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Old 11-18-2007, 03:03 AM   #1
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Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I seriously need help from you all. It a nutshell, my Marshall 250DFX (2x12) was stolen from me. I need to rebuild and buy a new amp, because this little squier amp is cutting it. My Dad was laughing at me this morning when I plugged my Gibson LP Classic into it. Here are my questions:

Should I go for a tube, hybrid, or back solid state this time around? What's the difference?

Why the heck are combos just as expensive, if not more expensive than half stacks? I see the Marshall JVM410c (combo) going for $2,2300 while the Marshall JVM410H and 1960A or 1960B Half Stack are going for $2,330 at Guitar Center! What is it about combos that I've been noticing such a high price, that are close to stacks themselves?

What's the difference between combos and stacks really?

Would investing in a JVM be a good thing. I'm kind of in love with Marshalls, but I've heard good stuff about Fender and VOX.

Ultimately, I love high gain! Not necessarily Wylde metal, but something good for break down, while still having bluesy sounds with awesome clean!

Thanks a bunch!
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Old 11-18-2007, 04:48 AM   #2
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

That sucks that your amp got stolen... Karma is a bitch man, the dude that took it will get what is coming to him.

I too am looking for a new amp, and in my search and experiences with past amps... I have learned that TUBE amps are where its at. Once you start playing on them, you won't go back. Basically, in a really short, completely un-technical way, I will sorta explain tube vs. solid-state for you. Basically, a solid-state amp uses circuitry to process the sounds and tones your guitar and amp make. As I've herd it put before, 0's and 1's don't process sound well (or something along those lines)! And after owning tube and solid state amps, I couldn't agree more. Tubes process sound in a much more natural sorta way. They are a LOT louder than solid-state, and much warmer/smoother sounding. Tube amps are also more expensive than solid-state, as you will notice. But they are worth it, in my opinion.

I am not a tube genius, but I'm sure somebody will chime in and spit some more knowledge our way. I hope that brief comparison/contrast helps you at least a little bit though.

Idk what your budget is, or if you have one. But, you really can't go wrong with a good tube Vox or Fender amp. Some other brands that I would recommend are B-52, Orange, Laney, Mesa... But you know what they say, try everything and get what you think sounds the best!


The hands-down, best advice I can give you though... GO WITH TUBES!!! You won't regret it!!!


Hope this helps you a little bit man! Good luck!
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:01 AM   #3
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I have had alot of amps and guitars stolen,
keep an eye on your stuff

There are alot of amps that are good, just go to a music store and try them out
if the store guys get irritated say "ok ill go to the ____store and try some"

Last edited by coldsteal2; 11-19-2007 at 12:44 PM.
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Old 11-18-2007, 09:06 AM   #4
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Quote:
Originally Posted by meximetal View Post
I seriously need help from you all. It a nutshell, my Marshall 250DFX (2x12) was stolen from me. I need to rebuild and buy a new amp, because this little squier amp is cutting it. My Dad was laughing at me this morning when I plugged my Gibson LP Classic into it. Here are my questions:

Should I go for a tube, hybrid, or back solid state this time around? What's the difference?

Why the heck are combos just as expensive, if not more expensive than half stacks? I see the Marshall JVM410c (combo) going for $2,2300 while the Marshall JVM410H and 1960A or 1960B Half Stack are going for $2,330 at Guitar Center! What is it about combos that I've been noticing such a high price, that are close to stacks themselves?

What's the difference between combos and stacks really?

Would investing in a JVM be a good thing. I'm kind of in love with Marshalls, but I've heard good stuff about Fender and VOX.

Ultimately, I love high gain! Not necessarily Wylde metal, but something good for break down, while still having bluesy sounds with awesome clean!

Thanks a bunch!
Max you may find giggin a half stack , if you are doing or planning any gigging is not an easy thing in many places. Combos easier to tote and manage, The JVM has alot of options whole lotta channels, Two Channels should suffice, remember the more thats in the amp the more that can go wrong with the amp. Me I am a tube junky, For blues and gain and TRUE good tone, Nothin beats tubes. Take your fav axe down to a few music stores and start pluggin in,
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:45 PM   #5
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Originally Posted by lp59aholicDon View Post
Combos easier to tote and manage, The JVM has alot of options whole lotta channels, Two Channels should suffice, remember the more thats in the amp the more that can go wrong with the amp.
Yeah I would suspect that there's a lot of room for defects and problems with so many buttons.

But why are combos just as much?
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:50 PM   #6
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Originally Posted by meximetal View Post
Yeah I would suspect that there's a lot of room for defects and problems with so many buttons.

