Talk to me about Marshall super lead

InkStained

Member
Messages
3,916
I turn the volume knob as far as it will go clockwise and wait for the police.

Best basement amp ever.


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zenas

Member
Messages
8,866
It's funny they sell so high since almost nobody can use the volume they put out. Heavy as hell too. Unlike a Twin Reverb you almost can't turn them down and get a good sound out of them. But they are cool so as useless as they really are are for 98% of us they sell for big bucks.
I have a 50 1987 sort of like the 100 watt 1959s but a pound or two lighter and about 3dbs less loud. From time to time I even plug it in.
 

gibson560

Member
Messages
68
Been using both of mine with a volume pedal. Seems to do the trick. Not sure about using a power brake. I've heard too many horror stories about them.


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Stu Blue

Member
Messages
3,167
Back in the 60s/70s most English folk set them either all tones at max (10) vols around 5-7, or all tones at noon except presence down at 2 (Thin Lizzie). Bass at zero in the studio was quite common too...

I'm a "all tones at max" vol at 6-7 myself, occasionally presence at zero when I have to use the PPIMV I have on mine..... runing TMB knobs equally seems to yield the best touch response on all four holers, JMT45, JMT45/100s too... ( I run JTM45s vols 7-8 or 10)

EDIT they sound "loverly" turned right down even without a MV at home for clean noodling and a fuzz face will give you JIMI as quiet as you like... lot of nonsense talked about this on TGP...
 

ken374

Member
Messages
6,983
I know a female that uses one when she plays the bars:) she keeps it on 4 and uses a tube screamer to push it some. My 68 custom twin very controllable it works great at bedroom or loud at 4 or so its not that crazy loud as people think.You cant turn it up too 8 with a pedal its just too much pushing the amp and sounds like crap. Clean I can run it higher though
 

miamimart

Member
Messages
793
There are a number of ways you can tame a Superlead (I own one built in 1974)
1. Remove 1 pair of tubes and turn the ohm switch down 1 click. This will bring down the volume a bit and give you a little more crunch and less headroom - if you are looking for that type of thing.
2. Install a PPIMV - it's an easy mod that is totally reversible and will allow you to have a ton of control with regard to the overall volume.
3. Get a GOOD attenuator - I used an Alex before I did the PPIMV mod - it is good if you really want to heat up your tubes, but buy a good one because cheap ones will degrade your sound.
4. Find the moderator Big Mike and subscribe to the JMP/JTM 4 Holer Marshall Circuit Appreciation thread. You will find tons of information about big Marshalls and learn a whole lot.
IMHO, the people who instantly start bashing big Marshalls as unuseable either have little experience with them, or are of the "turn every knob up to ten" school. You can do that with a Superlead but although they have a distinctive voice that is always present, they are much more subtle than that. Read and learn
 

JB6464

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,162
Dime the tone knobs , set volume at 6-8 , jump channels only if I need more warmth .
Re-Amp it !
Put a load on the amp , line out from load to effects (if needed) then to a single space power amp . Now you can set your overall volume from bedroom playing to Arenas .
Simple setup and easy to bring along to a gig without hearing the soundman bitching.
 

woof*

Member
Messages
8,620
Back in the 60s/70s most English folk set them either all tones at max (10) vols around 5-7, or all tones at noon except presence down at 2 (Thin Lizzie). Bass at zero in the studio was quite common too...

I'm a "all tones at max" vol at 6-7 myself, occasionally presence at zero when I have to use the PPIMV I have on mine..... runing TMB knobs equally seems to yield the best touch response on all four holers, JMT45, JMT45/100s too... ( I run JTM45s vols 7-8 or 10)

EDIT they sound "loverly" turned right down even without a MV at home for clean noodling and a fuzz face will give you JIMI as quiet as you like... lot of nonsense talked about this on TGP...
No kidding, so many posters parrot this crap. Totally usable all up and down the volume spectrum. 100 watt plexi has one of the best clean tones ever...ask SRV.
And also the 1987 50 watt is nothing like the 1959. They break up way too fast and are have nowhere near the clean tones. I've owned many of each over the years.
 

