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  1. #41
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by renderit View Post
    That neat woody one with the glass panel was most awesome! I wanted one bad! What was that again?
    My favourite amp of the last decade..easily...

    Emery Sound MicroBaby...10" alnico speaker, vintage valves...Brimar 12ax7, Mullard KT61, and Brimar 6x5g rectifier ( although pictured with an RCA..)




    An arm and a bloody leg new, and for those of us old enough to remember paying for amps by the watt..a little confusing price wise. If you find one, grab it, you can thank me later

    http://www.emerysound.com/
    Shakespeare walks into a pub, the Landlord says "get out, you're Bard"

  2. #42
    Les Paul Forum Member Triplet's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    I have a well broken in AC15C1 and you would have to look to see if it was a 10 or 12 inch speaker...
    .
    'then she made me play games I didn't wanna play...'
    .
    .
    Fer fux sake! Duane's left and Dickey's right!
    .

  3. #43
    Les Paul Forum Member renderit's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by PaulD View Post
    I can only speak of my own personal experience on this but I have played many small venue gigs with a 5 watt amp fitted with a 100db Celestion Blue speaker and I regularly gig with a 12 watt tweed Deluxe style amp also fitted with a Celestion Blue and have never had a problem being loud enough, in fact I'm often being asked to turn down as I am too loud! This is playing with a blues / rock style band with a none too gentle drummer (is there any other sort of drummer! ??). There is very little noticeable difference in volume between the 5 watt amp and the 12 watt amp.

    As a guideline and assuming the same speaker configuration if you want an amp that sounds twice as loud as 5 watt amp you would need to go to a 50 watt amp, however if you have a 5 watt amp with a 90db speaker and change the speaker to a 100db it will then be twice as loud. So a 5 watt amp with an efficient speaker can easily be as loud as a 50 watt amp with an inefficient speaker! As for the difference between a 12 watt amp and a 15 or 20 watt amp if they all had the same speaker I doubt if most people would hear any difference in volume level, there would be less than 3db difference between the 12 and 20 watt amps.
    Wonderful! Send me all the specs for the currently available amps and how many db they will stomp out with what they have? Or preface any amp choice with a Celestion Blue? Nobody DOES that!

    Maybe they SHOULD? Let's see....C Blues run around $279 here. So after shipping the OP has......a speaker. The next question is how do they SOUND in every amp. I guess as an upgrade to a $350 amp he buys.

    You out-scienced us with your VERY EXCELLENT TRUTH above. Seriously. I now want to try some super efficient speakers. I have some old JBL D series which are. But I also know they are not a magic bullet in all amps. What are the more efficient ones out there so an array may be tried?

    P.S. - all of my 12 amp vs. all of my 20 amp have different speakers (I think) so your last postulate above is hard for me to prove without a ton of wrenching. However, now I will try. Thank you for all of these explanations! You have made this idiot smarter which is not easy to do!

    P.P.S. I think he should go with a Blues Junior used.


  4. #44
    Les Paul Forum Member Don's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by renderit View Post
    P.P.S. I think he should go with a Blues Junior used.
    I agree.

  5. #45
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Shakespeare walks into a pub, the Landlord says "get out, you're Bard"

  6. #46
    Les Paul Forum Member Groover's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Cornell make good quality Combo's but they aint cheap.
    JBLPplayer

    And what is the correct measurement of a widdlers peak?

  7. #47
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Groover View Post
    Cornell make good quality Combo's but they aint cheap.
    Thinking the same thing Keith, the Plexi 7 is tailor made for this geezer, but getting one across the water at the dough is impossible.

    Get the kettle on Bro.
    Shakespeare walks into a pub, the Landlord says "get out, you're Bard"

  8. #48
    Les Paul Forum Member
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by renderit View Post
    Wonderful! Send me all the specs for the currently available amps and how many db they will stomp out with what they have? Or preface any amp choice with a Celestion Blue? Nobody DOES that!

