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Cheap Tube Head?

Postby Ewadeiry » Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:22 am

Hey guys, I'm looking for a cheap tube head, under $300 and preferably under $200 (definitely don't care if it's used) that I can plug into a 1x12 or 2x12 I'll buy in the future. Needs to be loud enough to play with a band and at gigs. Thanks!
Oh, and I play all genres of music. I'm going to need a good clean tone, and I don't really care about the dirty channel because if it's no good I'll just run pedals through it.
Cheers.
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Re: Cheap Tube Head?

Postby The Korff » Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:30 am

SOS's sister publication Performing Musician reviewed one of these many years ago:

https://www.gear4music.com/Bugera-Guitar-Amps/Amp-Heads

I forget which one, but it got a very decent review (by Bob Thomas, I believe, who knows what he's talking about). They're cheap as chips too.
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Re: Cheap Tube Head?

Postby ef37a » Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:54 am

Don't know about the rest of the range* but the Bugera G5 Infinium 5W is a pretty close rip of the Blackstar HT-5. However the "Bugger" is said to be 5W "class A" and B's amp is class AB fixed biased and it is THAT which gives its distinctive tone (and power, it can push out 10W and do a pub into a good speaker)

I suspect that G5 is in fact simply cathode biased and they are claiming some revolutionary new valve management circuitry that was actually invented sometime pre WWll! I am also not at all sure you can GET five watts from a 12BH7 cathode biased?

With just one pre amp valve it must use some solid state circuitry, as indeed does the HT-5.

*But I bet someone will recognise the other ripoffs. They are a subsidiary of Behringer but are fooling nobody!
The Buggers also do an even closer copy of the HT-20.

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Re: Cheap Tube Head?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat Apr 13, 2019 11:34 am

5 watt valve amps are great (I have an Epic VJ and did have an HT-5, both fantastic in their own way). I have even used the VJ on gigs with a live drummer but if you want clean headroom then, realistically, you need 20 watts (well, I use an '18 watt' combo with a very efficient speaker).
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Re: Cheap Tube Head?

Postby ef37a » Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:19 pm

Sam Spoons wrote:5 watt valve amps are great (I have an Epic VJ and did have an HT-5, both fantastic in their own way). I have even used the VJ on gigs with a live drummer but if you want clean headroom then, realistically, you need 20 watts (well, I use an '18 watt' combo with a very efficient speaker).

Agreed, even in quite a small pub venue five watts is not going to give you loud cleans. I have read of a couple of guys that gig one atop a 4x12 loaded with V30 (looks daft I know!) and they say for rock in a pub it is easily loud enough.

When the HT-5 came out it garnered lots of praise but most reviewers could not help but add "not enough clean power". It is sold as a FIVE watt amp FCS!

Might as well sell my spammy soul completely (I get nowt for it) The latest range of the Artist (not the "ArtisAN") 15 and 30 are said to have been voiced differently from the older range of B's amps and even the 15 would I bet sort a modest pub.

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Re: Cheap Tube Head?

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:29 pm

The 18 Watt can do a very pleasing sort of ever so slightly crunchy clean at decent levels (into a V30) but it's not Fender Twin clean. Takes pedals brilliantly though.
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