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New Small Gigging Amp Needed

Discussion in 'Amp Input - Normal or Bright' started by mapleglo, May 22, 2019.

  1. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    So I have this:

    complete.jpg

    A PA 100 hundred watt Fender tube amp, and a 2x12 custom built, open back cab. It sounds great, but it weighs a ton. And I'm seriously too old to be lugging this around. And I'm thinking I need a combo, less trips to and from the car.

    I play rhythm guitar in a country band. I don't need any overdriven sound, so I think even a solid state amp will do. I think 1x12 will be enough. I'd like to keep the total cost under a grand. We play mostly small bars, well under 100 people, and we have a pretty good PA if we're going to play larger venues, so we can mic everything. 5 piece band - lead guitar, singer, bass and drums. And me.

    I looked at an Orange Crush Pro CR60C - 60 watts, 1x12, solid state - at GC the other day. Sounded fine, only $500, but the controls are at the top instead of the front. It weighs just under 45 pounds, which is about as much as I care to carry.

    I suppose I could just get a Fender Deluxe Reverb, or there's a SuperSonic combo in my local CL for $650. Though I have concerns about a used tube amp (of course, that's what I have now). Though I'm thinking 22 watts will be just enough power.

    I don't want a Marshall. Not the right look or sound. I'm pretty much devoted to either Orange or Fender, and the more I think about it, Fender would seem to be the logical choice. Though that Orange sounded pretty good. I'm against Fender solid state amps - I had one and it was terrible - noisy, and the digital reverb was awful.

    Ok, sorry for the long winded description. Any suggestions for the prefect small gigging amp?
     
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  2. circles

    circles Resident Pinball Enthusiast Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I really like my SuperSonic 22, and would suit your needs, but in your case I'd lean solid state for long term reliability imho.
     
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  3. BallisticSquid

    BallisticSquid Most Honored Senior Member

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    Maybe you can find a Fender Frontman. They had great clean headroom which sounds like what you need. The Frontaman series was discontinued and it seems like the Champion line replaced it.

    A used solid state (or even tube) Peavey could fit the bill also. My old ValveKing 112 had fantastic clean headroom, and so did my Special 112 from the 80's.
     
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  4. heltershelton

    heltershelton BANNED Strat-Talk Supporter

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    I'd go with the deluxe reverb.
     
  5. Ferpie

    Ferpie Senior Stratmaster

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    Grab the first fender champion 100 you see and run. No seriously tho, check them out they’re a bargain and just will work perfectly for your needs.

    They look vintage, they look heavy so they’re perfect for the stage vibe.

    298349A2-105C-4CB9-923F-87EF33FFD036.jpeg
     
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  6. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    I see Frontman series amps on CL often. That may be an option. Those are pretty inexpensive too. I wonder about the weight though - I seem to remember they are 2x12?
     
  7. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    I have concerns about the newer Fender solid state amps due to my previous bad experiences. I guess the Frontman would also fall into that category. The Deluxe Reverb is looking better and better.
     
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  8. Bob the builder

    Bob the builder Most Honored Senior Member

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    I had a frontman 212R
    It was on the heavy side. Nice cleans, the od I thought was terrible
     
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  9. Ferpie

    Ferpie Senior Stratmaster

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    Totally get where you’re coming from, I know I had a champion 100 for 5 years before moving back to tubes because of a great deal i couldn’t resist but guess what, I still don’t know why im playing anything else haha.

    An other option would be hot rod deluxe, this might be THE most ‘’by the book’’ choice
     
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  10. nederemer

    nederemer Senior Stratmaster

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    Vox ac15c1

    Brad Paisley plays (or used to at least before the affiliation with DR. Z) a AC30 it would be that kind of sound - if you know what I mean. Of course his has alnico blue speakers though.
     
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  11. CigBurn

    CigBurn Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

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    So I was in GC not long ago and a guy had a strat plugged into a Fender Rumble 100. It sounded brilliant. Had none of the spikeiness they frontman series suffers with. They actually come in a huge variety of sizes and the 40 watt version is something like 18 pounds and under $200. They have a clean and dirt channel and basic EQ as well. Something to consider anyway.

     
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  12. chicago slim

    chicago slim Strat-O-Master

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    I've used a Fender SCXD, since 2009. I upgraded the speaker to an Eminence Legend 105, and it's now capable of shows up to 200 people. If I need more power for outdoors, I use the Line Out into a PA. The SCX2 would be the modern equivalent. I've started using the Boss Katana's, over the last two years. I'm happy with the sound and weight, and have never connected it to a computer. I just use it like a normal amp. It has taken a little time to learn how to dial it in.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. ido1957

    ido1957 Senior Stratmaster

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    I recently bought a Katana 100 (1 X 12 ) and use it for pub jams. Yes the controls are on top.
    I bought and sold three 1 X 12 tube amps which were nice but too heavy for my old back.
    It has a ton of features and I love it. As a Marshall owner (still) I never thought i would go SS but I did :)
     
  14. guitarface

    guitarface Most Honored Senior Member

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    How about a Princeton?
     
  15. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    You know, if all else fails, I'll use my Orange bass amp.

    stack-orange.jpg

    Maybe with just one 12. I've been using this at home for practice, because it's closest to me. The Fender is stuffed behind a bunch of cases. This actually sounds pretty good, but I do want a combo - something I can put on top of a tilt-back amp stand.

    I think I can handle a 40 pound amp. But the lighter, the better. I have no issues with solid state, so long as it sounds good. :p

    The top mounted controls bug me for some reason. On a tilt-back stand, they're hard to get to. Though I'm pretty much a set and forget player. I typically change tone from either the guitar or pedal board. The Katana's get pretty good reviews. Though Im still leaning toward a Fender of some kind.
     
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  16. BallisticSquid

    BallisticSquid Most Honored Senior Member

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    The only reason I hesitated to suggest the Katana (2 of them in my house...great amp!) is that clean headroom isn't it's strong suit. To get any volume out of the clean "amp type" you have to add gain, which starts dirtying up the tone. Otherwise you have to add some sort of boost. Which may or may not be the desired situation here.

    Since I don't really use pristine clean cleans any more, it hasn't bothered me, but I did notice this when I first got the amp.
     
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  17. Ferpie

    Ferpie Senior Stratmaster

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    The amp is literally twice as loud on the brown settings if not more... i don’t think the Katana was aimed at a clean player, i mean you have the option and its ok but definitely not fender cleans...
     
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  18. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    Yeah, totally looking for a "Fender clean" sound.
     
  19. mapleglo

    mapleglo Senior Stratmaster

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    I had a Princeton Reverb for many years. What a great amp, I am so sorry I got rid of it. What was I thinking? I wonder if it would have had enough power for gigging. I used to jam with it - it seemed to be able to keep up.
     
  20. johnnymg

    johnnymg Most Honored Senior Member

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    FWIW, I really like my Katana 100 for Fender type cleans. Overall, the Kat is hard to beat albeit it is ~33 pounds. I way prefer (overall) the Kat compared to my Fender DRRI. JMO
    The only downside to the Kats is that they only come alive after a deep dive with the SW editor. Again, JMO!

    If you want a lighter amp for Fender cleans you should demo the Fender Mustang III (older model) or the GT. Both are fairly light weight. I owned a Mustang III for a couple years and loved the Fender clean tones from it. One big advantage the Mustangs have is that they have an LCD screen for instant editing of a preset. That would be a BIG bonus if using the amp at various locations.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2019
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