    Maybe they SHOULD? Let's see....C Blues run around $279 here. So after shipping the OP has......a speaker. The next question is how do they SOUND in every amp. I guess as an upgrade to a $350 amp he buys.

    You out-scienced us with your VERY EXCELLENT TRUTH above. Seriously. I now want to try some super efficient speakers. I have some old JBL D series which are. But I also know they are not a magic bullet in all amps. What are the more efficient ones out there so an array may be tried?

    P.S. - all of my 12 amp vs. all of my 20 amp have different speakers (I think) so your last postulate above is hard for me to prove without a ton of wrenching. However, now I will try. Thank you for all of these explanations! You have made this idiot smarter which is not easy to do!

    P.P.S. I think he should go with a Blues Junior used.
    Yes, sorry went a bit off topic and probably not being helpful to the OP. I get a bit wound up when people start saying "you need x amount of watts to be loud enough" when there is far more to it than that (rant over!). I was just using the Celestion blue as an example of an efficient speaker, there are many others at a much lower price, a lot of the Eminence speakers are high efficiency. For info most guitar speakers will be in the 90 - 100db range.

    There is a great resource here http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html where you can input the speaker efficiency and amp power along with a few other variables and it will calculate the sound pressure level. It's interesting to play around changing the wattage while leaving everything else the same and then compare that with the effect of leaving the wattage the same but changing the speaker efficiency. Just remember that db is a logarithmic scale so a change of less than 3db will be barely noticeable, a change of 6db will be very noticeable (typically being perceived as half as loud again) and a change of 10db will usually be perceived as being twice as loud.

  9. #49
    Les Paul Forum Member MapleFlame's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Xpensive Wino View Post
    Are you selling one for $350, delivery included?
    I seemed to have not read the $350.00, agreed I would loved mine for that price lol
    Top carves are sexy

  10. #50
    Les Paul Forum Member Xpensive Wino's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by MapleFlame View Post
    I seemed to have not read the $350.00, agreed I would loved mine for that price lol
    Damn. I had my hopes up.

  11. #51
    Les Paul Forum Member Xpensive Wino's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by ourmaninthenorth View Post
    My favourite amp of the last decade..easily...

    Emery Sound MicroBaby...10" alnico speaker, vintage valves...Brimar 12ax7, Mullard KT61, and Brimar 6x5g rectifier ( although pictured with an RCA..)

    An arm and a bloody leg new, and for those of us old enough to remember paying for amps by the watt..a little confusing price wise. If you find one, grab it, you can thank me later

    http://www.emerysound.com/
    I once had a emery board. I can only describe it as "gritty".

  12. #52
    Les Paul Forum Member ourmaninthenorth's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Xpensive Wino View Post
    I once had a emery board. I can only describe it as "gritty".
    Nailed it....

    I know, I know, I've already got it on......
    Shakespeare walks into a pub, the Landlord says "get out, you're Bard"

  13. #53
    Les Paul Forum Member Pellman73's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by ourmaninthenorth View Post
    My favourite amp of the last decade..easily...

    Emery Sound MicroBaby...10" alnico speaker, vintage valves...Brimar 12ax7, Mullard KT61, and Brimar 6x5g rectifier ( although pictured with an RCA..)




    An arm and a bloody leg new, and for those of us old enough to remember paying for amps by the watt..a little confusing price wise. If you find one, grab it, you can thank me later

    http://www.emerysound.com/
    dang that thing looks awesome

    office amp!

  14. #54

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    I think I'm getting off track here in what I really need. The original purpose for this amp was mainly as a home practice amp so that I can crank it up without having the wife down my back complaining that its too loud.

    If it can also be used for small clubs/bars that would be great. But if not, I can always put it through the PA if needed.

    I was originally thinking of the VOX AC4C1-12 with EL84 Power Tube, but not sure that I can get the sound I'm looking for out of that amp.

