What about the Mini-Z?.....

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Jumblefingers, Feb 2, 2006.

  1. Jumblefingers

    Jumblefingers Supporting Member

    Messages:
    855
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Looked around and see it mentioned a little. Some good, some not. Want to know how it sounds at home/wife NOT yelling "Turn that down!" levels...not for a gig.

    Using a standard AM Tele and also wondering...
    1) At what O'click setting will it start to saturate?
    2) How it handles pedals (Captain Coconut 2 etc)

    Other option is the Bad Cat Mini Cat but thought that sounded very "boxy".

    Any info is most appreciated....thanks!

    :angel
     
  2. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,369
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2005
    Location:
    Anthem, AZ
    The only offering from the "mini" camp that I've tried that doesn't sound "boxy" is the Lucky 7. Don't neglect to check it out when doing your comparisons.
     
  3. Jumblefingers

    Jumblefingers Supporting Member

    Messages:
    855
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    Do they make a Lucky 7 Combo? I only see the head.
    Looking for a combo.:rolleyes:

    Thanks!
     
  4. myles111

    myles111 Member

    Messages:
    2,955
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles CA

    Have you played the 7 against the Mini Z?

    If you head to TrueTone Music in Santa Monica they carry virtually all of the amps in this category.

    I would not think the Mini-Z is boxy at all and if you want to hear it in recordings listen to the last Brad Paisley "Time Well Wasted" CD where the Mini-Z is on virtually every track.
     
  5. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,369
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2005
    Location:
    Anthem, AZ
    Nope! Tried the BadCat and the MiniMat, though. Packed 'em up and sent them back the next day. I didn't say that the L7 was better than the Mini Z....just that when looking at amps in this category, don't neglect to compare the L7 to the others. In my opinion, there was no comparison between the L7 and the ones I did try, so I think it's worth a look, that's all....especially if you're fortunate enough to live somewhere where you can actually play them!
     
  6. 59Vampire

    59Vampire Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,212
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2005
    Hi guys, m new in these parts so you might not take what i have to say too seriously, but its definitely worth the read. I have had tube amps my whole life since I ws kid(stereo) and guitar. Im 39. Still have em too. But iwanted a practice amp that had righteous tone at mouse fart volumes to let the kids sleep and keep the wife off my back. I looked into champs, portly cadets, mini cats etc. Never did play the mini z. On the Les Paul Forum, they were hyping the Tech 21 Trademark 10. SOLID STATE, does marshall, boogie, fender. There is even a web site dedicated to the settings. I didnt think much of it until I saw one in a store and said what the heck let me try it out. WOW. Went home printed out the website and went back. Played withit for a while. The amp nails overdriven Fender and Marshall to a T. I dont know about boogie because that is the one I never owned. Picked up a used one and have never looked back. Newthey run between 2 and 250 and have a very usable reverb and a DI. Its essentally a Sansamp Amp. Do yourself a favor and chcek one out. For [practice it is amazing! For the website of settings drop me a PM and Ill send it to you. Im sure the owner would not mind if i posted it here but its no big deal to send a pm. Nex to my 18watt, this is one piece of gear I will NEVER sell. You owe it to yourself to check it out. Oh, and to include my standard joke about this amp, If you really need a tube, tape one to the cabinet!!
     
  7. kaseri

    kaseri Member

    Messages:
    621
    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    I have a Mini-Z & love it. The volume can get very loud for use at home. If you're looking for a "living room" amp for practice you may want to get a drive pedal along with the Mini.
     
  8. hw2nw

    hw2nw Member

    Messages:
    2,125
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2005
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    +1


    But the Lucky 7 is a LOUD mofo. and I mean very very loud. With a 1x12 cab, getting it up to saturated was frightening. Even more frightening was with a 4x12!!!

    Take a look at the Matamp Minimat. Haven't heard too many negatives, it's a nice small amp head.
     
  9. hk_usp9f

    hk_usp9f Member

    Messages:
    1
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2006
    Jumblefingers,

    I have one and I bought it for the purpose you described: to play and not have people at home complain.

