Evh 5150iii

Discussion in 'Other Amps' started by Grogshla, Sep 16, 2018.

  1. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Hi,
    I’m close to purchasing a 5150iii 100w head. I just wanted to know if anyone has any experience with them and if they have had any issues that I should know about. I’m looking at the 100w head with the 6l6 tubes. I’d also be interested to try the stealth model but I can’t seem to find a shop that has one I can try before buying.
    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Kutt

    Kutt Well-Known Member

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    I've had the Stealth head with matching cabinet for about a year and a half. I bought the head new, and the cab used but in perfect, like-new condition.

    I only use it about once per month for gigs and have not had any problems with it whatsoever. If I used it more regularly, things might go differently but so far no complaints.

    I do feel these EVH amps have too much gain. I was able to reach Howard Kaplan who engineered the amp. He stated that we can use 12AY7 preamp tubes to reduce the gain a bit. He explicitly stated to not use 12AT7 tubes. I put a 12AY7 in V1 and prefer the sound of the amp more now, and there is still loads of gain.

    The Stealth was technically a limited run but they were available for a few years, which is longer than some non-limited runs have been. I only started seeing them disappear from retailers earlier this year so I assume the supply of them was finally depleted.
     
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  3. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Thanks for the reply that is really good information. I know what you mean with having too much gain but that is something that interests me. I do believe the stealth has more gain than the standard heads. I have heard that the 5150 can be noisy with lots of humming and hissing. Have you experienced any of this? Also some people who own the combo version complain that there is popping when changing channels using the footswitch. I heard this was fixed for the stealth and that the channel switching is seamless? I’ll be using the amp to rehearse and gig so I need it to be fairly reliable.. does it feel like the components are good quality and the amp is built well?
     
  4. Kutt

    Kutt Well-Known Member

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    If you have the gain up really high and the volume up there will be some noise, it's inevitable, but considering how much gain is on tap it's surprisingly quiet. A friend of mine used to have an original block letter Peavey 5150 and that fucking thing would squeal, hiss, feed back, spit, and hiss like crazy. But that's another story.

    I have not experienced channel popping with mine. I know all about it- I have a couple other amps that do this but not the Stealth.

    I haven't taken the amp out of the chassis to look at it so I can't really comment on the build quality. I'm really not savvy enough at the component level to comment either way.

    To summarize- no complaints from me. Just keep in mind I got mine new/factory sealed and it has low mileage on it. All amps will have issues small or large eventually no matter how well they are built. I see no reason for you to avoid getting one if you want one.

    Maybe look for a later model where they may have quietly worked some bugs and any reliability issues out of the design.
     
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  5. Kutt

    Kutt Well-Known Member

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    I should add that when I gig with it, my volume is a bit higher than 3 on the Blue channel and close to 4 on the Red channel for leads. The Green channel is up closer to half but that's because I keep the gain way down. I get no unwanted noise at those levels. It's plenty loud with a full rock band. Obviously not cranked, but quiet at the levels I use it at.

    Quality speaker and instrument cables help to reduce noise a lot, as do quality pickups on your fiddle.

    Hope this helps.
     
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  6. Ufoscorpion

    Ufoscorpion Well-Known Member

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    Not the same amp I know but my lbx ii was pretty noisy until I swapped out the ecc83's ( a mix out of my box of tubes ) it's considerably quieter now with a not unreasonable amount of his at very high gain settings . I recently changed the el84's from the original groove tube's to Shuguangs , what a massive difference that made , was like lifting a heavy blanket off of the speakers . The lbx is scary loud , the 100w evh's must be as loud as hell , good luck anyway I'm sure you'll dig whichever version you get .
     
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  7. drolaw

    drolaw Member

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    I own the EVH 5150III and I've had it since the second year they were available. I've gigged with it since I got it and still use it for gigging - never had a problem. Although I did have a few preamp tubes go bad but that was wear and tear.

    The switching on mine is seamless with no popping noise. I also don't have any issues with the hiss but I did when I used the lead channel. I do get a little "hum" when I play at gig volumes but I tamed that with an MXR noise gate. A couple of years ago I went midi and setup the head to use a midi control switcher (Voodoo Labs) and it works perfectly.

    I use the Blue channel exclusively (rhythm and leads - MXR 10 Band EQ in the loop to boost for leads). It is the best channel IMO. I used to use the lead channel for my leads but it was too saturated for my tastes.