    So here's what I think that I really need and what I believe would give me the sound I'm looking for:

    A Low Watt Tube Amp running EL34 Power Tube that will give me the crunch of a JCM 800 50 watt Combo at low volumes that I can use to practice in the house under $300 ($350 max).

    So far I'm not finding a new one to fit the bill, so I think a used amp would be best.

    A lot of the used amps are very desirable and tend to cost as much or more then the new ones!

    So any suggestions on a Marshall (or similar) small Combo amp that I could find used, that is not that popular so that it is priced in my budget, but still kick ass would be ideal.

    Any amps you guys can think of that fit the bill and are not heavily desired. Maybe something forgotten about that was never played by EC, Page, etc. so no one is big on it?

  15. #55

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Get a solid state Marshall.

  16. #56

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mdubya View Post
    Get a solid state Marshall.
    No can do...

  17. #57
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    You'll never get the answer you want. You'll have to find it yourself. The $ limit and tube as well as tube type futher limit your choices. I own over 50 amps from 2 to 100 watts and my thoughts are these.

    Used is great. From vintage champs and 60's Gibson and Epiphones to the National/Vaco amps there are killer 5-20 watt amps that could do what you want, [you decide],. Basic features, great tone and vibe but getting harder to find at that price point and will need servicing. You can find them with a little effort. Of mine, the 1962 Gibson Discoverer T I found under $300, with EL84's and 12-15 watts would do.

    There are a gazzilion newer and newer used low wattage tube amps. That budget limits choice but there are lots used. The "Lunchbox" heads are great options and offer master volume/gain and other features over vintage types. Of the many combo's the Fender Blues Jr stands out IME, and I used them on a wide variety of gigs, including club/festival tours. Used clean ones at your price are common.

    Don't discredit Solid State amps. Unless you simply just want a tube amp, I can tell you that there are many good high quality ones available that you couldn't tell were not tube. You will need to employ SS FX to get the Marshall 800 tone anyway and no little EL84 amp will give up EL34 tone.

    A bonus with well designed SS amps is you can use higher power amps as they keep dynamic full tone when turned way down to happy wife levels, as you need not push output tubes to "get the tone". You can gig at volume and they are virtually maintenance free.

    Just an old mans thoughts.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  18. #58
    Les Paul Forum Member jbzoso2002's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Check out the Boss Katana 100watt 1x12, has a .5 watt setting
    and sounds and feels way better than its price point.

    Has effects too.

    Jimmy

  19. #59

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    You'll never get the answer you want. You'll have to find it yourself. The $ limit and tube as well as tube type futher limit your choices. I own over 50 amps from 2 to 100 watts and my thoughts are these.

    Used is great. From vintage champs and 60's Gibson and Epiphones to the National/Vaco amps there are killer 5-20 watt amps that could do what you want, [you decide],. Basic features, great tone and vibe but getting harder to find at that price point and will need servicing. You can find them with a little effort. Of mine, the 1962 Gibson Discoverer T I found under $300, with EL84's and 12-15 watts would do.

    There are a gazzilion newer and newer used low wattage tube amps. That budget limits choice but there are lots used. The "Lunchbox" heads are great options and offer master volume/gain and other features over vintage types. Of the many combo's the Fender Blues Jr stands out IME, and I used them on a wide variety of gigs, including club/festival tours. Used clean ones at your price are common.

    Don't discredit Solid State amps. Unless you simply just want a tube amp, I can tell you that there are many good high quality ones available that you couldn't tell were not tube. You will need to employ SS FX to get the Marshall 800 tone anyway and no little EL84 amp will give up EL34 tone.

    A bonus with well designed SS amps is you can use higher power amps as they keep dynamic full tone when turned way down to happy wife levels, as you need not push output tubes to "get the tone". You can gig at volume and they are virtually maintenance free.

