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Mesa small head comparison

hector

Member
Messages
1,077
Any Mesa guys out there who can help me out? I'm looking at various smaller sized Mesa heads. I like 6L6 tubes, 50 watts or so, and a good clean tone. Mesa rectifier distortion tone is not as important to me as a good clean sparkle. Anyhow, I have an Express 5:50 now, but wondered how it compares to:
Mark iV
Nomad
DC-5
F-50
(there's so many Mesa models)
 

never-enough

Member
Messages
1,045
the heartbreaker is only available in a long head or 2x12 combo. great amp!

if the clean sound is your most important criteria, why not look at a markI?
KILLER clean tone, you can find a 60w model in a short head if you look around.
 

Waxhead

Member
Messages
6,105
the two best clean channels Mesa have ever made IMHO are on the
Lonestar, and
Express 5:50
and they both sound virtually the same :YinYang
 

Fxrs

Member
Messages
177
The DC5 has the preamp section of the Mark IV. They can be had for much cheaper
This is not an accurate statement. Completely different pre's, even
Mesa didn't make that claim.(I know, I still have the catalog from when I bought my DC-5 new.)
 

primal

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
513
If cleans are most important, then you probably already have the best Mesa for the job.

Mark IV distortion is amazing, in a different league then the 5:50. Cleans are good, but not 5:50 good.

Never heard a DC 5 but have only read great things about it.

Can't coment on the others.
 

hector

Member
Messages
1,077
Thanks for your comments. I'll probably just stick with the 5:50 for now. I will note that no one said much about the F-50. Isn't that what the 5:50 replaced?
 
Messages
584
I haven't spent any time with the express series, but...

my Maverick and Mark II have awesome clean tones and both have small head options... the Mav is 4 x el84 while the Mark is 2 x 6L6
 

jazzandmetal?

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,692
Thanks for your comments. I'll probably just stick with the 5:50 for now. I will note that no one said much about the F-50. Isn't that what the 5:50 replaced?
The F-50 sucked compared to the 5:50.


The F series replaced the DC series, which I thought was a great line of amps. I had a DC3 combo and a DC10 head.
 

Dog Boy

Senior Member
Messages
3,779
Any Mesa guys out there who can help me out? I'm looking at various smaller sized Mesa heads. I like 6L6 tubes, 50 watts or so, and a good clean tone. Mesa rectifier distortion tone is not as important to me as a good clean sparkle. Anyhow, I have an Express 5:50 now, but wondered how it compares to:
Mark iV
Nomad
DC-5
F-50
(there's so many Mesa models)
If you can find one I want you to check out the Blue Angel. No its not 6L6, no its not quite 50 watts, no its not the smallest sized
head they make but its the best clean tone Mesa ever had imo. Good clean sparkle...oh yeah...
 

Waxhead

Member
Messages
6,105
The F-50 sucked compared to the 5:50.

The F series replaced the DC series, which I thought was a great line of amps. I had a DC3 combo and a DC10 head.
Hey - that's a bit harsh.
The F-50 is an excellent amp IMHO. It excells at the high gain end. It's cleans are good too but just not in the 5:50 and Lonestar class. But then nothing much else is.
 

jazzandmetal?

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,692
Hey - that's a bit harsh.
The F-50 is an excellent amp IMHO. It excells at the high gain end. It's cleans are good too but just not in the 5:50 and Lonestar class. But then nothing much else is.
Sorry. I just didn't care for it compared to the DC series or Express series.
 

Foxtrot

Senior Member
Messages
1,025
the heartbreaker is only available in a long head or 2x12 combo. great amp!

if the clean sound is your most important criteria, why not look at a markI?
KILLER clean tone, you can find a 60w model in a short head if you look around.
Heartbreaker? More like Backbreaker. The 212 Heartbreaker is the heaviest amp I've ever tried to move; I DON'T want to do it ever again.

OP, are you having trouble getting cleans from your Express?

Both the 5:25 & 5:50 produced damn fine cleans for me when I demoed them. I agree with Waxhead that Express 5:50 & Lonestar cleans are almost identical. Perhaps a little tinkering with different tubes would help (at least V1). It's certainly cheaper than another amp.
 

hector

Member
Messages
1,077
From my research, I'm seeing lots of Mark amps out there. Especially the Mark 2 and Mark 3. Also, something about a "stripe" version. Are any of those earlier Mark amps lemons? Is there a particularly "desirable" one, tonewise?
 




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