Thinking about getting a Dr.Z Amp! Questions....

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by eric-d, Jan 22, 2006.


  1. eric-d

    eric-d Member

    Messages:
    3,414
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2005
    Location:
    Heaven, Hell, or Houston
    I've been a Fender guys for years..... Actually I've only owned one Fender amp since I've been playing... It's an older 99' hot rod deluxe. Well it's starting to crap out on me and I think it's time for a new and improved amp. At my shows I've used friend's RI Bassman's and Super Reverbs. I've been thinking and I really like the Dr. Z's I've played on at a local shop. Which one would you recommend and why??? Thanks!!
     
  2. riverastoasters

    riverastoasters Member

    Messages:
    2,924
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Planet X
    1: I would recommend the ones that you "really like".

    2: Because you really like them.

    3: You're welcome!!

    But seriously, unless there is something you don't like about the ones you've come across that you didn't mention, sounds like you're good to go.
     
  3. Lucky7

    Lucky7 Senior Member

    Messages:
    129
    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2006
    What might be closest to what you are used to playing through would be the Mazerati, Maz jr. or Maz Sr. I'd highly recommend the Ghia but for some it might not have enough clean head room. It is a very loud amp though. I would think any of these Z amps would be an easy transition for you from the Fender amps you mentioned. You can't go wrong with Dr. Z in my opinion. I played through an old Vibroverb for years and the Z's felt right at home after my verb got put on the bench. Good luck!
     
  4. T-bone

    T-bone Member

    Messages:
    440
    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    NewHampshire
    I've previously owned a R66 and a Maz 38 and did not bond with them. The 66 was cool but I couldn't turn it up to where it needed to be.Last year I took a chance on a Z28 head and it's been my #1 ever since.

    Perfect volume for smaller gigs- with single coils it has a fendery vibe-w/hums it can get a bit Marshally. Bass stays tight.

    I have the Z set up for a great rhythm sound(open chords,chimmy drones, and power chords) and use my guitars vol knob and picking dynamics to controll gain. There is plenty of gain(for me) on tap w/humbuckers but I really love how pedals react with this amp. So for leads I use a Honey Bee and a HotCake.

    The search is over for me.The only other amp I'm even thinking about buying is another 28 for back up!

    Just so you know-My bands sound is in the style of Wilco/Sun Volt/Roots rock thang.
     
  5. E-Rock

    E-Rock Member

    Messages:
    701
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2005
    Location:
    Seattle
    I just got a Z28 this weekend.
    All I can say is, best amp I have ever played, period.
    No bells and whistles, just great tone.
    I loved how thick, yet defined the sound is.
    I can't imagine a better sounding amp.
     
  6. The Whiz

    The Whiz Member

    Messages:
    4,565
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2004
    Location:
    5 7 5
    Great. Way to rub it in! I just sold my z28. :mad: ;)
     
  7. Guinness Lad

    Guinness Lad Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    15,589
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2004
    Location:
    On top a mountain of Chocolate Chips
    Having owned 3 Dr.Z's, the Route 66, Carman Ghia and the Studio Deluxe and played all the others except for the Route 88? The closest amp to a Fender with the least amount of change by you would be the Maz Sr. The Maz Sr. is an upgraded Studio Deluxe but be forewarned he uses Celestion speakers which will sound totally different then Eminence speakers. None of the Z stuff does high fi clean like a Fender (Carr, Tone King etc...) there is always a little roundness to the tone. If your expecting to duplicate a Fender exactly, it won't happen. That being said the Maz Sr. is a great amplifier, especially if you like Fenders.
     
  8. jerseydrew

    jerseydrew Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,518
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Location:
    northern Jersey
    I actually just purchased a Carmen Ghia head. I just got it last week and I can't stop playing it. I have other amps but I must play this one.

    BTW, it loves pedals!
     
  9. Mayflower

    Mayflower Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    8,459
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2004
    I hear some "Queen" playing in the background.

    I like the Maz Jr for the money/headroom/features/tone.
     
  10. nashvillesteve

    nashvillesteve Member

    Messages:
    3,985
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2005
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    I love my Carmen Ghia. It's a fun amp to play. Sounds great, loves to be turned up a bit and boosted with pedals... Great sounding matching 1x12" cab that came with it as well. The tone knob is more like a wah pot, you just kind of turn it to "focus" on your guitar's sound and the color you want, then turn up the volume. I've had it for about 5 or 6 years now, it's not going anywhere. There is great low end, you won't miss reverb at all, the amp has this great give and sag, the overdrive is awesome. Great amp, built like a rock. Plus, Dr. Z seems like a great guy. I've spoken to him on the phone, over email and see him post at the Dr. Z Amplifier Forum (link on the main Dr. Z website), he is helpful and really puts a lot into his amps. One of my tech friends wanted to see it when I first got it and he was really impressed with the military-spec components and build quality. I like the two knob, lower-wattage approach. Oh, and it's LOUD. Don't let the 18 watt rating fool you. This is a class A amp, so its wattage rating with regard to volume is not on the same scale as that of a Fender or class A/B amp. Speaker surface area has more to do with apparent volume, if I remember correctly. Anyway, not trying to get technical here, but I played it sitting in with a couple live bands. Once with a blues group, Ghia at 1:00, my friend's Silverface Super Reverb was at 6, equal volume. The other show was an outdoor show, I think the other guy had a Rivera half stack or something like that, the Ghia kept up with the band great and really cut through wonderfully both times (even got comments about the tone from players and non-players- very cool, maybe less about the playing...). So, anyway, it's a pretty gigable amp, and if you are micing for the PA, you should be fine. Highly recommended (high resale value, if you don't like it for some strange reason)...
     