    I play mostly Classic rock and Hard Rock (AC/DC, Foreigner, Bad Company, Van Halen, KISS, Journey, GnR, RATT, Motley, Scorpions, etc..) so I like a distorted tone but it has to be transparent and the EVH 5150III does that well.

    My experience with the EVH 5150 III has been positive since I received it new from Sweetwater.

    I highly recommend them.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2018 at 11:28 AM
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  8. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Thanks for the great information mate!
     
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  9. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Thanks mate!
     
  10. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Thanks for the information mate. That is really awesome info. I really like the look of the stealth but it is very expensive here in Australia. 4k. I can get the standard 5150iii for 2700 so I might have to see if I am really willing to pay another 1300 for the stealth. I play thrash metal so I like the idea of having more gain and tighter more defined mids/lows. Decisions decisions!!
     
  11. Dmann

    Dmann Well-Known Member

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    I picked up a brand new 2018 5150 III 50 watt, the 6L6 with the new concentric volume and gain pots, a couple weeks back. I use it for classic rock to thrash metal and it delivers. I am using it 4CM with an Axe-FX II mark II and the fractal MFC-101 foot controller. Midi channel switching is seamless, noise floor is super low, and the harmonic interaction is rich and lush. I've been a 100 watt guy most of my life, but this 50 watt head has changed my mind.

    I'm using it with a stock 1960B Marshall cab in 4 ohm setting. I have 3 of these cabs, loaded with G12T-75's. I have it setup so I am keeping all the tone controls on the amp at 5 or noon, while then using the Axe-Fx's many EQ's to sculpt tone.

    I also have a traditional pedal board, and this amp takes pedals both up front and in the loop excellently, and the EVH 4 button footswitch works 100%. I don't have an EQ pedal though so dialing in on the amp takes a little more patience, and the shared green/blue EQ calls for some compromise.

    One thing to note, this amp takes 7 preamp tubes! apparently they are all, including the power tubes, JJ tubes, but they are not labeled.

    I've had one issue so far, the PI tube on mine cooked up last friday, I had spares so whatever, not going through warranty hassle for that, but it's par for the course, so have some spare tubes.

    Otherwise, nothing but praise for this amp. IMO it's one of the best out there today in this price range. here in Canada it's $1300.00 CDN retail for the 50 watt.
     
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  12. Dmann

    Dmann Well-Known Member

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    Yup pretty much same for me with the 50watt.

    This is my rehearsal levels with full band and acoustic drums in a 400 square ft garage.

    Green pre - 3.5 master - 5.5
    Blue pre - 4.0 master - 3.5
    Red pre - 4.0 master - 4.5

    I have noise gates in use but really, this amp is extremely quiet but also has absolutely no problem going into total harmonic feedback at these levels.
     
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  13. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Thanks for the amazing information mate! The amp sounds great.
    I'm an 100w man also and I really like the extra clean headroom of the 100w amp but I am sure the 50w can deliver the goods. At this stage I am waiting back to hear from a few music stores in regards to their best price on the Stealth (which at this stage they have no ETA on as no one has one in stock). If the price is ridiculously expensive compared to the 100w 5150 I will just get the 5150. I was just initially concerned with the channel popping that I have heard about and really liked the idea of having more focused low/mid range on the stealth. I play thrash metal and need that tight defined crunch. If you think that the regular 50 and 100w can do this then it might be the way to go for bang for buck.
     
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  14. Grogshla

    Grogshla Active Member

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    Ok I’ve heard back from the music shops. My options are:
    -I can get the regular 5150iii for $2700 and I can have one in 2 weeks.
    -I can get the stealth for $3600 and they don’t k ow how long it will take. One music shop is saying around 3 months.

    I’ve never played a stealth and can’t test one as no shop has one. Is it worth paying the extra for the revoiced and extra detailed gain in the low/mids?

    Should I just get the regular 5150 and throw a tube screamer or some kind of overdrive on it to give it more gain/tightness like the stealth?

    Option 3 is to get the mxr5150 overdrive and run it into the crunch channel on my jcm2000 dsl100. I don’t think this will sound as cutting and tight as the proper evh amp due to el34 tubes and different transformers etc.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. It’s giving me a headache haha. I wish I could test drive the stealth.
     

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