The 2205/2210 amps weren't horrible. You just had to keep them away from a 2203/2204. I gigged in a band with a guy who played a 2205 (2210 - not sure). I thought his tone sounded good. In his next band he played with a guy who had an early 80s 2204. The difference in tone was unmistakable. Life is sometimes a matter of perspective.
The same funny thing happened with many mesa guys and their caliber 50/studio preamp rack with the graphic EQ (always "V-tweak") in these two-guitar-players bands...
Mesa guy:"Hey guys listen..this is the metallica-sound.."
Marshall guy: graaaaang....
Mesa guy: "I can't hear me,I can't hear me..."
It was always the same. Hehe...
My brother had a 2204, sounded great cranked until the cops came, but we both thought it was dumb, no gain until you crank it.
I ended up getting a 2210, the shop had three of them that I was switching between, 2 sounded like ****, just fuzzy gain. But one sounded not fuzzy at all, and I still own it 28 years later. Sounds glorious with my Monte Allums modded SD-1, I've yet to find a profile that sounds as good.
Only recently I discovered the pre '87 units were the less desirable units (I assume the 2 fuzzy ones I tried), that seem to give the 2210/05s a bad reputation.
My brother swapped his 2204 for a Peavey Triumph 60. Possibly the dumbest trade ever
I actually knew a guy who had a very convincing sounding 2205 back in the day. But in general there was a 2204/modifying hype specially after the this hype spilled over from the USA and a very famous (back then) german guitar player went on tour with a Baldringer modified 2204. Which sounded fantastic. REALLY fantastic.
The issue with all these mods..they broke down a lot. Preferably during the gig. The reason I never modified my beloved 2204..I went one day to the shop to this amp guy with the amp and the money in my hands ..and there were like 6-7 plexis & 2204 standing and waiting for "repair" while an angry player just left the shop saying in an angry tone that "this is the second time" and that he would "need his amp on stage and not in the repair all the time".
Until the Rectifier and the 5150 appeared the "hunt for the grail tone" was a mess. Broken Marshall's,silly racks and expensive Mesa mk amps.. and ofcourse the epic '80s "fx-loop misery".. haha..
And then people ask why whoever went though all that ..loves his Kemper today..
Dalls Rangemaster was used by many well known guitarists. Didn't many guitarists used rack effects with built in OD's in the 80's?
For sure..and many other treble boosters,some even custom made (eddie kramer for jimiand others) but this is not my point.
My point is that there was never a "nerdy pedal hype"..This came in the late '90s and became "transcendental" and somewhat ZEN in the following decade.
The MXR+ was not a treble booster. For me the trick was to use an almost dead 9V battery. It was maybe the best drive pedal ever in that configuration.
The DA treble booster was a great unit as well. Plugged right into the guitar. Did way more than the name indicates.
We have a slighty different perespective. Maybe due to location? I appreciate your viewpoint.
All good. I fully agree with you. I just don't remember anyone back then in the 80s who was into any kind of pedal hype. That's all..
I know. Unfortunately rehearsal studios were full of them though. Probably because it made wannabe rockstars feel like the real thing so brought in business.
Oh yes.. whatever played the "big names"..
I had a Dan Armstrong treble booster, a big muff, an MXR distortion +, and Fuzz face myself. I bought the treble booster in 75 and all others came after that.
From memory Maestro fuzz, Fuzzrite, Tonebender, Rangemaster, Boss offered a few I think.
Along the way 80s and beyond I owned many others
Treble boosters..that mxr..wasn't that a treble booster too?
All the drives and distortion pedals came later in the 80s. I wouldn't say that people loved them. As they did not love the od-channel of the 2205/2210.
Otherwise there would have not been this hysteria with the marshall mods of the 2204 back then.
I was only having a laugh. I know there is way more to it than just single tube or diodes.
I remember using 100w JCM800s in rehearsal rooms back in the day and absolutely hating them. It turned out that the reason (at least in my case) was that I just never got them running hard enough for the power amps to really saturate and do their thing. With those amps, a large part of the magic was in the output section.
I still have a Rev G Rectifier that was my main amp from around 1996 until I got the Kemper and I love it but that amp and Soldanos etc rely on the pre-amp for the tone with a clean high headroom power amp to make it loud.
Two very different approaches but both wonderful when done well.
It is true however that a large number of very successful amps did, and still do, use diodes in the clipping section. Almost every Marshall since the JCM800, the JMP1 preamp, Blackstar etc and I believe even the Dumble FET mode is a solid state clipping circuit. Most people don't even know that these "all valve" amps that they love are actually getting their distortion from a build in overdrive pedal.
Even back then ..100w were "to much".
Most players I knew were hunting for 2204. I had (actually still have) a 1981 2204..
Had some "obscenely good offers" but kept it because I wanted it to modify and use it myself. It is still in original condition and I see now offers again in the 3000-4000€ on eBay.. hmm..
I guess it depends on how you define the 'golden era'. Pedals were being used in the 60s and 70s A LOT. And I don't remember them being the enemy no1. Didn't happen IME. It seems you and I are from different generations with different memories or viewpoints. All good...
