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<  Gear Talk  ~  ENGL powerball II the best amp for metal?

ogdeathgrind
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 3:26 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 16 Oct 2008 Posts: 2337 Location: http://ogdg.proboards.com
\m/echanic wrote:
There is much more involved in getting the tone you want than just throwing cash at an expensive amp IMHO. Of course you can't squeeze great tone out of a shitty amp, that's a given, but once you are at the level of Mesa, ENGL, Soldano, etc. each amp has the potential for great tone; although you may have to work at it to get the tone you want.

Tubes are a HUGE part of your tone (yes tubes, no solid-state for me). For example, the difference between a 6L6 and an KT77 is subtle, but there is a difference. IMHO it's worth investigating and trying a few different types to find the ones that best suit your taste.

The cab is equally important; speakers, design, wood type all contribute to your tone. Definitely worth trying out a few (with your amp) before buying one. Also, you need to noodle with the EQ and not just set Bass 8, Mid 0, Treble 10. Surprised

I found a ton of helpful info on the Mesa forum (such as using an OD in front to slam the preamp to alleviate boom and mud, and not using the EQ loop if at all possible) and would recommend doing some investigation before and after a amp purchase.

One thing I find very annoying is trying to get a good recorded representation of my tone. I suck at it, and cannot wait to get into a pro studio; or at least have help from someone who knows WTF they are doing. I hope somebody finds all of this yammering helpful. Very Happy


Ya I generally agree with you about amps, it's a subjective after a while and good sounds start in your mind/fingers.

In terms of recording it comes down to your preamp and mic(s) used. A quality preamp is where you want to start with a quality recording. Try the API 512c (or 3124 for the 4 channel version) http://www.apiaudio.com/512c.html . It is considered to be one of the punchiest and best sounding preamps, and it can be used for plenty of applications.

In terms of mics, obviously the 57 is a standard, but if you want to get a unique sound you might want to try out a bunch of different mics to use in combination with the 57 (placed almost touching the best sounding speaker on a 45 degree angle). And before recording, sit in front of your cab and adjust the settings so that you get the perfect tone, a lot of people make the mistake of tuning their settings while standing away from the speaker. If you put your ears right near the cab and also monitor it with headphones you'll hear if you're using too much gain or too much bass for example.
Try using multiple 57's up close (on various angles etc) and a few u67's or u87s a few feet away.

I've also read a million times on various boards that it's a good idea to use a combination of amp sounds. A lot of people use a rectifier w/ a 5150 and a jcm800 to grab different characteristics. If you just use the same amp for the entire recording it'll tend to sound flat or boring after a while.
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tormentinfire
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 3:32 pm Reply with quote
Resident troll Joined: 08 Feb 2007 Posts: 5005 Location: East Germany
Listen to him, all this information is backed up by years of not actually trying any of what he's read.
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ogdeathgrind
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 3:50 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 16 Oct 2008 Posts: 2337 Location: http://ogdg.proboards.com
if you don't believe me browse audiophile boards and metal tone articles, or just try them yourself.
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Grey Sublime Archon
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 5:02 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 01 Oct 2008 Posts: 1083 Location: On the block
yo, bro-g, you do realize that TIF was calling you out on only ever reading shit on the Internet and not doing anything in practice? I'm constantly amazed at how you consistently make yourself look further retarded.
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ogdeathgrind
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 5:24 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 16 Oct 2008 Posts: 2337 Location: http://ogdg.proboards.com
ya and I answered it. Do I need to produce gold records to prove that I know a thing or two about recording? Why don't you enlighten us if you're so knowledgeable on the subject? Which preamps and mics are best suited/most ideal for metal guitar sounds?
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tormentinfire
Posted: Thu May 06, 2010 5:31 pm Reply with quote
Resident troll Joined: 08 Feb 2007 Posts: 5005 Location: East Germany
You need actual experience in the field to give any tangible advice on the subject. This is something completely evident to just about anyone. I guaran-fucking-tee that if someone gave you an Avalon pre-amp or put you in front of a Neve desk, you wouldn't be able to produce anything worth a shit because your only skill is playing "Polly want a cracker?".
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Grey Sublime Archon
Posted: Fri May 07, 2010 10:25 am Reply with quote
Joined: 01 Oct 2008 Posts: 1083 Location: On the block
ogdeathgrind wrote:
ya and I answered it. Do I need to produce gold records to prove that I know a thing or two about recording?


No, that's retarded and not at all what I suggested. Gold records are based on sales. What you do need to do to prove your knowledge is produce something that reflects it, apply the knowledge and demonstrate that you know what you say you know. It's why schools do tests and not just give marks for attendance.

ogdeathgrind wrote:
Why don't you enlighten us if you're so knowledgeable on the subject? Which preamps and mics are best suited/most ideal for metal guitar sounds?


Again your assertions are poor. Have I ever claimed to know shit about preamps or mics? I know very little, and because my knowledge is incomplete I choose not to talk about it. You however do choose to talk about shit you don't understand and simply parrot the information presented on gear websites. You're not reading, comprehending, and then changing your own knowledge base and forming your own opinions, you're just reading and saying back what you read.
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kamanda
Posted: Fri May 07, 2010 7:21 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Oct 2008 Posts: 519
\m/echanic wrote:
There is much more involved in getting the tone you want than just throwing cash at an expensive amp IMHO. Of course you can't squeeze great tone out of a shitty amp, that's a given, but once you are at the level of Mesa, ENGL, Soldano, etc. each amp has the potential for great tone; although you may have to work at it to get the tone you want.

