Power Amp Alternatives

Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby gr8fl4295 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:32 pm

This sounds like it could be a fun project:
http://www.mojotone.com/amp-parts/amp-kits
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In the strangest of places if you look at it right.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby mijknahs » Sat Nov 17, 2012 12:41 am

GeneralGoldilocks wrote:It is too bad that someone doesn't make a guitar oriented mono tube power amp with two 6L6's that is about 40 to 50 watts with a half power switch. That would be a great rig for gigging. I am saving up for an sms and I am having a hard time figuring out what power amp to get. I am all about the Mesa Boogie 50/50 but it would be super heavy and be way too much power for me (2 50 watt channels), I just want one 50 watt channel. the 17 watt power switch would be great on that for smaller gigs, and honestly, I would probably use that more of the time. I am a 1x12 guy, I don't have any need for two 12's. I am loud enough for 90 percent of my gigs with the Fender Deluxe Reverb Reissue with a JBL E120 in it, but want to upgrade and have a more versatile rig with more headroom.

I don't think I want to get a McIntosh because of price, and I want something that will be super reliable and lighter weight. the mc 50 would work out OK if it was in great shape and I could trust it, but something that old is bound to have issues at some point. There are actually a nice pair of them on ebay right now, a little pricey, though. http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200 ... 1013411798

It is really tempting to go with a MosValve 962 or Rocktron 300, but I have never tried either one of these, and don't know how they would sound in comparison to tube circuitry. I have time to figure it out, because I don't have the money right now, anyway. A head version of any fender with the AB760 circuit in the pre and a 40 or 50 watt power section would be cool, too, although probably not quite as awesome as the sms ctp with the jerry mod and a mesa 50/50. I have been really happy with the Fender DRRI, though, just need a little more headroom.


Yes, the MC50 is a great amp. Only 21 lbs. too. You can carry it in one hand. Or you can get a Fender Bandmaster Reverb or some other 40 to 50 watt Fender tube amp.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby Scarlet » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:59 am

[quote="GeneralGoldilocks"]It is too bad that someone doesn't make a guitar oriented mono tube power amp with two 6L6's that is about 40 to 50 watts with a half power switch. That would be a great rig for gigging. I am saving up for an sms and I am having a hard time figuring out what power amp to get. I am all about the Mesa Boogie 50/50 but it would be super heavy and be way too much power for me (2 50 watt channels), I just want one 50 watt channel. the 17 watt power switch would be great on that for smaller gigs, and honestly, I would probably use that more of the time. I am a 1x12 guy, I don't have any need for two 12's. I am loud enough for 90 percent of my gigs with the Fender Deluxe Reverb Reissue with a JBL E120 in it, but want to upgrade and have a more versatile rig with more headroom.{quote]

I run SMS > Boogie 50/50 > 1x E120. I only use one side of the 50/50. I pulled the 2 6L6's out of the other side and have had no problems gigging it that way for 2 1/2 years. Works fine for me. A Mac would probably be a better option, but I'm just saying you can run a 50/50 as a 50w amp if you want.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby strummingturtle » Sat Nov 17, 2012 12:20 pm

I have the mosvalve 962 and it is a solid built great sounding amp with 2 channels at 80 watts per channel. There is one in the san francisco craig's list for $150 and it looks very clean. For that price it is definitely work taking it for a spin. You could always resale and get your money back if you do not like it.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby labassman » Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:21 am

Very cool thread guys. From my readings and what I find most amazing is the good ol word HI-FI and Class A. The most amazing thing the clarity which is self explanatory but the original theme behind these McIntoshes is for home stereo use and to be the best at it unintended for rock n roll use. If I believe most amplification setups from marshall ,fender and Vox use a Class A/B rating.
There has to be other similar solid state class A amps that fall under the best,clearest and non manipulating straight through amplification eg. no treble,bass,dolby,etc out there.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby zambiland » Mon Nov 19, 2012 1:06 am

labassman wrote:Very cool thread guys. From my readings and what I find most amazing is the good ol word HI-FI and Class A. The most amazing thing the clarity which is self explanatory but the original theme behind these McIntoshes is for home stereo use and to be the best at it unintended for rock n roll use. If I believe most amplification setups from marshall ,fender and Vox use a Class A/B rating.
There has to be other similar solid state class A amps that fall under the best,clearest and non manipulating straight through amplification eg. no treble,bass,dolby,etc out there.
RD.

Macs are not Class A. They are Class AB. Getting hundreds of watts out of a Class A rig is very very very very heavy and very costly.

