Peavey 5150 combo - good idea or no?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by mvd18969, Apr 24, 2008.

  1. mvd18969

    mvd18969 Member

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    I have the opportunity to buy a Peavey 5150 combo in great condition for a very reasonable price. I have read the reviews on these but have never played one (it's out of state and is being sold by a friend of a friend who would bring back when in the area next week).
    I'm a rock/metal player and have a few Mesa Boogies and Crates (Stealth) that do the hi gain tone perfectly. Lately I've been doing a lot of Classic "arena" rock from the 70's and early 80's.
    My question............is the 5150 a one trick pony or can it do the classic rock sound? I know the amp does the hi gain sound very well but I've got that covered with current gear. Does it still sound good at lower volumes, etc? I have to hand over the cash this weekend if I want to pull the trigger on the deal, so I'm looking for some insight.
     
  2. ChicagoMusicExchangeMatt

    ChicagoMusicExchangeMatt Member

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    I own a 5150 combo, and I love it. Personally, I think it has some of the best distortion tones available, and you'll find that it is pretty versatile if you use your guitar volume and switch to a set of eurotubes lo-gain tubes. I use it in a funk-rock band, and you can get decent cleans to a great crunch to mind-numbing leads. The clean is a little sterile and lifeless at times but if you add an EQ and/or a sonic maximizer, i think you'll be set. The crunch and leads alone from this amp keep me from buying another amp, period.

    if you can get a good deal on it, i'd say buy it because even if you need to sell it, they usually go for 600-800 on ebay so its not a bad investment.
     
  3. mkl13

    mkl13 Silver Supporting Member

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    Boy, I had one a year or 2 ago that I got for $440 used at a local shop. So they can be had for less than 6 to 800. But they are so heavy, that it was just too much for me to move around for gigs. Get the head and a 2x12 if you are going to be moving it at all.
     
  4. mvd18969

    mvd18969 Member

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    yes, from what I understand, they weigh about 85lbs. I'll have to amp up (no pun intended) on some protein shakes! I actually used to play in a band with a bass player who had TWO Ampeg SVT rigs (old school version w/ the 8x10 cabs) and used to have to help him lug those around so I'm used to moving heavy gear. You know, one SVT rig just isn't loud enough...........
     
  5. boonhogganbeck

    boonhogganbeck Member

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    I've heard that the combos are biased warmer than the heads. Maybe it's just urban legend.
     
  6. stratzrus

    stratzrus Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B Supporting Member

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    When they first came out I went to Manny's and played through a 5150, Dual Rectifier and the Marshall DSL. To me the 5150 sounded the cheesiest of the three, but many people like them.
     
  7. Jim S

    Jim S Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    TONE: What he said. I really enjoy mine and it's a steal for the price. No regrets: metal, blues, classic rock, funk. The clean channel gives fanastic blues tones with the gain pushed. Lead channel is sill fun. :)

    WEIGHT: I can carry it with one hand. But I work out a lot too.
    .
     
  8. MGuts

    MGuts Supporting Member

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    +1..I had a combo when I was younger and thought I wanted a stack so I sold the combo and bought the half stack. I was very unhappy with the difference. The combo, IMHO, seems a lot more versatile. I had the 5150 II head, but it didn't seem as warm on either channel. Like Tangalang1 said, the first channel sounds really good. I would say better than the second for a lot of applications. It sounds much more organic and warm. A lot of the later Sammy Hager Van Halen songs have a pushed clean sound. They have a decent amount of saturation, but they aren't like the earlier EVH tones. If you have heard what I'm talking about, that is what the first channel can sound like to me. But with the crunch engaged, that first channel is still pretty high gain. TAKE ME BACK off of the Balance album is a decent example of the first channel IMO.
     
  9. Ventor

    Ventor Member

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    Also in my opinion, a 5150 combo or head should be played with a BBE Sonic Maximizer 422(A) for a better low end and clearer highs.
    In fact, I think it's mandatory :dude
     
  10. jspartz

    jspartz Member

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    I picked one up at a good price and have been enjoying it. I put new tubes in and have been playing with different speakers. I really enjoy the crunch with a fulldrive II pedal in front of it. I am not big on the lead channel, it is very thin sounding. I also put wheels on the bottom to make moving it around a bit better on my body.

    I think it rocks!

    Jason
     
  11. Rayneman

    Rayneman Supporting Member

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    I've had every Peavey 5150 model. Honestly, I liked the combo the best...maybe its because it was paired with the Sheffields, and I've always used Mesa cabs with my heads, but I thought it was a fantastic amp for what it was. I think I paid $400? LOUD.

    There is a crunch mode on the rhythm channel that might get you to a classis sort of tone, but the lead channel is all grind, just shredding metal mayhem.

    I remember taking it to Sam Ash to trade towards a brand new 5150 II head...I never had to trade it because some guy there heard the sales dude testing it and made me parking lot cash deal for it for a couple hundred more that the store would have offered.
     
  12. Joe_Steeler

    Joe_Steeler Member

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    The 5150 is a CLASSIC.
    Can't go wrong, it will tear paint off the wall.
    That good.
     
  13. rex kwon do

    rex kwon do Member

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    I remember when I purchased the 5150 head in 1993 (can't believe that was 15 years ago!) and I took it to the Boogie store on Sunset. I slayed those guys that day - they tripped out when I cranked up through a 2x12 recto cab. The snobby attitude about it being Peavey lasted about 3 seconds when I opened up with a windmill Townsend chord.

    And yes, I do believe the combo sounds better. The Sheffield is probably the most underrated 12 ever made.
     
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  14. HoboMan

    HoboMan Silver Supporting Member

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    I've seen them on EBAY for around $500.
     
  15. mvd18969

    mvd18969 Member

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    I know I'll probably regret it, but I decided to pass on the 5150 combo. I went to check it out and it is a great sounding amp. I was obviously impressed w/ the lead channel and it's killer crunch and harmonics, but I also thought the clean channel sounded very good as well. I was able to dial in a variety of tones after playing w/ the controls for 10 mins or so.
    That said, I could not get past the size of this thing. It is HUGE! Kind of reminded me of the Monolith from that move "2010".
    I'll probably be kicking myself in a month or so for not getting it but in the end, it just is not a practical amp to try to lug around and jam.
     

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