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paul, the

Valve amps vs Solid State

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The Basson is getting some outings too.....I tend to use it for Ceilidh stuff and leave the 8x10 in the band van !!

It's a great wee cab and I'm really glad to have it. It doesn't half get some funny looks when people hear it, it wouldn't be the first time somebody said " I though you said that was a two by ten". I just grin and say " It is".
I'd love to try it WITH the big Ashdown cab as they do sound very different....................just haven't played a stage big enough to justify that yet. :)

S

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Ahhh the age old debate... valve vs. SS!

Personally, I much prefer a valve amp for the band I'm in at the moment. Lotsa distortion and general "hard rocking" means that a valve amp is the only way! However, I'm sure that there are many situations where a solid state amp would be the better option - certainly in terms of sheer practicality (i.e. weight!)

On the large band / festival side of things... I think you'll find that most big acts will be using their own equipment (at least some of it...). Certainly the old-skool "wall of amps" are mostly dummy cabs, and for acts that aren't fussy/important/rich enough to bother they would use a 'house' rig, but for 90% of acts they will use their touring rig. I can't really see Tim C turning up to play a gig with an amp he's never seen before!

On the SVT2 front, I think you'd need to find a nice one that's around 15 years old or more to get a good example - I tried a number of amps before buying my Marshall, and the new SVT2s weren't that good. However, having since had a play with one from the 70's I can say that it was a distinct improvement........ mwah!

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This is my first post here, so bear with me.

My oldest tube amp was built in 1947. She still runs great and sounds fantastic.
For studio work I use a tried and true Ampeg B-15, and for live gigs I still lug around my V4-b that I bought new in 1973.
Aside from retubing and new filter caps (just to be on the safe side after 30 years), they have never needed any work.
On the down side the head alone weighs more than most solid-state stacks. Also retubing the V4-b costs more than a new Korean bass.

So tube amps are reliable if they are taken care of (valves to those of you in the UK).

For me it’s the tone I get and the more organic feel when using effects.
I’ve tried out a few solid-state amps. With a couple of exceptions I didn’t care the tone, but that’s personal preference.
In truth unless your sound really sucks 90 % of the audience doesn’t know or care what your using.

MM

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Welcome METAL-MARIACHI!!!!!!!
Agree with U re the valve amps-we call 'em valve amps here in Aus. too!!! Have to say toob for the US forums tho!
Agree tho- I've used valves AL my playing life-since 1975-& to cut a LOOOONG story... a few yrs ago I was given a fairly modern S.S. amp- liked it, tried a few 'big name' S.S. amps-bought a AMPEG B2R, started 'hankerin' for 'tubes', traded it for a SVT3PRO(hybrid-tube pre/s.s. power amps),( I DID try lots of other "name brand" amps) started realizing valves were where it's at-4 me anyways- traded it on a Fender 300PRO-ALL VALVE & now traded all my older not so good gear-some valve some S.S. for a AMPEG V4BH-100w all valve! So at least now I can honestly say 'Ive tried S.S. AND hybrid amps & I like valve amps best! B4 I used to just say I like valve amps best! The singers in our band-B4 my solid state sojourn(?????) never had cause to ask me to turn down. When I had S.S. AND hybrid amps-they were often saying 'turn down'. Now I've got all valve again-they don't say 'turn down'!!!!(all this time the Audience says the bass was OK) Conclusion- valve amps seem to "carry" the bass better, seems I can be louder(according to audience & me) without seeming to be louder !!!! My case anyway!

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Before I start, let me just say that I have very limited experince in the Amp GAS stakes, however....... I now have a Mesa Walkbout scout which is 12AX7s preamp, driving MOSFETs power amp stage..... Best of both worlds? I would say so.... Both my ***tarist and I have been blown away by the diversity of tone available, and the available volume is well ....... OVERWHELMINGLY LOUD for such a portable set up.

I'm fortunate my dad (bless him in his late 70's), is a child of the valve age (USAF comms officer in the 50's) and has a secret stash of AX7s in his workshop..... Better still the knowledge of how they work/ best application/ how to test them...... A knowledge that is stil out there (OB you da man) but is fading away......

