In search of authentic plexi tones at practical volumes and setups

marshallmellowed

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Well over half of gigs out my way are tribute acts. Bars, clubs, small and large arenas. And they pay at least twice as much as a straight cover band. Sold a cab to a guy in an Eagles act—$4k+/night
$4k+ for one night, seems a bit hard to believe, they must be one hell of an Eagles tribute band.
 

tallcoolone

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$4k+ for one night, seems a bit hard to believe, they must be one hell of an Eagles tribute band.
They tour all the time, Eaglemania I believe? The places they play I agree some I’m sure they take less to stay busy...bottom line a great ‘regular’ cover band with no following will barely bring in a decent bar tab. Around here anyway. And originals? No money and a Sun/Mon night with 6 other bands.
 

marshallmellowed

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They tour all the time, Eaglemania I believe? The places they play I agree some I’m sure they take less to stay busy...bottom line a great ‘regular’ cover band with no following will barely bring in a decent bar tab. Around here anyway. And originals? No money and a Sun/Mon night with 6 other bands.
Yeah, most clubs in our area (Kansas City) may have a cover charge at the door, but that's about it. Those places usually pay around $600-$700 a night, while others that don't have a cover charge pay around $500. Definitely not something you could make a living on, good thing we're just in it for fun. :)
 

usablefiber

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I remember the Coheed and Cambria rig rundown they said they use axe fx for live shows but use real tube amps in the studio. The guitarists quote was “nothing sounds just like the amps” or something to that effect. I thought it was interesting.
 

Dogs of Doom

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Yeah, most clubs in our area (Kansas City) may have a cover charge at the door, but that's about it. Those places usually pay around $600-$700 a night, while others that don't have a cover charge pay around $500. Definitely not something you could make a living on, good thing we're just in it for fun. :)
being a house (top 40) cover band for the night & being a high end tribute are 2 different leagues...

Then there's how you do things...

Most acts. say national acts, will book a venue, for instance Madison Square Garden, for familiarity's sake. When they book it, they rent the venue as theirs for the night. It's not like the venue is hiring a band.

So, they rent the venue, now, the venue has certain vendors, like lighting, sound, security, that are pretty much, in-house, but, you aren't necessarily bound to use them, if you have something better, but, with that, comes all the responsibilities, of having licensed electricians, armed security, insurance for each, etc.

In that, you put out money for the venue, staffing, etc. You sell tickets, the money is all yours, minus ticket broker discounts...

You fill a 10,000 seat arena at $30 avg ticket price, that's $300,000, minus rent & staffing...

Now, it's up to band contracts how that gets split up. Management, members & road crew...

I know a guy, that used to play in a Zeppelin tribute band & the guy running the show is loaded. He puts money up front, rents a venue, pays rent, staffing & makes pretty good bank. Probably a lot more than each member in the band, but, he's the one that makes it all happen, so...

They also do normal gigs, where they just book a slot & sell tickets, but, you can bet that those are tighter budget, not as great of a production & nowhere as much work...

Here, they rented out a Vegas venue & did a run of shows:

 

marshallmellowed

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being a house (top 40) cover band for the night & being a high end tribute are 2 different leagues...

Then there's how you do things...

Most acts. say national acts, will book a venue, for instance Madison Square Garden, for familiarity's sake. When they book it, they rent the venue as theirs for the night. It's not like the venue is hiring a band.

So, they rent the venue, now, the venue has certain vendors, like lighting, sound, security, that are pretty much, in-house, but, you aren't necessarily bound to use them, if you have something better, but, with that, comes all the responsibilities, of having licensed electricians, armed security, insurance for each, etc.

In that, you put out money for the venue, staffing, etc. You sell tickets, the money is all yours, minus ticket broker discounts...

You fill a 10,000 seat arena at $30 avg ticket price, that's $300,000, minus rent & staffing...

Now, it's up to band contracts how that gets split up. Management, members & road crew...

I know a guy, that used to play in a Zeppelin tribute band & the guy running the show is loaded. He puts money up front, rents a venue, pays rent, staffing & makes pretty good bank. Probably a lot more than each member in the band, but, he's the one that makes it all happen, so...

They also do normal gigs, where they just book a slot & sell tickets, but, you can bet that those are tighter budget, not as great of a production & nowhere as much work...

