What to do now.......? I love them all!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by Fretmaster, Nov 8, 2005.


  1. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    What to do!? After years of filtering through literally hundreds of pieces of gear I have finally reached the pinnacle of my tone quest. The problem is this; in the last year or so I did some serious downsizing to my collection. I had a few pieces that I loved, a few I really liked, a couple that were just TOO LOUD for practicality and a couple that didn’t do anything magical for me anymore though still great pieces in their own right. So I sold off all but my most favorite pieces. My keepers for amps came down to my Divided by 13 FTR37, SJT 10/20, Straub Cantus proto-type, CAA OD100SH and a Cornford Hurricane. Then the vicious cycle started all over again, except in the past I had always been able to let something go when I found something I liked better keeping the numbers at a reasonable level.

    The problem is that I have now added three more amps that just absolutely sound amazing. I bought them thinking I would continue the building of my personal data base of gear knowledge and move them on. Problem is these three newest pieces are at the top of the tonal food chain as well! A Fuchs ODS30SLX, Two Rock Emerald Pro and a Mako Amplification Makoplex. Each of these amps have their niche and all do what they do better than anything I’ve ever heard. So now I am finding my numbers going up once again and have nothing that I even remotely want to consider selling off. I only play out a half dozen times a year these days and don’t get near the playing time I used to have back when I had a life of my own. I guess I should be happy to be having this problem. I am more tonally content now than ever in my musical history. It’s just I feel guilty or foolish sometimes having such an incredible cache of guitars, amps, cabinets and accessories when I get to put them to good use no more than I do.

    I think it’s time to quit the constant tonal journey and start learning the intricacies of recording, mixing and so forth so I can start sharing my stuff over the internet since I rarely play out any more. I know I really enjoy listening to a lot of the clips you guys post here. I may not be able to post anything more inspiring than a lot of what’s already been posted but maybe I can contribute something a little different. Or at least I can find a new outlet for my musical energy and emotions. Any way….thanks for listening so to speak.

    Steve
     
  2. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    Steve......that's what it is all about! Have fun making some music!! :dude
     
  3. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    You're dead right my friend.....:cool:
     
  4. e-z

    e-z Member

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    I am of a similar mind lately. I have only ever gotten rid of three pieces of gear in 26 years of playing but now that playing out has gotten pretty infrequent I find that having four (soon to be five) amps and twelve guitars seems extravagant. One amp I'm going to sell for sure but I feel like I should only keep two for the most variety. The guitars are hard to part with but there are about five I don't really play any more. I think I've finally gotten to the point where I don't want that much stuff and would rather get to know a few tools really well rather than partially know many.

    ez
     
  5. Timmo

    Timmo Member

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    Well Fretmaster, I'd be willing to help you out the best I can.
    I'd take the Straub Cantus off your hands if it would REALLY help you...............;)
    Always willing to help a brother out ya know.
     
  6. cr8z4life

    cr8z4life Silver Supporting Member

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    It never ends!! Wait till you hear the divided by thirteen rsa 23!!
     
  7. wsaraceni

    wsaraceni Member

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    seems to me as if you need more amps. one can never have enough guitars and amps.
     
  8. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    The corollary is:

    At any given point in time, you are only one amp away from true happiness.
     
  9. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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    In the past I have waxed on about balance; your needs balanced against your wants and, well, your wallet.

    In the end, we all die anyway. Whether you have one amp or a hundred. Enjoy what you have, have had and will have. Make music and share it.

    Music is the thing, the gear is a diversion. Find the tools you need, enjoy the whole group of what you have and play it all like you mean it.

    Nothing else matters.
     
  10. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Member

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    If you are worried about accumulating a lot of "stuff" and spending a lot of money, home recording can be the slippery slope to the precipice.

    (And I didn't mention the time twiddling knobs instead of playing....so I shall)
     
  11. ZiggY!!

    ZiggY!! Member

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    indeed... It is easy to focus on the gear, instead of the techniques and knowledge when recording...

    Its no different to guitar really. If you suck at it, you are going to suck no matter what gear you are using... If you have mastered it, you will make even the most mundane setup sound like god.

    I spoke to Michael Wagener about his latest King's X recordings and he said he used a $7 microphone for the lead vocal tracks on one of the songs... Just goes to show you that gear will never make a great record. Great recording gear will only make a sucky recording suck with more clarity... ;)

    If you think buying guitars and amps is an expensive habit, wait til you see whats considered "high end" in pro audio :eek:
     
  12. Stewart

    Stewart Member

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    I think most of the amps you spend money on and constantly talk about are expensive, and far too refined sounding. Beyond the merits of a good Marshall and a Fender, I think the vast majority of these "boutique" amps never make it to what I consider a great, raw, rock n' roll sound. Refined guitar sounds are terribly boring............ALWAYS. I've never heard a boutique amp that will exhibit the "soul" of a great Marshall or Fender and boy have I tried to make this a reality. It would be nice to have a nice new package that really makes has that type of magic to it, but it's not there and many builders today, while well intended, might not have a good ear or perhaps simply don't have access to the same materials that the makers in the 60's did. This is quite possible because often, it seems like with much of this new stuff, people are simply trying to make their way back to the sounds of yesterday. . But in my book, every boutique amp that came through here lost to my old stuff and was sold off. No boutique amp kept up with my old Plexi heads for overdrive. I finally decided, just put up with the headaches associated with vintage amps and get the sound. You're spending a lot of money on all this stuff and I'm not really sure what you are getting from that unless compulsive shopping is the intended purpose!:D If you want to play rock n' roll, just buy a Marshall and be done with it!
     