Tubes are a HUGE part of your tone (yes tubes, no solid-state for me). For example, the difference between a 6L6 and an KT77 is subtle, but there is a difference. IMHO it's worth investigating and trying a few different types to find the ones that best suit your taste.

The cab is equally important; speakers, design, wood type all contribute to your tone. Definitely worth trying out a few (with your amp) before buying one. Also, you need to noodle with the EQ and not just set Bass 8, Mid 0, Treble 10. Surprised

I found a ton of helpful info on the Mesa forum (such as using an OD in front to slam the preamp to alleviate boom and mud, and not using the EQ loop if at all possible) and would recommend doing some investigation before and after a amp purchase.

One thing I find very annoying is trying to get a good recorded representation of my tone. I suck at it, and cannot wait to get into a pro studio; or at least have help from someone who knows WTF they are doing. I hope somebody finds all of this yammering helpful. Very Happy


Useful post. Just want to add a few things:

-first paragraph, bang on bro!

-I noticed quite a difference between KT77 and 6l6 (6L6 and 5881's I found to be closer), also remember that changing tubes is more than just type. All brands and models sound different too, also depends on how its biased, broken in etc. (I'm sure you know this, just adding in for the others!)

-Using the EFFECTS loop (not EQ loop) isn't necessarily a bad thing, some effect sound better (depending on tastes) or clearer (ex. delay pedal) being in the loop. but yes using it vs. not using it does create a difference...I know guys that run a 1ft cable from send to return just cause they like what it gives them (I used to do this on my old amp actually...before I discovered delay lol). So try both!

-OD pedals DO slam the preamp harder BUTTTT the majority of the change in sound comes from the push it gives the POWER tubes. This is why OD pedals don't have the same vibe in a valvestate (which I used to own, hated my OD's...beautiful in my 800!).

-Forums are great for some good advice, i recommend the marshallampforum and the seymourduncan forum as well (for more than just those 2 companies!)

-Recording: yes, getting the "same" tone you hear on record is fucking hard. I could go on for days about this!!! POD's are great (I use a POD 2.0 for all my demos) but they are too sterile sounding to use on a recording I would distribute. Once again IMO.


Great post though man, glad there's some constructiveness in this!
---


I'm just gunna comment on this post since it's actually helpful.

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\m/echanic
Posted: Wed May 12, 2010 3:18 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 09 Dec 2008 Posts: 110
kamanda wrote:

-OD pedals DO slam the preamp harder BUTTTT the majority of the change in sound comes from the push it gives the POWER tubes. This is why OD pedals don't have the same vibe in a valvestate (which I used to own, hated my OD's...beautiful in my 800!).

Regarding the OD pedal, I have an older 2 channel Mesa Dual and simply have to use one. In my case the amp turns to mush if I run the gain above 2 0'clock. Tons of mud and boom. Not cool. BUT, with the OD I get the same amount of gain with the amp's gain at noon, and a much tighter tone overall. I use a Maxon OD808 with the gain off, tone near noon, and the level on full. I'd highly recommend this approach to anyone with an old Mesa Dual. Very Happy

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kamanda
Posted: Wed May 12, 2010 4:29 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 11 Oct 2008 Posts: 519
Good call. I run my TS808 very similar in front of my JCM800.

A great approach to setting the OD when you want your amp to keep its "voice" as much as possible, and not be too coloured by the OD.

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tormentinfire
Posted: Wed May 12, 2010 8:12 pm Reply with quote
Resident troll Joined: 08 Feb 2007 Posts: 5005 Location: East Germany
I actually recently found out myself that tubescreamers and the like really only sound good driving a tube amp - always wondered why people liked that pedal. Makes me consider buying a little 15w fender tube amp or something.
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Rise_of_the_wicked
Posted: Wed May 12, 2010 10:19 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 10 Feb 2007 Posts: 3168 Location: On me ship, harr!
I can 'T tell if you'Re serious or not Neutral honestly.

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tormentinfire
Posted: Thu May 13, 2010 6:33 am Reply with quote
Resident troll Joined: 08 Feb 2007 Posts: 5005 Location: East Germany
Hah, why? (I am)
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Rise_of_the_wicked
Posted: Thu May 13, 2010 8:09 am Reply with quote
Joined: 10 Feb 2007 Posts: 3168 Location: On me ship, harr!
well, usually people who want the squeeze all the juice out of tubes end up picking something like 100W, just wasn'T expecting the 15w thing there

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tormentinfire
Posted: Thu May 13, 2010 10:31 am Reply with quote
Resident troll Joined: 08 Feb 2007 Posts: 5005 Location: East Germany
Well, tubes sound best when pushed hard and that's more feasible with a smaller amp, unless you get one of those power attenuators. For jamming at home, 100w is overkill (and more $$$). Wattage only affects the volume, not how hard you can push the tubes.
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