My @@*tarist swears by valve amps and his original Musicman is a beast to behold, and yes they are a bit "old hat" and maybe high maintainance, but then arent we all striving to find 30-40year old Fenders/Ricks beacuse they have that certain MOJO?

Is any of this "new old" stuff better than the latest cutting edge stuff? ie is my Fender better than my PRS? my Roland amp better than my Mesa?

The answer is of course NO, its just [u]different[/u] and in a world of art (albeit musical art) who is anyone to judge what is BETTER. Try it if you like it, stick with it if you don't, go back to solid state, I'm sure there will be someone who still wants a vavle amp ......

Edited by The Burpster

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I love my Aguilar DB680 preamp. It has ten valve stages. I've had it a year and haven't had to change any valves yet. A time will come when a valve blows onstage just as a time will come when a 9V dies in my bass onstage. That's what back-ups are for.

I always run out of the Aguilar's DI into the PA, so I always get its thick, clean valve tone. When I want valve filth, I step on my DHA distortion pedal - complete with two valves.

For bass, there are plenty of good and different sounds out there that suit different people well. For guitar though, valves are a must. I've just managed to convince my guitar player of this. Hoorah! 70s Matamp on its way!

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Should be A LOOOOOOONG time B4 u need to replace ANY valves inthe preamp.... Heck under normal use- say 1 rehearsal & 2 gigs/week my quality tubes last at least 5-10 yrs-thats power amp valves- pre's I've never changed. I'm pretty sure my ol '70's amp still has the same pre amp valves & still sounds superb!

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That's good to know 'cos I'm seriously lazy.

The 70s Matamp head we picked up yesterday still had 4 Mullards in the power section from years back. So I don't think valves are as fragile as people seem to suggest. As someone said earlier, they got us through WWII!

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My Pa reckons that whilst Mullard where in production they were the best available...... (he did order 500 000 of them for the USAF, in preferance to US made ones) so hang on to 'em as long as you can as they are absolute dooosies!

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hey all! what a great thread!

its another tough one, but ped will know where I'm comming from, figuratively speaking that is! I am totally addicted to my trace elliot V4 mk1 220 watt all vlave head it is monsterous and will drive anything - even the next door neighbours 6 litre roller! I have been using it with two peavey 1x15 300w cabs and it is unbelievable...mental infact, however recently I bought an asdown mag 8x10 cab for other purposes but when I paired them up it went way past mental...agressive, in yer face, no prisoners; bursting with more power and tone than I ever could imagine, dowmside is the size of the 8x10 and the weight of the trace head - loads of lifting require, 3 men with the 8x10!

for my 40th my partner bought me an ampeg svt 3 pro and 410hlf, this is great for gigging because of its compact size and weight - however it surprised me big time with its performance at recent gigs..it was initially difficult to get the tone right for me but I enjoy fighting to get the right sound...3 x 12ax7 in the pre section, driver section 1 x 12ax7 and 1 x12au7 and solid state power section make it sound incredible when pushing the master volume and drive control flat out and pre gain at 3. It is just too damn loud for more of the smaller gigs I play and have been on occasion asked to turn down...

so it is quite a tough call - both of my amps and all combinations of setups give me everthing I need, so for me for ease of use when gigging - and not pestering the rest of the guys for help in lifting - the ampeg edges at the moment, however huge gigs get the full kit, I run my Yamaha attitude in stereo by independently connecting the p style pups to the ampeg driving the 8x10 and the model one (neck pup) connected to the trace driving the 2 x peavey 1x15 cabs and that my friends is off the planet in terms of power, tone and heavy bloody lifting!

Edited by andy67

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Good on U ANDY 67. I couldn't get the 3PRO to get a GREAT sound. Just me I s'pose-I mean its a LOVELY amp & IS plenty powerful-when run properly- but I just seem to like the tube power section as well as pre amp.
Glad U CAN get a GREAT sound for yrself.

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cheers Rod

it was hard work getting the sound but in the end I got their thanks to the supplied manual! I never would have dreamed pushing the mdrive section and master volume flat out - but there you are manuals are worth a look...occasionally, when all else fails.

initially I demo'ed the mag 8x10 with the svt 3pro and did not like the head as it sounded 'dead'? I then purchased a swr 750x that was excellent but riddled with problems and ended up swapping it for the svt 3pro (soundcontrol) and have since bought the b410hlf and they do work very well together.

