Small tube amp recommendation

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by rschultz13, Jan 24, 2015.

  1. rschultz13

    rschultz13 Supporting Member

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    Hi,

    I'm looking for some suggestions for a 15W or less tube amp for church. Honestly 5W would probably due because it will be mic'd. I've got a Blues Jr. myself, BillM modded heavily, and love it. But to buy one used (~$350) and mod reasonably ($150+) would put me in the $500-600 range. I would think I could do better for less.

    Suggestions?
     
  2. terrapin

    terrapin Member

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    If you want a surprisingly good little amp that has just been impressing me alot lately is the VHT Special 6. I have the head and matching 1x12 (bought slightly used off E-Bay for $250 shipped). Great cleans and nice "tweedy" overdrive. Loves pedals. Just a great little amp and a loud 6 watts.
     
  3. BacchusPlateau

    BacchusPlateau Member

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    Used Mesa Ta15 for ~500-600 is what I'd go for!
     
  4. christhered

    christhered Member

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  5. MHG

    MHG Member

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    Red Iron 5 Watter.
     
  6. tuj

    tuj Member

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    Fender Silverface Champ is a great choice as a combo.
     
  7. DaveKS

    DaveKS Member

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    Laney cub 10, upgrade speaker to a Emi lil buddy for more clean headroom if needed. Amp and speaker upgrade still has you under $300.
     
  8. harpinon

    harpinon Silver Supporting Member

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    My buddy bought a Palmer Fab 5 amp. I got to put it through a workout. Of course, it wasn't broken in yet, so that might change things later.


    Its a bit dark, but I like EF86 sounds and an EQ cutting the lows & mids got me there.
    Built in Germany. Really solid. Some sort of Eminence 10" in there. I bet a speaker swap would open it up. Its not a really loud 5 watts tho.

    The list price was $600, but my friend offered the dealer $500 and he agreed.
     
  9. omfg51

    omfg51 Member

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    That would be quite loud, the AC4 12" speaker version is 4 watts, that could do nicely in that setting.
     
  10. rschultz13

    rschultz13 Supporting Member

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    This got my attention. The Special 6 combo (10") is $250, while the Special 6 Ultra combo (12") is $380. Seems like the ultra has more bells and whistles and the 12" speaker, but not sure it's needed. Anyone care to comment? I'm torn...
     
  11. schilly

    schilly Member

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    I just picked up a Laney Cub12R dual inputs one is 15watts the other is 0.75 watts. Totally loving this amp.
     
  12. Whiskeyrebel

    Whiskeyrebel Member

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    There's a real clean Silvertone 1481up on Ebay right now but it is missing the rectifier tube.
     
  13. alvagoldbook

    alvagoldbook Member

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    What kind of a sound are you going for? Clean? Overdrive? Modern or vintage distortion? Reverb?
     
  14. Promit

    Promit Member

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    Honestly, find a Bugera V22. They sell for next to nothing, you don't have to worry about beating them up with gig life, and they sound great for most things. Another bargain basement option is the Crate Palomino series - V8, V16, V18, V32, probably more.
     
  15. Adagietto

    Adagietto Supporting Member

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    I have a S6U head that I run with a small 12" open-back cab and I love it. For starters, it would depend on whether you have a preference for a 10" or 12" speaker. I like 12" for a single, but a 10" can work pretty well. The 'bells and whistles' include more control over tone, a loop, an additional gain stage (Ultra channel), and a Watts control.

    The Depth control is good for tailoring the bass. If you plan to run the amp clean, you may not need the rest of the stuff. If you plan to run it dirty, the Ultra channel gives you control over preamp gain and the Watts control reduces headroom on the output. IOW, you can gain it up to taste at any volume level. The loop allows you to add delay and whatnot after the preamp gain.
     
  16. Bluesful

    Bluesful Supporting Member

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    I think either a AC15 or a AC4 depending on how much volume/headroom you need. Both good amps but in my experience the AC4 doesn't sound great with hubuckers. But not sure what guitars you're using.
     
  17. rschultz13

    rschultz13 Supporting Member

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    Yeah, the loop I like. So I'd put comp, dirt and vol pedals before the amp, and delay, verb, modulation in the loop, right?
     
  18. p19978

    p19978 Member

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    I had a VHT Ultra 6 Special last year (it crapped out 2 weeks later so I sent it back).

    Having said that, it sounded good while it worked and sounded really good after I changed the tubes to JJ's.

    For church use the "Watts" control is really useful; I'm honestly thinking of buying another one as it worked so well for my P&W purpose.

    I'd buy it new to get the warranty.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2015
  19. s360guitarist

    s360guitarist Silver Supporting Member

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    Posted this recently in another thread... (To the OP: BTW, how ya been?)

    Consider an Ampeg GVT15. Way under your price limit and so far under the radar it isn't funny. It may be one of the more versatile amps I have played. It's a 6v6 driven 15/7 watts with a 12" speaker and weighs in at 40ish pounds. With the amp's Baxandall tone stack you can dial in something for all occasions. The mids control is where it is at here in that you can scoop the mids for blackface Princeton tones, noon brings on some brownface Princeton, then start bringing up the mids more for a tweedish Marshall grind.

    The kicker is how much the amp can change with speaker swaps. The stock speaker is nothing to write home about IMO but I have gone with a V30, Weber ceramic Blue, g12h30, Gold, and Greenback. Need u2 chime? Slap a Gold in and bring the mids up to 2 o'clock. Want some AC/DC crunch? Bring the mids to 3 o'clock and slap a GreenBack in...

    I bought the amp because I was wanting a Princeton that I could get to chime a bit. The Princeton always farted out when you bring it up and I did not have the cash then for a Princeton and a swap to a Gold so I picked up the GVT before jumping into the boo-tek market and I have yet to sell it (although bills are coming due!). Recently I had to play and a tube went out in my main amp (el84). The Ampeg fit the bill no problem at all.
     
  20. Adagietto

    Adagietto Supporting Member

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    That's a pretty common way to do it. Unless you use a fair amount of preamp gain, using the loop probably isn't necessary.
     

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