Mesa Mark I: Who has tried EL34s?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by les_paul, May 7, 2015.

  1. les_paul

    les_paul Member

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    555
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    I recently picked up a Mark I re-issue that came with 6V6s. Years ago I played one in a shop I worked in (almost every day) and it always had 6L6s. I know I liked my Rect-O-Verb more with EL34s even though the manual said that it was 'optimized' for 6L6s.

    Who here has tried it out?
     
  2. wildschwein

    wildschwein Member

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    Can it be done? I imagine some component values inside would need to be changed and of course the mandatory bias pot mod would also need to be added as Mesas are shipped with non-adjustable bias.
     
  3. les_paul

    les_paul Member

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    It says right in the Mark I re-issue manual that it can take 6L6, 6V6, and EL34.

    EDIT: 6V6 and EL34 can only be used in the Tweed mode.
     
  4. wildschwein

    wildschwein Member

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    So it's the reissue MK I? I didn't know they could do EL34s -- knew about the 6V6s in Tweed mode though.
     
  5. Stormin

    Stormin Supporting Member

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    I've owned multiple Mark I Reissues since the mid 90's - I still have 3 of them. I've tried 6L6, EL34 and 6V6 tubes in them for extended periods of time. For me, the 6V6s sound the best, followed by EL34s.

    To my ears, the 6V6 is a whole lot more Marshally than the EL34 in this amp. You get a combination of grind and chime out of them.

    FWIW, I run the amp into input 2 (non-cascaded) with volume 1 at 0, volume 2 at 4, master to taste, treble at 7, bass at 3, mids at either 3 or 5 (depending on what cabinet I'm using) and presence at 9. The reverb is usually between 2 and 3.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. les_paul

    les_paul Member

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    555
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    Awesome, thanks. Your settings are nearly identical to mine although I like to jack both of the volumes and run a moderate master just for fun.

    I think I'll take it to rehearsal this week and run it loud to see what's up.
     
  7. jujube

    jujube Member

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    EL34s will run very cold with this amp. Since the manual was written, Mesa now does not recommend using EL34s with this amp. The recent amp models have a bias switch.
     
  8. Stormin

    Stormin Supporting Member

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    I think your experience will depend a lot on what kind of tones your expecting to get out the Boogie. This amp is VERY influenced by cabinet and speaker choice. I prefer to get a more Marshally feel out of it, which means running it at the edge of breakup and using an overdrive pedal for distortion. I also get good results out of a greenback type speaker. For the high gain and Santana tones, a high efficiency speaker like an EVM works. For more Fender tones, a large open back cab makes a big difference.
     

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