  13. Distortion

    Distortion Member

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    I was under the understanding this was the Gear Lust forum... :confused:
     
  14. Timmo

    Timmo Member

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    With VERY FEW EXCEPTIONS I'd have to agree with you 100% on this.
    I never would have thought it if I hadn't experienced it all myself.
    Some boutique stuff is 'as good as' but I've yet to find "better than" and believe me, I've been through my share of boutique amp gear.
    The old stuff is a pain in the ass though.......... :Spank
     
  15. v-verb

    v-verb Member

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    Tell us more about the Makoplex!:p
     
  16. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    I've been playing for well over 30 yrs and have owned more original Fenders and Marshall as well as many other vintage pieces than I would care to count. If I was only interested in one tone or one type of music and never moving forward to express my own ideas or make an attempt to improve upon my old favorites maybe I could share your opinion. But you see, I'm not happy with simply being another copy or clone. I prefer to do my own thing and define my own sound and style. For you it ends at old Marshalls and that's great. I still own three original Marshalls myself. Two late 60's SLP's and a 1972 50 watt head that I am the original owner of. Do I think they sound great? Yes. Do I think they compete with my Two Rock, Mako, Divided by 13, etc, etc,....hell no. These amps do the things I spent years trying unsuccessfully to cokes from my vintage pieces. The bottom line is, and it's been said a thousand times, it's all about what works for you. And for me no one piece can cover the plethora of different tones and styles I enjoy playing. I dig plexis, AC30s, Hiwatts and on and on. And for me having access to new, extremely well built and in most cases "improved" versions of the classics is way more satisfying than fighting to cokes something new and in my opinion far better out of my old relics. I still love the originals but I think it would be an extremely boring world if no one had ever moved forward from Marshalls or Fenders. I say thank God for all the killer boutique builders out there. It's these guys who are keeping us tonally obsesses, hairsplitters very excited and moving forward.

    Just my .02
     
  17. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    I can't even find the words at this point to describe what this amp is doing for me. I have been looking for the ultimate plexi style amp for many many years and had finally settled on the Mojave Peacemaker as the supreme king of plexidome for the last three years. While I still maintain that the Peacemaker is at the top of the tonal food chain the Makoplex has clearly taken over the throne. The overdrives are so rich and alive and the cleans are killer. It has simply taken what I had thought of as the ultimate plexi tone to a new level. All I can really say at this point is... this amp is awesome!!!
     
  18. v-verb

    v-verb Member

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    Stewart,

    Forgive me if I'm mistaken, but don't you have (or had) a Komet 60?
     
  19. bitsandvolts

    bitsandvolts Member

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    I don't know if I agree completely. You're really saying a few different things.

    First, can boutique amps get a great raw rock and roll sound? I'll be one of the first to say yes, resoundingly. However, we're talking about something so subjective, that it's hardly worth mentioning. I've heard Zs, TopHats, Matchless amps give GREAT raw rock and roll sounds. Do I also think that there are some great raw rock and roll sounds out of marshalls and fenders? You betcha. But regardless, there's probably plenty of guys that feel differently than you.

    Second, Refined guitar sounds are not at all boring. (again, at least from my perspective :) ) In fact, I find them far more interesting than the usual fender/marshall offerings....especially later model fenders and marshalls. But again, we're talking about something that is highly subjective...

    Third...if you want a matchless, Z, Tophat or (insert your favorite boutique amp) to sound like a Marshall or a Fender, you're barking up the wrong tree...

    And I'm not trying to sound argumentative here....I'm just saying, if you want marshall tone or fender tone....go with what gets that tone...marshall or fender. If you don't like boutiques....dont go with em.

    Regardless, the whole refined vs marshall thing is almost laughable...because if you look at a schematic for most boutique stuff (which are mostly Vox or Marshall derivatives) there's not much separation between the marshall and the boutiques....heck, some boutiques, like the 18watt (which are sold by a whole slew of boutique makers) is more Marshall than anything Marshall has made since the 1990s.

    Maybe you prefer the sound of a fixed-bias/SS rectifier amp for your marshall-tone....like a Marshall superlead or jcm800. The majority (although some do the plexi-clone thing) of boutique amps are cathode biased with some variety of tube recto. Those amps, based on the way they are built, call for a different kind of player. You might not be that kind of player...The feel of these amps, the tightness of the low end, the way they break up, etc. Is all fairly different to the trained ear, than the SS recto/fixed bias amps.

    Your feelings on these amps might be a manifestation of your ear getting more atuned and trained to what you prefer...

    I dunno, I'm talking out of my ass and rambling at this point.....sorry for being so long winded.

    -Frank
     
  20. Wizard of Ozz

    Wizard of Ozz Silver Supporting Member

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    Keep buying more amps and fagetaboutit. :D
     

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