Sooo many boutique's to choose from.......

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Louie, Dec 7, 2016.

  1. Louie

    Louie Member

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    I've found that the most difficult part about buying a boutique amp is deciding which one I want. There are so many great amps to choose from. Unfortunately, I don't live close to any dealers so playing them first is almost impossible. After listening to a ton of sound samples I have pretty much narrowed my selection down to three. I am sold on the Germino Classic 45. I would also like a good Blackface like amp as well. I really like the Milkman Creamer and the Tone King Sky King. The Andertons you tube demo of the Falcon Grande vs Imperial MkII has me thinking about the Falcon Grande as well. To my ears the Grande sounds much better in that video than the Imperial does. I've got the money together and looking to pull the trigger very soon on one of them. Obviously these amps are quite an investment so looking for thoughts from people who have some experience playing through some of these amps. Thanks.
     
  2. big mike

    big mike Plexi Loving Admin Staff Member

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    Milkman amps I've tried sound fantastic.

    Germino is the benchmark for vintage Marshall tones

    I don't think you'll go wrong there.
     
  3. 71strat

    71strat Member

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    Id have to go with the Germino. Both make great amps.
     
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  4. btjguitarman

    btjguitarman Member

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    Suhr freaking Bella. at its core it's a modded BF bandmaster but its got a more balanced midrange, icepick highs are smoothed out, and no flabby bottom end.
     
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  5. big mike

    big mike Plexi Loving Admin Staff Member

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    Germino would indeed be my first choice
     
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  6. dewey decibel

    dewey decibel Supporting Member

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    Well, seems like you've got the Marshall side figured out, so about the TKs- what do you plan to do with these amps? Play at home, go to jams, club dates, big outdoor festivals? Because that's the differences I see in them, their intended purpose. That said, the Sky King seems the most versitle, but also the most expensive.

    In general people get into the boutique world because they want, say a blackface but with _______. For me, it was lighter weight and a little more EQ flexibility (I sold a great BF Pro Reverb to get my TK). Some people just prefer a new(er) amp to an older one. So, figure out your ______, what you feel is missing in an actual Fender and you'll be closer to making a call.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2016
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  7. joshofsorts

    joshofsorts Supporting Member

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    I agree with dewey d. here. Depends on what you want to use the amp for. I will add that the Imperial will get you closer to a Fender Deluxe Reverb sound with it's 6V6 power tubes, so if that is what you think of when you think of "Blackface", that would be a good choice. You mentioned that you prefer the sound of the Falcon Grande in the demos to the Imperial which to me points to the Falcon Grande & The Sky King being better choices for you with their warmer voicing. The Falcon Grande looks to have great versatility and features for home playing and smaller gigs (or larger mic'd gigs), but the Sky King is going to give you the most versatility from home to the stage and everything between. Also, the Sky King gives you that Ultralinear sound of the Falcon Grande, but also a Pentode mode that makes it more like the Imperial/Blackface sound (basically, the best of both worlds). It's not a cheap amp, but for me, it saves having to have a separate amp for gigging and home playing (bonus because I can get the same sound as I did with the band in my apartment by just clicking down the attenuator a couple of steps), and it puts a smile on my face every time I plug into it, which makes it well worth the investment.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2016
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  8. tremolo3

    tremolo3 Member

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    It doesn't matter, you will end up coming back to a DRRI.

    Just kidding...

    ...maybe not.
     
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  9. joshofsorts

    joshofsorts Supporting Member

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    The Fender Reverb reissues are not a bad choice at all.
     
  10. Louie

    Louie Member

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    Thanks for all of the responses so far. I do tend to like the warmer sounds that I'm hearing from the Sky King and the Falcon Grande. I plan on picking up a Germino some time next year. I would like to get one of the others first. I'm a home player at the moment but plan on gigging in the future when time permits. I like the cleans of a blackface amp but also like the good tweed sounds as well. All of the amps mentioned have some pretty good demos on you tube. There are quite a few more that I was interested in but there were no good sound clips to reference. Either that or the person demoing the amp didn't do it any justice. I don't understand why you would do a sound demo for such a high end amp without micing it.
     
  11. joshofsorts

    joshofsorts Supporting Member

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    One thing that is hard to capture in the demos about the Tone King amps is their cabinet design make them sound like much bigger amps than they are, at least that is my experience with the Sky King, it sounds much bigger than a 1x12.
     
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  12. niassist

    niassist Garage Rock Star Supporting Member

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    Just to throw another name in the hat....Fargen Amps. Ben does a lot of dual amps that house a Marshall and Fender in one amp. Worth looking into. Top shelf stuff.
     
  13. Louie

    Louie Member

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    Fargen is actually one I've recently taken notice to. So many options can drive a person crazy. I think I'd probably be happy with most of the ones I've been looking at.
     
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  14. niassist

    niassist Garage Rock Star Supporting Member

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    As you originally posted, a lot of good companies and amp builders out there right now. It's really a great time to be a musician.
     
  15. Bluesful

    Bluesful Supporting Member

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    Man.......I want a Classic 45 too...............
     
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  16. Fatty McAtty

    Fatty McAtty Member

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    The Fargen DBC is one of, if not the best, Fender clean & dirty Marshall combining amps I've heard.
     
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  17. swiveltung

    swiveltung Member

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    No.... the most difficult part is reselling it for 1/2 of what you paid when you realize $ doesn't = tone necessarily. :>)
     
  18. woof*

    woof* Member

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  19. saltydogg

    saltydogg Rock & Roll Enthusiast Gold Supporting Member

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    The Germino Classic 45 (JTM45) might be my favorite amp of all-time, in the single-channel-Marshall-amp category.

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. neteraser

    neteraser Member

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    Another vote for a DRRI. Fender is my best money spent since I first bought my first MIM guitar.
     

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