Mesa Triple Crown!!! New Amp Month and Mini Review

ErictheRed

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I sold the TC-50 yesterday, even made a profit from when I bought it (used but mint) almost two and a half years ago. I'm strangely a little sad, but I still have the TC-100! It's funny, but those extra 11 or 12 pounds make it much less of a grab-and-go type of amp. I can easily grab the 35 pound TC-50 with one hand from a shelf or out of the truck, but this needs two hands for those awkward angles. Pretty small complaint, though.

The TC-100 does have a fan that you hear on startup. It's quiet enough that I don't hear it when I play at moderately low volumes at home, but I might spend $20 on a quieter fan, like for a high end PC. I'll look into that.

All in all I think I did good here, and I'll be stoked to play it with the band next week! I wonder if anyone will notice a difference if I don't say anything? The other guitar player might be a little annoyed at me getting a 100 W amp since he plays through a Hot Rod Deluxe (which is sufficient for our needs), but oh well! I'm looking forward to the slightly fuller low end and extra headroom. The low end of the TC-50 was my only minor complaint about that amp, which a lot of people fix with an EQ pedal in the loop.
 

ErictheRed

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Played the TC-100 at rehearsal last night and it sounded fantastic! It was one of those good rehearsals where the whole band sounded good, so I can't say that it sounded any better than the TC-50 did. I had it on the 100W setting on all channels the whole time, and it was very usable. In fact I dialed the gain down slightly lower than I've done in the past, and I might have even been playing at a slightly quieter volume than usual, and it worked out very well.

However, I'm almost completely insane when it comes to gear. For no real reason I kind of regretted selling my TC-50 head, and noticed Monday that someone actually listed a mint condition (mine was essentially mint also) TC-50 head for a little less than I'd sold mine for! So I also picked up ANOTHER TC-50 head yesterday before practice; I'm back to having both TC-100 and TC-50 heads.

I do like how much lighter the TC-50 is, as loading in and out of the truck is much easier that way. I also like that there is no fan noise, which is only apparent at low volumes at home (I couldn't hear it AT ALL last night at rehearsal, even when we weren't playing). So I dunno, maybe I'll keep both for a while or eventually decide to keep the TC-50. I just love this amp I guess, it's really grown on me more and more over the past 2+ years as I realize how flexible it is. Pristine warm cleans to mild overdrive to extremely punchy crunch to scooped (or not scooped, or even fuzzy) high gain, it does it all very well.
 
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redking

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Played the TC-100 at rehearsal last night and it sounded fantastic! It was one of those good rehearsals where the whole band sounded good, so I can't say that it sounded any better than the TC-50 did. I had it on the 100W setting on all channels the whole time, and it was very usable. In fact I dialed the gain down slightly lower than I've done in the past, and I might have even been playing at a slightly quieter volume than usual, and it worked out very well.

However, I'm almost completely insane when it comes to gear. For no real reason I kind of regretted selling my TC-50 head, and noticed Monday that someone actually listed a mint condition (mine was essentially mint also) TC-50 head for $250 less than I'd sold mine for! So I also picked up ANOTHER TC-50 head yesterday before practice; I'm back to having both TC-100 and TC-50 heads, with just another $250 in my pocket.

I do like how much lighter the TC-50 is, as loading in and out of the truck is much easier that way. I also like that there is no fan noise, which is only apparent at low volumes at home (I couldn't hear it AT ALL last night at rehearsal, even when we weren't playing). So I dunno, maybe I'll keep both for a while or eventually decide to keep the TC-50. I just love this amp I guess, it's really grown on me more and more over the past 2+ years as I realize how flexible it is. Pristine warm cleans to mild overdrive to extremely punchy crunch to scooped (or not scooped, or even fuzzy) high gain, it does it all very well.
I think we may be related somehow. :laugh2:
 

gtimach1

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I bought this custom finish TC-50 a few months ago and am very impressed. Paired it with two California Tweed 1x12 cabs. I left the Jensen Blackbird in one and put a Mesa V30 in the other. I liked it so much, that I ended up getting rid of the California Tweed Head that I had.
D48E5289-3BDD-48C0-92FF-C266255C3C8F.jpeg
 

screamingdaisy

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Played the TC-100 at rehearsal last night and it sounded fantastic! It was one of those good rehearsals where the whole band sounded good, so I can't say that it sounded any better than the TC-50 did. I had it on the 100W setting on all channels the whole time, and it was very usable. In fact I dialed the gain down slightly lower than I've done in the past, and I might have even been playing at a slightly quieter volume than usual, and it worked out very well.

