JCM 900 legacy in marshall? vs 800, 2000, DSL, JVM, etc?

usablefiber

Active Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2013
Messages
418
Reaction score
204
I was curious about the 900. Been watching Oasis stuff since they re released their big concert film from the 90s, and noticed how noel always used 2 full stack JCM900s. I always loved their guitar sounds in their early days, not the pinnacle of quality but big open britishy guitar sounds. At that point in time he had enough money to get any amp he could possibly want but those were his amps of choice for many many years until into the 2000s when he went to a bunch of smaller amps, now using hiwatt.

I’m curious about the legacy and how the 900 stands in the marshall cannon as it’s not seemed to be a very sought after amp compared to the 800 and jubilee. A friend in a former band recently tried to sell his 900 head and was disappointed at how low the offers he got were compared to the 800

also curious how good it sounds compared to the 2000 and later DSl models and beyond. Or any major tone changes along the way. the timeline is a little confusing.

I personally always loved the simple 800 best as far as distorted playing just adding a boost but i’m also not a metal shredder type.
 

Matthews Guitars

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 17, 2019
Messages
6,161
Reaction score
9,783
Some 900s are basically the same amp as they were in the JCM800 series. They are undervalued. Bargains can be had there.

Why are they undervalued? Because of the perception that the JCM800 series was the last of the great Marshalls. It's just perception. In actuality some 900s are fine sounding amps and reliable, too.

I'm such an old schooler that to me, the JCM800 series is "too new", but JCM800s were very popular and still are and there has to be a reason for it.

In fact I'm not opposed to buying certain models in either the JCM800 or JCM900 series even though my preference is for the JMP era amps.
 

iron broadsword

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 27, 2011
Messages
2,984
Reaction score
1,481
Iirc it was the SL-X that had no clipping diodes and was basically an 800

Idk what oasis runs for amps but I seem to remember a lot of fuzz pedals from their tracks. Either way, even with the 4100 clipping if you set the amp to full volume and use the preamp gain as your volume knob then you're gonna get a very classic marshall sound that will take pedals well. With the preamp gain up it does get muddy though
 

tschrama

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 15, 2010
Messages
1,486
Reaction score
795
Location
Netherlands
Which jcm800. There are many models whit vastly different amo architectures. And which jcm900, again vastly different amp architectures in different models.

But I can tell you that the preamp achitecture of a small SS combo, pre 800 series, made it into the pedals of marshall (bluesbreaker, drivemaster and shredmaster) and also into the jmp-1 preamp and into the valvestates amps AND jcm900 DR’s.

all these different marshall product feature the same preamp architecture.
 

tschrama

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 15, 2010
Messages
1,486
Reaction score
795
Location
Netherlands
And yes … Oasis started with Valvestates and later switched to JCM900 DR’s

None of that preamp architecture is found in any current product, as far as I know. Certainly not in the tube amps, but maybe in the AVT series…? And jackhammer pedal?
 

coolidge56

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2019
Messages
1,205
Reaction score
2,694
Location
WA state hinterlands
One reason is humans just dislike change. It didn't help that the first year JCM900's introduced a 50% power switch that sounds like ass. It's odd A/B channel operation you had to read the manual to understand. The oddball 11-20 pot. And that the first 100 watts had a serious design flaw that resulted in the power tubes running way to cold which probably turned a lot of people off.
 

scozz

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2008
Messages
5,951
Reaction score
14,079
One reason is humans just dislike change. It didn't help that the first year JCM900's introduced a 50% power switch that sounds like ass. It's odd A/B channel operation you had to read the manual to understand. The oddball 11-20 pot. And that the first 100 watts had a serious design flaw that resulted in the power tubes running way to cold which probably turned a lot of people off.
Yes, all that stuff, plus the 900 came in on the heels of the wildly popular 800 series.
 

brock1774

New Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2017
Messages
6
Reaction score
18
I owned a 4100 for a couple years, used it to jam on the weekends with my pals. Not the best or worst amp I've played but solid enough to get the job done. My VM blows it away though.
 

Deftone

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2021
Messages
997
Reaction score
3,005
Location
Auburn, CA
No wrong answers here but I would add the 900DR was 1st released in '90 about the same time the Grunge movement started and the Mesa Dual Rectifier was released. Marshall's had been long associated with 60's & 70's rock & 80's hair metal. Every generation wants to make it's own statement so there was a movement away from Marshall and everyone wanted a Mesa.

I was no different, I regrettably sold my '79 JMP 2203 (still pains me to this day) and bought a Mesa. And if I'm honest, I'd have to say out of the four Marshall's I currently own, the 900DR would be my least favorite. I still like it though.
 
Last edited:

Snake321

New Member
Joined
Oct 11, 2021
Messages
27
Reaction score
19
Only amps I've ever ran.
4100's.
I've ean them single, piggybacked together for years.
Once in a while I get them to a happy place and play the hell out of them.
Then I get the bad tone thoughts and start fucking with them.
The more I pay attention to them the worse they get. Lately I've been reading all the hate on here and it got me fucking with them again .
Now I'm hating them.
Put my artist 30 on top on 10 and just had a ball.
Little amp blew them away
 

Rokinroller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 14, 2010
Messages
889
Reaction score
954
Location
Quebec Canada
Ah yes , the Artist 30 . Had one back in the 80's . What a great cool small box Marshall that was . SS front end with a pair of EL34's for power . It worked well . Loved that thing . Wish I still had it today . As for 900's , I've had a few 4100 DR's . Must say , I kind of liked them . The ones I had were pretty good . They needed the volume up to a sweet spot to open up their sound . Too many judged them at bedroom volume ... mistake , they were designed to roar at volume . They were very well built , solid . No pc board mounted tube sockets in there ! Rock solid reliable .
 


Top