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Mesa Mark IV

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Wizard of Ozz, Jul 30, 2006.

  1. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    I received my brand spankin new 2006 Mesa MKIV medium head a few days ago. Surprisingly it only took about 30 days to arrive from Mesa after being special ordered. That’s fast service in my book! It’s pretty rare to find one of these new in a store, so I pretty much had to buy blind in order to try. I played a MKIV a few years back, but I never really tried one again since. I immediately dialed in some great tones and was thoroughly impressed with the tone. I mainly bought this amp for the lead tone and I’m not disappointed. This is a very tight/focused amp, especially with the eq engaged on the lead channel. Those who compare it to a VHT UL are not far off. It is not as quite as tight/focused as my old VHT UL… but, it’s close. The MKIV has a bit more saturation and juiciness to its tone.

    The MKIV has a great cutting lead tone that holds together extremely well considering how much gain is on tap. Anyone worrying about whether these amps have enough gain can be assured they have gain to spare. It’s definitely a high gain monster. However, it has a very different overall voicing from the Recto. The clean channel was also a nice surprise. It has a big, open clean tone with plenty of headroom and little to no breakup when driven hard. More than a "useable clean", it actually sounds great and has plenty of volume to spare. I haven't spend much time with R2 yet, but it seems to be a pretty straightforward semi-dirty rhythm tone (blues to classic rock).

    The main selling point of this amp IMHO is the lead channel with EQ engaged (in the classic scooped “V” pattern). The lead channel does not disappoint and easily provides the familiar Metallica tones of old (AJFA, Black album, etc.). Whitesnake & Petrucci fans will also be in for a treat as well. Solos are a breeze, and the amp easily keeps up with the fastest runs. Also this amp is pretty loud when run flat out on full power; it’s one loud mofo. When you cut the power in Tweed mode and switch to triode power, the volume is more manageable and the sound is definitely sweeter. I know many people claim this is a tweaker’s amp or you need to be a rocket scientist to use one, but I simply have not found this to be the case. I did some homework prior to getting mine, and with all the settings you can find online, there really aren’t as tough to dial in as you might think. Overall I’m really happy I decided to give the MKIV a shot.

    If anyone has any tips, tricks, or settings feel free to share!


    :dude
     
  2. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    A few gratuitous porn pics:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    :dude
     
  3. scottywompas

    scottywompas Member

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    I love my MKIV although it took me a while to get r2 dialed in. It came around for me when I swapped the mesa pre amp tubes for gt12ax7s. It's a gread versitile amp. I love the high gain stuff I get out of it but the clean and crunch stuff is really good too.

    My advice would be to get a notebook and write down things you like as you play with it IE.. R2 better with pentode or lead too compressed in tweed power etc..

    there are so many options that you can find a hundred good sounds in it but you will never remember what you did half the time.


    Scott
     
  4. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    why the scooped V on the EQ wizz ? Mids are where the heart of the music is imo , or are you playing a lot of metallica with that amp ?

    They`ll be screaming sellout over at your Marshall Board if they find out LOL

    Good luck with the new amp, Ive heard walter trout make a mk4 boog positively bleed tone.

    Jimmy
     
  5. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    Writing down the settings is a good idea. I'm also going to try a few different preamp tubes as well. Thanks.
     
  6. markom89

    markom89 Senior Member

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    could you please show a close up of where you have the knobs dialed in, and how you have yours set up.???...Id like to see how other MK IV owners set their amp up...
     
  7. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    Yup... lots and lots of Metallica :D.

    Still have my Marshalls, but I'm always looking for something different. I'm impressed so far.
     
  8. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    These are the current settings I'm using I got them from someone I know on another board:

    [​IMG]

    They really helped my dial in a great tone quickly.
     
  9. LavaMan

    LavaMan Gold Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the club. I have owned a Mark IV combo since '91. The one I have now I bought in '00 and they are fantastic amps. 100's of gigs never let me down!
     
  10. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    Crikey, what a lot of controls ill bet some of those are push - pull too, im an OFF / ON sorta bloke myself, the only knob twiddling I get involved in involves my wife......:rotflmao

    Jimmy
     
  11. TieDyedDevil

    TieDyedDevil Member

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    Yah, M/B seems to be pretty good about special orders. I had to order my Mark IV from the factory (not buying blind, though, I had had a chance to play a couple) and they delivered ahead of their promised date.

    Tips:

    Make sure you have enough light on stage to see the controls. They can be difficult to find in the heat of a performance.

    If you use the R2 channel, dial that in first and then live with whatever compromise you have to make on your R1 sound. You'll go nuts trying to do it the other way `round.

