DSL15—An Underappreciated Classic

Solid State

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The DSL15 has one of the best clean tones in the business. Wish I had bought one.

I've never heard it sound good at high volume though.
 

JvZ

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The DSL15 is bashed so much. I can't understand why it doesn't get more likes.

OK-True: the stock speaker is a real mess.
But V30's are great with this amp, and the ECC823 is a winner.., and the combo has reverb on board
 

Seventh Son

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The DSL15 is bashed so much. I can't understand why it doesn't get more likes.

OK-True: the stock speaker is a real mess.
But V30's are great with this amp, and the ECC823 is a winner.., and the combo has reverb on board
I agree. With a V30, it can initially sound a bit thin in comparison to the stock speaker, which is low-mid heavy, whereas the V30 is more treble heavy, but that’s because the V30 is a very compact sounding speaker—a characteristic that makes it so popular in recording, as it sits really nicely in the mix.

The DSL15’s only real weakness is the lack of an effects loop, but that can be remedied by putting one in, which I think is worth it, for those who want a loop, as the amp is a very good platform for upgrades.
 

JvZ

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I've thought of that, but never put a FX loop in (yet...)
Looked at the metropoulos FX. Seems OK, but never had a chance to listen to one.

Actually, i've never missed the FX loop yet.
There is one in my JVM210h, and i use a small pedalboard there (JVM Footswitch / Tuner, Delay, Chorus, and a Phaser)

Did put it in front of the DSL15c on occasion, and works fine there.
 

JAC

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I dig mine but.....I think of it as the amp which MF hates! It has taken some bashing here a bit! If I ever got a second one used, preferably a head version since I have a combo already, I would do the Johnny Eggz mod on it. Good job Johnny, after I listened to your demo a few times I finally got it!
 

JvZ

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True … it is bashed a lot.
Bla bla is better .. etc.. Most without an explanation WHY they dig another amp.

DSL15’s PI is a tube, vs solid state in DSL20 and DSL5. This could make a big difference, just as 6v6’s/EL34’s

This amp sings, has a wide tonal range, and works great on lower volumes too. She’s a definite winner ..!!

Jeggz mods are great. (Although i never did them myself). He’s put great work into this.
I’ve just put in a V30, and did the ECC823 swap. This worked right for me .! (Just as it did in my JVM210h)
 
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Seventh Son

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As my old posts here on the forum will confirm, I used to dislike the amp, until I realized just how good it is. I actually love the amount of gain it offers on the Ultra Gain channel. It can go from crunchy to fuzzy. This can be useful for certain applications.
 

WiderGates

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Bla bla is better .. etc.. Most without an explanation WHY they dig another amp.
DSL15’s PI is a tube, vs solid state in DSL20 and DSL5. This could make a big difference, just as 6v6’s/EL34’s

Bla, bla......
Sorry, but that's wrong.

All DSL20s have a tube PI.
DSL1 and DSL5 before 2018 have a tube PI.
DSL1HR, DSL1CR and DSL5CR have a solid state PI.
 
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JvZ

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Its what a tech told me, when i asked about the 3x (in stead of 4x) preamp tubes in a 20
Similar explanations are found on this forum, well explained

Maybe someone can show us by a schematic, to be sure
 
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JvZ

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you’re right, I misread.
I checked, it was the DSL5cr we were talking about back then
 

kman

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I am surprised to read here that the DSL15 and the DSL20 are that diffetent in tones.
Might have to get one to try

I have a DSL15 combo. Was not sure what to do with it.
As Seventh son says... the DSL15 combo records really well.
I have evee researched and tried every cab I got here to try to make that DSL sound better.
Turns out, after several tests, the crummy stock Celestion speaker thatcMarshsll placed in my DSL actually sounds the best.

Also, Seventh Son, I love the Dave Murry Strat. I Got one, and I love it.

Looks like I will looking at DSL20s
 

Alan Conte

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I just modified mine, it's a totally sweet amp now, I tried to sound something like slash, and this little guy gets away with it
 

JAC

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To the OP. Thanks for sharing this with those interested. I fell for this since I first demoed my second LP I got. I could not get the tone of that combo out of my memory, so I got one after I got laid off from a profitable job I got hurt on. I'm changing out the speaker. I entertain some recommendations. I will get a head version DSL15H when I find one reasonably priced. I would do the Johnny Eggz mod on it. I like to call it the Bronx Marshall tone. I want to keep my DSL15C stock but, I want to swap out the speaker.
 

Gene Ballzz

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DSL20CR is generally a DSL15 that has been upgraded with EL34 power tubes, an effects loop and slight modifications to the channel voicings to make those two channels more easily compatible with same/similar tone settings. And FWIW, you can get a bit more of that "Fender clarity" (not clean-ness, per se), by switching the EL34s of the DSL20CR to 6V6 tubes (as per DSL15). Easy/Peasy. plug n play, due to the cathode bias configuration. On my DSL20, I toggle back & forth between EL34s and 6V6s. Each has it's own pusses and minuses. And I've also owned as DSL15C and let it go, due to no effects loop and fairly drastic disparity between the channel voicings. CLASSIC Green/Clean is great on both amps!

DISCLAIMER:
While the DSL20 can happily accommodate 6V6s, DO NOT try EL34s in the DSL15, due to the higher current draw of the heater/filament circuit!

Just DSLin'
Gene
 

Springfield Scooter

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I had the 15, and stumbled on a 20 head....
I compared both, then sold the 15...
But I never used it for recording, or its cleans.
Id love to score a DSL20CR combo.
 

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