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Old Marshalls sound best @ 8 ohm??

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by SQUAREHEAD, Nov 10, 2005.

  1. SQUAREHEAD

    SQUAREHEAD Supporting Member

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    Any of you guys ever experienced this??
    I have a number of old Marshall 100 watters and they all sound best on the 8ohm setting-thru any cab, any cab meaning 8ohm cabs, 16ohm cabs etc... doesn't matter. They have more bight, better gain characteristics, everything is better at 8ohm!
    I don't get it??!!:confused:

    Keith
     
  2. Shea

    Shea Member

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    How old, and what power tubes do you put in them?

    Shea
     
  3. SQUAREHEAD

    SQUAREHEAD Supporting Member

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    Late 60's early 70's ...
    Siemens 34's in all of them.
     
  4. steve10358

    steve10358 Supporting Member

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    Depends on how its wired. Some Marshalls have the purple lead that runs to the ohm switch. The lower you set the ohms, the higher the gain. This happens on some.

    Personally I have been experimenting... and sadly like the 8ohms better as well. Much darker. Makes me wonder what to do with my cabs. I LOVE MESA's traditional 4x12.

    But what do I do?

    I'm gonna try running different variations with the 8 and 16 ohm hot plate as well tomorrow.
     
  5. hogy

    hogy Member

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    That's why you're supposed to run a full stack, two 16 Ohm 4X12s in parallel = 8 Ohm.

    Did I mention bigger is better?

    Hogy
     
  6. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    I was going to mention the same exact thing but you beat me to it. I'm sure that's how all were designed, and all the old Marshall cabs I've seen were 16ohms so there's your 8ohms that you want to run the 100watter at, thru 8-12's! I'm sure that was planned that way!

    ERIC
     
  7. SQUAREHEAD

    SQUAREHEAD Supporting Member

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    makes sense.
     
  8. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    I think I'm gonna go downstairs now and hook my 71 SUperlead up thru 2 4x12's... I"ll be back!! :)

    ERIC
     
  9. SQUAREHEAD

    SQUAREHEAD Supporting Member

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    then try it at 8ohm thru one!
     
  10. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    Just did! My 1st impressions are this... Son of a bitch is this loud. Old Marshalls sound so great. I had 1 other 71 Superlead that was way better than this one tho . That was my 3rd amp ever after a 60's Gretsch tube combo , then in 1978 I got my 1st new amp (PV Classic 50 combo.. used for 8 years of gigs) , and about 1980 I got the 71 Superlead. This one is modded so that each input of the 4 has slightly different tonality and different gain (not just treble and bass and volume,etc like normal) It's also got a great tube buffered fx loop a friend put in it.. Meanwhile it cost me 600 so not too bad .. Regardless of that , son of a bitch is it loud. Used with the 8 ohm setting into 1 16 ohm cab it's lower volume than running 16 into 16 , but also a bit warmer and 'browner' .. Cool... These are great amps and I wish I would've accumulated way more old Marshalls over the years. I really wish I was smart enough when everyone used to have them 'used' for 300.00 to 700.00 to try a bunch and pick my favorites, as EVERY one I've owned or tried, has sounded quite a bit different. My 1st that I got in around 1980 cost me 300.00 and it was KILLER.. LIke a dummy I sold it for 350.00 about 7 years later

    ERIC
     
  11. Deaj

    Deaj Member

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    I used to own three JMP-50 heads built between '70 and '72 (my favorite Marshall amps). Two of them sounded best, to my ears anyway, at 16ohms. The other sounded best at 8ohms.
     
  12. psychodave

    psychodave Senior Member

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    Try hooking one up to 4 4x12!!! :dude
     
  13. Conner

    Conner Member

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    I run mine through 2 8ohm 4x12's and set my amp at 4 ohms for a little sooner break-up.
     
  14. straightblues

    straightblues Member

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    Will running my 1980's JCM 800 combo at 8 ohms give me similar results?
     
  15. Jemlite

    Jemlite Member

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    I had 3 late 60's Plexis all modified by LA amp guru Jose Arrendondo (RIP) in the 80's .

    He did all my cabs too, and always set them up to run 4ohms. (I used to run stacks though, so they must have been 8ohm cabs x2).

    I just remember him being stuck on me running 4 ohm for the best tone though.
     
  16. steve10358

    steve10358 Supporting Member

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    How can you set a cab for a different ohmage?
    I have 16 ohm cabs.
     
  17. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    hI , you can't set cabs for different ohmages. You can re-wire your cabinet to be a 4 ohm cabinet if you want though but that's it. If you use 2 16ohm cabs you'll be using 8 ohms of resistance .

    Have fun

    ERIC
     
  18. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    Ya know , I've kept these type of amps over the years for a few reasons... 1) They're absolutely great amps, and 2) Man I still wish someday I'll be able to gig with full stacks or dual full stacks like my favorite bar bands did in the late 70's when I started going out. Meanwhile, that 2nd option just didn't happen with my 20+ years of cover bands.. The places up here have shrunk, and the volumes have shrunk drastically . SO, my next endeavor will more than likely be all-originals again , and though I'm pretty damn old, I 'm still hoping to play all-original LOUD music again.. (I haven't caved into being the blues guitarist yet!!) LOL.... I've told myself , the day I play in a blues band or r&b band is the day I consider myself old.. Unfortunately this year when my modern rock-type band just kept drawing less people (well the bars are, with or without us!) , I'm getting closer...... OK, meanwhile after all that babbling, those amps were designed for use with 2 to 4 4x12's.. That's the way EVERYONE in the late 70's used them , and though I couldn't go to bars in the early-mid 70's , that's surely the way every concert guitarist used them . Now everyone's trying to keep their volume down with attenuators, adding master volumes, plexi shields, etc but back then people liked loud music. I still do !

    ERIC
     
  19. scottcw

    scottcw Low rent hobbyist Silver Supporting Member

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    Does hooking a 16 or 4 ohm load to an 8 ohm tap cause any problems to an amp? is it better to mismatch on the high side (8 tap to 16 load) or the low side (8 tap to 4 load)?
     
  20. ericb

    ericb Silver Supporting Member

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    I remember posting this so many times about 10-12 years ago when I first got on all the music/amp /recording etc forums/boards on the net , and though 90% of the replies were never use lower impedance than what your amp is set for , the other 10% gave the exact opposite response. Almost everyone though was a KNOWITALL and told everyone they'd blow up their amp if they didn't listen.. Meanwhile people like me had played for years not really knowing anything about impedance matches/mismatches.. I don't have 1 guitarist friend that knows anything about that, and they don't blow up their amps.. I do have 1 friend who blew up about 3-4 of his band's poweramps though using 2 ohm loads thru them when the owner's manuals clearly said do NOT use 2 ohm loads. Once I taught him what his pa speakers were each and how if you daisy-chained too many of them or piggy-backed too many, it brought the resistance below 4 ohms he hasn't blown up 1 amp..

    Meanwhile, 90% of the replies I got over and over were 'if you have to do it ' use a higher impedance cab, but always match... the other 10% seemed to be from people re: mostly old Fenders and that was use a lower impedance if you must mismatch. Personally I've never damaged any amp or blown any doing this wrong, so I'm not worried about it, but I fully understand if others are (sorry for the babbling, but it summed up about 3 years of my experience posting your same question! :)
    ERIC
     

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