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Discussion in 'The Rack Space' started by OAJ73, Sep 9, 2017.
Less compression and odd order harmonics than you'd typically find in a high gain amp. Also, the eminence speakers fryette uses are very stiff in sound and feel, making the amps seem hard to play if you're used to the creaminess of more compressed amps. Using other speakers helps immensely, and the fanes they are now using are excellent.
I owned a Mesa studio preamp a while ago which is supposedly a similar preamp to the Mark iic+. The magic happens when you drop the middle slider of the graphic eq. Master of puppets type gain. I put my graphic eq pedal in the effects loop of my power amp (Fryette power station) with the synergy VH4 red channel on and had a similar level of gain.
First, you're overthinking this stuff LOL.
Second, forget about module versus amp. That's not how to look at these. If you want the amp, get the amp. If you want a versatile multi-preamp system, get the Synergy and a really good power amp.
Third, the guitar sounds of early Judas Priest and Iron Maiden were mostly recorded with old Marshalls and really didn't have much gain or low end, especially compared with modern amps. The closest sounding preamp I've found is the Metropoulos Metro with the gain set to just above 0 and treble turned up a little. I wouldn't look to the Uberschall, VH4, Savage, Powerball or Ecstacy for those sounds as they have much more modern voicings.
The Powerball is a monster single note riffing machine. "Smooth" it most definitely ain't. Mean. It's not a lead amp IMHO as it's just too harsh sounding for that. The Ecstacy is a lot smoother.
The Diezel VH4 is a *great* metal preamp, but doesn't have quite the personality that the Ecstacy, Uberschall or Powerball have. It's actually very Boogie-like to my ears and is a lot more versatile.
If in doubt, just buy a used one and try it out. If you don't like it, you can always sell it for what you paid for it. Good luck!
Regarding my Savage vs Powerball question : I have a Savage and like it a lot, but I have to sell it in a package with the Syn-30 head, to someone who can't invest in a real Savage amp. I'm keeping a Syn-2 to use all my modules in a Mesa TC-50 loop. I will still need a high gain modern metal module, not sure if I'll get another Savage module, or Powerball, or a Uberschall. The other module in my Syn-2 will mostly be the Vai one.
I made a video with the Vai module, and a Jaded Faith MK X, in the Mesa amp loop. It's not meant to be a proper demo, that's why it's unlisted :
Definitely. I went into the Synergy thing with the correct mindset, I think. Which is partially why I am curious as I don't expect the modules to be exactly like the amp they are named after... I am interested in how the actual modules compare. I got the Synergy stuff because it is a modular system with premium quality components to make my own rig and have a bunch of really high quality sounds tailored to my tastes and standards.
If I just wanted a specific amp, I would buy that specific amp. In fact I have already done that numerous times, like any good TGPer.
Yeah, that was not going to be the main focus. I was trying to get a feel for whether it was versatile or not. Point being, I understand that it is not likely to be a good module for cleans but was curious if the lower gain channel got down to a good hard rock crunch. So I could have two solid sounds from the module or if it is basically just a one trick pony.
Re: The Metro module. Noted. That one is further down my list but is definitely on the radar, too.
Yeah, the Ecstasy I have already and man that module totally delivers. I like the idea of a 'riffing machine'...
Interesting. Makes me want to check out some vids on it. As noted, I like some versatility... this next module is going to be supplemental. I have all my basics covered now. I don't have anything Mesa-like.
No doubt; am definitely not agonizing over it that is one of the great things about all this modular stuff... I'm surely going to amass a serious collection regardless. It is just too much fun not to. Being able to swap stuff around or trade, etc, is awesome.
I love the module discussion and hearing others thoughts so that is really why I'm asking. A lot of times I will get tips/insights from another person's opinion in threads like this and the whole point of the forum is to chat about gear! Really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts on the ones you have used!
Your point is valid. I like the BMan with a pedal like a Barber gain changer for a crunchy sound. The BMan is more touch sensitive than the Plexi and VH4 are. I am debating my next module being the twin / deluxe or the OS. The OS sounded a little chubby when driven hard by Henning on YouTube. The BE-BB has a clean channel and is also on my GAS list.
I think I have a similar mindset. I own a few amps, and would rather avoid buying too many more.
I got tired of buying and selling so many Marshall in a box type pedals to try to get Marshall tones out of my main amps (Mesa Mark V and Allen Encore, plus a Trinity Triwatt I'm building). I had a JVM410H (or whatever it was called) a few years back, and it was a monster. It did far more than the Plex thing. But I didn't really need a 100 watt beast. Plus, I rolled those funds into the Mesa. And I'd rather avoid buying a non Master volume Plexi type amp/cab, etc.
So the idea of a bunch of actual tube preamps seemed a lot better than simple pedals. Adding a "Marshall channel or two" to my Mesa, and taking advantage of the 15/45/90 power settings seemed like a better idea than said pedals.
