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Could someone recommend me a small valve amp please?


AndyK

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I've done my back in lifting my EVH 5150 iii 50W 2x12 combo. At 84lbs it is just too heavy. I'm sad, because it is probably the best amp I have ever had - sounds gorgeous, loads of headroom. But realistically, I need something lighter. I'm thinking about maybe getting the head and 2x12 cab separately, but whilst I am considering my options, I might as well look around. I want an amp loud enough for small gigs, with at least 2 channels, or enough headroom to take a boost pedal for solos. My bandmate has a 20W Mesa, which is hellishly loud, but also very expensive!

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Know exactly where you are coming from - did my back in lifting my Twin some years ago.

Very much liking my 1x12 red-knob Fender Super 60 these days.

Thought I'd never go for a single speaker combo but it's more than enough for wherever I play now.

There's a lot out there, good luck!

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I played a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe 1 x 12 for several years with pedals, plenty of headroom on the clean side, and it can get nasty all by itself on the boost side if you need that. They're not too expensive and much lighter than a 2 x 12. I bought it as a practice amp cause I didn't want to lug around my Twin Reverb. It sounded so good I just gigged with it and left the Twin home.

 

Also that Marshall DSL 40CST which is a 40/20 Watt and 1 x 12 looked like a lot of amplifier for $700 at Sweetwater, if you go for Marshall tones.

 

You could also look at the Blackstar line, but they might not have the headroom your looking for - they tend to emphasize the boost/grit/distortion sounds more so than the clean side. But they make a lot of smaller/lighter powerful amps.

 

One other thought. Since you like the sound you get from the EVH so much, could you put casters on the bottom of it and roll it? You still have to get it in and out of the van/car, but might be worth a shot.

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Can't help you with the two channel thing - I'm a vintage type guy - but there are lots of good giggable low watt tube amps... here's what I've used...

 

I generally take a Fender Princeton. Mine are old - 68 and 69 but they have never let me down and they take pedals really well for solos etc. Classic Fender sound - great for twangy stuff.

 

If I need a little more oooph, I'll take the old Deluxe Reverb. Similar in size but with a bit more power and dispersion with the 12" speaker.

 

If I don't want it to sound Fender(y) - like say a heavier classic rock gig, I'll take my 18 watt Marshall head. May be the perfect mid-size amp to me. I have both 2-12 and 4-10 cabs I can use - neither are too heavy. I've even used it with a 1-10 in a pinch.

 

I've also used the Orange Tiny Terror head - nice small size and can mate with many different cabinet options. Sounds like this might fit your needs nicely. A bit more high gain - but can be dialed back to accommodate pedals.

 

A lot depends on the sounds you need to cover I think.

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If it's the best amp you've ever owned, what about making or purchasing a head cabinet and speaker cabinet?

 

Reason I ask is because I think you like some specific things about the amp that to me sorta imply that you do not actually want a small valve amp.

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I would recommend the Blackstar HT 60 Soloist. 2 channels plus boost and the ISF circuit gives you a ton of tone flexibility. Great cleans and excellent gain as well. I really like the boost and also like how it takes my pedals. It is a 1x12 and you can add an extension to it. I have one and love it.

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I would recommend the Blackstar HT 60 Soloist. 2 channels plus boost and the ISF circuit gives you a ton of tone flexibility. Great cleans and excellent gain as well. I really like the boost and also like how it takes my pedals. It is a 1x12 and you can add an extension to it. I have one and love it.

 

I'd do a little bit of homework on these first - I have some family members who've used them and they have not always proved reliable (i.e. trips to the workshop). Certainly wouldn't rule them out but I'd do some research to make sure that that's not a common thing.

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I'd do a little bit of homework on these first - I have some family members who've used them and they have not always proved reliable (i.e. trips to the workshop). Certainly wouldn't rule them out but I'd do some research to make sure that that's not a common thing.

 

I had my Blackstar head shipped to me from a third party who used styrofoam popcorn and plastic bags as padding. When it arrived, the box was beat to junk. I thought the amp was going to have problems. Amazingly, the amp works fine and I've never had any problems with it. I'd buy another. I'm thinking of finding the Balckstar HT-5 Metal amp with reverb...you can find all kind of reviews for this amp on YouTube. I like it!

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I had my Blackstar head shipped to me from a third party who used styrofoam popcorn and plastic bags as padding. When it arrived, the box was beat to junk. I thought the amp was going to have problems. Amazingly, the amp works fine and I've never had any problems with it. I'd buy another. I'm thinking of finding the Balckstar HT-5 Metal amp with reverb...you can find all kind of reviews for this amp on YouTube. I like it!

 

Good-o. I ain't dissing 'em. Here's one of my nephews mucking round on a 60 soloist back when he was at high school - they get some very cool sounds.

 

I have no idea if they are widely prone to issues, but seemed fair to mention it as something to look out for among other considerations.

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I guess it depends on the definition of "small". I suppose I actually mean "lighter than 84lbs". :)

 

As regards features what I actually said was: "2 channels, OR enough headroom to take a boost pedal for solos".

 

I've just tried the Marshall 2525 combo - with a view to getting the 2525H and 2x12 silver cab. On paper, it has my requirements: it's small, with 2 channels. The cleaner channel dirties up and has a push/pull knob to make it even crunchier - that is how I would set it. [thumbup]

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A couple of 2 channel Fender's, with less bulk and weight, than a Twin Reverb, Deluxe Reverb (22 watts), Vibrolux (40 watts, w/2X10's)!

The recent '68 (silver face) reissue versions have Reverb in both channels, and a Bassman Tone stack, to break up, a bit earlier, if you

want. All take pedals well, IMHO.

 

Then there's always Vox AC-15 (Single 12), AC-15 Twin (2X12's) and AC-30 (2X12's), also.

 

So, with those, and what's already been mentioned, there are LOTS of choices. [thumbup]

 

 

CB

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