Scottone's Stephenson 30

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Franktone, Jun 17, 2008.

  1. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    Scottone had me over at his place to demonstrate his new Stephenson 30 combo with power scaling. This amp is from British Columbia and is made by Mark Stephenson. It has a toroidal power transformer that keeps the amp quiet, power scaling, four power tubes that can be switched in or out of the circuit (two of the power tubes are octals and these sockets can take almost any kind of octal tube that you can dream of since the amp is cathode biased). The two other power tubes are EL84's. The amp has a special output transformer that copes well with the grouping of different power tubes. The amp sounded awesome with just one EL84 running cranked up. If you need more power half ways through a gig, just switch in another power tube. The clean sounds have a huge of tones since you can combine any tube combination that you can dream of. But the mix of two EL84's with two 6V6's presents the tonal characteristics of both tube families, and since these tubes are different, there is less cancelling of even harmonics, according to Stephenson's literature. Well this combination does chime. Imagine changing the tube settings for the acoustics of the room and loudness. It's a great sounding amp and if switching tubes in and out is not enough, power scaling is there for extra breakup. Scott is very happy with the sound of the amp. I brought along my string of pedals and the amp worked very well with all of them. Even I was there for a couple of hours, I was only able to scratch the surface of what this tone machine could do. You can get pure overdriven output tone at low volumes and loud cleans just by the click of switches. Billy Talent's guitarist Ian uses Stephenson. I really like this thing because of the possibilities, and my tastes for tone change from day to day. Think: pure EL84 sound, pure EL34 sound, pure 6V6 sound, pure 5881 sound, Pure KT66 sound, pure KT77 sound, or combinations of all of the above. Did I say that the amp is point to point and built like a Rolls Royce. It has switches to change radical amplifier settings such as ultra linear etc (don't ask, I'm just learning). Thanks Scott for the Gas, I think I want to buy one. Scott is an awesome guy and knows amplifiers.
     
  2. Keld

    Keld Member

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    Would love to hear/play one. The Stage Hog is great, so I imagine the Stephenson amps are equally good.
     
  3. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    There no clips anywhere that I could find. I was lucky that Scott had me over at his place on Saturday for the demo. I brought my bassman reissue along for comparison. The bassman has a big beautiful sound, but I find it too loud, especially if you want to push it. The Stephenson has this ability to run a single full out like a cranked amp without resorting to attenuation or power scaling and it screams big and thick like the old amps of yore cranked wide open. I want to save my ears, so this makes more and more sense to me as I think about it. Want a little more volume, switch in another tube without even shutting off the amp. When I called Mark Stephenson and told him how much I liked the sound of the single EL84 wide open, he said "Your've gotta hear the sound of a single KT77 in there". He said certain pairs sound great such as 5881's or a pair of EL34's. His favourite tone is that of a pair of 6V6's with a pair of EL84's just like Scott's setup. And Scott's amp did sound spectacular, but I agree, you have to hear it for yourself. Scott has the combo with an Eminence 12 according to Mark. Of course the amp is going to sound different according to the speakers that you use. It seems that a lot of working and recording guitarists are using these amps.
     
  4. Griz

    Griz Member

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    The Stephenson 30 is one I'm dying to hear. I love the tones of his amps that I've heard on recordings (Shania, Billy Talent), and he apparently co-designed the Reeves Custom 30, which is another amp on my "want" list; but I've yet to hear the 30 watt head. Kinda frustrating. Surely somebody has posted clips.
    :RoCkIn
     
  5. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    When I mentioned the lack of clips to Mark, he acknowledged it and expressed a desire to changing that sometime. He gets a lot of business already from people that try one out in a studio and decide that they have to have one. He is quite busy. Mark is an awesome guy and is incredibly generous with his time on the phone explaining things about his amp, stage hog, and cabinets. You won't meet a better guy, I can tell you that. I am getting the feeling that he is quite keen around amplifiers from everything I have read and from the two conversations I had with him.
     
  6. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    I sent my initial deposit in to Mark for the Stephenson 30, a day before I started this thread. When my amp arrives, I'll try to make some clips using my Toshiba laptop. I suppose that all I'll need is to borrow a pair of SM57's into adapters, transformers, to convert the signal on the way into the laptop, or maybe also use a Macke mixer, and run that into my laptop. Would that do it? Mark said it will take a few months and his website says 6 months, so it could be up to 6 months. His setup is pretty well a family operation.
     
  7. Keld

    Keld Member

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    If you have a way to interface the Mackie with the laptop, you should be all set.

    And congrats in advance. Sounds like a great amp.

     
  8. Scottone

    Scottone Supporting Member

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    You're more than welcome Neil, hope we can get together again soon.

    BTW, I ended up ordering a Mad Professor LGW since I liked your's so much :D

    Are you going with the combo or the head?
     
  9. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    Hi Scott, I am going with the head. I really like the size, looks, and compactness of your combo. The price of the head is a little easier for me to explain to my wife. I can get a cabinet later and I have a Traynor 4x12 and an ampeg 4x12 I can use in the mean time. I could even connect it up to the speakers in my 2x12 Marshall combo with G12-65's in it. But it is a little cheaper and lighter to carry. Mark was telling me that you have the eminence speaker and I thought it sounded excellent.
     
  10. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    Scott, what do you like best about your Stephenson 30?
     
  11. grantster

    grantster Member

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    I have an Stephenson LJ 30 and LOVE IT! Mark did a fantastic job with this one. Works well with pedals. I have to confess that I have one of Mark's stage hog's and an FMD boost pedal as well. I can't believe more people have not picked up his FMD pedal. It is so versatile and sounds awesome with fender, vox, marshall type amps. Mark is a fantastic guy that I swear works 18 hours a day, seven days a week. I had him build me a head, and bought a 1 x 12 combo that the chassis fits in. Very versatile.

    Grant
     
  12. go7

    go7 Member

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    Mark lives down the road from me.He doesn`t advertise a lot because he doesn`t have to.Studio players hear his amps and order one or two.See his lead times.His Stage Hog is legendary,the FMD [Fix my duck] is a wonderful thing,unique design and hand painted duck by his daughter.I`ll be dropping by his shop in a few days to try out an amp. Simply a great guy who loves chasing tone.Google Stephenson amps.
     
  13. Scottone

    Scottone Supporting Member

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    Best thing is the great tone of course :D

    I also love the versatility and the fact that it takes to pedals so well.
     
  14. Paul86

    Paul86 Member

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    Where's them pics?
     
  15. Scottone

    Scottone Supporting Member

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    Here one..

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    I love that amp Scott.
     
  17. Franktone

    Franktone Member

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    Thanks for the picture Scott.
     

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