    Just an old mans thoughts.
    Hi "old man" LOL

    I appreciate your "old" wisdom and will consider other options (if they are able to be played locally first), as just reading about stuff doesn't really mean much.

    I went to the local Sam Ash & Guitar Center near me (who barely have a good selection of amps of interest) and did get to try a few.

    Surprisingly, the marshall ds5c that I tried didn't do it for me. I don't really like that synthetic "buzzing" type distortion overdrive that it (and most of the others with a overdrive setting) seemed to have. Which is why I've been leaning towards a tube driven distortion (if left to do their own thing, can't really sound too F'd up, unless the speaker is just a mess, such as the VOX AC4C1 that I tried which sounded "small" and didn't do it for me either.

    Also surprising to me the only one that they had that I thought was able to produce a fat growl of an overdriven tube sound was the BlackStar HT-5R 1-12" and seemed to have several ways to dial in to some different usable sounds. So of the newer amps, I have one so far But still interested in some of those really nice old ones that I'm sure you probably have lying around in a closet somewhere!

  20. #60
    Les Paul Forum Member Xpensive Wino's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Hi "old man" LOL

    I appreciate your "old" wisdom and will consider other options (if they are able to be played locally first), as just reading about stuff doesn't really mean much.

    I went to the local Sam Ash & Guitar Center near me (who barely have a good selection of amps of interest) and did get to try a few.

    Surprisingly, the marshall ds5c that I tried didn't do it for me. I don't really like that synthetic "buzzing" type distortion overdrive that it (and most of the others with a overdrive setting) seemed to have. Which is why I've been leaning towards a tube driven distortion (if left to do their own thing, can't really sound too F'd up, unless the speaker is just a mess, such as the VOX AC4C1 that I tried which sounded "small" and didn't do it for me either.

    Also surprising to me the only one that they had that I thought was able to produce a fat growl of an overdriven tube sound was the BlackStar HT-5R 1-12" and seemed to have several ways to dial in to some different usable sounds. So of the newer amps, I have one so far But still interested in some of those really nice old ones that I'm sure you probably have lying around in a closet somewhere!

    Don't encourage him.


    This is a pretty good idea:

    Quote Originally Posted by jbzoso2002 View Post
    Check out the Boss Katana 100watt 1x12, has a .5 watt setting
    and sounds and feels way better than its price point.

    Has effects too.

    Jimmy
    You're getting some good advice here. They sound great, and are cheap as chips. Plus, brand-new amps are unlikely to have issues (and have a warranty if they do).

    Get over your preconceived notions about tubes vs solid-state and let your ears (and your budgetary constraints) guide you.

    I fear that at your price point, you may be in danger of getting a money pit you can ill afford, since many older tube amps require expensive work shortly after their acquisition - don't ask me how I know.

  21. #61
    Les Paul Forum Member sonar's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post

    Also surprising to me the only one that they had that I thought was able to produce a fat growl of an overdriven tube sound was the BlackStar HT-5R 1-12" and seemed to have several ways to dial in to some different usable sounds. So of the newer amps, I have one so far But still interested in some of those really nice old ones that I'm sure you probably have lying around in a closet somewhere!
    I lean toward older, vintage Fender and Marshall tones, yet I really like the Blackstar stuff for value and change of pace. I have a little HT1-R that I have a blast playing with a Les Paul. Great crunch. If I was younger and playing what I used to play I'd probably play Blackstar over Peavey, and definately over any new Marshall design.

  22. #62
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by sonar View Post
    I lean toward older, vintage Fender and Marshall tones, yet I really like the Blackstar stuff for value and change of pace. I have a little HT1-R that I have a blast playing with a Les Paul. Great crunch. If I was younger and playing what I used to play I'd probably play Blackstar over Peavey, and definately over any new Marshall design.
    The amps you try and like are best indicators where to look. We all tend to find our own way. Try to find a Tech 21 Trademark 30. Worth a listen. I find, for me, a good, full harmonicly rich clean tone is key. I want bold and cleanish tones that I can use with various "Filth or Fur or Fuzz", the three F's, to tailor my distortion tones. Old fart style.

