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New Mesa Boogie amp: Fillmore 50

fjs1962

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,407
All this price stuff is relative. Compared to Mexican, Chinese, etc. made amps the Mesa seems expensive, but compared to other USA made 50 watt tube amps it’s a bargain.

Contrary to what has been said on this thread most of the serious gigging guitarists I know (and do repairs for) prefer to use nice gear, even if they have to buy used to afford it. And a lot of the ones who use stuff like Hot Rod Deluxes, Fender reissues, etc. usually bring them to me to be modded for reliability and better tone.
 

gearscrubs

Member
Messages
4,207
What do you think of your TA-15 in tweed mode with the gain all the way up and adjust master to taste? I find that with my Tele in position 4 (both PUPs in series) and careful adjusting of the treble and bass knobs on the amp, I can get a nice singing lead tone reminiscent of some of the guitar tones on the ABB Live at the Fillmore Album.
Tweed is my favorite mode and I love it with the gain and master cranked (bass and treble set relatively low). In the clips of the Fillmore, it sounds like the higher gain setting might have more gain than either of the HI modes on the TA-15, and perhaps more of the "cascading" type of preamp gain of other Mesa amps. Obviously, I'd like to check it out in person to compare.
 

stratzrus

Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
20,894
...it is not a workhorse amp for the same user base as the Fender HRD/Bassbreaker lines...
...a lot of the ones who use stuff like Hot Rod Deluxes, Fender reissues, etc. usually bring them to me to be modded for reliability and better tone.
My main "workhorse" amp is a George Benson Hot Rod Deluxe purchased used in mint condition for $650. I had my tech sort it out and I've had no problems with it since.

I do prefer my Triple Crown 50 over the HRD but so far the TC has only left home once for a jam session. I like playing through it at home where I can really hear the tonal nuances. In a band setting the HRD with my Fractal Audio FX8 sounds great and is easier to transport than the head and cabinet.

Personally, I'm not hearing anything from the Fillmore I can't get out of the TC and, just going by the clips, I prefer the TC's clean tones and gain tones. Perhaps if I actually played through one and dialed it in to my own tonal preferences I'd get results I like better but so far, the rationale for the amp escapes me. I have to agree with chance0, I don't see them selling a ton of these.
 

stratzrus

Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
20,894
I don't think you should buy a Fillmore, in that case.
I definitely won't.

First, I'm really happy with the amps I have. The TC-50, various Fender combos, Fryette Deliverance 120 and Sig:X and a few more.

Secondly, the cleans on the Fillmore sounded thin to me and the gain tones sounded congested when pushed.

Lastly, there comes a point where it makes sense to stop buying gear and play what you have and that's where I am now.

I know there are others on this thread who really like the Fillmore and that's fine. There's no amp that everyone likes.
 

epauley

Member
Messages
425
As for what constitutes a workhorse amp, Twin Reverbs are a standard in festival backline and have been for decades.
Agree 100%! The twin reverb is one of the most iconic workhorse amps of all time, and is considered reasonably priced. With that said, a working musician's gear isn't always defined simply by price. It's also defined by how versatile and reliable it performs. Since its creation, the Standard (now pro) American Strat for example has been considered the quintessential working musician’s guitar but it’s far from being the cheapest instrument on the rack.

Also, there's no need to apologize. Your comments are clear and well thought out.
 

fjs1962

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,407
Personally, I'm not hearing anything from the Fillmore I can't get out of the TC and, just going by the clips, I prefer the TC's clean tones and gain tones.
I’ve got a TC-50 that I’ve owned since they came out, and I love that amp. No plans to get rid of it at all. But even with 6L6s it never gets close to the old school Fender type tone and feel I’m getting when playing the Fillmore. As far as the gain tones the TC is more “Marshall” where the Fillmore gain is more like cranked Fender amps, then bordering on something like a Fuchs on the Hi mode.

I guess what I’m saying is it really depends on whether you like Fender or Marshall type tones better when it comes to the TC-50 vs Fillmore, but both are great imo.
 

stratzrus

Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
20,894
Then why are you posting? You should start a TC thread.
I didn't realize this thread was only for people who planned to buy a Fillmore or only for people who are impressed with it.

And there's already a TC thread, a pretty big one.

I’ve got a TC-50 that I’ve owned since they came out, and I love that amp. No plans to get rid of it at all. But even with 6L6s it never gets close to the old school Fender type tone and feel I’m getting when playing the Fillmore. As far as the gain tones the TC is more “Marshall” where the Fillmore gain is more like cranked Fender amps, then bordering on something like a Fuchs on the Hi mode.

I guess what I’m saying is it really depends on whether you like Fender or Marshall type tones better when it comes to the TC-50 vs Fillmore, but both are great imo.
As I've stated, I haven't played through a Fillmore and might agree with you if I did.

