Played a Carr Mercury today...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by modestmelody, Feb 14, 2008.


  1. modestmelody

    modestmelody Member

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    Very nice amp. The 1/10 setting is completely useless, but on both 1/2 and 2w I was able to get some very nice tones going. Definitely a lot of evidence for my continued love of 6v6 breakup...

    Gain voicing switch was very useful, and I found nice tones on all positions. The "cut" switch was completely useless though-- one equals trying to scoop your mids in a vintage sounding rock circuit, one equals good tone...


    The reverb on that thing was ****ing intense!


    But yeah, overall, great rock amp, did a lot of nice **** at low volume, however, it's definitely not worth the $1800 used GC wanted. The truth is there are many amps with master volumes that sound just as good at low levels and have the added versatility of being able to get loud enough to keep up with others. I did notice they had what appeared to be a 60w speaker in the back, I wonder if the tone suffered from not being able to really drive the speaker at all even on the max setting. There was definitely something missing not being able to move a bit more air and work the speaker harder.


    If you've got the money, this is one hell of a nice built amp for rehearsing or the studio, but as far as I'm concerned, the Cornford Harlequin walked all over the Carr Mercury.
     
  2. Echoes

    Echoes Senior Member

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    my Carr Merc had a KT66 which I traded out for an EL34 and always played it on the 9 watt setting and dimed the bugger...it really sang when I hit it with a Fulltone OCD...the lower wattage settings sounded just grungy and useless to me...and it had no reverb...is that new on these?
     
  3. modestmelody

    modestmelody Member

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    I'm not sure if reverb is a new option...

    I'm pretty sure this was 6v6, but I could be mistaken, it may have been KT66. I thought before playing it that they came with KT66s but was told by the employee (who was actually a nice, reasonable guy) they were 6v6. The 8w setting was definitely better than the lower wattage settings, thought I wouldn't say they were useless per se. The 2w setting was quite decent, the 1/2w was usable, the 1/10 setting was stupid.

    Maybe it would have been nicer with an EL34 and more my style, I tend to prefer British styled amps. It just didn't quite sing the way I was hoping. I think it may be a speaker issue, personally. It wasn't a bad amp by any means, but my Valvetech spanked it, IMO, both for quiet sounds using the master and for tones loud enough to keep up with a drummer. I guess the hype just let me down.
     
  4. Londoncalling

    Londoncalling Member

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    They have always had reverb. In the early days they came with a KT66. Now they are shipped with an el34. They can accommodate quite a few tubes and folks often swap so who knows what a used amp might have.

    Mine came with an el34, but I have swapped in KT66.
     
  5. Tonefish

    Tonefish Member

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    How about more about the Harlequin then?:)

    I have a mercury and really like it, but I've been curious about the Harlequin.
     
  6. modestmelody

    modestmelody Member

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    Well, I thought it was fatter than the Carr, maybe slightly less versatile because of that three way gain voicing switch, but much more responsive, surprisingly enough since it has a master volume. I think that the Harlquin was thicker and clearer when it was heavier and generally sounded more alive. I think it sounded most like the Carr when on the 8w setting but at various points on the master volume and was equally appropriate for use in the home. It just sounded more alive-- the Carr in comparison just doesn't have the same kind of give the Harlequin gives you feel wise and just isn't as fat/full/thick/present... the Carr is almost choked sounding versus the Harlequin.
     
  7. Tonefish

    Tonefish Member

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    Thanks, I think I know what you mean. But isn't that how it often "feels" when comparing a lower wattage amp with a higher one? Not being controversial, I've just noticed that when I do that comparison.
     
  8. sage97

    sage97 Member

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    Yeah...I had the Merc and sold it within a week of acquiring the Harlequin. That was 4 years ago and I still have the Harlequin.

    I am intrigued by the Carrera and J. Peters' amps.
     
  9. FiveG

    FiveG Gold Supporting Member

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    I like my Merc a lot, but one thing I'm struggling with is trying to keep it clean with humbuckers at most any volume. Anyone have any suggestions/hints on settings to keep it clean?
     
  10. apoyando

    apoyando Supporting Member

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    I have owned a Merc for several years..I use it primarily as a recording amp..8 watts just ain't enough headroom for me.for live use, though I can use it at a small rehearsal. I don't find the 1/10 watt setting useless at all; it records great when close-miced, and enables recording with little mic bleed ( due to the " lack of volume " ) in less than ideal situations. The amp is very tube-dependent, and should be biased properly for tone, something that can be done with a meter very easily, as test points are built into the amp. It also has a wide bias range that is acceptable for the power tube used.. wher you set this this will also change the openness of the tone, etc. If you spend time with it, it is surprisingly adaptable...IMHO
     
  11. esoteric pete

    esoteric pete Supporting Member

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    you cant use a 6v6 in the mercury, but you can use a 6L6 in it....which is what might have been in there...

    the 1/10 setting is perfect for slamming power chords at 4 am while someone is sleeping in the next room....thats a use right there, so i wouldnt say its useless...
     
  12. bluetweed

    bluetweed Supporting Member

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    You want to Listen to the best single ended amp ever built listen to the Siegmund Midnight Special.
     
  13. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    +1 especially w/ the field coil speaker, and mahog cab
     
  14. Gary F.

    Gary F. Member

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    I had one of the early mercs. Nice amp for the living room/studio, but i far prefer my superchamp (stock, but w/replacement 10" Rajin Cajin). Doesn't do a proper 2W setting, but you can set it at a pretty low volume that's surprisingly glassy and full with the MV. Never use the OD settings. The SC would be my desert islander...

    Gary
     

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