Vintage Marshall vs Handwired Replica?

breakfastbuddy

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its not about the transformers , you can get quality , but why is a hand wired amp better ? to build a amp is like tuning a guitar , the parts have 20+- acurency . so if you dont change the curiut and tune it it will never sound the best , most of the sound is also in the speakers , so forget about the old marshalls , a lot of them dont sound that good , the really old ones have just a few gainstages , and you buy a pedal platform ,
 
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AustinPaul

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Well, I plan to keep all the gear I buy! Things don’t always work out, though.

I mostly agree with you. I do believe, though, that individual vintage amps take on a personality of their own as they age. So, if you’re lucky, you might get to play several amps and keep the one that sounds the best to your ears. And maybe it’s not technically “better” than a clone, but it’s maybe a better fit for your ears and your playing style. Of course, I haven’t had the opportunity to play several old JMPs, so I don’t know how true this belief might be.
Yep - exactly what I mean but didn't articulate well enough. It's the aging thing that is a massive variable. Every amp lives a certain life and one that is unique, just like us.

I mean, imagine how much fun it would be to gather around a table with some pints, grogs, mugs, or whatever - and come up with a list of all the things we think affect an amps tone over its lifetime. Would be looooong!
 

Plexitim

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Well, I plan to keep all the gear I buy! Things don’t always work out, though.

I mostly agree with you. I do believe, though, that individual vintage amps take on a personality of their own as they age. So, if you’re lucky, you might get to play several amps and keep the one that sounds the best to your ears. And maybe it’s not technically “better” than a clone, but it’s maybe a better fit for your ears and your playing style. Of course, I haven’t had the opportunity to play several old JMPs, so I don’t know how true this belief might be.
I have to agree. To my ears no two of the same model sound exactly the same.... And over time the musicality changes through use. A personality of their own as you mentioned - that sums it up nicely.

In my case I am fortunate to have a great Marshall tech who understands when I describe a certain song or amp characteristic, and he can apply mods to shape the sound to come forward. Don't need radical surgery cuz the core Marshall sound is the ultimate to me - just tweaks along the way.
 

sct13

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I have built 13 chassis of various Marshall clones I kept my first 1959 build with a Mercury Magnetics Iron install, and my first JTM 45 build, with Marstran clone Transformers, the rest were sold as commissioned amps of various models of marshal builds....almost all Marastran .....One or two Classic Tone (Which I did not recommend, and I was right) so no warranty......

I have to say that with all the available "vintage like" and Vintage parts out there, there is Nothing like the real thing.... And its defiantly the Iron calling out the tone (OT especially). The older drakes are clearer on the top end and are tighter on the bottom, ....the problems become pots and their values, Tubes and their manufacturing specs, some caps I had fell apart over time ....crap like that...

Overall, however my 68 Plexi is aggressive and slices through any band .....My 77 2203 will make your ears peel and bleed.....it s a fire breather and is very dangerous in the wrong hands, again the original Iron,,,,because I rebuilt the entire tag board due to a crack in the original ...it's more aggressive with newer parts, but the flavor comes from that OT.....
 

LoudStroud

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I've played thru a couple of Germino's that made my head turn. On one occasion at The Amp Show, I was sitting next to Earl Slick, who I think we'd all agree knows a Marshall tone, and we both looked at each other with that "Damn... that's it" look. If he thought so, then there ya go. But otherwise, the real thing (vintage) is hard to beat for all the reasons everyone has listed in this thread.
 

ajtonly1

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If you are a touring/gigging musician,
a good repro or clone is more than good enough

if you are are recording and want that pixie dust. a real deal, good Plexi is hard to beat.........flavors may vary
 

FleshOnGear

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I have to say that with all the available "vintage like" and Vintage parts out there, there is Nothing like the real thing.... And its defiantly the Iron calling out the tone (OT especially). The older drakes are clearer on the top end and are tighter on the bottom, ....the problems become pots and their values, Tubes and their manufacturing specs, some caps I had fell apart over time ....crap like that...

Overall, however my 68 Plexi is aggressive and slices through any band .....My 77 2203 will make your ears peel and bleed.....it s a fire breather and is very dangerous in the wrong hands, again the original Iron,,,,because I rebuilt the entire tag board due to a crack in the original ...it's more aggressive with newer parts, but the flavor comes from that OT.....
I believe you. I just recently got a ‘72, my first vintage Marshall, and the top is clearer than any other amp I’ve owned. It sounds and feels quick and responsive.
 

79 2203

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I’ve not played that many Marshall clones, and none from the likes of Germino, Metro etc, but I’ve not heard any amp that sounds as good as my 71 1987 and 79 2203. The Ceriatone 1987, 2203 and 2061 I owned were close though. You might even prefer the Ceriatone if you want a slightly tighter, punchier tone.

I feel the same way about my 68 and 69 Greenbacks and 77 Blackbacks. They just have a sound you’re not going to nail with a modern clone.
 

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