  11. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,480
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2003
    Location:
    near Philly
    One of the ones you've played at the local shop.

    Why?

    Because you already like it(them)!
     
  12. eric-d

    eric-d Member

    Messages:
    3,414
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2005
    Location:
    Heaven, Hell, or Houston
    Hmmm.... so which one is the most Fender sounding and which is the most plexi sounding from ya'll experience??? Thanks again for all the help and smart ass'd comments... :p
     
  13. hipfan

    hipfan Member

    Messages:
    2,302
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2002
    Location:
    Evanston, IL
    The other guitarist in my band has a Maz38 2x12, and yes it can be set up to be very blackface sounding. Springy, with a bright top end and a dip in the mids. And that's through G12H-30 and V30 speakers too, which don't really lend themselves to classic Fender tones. You can also set it up to have a very "clear" middy grind if you so choose.

    For rocking out, man the 6545 is the stuff. It does some sweet, sweet grind. I had one, and I miss it very often. I wouldn't call it exactly "plexi" sounding though. Its tonestack is more like a old Fender, but with the gain level of a non-master Marshall IMO. I always dimed the mids and barely cracked open the bass control, and it sounded great.
     
  14. laurencer83

    laurencer83 Member

    Messages:
    409
    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Location:
    half way to everywhere
    i can't believe no one's mentioned the RXES! the rxes is a rock monster! and if you can afford to put some nos tubes in it will turn into a KING KONG of a rock amp. i'm not great at describing sounds with words but it just sounds good, period.

    there's a lot of more expensive stuff that i'm sure sounds great but you can't beat the rxes for it's value(used especially). i bought mine used off ebay for only $1000 shipped! i put in a bunch of old tubes from kcanostubes but they didn't improve it that much and i spent a boatload. but then i sold those tubes and bought some from fellow tgp member orlando(don't know his screen name, "guitarman" something). his were anos and a lot less expensive. but the improvment in tone was more then audible.

    and another thing too, the tone knobs work great. it's not your normal Z controls like on the delta/66/kt45/z28. but there's a wide range of tones. with the mid control alone you can voice it more toward a fender(low mids) or more toward a marshall/vox(more mids).

    great amp!
     
  15. big mike

    big mike Fixed Bias Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    20,857
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Location:
    Raider Nation
    Z28!!!!

    Best amp ever! For all the reasons listed above.
     
  16. beckanon

    beckanon Member

    Messages:
    98
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    Location:
    You are there...I am here.
    The Z28 is supposed to have very nice "blackface" sounding cleans with good spank, snap, chime and sparkle, then when you turn up the juice it overdrives like a plexi.
     
  17. big mike

    big mike Fixed Bias Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    20,857
    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2003
    Location:
    Raider Nation
    I dunno bout blackface...it's got more and better mids, and breaks up sooner. More like a morph between tweed and brownface, with the Z magic thrown in.

    But i hate comparing them to Fender. While it's got American character, it's SO much more, and like half the knobs!
     
  18. 55 Jr

    55 Jr Member

    Messages:
    371
    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2002
    I had a Z-28 for almost a year. At first I thought I might have found the answer. ItÂ’s got a tough two fisted tone that I found appealing. I had just sold a Matchless Spitfire that was too bright with not enough gain. The Z-28 was really looking good.
    However after playing many times in a band situation I began to notice a low mid honk that persisted. Trying to dial it out reduced the available gain to levels too low for my taste.
    I was using it with a Bogner ported cab. Perhaps going with an open back cab would have helped.

    I can tell you this. A cranked Z-28 sounds like a Z-28. Nothing like a plexi.

    Best regards,

    Brian
     
  19. eric-d

    eric-d Member

    Messages:
    3,414
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2005
    Location:
    Heaven, Hell, or Houston
    Hmmm... I noticed Doyle II was trying a Route 66 for a while or at least on Dr. Z's webpage mentioned him using one. I'm going to have to try them out again. It's been a few months since I messed around on them. I remember liking the Ghia, Mazerati, but I can't remember if they had a Maz or a R.66 ....
     
  20. ejecta

    ejecta Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,346
    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2005
    Z28! Great America tones with a Z twist at reasonable volumes. Will get nice and dirty with tight bottom. Ive noticed it has nice boxy tonality that I like but some may not.

    Love it! It a keeper!
     

Share This Page