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Matrix = sterile for me... need a tube power amp? Help !

Georgy

Inspired
So, today I put aside my trusty Matrix GT1500, and thought I'd substitute that for my Marshall 50w valve head.. Holy moley :eek: :shock :encouragement:

The Marshall absolutely destroyed!! Want that amp in the room feeling?? Look no further. That's nothing personal to the Matrix amp whatsoever; that's what happens when you go from solid-state power amps to valve power amps. It seriously came alive - I can't think of any other way to describe it. I used the Marshall purely as a power amp, nothing more, and it just sang.

NOTE: I recommend doing this if you wanna play loud/gig/band/band prac etc. At home, in the spare room where my gear is, the Matrix is more than suffice. Each to their own though.


For those who are not sure.. borrow a friend's head and run the axe as you currently do through the FX Return and get a box of tissues ready!! :mrgreen
 

yek

Moderator
Moderator
NOTE: I recommend doing this if you wanna play loud/gig/band/band prac etc.
I thought you wrote you're a bedroom player yourself?
Anyway, the Axe-Fx with power amp modeling + Matrix kills at gigging volume.
 

Georgy

Inspired
I thought you wrote you're a bedroom player yourself?
Anyway, the Axe-Fx with power amp modeling + Matrix kills at gigging volume.

I mostly am a bedroom player, however, I do play with mates and with a band from time to time.. Today, I tried it out today, and that was my conclusion.

I actually tried the Matrix + Axe-ii + 4x12 Bogner quad with a band a few weeks ago (with another guitarist who played through a 40w Orange valve amp + 2x12 cab.. I forget the one..) and even then, whilst I had plenty of volume from that setup, it still lacked.. I dunno.. depth? punch? air movement?? The OJ 40w had no issues keeping up with my rig. Mind you, the patches I used were my basic 'bedroom' patches so I tweaked them a bit because it's not the same when you use your existing patches in a band environment, at least that's what I discovered. It goes without say, in my experience, you need to tweak your patches when playing with a band, especially if playing with another guitarist who's playing through a valve head/cab. YMMV though, each to their own.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
So, today I put aside my trusty Matrix GT1500, and thought I'd substitute that for my Marshall 50w valve head.. Holy moley :eek: :shock :encouragement:

The Marshall absolutely destroyed!! Want that amp in the room feeling?? Look no further. That's nothing personal to the Matrix amp whatsoever; that's what happens when you go from solid-state power amps to valve power amps. It seriously came alive - I can't think of any other way to describe it. I used the Marshall purely as a power amp, nothing more, and it just sang.

NOTE: I recommend doing this if you wanna play loud/gig/band/band prac etc. At home, in the spare room where my gear is, the Matrix is more than suffice. Each to their own though.


For those who are not sure.. borrow a friend's head and run the axe as you currently do through the FX Return and get a box of tissues ready!! :mrgreen
If you use a tube power amp and don't turn off power amp modeling in the Axe-Fx you will get the impression that the tube power amp sounds "bigger" and "warmer". This is because the tube power amp will have more bass (and highs) than the solid-state power amp since a tube power amp's response follows the speaker impedance.

People will ALWAYS find that more bass and treble sounds "better" when listening alone but in a band context that tone will get lost. Speaker designers have been exploiting this fact of human perception for decades. Many "hi-fi" speakers exaggerate the bass and treble because the uneducated customer will think they sound "better". A truly flat speaker will sound dull in comparison to one with exaggerated lows and highs. Over time, however, those exaggerated frequencies lead to fatigue. It's only in comparison that exaggerated bass and treble sound "better". In an isolated context this aspect of human perception is not evident.
 

REDD

Power User
Whatever sounds better is better, right?

If you use a tube power amp and don't turn off power amp modeling in the Axe-Fx you will get the impression that the tube power amp sounds "bigger" and "warmer". This is because the tube power amp will have more bass (and highs) than the solid-state power amp since a tube power amp's response follows the speaker impedance.

People will ALWAYS find that more bass and treble sounds "better" when listening alone but in a band context that tone will get lost. Speaker designers have been exploiting this fact of human perception for decades. Many "hi-fi" speakers exaggerate the bass and treble because the uneducated customer will think they sound "better". A truly flat speaker will sound dull in comparison to one with exaggerated lows and highs. Over time, however, those exaggerated frequencies lead to fatigue. It's only in comparison that exaggerated bass and treble sound "better". In an isolated context this aspect of human perception is not evident.
 

Jimmytwotimes

Experienced
I thought you wrote you're a bedroom player yourself?
Anyway, the Axe-Fx with power amp modeling + Matrix kills at gigging volume.
Totally agree with you yek- at stage volume it kills. I also find it doesn't get " lost" in the mix or with the band like others have said. Very happy with my matrix.
 

Jimmytwotimes

Experienced
If you use a tube power amp and don't turn off power amp modeling in the Axe-Fx you will get the impression that the tube power amp sounds "bigger" and "warmer". This is because the tube power amp will have more bass (and highs) than the solid-state power amp since a tube power amp's response follows the speaker impedance.