How many pedals do you know from the 60s and 70s?
I mean OD and Dist-pedals?
And in the '80s which pedal was the "choice of the guitar heroes"???
Don't like to argue with you. Just curious.
There were lot's of 'traditional' amps modded with cascaded gain staging, diode clippers(silicon, germanium, LEDs), different types of master volume, PAB, biasing, etc... Most were looking for more, like goes to '11'. Also, music was changing and super high gain became a thing guitarists desired.
Boutique became a thing, but mods came first simply because so many amps already existed and it is easier to mod an existing amp rather than build a full amp from scratch.
Judging by the effect pedal market, it seems not that many ditched pedals for very long if at all. Guitarists seem to be on an endless, outward search for some 'magic'. IME, most never look inside of themselves.
Things developed rapidly in the '80. Ultra Fast. Mods,racks,"boutique"..Ofcourse for us europeans..whatever came from the USA..we copied it.
But pedals were never part of the hype in the "golden era". Not at all. Rather the "enemy no1".
I remember vividly when I noticed this "pedal-revival" at the beginning of the 2000s and young lads asked "what OD used Eddie on eruption" or Ingwie on far beyond the sun..
That was an interesting time.
The answer is ofcourse that all the tube amp technicians put an extra preamp tube (12ax7 I believe I don't remember anymore ) into the circuit. People wanted "tube gain" and were obsessed by it.
Btw we talk only about the single channel JCM800s.. 2204/50w..
Except most Marshalls and many other "tube amp" legends use Solid State Clipping Diodes in the pre-amps anyway. I'm not an amp tech but from what I hear the JCM 800 is pretty much a distortion pedal with a valve power section I think
So what went wrong and thousands and thousands of guitar players all over the world ditched their pedals and either went for "modifications" of their 800s or bought SLOs/5150s or Rectifiers??
My lesson on drives....stomps are not needed, find the right amp (and therefore) profile and they are not needed...but that's just me.
In the "old" days, drives were often needed because of the lack of a master volume or just not enough gain in an amp. Most people used cheap boss type solid state pedals, so I never understood why someone would have a glorious valve amp with a cheap ss pedal in front. However people got more creative in balancing their drives with the amp or just became used to a certain sound and hence drives became part of their sound. Pedals got more expensive and sophisticated as well and sometimes cost more than the amp!
Now its a whole cottage industry full of myths as well as magic...the TS has become the go to drive, used by so many famous people, but I've never liked them. The Klon has reached "legend" status amongst pedal nuts, commanding stupid money. I have even seen the increase in price of the old Marshall Gov'nor pedals which IMO they were awful.
The point is, its so subjective that there is no right or wrong answer, but I do think much of it is psychological and law of diminishing returns - Nuno recently said he has a ProCo Rat plugged in but with no drive engaged which just adds something...but few people who try his rig can hear the difference..
Personally, start with decent amps and see if anything is missing. I recently added the Klon 4 from the presets in the KPA on a couple of profiles, but I really can't hear much difference, just another tone shaper/add's slight compression etc...
The whole SLO-/5150-/Rectifier-/Bogner etc hype grew out of the hate and the desperation for the boss and ibanez OD/DIST-pedals..
I don't remember a single '80 shredder who did not ran with his jcm800 to a local tube amp guru for "some modification "..
This is ofcourse something that nobody wants to hear about today.
Think Iron Maiden, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains ...
Maiden is marshall tones. I really would try to find a nice beefy,chunky aggressive marshall profile (think JCM800 or JVM/DSL kinda thing..not plexi..) with not to much gain.
I know in the past maiden used mxr drives/booster for their lead sounds. There are really enough profiles to go for this. My recommendation would be steavens poundcake profiles.
Alice in chains...dual rectifier revision G. This was the sound back then.
Pearl Jam.. yes definitely TS. they used a lot of tweed amps.
In general I use pedals only for "certain special tasks" like 60s psychedelic sounds (jimi!!...fuzz!) or a nice throaty fusion sound with a TS into a '65 champ..
Other than that.. I am no "cheap-transistor-boost my tube boutique amp" kind of guy..🙃😉
Question is (as always) for what kind of sound?
Let's start from there..
talking about vibrato and master class ..
RIP Bernie Mardsen.
Honey and gold for the ears no more..
Exactly. I don't know her songs. Also Taylor swift..not my thing..
But if something is not good..it is not good!
I don't like this "yea but she has a million fans and 10 Grammys and you are only jealous"-kind of thing. This is not valid. Or any porn actress with their "million clicks & fans" is a better actor than any nameless but talented actors in the small little but precious theaters I know.
Enough with this BS. This goes to long.
As I said.. I don't know HER and I don't care about Taylor Swift. They may deserve everything they have... just leave this "they are famous and everything they do is class"-thing out of this.
That vibrato on purple rain just made my cat bleeding out of her ears..Seriously..
btw.. the unpowered head is now 1499€ at thomann.
If I am not wrong this is a huge price drop. Whatever the reasons..
Didn't try it yet myself.
In any case from what I hear some studio guys use the summer break to grasp all the stuff you can do now..And from what I understand LP will have huge implications.