But why are combos just as much?
well you get the whole deal with Combos, amp head and speakers in one, Handier, Less to haul around, Half stacks and full stacks sound great, but are ya gonna be doin Stadiums? If your mostly gonna be playing at home and local gigging, do ya need more than 50 Watts? I cant even get 40 to 50 watt amps over 2 or 2 and a half in most places, I dont own a attenuator
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Old 11-18-2007, 01:11 PM   #7
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Try out some Mesa amps if you are able. I had one and love it for its responsiveness and tone. I'm trading a VHT Pittbull 45 2 x 10 ( Nice tube amp, too loud for my needs ), and a 65 reissue Fender Deluxe Reverb for a Mesa Lonestar Special.
I'm debating on the 4 x 10 or the 1 x 12. Lots of tonal options and a five watt class A option as well! Wicked Pissah as we say around these parts!

The 4 x 10 has two different sets of 10" speakers for even more tonal complexity. Some of these new amps are really well thought out and offer a lot of tonal variation. The clean channel is quite nice and the lead channel is a syrupy as I like fort for every other style, I'd recommend it.

Here's a pic of the small stack and a 2 x 12 combo:

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Old 11-18-2007, 01:24 PM   #8
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I had a half-stack once, and I really didn't care for it. I think the main difference is that you get more low-end since the cab is a closed-back cab.

I prefer combos, and most of them allow for extension speakers, so you have more options with a combo.
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Old 11-18-2007, 01:38 PM   #9
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Quote:
Originally Posted by meximetal View Post
I seriously need help from you all. It a nutshell, my Marshall 250DFX (2x12) was stolen from me. I need to rebuild and buy a new amp, because this little squier amp is cutting it. My Dad was laughing at me this morning when I plugged my Gibson LP Classic into it. Here are my questions:

Should I go for a tube, hybrid, or back solid state this time around? What's the difference?

Why the heck are combos just as expensive, if not more expensive than half stacks? I see the Marshall JVM410c (combo) going for $2,2300 while the Marshall JVM410H and 1960A or 1960B Half Stack are going for $2,330 at Guitar Center! What is it about combos that I've been noticing such a high price, that are close to stacks themselves?

What's the difference between combos and stacks really?

Would investing in a JVM be a good thing. I'm kind of in love with Marshalls, but I've heard good stuff about Fender and VOX.

Ultimately, I love high gain! Not necessarily Wylde metal, but something good for break down, while still having bluesy sounds with awesome clean!

Thanks a bunch!
to the first question: of course, tube!

and to the other question.. combos aren't necessarily always more expensive.. they can be just as expensive as stacks but they can be cheap too.. there are more less-expensive combos than less-expensive stacks..

stack = head + cabinet..
combo = head +cabinet IN ONE, thus "combo" ..

for one thing, combos are easier to transport, more compact, and depending on your situation (whether you gig a lot, play mostly at home, etc), they can be a lot more practical..

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Old 11-18-2007, 01:42 PM   #10
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Originally Posted by lp59aholicDon View Post
well you get the whole deal with Combos, amp head and speakers in one, Handier, Less to haul around, Half stacks and full stacks sound great, but are ya gonna be doin Stadiums? If your mostly gonna be playing at home and local gigging, do ya need more than 50 Watts? I cant even get 40 to 50 watt amps over 2 or 2 and a half in most places, I dont own a attenuator
that's right.. some people don't realize that when we're talkin' tube amp stacks or even just half-stacks, we're talking REALLY REALLY LOUD! .. like Don said.. "are ya gonna be doin Stadiums?" .. .. if not, then a combo can be more than enough.. and like hed has said, you can attach extension speakers to most of 'em if you still want more volume.. and don't forget, there are combos that are 100 watts if you really REALLY want it loud!



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Old 11-18-2007, 02:36 PM   #11
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

We use half and full stacks for gigs, but to be honest, they NEVER get used to their potential. I have yet to do a gig with my 800 turned up past 2.5 on the Master.

And even that is screaming loud.

