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  #1  
Old 01-05-2021, 06:47 PM
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Default Amps for archtop jazz tones?

I was debating between here and the electric guitar subforum for this question. For clean jazz tones on an archtop, what amps are you guys choosing? Solid state or tube? Brand and model?
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Old 01-05-2021, 10:50 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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Here's a recent thread that might help:

https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/...d.php?t=600092
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Old 01-06-2021, 06:51 AM
cheer tunes cheer tunes is offline
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I just had a similar thread that got a lot of feedback that you may want to reference. For me I'm going for a Henriksen Bud10 because of the tone, features, and portability. I want some thing I can sing and play through, use for small performances, and transport easily. For me this translates to solid state for consistency. For clean jazz tones you should check them out.
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Old 01-06-2021, 07:33 AM
warfrat73 warfrat73 is offline
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Roland is pretty much the benchmark for clean jazz tone.

And, of course, Fender tube amps (Princeton, Deluxe, Twin, etc.) are also synonymous with clean tone.
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Old 01-06-2021, 10:38 AM
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Thanks everyone. I missed the other thread. Will check it out now.

Any thoughts on the Fender Mustang GTX for clean playing?
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Old 01-06-2021, 02:52 PM
JGinNJ JGinNJ is offline
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I don't know about the GTX one, but I have a v 1.o Mustang and it's a piece of crap. I bought it used, and initially I thought it sounded good modeling the Blackface. But it's noisy, junk "artifacts" in the sound. The controls are complicated, and the USB port doesn't work.
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Old 01-06-2021, 03:50 PM
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Polytone!!
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Old 01-06-2021, 05:04 PM
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Any thoughts on the Roland JC22?
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Old 01-06-2021, 05:46 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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The best straight-ahead jazz tone I ever heard was a two-pickup Gibson Johnny Smith through a JBL-equipped Deluxe Reverb - only problem was that it weighed as much as a Twin...

The blue-check mid-60's Ampeg Gemini II (and to a lesser extent the rare B-12XT Portaflex 2x12" guitar amp) was the sound of the NYC "Key Club" A-list studio players - and they sell for about half the price of a Fender of similar vintage/power...

Randall RG-120 "orange-panel/grey-panel" combos - available in a variety of speaker configurations - are grossly undervalued on the market, built like tanks, and were arguably the first solid-state amps with any real tone...

Think old-school analog - tube or solid-state - and loads of clean headroom, and you'll be on the right track...
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Old 01-07-2021, 11:47 AM
Brent Hahn Brent Hahn is offline
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I have a Gemini II and used to engineer sessions with them a lot -- they have a glassy top end that I personally wouldn't want if I was trying to get that ES175 Joe Pass/Jim Hall/Kenny Burrell kinda thing. A Polytone is pretty much that sound if you can find one. The closest modern equivalent I've heard is Quilter. For me, the Roland JC's are close but not quite it. But they're more versatile for other styles and have that cool stereo chorus.
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Old 01-07-2021, 12:04 PM
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For me personally, I'm not a classical jazz guitarist so immitating a specific player or style really isn't a big deal. I already own a PRRI and a Vox AC30. I'm thinking a nice solid state amp for very clean tones might be fun for playing nice clean jazzy runs on an archtop. As of right now, I'm kind of leaning toward the JC22. A local shop has a new one discounted $100 below what I am seeing them on the internet.
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Old 01-07-2021, 04:32 PM
Steve DeRosa Steve DeRosa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoneDigger View Post
...I already own a PRRI and a Vox AC30. I'm thinking a nice solid state amp for very clean tones might be fun for playing nice clean jazzy runs on an archtop. As of right now, I'm kind of leaning toward the JC22....
I tried one of these a while back when I was looking for a full-featured practice amp, and I found the sound somewhat thin and lacking in low/low-mid response - not what I'd guess you'd be looking for with a 17" full-depth carved-top; since you've got two good amps already, there are a couple of options:
  • In the thread I referenced above, I mentioned a cocktail-hour musician who ran his Epiphone ES-175 Premium through a (discontinued) Fender Frontman 25R with a replacement Eminence Lil' Buddy speaker - one of these (or a Cannabis Rex 10) in your Princeton would provide you with a mellower tonality in a full-featured all-tube practice/small-gig combo;
  • Plug into the AC30's Normal channel low-gain input, set the Master Volume to around 3:00, and dial in your sound with the Tone Cut and Channel Volume - while the Celestions (Greenback or Alnico Blue) aren't ideal jazz speakers IMO, there's more than enough power-stage grunt and headroom to get some sweet tubey-clean tones at reasonable volume;
  • If you don't want to tinker with the Princeton the TDPRI guys love these, and with an Eminence Cannabis Rex 12" replacement speaker you could have a dedicated all-tube club amp for the discounted price of the JC-22:




    https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=611815

  • Although tubes add their own euphonic coloration (the warmth, depth, and organic richness you hear in older jazz recordings, and which I personally like) some guys just prefer the more pristine analog solid-state tonality - if you're more inclined in that direction I get excellent results with my Godin CW II and a (discontinued) Fender Frontman 212R, and at $150-200 for a good used one it's a cheap way to get major headroom and "big-clean" full-range tone with classic "blackface Twin" looks:


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Old 01-07-2021, 04:47 PM
H165 H165 is offline
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Quote:
Polytone!!

+1

A well respected amp among jazz players.
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  #14  
Old 01-07-2021, 05:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve DeRosa View Post
I tried one of these a while back when I was looking for a full-featured practice amp, and I found the sound somewhat thin and lacking in low/low-mid response - not what I'd guess you'd be looking for with a 17" full-depth carved-top; since you've got two good amps already, there are a couple of options:
  • In the thread I referenced above, I mentioned a cocktail-hour musician who ran his Epiphone ES-175 Premium through a (discontinued) Fender Frontman 25R with a replacement Eminence Lil' Buddy speaker - one of these (or a Cannabis Rex 10) in your Princeton would provide you with a mellower tonality in a full-featured all-tube practice/small-gig combo;
  • Plug into the AC30's Normal channel low-gain input, set the Master Volume to around 3:00, and dial in your sound with the Tone Cut and Channel Volume - while the Celestions (Greenback or Alnico Blue) aren't ideal jazz speakers IMO, there's more than enough power-stage grunt and headroom to get some sweet tubey-clean tones at reasonable volume;
  • If you don't want to tinker with the Princeton the TDPRI guys love these, and with an Eminence Cannabis Rex 12" replacement speaker you could have a dedicated all-tube club amp for the discounted price of the JC-22:




    https://www.monoprice.com/product?p_id=611815

  • Although tubes add their own euphonic coloration (the warmth, depth, and organic richness you hear in older jazz recordings, and which I personally like) some guys just prefer the more pristine analog solid-state tonality - if you're more inclined in that direction I get excellent results with my Godin CW II and a (discontinued) Fender Frontman 212R, and at $150-200 for a good used one it's a cheap way to get major headroom and "big-clean" full-range tone with classic "blackface Twin" looks:


I didn't mention it, but I already own a Monoprice like the one you listed. I never really though of it as a clean amp though. Interesting thoughts!
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Old 01-07-2021, 06:16 PM
sam.spoons sam.spoons is offline
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Polytone is the classic, Roland JC120 is the other, newer, classic but the AER Compact 60 definitely gets the job done too. Basically you want loud with lots of clean headroom. I have a Compact 60 II which is great with my acoustics and the jazz box.
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