    If your smiling and loving it after playing for an hour or so thinkin' you was only wailin' away for 15 minutes, .... well that's it, done deal. The Blackstar may be it.
    Jimmy makes a valid point about the Boss Katana. AMAZING VALUE AND UTILITY!!! Try to play one.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  23. #63
    Les Paul Forum Member Xpensive Wino's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    Jimmy makes a valid point about the Boss Katana. AMAZING VALUE AND UTILITY!!! Try to play one.
    The 50-watt 112 Katana costs less than a good dinner with wine.

  24. #64
    Les Paul Forum Member Big Al's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Xpensive Wino View Post
    The 50-watt 112 Katana costs less than a good dinner with wine.
    It is nuts how affordable they are. Usable loud stage ready gig amps AND real bedroom level practice amp. I want to try the new Pro models.
    The older I get, the better I was.

  25. #65

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    The amps you try and like are best indicators where to look. We all tend to find our own way. Try to find a Tech 21 Trademark 30. Worth a listen. I find, for me, a good, full harmonicly rich clean tone is key. I want bold and cleanish tones that I can use with various "Filth or Fur or Fuzz", the three F's, to tailor my distortion tones. Old fart style.

    If your smiling and loving it after playing for an hour or so thinkin' you was only wailin' away for 15 minutes, .... well that's it, done deal. The Blackstar may be it.
    Jimmy makes a valid point about the Boss Katana. AMAZING VALUE AND UTILITY!!! Try to play one.
    I played my Tech 21 British pedal though my powered speaker tonight, thinking about this thread and how a Tech 21 Fly Rig through a powered speaker could just about do it all: clean, Plexi, you get delay and a boost. If it sounds anywhere near as good as my British pedal, it is a sure bet. The Trademark is right there, too.

    Another vote for the Katana. It has so many possibilities.

    This setup was one of the best low volume JTM45 rigs I have ever used. It was almost embarrassing how good it sounded. The Bad Monkey was used for speaker emulation, only. Dime the fuzz, hit it with the OD 808 boost, Master Volume it with the speaker volume control. Screaming Brown tones at whisper volumes.


  26. #66
    Les Paul Forum Member RJLII's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Looking for a low watt tube amp to play Blues & Blues/Rock at small venues and in the house (so that I don't hear it from the family). Was leaning towards a VOX AC4C1-12.

    Prefer to stay around 5 Watt (unless it has a switch from 15 watt to 5 Watt feature). Also looking to pay as little as possible, but might go up to around $350 so used is a strong option.

    What do you guys think about all of these...any recommendations?

    1) Vox AC4C1-12 Classic 4W 1x12 Tube Guitar Combo Amp

    2) Blackstar HT-5R 5-Watt 1x12-Inch Guitar Combo Amp reverb

    3) Fender Blues Junior III 15-Watt 12-Inch Guitar Combo Amp

    4) Laney Amps CUB All TUBE Series CUB 12R 15-Watt 1x12 Guitar Combo Amplifier

    5) (New) Monoprice 611815 15Watt, 1 x 12 Guitar Combo Tube Amplifier with Celestion Speaker & Spring Reverb
    A couple of questions so I can frame a meaningful response:

    Will this be be your only amp? If not, what else is in the stable?

    What kind of music do you play?

    How far away can you get from the family while practicing?

    Thanks in advance for answers. Trying to help.
    Compared to most of you I suck at guitar, but I'm working real hard and sucking less every day. There, I said it.

  27. #67

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Actually never heard of Katina, so I'll look into those. If they are good for the home and out, that would definetly be a big bonus.

    Quote Originally Posted by RJLII View Post
    A couple of questions so I can frame a meaningful response:

    Will this be be your only amp? If not, what else is in the stable?