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Glad U like it- seriously- U cant really go wrong with an Ampeg tube(hybrid anyway) amp & Ampegt Speaker cab! All my bands were seriously impressed with My 3PRO & SVT410HLF rig. I just needed an All Valve amp & this seemed to work better with a sealed cab- & a Berg NV610 just came at the right time & price! Lucky me- I LOVE it!

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[quote name='The Burpster' post='13582' date='Jun 7 2007, 10:18 PM']My Pa reckons that whilst Mullard where in production they were the best available...... (he did order 500 000 of them for the USAF, in preferance to US made ones) so hang on to 'em as long as you can as they are absolute dooosies![/quote]


OK I have to buy into this. great topic! :)

I run an Ampeg SVP-PRO preamp into a large Mosfet power amp (and bi amp... a whole other topic). I have heard/read a lot of horror stories similar to Lfalex's and just as many if not more love storys about this preamp. Mine is quiet and sound as perfect as the pre stage of an SVT can. I Used TC Electronic preamps for a long time and they are quiet, clean and give you a flawless sound but they just aint tubey enough.

On the subject of tubes I have tested a lot and I mean a lot. The Mullards IMHO are a fantastic rich soupy sounding tube which is prefect for a Marshal stack with a Les Paul or Strat. Again IMHO they are not a good bass tube. The main reason is trhat they get too muddy in the low mids to use with a bass.

I know they have this elite reputation and Im sure its from all the gu1t4rists that have had such fantastic sounds from them but I have tried at least 6 different Mullards in different parts of my SVP-PRO and at low volume its quite nice. Turn it up or use them live and they drop to near the bottom of my list.

Just my own experience, buy em and try em, I would love to hear other peoples opinions.

as far as SS vs Tube...... I cand imagine ever going back to SS.

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as far as SS vs tube- I cant Imagine EVER goin back either!- even tho I do sometimes with my LMII- when I'm LAZY- good li'l amp too-but NO tube babe!

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My v4 has 4 x kt-88 and I think, 6 x 12ax7 I love the sound of the kt-88 it is so ballsy and full of that valvey goodness, ahemm!

the reason for buyin the svt 3pro was to enable me to use my yamaha attitude in stereo mode.

the woofer pup (dimarzio model 1) connects to the valve amp and the 2 x 1x15 cabs for massive bottom end and the model p pups get connected to the svt 3pro and my ashdown 8x10 for speed in delivery of the middle & top end - and it works very well...presence is out of this world!

I practice in a place called Inch House community centre based in Edinburgh, it is a 500 year old stately home with the metre thick walls. We practice two flights up and you can hear the bass right at the basement level! its presence and projection is so there only issue is it can cause poor relations with other bands...boo, boo, booooo.......

funnily enough all my gear seems to work very well at the moment in all its different set-ups!

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ANDY67- GREAT 2 hear- MAN that sounds like an AWESOME set up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I agree with U re the KT88's -my Fender 300pro has 6 x 6550's -not quite KT88's.... but in the not too distant future I'll be ordering a sextet of JJ KT88's for her from EUROTUBES.COM- best prices for GREAT valves I've found. ( I bought a sextet of JJ KT77's for an amp I've now sold, but man they were/are nice tubes & were $100(I s'pose about 42 Brit.lbs) cheaper than if I bought the same thing in Australia-GREAT government & its even GREATER TAXES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
U MUST get an amazing sound with yr bass bi-amped(right word???) like U say. I Think I get an amazing sound simply with my V4BH into my Berg NV610... Last nite was an AWESOME gig at a club where we play pretty regularly-full FOH support- but onstage sound was GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!-Out front was reportedly great too! So the V4BH's lineout must sound OK!!!!! :-) Now I just gotta FIND an excuse to use the Fender 300 Pro sometimes instead of simply the Ampeg!!! LOVELY choice to have But.......- the 2 channels & overdrive on the 300PRO...yes... next gig!!!

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I've been doing some homework on available modern valve gear. The reoccurring manufacturers are: Hartke, EBS, Ashdown, Eden, and some TE and Peavey - which all seem to emulate or have 'valve sound'. A brand that keeps popping up that I wasn't expecting is SWR - often fitted with valve pramps. I know valves are beneficial in different ways but I didn't think SWR were associated with warm tubey loveliness. Is is my misconception that SWR gear is clean, clinical or angry?


