Which Carr Amp Mercury or Rambler.. ?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by darkstar11, Feb 11, 2008.


  1. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    Hello... I am new here and I am buying a new amp and need advice.

    I just sold my Mesa Boogie 50 caliber+. Which I had for like 15 years (wow has it been that long) and it served me well. I played and gigged back when/then .. but had taken some time off from playing (family reasons).. But recently got back into playin' my music. But I won't be gigging anytime soon.

    I have become an avid player and own several PRS and Fender guitars.. I play mostly in my home studio and in my "living room".

    I tend to enjoy playing on the clean side... My influences are the likes of .. Clapton, Jerry Garcia, Dickie Betts, Warren Haynes, Santana.

    Ok.. this brings me to which amp to buy. Now bear in mind I am just a few miles from Carr Amps here in Raleigh NC. So for some reason I feel drawn to them .. Mainly for their excellent reputation and I like to keep my money local. (I bought my Mesa when I lived in Northern Cal )

    Sooo.. Does anyone have any advice.. The Carr Mercury is nice .. small and is supposed to be a great studio or bedroom amp. Or do I get the Rambler.. Much more power.. more Head room and supposedly a great home amp as well (but can take me to gigs if I ever decide to get back into it.)

    Sorry for the long rant..

    I am also interested in other advice and brands... I have around +- $2000 to spend.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    I like the clean sound of the Rambler a lot better than the Mercury. Great reverb and a lush tremolo, too.

    Bryan
     
  3. justonwo

    justonwo Member

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    The Mercury is a cool idea if you're only going to play at home, but I'd probably opt for one of the bigger amps for gigging.
     
  4. joek86

    joek86 Supporting Member

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    I have owned both..........For clean and semi dirty I would go with the Rambler. Add an Xotic RC Booster and you are good to go!

    Joe
     
  5. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    Thanks... I am tending to agree that Rambler is the better choice.

    Actually, I hope to be able to answer my own question. Since I just spoke with factory and they invited me down !
     
  6. Bluewail

    Bluewail Silver Supporting Member

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    Given a choice between a Rambler & a Mercury, my vote is the Rambler. However looking at the kind of music/players you like, you might want to give the Hammerhead a try.
     
  7. schaljo

    schaljo LEGEND

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    The hammerhead with an OCD in front does a very good Warren Haynes. I miss my HH:(
     
  8. jmadill

    jmadill Gold Supporting Member

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    I own a Mercury and a Vincent, and the other guitar player in my band has a Rambler and a Slant6v.

    The Merc is pretty dirty, even on the clean settings. The Rambler is really clean, use a pedal for dirt. The Vincent can be clean, but can dirty up pretty nicely with the built in boost or a pedal.

    If you like clean, go for the Rambler or the Vincent. If you'd like a lower wattage setting, go with the Vincent as it is selectable between 7 and 33 watts.

    I like my Mercury, but clean it's not.

    Use this information as a guideline, but play them for yourself.

    -jm
     
  9. Londoncalling

    Londoncalling Member

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    I'll agree with others. I really like the Ramblers clean tone the best. Having said that, I bought the Mercury because I like its semi clean (or semi dirty) tone alot.

    In addition the Mercury sounds great at low volume. I use it at home and small jams.

    See if you can get a factory tour and play them both!
     
  10. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    hmmmm.. The Vincent.

    Now that you mention it.. That seems like a contender too!!
     
  11. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    Great replies all!

    Ok.. Here is a clip of what I am after.
    Fast forward to 3:50 minutes..
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=PKtrz_fvmoc
     
  12. Flyin' Brian

    Flyin' Brian Member

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    I had a Mercury and I found it plenty loud enough for trio gigs with an acoustic piano. It always stayed clean and I never used it above the 5 watt setting. I've also used it mic'd for louder gigs but it wouldn't cut them on it's own and stay clean. If it's cleans you want go with the Rambler and a good boost pedal to give you some dirt. That factory tour will help you the best.
     
  13. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

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    Oh. The Rambler won't do that without a pedal.

    Bryan
     
  14. darkstar11

    darkstar11 Member

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    hehe... I figured that..

    Not sure If I could do it either.. even with the right rig ;)
     
  15. DejavuDave

    DejavuDave Member

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    The Rambler is a great amp. The cleans are buttery, simply gorgeous, and pedals sound great through the Rambler. The Slant has excellent cleans, too, but may be more power than you're looking for. Steve makes some great amps.
     
  16. Jay Strange

    Jay Strange Member

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    I agree that the Mercury tends to brake up early but ay home volumes its great. I had one and miss it at times. It does have a compressed overdrive voicing with a lot of bass. Try before you buy for sure. One thing to consider also is that it seems Mercs hold their resale value better than Ramblers. I also have a Vincent and while the clean is outstanding at low to mid volumes, it needs volume for a good dirt sound. What I do is crank the amp full and use my volume pots for cleans. By far the best clean up of any amp I've owned. I call the Vinnie my "Cremepuff":D
     
  17. teleman1

    teleman1 Member

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    Come on Merc experinced players! What tube is/was your power tube? I have heard it with an El84 and can tell you there is more headroom with a KT-66 than the EL 84's. Most of the newer ones come with an EL-84. BUt thats one of the features of the amp;to change the sound with a tube change. So, which tubes did you have?
     
  18. esoteric pete

    esoteric pete Supporting Member

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    i have a rambler and a mercury. my advice: get both.

    aside from that, get the rambler if you want clean. the 14w mode is great too. i LOVE my mercury. if you play it in full 8 watt mode, with the volume halfway, its pretty clean also, but not as loud as the rambler, obviously.

    click the link in my sig, and listen to the tunes on our myspace. i used my rambler for all that stuff and the tone out of these amps is lucious, IMO.
     
  19. joek86

    joek86 Supporting Member

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    They use EL34 not 84's.......... but anyway , when I had my Merc I tried both. I ended up liking the 34 better. I went through a whole tube/ speaker thing with that amp. It was the type of thing that drives you nuts. It was good, but something was missing that would have made it great. It definitely benefited from a Mullard Cv4004 in V1 and a Hellatone G12H30 speaker replacement.

    Joe
     
  20. Tonefish

    Tonefish Member

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    For living room play and tube drive at low power, the Merc is the ticket. Plenty of cleans available at living room levels too, especially with a strat.

    I doubt I would ever sell my Mercury because it is so perfect for low volume versatility, with great tone.
     

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