Along the way, I picked up the AC module to add some Voxiness too. I know it's not the same as an actual AC30, Matchless, or whatever. But so far, I'm happier with the "Vox channels" that the AC module gives me than a bunch of Vox in a box pedals I've bought and sold. It's not perfect. I kind of wish it had one normal 12AX7 channel and the other was an EF86 to get all that Vox/Matchless/Trinity TC-15 type flavor. But for now, it scratches the jangle itch.
I know I'm not going to crank up the Plexi module into a 6L6 Mesa power amp and relive the full experience of playing a Marshall half stack. There aren't EL34s and there isn't a 4x12. Same goes for the AC module through that power section never, ever really duplicating Brian May's AC 30 with the knobs all dimed thing. There aren't four EL84s screaming their death cries into a pair of Alnico Blues. But I find that the Synergy stuff is still a lot closer to playing through those amps than any pedal. They FEEL like amps. Volume knob control from your guitar ... the way each takes pedals ... etc.
Apologies for the hyper-specificity, but has anyone tried the Synergy through the loop of a Mesa Boogie California Tweed? Thought there was some mention a while back in this thread of someone trying that.
Have been using an axe FX 3 for effects with mynsyn1 with good results, today tried using an ir in the axe FX through studio monitors, was ok, similar to the direct out with the cab enabled.l. But then used the tube pre amp model (running the syn 1 into that) the tube pre amp model in th ease FX is meant to be usable as a poweramp symbol sounded great with the plexi and 800 modules, they both sounded like, well a plexi and an 800
if you have a fractal axe FX I’d recommend trying this.
Great recommendation. I have been using an Axe 2 for this when monitoring direct out, works the same way as the III (Have a III in a different rig, too ). Check out @Leon Todd s video on this; it is AX8 but totally applies to all the Fractals:
Cool vid, hadn’t seen that one (and gave me a few ideas to try tomorrow!)
Bogner Ecstasy or Soldano SLO? Please help!
I've seen a bunch of online reviews and both of these seem to fall into the "must have" category. But I only need one module, so...
I have a SYN-2 in the loop of my Mesa Mark V. I like the Synergy Plexi module in one slot. I'm looking to replace the Morgan AC module in the second slot. I like the Vox flavor. But I feel I can get lower gain tones with a British lean out of the blue channel of the Plexi module or the Edge mode of channel two of the Mesa.
So I'm leaning towards simply going with a higher gain module there that will compliment the Plexi as well as the available Mark V channels: Bogner Ecstasy or Soldano SLO. I'm looking for help to push me in one direction or the other to decide. I'm wondering which might contrast better with the Mesa channels and compliment that Plexi channel.
I had been using the Mark V like this with the Plexi and AC modules:
- Fat mode channel one to get a very even clean tone that also takes pedals well
- Crunch mode channel two for basic rock rhythm type tone, mostly because I've never really dialed in the Mark I mode; might lean towards Edge mode when not using the AC
- Mark IV mode channel three
- Plexi blue channel really low gain so the guitar cleans up with the volume back, but snarls a little when pushed
- Plexi red channel just mid gain to basically be the blue plus "more"
In this setup, the Plexi module adds nice lower gain Marshall type flavor to my amp. Right now, Mark IV mode is my heaviest, but it doesn't seem as high gain as a few of the available Synergy modules. And it doesn't really have that '80s heavy rock sound, IMO. I know that many people played SLOs back in the day (even Clapton). But other than being high gain, I really don't know what they really are. Are they hot rod Marshall circuits with 6L6s? Are they hot rod Fenders? Don't know. FWIW, I have a lot more of an idea what the Bogner does.
Between the SLO and Ecstasy:
1) Which one is higher gain?
2) Which one is most different than the gain channels already in the Mesa?
3) Which one would serve more as the higher gain British channels to sort of extend the Plexi module?
1. Both. Depends on how you set the controls.
2. Both. Depends on how you set the controls.
3. Neither. If you're looking for Marshall sounds I recommend the Metro.
They're both great preamps, one is more vintage voiced (SLO) and the other more modern (Ecstacy).
Thanks. I figure the Metro is more of the Plexi thing that I mostly have covered with the Plexi module. I was looking for a higher gain thing.
LOL. The Metro is a high gain preamp, just with a Marshall voicing.
Lead Out Loud ?
the Bogners are the more Marshall based of the 2
I might recommend an Uber as well
The first channel before you go to channel 2 can be like a souped up Jcm800
nice thing is that it has 2 separate channels
So you could set up rhythm lead tones
It’s more Marshall on steroids design than the SLO IMO
but the Soldano still kills
that’s freaking cool so I could run a Syn 2 right into the FM3 use tube preamp /power amp cab irs and FX
And use the USB interface to record