You can't beat the look of a stack back-drop though. Most big name players have walls of empty cabs set up on stage, and use a combo mic'ed up in behind them... its all the illusion of the 'big' rock and roll setups of the 70's... but the truth of it is, you don't need that anymore, and nobody wants the music to be so loud they can't think.
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Old 11-18-2007, 03:02 PM   #12
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I've heard that a lot of artists used to have unused stacks as well! One such being Angus Young, having a combo miked in a sound proof room! I was set on a half stack, but I think that a 2x12 tube combo would blow my friends SS 100HDFX head and speaker cabinets. He tries to convince me to get a stack, and all the more I see it's about appearance. I have a Jeep Wrangler, so it will be even more of a chore to get a head and cab in that thing. I guess I'll go with a combo! Now the question is:

Which one?! I love the idea of the JVM combo! I need something for clean cleans, blue blues, and high gain! Please help!
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Old 11-18-2007, 04:56 PM   #13
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

BUMP! I need help! lol
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:08 PM   #14
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Quote:
Originally Posted by meximetal View Post
I've heard that a lot of artists used to have unused stacks as well! One such being Angus Young, having a combo miked in a sound proof room! I was set on a half stack, but I think that a 2x12 tube combo would blow my friends SS 100HDFX head and speaker cabinets. He tries to convince me to get a stack, and all the more I see it's about appearance. I have a Jeep Wrangler, so it will be even more of a chore to get a head and cab in that thing. I guess I'll go with a combo! Now the question is:

Which one?! I love the idea of the JVM combo! I need something for clean cleans, blue blues, and high gain! Please help!
Get a JCM 900, early preferable Mesa Single or Double Rectifier , and get a good over drive pedal for the medium bluesy blues leave the high gain crunch for the amp 50 watts of tube tone should smoke your friends SS HDFX comin thru 2 12's Also Check Fenders Blues Deville 60 watts of ALL Good Tube tone
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:55 PM   #15
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Originally Posted by meximetal View Post
I've heard that a lot of artists used to have unused stacks as well! One such being Angus Young, having a combo miked in a sound proof room! I was set on a half stack, but I think that a 2x12 tube combo would blow my friends SS 100HDFX head and speaker cabinets. He tries to convince me to get a stack, and all the more I see it's about appearance. I have a Jeep Wrangler, so it will be even more of a chore to get a head and cab in that thing. I guess I'll go with a combo! Now the question is:

Which one?! I love the idea of the JVM combo! I need something for clean cleans, blue blues, and high gain! Please help!
how bout a used JCM 800?



honestly man, we can only help you so much.. YOU have to do most of the research yourself.. and the best way to do that is to get out there and start tryin' some for yourself

don't forget to clean your ears before ya go out there!



good luck!

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Old 11-18-2007, 06:10 PM   #16
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Yeah man, if your looking for REALLY loud. Check out the B-52 AT-212 combo amp. It's 100w tube, 2x12, and about $700 brand new. I personally owned one of these amps and it would be great for what you would want to do (high gain metaly kinda stuff, and bluesy kinda stuff as well.).

It's got a lot of good features to it, but I have herd some horror stories about them overheating and bad craftsmanship. But mine was perfectly fine, and used for band practices and gigged to death as well.


You can also get the AT-212 set-up in half-stack form as well, for about $1000. It isn't a bad deal, but you get the same thing more/less in the combo amp for cheaper.
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Old 11-18-2007, 09:07 PM   #17
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Yeah man, if your looking for REALLY loud. Check out the B-52 AT-212 combo amp. It's 100w tube, 2x12, and about $700 brand new. I personally owned one of these amps and it would be great for what you would want to do (high gain metaly kinda stuff, and bluesy kinda stuff as well.).

It's got a lot of good features to it, but I have herd some horror stories about them overheating and bad craftsmanship. But mine was perfectly fine, and used for band practices and gigged to death as well.


You can also get the AT-212 set-up in half-stack form as well, for about $1000. It isn't a bad deal, but you get the same thing more/less in the combo amp for cheaper.


B-52 AT-212 100-Watt 2 x 12" Combo Tube Amp and more Guitar Amplifiers at GuitarCenter.com.

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Old 11-19-2007, 12:26 AM   #18
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I think I can help you out here. After playing for many years on solid state half and full stacks I recently bought a tube combo and guess what, screw solid state. I recently bought a traynor VCY40T 2X10 it is 40 watts and it would blow my old 100 watt full stack over. It screams. The cleans are so clean It brings tears to my eyes and the overdrive is right where I need it. For heavy distortion I run throught a Digitach RP350. I did change out the tubes for a JJ retube kit and swapped the Celestion Tube 10 speakers for a set of Celestion Vintage 10 and man I would put it up against any amp marshall, VOX, Fender it holds its own very nicely. And it is easily transported. Total cost with upgrades. 740.00 cant beat tubes.
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:28 AM   #19
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

That is a gnarly amp! But like I said, beware, there has been some B-52 horror stories.
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:43 AM   #20
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

