I am in process of finding a nifty nice amplier for church playing ... as you know, most amplifers are real loud and basically, when you crank them up, the sound guy does not have much control of the house sound .... so like to hear from you guys your experiences and what amps you have found works ...
So, I'd like to offer a couple suggestions for you, however, first I have to declare that I work at Line 6. Secondly I want you to know that I am attached to a particular way of handling guitar tone in the context of worship.... It's the pop-rock approach to guitar tone. You want to find an amp that sounds brilliant, rich, deep, complex and inspiring when it's breaking up just a little bit. That way you have a massive range of tone accessible from your hands. Play soft -it's clean, dig in - its dirty. Very expressive. Low wattage amps are going to do this best in the worship context. For example, Dwayne Larring of Sonic Flood / Brenton Brown, etc. plays a /13 7 watt amp. I've done gigs with him where he still runs a power soak to drop the stage level while achieving the right amount of break up.
So we're looking for low wattage amps: VOX AC15, Fender Blues Jr, Epiphone Valve Jr, Blackheart, Orange Tiny Terror, etc. Many of the less expensive, low wattage, production amps have cheaper components. So there are all sorts of sites out there that offer upgrades for the components and transformers that affect the tone. www.turretboards.com is one....
Also a great quality speaker, like a celestion blue bell, heritage or green back can make big improvement with a lower cost amp.
Another approach is the Line 6 Spider Valve. It's an inspiring sounding amp co-designed with Bogner Amplification that sounds great at a variety of volumes. Hope that helps.
wow, you work for line6!! Guess what, I owe a PODxt Live and I just love it ... however, i plugged it into our church Peavy amp and did not really like what i heard out of it ... the amp tone just did not have the warmth and brilliance.
I have been checking out the Vox AC15 and wanting to check out Blackheart amps.
Did not quite understand what you mentioned about Brenton Brown's setup ... what's a /13 7 watt amp? also, am interested on how a power soak is run ...
What Peavey do you have at church? If it's a Classic 30 or 50 try plugging into the Power Amp In, and running your POD in Live mode to Power Amp. If it doesn't have a power amp in, try running into the guitar in but with the bass and treble at 0 and the MID at max..... Counter intuitive I know.
I second that. Go with an FX loop in or a power amp in (on a tube amp) in Live mode and you'll like what you hear. Otherwise, bypass the amp altogether and think about a full range powered speaker for monitoring (Mackie/JBL).
If you're looking for a great low wattage amp at a low price, I can recommend the Blackheart BH5-112 from personal experience. It doesn't have reverb, so be prepared for that. If you like the POD XT, you can always turn off the amp/cab/mic modeling and use the built in FX/Reverb.
Hey Melvyn i have a Vox AC15 CC i like the sound of it but it doesn't do the job when yo crank the volume it losses its nice tone, its good for studio recording if your looking for good sound when the volume is low or high, go with the Fender Hotrod Deville 212, i've used it and i'm in love with it.
Agreed with the nod to low wattage amps. If you're mic-ing them there's no reason to have a full Marshall Stack knocking over the old ladies in the first row. I'm getting a Blues Jr as soon as I can to replace a Fender Princeton 65W (Solid-state). I have it set as loud as I can on stage and it's under a sound suppression box and I can barely get it to break the way I want it to (it's at volume level 2.5 with the drive at 0.5). I have a friend that leads at our other site, where the worship is much louder, and he uses a Blues Jr. with great results.
Must be cool working at a place like that, D. Hopefully you have a job like product testing or something like that...speaking of which are you hiring product testers? (kidding...but seriously.)
Ditto for Divided by 13. They're real expensive but I play their JRT9/15 - it's the most toneful, flexible and incredible amp I've ever heard - PERIOD! I've a gear nut who's' always switching out his gear and I've never even considered changing amps since I got this. It also sounds amazing at low volumes. On teh cheap side of things, I'd also say ditto for the Blackheart, Epiphone or Fender Blues Junior but you should do some mods to any of those amps if you get them.
If you don't want to buy a 'super-amp' ( aka boutique ) then I'd go with one of the Solid State Fenders with the DSP module. We have a 1-12 at church that I'm surprised how much I like it. Tube-wise I like the Fender Blues Jr, or the epiphone just up from the Valve Jr. either is under $500 I personally am trying to get away from digital/multi/modeling effects, but a quick versatile way to go on the SS Fenders. I've finally relegated them to the category of synthesizers, because you're hearing what a computer thinks your guitar should sound like, but that's another discussion altogether. FYI the local mom/pop store beats Guitar Center on everything I buy guitar-wise, usually buy10-20%, but more like 25% on my Les Paul, so research globally, and shop locally!