Two Rock Onyx and CR. Educate Me

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by p.snail, Mar 13, 2006.


  1. p.snail

    p.snail Supporting Member

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    I'm more of a class A kind of guy and I'm working on getting my Matchless back from a buyer who isn't really thrilled with it. That being said I love John Mayer's tone and I know he's using TR's. I was goofing around on the Two Rock website and started reading a little about the amps and came across the Onyx. Two Rock says it's the only 2 channel amp they make with seperate signal paths. I had a Fuchs ODS Mod and I know the Custom Reverb is setup a lot like that amp. What is the advantage of this over the Onyx design? Seems like the CR costs a lot more, but the Onyx makes more sense to me. Is there a reason the single eq would be better? Is it made that way for accuracy's sake, to stay true to the Dumble design? Really just curious. I know these amps are great and I have long dreamed of owning such a beast. I tried with the Fuchs Mod, but it wasn't right for me. As I'm saving my pennies I'm just curious which one I should be aiming for. Also, how do the older model TR's compare like the Jade and the Opal? They seem to be the predecessor to the CR.
     
  2. cnardone

    cnardone Supporting Member

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    I played a Jade and it sounded great. It is not P-T-P the way the rest are. It was a "budget" model. Still sounded great. THis might come out wrong but the Opal has almost a little Marshall to the overdrive. Not that anyone would think, "Oh!! That is a Marshall". But I definitely remember thinking that these were Allman Brother approved tones coming out of the Opal. Very different from the Custom / CR line. Does that help?
     
  3. p.snail

    p.snail Supporting Member

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    Yeah, so is it safe to say that the Onyx doesn't have as much gain as the CR or is it the other way around?
     
  4. roggae

    roggae Member

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    The biggest different is obviously that the Onyx has seperate EQ knobs for the Clean and Overdrive channels. The Onyx also doesn't have the switches for Bright, Mid, and Deep. If you're looking for completely different EQ from the 'two' channels, this is your only option from TR as far as their Doomble-esque offerings.

    From my experience (I have a CR, had an Opal and a TR Proto, and have played the Onyx), the Onyx seems a little more hi-fi on the clean channel, and by default the clean channel of the Onyx sounds more like the clean channel on the CR with the Bright and Deep switches set to the "on" position.

    I think the Onyx may also have slightly less sag to it's clean channel, but I'd wait for someone else (LSchefman?) to chime in here about that. Gainwise, both have more than I'd ever need, so you'll have to wait on someone else about that one as well.
     
  5. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny Member

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    if you're a class A guy, you'll HATE the TR's. the feel of say a Bad Cat or a Matchless is totally different. and if you're used to the open airy cleans of said amps, playing a TR might actually be a bit of a disappointment, given their tighter more compressed nature.

    still, the TR's are terrific amps and worthy in any stable for the sound they do produce.
     
  6. fenderbender4

    fenderbender4 Gold Supporting Member

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    Okay:

    Onyx: More hi-fi definitely. Clean is amazing. Great stuff. The gain I would say is much more Marshally and not so much Dumble, more gain In the rock genre than the fusion. Separate EQ's, reverb, and presence.

    CR: More vintagey. Much more mid-pronounced sound, can get close to Onyx with the bright and deep, but not the same. More sag. Gain is mid-heavy very dumblish.

    If you like John Mayer's tone and really really really want that, go with the CR. Both are phenomenal amps and I like them both equally (played both), they're just different flavors.

    Once again this is all an opinion, but that's what I think and hear. Also, I don't know about this part, but I know the regular CR was cheaper than the Onyx, but I don't know how the Artist compares with it now.
     
  7. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    The CR is the Signature model which is about 5K$ out the door,IIRC...
     
  8. OldSchool

    OldSchool Senior Member

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    Are you sure ? I have a Emerald pro reverb and it has a footswitchable separate Clean and Gain channel each with Master volumes. Are you saying that it doesn't have a separate signal path? :confused:
     
  9. OldSchool

    OldSchool Senior Member

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    I used to balk at those prices until I tried one..........now I just work alot of Overtime to pay for 'em.............[​IMG]
     
  10. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    >>The CR is the Signature model which is about 5K$ out the door,IIRC...<<

    Actually, the CR is now the CR Artist, which is different from the CR Signature.

    The Onyx was originally a more expensive model than the CR, IIRC, but I don't know about the new nomenclature. I have an Onyx Sig, but didn't get pricing on anything else, because I wasn't actually considering the other models.