    What kind of music do you play?

    How far away can you get from the family while practicing?

    Thanks in advance for answers. Trying to help.
    I currently have a Fender Deluxe Reverb with a Celestion Alnico Bulldog 12" and master volume added on the back.
    Also a Marshall JCM 800 50 watt Combo.

    If I had an amp that could be as clean and great reverb like the Fender, but crank up to the Marshall gain, that would be great.
    However, I seem to tend towards the Marshall most of the time.

    And don't suggest a Mesa Boogie can do both, as I have one of those too [50 Calaber +]. As far as I'm concerned, the MESA doesn't do Fender as good as the Fender does, and the MESA doesn't do Marshall as good as the Marshall does, which is why I will be selling it after I get this practice amp. It does MESA good though!

    With the Fender and Marshall that I have, I have all the sounds that I would ever need (or want) with those 2 amps.

    Now I just need one that I can play in the house without being nagged about it.

  28. #68

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al View Post
    It is nuts how affordable they are. Usable loud stage ready gig amps AND real bedroom level practice amp. I want to try the new Pro models.
    Is the 5 watt setting really usable for home, or is it too loud?

  29. #69
    Les Paul Forum Member RJLII's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Actually never heard of Katina, so I'll look into those. If they are good for the home and out, that would definetly be a big bonus.



    I currently have a Fender Deluxe Reverb with a Celestion Alnico Bulldog 12" and master volume added on the back.
    Also a Marshall JCM 800 50 watt Combo.

    If I had an amp that could be as clean and great reverb like the Fender, but crank up to the Marshall gain, that would be great.
    However, I seem to tend towards the Marshall most of the time.

    And don't suggest a Mesa Boogie can do both, as I have one of those too [50 Calaber +]. As far as I'm concerned, the MESA doesn't do Fender as good as the Fender does, and the MESA doesn't do Marshall as good as the Marshall does, which is why I will be selling it after I get this practice amp. It does MESA good though!

    With the Fender and Marshall that I have, I have all the sounds that I would ever need (or want) with those 2 amps.

    Now I just need one that I can play in the house without being nagged about it.
    Thanks. Have you thought about an attenuator for use with the amps you have? If the whole goal is keeping the tones you have but reducing the volume that sounds like the best bet.
    Compared to most of you I suck at guitar, but I'm working real hard and sucking less every day. There, I said it.

  30. #70
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by RJLII View Post
    Thanks. Have you thought about an attenuator for use with the amps you have? If the whole goal is keeping the tones you have but reducing the volume that sounds like the best bet.
    +1

  31. #71

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by RJLII View Post
    Thanks. Have you thought about an attenuator for use with the amps you have? If the whole goal is keeping the tones you have but reducing the volume that sounds like the best bet.

    Is doing that really going to give me the same as everything on "11" LOL.

    I have never had the opportunity to get to play with the amp full throttle
    As that has generally has been too loud in most indoor situations (and definitely too loud for home).

    Also to be honest, although my current amps are not "big", they still are F'g heavy to me.

    So I kind of would like another amp that sounds like the big boys, but is an easy (light) grab & go to play at home, jam with friends or play a small venue. That would be ideal, if possible.

    Something like the new Origin 5 or 20 would be ideal, if the Marketing geniuses at Marshall didn't think saving a dollar using 8" & 10" speakers instead of 12's is the way to be able to sell the most amps.
    Also a lower competitive price would also be nice...wishfull thinking.

  32. #72
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    so to sum i:

    -you want fenderish (blackface) cleans & marshallesque overdrive/distortion?
    -small enough to crank at home but loud enough to keep up at jam sessions?
    -light weight, low power but big sound?
    -your budget is still around 350?

    unless you go ss/modeling the only way to go with your budget is an attenuator imho. plus, you mentioned you get all the sounds you "ever wanted" out of your two amps so consider yourself LUCKY - some folks seem to spend a lifetime on that. attenuator with impedance matching is a great thing and for your budget you should be able to get a badcat unleash or similar which is quite great in my opinion. will it give you the same feeling as everything on "11" (i LOVE that movie : )) ) ? no, cause there's a lot less air moving. other than that it's still great sounding with slight adjustments on your tone controls...