    However, at 5 watts it is still very loud. Depending on the guitar it begins to saturate between around 9 and 11 o'clock (humbucker pickups). At that point it is loud enough to annoy the household.

    To my ears it starts sounding good at around 10 o' clock. As I said earlier it is very loud so to get distorted sound at speaking voice levels or late night practice I've had to use an attenuator (a Weber mini-mass). When I'm by myself I turn the attenuator off and I am in tone heaven.

    It is not at all boxy sounding. In fact it sounds deceptively large. Sorry I really can't describe the tone better, it is something I always have difficulty putting words to.

    If you haven't found it yet Dr. Z has a forum and there is a section dedicated to the Mini Z. Feel free to post there as well.

    http://drzamplifiers.proboards41.com/index.cgi?board=mini

    And there are several sound clips on Dr. Z's product web site.

    I don't use pedals much with it as they seemed unnecessary to me - I get great classic rock tone plugged straight in. I only use a digital delay to get a light reverb-like effect to give it a more 3-dimensional sound.

    I hope this helps.
     
  10. kaseri

    kaseri Member

    Messages:
    621
    Joined:
    May 23, 2005
    At one time I had both the Mini-Z & a Lucky7. I just couldn't get into the tone of the Lucky7 at all. I found it to have too much low end response for my taste. No matter what I did I was unable to tame the lows on the Lucky7.
     
  11. RGB

    RGB Supporting Member

    Messages:
    5,369
    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2005
    Location:
    Anthem, AZ
    You have a point there! Pedals would be in order for bedroom volumes.... I really wanted to like the MiniMat, but the tone stack just didn't have much latitude and it really sounded small. Same thing with the Little Lanalei from songworks. I guess if you didn't need gig-ability, the Tech 21 suggestion would make sense to me. I have a Sansamp that I carry around as an emergency rig and use when learning parts off the computer and it really does the crunch thing very well.
     
  12. myles111

    myles111 Member

    Messages:
    2,955
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles CA
    I understand.

    The L7 is a great amp and different than the Z. The Z is more agressive and has less headroom. Different amps. If you get a chance to play one sometime try it out.
     
  13. whitehall

    whitehall Member

    Messages:
    5,223
    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2004
    Location:
    Annapolis
    I played one in the loud room of a music store for awhile. I was amazed at how bad it was at low volume. Quite the ripoff little POS. If you have to have that name then so be it, however I thought the little Palomino made a mockery out of the Z . So did the little EPI that was like 120.00
     
  14. Jumblefingers

    Jumblefingers Supporting Member

    Messages:
    855
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2004
    I have had the Tech 21 trademark 10....a very nice amp but I found myself futzing with it too much. Thus I thought with the Mini Z and my Blackstone Mosfet OD I'd get 3 tones and some tube warmth and when nobody is around I could crank it a little and pretend to be a rocker.

    Seems like there is a divide between those that love/hate the Mini Z. I also just noticed the Victoria Amp 518 Champ amp; any opinions as it seems in the same territory and price. Looked at the Swart as well but no sure about having everything on the backside. Not sure I want to look at the guts all day.

    All info is very much appreciated!
     
  15. telelion

    telelion Member

    Messages:
    2,567
    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2002
    Myles: Compared to Brad's tones on his other CD's(with exception)and especially all the live appearances I have seen of him(DVD, Conan, Letterman, Cash tribute, CMT special) I hope he retires the Mini. I hope in the future he strives for his live sound in the studio and that EJ like perfection he displayed in his response on the Dr Z forum about his sound is what I look forward to. All of the sounds on "Time Well Wasted" are good but not even close to the phenomenal sounds he is capable of producing. The big robust chimy sound that is his hallmark to me was absent all to often with a smaller and gainier sound. Not that I mind him full bore in the right situation. The Mini Z is not his sound IMO.
     
  16. myles111

    myles111 Member

    Messages:
    2,955
    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles CA

    The Mini Z was generally used as a reflected tone on many parts but not his direct tone I believe .... not sure though.
     

Share This Page