It's retarded that the closest guitar center (about 35 mins. away) doesn't have all that many tube amps to sample! :[]
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:46 AM   #21
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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It's retarded that the closest guitar center (about 35 mins. away) doesn't have all that many tube amps to sample! :[]
That just bites, yeah many of the shops in my town and we dont have a GC round here yet have too many SS Amps and many of the tubes amps they have are very high end, Like Mesa , Higher end Marshalls ect
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Old 11-19-2007, 11:40 AM   #22
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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I think I can help you out here. After playing for many years on solid state half and full stacks I recently bought a tube combo and guess what, screw solid state. I recently bought a traynor VCY40T 2X10 it is 40 watts and it would blow my old 100 watt full stack over. It screams. The cleans are so clean It brings tears to my eyes and the overdrive is right where I need it. For heavy distortion I run throught a Digitach RP350. I did change out the tubes for a JJ retube kit and swapped the Celestion Tube 10 speakers for a set of Celestion Vintage 10 and man I would put it up against any amp marshall, VOX, Fender it holds its own very nicely. And it is easily transported. Total cost with upgrades. 740.00 cant beat tubes.
nice to hear a good review on the traynors

i'm still set to get the YCV20WR.. .. i probably won't re-tube for about a year or two or less.. and i hope the greenback speaker will win me over



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Old 11-20-2007, 02:29 AM   #23
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

The Fender Hot Rod DeVille sounds sweet! If only I mainly played blues and what not. Gah, I just need something for every genre! I guess in the end I might have 2 amps. I need something with awesome gain! :] Marshall's are expensive $$$
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Old 11-20-2007, 03:30 AM   #24
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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The Fender Hot Rod DeVille sounds sweet! If only I mainly played blues and what not. Gah, I just need something for every genre! I guess in the end I might have 2 amps. I need something with awesome gain! :] Marshall's are expensive $$$
CHeck out Ceritone Amps, Kit amps of Older Marshalls you can buy a completed amp but need to provide your own cab and speaker(s)
CeriaTone.Com - DIY Guitar Tube Amp
http://www.ceriatone.com/images/Head...rontside5B.jpg
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Old 11-20-2007, 03:01 PM   #25
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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The Fender Hot Rod DeVille sounds sweet! If only I mainly played blues and what not. Gah, I just need something for every genre! I guess in the end I might have 2 amps. I need something with awesome gain! :] Marshall's are expensive $$$
I'm sure you have a distortion pedal. Some dudes I know in a band called 1999, that do like grindcore/metalcore weird **** use a Fender Hot Rod Deville.
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Old 11-20-2007, 08:15 PM   #26
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Ha! I'm also looking at Orange amps, as of yesterday! $$$
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Old 11-20-2007, 09:02 PM   #27
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

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Ha! I'm also looking at Orange amps, as of yesterday! $$$
Hell yeah man, that is what you need to go with! I would get one of them if I had the money.
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:23 PM   #28
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

I wouldn't completely rule out solid state. If you gig a lot, especially if you're in some "dives", your amp may walk off or get trashed. Do you want that to happen to a $2K Marshall tube amp or to a $400 Peavey Bandit? The solid state stuff now sounds much closer to tubes than they used to, and they don't blow tubes. They're lighter. For metal, the solid state stuff is generally able to dish out solid low end thump better than the tube stuff. Still, if cost is no object, I agree tubes are the schiznit. If you're wanting something thats a good investment, forget the new stuff at GC and start looking for the vintage tube amps - based on your description I'd look for a Marshall JCM 800. Buy a copy of Hunter's book The Guitar Amp Handbook and look through that before buying your tube amp. Also look at Keenans post on Guitar amp evolution on Harmony Central. And I agree - play through lots of amps.
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Old 11-21-2007, 02:29 AM   #29
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

Haha! The Oranges sound sweet, and UnderOATH uses them which is definitely a plus for me. They're so expensive that I'll have to do a little bit of financing. I'm a young gun, so it will build my credit up anyways.

The thing is, I don't take music too seriously. My friends are complete music junkies. Their day consists of finding new riffs everyday. Personally that's not me, but I like to rock none the less. A tube amp will cover me nicely because I do full blown practices with my friend's band, and drum/guitar practice with my neighbor. Although the DeVille is 60 watts, 50 watts would be ideal right? I don't want to be pushing 100 to get a good tone!

What I still don't understand is this:
What's the difference between buying an Orange Rockerverb 50 Combo (2x12 w/ Celestion Vintage 30's) 50 watts and an Orange Rockerverb 50 Head with an Orange Celestion fitted Cabinet (2x12 w/Celestion Vintage 30's)? I see a lot of youtube videos with guys having this 1/4 stack.
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Old 11-21-2007, 02:33 AM   #30
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Re: Solid States, Tubes, Stacks, and Combos!

50 watts gets cut in half when going through this separate 12 ohms cabinet right?
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