Splawn vs Shiva - give me a comparison...

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Benlevy, Sep 18, 2008.

  1. Benlevy

    Benlevy Member

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    So they're both in the Marshall vein, high gain with cleans, boosts, good reputations. Anyone owned both? Which would you recommend. I'm going to be playing all kinds of rock stuff, except modern scooped metal.

    Any cab suggestions you want to throw in will be appreciated too...

    Thanks!
     
  2. ecbluesman54

    ecbluesman54 Member

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    Had both and would have to vote for the Shiva. Cleans were better, and offered reverb. Liked my Shiva with Vintage 30's.
    I had a quickrod, and it was a good amp.
     
  3. bartmcartman

    bartmcartman Supporting Member

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    I've had a shiva and currently have a Splawn. If the clean tone is most important to you I would recommend the shiva. If the gain tones are more important I would have to go with the Splawn. The clean on the Splawn is decent but not quite as nice as the Shiva. The Splawn has more versatility in the gain channel with the three gears and a boost. Also, the gears can be footswitched by using a stereo y cable. The Splawn is crazy loud however and I use an omnisonic volume box in the loop with great results. Used Splawns are usually a steal in my opinion...
     
  4. Hacksaw

    Hacksaw Time Warped Gold Supporting Member

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    Had both as well.

    Shiva does have great cleans! the OD was a tad lacking for some heavy rock stuff. so I boosted it. With a marshall v30 cab this amp was one of the best tones out there. Wont take your head off if you or the audience is in front of the amp.

    The Qr never needed a boost on the front end. Cleans are not as good.. You will probably want a darker speaker. V30's are bright with the Splawn QR. greenbacks do very well.

    Both amps don't do well at low volumes. The Shiva does do low volumes better.. but, get them rocking and they both come alive.

    where the two are different, I think its the voicing. The Shiva is a darker mid, where the Splawn is a higher mid amp.

    I liked the Shiva with the reverb as well. Splawns for more of the hard rock genre.

    Currently I am using scumback M75/H75 speakers in two Splawn 4x12 cabs. These work well on both amps.
     
  5. lespaul6

    lespaul6 Senior Member

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    I had both and if you like a good clean then get the shiva....my opinion is stay away from both if you are a serious overdrive/ marshall nut...these are not marshalls and the distortion is just plain weird on both. The distortion sounds worse as you turn up the shiva and a global master- which I hated, choked the breathing. The splawn was just too tight uncomfortable, for lack of a better description. The build quality is good on the splawn, just wish the distortion was more in line with classic marshall characteristics. I sold both right away. I had a fender tonemaster at the time and it blew both right out of the water....it was very loud as well.
     
  6. bartmcartman

    bartmcartman Supporting Member

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  7. ed84246

    ed84246 Member

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    Really different animals. Shiva's cleans are blackface Fender-like in quality. Warm, bouncy, great for blues or funk. I really didn't like the Splawn cleans - kind of stiff and sterile.

    As far as gain goes, I like the Shiva for fusion and mid-gain type stuff, but it is frustratingly just shy of great 80's Marshall tones. It's a little too dark and just not enough gain to really get cool effects like pinched harmonics.

    The Splawn will do great 80's modded Marshall stuff - I think that's really what it's built for. But it's not great at low volumes, just really fizzy and cold sounding. At higher volumes, it really shines but that means loud. It sounds cool, but to my ears, there's still some fizz to the tone, I prefer amps like Roccafortes, Camerons and Voodoos for this area. Of those, the Cameron CCM has a great Fender like clean tone, and the CCV's clean is good too, though more Marshall in flavor.
     
  8. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    As others have said, they are two different amps.

    The Shiva is a little bit darker. I think the Splawn holds truer to a true Marshall tone. I don't understand when people say it doesn't sound like a Marshall. To me, it sounds like the best JCM800 I've ever played.

    The Splawn is a little "tighter" too, while the Shiva is a little bit looser on the low end.

    Personally, I think both amps are great. But if I had to pick one (although they are different), I'd go with the Splawn.
     
  9. scoob

    scoob Member

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    I didn't have the money for a Shiva, or anything else over 2 grand...but the Splawn is amazing at any price...I don't really have experience with the Shiva, so I am biased...

    This is what made me get a Splawn:

    http://splawnguitars.com/Splawn%20ACDC%20clip.mp3

    that Anthem clip is great too...not much processing on either...that's what I found great.

    The Cameron's sound great as well...really great. but they are a grand more....and how many are there now? 4? 5?
     
  10. Benlevy

    Benlevy Member

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    Thanks guys, I love this forum! Wow, the clips sound good. Love the Anthem, grew up on Rush. So I'm going to try a Shiva in the next few days. Unfortunately I don't think there's anywhere to try a Splawn in Atlanta. :( Thanks for all the replies.
     
  11. MGuts

    MGuts Supporting Member

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    I looked at these two amps in the past for a while but never got to play either..To get the Splawn sounding good, is it loud to the point where its unusable in most smaller places?
     