    Fenderbender has it about right, except you can get Dumbly sounds out of the Onyx if you choose to (I rarely do). The cool thing about the Onyx is that it's extremely versatile. You can go in a lot of sonic directions with it.

    >>if you're a class A guy, you'll HATE the TR's<<

    Not so! I love Class A amps, and I ALSO love TRs. Not mutually exclusive at all. Different flavors, both good.

    >>Are you sure ? I have a Emerald pro reverb and it has a footswitchable separate Clean and Gain channel each with Master volumes. Are you saying that it doesn't have a separate signal path?<<

    It has two channels, but the settings on clean affect the settings on high gain, as you know. With the Onyx, there are two separate sets of EQ, and the gain settings are independent. This kind of control layout operates more like a standard two-channel amp such as a Mesa. It makes matters simpler for doofuses like me who got used to the controls on amps like the Tremoverb.
     
  11. p.snail

    p.snail Supporting Member

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    It looks like the Onyx suits me more than the CR from what you all are describing. I do love JM's tone, but I read the interview on the TR website about those amps. He doesn't even use the drive channel on that amp, he uses some crappy Marshall Bluesbreaker pedal with it. It just goes to show that anything can be cool if you use it right. The Fuchs was a pain in the @ss to dial in. The amp sounded really good, but I never could get the clean and Dirty channels to balance. I like having control of the two channels seperately. If the CR sounds better then that's a different story, but based on what I've read here I think the Onyx is more my tempo. I've got lots of time to think about it, because they only cost a kajillion dollars, so it'll take me a while before I can afford one. I was really just curious. I read on another thread that the EM Pro can be had for under 2K if you can find one. Is this more of the Dumble or Marshall flavor?
     
  12. GuitarsFromMars

    GuitarsFromMars Member

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    I have to play mine so I don't have time to do the OT(LOL).
     
  13. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    >>I read on another thread that the EM Pro can be had for under 2K if you can find one. Is this more of the Dumble or Marshall flavor?<<

    Probably comes closer to Dumble tones.
     
  14. zoooombiex

    zoooombiex Supporting Member

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    that's about right - they usually seem to go between 1800 and 2200. of all the two-rock models i've tried, the em. pro does the most stereotypically "dumble" sound right out of the box. others models can be dialed in to get great dumble sounds (and have some other possible advantages), but the em. pro makes it effortless.

    the opal is very close in many ways. and as someone else mentioned, has a bit of a marshall bite to it. lots of gain on tap.

    if you think the shared tone controls might be an issue, i'd steer you away from the custom/reverb line. they have the most interdependent channels. the opal & emeralds have internal tone controls for the lead channel that the custom series does not. so although the external tone controls still affect the lead channel, you can open it up and tweak it a bit. but for the ease of dialing things in, i would have to think the onyx would be the winner.
     
  15. bluessyndicate

    bluessyndicate Supporting Member

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    If I recall correctly the Two Rock LTD has a class A mode....perhaps that is worth looking into if you can find one used. At one point Joe and Bill had one laying around somewhere. I almost bought that instead of a CR or Onyx..but ended up with the CR Sig.
     
  16. OldSchool

    OldSchool Senior Member

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    Gotcha......I guess that would be cool but I'm happy enough with the way it is. :BEER
     
  17. OldSchool

    OldSchool Senior Member

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  18. p.snail

    p.snail Supporting Member

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    If I understand the control layout correctly on the TR sig and other, the clean channel gain and eq directly effect the OD channel right? Therefore, control wise it's setup exactly like the Fuchs. Do you experience any of the balancing act frustrations with the TR's, excluding the Onyx?
     
  19. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    I had an LTD in my studio for a few weeks, and it was a great amp. After a few days of finding what did and didn't work with my instruments, setting it up was easy.

    The LTD had the internal EQ trimmers for the gain channel brought out to rear panel knobs, but the other TRs have internal trimmers, if tweaking that sort of thing is something you wouldn't mind doing.

    Here's the thing: if what you want is that thing only the CR delivers, you need the CR. It gets the sounds it gets because of the way it's designed.

    While the Onyx is based on the Custom Reverb, it sounds different. So it really depends what you are into.

    I suspect that this is true of the Fuchs as well. The price paid is a slight tradeoff in ease of use.
     
  20. duffyguitarman

    duffyguitarman Member

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    If the John Mayer tone is what "got you", then the CR might be why. I don't think the Onyx has a bright switch, which is really important in the sound I get with my TR. I think John is using the bright switch.

    Good luck in your decision.




    Peace,
    duffy
     

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