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School me on the JCM 800

Mika

Member
Messages
253
So I have used deluxe reverbs, dr z maz 18s, carmen ghias.

I now use a british vox ac30 and love it.


So I got a trade offer for a marshall jcm 800, with 4 12 cab.

I have never owned a marshall, so what are the things I should know.
I play wilco, meets noise rock, meets, ambient rock. Indie rock.
Generally use strat.

Also is the jcm 800 handwired, and whats the worth.

School me
 

les strat

Member
Messages
454
Not handwired. Pots are typically made in Taiwan.

Great hard rock amps. And the prices are only going up from here. The plexi's of today's teens!
 

Fulldrive-1

Senior Member
Messages
5,926
Marshall heads haven't been "handwired" since the middle of 1973.

If your 800 has "vertical" inputs, it's a circuit board with flying leads to the pots and jacks.

If it has "horizontal" inputs, it's a model with the pots and jacks mounted directly to the board.


Either way, the 800 is the Sound of Rock. It has a bit more gain and brightness than the JMP series, but I've played through a few here and there, and they all have sounded awesome. Listen to Allison Robertson of the Donnas; there's your classic JCM800 sound.

If it has four inputs, it's a non-master 800. These were not nearly as common as the model 2203 (100w) and 2204 (50w) models. The masters on these are pre-phase inverter. The louder you crank the amp, the better they sound. These shipped with 6550 output tubes. I recommend that you have a tech convert the amp to use EL34, which is what Marshalls were originally designed to use. 6550 has more headroom and bottom end punch, but 34s sound warmer.

If you can do a decent trade, grab it.
 

Mika

Member
Messages
253
ok so its 2203 but judging from serial its from the 80s. Which could be good and bad. hopefully its been maintained.
On paper this amp should be awesome despite its massive size.
 

Fulldrive-1

Senior Member
Messages
5,926
ok so its 2203 but judging from serial its from the 80s. Which could be good and bad. hopefully its been maintained.
On paper this amp should be awesome despite its massive size.

Good and bad? Nothing bad about a 2203. 100 watts of 800 power. If you can't get a good sound out of this head, you should take up the tuba.
 

projam619

Member
Messages
1,375
So I have used deluxe reverbs, dr z maz 18s, carmen ghias.

I now use a british vox ac30 and love it.


So I got a trade offer for a marshall jcm 800, with 4 12 cab.

I have never owned a marshall, so what are the things I should know.
I play wilco, meets noise rock, meets, ambient rock. Indie rock.
Generally use strat.

Also is the jcm 800 handwired, and whats the worth.

School me
I used this amp (JCM 800 2204) for years, and its a great sounding amp - as others have mentioned, it's the sound of classic rock (I think of the first Pearl Jam album for JCM800 tones0. However, I sold it since I decided I wanted more cleans and headroom, and switched to EL84 amps. If you play a lot of ambient, I'm not sure it would be a good fit. And as far as indie rock: it depends on the type of indie rock. Wilco-type tones are not typically Marshall-y, as far as I know. I would stick with Vox and/or blackface Fender tones, personally-speaking. BTW, in terms of value, I sold my Marshall for $750, which is actually a steal, since I could have sold it for closer to a grand if I was patient enough (I sold it to the guitarist for the Psychedelic Furs - guess he's into the classic rock tone, weirdly enough).
 




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