm input. Mesa said its a safe mismatch, i called them on it to be sure. I have the 50 on 8 ohm input, but havent tried the 4 ohm yet. I do prefer the 100 in 4 ohm instead of 8 ohm. Especially on the middle tight gain channel. It sounds thicker and less biting treble.

I have always been a metalhead and still enjoy my Mark V and Engls and this has plenty of gain for me, just a different flavor that makes me play different styles. I guess im getting old....
 
Messages
1,207
It's definitely way different than my Mark V. I wish I could describe it but in simple terms it sounds old school, not modern at all. It also feels a lot softer to play than a mark.
It's built for very nice cleans and 60s/70s rock/hard rock. The tone stack is much easier to use and classic vs a mark amp. Finally, others mileage may vary, but I don't think either is great for very low volumes. To really get the tone from a Fillmore at higher gain you need to move the speakers a little.
I would say on the 50 Fillmore it definitely needs more volume to get going for mid to high gain but on 25 watt setting it does sound good at bedroom volumes. The 100 does low volumes better. I can run it on 100 watt and still sounds pretty good low close to bedroom volumes. The 50, if you can play that loud, really takes on a different tone with the master cranked above 2 oclock. The brightness is gone and it fills out. The 100 i havent gotten that loud yet, mainly because of the creamback 65 im worried cant handle it. Still, right now if i had to choose between the 50 and 100, i think the 100 doesnt need to be loud to sound great, at least to me so i would prefer that. Plus it sounds a little more modern with more grind yet still vintage. But i will keep them both. ****ing great amps. Definitely on my top 5 all time list over 39 years of hacking/ playing.
 

fatbagg

Member
Messages
3,278
I have the 50 and 100 fillmores in combos with creambacks. Plenty of gain on tap in hi mode with gain at 3 clock to dimed. Plenty of gain. It takes on different characteristics on different gain settings and the 3 modes do overlap at some points, according to my manual. If you are looking to shred you will probably be disappointed because it doesnt track like my Mark V on channel 3 or your Diezels and whatever high gain monster you have now. Looser bottom and a more vintage voicing, especially with the creambacks instead of the C90 speakers.

I just got the 100 the other day and have been going back and forth and i think i will keep both because there is enough of a difference. The 50 has a sweeter clean and high gain sounds juicier individual notes but the 100 sounds pretty massive for heavy rhythm tones and drop d tuning. Its definitely more modern sound than the 50 but still has vintage voicing. Its like it has both melded together. Love this amp. So ****ing nice. I might just get the 25 watt version too as thats the most vintage and smooth tones of the series.

I have to add that i have been running the 100 on 4 ohm input on the 100 and there is a difference between that and running into to correct 8 ohm input. Mesa said its a safe mismatch, i called them on it to be sure. I have the 50 on 8 ohm input, but havent tried the 4 ohm yet. I do prefer the 100 in 4 ohm instead of 8 ohm. Especially on the middle tight gain channel. It sounds thicker and less biting treble.

I have always been a metalhead and still enjoy my Mark V and Engls and this has plenty of gain for me, just a different flavor that makes me play different styles. I guess im getting old....

This is exactly what I wanted to hear! I’m not a huge fan of super tight amp, I like an amp to feel like it bends with me!
 

Ryno1331

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,282
I would say on the 50 Fillmore it definitely needs more volume to get going for mid to high gain but on 25 watt setting it does sound good at bedroom volumes. The 100 does low volumes better. I can run it on 100 watt and still sounds pretty good low close to bedroom volumes. The 50, if you can play that loud, really takes on a different tone with the master cranked above 2 oclock. The brightness is gone and it fills out. The 100 i havent gotten that loud yet, mainly because of the creamback 65 im worried cant handle it. Still, right now if i had to choose between the 50 and 100, i think the 100 doesnt need to be loud to sound great, at least to me so i would prefer that. Plus it sounds a little more modern with more grind yet still vintage. But i will keep them both. ****ing great amps. Definitely on my top 5 all time list over 39 years of hacking/ playing.
Interesting regarding the 100. Would love to try one someday but I don't even think there's a Mesa dealer in my state.
By the way I should've mentioned mine is the 25 so that's what my experience comes from.
 

