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Discussion in 'New Member Intros' started by Czar, Jan 6, 2017.
... I like this thread !
Amplifiers, after lots and lots of online research, YouTube etc, with the understanding I do want a full rich clean warm tone, with no intention of ever moving the amplifier once I get it home, I went armed with my shortlist, Fender Blues Delux 40 watt (tweed version) 68 twin reverb 85 watt, 68 custom twin reverb 85 watt, Hot Rod Deville 111 410 combo 60 watt and the Fender George Benson signature twin reverb 85 watt.
I've not heard demonstrations of all the above, hopefully by the end of the week I will have heard them all, I probably will have to hear some again, it would be much easier if all my shortlist of amplifiers were under one roof, despite this fact, I have met very friendly helpful patient staff, willing to answer what to them may seem very basic questions, but to me, a very basic beginner, page 1 trying to get to grips on just what is what, and what I like, has been and is a very steep learning curve.
All in all I think I'm going to find it difficult to pick a clear winner from my shortlist, but a winner I must pick, I'm not in a hurry, I want to get this right, or best I can to suit my ears.
Looks like you're doing it right!
One thought: if you are only playing at home, anything above 20W is pure overkill. Even my 40W Vibroverb is still rather clean when my ears are already hurting. Maybe you also want to put a Princeton reverb on your shortlist.
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Unless you have a dedicated playing space and the ability to crank it at home, it seems that you are getting more wattage than you need - or can really use. Seriously consider something in the 5w-15w range (for tube/valve amps). I have a 5/15/25w Mesa amp and when I play with a full band and drummer, the 5w works fine.
If you are committed to Fender, then Floo makes a good suggestion re Princeton, also look into the Pro Junior.
For your budget, you have lots of options.
Czar, there are many of us "old dogs" learning new tricks all the time. Welcome to a whole new beautiful world.
Thank you Henry for your advice, a few people including yourself have suggested I may well be going overkill with the wattage, given that I will never ever gig, I can't play a single note yet, LOL, that said, the difference between a single, twin and in the case of the Deville 410 a quad set of speakers, to me and my ears I much prefer the fuller sound of the twin and quad speakers to the single.
On my shortlist I have the Fender Blues Deluxe, and yes I'm aware it's a single 12" speaker, the only reason it's on my list is purely for its aesthetics.
I guess I'm lucky on a few levels, I live alone, have no neighbours, and I have the choice to dedicate a room, as I've listened to the amplifiers on my short list, not all yet, for me and my ears, it's the ability of the amplifiers to produce a gorgeous full bodied sound at low to mid volume, rather than, the term used, crank it LOUD, to distortion.
From what I've heard, me and my ears, so far, the lesser wattage single speaker amplifiers can't deliver the same full bodied clean smooth tone of the twin and quad speaker amplifiers running more wattage, that's the reason for my shortlist choice, hope this makes sense, as this may not be correct, yet from my novice point of view and listening pleasure, that's how I hear it.
Don't underestimate the little Fender Champ 600/Gretsch 5222 tube amps. They are the same amp with different badges. I have one that has been upgraded, (Kits available on Reverb). The sound is great , tone is awesome and it is compact and likely all you will need for a bedroom or coffee shop. It does lack reverb, so you may want a Topanga or Spring King. I will admit though, my next amp will someday be a Tweed Blues Deluxe.
Czar, another benefit of learning to play guitar is it improves your appreciation of music. Connections will be made which may also help with your condition.
Welcome to gretsch-talk and the wonderful world of guitar playing. This is something that you can do at any age. I would recommend an inexpensive, well constructed acoustic guitar to go along with your beautiful Gretsch and amplifier.
Amplifier update, I still haven't heard demonstrations of all the amplifiers on my shortlist, that said, today's amplifier demonstration followed by my quisitive questioning, was overheard by an elderly gentleman who turned out not only to be very knowledgeable but a fantastic guitarist.
What followed was an impromptu solo gig by the elderly gentleman with a twist, after listening to what I was looking for in an amplifier, he asked me two questions.
Do I have the room for what he was about to suggest: I think so, yes.
Do I have any neighbours: No
The elderly gentleman was obviously very well known to the store, he asked the assistant to get him an A B box, the look on the store assistants face told me she knew exactly what was about to commence, I had no idea, the two of them set to work linking two amplifiers together, a 65 deluxe twin and a 68 twin reverb, I was asked which guitar I would like to hear demonstrated, obviously the Gretsch 5420 was suggested and chosen.
What happened next was mind blowing to my ears, and everyone in the store, a true stereo full bodied clean clear tone with enough bass punch to more than satisfy me, simply beautiful, both amplifiers were set up to offer as near identical individual tones, the volume level was increased until the sweet spot was found, which was loud, between 4-6 on the volume control.
So following the impromptu solo gig, that was it, I need stereo in my life of guitar playing, so whichever amplifier I decide is the one, I will be placing my order for two amplifiers, the store assistant said, she would like to see my eventual set up, so I have thrown open my invitation, for her to come play the guitar and help me in finding the best tone set up for my home.
How a complete basic beginner novice quickly gets bitten by the Gretsch bug, I had decided I wanted and still do, the Electromatic hollow body G5420T single cut, whilst the colour choice is quite limited, after viewing in person the Aspen Green, Fairlane Blue and the Orange stain, I have decided the Orange stain is the one colour from the three colours available I have settled upon.
Furthermore, every time I view these guitars in person, my eyes are always drawn toward the Electromatic G5422TG hollow body double cut in Walnut stain with Gold hardware, to my eyes this guitar looks far more than its price tag suggests.
As I will be 50 this year, I've decided to treat myself, the Eloctromatic G5420T hollow body single cut in Orange stain will be the one I will learn to play on a daily basis, whilst the Electromatic G5422TG hollow body double cut in Walnut stain with the Gold hardware, will be on display giving me a visual drive, that one day when I finally get to grips with the basics, maybe even my first tune, I can reward myself with trying to replicate what I've learnt, and transfer this to the Electromatic G5422TG hollow body double cut in Walnut stain with Gold hardware, fingers crossed.