  12. Droptopandy

    Droptopandy Supporting Member

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    I agree with you a million percent about how the Splawn and SHiva don't sound like a good Marshall. The Splawn QR does have a weird mid range that some people just don't like. But I'm sure that SPlawn never set out to copy a Marshall and they do have their own thing going on which is probably what they set out to do.

    Myself, i don't plan on owning either one. And i don't mean anything negative about that since both amps are great at what they do.
     
  13. Stormin

    Stormin Supporting Member

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    I've owned both - in fact I replaced my Quickrod with an EL-34 Shiva. They are both very cool amps, but they ARE pretty different amps. For me, there were two things about the QR that made me unload it.

    1) The QR was STOOPID loud - absolutely all or nothing volume wise. I actually couldn't get it "quiet enough" for gigging in large clubs (and we are a very loud band). There's something about the way that Scott designed the taper on the MV circuit that it goes from barely audible to nuclear war volume with absolutely no in between. Of the 7 100 watt heads I've owned, none of them had half the volume that the QR had.

    2) I found the QR to be very treble-y. I gigged the amp with the treble and presence controls completely off and it was still very bright. I even tried different 4x12's with 3 different speaker combinations (V30's, EVM12L's, and GB's and G12H30's in an X). Nothing made much of a difference whether they were in a 1960A or a Mesa 4x12.

    I know it sounds like I'm complaining about the QR, but I did love that amp - it was the Marshall I always wanted, but I could not make it work for me. The QR sounds more like that "holy grail" Marshall than the Shiva does, but the Shiva does it well enough that the search becomes irrelevant. What I do love about the Shiva is that it sounds really damned good at bedroom or at stage levels. Both channels have an outstanding feel. I know this post is getting long, but the Shiva has a "set it and forget it" quality that I really appreciate. A lot of amps I've owned sounded different from day to day and always required tweaking of the mids - not so with the Shiva. It's extremly plug and play.

    To sum it up, the Shiva is a very flexible Marshall like amp that works really well with Strats, Teles, PRSi, or Lesters. I play stuff in the vein of Warren Haynes / Gary Moore / Joe Bonamassa / 80's metal / classic rock / blues rock. I've had the Shiva now for about 6-7 months, and for the first time in my life, I have no interest in playing other amps. In fact I've sold every other amp I owned except for a Matchless 1x12 combo.

    YMMV,

    Stormin!
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2008
  14. Metalheart

    Metalheart Member

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    I'm a little biased cause I've owned 3 QRs and they for me they are priced just right. Loud yes but the newer ones have a different vol. taper so they sound better at lower volumes.
    But.....if I had the money I would be trying other amps for sure.:)
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2008
  15. DarrenTD

    DarrenTD Member

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    Never owned a Splawn but love the clips I've heard. :AOK

    Right now, my favorites are the Shiva & Diezel Einstein. Both are awesome, however the Einstein Ch 2 is the best lead sound I've ever played or heard so it usually wins when I can only use one amp...........

    The Diezel's are the only amps I've ever owned/played that do not require some kind of a boost for the lead channels. If I use the Shiva by itself I have to use a tube screamer or something of that sort to get the creamy sustain similar to the Diezel's lead channels.....
     
  16. drweller

    drweller Member

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    Have a Splawn Competition. 25 watts in Triode mode. Great for those club gigs. Wicked loud in Pentode mode (50 watts). Played around with the QR - great tones, but 100 watts was WAY too much.

    I use the guitar volume for cleaner tones...and a clean boost to push it a little harder every once in a while. Gears are WONDERFUL for different amp tones w/one head...Plexi to all flavors of hot-rod JCM800. Awesome.

    While I love how tight the amps are (not into the Marshall 'farty'/loose bass) they do tend more on the bright side. Very articulate amps. Awesome value for sure!! Love my Splawn. Am done with the High-gain amps after picking up the Splawn Competition - was perfect for my application.
     
  17. waylay00

    waylay00 Member

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    Yeah, the newer Splawns have a different master volume, which makes them MUCH more usable at lower volumes. I use mine at home all the time.
     
  18. natemeanie

    natemeanie Supporting Member

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    Have owned both, and am a multiple Splawn owner. Honestly, just listen to the clips... The Shiva has a better clean sound compared to the Splawn (think Fender vs. JTM45), but if you are looking for a ht rod Marshall OD tone then the Splawn wins hands down. As someone said earlier, the Shiva is JUST lacking in the OD dept. In conclusion, I vote Splawn.
     
  19. 1973Marshall

    1973Marshall Member

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    Wow I might have wrote the EXACT same thing about the Shiva. I have VERY limited experience with the Splawns but it matches yours and ED82846's ideas.

    I have always wanted to add a Matchless Clubman to my arsenal btw
     
  20. SJR

    SJR Member

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    Has anyone compared a Splawn Super Stock to a Shiva?
     

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