Bought A Jcm800 2203kk

Discussion in 'Marshall Amps' started by thunderstruck507, Jul 28, 2018.

  1. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 Well-Known Member

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    Hello all,

    My TSL100 has been on the fritz since July 4th and getting a replacement board has been impossible. While parts are coming I began thinking about getting a JVM. I got a bonus at work that coupled with the value of my repaired TSL would pay for one so I began looking.

    Instead I found a 2203KK on Reverb and not expecting the offer to be accepted I offered $1200 shipped for it as I've always wanted to try an 800 since that's the tone I really want from an amp (just with some more gain). Given how rarely these are available I think it was a steal at the price I paid.

    I don't care for Slayer but do think Kerry King has great tone and this amp seemed like it should be the exact tone I want plus there is the legend of the 800's ballsy sound that supposedly modern Marshall's don't replicate even if they get the tone close.

    It should arrive Tuesday. Is there anything in particular I should examine or look/listen for with this or any typical 800 reissue that could be of concern?

    Anyone have opinions on this head and/or how it should compare to the TSL or a JVM as far as a good Marshall metal tone (ala Iced Earth, Judas Priest, Power Trip, etc)? I love the tones I got from my TSL but the one it never could do proper was that snarl/growl in the mids I really crave. Even tried a 10 band EQ but it just wouldn't get that sound.

    I have a Black Arts Toneworks Black Forrest overdrive I can hit the front with if I don't enjoy the "Beast mode" and find the stock 2203 lacking in gain.
     
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  2. royslead

    royslead Well-Known Member

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    That should be a killer amp, congrat's!
     
  3. Squidhunter

    Squidhunter Active Member

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    Its a home run for what your looking for!!!
     
  4. marshallmellowed

    marshallmellowed Well-Known Member

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    Hope you don't need an FX loop, it doesn't have one.
     
  5. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 Well-Known Member

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    I have a carbon copy delay and an earthquaker afterneath but I don't use them much. Honestly the tone suck/volume drop from the TSL's shit loop is part of the reason I rarely use them.
     
  6. Trelwheen

    Trelwheen Well-Known Member

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    Congrats, a hotrodded 2203 is about as good as it gets!
     
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  7. Chris-in-LA

    Chris-in-LA Well-Known Member

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    Watch out for the mids on JCM800’s, the mid control acts more like treble, turn it up and you might find that your amp sounds fizzy. Good luck with your new amp.
     
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  8. Deep Purple fan

    Deep Purple fan Well-Known Member

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    The loop on my 2203X sucked. I took it to my tech to get fixed and he said it ain’t broken. Compared to my Engl, Carvins and Mesa.....way off. The 2210 and 4205 were worse. So in 800 world you’re not missing anything. Flip side, the fx on Astoria and JVM are excellent and it does add to your sone,
     
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  9. chiliphil1

    chiliphil1 Well-Known Member

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    Check the bias, the one that I had would not bias properly. Supposedly there is a resistor in there that can fail and cause that but I never got it fixed, I just returned it to GC. I enjoyed the noise gate but didn't like the beast switch, unfortunately the noise gate only works when using the beast switch. I found that it was too fizzy for my taste and when compared to a 2203x it lacked the "balls" that the 800 is known for. That all could have been because something wasn't right on mine but either way, it turned me off of buying another KK. My least favorite thing is that the beast cannot be engaged with a footswitch, I didn't like it anyway so, it wasn't too big of a thing but I cannot understand why they did not make that switchable, either way, I don't mean to turn you off on the amp, hopefully yours works out and you enjoy it. Congrats.
     
  10. marshallmellowed

    marshallmellowed Well-Known Member

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    Not sure why your's "sucked". I had a JVM410H, and the loop on my 2203x sounds just as good as the JVM loop (with JVM at 100% mix). I also have a JTM45, which I installed a Metro loop in, which is supposed to be an excellent loop, and it sounds about the same as the loop on my 2203x.
     