  33. #73

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by 0 2339 View Post
    so to sum i:

    -you want fenderish (blackface) cleans & marshallesque overdrive/distortion?
    -small enough to crank at home but loud enough to keep up at jam sessions?
    -light weight, low power but big sound?
    -your budget is still around 350?

    attenuator with impedance matching is a great thing and for your budget you should be able to get a badcat unleash or similar which is quite great in my opinion.
    Wow! Your better than a doctor! Your description is 100% accurate.

    O.K. I see an Attenuator should work, but I would need an amp with it already built in or I would have to mod it myself, as the Badcat Unleash that you are talking about costs more than the amp (and it looks like it might be a few LBs too).


    I didn't know about the Bad Cat company and noticed that they make some nice looking amps which new are out of my price range.

    However, what about a used Bad Cat Cougar 5 5W Class A Tube Guitar Combo Amp?
    It comes with a 12" Celestion Vintage 30, and seems to be available close to my price range.

    Actually the 15 Watt with Spring Reverb and more tone controls looks even better (but I'm reading it is made in China and may not clean up enough, or overdrive to Marshall sounds).

    Or any other other suggestions now knowing exactly what I want.
    Last edited by mzblues1; 04-20-18 at 11:23 AM.

  34. #74
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Wow! Your better than a doctor! Your description is 100% accurate.

    O.K. I see an Attenuator should work, but I would need an amp with it already built in or I would have to mod it myself, as the Badcat Unleash that you are talking about costs more than the amp (and it looks like it might be a few LBs too).


    I didn't know about the Bad Cat company and noticed that they make some nice looking amps which new are out of my price range.

    However, what about a used Bad Cat Cougar 5 5W Class A Tube Guitar Combo Amp?
    It comes with a 12" Celestion Vintage 30, and seems to be available close to my price range.

    Actually the 15 Watt with Spring Reverb and more tone controls looks even better!

    Or any other other suggestions now knowing exactly what I want.
    weight is not a problem with the badcat, should be around 3 pounds i guess. not sure what you mean with your first sentence but you just put an attenuator between your amp and the speakers - no mods or so, just speaker cable to hook it up.

    besides the unleash i have zero experience with bad cat's products as they're impossible to find where i am so i'm of no help on that....

    the problem i'm seeing with your wishes is that you like two very different amp designs and probably you're using them for different applications. it might be possible to find an amp that can aproximate both sounds but it will always be a compromise and probably an expensive one. it seems you're not in a rush so i'd just play any available amp that crosses your path and if it's out of your budget yet wait some months, get the dough and buy what sounds best. no need to settle on compromises as we're living in a great time if you're into gear... besides that you have 2 great amps (!!) already

    that said, i once more suggest an attenuator with impedance matching

    edit: have you ever thought about a brownface fender? there are good clones that are going for quite reasonable money on the used market...

  35. #75
    Les Paul Forum Member Cliff Gress's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    If you have $350 and think you might pop for an attenuator too (not cheap), then just buy a new Marshall Origin 20 for $649. These attenuate. 10" Celestion, EL34s.

  36. #76
    Les Paul Forum Member RJLII's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Is doing that really going to give me the same as everything on "11" LOL.
    Yes and no. The tone can actually be quite good. One component is missing though, the sound pressure.

    If I want a raging amp sound at "don't piss off the wife" volumes I use dirt pedals. There are good ones out there. The stuff from Barber (Direct Drive and LTD in particular) interact very well with Marshall and Marshall style amps. All my amps are of Fender style topology, so I use a Timmy, an Xotic AC Booster, and an Xotic RC Booster depending on the amount of rage I want to hear
    Compared to most of you I suck at guitar, but I'm working real hard and sucking less every day. There, I said it.