    Experiment with the channel volume and master volume controls. I found that the amp sounded better with the master volume set at 3 or higher even if that meant bringing down the channel volumes to compensate.

    Put another couple hundred bucks into different power tubes so you can experiment. Four 6V6s is very nice, as is a mix of 6L6 and EL34.

    Have a couple of spare 12AX7s on hand. They're the only tubes I've had fail in a Boogie amp.

    The reverb is subtle compared to a Fender. But if it seems unusually weak, try replacing the 12AX7 that drives the reverb tank. That tube is pushed pretty hard in the Boogie circuit.

    It's important to hit the amp with as much high-end as you can. Make sure you use a short low-capacitance cable between guitar and amp, and minimize the number of pedals in that chain. Use the FX loop for as many pedals as you can.

    Until you really get used to the amp, it doesn't hurt to write down your settings. But don't be afraid to experiment, either. Follow your ears.
     
  12. markom89

    markom89 Senior Member

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    Am I the only one that thinks that the MK IV has awsome clean sounds???... to be honest with you guys, thats really all I use it for, and I use pedals to get me gain and stuff. I know its not the best clean amp out there, but its what I use. I sometimes use channel 2, rarely do I use the lead channel. I also can get some nice jazz tones out of it, and can get a great wet sound with the reverb on 8...or 10...
     
  13. scottywompas

    scottywompas Member

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    That's only half of it. The back panel has loads of swithces and jacks and a few more knobs. I felt like I had to go to NASA for help on how to operat it. ultimately it is pretty simple. Its really just controls for one ampX3. treat each channel like a separate amp and you are golden. there are a few global settings to deal with but they primarily involve the power section.

    Scott
     
  14. MusicGearGuys

    MusicGearGuys Member

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    Gee Scotty, I knew that I'd find you here.:dude

    Great amps that can cover allot of grounds and vast tones.

    Not my thing. But thats only because I am to stupid and lazy to figure out the controls.:D

    Gregory
     
  15. CNOTE

    CNOTE Member

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    I live close to NASA. So, put the Mark IV on a plane and I'll look into it for youwhen it gets here. I'll pay for a first class seat.:dude I'll even throw in an old oil drillers log book so you can have your settings written in style.
     
  16. angelo

    angelo Member

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    Congrats and enjoy. 100's of gigs here too. Owned mine since '93.


    I think the manual (at least the old one) leads one down the wrong road by suggesting "pull shift" should be out in R2 and Lead. To me, the whole thing comes to life with those pushed in. More highs and lows.

    I add some mids and lows to the lead channel and a bit more mids to the V as I use the EQ for a lead boost in all channels (that middle fader basically acts as a volume control). Other than that --- very close to my settings.

    Enjoy
     
  17. scottywompas

    scottywompas Member

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    Dude you can't keep me away from a mesa thread if you dressed me in a meat suit and threw me in a cage full of half starved lions with a firecracker in their a$$.

    Scott

    Petaluma Rocks:dude
     
  18. marklyn

    marklyn Member

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    I agree!
    I use the clean sound on my Mark IV about 90% of the time these days and I'm really happy with it. It's nice to have the chunky rhythm of 2 and the smooth high gain lead of 3 when I want them but I like Rhy 1. I keep thinking I ought to go for just a clean amp, but then I'd end up with pedals for my other sounds instead of running guitar>cable>amp most of the time.
    I got it in '91 when there weren't a lot of multi channel amp options and it's stayed with me through 100s of gigs.

    I'm with you Scotty, Petaluma rocks! :dude
     
  19. Rock Fella

    Rock Fella Member

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    let me ask this question, I had a Boogie MK1 RI combo and it plain drove me crazy, see on the mk4, say you decided to move a setting such as bass control from 2 up to 4 , on the MK1 this resulted in the amp sounding like ass, it just appeared that you change one setting a little and the whole amp sound changes drastically, i found to be unliveable with...is the MK4 the same ? Also, with the Mk1 a bass setting higher than 2 led to unbelievable speaker flubbing, is the mk4 the same ?
     
  20. Stormin

    Stormin Supporting Member

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    Yes, and No. Part of the problem you experienced is the "combo" itself. If you run thru a 1x12 Thiele, this becomes MUCH less of an issue. There's just something about all of the Mark combo's that flub in an open back format.

    I've been playing a Mark I RI for the last eight years, and I either add a 1x12 Thiele, or just play the whole thing thru a 4x12. FWIW, my bass is usually on 4, and I've got more bottom than you can imagine.

    Also, keep in mind that the tone stack controls are VERY interactive on the Marks. Small changes in knob settings yield drastic results. It's the way the amps are designed.

    YMMV,

    Stormin!
     

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