Oh, this one looks like a nice little, reasonably priced setup:

[url="http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Peavey-T-Max-500watt-Valve-Bass-Stack-SWR-low-Reserve_W0QQitemZ150131443082QQihZ005QQcategoryZ58719QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem"]http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Peavey-T-Max-500watt...1QQcmdZViewItem[/url]

Only a pre-amp though.

---

Does anyone have any thoughts on WEM gear? I've seen the dominator head - it's only 20 watts so it could be quite nice at home.

Edited by paul, the

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Hey rod

it is an awesome rig rod, I'm forty now and going through my midlife chrisis, so I decided to reinforce my bass gear and get something big! probably to force myself into lifting it so ican prove to myself that I'm still able.... I dont know if it is biamped - I just presumed it was running in stereo, still some may see that as biamped, maybe is! I'll get photos next time I'm in the practice room... I totally love the idea of owning a v4b - just cant get one here in the uk! they are awsome and not a bad review to be found! 100watts of pure valvey goodness for bass! good luck with next gig let me know how the 300 pro performed. do you have any photos of the 300 pro?

the kt-88 and 6550 are odd and have sparked many adebate on which is better. never found a clear answer...I believe it is horses for courses - some like some dont!
but that would make a good thread so please will you start that one!

hey paul

used to have an swr 750x with the preamp valve.. what an amp, articulation of sound was supreme but unfortunately forme it was problematic from the moment I got it! so it went back and I got the ampeg svt 3pro and I love that soooo much it has 3 preamp vales, 2 drive valves and solid state power section...

everything I have experienced and discussed with others relating to the dominator is - incredibly awesome! fantastic valve heads/amps that are far louder than their 20 watt rating....

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[quote name='andy67' post='18781' date='Jun 16 2007, 01:16 PM']hey paul

used to have an swr 750x with the preamp valve.. what an amp, articulation of sound was supreme but unfortunately forme it was problematic from the moment I got it! so it went back and I got the ampeg svt 3pro and I love that soooo much it has 3 preamp vales, 2 drive valves and solid state power section...

everything I have experienced and discussed with others relating to the dominator is - incredibly awesome! fantastic valve heads/amps that are far louder than their 20 watt rating....[/quote]


That's really helpful, thank you!

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[quote name='presoulnation' post='8643' date='May 30 2007, 12:31 AM']In response to the SVT thing - I would add that my favourite recorded bass tone was done through an SVT 4, my fave amp I have ever played live was an SVT 3 and by far the most disappointing amp I have ever played was an SVT 2, which is supposed to be one of their monsters......go figure![/quote]


The SVT3 is pretty much the SVT 2 (SVP-PRO) preamp and a Mosfet poweramp if I'm not mistaken. I use an SVP-PRO into a 500w a side Mosfet power amp and It really does sound the same as the SVT3's that I've used. The only difference is that I bi-amp it.

And I gotta agree with you Presoul, its the best sounding live amp I've ever used/had, which is why I still have and use it after all these years.

Edited by Freuds_Cat

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[quote name='paul, the' post='19433' date='Jun 18 2007, 04:45 AM']How long do you guys leave the valves to warm up, if at all?[/quote]

How ever long's conveniant. Usually- I set up the bass rig & turn amp on to standby, then after doing other things-finalising set list, tuning, get a drink etc.. I turn ON. Sometimes it's just set up turn on standby, a cuppla mins then turn on for a soundcheck. But 4 me-never less than a cuppla mins.

ANDY67- there's a pic of my Fender 300PRO on top of my Bergantino NV610 in the show yr rigs thread. & (hopefully) here is the same pic-all I have 4 now.

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[quote name='rodl2005' post='19438' date='Jun 18 2007, 03:50 PM']Usually- I set up the bass rig & turn amp on to standby, then after doing other things-finalising set list, tuning, get a drink etc.. I turn ON. Sometimes it's just set up turn on standby, a cuppla mins then turn on for a soundcheck. But 4 me-never less than a cuppla mins.[/quote]

+1

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