  37. #77

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by 0 2339 View Post

    Not sure what you mean with your first sentence.

    the problem i'm seeing with your wishes is that you like two very different amp designs and probably you're using them for different applications. it might be possible to find an amp that can aproximate both sounds but it will always be a compromise and probably an expensive one.

    that said, i once more suggest an attenuator with impedance matching

    edit: have you ever thought about a brownface fender?
    What I meant by "Your description is 100% accurate" was in reference to your description about what I am looking for:
    "-you want fenderish (blackface) cleans & marshallesque overdrive/distortion?
    -small enough to crank at home but loud enough to keep up at jam sessions?
    -light weight, low power but big sound?
    -your budget is still around 350?"

    Yes, I understand the compromise and won't be unreasonable actually thinking that I will get a Fender/Marshall amp. So of the two, I would be satisfied with getting just the Marshall Crunch, as long as it also will have enough headroom that it can also be cleaned up enough "big Marshall type Clean is fine". Just a decent clean sound (not muddy or over saturated).

    I would prefer not to have to go through the trouble of hooking everything up (sorry, I'm kind of lazy) with an Attenuator with impedance matching as a separate piece. Is there a kit available that can be installed into the Combo that is already there when you need it, that is not too expensive?

    Again, I do love the brownface Fender sound, but I need the Marshall crunch which that doesn't quite ever reach.

    Do you know anything about the Egnater Tweaker-112 Guitar Combo Amp with the 12" "Custom Voiced Egnater Elite GH-50 by Celestion".
    It sounded really good on some online videos and is able to create a variety of different sounds (really clean to really not...)?
    Might be able to get a used one in price point. But not sure if its low enough for the house or if I would still need an Attenuator.

  38. #78

    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cliff Gress View Post
    If you have $350 and think you might pop for an attenuator too (not cheap), then just buy a new Marshall Origin 20 for $649. These attenuate. 10" Celestion, EL34s.
    Yes, I would love that amp if only it was a 12" speaker!

    Have you heard it with the 10", as honestly I haven't yet?

    Also, do you know if it is big enough to be able to change the baffle and put a 12" in it in the future?
    If so, then I would definitely be willing to get one of those and be very happy with that as is with the 10" for now.

  39. #79
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    i still think attenuator is the way to go, it's not more work than hooking up an fx pedal + with an attenuator that let's you choose input impedence you will be able to play any amp at bedroom levels. even a 5watt tube amp is plenty loud if you drive it hard so it might not be ideal for home use either. and you mentioned you wanna use a 12" exclusively.... another thing to consider is that a 5 watt tube amp will probably not hang clean with a drummer... depending on the style you play of course. that brings you back to the likes of 2x6v6/el84 and so on amps and back to definitely too loud for home use... so one last time this brings us back to an attenuator or any of the before mentioned ss/modeling/hybrid amps...

    any decent amp tech should be able to install an onboard attenuator to your amps... which is probably more expensive than a good outboard unit.

    and once more - play as many amps as you can, nothing else is a substitute for experience, not even all the well meaning replies on a forum...
    Last edited by 0 2339; 04-20-18 at 05:45 PM.

  40. #80
    Les Paul Forum Member Cliff Gress's Avatar
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    Re: Best Low Watt Tube Amp?

    Quote Originally Posted by mzblues1 View Post
    Yes, I would love that amp if only it was a 12" speaker!

    Have you heard it with the 10", as honestly I haven't yet?

    Also, do you know if it is big enough to be able to change the baffle and put a 12" in it in the future?
    If so, then I would definitely be willing to get one of those and be very happy with that as is with the 10" for now.
    I've just heard the videos but the specs are good. 12"? I don't know, call Marshall.

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