  11. Deep Purple fan

    Deep Purple fan Well-Known Member

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    Mine had noise. Not a lot but I could hear it. Minor but not at all transparent. The other 800s.....4212 and 2210....absolute tone suckers. The 2203X was not nearly as bad but I had an issue with it. I took the 2203X in to my tech and asked him to find the problem. No luck. I’ve had three JVMs...the 410HJS I have now plus the 410 and 210 and all three have excellent fx. I’m very picky. I greatly prefer my modulation effects in the loop rather than out front. None of the amps I use now have suspect fx loops.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2018
  12. marshallmellowed

    marshallmellowed Well-Known Member

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    Hmm, I'm very picky also. I'm guessing your 2203x may have had an issue, even if your tech didn't find any. Oddly enough, my HJS loop had an issue, which I could never isolate. It had a very low level hum I could never get rid of, not much, but it was there. Even with a good patch cable going straight from the send to the return, I could hear it when I engaged the loop with my ear to the speaker (yes, it was that low).
     
  13. Deep Purple fan

    Deep Purple fan Well-Known Member

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    That’s kind of what I had. I wouldn’t exactly call it a hum. It was closer to very subtle but noticeable distortion in the effect.
     
  14. Rockcity

    Rockcity Active Member

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    Congrats! And play it without any OD. Use your amp EQ and vol knob for desired tone. Believe me, those are made to serve you well and they don't need processors in front
     
  15. MonstersOfTheMidway

    MonstersOfTheMidway Well-Known Member

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    @OP:
    I liked the JCM800 2203KK I used several years ago. To me, the 2203KK was in the tradition of very stripped down to the bare essentials kind of amp: no effects loop, no built-in reverb, no channel switching, etc. The gate worked well, but as mentioned above, it's only active in the Beast mode circuit. Still, it produces a great over drive/distorted/dirt tone that stays nice and tight on the low end with a good balance of mids and high. Sure, you can get other tones from this amp, but it will require repositioning the controls, which is usually not a problem between songs, but might be a problem if mid-song.

    It's fair to say that this amp isn't for everyone, but if you're looking for a certain quality tone that you can't find elsewhere, the 2203KK might be the one.
     
  16. Harlequin tusk

    Harlequin tusk Well-Known Member

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    I have both amps, the KK800 is it's own thing, very good for Metal at volume, no loop, I don't really like the Beast mode too much, can't roll off the volume to get a cleaner tone when the Beast is engaged,but it does sounds good when very loud. KK is excellent for what it's designed for. Tsl is much more versatile but mine doesn't have the "punch" the KK has, nor in my case the sheer volume of the KK . None of the channels on the TSL sound like the KK does at volume.

    If you need effects and different tones get the TSL, if you need "that Crunch" get the KK, KK will hold it's value better than the TSL.

    Have fun!
     
  17. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 Well-Known Member

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    I have the TSL too, good amp for sure.

    After some time with the KK I'm in love though. Tons more balls and much smoother more rounded tones. It sounds better at lower volumes than the TSL too which gets very fizzy and shrill at low volume.

    I wish the Beast mode had a footswitch, I may try to add one...that would make this amp nearly perfect.

    I wasn't completely blown away at first which shows how well the TSL holds its own, but once I got a chance to turn the KK up to about 4 it was mind blowing how good it sounded.

    It appears my KK still has the factory tubes so if I for sure keep it then down the road I'd like to get some Gold Lion power tubes for it.
     
  18. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    Start the reactor... Free Mars!
    Turn it up to at least 7. That's where the tone beguines.
     
  19. thunderstruck507

    thunderstruck507 Well-Known Member

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    I tried cranking it last night. Volume and tone both seemed to level out around 5-6 and anything over that began to sound worse. Could be too much for a single cab?

    Does anyone know what the factory Marshall tubes are in these? I searched on google and can't seem to find who makes them. Was just curious before I started rolling preamp tubes.

    I have a Sovtec, some ElectroHarmonix, a couple JJs, and a Tung Sol but I think it's weak or just didn't sound good in my DSL401 (never tried it in my TSL which REALLY liked the Sovtec in v1)
     
  20. chiliphil1

    chiliphil1 Well-Known Member

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    That's been my experience with the 2203 amps. The "tone" comes in at 5-6 and after that it just adds saturation which may or may not be to your liking. The sweetspoot on the 2203x was about 7 and the KK was less, especially with the beast since it add's so much gain anyway.
     

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