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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #153132  by gratefulfork
 Tue Jul 26, 2016 7:57 pm
Hey all,
I've read many rave reviews of the JC-77 as a good place to start for Bob's post hiatus 70's tone, but can it do other things too? I need a new amp, but only have the money for one and don't only play the dead, I'm also the lead player for another group. Can I get lead tones (of the clean and slightly driven, think Santana or Dicky Betts, variety) out of the JC? Thanks in advance for your help
 #153135  by strumminsix
 Tue Jul 26, 2016 8:15 pm
imo that's more in the guitar config and attack than the amp. and nothing sounds better for rock and roll lead like a tube amp cooking. If I were to recommend an amp I'd say look for a 64 vibroverb reissue. Nice blackface tones and tubes. I've got an original 64 and it's the best amp I own. Bobby used 15" speakers in the early 70s and maybe in the late (can't find my notes on that). but either way a 15" helps with chimeyness as it nicely holds the low mids, can dial out the bass, and accentuate the presence.
 #153137  by mkaufman
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 5:09 am
I have the JC77. Although I found nothing wrong with the stock speakers, I replaced them with JBL D110's.

Of course, the amp is great for clean tones, however, using external effects, I get very nice lead tones out of the amp.

ace
 #153139  by PaulJay
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 6:47 am
I have had mine for years. You can't kill it. I left it in the back of my Jeep in all kinds of temperatures. I would never do that with a tube amp. You can find them for $300 and worth every penny. You don't have to worry about tubes. As far as lead playing goes it takes pedals very well. You should have no problem playing Santana or Allman's.
 #153141  by JDB30
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 8:02 am
Almost impossible to find the kind of range you're looking for in a single channel combo amp, regardless of what it is. If you're willing to spend the money, I'd go for a Fractal if you want that kind of range. Or, you could get a multi-channel pre-amp (CAE 3+SE or one of the new Synergy modular tube pre-amps that you can load with different modules to give you different sounds) + a power amp, which will pretty much get you anything from Weir mid-'70's clean to high gain metal and everything in between. But... you're going to a financial price and it's gonna weigh a lot more. Fractal + a solid state power amp & a small speaker cabinet might be the way to go (you can take a direct feed from the Fractal to the board) and use the speaker for stage monitoring.
 #153143  by strumminsix
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 9:21 am
JDB30 wrote:Almost impossible to find the kind of range you're looking for in a single channel combo amp, regardless of what it is. If you're willing to spend the money, I'd go for a Fractal if you want that kind of range. Or, you could get a multi-channel pre-amp (CAE 3+SE or one of the new Synergy modular tube pre-amps that you can load with different modules to give you different sounds) + a power amp, which will pretty much get you anything from Weir mid-'70's clean to high gain metal and everything in between. But... you're going to a financial price and it's gonna weigh a lot more. Fractal + a solid state power amp & a small speaker cabinet might be the way to go (you can take a direct feed from the Fractal to the board) and use the speaker for stage monitoring.
That's good advice too. I'd only expand to a different thought: If you are going to go modelling, I'd encourage you to instead use a powered monitor. Much lighter, less gear, and with a mixer (mic splitter, DI box to just grab whatever the monitor feed is) you can have a semi custom mix (custom your own vox and guitar, non-custom whatever the rest of the mix is) very effortlessly.
 #153145  by JDB30
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 1:42 pm
strumminsix wrote:
JDB30 wrote:Almost impossible to find the kind of range you're looking for in a single channel combo amp, regardless of what it is. If you're willing to spend the money, I'd go for a Fractal if you want that kind of range. Or, you could get a multi-channel pre-amp (CAE 3+SE or one of the new Synergy modular tube pre-amps that you can load with different modules to give you different sounds) + a power amp, which will pretty much get you anything from Weir mid-'70's clean to high gain metal and everything in between. But... you're going to a financial price and it's gonna weigh a lot more. Fractal + a solid state power amp & a small speaker cabinet might be the way to go (you can take a direct feed from the Fractal to the board) and use the speaker for stage monitoring.
That's good advice too. I'd only expand to a different thought: If you are going to go modelling, I'd encourage you to instead use a powered monitor. Much lighter, less gear, and with a mixer (mic splitter, DI box to just grab whatever the monitor feed is) you can have a semi custom mix (custom your own vox and guitar, non-custom whatever the rest of the mix is) very effortlessly.
That's certainly an option and why, regardless of whether you use and amp/speaker or not, I suggested that you use a direct feed to the PA. If you're only going for Weir cleans, that should suffice. But, if you're going for something with more gain and you want the ability to get feedback with your guitar, you'll need a guitar cabinet on stage. Either way, it's a great solution for someone wanting maximum tonal flexibility for live performance. You also get the added benefit of some great modeled effects that you can add, along with the ability to program your sounds and recall via MIDI pedal board, etc. So many professional touring guitarists are now moving to Fractals for their live rig. You get a great system in a 3 or 4 space rack plus a cabinet.
 #153146  by gratefulfork
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 2:08 pm
This is super interesting and informative, but unfortunately right now I can only really afford things below around 800, so I'm not gonna be building a rack anytime soon. I was thinking of the boogie dual rectifier 5 as something to cover most of my bases. Any thoughts? Thanks all for your insight!
 #153148  by douglasa
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 4:59 pm
I played my ES-345 through a Boogie Dual Rectifier amp several years ago. I plugged it into the clean channel, and although it was very clean, it was the worst sounding amp I ever played through. Very harsh and glassy sounding. #$^%& TERRIBLE!!!
 #153149  by HeadSpace
 Wed Jul 27, 2016 6:22 pm
A used Mesa Boogie Mark series amp could be had for $800 if you look around a bit and would work VERY well for everything you have in mind. In fact, both Bob and Santana have used them. The Rectos are kinda metal-ish.
 #153150  by gratefulfork
 Thu Jul 28, 2016 5:21 am
Oh cool thanks! I knew Bob had used a boogie at some point but wasn't sure which one. Any suggestions on Mark what? I've heard that some are better than others