Mark Al

Member
Messages
1,537
I played a Fillmore 50 today, the drive and high gain settings feels quite soft, and in 25 watt mode it feels way too soft for me... I much prefer the Mark V 35 besides it for drive or gain sound.

The clean in Fillmore 50 sounds big and Fendery, and its reverb is quite nice too. But I was let down a bit by the feel of its drive and high gain settings. They perhaps sounds OK, but feel not good to my taste.
 

plan-x

Member
Messages
2,477
I'm loving this amp (Fillmore 25 head). Was playing early VH in the high mode. The tone was awesome. Doing Eddies 2 hand pull offs ala Eruption. This amp shreds! This ain't just a mild mannered black face, tweed, surfer amp. This thing gets up and boogies!
 

rck

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,262
I’ve doing a pretty comprehensive comparison between the TC-50 and Fillmore 50 gain channels and heres my take.

The TC-50 Red Channel has a very fast response. Great for leads for me, of course I’ve been using this amp for over a year too.

The Fillmore 50 Hi Gain mode is pretty close to the fast response of the TC. Not as fast or immediate. I am seeing how close I can get to using the Drive mode of the Fillmore 50 and hitting it with a TS to tighten up the feel and tame the bottom end and see how close that is to the TC-50.

The Fillmore def has a softer feel overall.

The Clean Channel for me is no comparison, I much prefer the Fillmore 50. In fact the Clean of the Fillmore is my fav of any Mesa amp I’ve owned: Express 550+ and TC-50. The TA-15 and TA-30 have great Vox cleans too BTW.

They both work well at low volumes for me.

The TC-50 def can get louder.
 

Jab_Guitar

Member
Messages
4,005
Sounds about right. The higher Gain mesas tend to be my least favorite. I like the ‘classic boogie’ tone, and the demos sound like this amp kind of hits that oldschool thing.

Sounds like an amp I’d want to put a TS type OD in front of I wanted more gain and get a solid classic rock (one the more Fender side of camp) tone.

Yeah this is how you can use it. One of the things that stands out with it is how clear the bass sounds on the Fillmore. Like even you as turn it up more, it doesn't become muddy/flubby like a lot of other amps can.. so they really nailed that type of voice. Definitely an amp that will work good for using pedals with as well.
 

ShaunzNoiz

Member
Messages
204
I'm torn between this amp and a Marl I reissue. I played the Fillmore 50 and it is an amazing amp, but it didn't have the bottom end thump that the Mark had. I'm wondering whether or not the Fillmore 100 will give me that bottom end that I found a little lacking in the 50. Thoughts?
 

caspergomez

Member
Messages
440
ok, I can answer my own question about the Fillmore 25 head paired with a 4x10 cab. It is killer. I am using a mix of 2 each weber 10a125 and 10f125 and its cooler than the other side of the pillow. I caved and bought the head the other day. this 4x10 cab sounds really dynamic with all three modes on the Fillmore25. It has a really greasy spongey sag to it on the drive and high modes. this is why I ended up going with the 25 over the 50 (which is a killer amp as well).

so far I have auditioned it with with a 2x12 open back cab loaded with Jupiter 12LC's. this combination sounds like the best deluxe reverb I ever heard, only bigger. the jupiters have a really sweet high end with big rounded lows that keep pretty tight. The clean mode is like heaven with this speaker combination. can't imagine anything better. when the gain is pushed on this setting to about 2 o'clock it starts getting some really good compression and just a little bit aggressive. good pick attack control for sure. I like the drive mode on these speakers a lot. one thing I notice is that you gotta be willing to ignore where the tone controls are on the dial and just use your ears. your eyes will fool you on this amp.

I tried a 1x12 closed back cab with Scumback M75 as well. that combo is so easy to dial a sound in on the drive and high modes. love it. the mids are really smooth with the M75 and this amp. the amp seems to like drive pedals with the M75 better than the other speakers I have tried thus far.

I have a Jensen blackbird alnico that I want to try with it. Just haven't had time yet. something tells me that this combination is going to be the one that I will want to gig this amp with.
 




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