Plexi Metal

Discussion in 'The Tone Zone' started by Skotosynthesis, Mar 17, 2011.

  1. Skotosynthesis

    Skotosynthesis Well-Known Member

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    No, not a "metal-face Plexi"... after all, that's a contradiction, right?...
    This is just an observation I've tested time after time, on every "plexi" style amp I've ever played.
    Now that I finally HAVE one (a JTM45/100 clone,... close enough to reasonably say you "have a plexi," unless you're trying to sell it,) I've been able to fool with it enough to confirm that this is true:
    You can get a "metal" tone from a Plexi-style amp by doing this one thing: only playing through Channel I (the "high treble" channel,) and turning it literally UP TO 10; or, if the channels are jumpered, turn Channel I up to 10 and turn up Channel II only just enough to fill out the tone to suit your preference...
    otherwise, turn the mids up, the treble ALL THE WAY up, and the bass down... almost all the way. Turning the bass down seems counter intuitive, but it tightens it up and makes it less "flubby."
    Forget about gain, I'm not even talking about gain... just the base tone. I guess you can hot-rod it or use a pedal or gainier pre-amp tubes or whatever suits your fancy or floats your boat. You can get your gain however you like to get your gain, I'm just talking about getting that edgy, crispy rudimentary tone you need for kick-ass metal. You don't need a modern amp... unless you are just in love with transistor distortion or doubled up rectification. In fact, doing this will come pretty damn close to a JCM800 sound out the door. I know, my amp has KT66's, but I've played through enough Leads and Super Leads w/ EL34's to know that this works both ways... in fact, it will sound even MORE modern through those (my KT66's are like low-grit sandpaper... very rough. The EL34's are like the fine-grain stuff, very smooth. Each to his own.)
    Just passing along the EXP!!!
    ...oh yeah, and it won't really work unless you PLAY HARD. I mean, attack that MF.
     
  2. diesect20022000

    diesect20022000 In Memorandum VIP Member

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    you're going down the same road a buddy of mine took. he stopped at the Framus Cobra though,lol. he was a metal player though in fairness. i want a cobra.
     
  3. MonstersOfTheMidway

    MonstersOfTheMidway Well-Known Member

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    The absence or presence of transistors does not make or break a amp; it takes a few other things to go wrong before you can unequivocally say, "That's a nasty sound coming from your amp!"

    There's lots of hype surrounding these old amps right now, but I now know that you really can't just assume that the sound will be great. Someone in the general duscussion section started a thread comparing a modern marshll amp to an old 70's metal face marshall. I can say from experience that it really goes beyond "just what's in the amp."

    I jammed with this guy who owned a '70s Marshall (I don't remember the series or model number, but it was one of those metal face 100 watt heads). This guy brought along a 1960A stock cab, later '90's Charvel locking tremolo guitar, and a distortion pedal. I brought my stock JVM410H, stock Line 6 2x12 cab, and a stock epiphone les paul 100. I can tell you that I was very unimpressed with his sound. The tone was thin and barely noticeable whether he was playing or not. Yet, if I stopped playing, it was very noticeable because the sound was very thick. The groove sounded very nice and thick with me and the bass player, but this other guy was fucking it up with his faux high gain, thin-ass, tired-out scooped mids, weak tone. I was shocked to hear how terrible this guy sounded because I assumed that his old Marshall would sound so fantastic just on reputation alone. I thought about it and later talked to the bass player about it. He agree and said it sounded like ass, but that it was also other things that he chose to make it sound like shit. Things like his choice of amp settings, pickups, distortion pedals, etc. I really believe that the any crappy player can make a great amp sound like crap and any good player can get something good out of a not so venerable piece of gear. I learned this when I saw Peter Frampton live a few years ago. Peter was using some of those 70's Marshall 100 watt heads and he sounded unbelievable. I was shocked at just how much different my listening experience was in comparison. I've also heard forum member GuitarGoalie get some decent tones out of amp modeling and emulation software when many people here in the past have taken a big dump on this type of technology. There's nothing inherently supperior about these old amps, but just a lot of overly excited people running to their computers to boast.

    Bottom line is that too many people are trying to sway everyone else to believing that something is so just because he/she says so. I do like those older Marshalls, make no mistake, but I will never have the over-enthusiasm that some people here will spew because that kind of over-the-board thinking can only make you sound like a fool.
     
  4. Skotosynthesis

    Skotosynthesis Well-Known Member

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    Yep. I agree. Different strokes, as they say. I hope I didn't give the impression that I was glorifying and forsaking all others, so to speak. I was just pointing out that a damn fine metal tone can be had from that old circuit... because there are a lot of detractors who say it's only "good for one thing."
     
  5. Ydna

    Ydna New Member

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    How well can your amp scream with a strat with no pedals? Can you get like, really singing leads?
     
  6. yladrd61

    yladrd61 Well-Known Member

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    A good fuzz face will cause lots of mayhem with a Srat :headbanger:
     
  7. mike mike

    mike mike Well-Known Member

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    Yeah man. Not enough for metal. A stock 800 isn't enough for 80's "metal" either unless boosted. It's just not gonna happen
     
  8. HOT TUBES 70

    HOT TUBES 70 Well-Known Member

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    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mprcZuwfl4&feature=player_detailpage]YouTube - BOSS ME 50 - 1986 Van Halen Live Tone[/ame]
     

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