Sansui made some amps that are considered on par. The first time I saw the boys (6/11/76) the PA was Sansui powered and sounded stunning. Very clear and clean. Perhaps even a step up from Mac in terms of the resolution at the quiet end of the dynamic range and yet with the same slam at the top end. I remember thinking, wow, it's not really that loud. Then, Mickey was tweaking his hihat between tunes and I realized even the hihat by itself was fucking loud, just crazy clean, so it didn't hurt. It was big, smooth, clear and just wonderful.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby JonnyBoy » Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:37 am

labassman wrote: .... The most amazing thing the clarity which is self explanatory but the original theme behind these McIntoshes is for home stereo use and to be the best at it unintended for rock n roll use....
RD.


Yhea you should see some of the looks HIFI techs give you when you tell them you use a Macintosh amp for a guitar amp. Some think it's silly, some are grotesquely curious. Some are use to it and aware of the macs use in the live music industry. They have something special about them when trying for a Jerry tone, plus they are great for all styles of play. Still something to be said about a good tube guitar amp also. A Mac is what you get when being cost effective in china wasn't an option and you have the best HIFI engineers developing an amp. A very cool relic from a much different era. I just love mine especially when I can push it just (and the rest of the system) right like Jerry did. That's not always possible at some gigs. Its really a point where everything is working perfect, the speakers, cab, SMS and Mac. It all one organism at that point.

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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby mgbills » Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:58 am

A couple of comments....

I find the Mc's very reliable...with the caveat...
They will need that service if they haven't already had it. They are totally bombproof once they're brought to spec. Think about this...that one of Jerry's was on a truck every few days ...for years.

Although I am with you. I'd like a rackmount tube section...like 1/2 a Mesa 20/20 (without the noisy fan), and 1/2 a Mesa 50/50. Maybe with 2 6V6's & 2 6L6's. I'll put it on the project list for 2013.

On Bass amps. I don't know why, but 2/3 of the bass players I encounter have that idea about amps. They play lifeless SS rigs, and are really opinionated about the rediculousness of power amplification. It's been totally awesome to hear the guys on this board that are the opposite. I was just talking to a coworker this morning extolling the virtues of his 600 watt ($300) SS amp, and how it blows away this beautiful old Ampeg that another local player has. To my ear (and my high range is questionable) it's night an day. That SS this is mushy and flubby, and lacks any reason for existence.

Oh well...opinions are like...
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby zambiland » Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:55 pm

mgbills wrote:A couple of comments....

I find the Mc's very reliable...with the caveat...
They will need that service if they haven't already had it. They are totally bombproof once they're brought to spec. Think about this...that one of Jerry's was on a truck every few days ...for years.

Although I am with you. I'd like a rackmount tube section...like 1/2 a Mesa 20/20 (without the noisy fan), and 1/2 a Mesa 50/50. Maybe with 2 6V6's & 2 6L6's. I'll put it on the project list for 2013.

On Bass amps. I don't know why, but 2/3 of the bass players I encounter have that idea about amps. They play lifeless SS rigs, and are really opinionated about the rediculousness of power amplification. It's been totally awesome to hear the guys on this board that are the opposite. I was just talking to a coworker this morning extolling the virtues of his 600 watt ($300) SS amp, and how it blows away this beautiful old Ampeg that another local player has. To my ear (and my high range is questionable) it's night an day. That SS this is mushy and flubby, and lacks any reason for existence.

Oh well...opinions are like...
M


I have yet to see a $300 amp that was worth playing (OK, my 2015 was $250, but that was in 1979). OTOH, some solid state is just amazing. Crest amps are the sonic equal of pretty much any tube amp if you are into the clean thing. However, I'd still love to get an MC3500 and a roadie.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby jenkins » Tue Nov 20, 2012 2:46 am

mgbills wrote:A couple of comments....

I find the Mc's very reliable...with the caveat...
They will need that service if they haven't already had it. They are totally bombproof once they're brought to spec. Think about this...that one of Jerry's was on a truck every few days ...for years.

Although I am with you. I'd like a rackmount tube section...like 1/2 a Mesa 20/20 (without the noisy fan), and 1/2 a Mesa 50/50. Maybe with 2 6V6's & 2 6L6's. I'll put it on the project list for 2013.

On Bass amps. I don't know why, but 2/3 of the bass players I encounter have that idea about amps. They play lifeless SS rigs, and are really opinionated about the rediculousness of power amplification. It's been totally awesome to hear the guys on this board that are the opposite. I was just talking to a coworker this morning extolling the virtues of his 600 watt ($300) SS amp, and how it blows away this beautiful old Ampeg that another local player has. To my ear (and my high range is questionable) it's night an day. That SS this is mushy and flubby, and lacks any reason for existence.

Oh well...opinions are like...
M


It's funny, a lot of bass players seem to think the power amp doesn't effect tone huh?
I've witnessed this many times, they seem to think a power amp is a power amp.

