Superbass or Superlead?????

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by dewman, Oct 26, 2008.

  1. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    I'd like to get a 100 watter Germino or Marshall to use as a foundation for pedals primarily, but occasionally to crank up (attenuated) to get that overdrive going. I mostly play Les Pauls but have been having fun with a Strat lately and would probably emulate a Doyle Bramhall II sort of setup with a 4x12 or maybe a 2x12, with attenuation.

    Don't know if I can dial in a superbass tone with a superlead if the controls are tones down to darken the amp. I guess I'd appreciate the extra gain of the split cathode, especially for Les Pauls, and also something that sounds good with fuzzes.

    I'd not run this amp flat out at all, just loud enough to get that full low end thing going on. I'd likely get an Ultimate Attenuator for it.

    So what's your opinions on the Superlead circuit versus Superbass circuit?
     
  2. ROKY

    ROKY Member

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    Overall .. you might want to go with the Super Lead .

    Darker tones can be had by using the normal input and blending in
    the bright volume(after linking the inputs of course..).

    You could also go into the normal input and run the presence, full-on.

    You can flatten the mids out a good bit by turning the mid control back --
    the slope resistors ARE different between the bass and lead circuits, but
    I've had good results in a lead circuit by just bringing the mids down.

    I like the idea of a split cathode(lead) for more gain combined with a
    flatter frequency(bass) response voicing .
    If you're buying a new Germino, I'm sure Greg would customize it for you.

    The Fillmore, I'm pretty sure is similar in this respect since it is an EL34
    amp that retains the JTM(Bass circuit) voicing but is split cathode.

    There was a Fillmore in the Emporium, recently - - don't know if it sold or not..

    The Headroom 100 [w/ bass circuit] might be better if you wanted a tighter
    feeling amp, as it has more pwr. supply filtering vs. the Fillmore; which is the
    early Super Lead w/ lower filtering .

    Clapton was using the earlier [Black Flag] JTM-100s w/ his Gibsons.

    Great explosive, raw, bluesy crunch tones that didn't get too saturated when
    wound up.

     
  3. sparkman

    sparkman Silver Supporting Member

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    Dewman--I'm definitely partial to the Superlead voicing. That singing sustain provided by the Headroom 100 superlead version is just amazing. It does, however, come with a price in volume. With that said, though, I'm just about done with attenuation. Everything I've tried carries a compromise with it, and the amp just sounds better without it (in my opinion). I'd much rather deal with the volume issues and have better tone. I remember a quote from Greg Germino on one of his interviews on the Steelbender site about the tone of big amps through big (multiple cabs)--to me--that's where my greatest tones have been found.
     
  4. imguitardan

    imguitardan Member

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    I have a '73 100 watt Super Bass that I had switched out to a Super Lead (I cut the bright cap on the Bright input jack right away and liked it much better).

    The SB sounded a lot like my '59 RI Bassman (nice cleans, round tone, not very focused breakup). As a SL, the gain is more focused but the clean is still nice albeit a little more spanky. I don't think I could hang with a SL that had the bright cap enacted.

    On a sidenote, do most boutique Marshall knockoffs use the bright cap on the treble input? Just curious, I'm looking for a JTM45 copy or varient.
     
  5. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    great idea to snip the bright cap on a superlead...hmmm tat could be the ticket. going into the bass input could also get those lower gain tones of a quasi superbass.

    keep those opinions coming. anyoe attenuate with the Ultimate Attenuator on their superlead or superbass? I pnly planed to use enough to bring the volume into check live primarily. I mention the UA because of the transparency versus other ones like the Airbrake.
     
  6. imguitardan

    imguitardan Member

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    I have a Hotplate and PPIMV...I don't "like" to use either but if you only drop the Hotplate down to 4 or 8 dB, the attenuation is relatively subtle for clean/broken up tones (for cranked tone, the full attenuation sounds fine). If I use the Hotplate, I'll set the Master Volume on the amp at around 7 (any less sucks the tone out). With the two combined, you could do just about anything. I like the PPIMV on 7 as my 1st line of defense if I'm told to turn down. I'm currently looking for a JTM45 so I can get my tones w/out killed any one.
     
  7. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    Yeah I mainly would like the bi tone of big iron from these amps and clearly realize that I ain't gonna be able to crank these anywhere. The attenuation is to reduce volume, rather than to try to get a white hot amp to be whisper quiet. I am shooting for a level of attenuation of a 100 watter to be in the volume range (yet still tonefull) of a Deluxe Reverb or Super Reverb. I can go 2-3 clicks off a Dr. Z airbrake with my Germino and it still sounds good. Any more and it starts to suck. The UA is supposed to be even better with more attenuation before it starts to sound 'attenuated', so I figured that might be a way to go possibly if it can tame a Marshal non master volume 100 watter enough without removing the tone and low end in live situations.
     
  8. Bo Faulkner

    Bo Faulkner Member

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    Hey if you get one of those UA's let me know because I want to try one out!!.. My 50 watter is a lead circuit and the bright cap is rather obnoxius until you reach about 2 oclock on the volume. The club 40 uses a cap that is about 10 times lower.. I'd say the Doyle tone is more associated with the bass version. My 50 is more Angus than Doyle
     
  9. Geetarpicker

    Geetarpicker Member

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    Truly I really like my original '68 Superbass with pedals better than my '68 Superlead which I prefered straight in. Sometimes less gain is a better pedal foundation. Also plently of pedals are voiced for Silver/Blackface Fender amps which have scooped mids and a superbass is also somewhat scooped like a tweed bassman/jtm45. That said, with the superbass if you dime the mids and cut the bass you can almost gets superlead type tone albiet with less gain. Some think the Superbass amps are too dark but actually my superbass always has plenty of high end without ever having to dime the treble and/or presence.

    To me the superlead circuit is more mid and high heavy than a superbass just about any way you set it. The extra gain of a superlead can make some effects quite noisy, compared to the same pedals on a lower gain superbass.

    Just my .02 cents...
     
  10. dewman

    dewman Gold Supporting Member

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    Fillmore or HR100 Germino circuit???
     
  11. Roe

    Roe Member

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    the bass/jtm circuit is a much better platform for pedals in my experience (I own 4 of these amps and have built 3 and treaked others). the early amps have low filtering which gives a great open and loose bluesy feel. the later amps are tighter, stiffer and louder. these are better for heavier stuff and loads of distortion. all 100watters are way loud except the first kt66s amps, the jtm45/100s.
     
  12. Wagster

    Wagster Member

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    Roe,
    How loud is the JTM45/100?I have a JCM800 2204 that is really loud when wound up.Is the 45/100 a lot louder?
     
  13. Roe

    Roe Member

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    no, the 45/100 puts out ca 70watts before breakup and have a very warm sounds. its nto as bright and aggressive as the later amps and appears not as loud. it is about as loud as a standard 50w
     
  14. Wagster

    Wagster Member

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    Thanks!
     

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