Here, they rented out a Vegas venue & did a run of shows:


Yes, a broad spectrum, ranging from local cover & tribute bands to regional acts. One of my favorite Vegas bands was YBR, not sure if they're still performing there or not. They were more like the ultimate "cover band", not a tribute band.
 

tallcoolone

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I remember the Coheed and Cambria rig rundown they said they use axe fx for live shows but use real tube amps in the studio. The guitarists quote was “nothing sounds just like the amps” or something to that effect. I thought it was interesting.
I can see that 100%—who doesn’t love plugging into an amp, right? Like @marshallmellowed says, a live rig should be as user friendly as possible and it doesn’t get any more friendly than a scene based system self contained on the floor. Good to see Cliff going in that direction—I gotta think the AXEIV will ditch the rack format.
 

peterplexi

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Yeah, that makes sense, as it's more of a "show" than just playing music. Don't think I could ever be in a "true" tribute band, where everyone dresses up to look like the original members (kinda silly, IMO). Worse than that, our local AC/DC "tribute" band dresses up (Angus guy in school boy outfit...) and the guitar players both use tiny combo amps, what a let down. I'd rather see a band, sans outfits, with Marshall stacks, that nailed the AC/DC sound.
 

peterplexi

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Interesting that this would come up cause I considered ordering a large headcab and putting the SV20h in it for that very reason
 

marshallmellowed

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Interesting that this would come up cause I considered ordering a large headcab and putting the SV20h in it for that very reason
Don't think the SV chassis is wide enough for it to look "right". If I were using a Studio live, I'd probably just keep it out of sight (out of sight, out of mind).
 

usablefiber

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The other thing I will admit: I’m pretty bad at dealing with computers and technology, my head is better at hands on. I’m bery used to having my pedal board and effects on the ground for me to tweak and such with the amp. I don’t really have a good enough computer or tech so a computer based modeling amp seems daunting to me. If you get an axe fx can you just run it straight into a cab? Or does it go di to the board or computer?
 

marshallmellowed

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The other thing I will admit: I’m pretty bad at dealing with computers and technology, my head is better at hands on. I’m bery used to having my pedal board and effects on the ground for me to tweak and such with the amp. I don’t really have a good enough computer or tech so a computer based modeling amp seems daunting to me. If you get an axe fx can you just run it straight into a cab? Or does it go di to the board or computer?
The Axe Fx is a modeler/preamp, so you do need a power amp, in order to use it with a guitar cab. I use a Carvin power amp, when running mine through guitar cabs, which I don't do that often. For that raw, direct feeling you get playing through a guitar cab, nothing beats a tube amp straight into a cab. Having said that, the Axe Fx, through a good power amp and guitar cab comes very close.
 

Analogman88

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The endless search carries on. I know they cane out with a 20 watt plexi style recently and I’m not sure how it stacks up to the old ones.

When I had a remote place I loved cranking my yjm plexi style 100 watt in front of a 4 x 12, but haven’t found a way to use it otherwise.

There are obviously very specific aspects of the physics of these amp and cab setups that gave up the great classic rock Marshall tones up to Van Halen before master volume changed the game.

there are things about those non MV el34 circuits into 4 greenback that make the right sag, dynamics, color, feel, etc and I was wondering how close we have gotten to getting all those things right without needing unusablu high volume levels. Personally the newer master volume more front gainy type amps don’t quite get you there. And I mostly just see people using that stuff for more modern metal type playing which isn’t my jam.

the issue for me is the options, mods, speakers, tweaks, etc are a but overwhelming to choose especially since I can’t just buy a ton of stuff and experiment. So I have to get it right. I also know that the power and particular volume breaks up the old speakers a certain way which is a part of the sound that’s hard to get without it.

Also my damn yjm head is just about too heavy and bulky for 1 person to carry alone so it’s a pain to get around lol.

I’ve been out Of the loop a while with newer stuff so was wondering if technologies, maybe modeling amps Or new gear has gotten that stuff right? I know attenuators are nice but I also don’t really want to get a plexi drive or distortion type pedal either.

there is gotta be a way to get that stuff right cause it’s my favorite amp sound and feel and haven’t gotten it elsewhere. Would love to have one that’s easy and not crazy hard to use pulling up to jam or most live or practice.


Anyways just thinking and rambling about the subject. Maybe the new studio 20 ways is really all I need.

It’s more So a fun discussion and thought than anything really too. What do you guys think? Any interesting failed or successful setups? Thanks!
 

jeff kris

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ok, i posted here a year ago or so. I wanted to buy a small tubed amp that gets that sound I had with my JCM2000DSl50. that amp was so bad a$$. but way to loud for my neighbors and being a old jammer that doesnt play out and isnt a Guitar God in their mind. So I ended up buying the DSL 5/1 wtt combo. Im not that impressed. first Made in china. now it does have a solid sound but just cant get that marshall plex or crunch that you got with my jcm. People told me to put a overdrive pedal, etc. My point is I want a natural marshall sound. Does the hand wire england made 20 / 5 wt give me that sound? I just want to get more opinions before I layout 2k on a set up.
 

marshallmellowed

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ok, i posted here a year ago or so. I wanted to buy a small tubed amp that gets that sound I had with my JCM2000DSl50. that amp was so bad a$$. but way to loud for my neighbors and being a old jammer that doesnt play out and isnt a Guitar God in their mind. So I ended up buying the DSL 5/1 wtt combo. Im not that impressed. first Made in china. now it does have a solid sound but just cant get that marshall plex or crunch that you got with my jcm. People told me to put a overdrive pedal, etc. My point is I want a natural marshall sound. Does the hand wire england made 20 / 5 wt give me that sound? I just want to get more opinions before I layout 2k on a set up.
Your original post read "authentic Plexi tones", and this lead to a 5w DSL? A bit confusing. :scratch:
 
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JBA

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The endless search carries on. I know they cane out with a 20 watt plexi style recently and I’m not sure how it stacks up to the old ones.

