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SS Power amp!! - Matrix GT800FX v VHT 2:90:2

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by paulmapp8306, May 23, 2011.

  1. paulmapp8306

    paulmapp8306 Member

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    So, I posted a thread about the Matrix XT800 power amp that I tried with my Axe-FX. I A/Bd it with my VHT 2:50:2 and it was pretty good. i wasnt sure if I wanted to let the VHt go though.

    Anyway, myself and a few other users had some input with Matrix and a tweeked version was produced - named the GT800FX. This had a lower fan noise, lowe input impedance, tweeks to the high and Low Freq damping, and inclusion of combi ins (Jack/XLR) and combi outs (Jack/Speakons) as standard.

    The first 30 went out a couple of weeks ago and reviews have been generally glowing.

    Well, a couple of guys got together in California to comapre the VHT 2:90:2 with the GT800FX. Surprising result !!

    Read that review here:

    http://forum.fractalaudio.com/amps-cabs/36741-amp-shootout-matrix-gt800fx-vs-vht-2-90-2-a.html

    And also the original thread on the development of the GT, along with comparrisons and reviews from the first owners here:

    http://forum.fractalaudio.com/amps-cabs/33726-new-matrix-gt800fx-amp-axe-fx.html

    Ive posted it here, because this amp is just as viable for ownersof other modellers. Rack users would benefit most - so 11r, GSP1101, Boss GT Pros, Pod Pros etc - though theres no reason why user of floor based units couldnt rack one for use with a cab rather than an amp head.
     
  2. smilefan

    smilefan Member

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    I know the guy who posted that review on the Fractal Forum.
    What a jerk. Alcoholic, know-it-all, and I believe he was even
    a pedalphile at one point.

    Glad they don't let people like that over here. ;)
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  3. Robert Burns

    Robert Burns Member

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    Here is how i vote... :))

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Proco

    Proco Member

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    Boy, that was harsh :eeks
     
  5. paulmapp8306

    paulmapp8306 Member

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    yeh - well you can be as harsh as you like when taking the piss out of yourself :)
     
  6. paulmapp8306

    paulmapp8306 Member

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    Yeh, but your not using it with a modelling solution, your using it with valve pres. Id vote the same in that case.

    the GT800FX is designed to work with modellers. It was initially the XT800 that was designed to drive high Freq units in line arrays. It was tweeked to give better response for guitar applications when this market became apparent to Matrix - along with input from 4 guitarists (one a prop working stage performer, other a session player and studio engineer, one semi pro functions guitarist and another hobbyist with a background in electronics).

    It has resulted in an amp that responds more like a valve amp than any other SS amp Ive heard (and on par with many actual valve options), while retaining the flat freq respose modellers need. All this in a 1U light (3.7kg) package. That makes it space friendly, and back friendly too. No upkeep (valve replacements) etc.

    if your using valve pres, or using modelelrs but arnt bothered with the weight, cost, maintenance, and space a really good valve power amp requires, then I would maybe agree.
     
  7. Axe-Man

    Axe-Man Member

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    From what I have taken from the original thread, the Axe Fx was tweaked heavily to make the SS poweramp sound like the VHT.

    If your modeller doesn't have as many crazy EQ or tweakable settings (well pretty much every modeller apart from the Axe - tube preamps included) the SS amp likely isn't going to yeld such comparable results.

    Ultimately, it sounds like a great, lightweight product to run with an Axe or Axe II but likely it could frustrate users of any other units.

    I would like to get some feedback from Eleven Rack and HD500 users.
     
  8. paulmapp8306

    paulmapp8306 Member

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    Are - well, i have a HD500 as a backup for my Axe and the Matrix works just fine with it :)

    Heavily tweeked is a bit of a statement. All I did was raise the global EQ by a db at 2 and 4k, and around 0.5db at 125hz. I added a little sag in the master, but that was basically resetting it to default as Id previously lowered it to make it work with the VHT.
     
  9. acbarros

    acbarros Member

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    I own a GT800FX and I´m A/B testing it against my Rocktron Velocity 300. It´s a GREAT power amp, I´m loving it and I really intend to put it in my 4U Gator as my final solution. But for 3 days I´m trying to make it sound as good as the Velocity (bridged -300W) thru my 1x12 cab loaded with a EVM 12L but without success. And I´ve tried your EQ tips too, but they weren´t enough. I still haven´t tried tweaking the amp block parameters however.

    For now all I have to say is that the Rocktron Velocity 300 delivers me almost the same good tones I get thru my KRK Rokit 8 that I use to build my patches.

    Nevertheless I´m still testing everything and that´s definitely not my final conclusion about that. And whatever it is I´ll keep both as I intend to keep a rig for GIGs with the AXE II and a backup rig with the Ultra.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2011
  10. smilefan

    smilefan Member

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    It was a gag. The guy who posted that review on Fractal site was me.

    Anytime you see the "wink" smiley, that's a hint.

    And "pedalphile", "pedal.....phile", as in distortion pedal.:p
     
  11. Guitartrue

    Guitartrue Member

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    ^^^^ LOL good one!
    I don't speak english very well so I was looking in googe translator what the hell is pedalphile...
     
  12. smilefan

    smilefan Member

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    As I have derailed Paul's most excellent post I'll throw down for the
    new amp he was pointing out. The British-built solid state Matrix GT800FX, designed
    specifically for modellers.

    I A/B'ed this new amp against a VHT 2/90/2 loaded with primo NOS tubes
    with another player for about 3 hours straight. At the finish line this
    Matrix amp got a full 95% of the sonic mojo of my bad ass VHT. I nearly fell out of my chair.
    Because it weighs about 8 pounds and is only 8 inches deep, and is a single rack space.

    After the test I decided to sell my VHT. I need an amp I can travel easily
    with, and the Matrix is ideal. Plus it is half the price of the big VHT.
    Definitely deserves some attention. There are extensive posts about it
    on the Fractal Forum. Many others who have heard it had similar comments to mine.
     
  13. javiereu

    javiereu Member

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    What version is your velocity?
     
  14. Guitar Josh

    Guitar Josh Resident Curmudgeon Silver Supporting Member

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    $800 for a solid state power amp is well beyond what I expected.
     
  15. smilefan

    smilefan Member

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    How about an $800 s/s amp that gets 95% of the performance
    of a $1700 VHT 2/90/2, and is half the size and 1/4 the weight?
    That has to be worth something.
     
  16. acbarros

    acbarros Member

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    The one with Reactance and Definition controls for each channel. I think there is not a newer version, I bought it last year (sometime in october).
     
  17. javiereu

    javiereu Member

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    Yeap, the 1 unit rack version. I've read some opinions that the old 2 space version sounds better, I think there shouldn't be much difference or any at all.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2011
  18. stratzrus

    stratzrus Philadelphia Jazz, Funk, and R&B Supporting Member

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    Don't "they" always say the older version sounds better no matter what it is? ;)
     
  19. Guitar Josh

    Guitar Josh Resident Curmudgeon Silver Supporting Member

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    I can promise you that a great deal of the head to head comparison was subjective desire.

    But you don't really get it. Why do people choose the Axe over 11R when the 11R is 95% as as good? Because people want that extra 5%.

    I want that extra 5% (assuming it's not more like 20%+).

    If you are going modeling anyway, you've already reduced weight a great deal, not to mention you could easily just go direct with Axe and reduce the whole thing down to a double space rack unit WITHOUT the power amp.

    I have no doubt this sounds nice. I just expected it to be cheaper. That's life.
     

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