People will ALWAYS find that more bass and treble sounds "better" when listening alone but in a band context that tone will get lost. Speaker designers have been exploiting this fact of human perception for decades. Many "hi-fi" speakers exaggerate the bass and treble because the uneducated customer will think they sound "better". A truly flat speaker will sound dull in comparison to one with exaggerated lows and highs. Over time, however, those exaggerated frequencies lead to fatigue. It's only in comparison that exaggerated bass and treble sound "better". In an isolated context this aspect of human perception is not evident.

Which is exactly why companies like Bose are successful by selling " home theater" speakers that consist of basically a tweeter and a sub. Along with huge marketing budgets.
 

GreatGreen

Power User
Whatever sounds better is better, right?
Sometimes.

What sounds extra big and vibrant now might start to sound harsh and grating over the next 15-20 minutes.

And sometimes what sounds extra big and shimmery coming from a lone guitar cabinet might sound thin, woofy, flat and brittle in a mix.
 
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666was999

Power User
Whatever sounds better is better, right?
What sounds awesome at home often gets lost in the band mix. What sounds awesome in the band mix often sounds hard at home. The trick is to tweak sounds that do both jobs, but you don't notice at once that you have it there, it needs some rehearses and gigs and some different audio systems to get sure that a presets works everywhere. A sound that works in one situation only is worthless, isn't it?
 
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ps43203

Experienced
If your on a budget, get a peavey classic 50/50, has plenty of thump and the best bang for the buck. Closest thing to vht 2/50/2,
read the reviews, mine is old as hell, and I just re-tubed with jj el-84's and sounds killer, just like new again. Oh and speakers, mean
just as much as the power, try k-100's, or use what I have, v30's and t-75's in an x pattern, works for everything, almost. :)
 

Mixman

New Member
If you use a tube power amp and don't turn off power amp modeling in the Axe-Fx you will get the impression that the tube power amp sounds "bigger" and "warmer". This is because the tube power amp will have more bass (and highs) than the solid-state power amp since a tube power amp's response follows the speaker impedance.

People will ALWAYS find that more bass and treble sounds "better" when listening alone but in a band context that tone will get lost. Speaker designers have been exploiting this fact of human perception for decades. Many "hi-fi" speakers exaggerate the bass and treble because the uneducated customer will think they sound "better". A truly flat speaker will sound dull in comparison to one with exaggerated lows and highs. Over time, however, those exaggerated frequencies lead to fatigue. It's only in comparison that exaggerated bass and treble sound "better". In an isolated context this aspect of human perception is not evident.
So Cliff, this applies also to a tube power amp like the VHT 2/50/2? Should the power amp modelling be turned off with this too or is this only the case when running through a tube heads power section?
 

Tremonti

Fractal Fanatic
So Cliff, this applies also to a tube power amp like the VHT 2/50/2? Should the power amp modelling be turned off with this too or is this only the case when running through a tube heads power section?
Why would it matter? Tubes in power amp section of head is same thing really.... Just different layout function wise. Same concept would apply IMO
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
Whatever sounds better is better, right?
Not necessarily. What sounds "better" in an isolated context often sounds like mud in a group context.

An old tube guru once told me the reason he didn't put Negative Feedback controls on his amps was because the users would always turn it to zero because it sounds "better" (when you turn the negative feedback down in a tube amp you get lots more bass and treble). Then they would complain that their tone was getting lost in the mix.

Never underestimate the psychological impact of scooping the mids. It always sounds "better" at first but after a while it gets fatiguing and will make your tone get buried.
 

aziz

Power User
I just got a Marshall 9005 power amp and use it with a basic 1960 cab. I haven't compared this to a Matrix, but it weighs 59lbs so it has to be better, right? :D I guess I'm bored of being able to carry all my equipment in one go, these don't even fit in my car in one trip... :roll

 
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Jimmytwotimes

Experienced
Before you give up on ss power amps with the Axe, try a Bryston!
No doubt - Bryston makes amazing amps. I have a 9b I use for my home theater. But they are extremely heavy ( I believe mine weighs around 100 pounds) extremely expensive, and probably not very road worthy - plus I would be freaked out having it on stage considering the price tag ! :lol
 

joegold

Fractal Fanatic
No doubt - Bryston makes amazing amps. I have a 9b I use for my home theater. But they are extremely heavy ( I believe mine weighs around 100 pounds) extremely expensive, and probably not very road worthy - plus I would be freaked out having it on stage considering the price tag ! :lol
I'm not suggesting that most Bryston amps would be suitable in an Axe-FX rig.

But the 2B LP Pro, @ 200 watts into 8ohms bridged is quite doable for most folks for mono.
They're only 1u.
Not real lightweight, but nothing like a regular 2B or any other Bryston amp.
Probably be good to have two of them for stereo though.
Used, they go for between $400 and $700 on eBay.
 

crg123

Experienced
I'm changing it up and going with a Carvin TS100 and an Orange PPC212C. Can't wait to see how it sounds.
 
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