When I had a remote place I loved cranking my yjm plexi style 100 watt in front of a 4 x 12, but haven’t found a way to use it otherwise.

There are obviously very specific aspects of the physics of these amp and cab setups that gave up the great classic rock Marshall tones up to Van Halen before master volume changed the game.

there are things about those non MV el34 circuits into 4 greenback that make the right sag, dynamics, color, feel, etc and I was wondering how close we have gotten to getting all those things right without needing unusablu high volume levels. Personally the newer master volume more front gainy type amps don’t quite get you there. And I mostly just see people using that stuff for more modern metal type playing which isn’t my jam.

the issue for me is the options, mods, speakers, tweaks, etc are a but overwhelming to choose especially since I can’t just buy a ton of stuff and experiment. So I have to get it right. I also know that the power and particular volume breaks up the old speakers a certain way which is a part of the sound that’s hard to get without it.

Also my damn yjm head is just about too heavy and bulky for 1 person to carry alone so it’s a pain to get around lol.

I’ve been out Of the loop a while with newer stuff so was wondering if technologies, maybe modeling amps Or new gear has gotten that stuff right? I know attenuators are nice but I also don’t really want to get a plexi drive or distortion type pedal either.

there is gotta be a way to get that stuff right cause it’s my favorite amp sound and feel and haven’t gotten it elsewhere. Would love to have one that’s easy and not crazy hard to use pulling up to jam or most live or practice.


Anyways just thinking and rambling about the subject. Maybe the new studio 20 ways is really all I need.

It’s more So a fun discussion and thought than anything really too. What do you guys think? Any interesting failed or successful setups? Thanks!
ok, i posted here a year ago or so. I wanted to buy a small tubed amp that gets that sound I had with my JCM2000DSl50. that amp was so bad a$$. but way to loud for my neighbors and being a old jammer that doesnt play out and isnt a Guitar God in their mind. So I ended up buying the DSL 5/1 wtt combo. Im not that impressed. first Made in china. now it does have a solid sound but just cant get that marshall plex or crunch that you got with my jcm. People told me to put a overdrive pedal, etc. My point is I want a natural marshall sound. Does the hand wire england made 20 / 5 wt give me that sound? I just want to get more opinions before I layout 2k on a set up.
I hate to tell you but you are absolutely chasing an impossibility.

1. Our ears don’t even have the same frequency response at low volume than they do at high volume. Kind of game over right there.
2. A speaker does not produce sound the same at .5 watts as it does 50 watts.. You have two primary magnetic characteristics where one dominates and colours the response at low volume and the other at high volume in a completely different way, as well very similar mechanical changes of suspension and cone behaviour.
3. Different speakers, 4x12’s (or 8 x12’s) arrays configurations, and different cabinet volume, dimensions, style (open, closed, ported), will never sound like anything else. I.E. a 1x12 small volume open back will NEVER sound anything like those big cabs. Can’t change physics.
4. Feedback & Dynamics are a function of volume (amplification).

For better or worse, modeling is the only thing that can ROUGHLY correct most of this crap and approximate these complexities at low volumes: it’s so good these days that the limitations are usually poor quality (not very linear) headphones or speakers due to a lack of one’s knowledge, research, and/or funds. Look, I have owed and played most the iconic amps, the studio series, DSL’s, and modellers. No replacement for displacement. Nothing sounds like an opened up classic 100 watter on the appropriate stack for A certain sound. Nothing!! .. but IMO those rigs also do not sound inspiring at low volume. I don’t really care for modellers in general but I still chose to use mine when I’m stuck in a no or low volume situation.
 
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scozz

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ok, i posted here a year ago or so. I wanted to buy a small tubed amp that gets that sound I had with my JCM2000DSl50. that amp was so bad a$$. but way to loud for my neighbors and being a old jammer that doesnt play out and isnt a Guitar God in their mind. So I ended up buying the DSL 5/1 wtt combo. Im not that impressed. first Made in china. now it does have a solid sound but just cant get that marshall plex or crunch that you got with my jcm. People told me to put a overdrive pedal, etc. My point is I want a natural marshall sound. Does the hand wire england made 20 / 5 wt give me that sound? I just want to get more opinions before I layout 2k on a set up.
Well firstly your Dsl5 combo is made in Vietnam not China, and the Plexi crunch you’re looking for lives in the Marshall SV20. It’s a 20/5 watt amp, made in England, head or combo, that’ll get you where you want to go.

I’ve heard some say the green channel in the Dsl can get fairly close to a Plexi tone, when cranked and using an od pedal as a clean boost. I don’t have any idea if that’s the case, I don’t own one. Have you tried that?
 


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