Marshall DSL40c is it worth upgrading

bsm9981

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Hi guys .I'm I'm the market for a new amp. I have been playing for about 6 years now and finally realize I'm a Marshall guy after going thru a bunch of different amps. I had a DSL40c and sold it out of necessity, but am looking to replace it with possibly another one. I think they sound good, bit amp wondering if it's worth the upgrade tone wise to look into a Friedman Dirty Shirley mini. No one around me carries them and from what I read people say they sound similar. I know the Friedman will be better quality, but what about sound wise? Is there that much difference? How about some recommendations as well of some other amps to look into. Budget is around $1500, new or used is fine. 20-40 watts at the most. Combo or head doesn't really matter.
 

sk8rat

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If you can afford it I would say you cant go wrong with a friedman but there are a ton of amps that will get you better/similar tone than a dsl40 for cheaper than a friedman. I would say it all depends on what characteristics you liked most about the dsl40.

if your budget is $1500 you could get yourself a good amp and cab no problem.
 

EndGame00

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The DSL40 does not sound like a Dirty Shirley... Friedman DS is closely similar to a hotrodded JTM45... even in the used market, Friedman is pretty expensive...

Just wait for the Marshall Origin to come out...
 

rjwilson37

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I think the DSL40C has one of the best Crunch channels I have heard, that is definitely the best characteristic of the amp. The gain on channel 2 either Orange or Red is a bit much, but there is quick mod you can do clipping the c-19 if I am remembering correctly which tames the gain. I just hope that mod doesn't change the character of the Crunch option on channel 1. The DSL40C does have more versatility than the Dirty Shirley, but the main tone you get from the Dirty Shirley it definitely does it well and sounds great. I just won't pay that much for an amp that does not have more versatility, playing at home and not having money to burn.
 

bsm9981

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I think the DSL40C has one of the best Crunch channels I have heard, that is definitely the best characteristic of the amp. The gain on channel 2 either Orange or Red is a bit much, but there is quick mod you can do clipping the c-19 if I am remembering correctly which tames the gain. I just hope that mod doesn't change the character of the Crunch option on channel 1. The DSL40C does have more versatility than the Dirty Shirley, but the main tone you get from the Dirty Shirley it definitely does it well and sounds great. I just won't pay that much for an amp that does not have more versatility, playing at home and not having money to burn.
I really liked my DSL40 and that the 20 has come out, that is right up my alley. I had a vintage 30 in mine and it rocked!! I just wondered if the upgrade to something like a Friedman or something of that nature would be worth the extra$$$?
 

bulletproof

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I just wondered if the upgrade to something like a Friedman or something of that nature would be worth the extra$$$?
This completely depends on what you want,brother. Ya know? Too bad y’all can’t go and play the Friedman,that’s truly the only way to know.
With that being said, I have gambled more than a few times on amps and I’ve won. Much easier with amps than guitars IMHO.
 

Alderbeck

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I had a dsl401 that i bought new in 2001 it was one of the hot ones that i had to keep getting fixed, i will never forgive Marshall for that. It went last year and i got a fender but i didnt like it so took it back and got a katana 100 2X12. The katana is fantastic best amp i have played.
 

cherrysunburst00

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Friedmans are really nice (PT-20 owner here) but I'm not sure if the PT and MDS have as much gain on tap as a DSL, if you are in to uber high gain.
 

rjwilson37

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I really liked my DSL40 and that the 20 has come out, that is right up my alley. I had a vintage 30 in mine and it rocked!! I just wondered if the upgrade to something like a Friedman or something of that nature would be worth the extra$$$?
Well, you can't go wrong with the DSL40C, I had one of the white tolex ones with the stock speaker and I loved it. I sold it just before moving out here to California a couple years ago, I just didn't have room in my Car for the trip and renting just a room when I first got here. I figured I would just pick one up when I get a bigger place, I definitely like the DSL40C. With that being said though, when I go to GC in La Mesa, California, they have the Dirty Shirley in the back room, with other expensive amps, and I always plug into it when checking out guitars.

That same GC in La Mesa had a used JCM800 50w combo in the back room not too long after I first got here, it was pretty beat up and I figured I should at least give it a try. It sounded really good, such a sweet vintage raw tone with amazing perfect gain break up and thickness to it. They were asking $700 for it and when I came back to check it out again a day or two later it was gone.
 

Squints17

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I owned a dirty Shirley mini for a while it was a great amp. It was loud enough and got quiet enough for Home use as well. It had great response from the volume knob as well. It took pedals well. It didn’t feel or sound like a small el84 amp. The thing it lacked was versatility. It can’t really go clean. It’s always got hair especially with buckers. The gain pushed up sounded glorious but that was the one thing it did. I found to get more useable tones I had the gain halfway the. Would hit with an ocd or ts808 for more gain. Then back the volume down on the guitar for slightly cleaner.

I ultimately felt using it at half gain and getting the gain from pedals was underutilizing the amp.

Sold it. Went to a kemper. It sounds great, but... I miss an actual amp.


I’ve been considering going back to the ds mini, but recently checked out the new dsl20 and 100hr (the dsl40cr isn’t out yet in shops)

They were surprising very very good. I tested and liked them more than the Runt 50. The Mesa tc-50 maybe was slightly better due to full tone controls for all channels.

The dsl had 2 channels 4 modes. The clean channel was only ok, but a few of the gains sounded great through v30s. With the dual masters of the 100 and 40 should be very usable especially with all 4 modes.

I was pleasantly surprised by it and am only losing off to try the origin 50 before I pull a trigger, but I don’t think you can go wrong with the new dsls for the price.
 

bsm9981

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I owned a dirty Shirley mini for a while it was a great amp. It was loud enough and got quiet enough for Home use as well. It had great response from the volume knob as well. It took pedals well. It didn’t feel or sound like a small el84 amp. The thing it lacked was versatility. It can’t really go clean. It’s always got hair especially with buckers. The gain pushed up sounded glorious but that was the one thing it did. I found to get more useable tones I had the gain halfway the. Would hit with an ocd or ts808 for more gain. Then back the volume down on the guitar for slightly cleaner.

I ultimately felt using it at half gain and getting the gain from pedals was underutilizing the amp.

Sold it. Went to a kemper. It sounds great, but... I miss an actual amp.


I’ve been considering going back to the ds mini, but recently checked out the new dsl20 and 100hr (the dsl40cr isn’t out yet in shops)

They were surprising very very good. I tested and liked them more than the Runt 50. The Mesa tc-50 maybe was slightly better due to full tone controls for all channels.

The dsl had 2 channels 4 modes. The clean channel was only ok, but a few of the gains sounded great through v30s. With the dual masters of the 100 and 40 should be very usable especially with all 4 modes.

I was pleasantly surprised by it and am only losing off to try the origin 50 before I pull a trigger, but I don’t think you can go wrong with the new dsls for the price.
I ended up ordering a new dsl40cr, it will be here tomorrow. Hopefully it gets me where I want to be ;)
 

scrumm21

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lol so basically I gotta decide if I want to trade in my New dsl40c I got 3 months ago for the new + improved dsl40cr....:shock:
 

scrumm21

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I ended up ordering a new dsl40cr, it will be here tomorrow. Hopefully it gets me where I want to be ;)
I too am very interested in your thoughts of the 40cr after you get it !
 

frozenotter

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I'm kinda of a broken record with this, but the Marshall 2525C is the best sounding amp ever made. Right on the button for you too, financially.


Oh ...IMHO.
 




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