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Revised question.."clean channel"..old Showman vs old HiWatt?

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,290
Sorry to delete the previous question, along with the great replies....

Assuming that you have two amps..one "clean", one "dirty"....you can switch over between the two.

"Clean channel" thinking only.....

Old Showman vs Old HiWatt is the question.....

Volume aside...and you have your fave "dirty" amp decided....

Experienced users....choose either the old blackface Showman or the old HiWatt for your "clean" amp...and say why specifically!
 

Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,290
I often use two amp setups on gigs. A couple questions that may help you answer your own: what's your dirty tone? What kind of music do you play/like? Will you blend the amps together, or just A/B?

I love two amp setups, but have had problems when the amps are polar opposites regarding tone. I like the two amps to have a bit of tonal similarity. If the dirty tone is very raw and gainy (ala master-volume Marshall), a Hiwatt may be a better clean companion. If your dirty amp is more like a plexi (relatively less grit, but lots of girth), then a Showman could be better.

For my style, I like a Showman over a Hiwatt. They have a good low-end presence, strong attack, and great note definition. I like Hiwatts when they're on the edge of breakup, which is why it could be a great pair with a more modern dirty tone.
This is a great example of a truly quality responce. From a person who has used the amplifiers in question. Many thanks!

I look forward to more of this ilk.
 

GAT

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
19,194
Terry, I use a two amp setup.

I generally favor "Marshall" lead tones and like my Hiwatt for cleans. British/British setup.

I do bring a Vibrolux or Super Reverb sometimes, but they can sound too dissimilar. I know a lot of guys are looking for the Marshall dirt and Fender clean, but I like amps to sound like they are related, if that makes sense.

When I use my Orangutan for leads I will use a british amp setup for cleans.
 

Steve73

Member
Messages
5,204
I will be following this thread Terry, I am putting together a dual head rig much right now. The Dual Showman or a Super Reverb are near the top of my list for a clean amp. I like Hiwatt's but the spring reverb on Fenders is too important to me. I found a cheap SF Dual Showman head at an online music store if you are interested in it (I am in Canada, they won't ship here). Let me know if you go with the Showman and I'll PM you the info for it.
 
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kimock

Member
Messages
12,520
Sorry to delete the previous question, along with the great replies....

Assuming that you have two amps..one "clean", one "dirty"....you can switch over between the two.

"Clean channel" thinking only.....

Old Showman vs Old HiWatt is the question.....

Volume aside...and you have your fave "dirty" amp decided....

Experienced users....choose either the old blackface Showman or the old HiWatt for your "clean" amp...and say why specifically!
I have a late 60's Dual Showman and a late 70's Hiwatt if that's old enough, a Custom 100.
I use both in various two amp set ups.
It's hard to put the volume issue aside, the Hiwatt is so much louder and in your face, and the Fender is so easy to place in the mix turned down.
So there's some dynamic consideration there if you need your clean tone to cover the quiet stuff, or you need the headroom to keep up with a loud band.

My own take on the thing is that the Fender is a more versatile amp, and that the stock Showman normal channel, no middle control, is maybe the best clean sound you can get from any big Fender amp.

The Hiwatt is in a completely different place than the Fender in almost every way, and does have an amazing clean sound, but it's so distinctive that it doesn't really do that Fender generic 'could be anything' sound.
The cool thing about the Hiwatt at any volume is the beautiful high chirping halo that it gets on all the pick attack.
Really a magical sound that nothing else does as well.
Makes a great amp for Fender Rhodes piano. . .;)

I'd take the Hiwatt if I needed the volume, and I'd take the Fender if I didn't.
I know they're both 4 output tube amps, but the Fender handles more like 60 watts, and the Hiwatt handles more like 120.
There's a huge difference in the EQ as well, and both sound great, but between those two '100 watt' type amps, the dynamic thing is still the biggest difference for me if I'm trying to match one up clean with another amp.
 

GAT

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
19,194
My 50 Hiwatt is still a loud beast so I attenuate one click.

I am working on a new 2 amp setup along with my Bob Bradshaw rig.

One amp is a two channel Glaswerks and the other is a two channel Carol-Ann OD2.

I use the CA's clean channel/Glaswerks lead channel for humbuckers.

When I switch to a strat I channel switch the amps and use the Glaswerks clean channel/CA's lead channel for the strats.

That way I can A/B on the Bradshaw and have a perfect clean/lead tone for the different guitar voicings.
 

Mark Robinson

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
8,933
What sort of cabinets are you going to use Terry?

The Showman is my favorite Fender by a bunch. With the Showman though, it wants to see 8 ohms or 4 ohms. Which is fine and dandy if that's what you have. The Hiwatt has switchable impedance, handy for me with my assortment of 16 ohm cabinets.

I like the top end of the Hiwatts a lot, but the Showman is really awesome in the mids and less punishing with Fendery types of pickups.

Either one can fill in a pinch as a bass amp, as long as the band isn't absurdly loud. These are two of the finest amps of all time, as long as you aren't looking for any breakup at reasonable volumes.
 
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Terry McInturff

45th Anniversary of guitar building!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,290
Great comments, keep them coming!
As for cabs...various 2x12 and 4x12 generally loaded with G12M
I'll certainly use the correct impedance for whatever head is used.
 

ROKY

Member
Messages
7,270
For me it depends on the material I'm covering and what the overall sound and
response of the cleans need to be.

If I need a classic clear clean I use my Showman and run it thru a single EV12L

If I want a more textured clean I go with my Hiwatt 50.

I agree with some other poster also in that if I will tend to pair British with British
and American with American in a lot of cases.

A couple of examples in my musical situations:

TopHat Emplexador(Marshall) w/ a Hiwatt 50(British cleans w/ muscle)

Fender Blonde Bassman w/ a Showman(ALL kinds of 'rootsier' musics)

I have used the Marshall/Fender combo which worked great depending on the
band material - switching from a Fender clean to a 70's Marshall sound has worked
well too .
 

kimock

Member
Messages
12,520
Great comments, keep them coming!
As for cabs...various 2x12 and 4x12 generally loaded with G12M
I'll certainly use the correct impedance for whatever head is used.
The Showman will run fine and sound great with double the 'correct' impedance. Not a good idea for the Hiwatt, but a good option for the 6L6 amp.
 

Carol-AnnAmps

Member
Messages
4,856
My 50 Hiwatt is still a loud beast so I attenuate one click.

I am working on a new 2 amp setup along with my Bob Bradshaw rig.

One amp is a two channel Glaswerks and the other is a two channel Carol-Ann OD2.

I use the CA's clean channel/Glaswerks lead channel for humbuckers.

When I switch to a strat I channel switch the amps and use the Glaswerks clean channel/CA's lead channel for the strats.

That way I can A/B on the Bradshaw and have a perfect clean/lead tone for the different guitar voicings.
Thats really cool to hear...I'm so glad the two work together. Garys a good guy and a good friend of myself and the business.
 




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