However, I'm almost completely insane when it comes to gear. For no real reason I kind of regretted selling my TC-50 head, and noticed Monday that someone actually listed a mint condition (mine was essentially mint also) TC-50 head for $250 less than I'd sold mine for! So I also picked up ANOTHER TC-50 head yesterday before practice; I'm back to having both TC-100 and TC-50 heads, with just another $250 in my pocket.

I do like how much lighter the TC-50 is, as loading in and out of the truck is much easier that way. I also like that there is no fan noise, which is only apparent at low volumes at home (I couldn't hear it AT ALL last night at rehearsal, even when we weren't playing). So I dunno, maybe I'll keep both for a while or eventually decide to keep the TC-50. I just love this amp I guess, it's really grown on me more and more over the past 2+ years as I realize how flexible it is. Pristine warm cleans to mild overdrive to extremely punchy crunch to scooped (or not scooped, or even fuzzy) high gain, it does it all very well.
Have you tried 6V6s in the 50?

My rig for the last few years was one Tc-50 w/ EL34 and the other with 6V6. I like how they filled in for each other. The EL34s brought the mids while the 6V6 brought the highs and lows and a lower saturation point. 6v6s can get a bit muddy/spongy when you drive them hard, which was compensated for by the EL34s holding the overall sound together.
 

ErictheRed

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I bought this custom finish TC-50 a few months ago and am very impressed. Paired it with two California Tweed 1x12 cabs. I left the Jensen Blackbird in one and put a Mesa V30 in the other. I liked it so much, that I ended up getting rid of the California Tweed Head that I had. View attachment 549694
Looks great! This amp has made me get rid of quite a few good ones: a Blackface Fender Bassman, two Suhr Badgers, etc. The one amp that I kind of regret was a 1976 Hiwatt Custom 50, but I don't regret it all that much, honestly.

The only other amp that I have right now is a 1965 Fender Pro Reverb which I'll most likely keep forever.
 

ErictheRed

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Have you tried 6V6s in the 50?

My rig for the last few years was one Tc-50 w/ EL34 and the other with 6V6. I like how they filled in for each other. The EL34s brought the mids while the 6V6 brought the highs and lows and a lower saturation point. 6v6s can get a bit muddy/spongy when you drive them hard, which was compensated for by the EL34s holding the overall sound together.
I have not, only 6L6s. I prefer EL34s to 6L6s in this amp, but I haven't tried 6V6s yet and probably should. Unfortunately while I have extra 6L6s, EL34s, and EL84s laying around, I don't have any 6V6s to try. How's the volume then? I assume that it'd be about as loud as a Deluxe Reverb.
 

screamingdaisy

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I have not, only 6L6s. I prefer EL34s to 6L6s in this amp, but I haven't tried 6V6s yet and probably should. Unfortunately while I have extra 6L6s, EL34s, and EL84s laying around, I don't have any 6V6s to try. How's the volume then? I assume that it'd be about as loud as a Deluxe Reverb.
It looses a lot of headroom. Might be lower than a Deluxe because it can feed more bass, so it runs out of gas earlier. For me it was a cool contrast as I could blend both the 6v6 dying amp sound with a stiffer EL34 sound.

I never really liked 6L6s with the TC-50. They do make it sound more “Mesa” as it has more of the Rectifier kind of vibe, but that’s not the sound I bought the TC for.
 

gtimach1

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The TC-50 sounds so good with the EL34s that I am not sure I will try the other options…even though I have them available. I do have a Fillmore 50 and Hot Rod Deluxe with 6L6s, so it is unlikely I will try those.
 
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ErictheRed

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I put 6L6s in the new TC-50 that I picked up to replace my other one, played a few chords, and holy crap! It sounded amazing! Much more "Mesa" sounding, if you know what I mean. However I took that amp to our last rehearsal a few days ago instead of the TC-100, and I didn't like it nearly as much in the band mix. The EL34s are the opposite: better with the band than at home. So yeah for my ears and tastes, I'm going to stick to EL34s.

I may try 6V6s, but I don't have any laying around.

By the way, anyone know the specs on the TC-100 fan? I might replace mine with a completely silent one from the PC industry. Not that it's any problem outside of quiet playing at home, but it's mildly annoying to me. I could just open up the amp and take a look at it, but I'm curious if anyone knows of a drop-in replacement silent fan offhand.
 

ErictheRed

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In case anyone is interested or finds this with Google, I opened the Mesa Triple Crown TC-100 and found the fan part number, then found the manufacturer specs. The stock fan is made by Pelonis, C6025L12BPLP1b -7.

If you want a quieter (9 dBA less claimed) drop-in replacement, the Noctua NF-A6x25 FLX should work. I ordered one that will arrive in a week or so for $15.

It looks difficult to get to the fan connector, so I'm planning on just cutting the wires by the old fan and crimping a new connector to the end to attach the new fan to. I'll post how it works out when I can.
 
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