I have a few blackface combos and, dialed in the way I like it, the TC-50 head through a Fender extension cab sounds an awful lot like my Super Reverb. I love Fenders but greatly prefer the gain tones of the SR on 5 or 6 to the Deluxe Reverb pushed into gain. I'd agree that the Fillmore sounds more like a cranked DR than the TC, it's just not my favorite tone. The TC's gain channel with the drive switch thrown has tones that are a lot like the SR when pushed and I prefer that to anything I've heard come from the Fillmore.

I'd agree that the Hi channel on the TC is more Marshall like than the Fillmore and I bought it to get that flavor, the clean channel was a pleasant surprise. My Fryettes are significantly tighter and I wanted something that was more compressed and saturated, The TC does that wonderfully.

I'm sure you're hearing things that I'm not since you actually have the amp. I would like to try one but even if I really like it, buying one is not in the cards now.
 
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fjs1962

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,407
I have a few blackface combos and, dialed in the way I like it, the TC-50 head through a Fender extension cab sounds an awful lot like my Super Reverb. I love Fenders but greatly prefer the gain tones of the SR on 5 or 6 to the Deluxe Reverb pushed into gain. I'd agree that the Fillmore sounds more like a cranked DR than the TC, it's just not my favorite tone. The TC's gain channel with the drive switch thrown has tones that are a lot like the SR when pushed and I prefer that to anything I've heard come from the Fillmore.
The biggest difference I hear/feel between the TC clean and the Fillmore clean is how they compress when they start to break up. To me the TC clean feels like it wants to stay clean, and fights breaking up. I think that’s what Mesa was going for, because I’ve heard them talk about wanting it to stay very clean. The Fillmore clean starts to break up easier, and more like an old blackface when it’s cranked. I have to run my Morning Glory into the TC clean to get something like that.

The other thing I’ve said before, so far I’ve only heard the Fillmore through the C90 speaker in the combo cab. I’m looking forward to getting my head because then I can see what it sounds like through other speakers. I know when I had a Fender Supersonic 22 for a while it sounded great through a Celestion Creamback, so I’m expecting the Fillmore will too.
 

Jazzgear

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
751
I didn't realize this thread was only for people who planned to buy a Fillmore or only for people who are impressed with it.

And there's already a TC thread, a pretty big one.

As I've stated, I haven't played through a Fillmore and might agree with you if I did.

I have a few blackface combos and, dialed in the way I like it, the TC-50 head through a Fender extension cab sounds an awful lot like my Super Reverb. I love Fenders but greatly prefer the gain tones of the SR on 5 or 6 to the Deluxe Reverb pushed into gain. I'd agree that the Fillmore sounds more like a cranked DR than the TC, it's just not my favorite tone. The TC's gain channel with the drive switch thrown has tones that are a lot like the SR when pushed and I prefer that to anything I've heard come from the Fillmore.

I'd agree that the Hi channel on the TC is more Marshall like than the Fillmore and I bought it to get that flavor, the clean channel was a pleasant surprise. My Fryettes are significantly tighter and I wanted something that was more compressed and saturated, The TC does that wonderfully.

I'm sure you're hearing things that I'm not since you actually have the amp. I would like to try one but even if I really like it, buying one is not in the cards now.
I don’t think it’s necessary to go on and on trying to defend your rationale for not buying the Fillmore. You made your point, let it be.
 

CaliCaveMan

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,560
I’ve got a TC-50 that I’ve owned since they came out, and I love that amp. No plans to get rid of it at all. But even with 6L6s it never gets close to the old school Fender type tone and feel I’m getting when playing the Fillmore. As far as the gain tones the TC is more “Marshall” where the Fillmore gain is more like cranked Fender amps, then bordering on something like a Fuchs on the Hi mode.

I guess what I’m saying is it really depends on whether you like Fender or Marshall type tones better when it comes to the TC-50 vs Fillmore, but both are great imo.
And with the new Mesa Switch Track, you too can enjoy multiple amps that do certain things well. :)

Looking forward to trying one for myself soon.
 

SRT2011

Member
Messages
1,163
I played my Fillmore for a couple hours tonight and am really liking this amp a lot! I spent most time in the Clean and Drive modes with a Flashback4 in the loop and TS9 and Spark Mini Boost into the amp. I was able to easily dial in some great tones that would nicely cover most songs I play with my band. Looking forward to playing it during rehearsal this Friday! I didn't notice any tone degradation using loop or unwanted noise from boost pedals up front.
 

guitarman3001

Member
Messages
10,548
I don't think you should buy a Fillmore, in that case.
Agreed. Which is why I also most likely won't be buying a Fillmore. But what I AM looking for is a combo to replace my ROV25 which I really don't use much. I don't think the Fillmore will work for me though. But....never say never.....
 




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