Geetarpicker

Member
Messages
2,988
All the tones full up might be too bright for some folks. If so try the tones all on 1/2, then the volume to taste as far as gain. I often would run the bass and volume full up, the rest on 4 to 6 or so. Many Superleads have a channel 1 bright cap, so they will come on very quickly volume wise and not have much low end until about 6. The bright cap can be easily removed then the EQ is much more linear on channel 1. Channel 1 is the standard Marshall classic rock tone but you may (will) have to crank it loud! The 2nd (ala bass) channel is much more tame in the highs and some prefer it especially with pedals. You can jump the lower 1 input to the top 2 input and blend the two channels. That all said I've had several Superleads and my favorite was my '68 plexi. It had the later split cathode lead circuit and I always ran everything on 10 but typically attenuated -8 to -12 db on stage, but I often recorded it WFO in the studio. Killer amps and one of the best distortion units (haha) ever that clean up from the guitar quite well. Some have very hot B+ and can be hard on output tubes, and a variac can really help to back the AC down maybe 10% or more like EVH did.
 

Custom50

Member
Messages
8,621
No kidding, so many posters parrot this crap. Totally usable all up and down the volume spectrum. 100 watt plexi has one of the best clean tones ever...ask SRV.
And also the 1987 50 watt is nothing like the 1959. They break up way too fast and are have nowhere near the clean tones. I've owned many of each over the years.
Pretty sure SRV used a 200 watt Marshall Major. But either way, yeah, plexis sound great clean too. It's just not the "Marshall sound" people think of right away. But man, they do sound amazing cranked!
 

woof*

Member
Messages
8,620
Pretty sure SRV used a 200 watt Marshall Major. But either way, yeah, plexis sound great clean too. It's just not the "Marshall sound" people think of right away. But man, they do sound amazing cranked!
He used both 100 watters and the Major. In fact early on he used the Club & Country combo. One of his 1959's is currently on exhibit in the Grammys museum in Hollywood.
Lots of great info in this thread.
 

winkofaneye

Member
Messages
815
I use a 1959 live every show. I don't dime the eq, as each room and stage have their own eq that I can dial in or out as needed. I jump the channels for the same reason, bright sounding stage dial out bright channel a little and vice versa. Every amp is slightly different, use the technique of eq at 0 then bring in until you notice a sonic difference, each knob. Note where this takes place and adjust from there. Volume I set to where the tubes start to break up, but not too much gain, this is personal preference. To tame the volume use an attenuator ( have used a Dr Z Airbrake for many years), use inefficient speakers, and beware of speaker beam by aiming cab away from front row, not drastically but enough to make a difference. Don't use EVs, it will be the loudest thing you ever hear! Try a 2x12 instead of 4x12. All the above work great for me. I am fulltime professional so if I'm too loud it affects my earning potential.....
 

mscotts

What?!
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,338
Best. Amp. Ever. More aggressive than my plexi but great sounding
amps. I play in a busy cover band and that's the one amp with a
few pedals that can do all the tones I need clean to mean old
to new. PPIMV or something similar recommended.
 

JB6464

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,162
Every amp is slightly different, use the technique of eq at 0 then bring in until you notice a sonic difference, each knob. Note where this takes place and adjust from there.

Don't use EVs, it will be the loudest thing you ever hear!
Why would you start at 0 then bring the tone knobs up when Marshall amps have a passive EQ circuitry , you cut the frequencies you don't need as you turn down (counter clockwise) the knobs.
Your starting point sounds kind of backwards to me , that's like choking the tone stack off before letting it breath to see what frequencies the amp has to offer.

Also EV's are not any louder than playing Vintage 30's or any other 100db rated speaker.
Just because they are rated at 200w doesn't mean they are ridiculously louder than a 60w 100db rated speaker.
I've used 4X12's loaded with EVM12L's for years and I have had players drown me out in volume with their V30 loaded 1960 cabinets.
 
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Custom50

Member
Messages
8,621
He used both 100 watters and the Major. In fact early on he used the Club & Country combo. One of his 1959's is currently on exhibit in the Grammys museum in Hollywood.
Lots of great info in this thread.
Cool! I had no idea!
 






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