I can tell you that is dead wrong, play some bass through a Mac and it just sounds incredible.
I play bass sometimes on projects just cuz there aren as many bassists as guitarists.
I never truly liked my bass tone until I got my Mac, now I love it whenever I get to play it.
My bk butler "real tube" preamp into my mc2120 sounds exactly like John kahns bass sounded, it's awesome.
That same preamp into other power amps sounds pretty good, but not great. Plug it into the Mac and It sounds incredible.
Full, rich, warm and every note sounds great.
Anyone who's saying the power amp doesn't color their tone just hasn't played through a quality enough power amp IMO.

I really want to have my band powered by all macs, the guitars, bass, keys all have their own that get mic'd through a 2300 or two for the pa, depending on the size of the room.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby jenkins » Tue Nov 20, 2012 2:58 am

zambiland wrote:
labassman wrote:Very cool thread guys. From my readings and what I find most amazing is the good ol word HI-FI and Class A. The most amazing thing the clarity which is self explanatory but the original theme behind these McIntoshes is for home stereo use and to be the best at it unintended for rock n roll use. If I believe most amplification setups from marshall ,fender and Vox use a Class A/B rating.
There has to be other similar solid state class A amps that fall under the best,clearest and non manipulating straight through amplification eg. no treble,bass,dolby,etc out there.
RD.

Macs are not Class A. They are Class AB. Getting hundreds of watts out of a Class A rig is very very very very heavy and very costly.

Sansui made some amps that are considered on par. The first time I saw the boys (6/11/76) the PA was Sansui powered and sounded stunning. Very clear and clean. Perhaps even a step up from Mac in terms of the resolution at the quiet end of the dynamic range and yet with the same slam at the top end. I remember thinking, wow, it's not really that loud. Then, Mickey was tweaking his hihat between tunes and I realized even the hihat by itself was fucking loud, just crazy clean, so it didn't hurt. It was big, smooth, clear and just wonderful.


Sansui?? The boys used those in 76? Are you sure about that?
I thought after they broke down the wall of sound they still used the macs for several years until moving on to phase linears for the late 70's and then crest in the 80's. I've never heard of them using sansui. I thought for sure they were still using macs for the pa in 76, but I obviously could be wrong.

Something I gotta agree with you on, is the sound quality of these hi-fi amps.
This is what shocked me more about my macs than anything else, you can crank em LOUD and they don't hurt your ears. It's amazing. My ears used to hurt after playing a show through my twin combo, but never with my Mac.

We'll play acoustic gigs and use the Mac for the pa, on channel for the house and the other channel for the monitors. Sometimes if the place is a lil bigger we'll use both channels of the 2120 for the house and my 2505 for the monitors.
They sound simply amazing for acoustic guitars and vocals. And our ears never hurt anymore, it's awesome. everythime we use the macs for sound someone comes up and asks us what the trick is to make the sound quality so good, I always just point to the macs. It's funny how intrigued people are by the 2505 too, cuz it looks so cool with the blue meters and glass front.
I can just go on and on about how awesome Macintosh amps are. LOl
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby jenkins » Mon Nov 26, 2012 4:54 pm

So does anyone know if the boys actually used sansui amps for their pa at all?
I always thought they used macs until about 78 when they switched to phase linear which they used til about 80-81 when they switched to crest which I believe they used the rest of their career. I know they used Meyer labs speakers but did the GD ever use Meyer amps at the end? Are there even meyer amps or do they just have powered speakers?
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby zambiland » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:24 pm

jenkins wrote:So does anyone know if the boys actually used sansui amps for their pa at all?
I always thought they used macs until about 78 when they switched to phase linear which they used til about 80-81 when they switched to crest which I believe they used the rest of their career. I know they used Meyer labs speakers but did the GD ever use Meyer amps at the end? Are there even meyer amps or do they just have powered speakers?



The Sansui amps were only for the comeback '76 east coast tour. When they did that tour, they didn't want to lug gear from the west coast and the Wall was gone. They rented from Jeff Cook and Bearsville Sound in upstate NY. It's all in Blair's book. While there are aspects of the book that might be inaccurate or incomplete, the stories about this PA ring very true to what I saw that night (6/11/76). If you google Grateful Dead+1976+Sansui, you'll get some pages from the book.

I think Crest amps were used until Meyer became self-powered, but I could be wrong. I think Meyer became self-powered after Jerry died.
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby JonnyBoy » Tue Nov 27, 2012 12:49 pm

Thought this would be pretty cool too as a backup maybe. What is Class T? They seem to have good parts for the money.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/INDEED-CLASS-T-AMP-TRIPATH-TA2021S-25WX2-STEREO-12V5A-POWER-ADAPTER-US-SHIP-/290811897909?pt=US_Home_Audio_Amplifiers_Preamps&hash=item43b5bd6835
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Re: Power Amp Alternatives

Postby gpilcher2001 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 5:15 pm

Has anyone tried the groove tubes D75?
good to know you got shoes to wear when you find the floor.....
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