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  1. #101

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    Congrats on the original mesa .50 caliber...not to be confused with the .50 caliber plus..which used 6l6 power tubes...the original uses 4 el84s...like a vox ac30...i've always given much credit to mesa for being one of/if not the first (80's-90's) amp company to use the then forsaken voxy el84 tube in their amps...the studio 22 as well

    advice tho...4 el84's can run hot...make sure the amp is well ventilated..and watch if pushing it hard that it doesn't get too hot...test, check or change out the power tubes regularly too..as they are attached directly to the pcb circuitboard...and if one fries, it can take out a large number of components on the board with it!!!...the peavey delta blues 30 has a similar problem!!

    lastly despite the .50 name..4 el84s put out about 30 watts max...a highly efficient speaker like a celestion gold would work wonders with it

    el84s are amongst my fave power tubes ever...clean and chimey, but with beautiful smooth breakup when pushed

    congrats & enjoy..

    cheers

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #102

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    Mesa Boogie Amps For Jazz-6b0aa707-cbe1-4bb4-8aa7-4a3a3ab14f34-jpg

    I used to be able to get a passable jazz tone from any of my Mesa rigs. Sadly, they were such overkill that I sold them all. That’s a 2:95 at the very bottom behind my SAS (also sold, sadly)

  4. #103

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    Quote Originally Posted by neatomic
    congrats on the original mesa .50 caliber...not to be confused with the .50 caliber plus..which used 6l6 power tubes...the original uses 4 el84s...like a vox ac30...i've always given much credit to mesa for being one of/if not the first (80's-90's) amp company to use the then forsaken voxy el84 tube in their amps...the studio 22 as well

    advice tho...4 el84's can run hot...make sure the amp is well ventilated..and watch if pushing it hard that it doesn't get too hot...test, check or change out the power tubes regularly too..as they are attached directly to the pcb circuitboard...and if one fries, it can take out a large number of components on the board with it!!!...the peavey delta blues 30 has a similar problem!!

    lastly despite the .50 name..4 el84s put out about 30 watts max...a highly efficient speaker like a celestion gold would work wonders with it

    el84s are amongst my fave power tubes ever...clean and chimey, but with beautiful smooth breakup when pushed

    congrats & enjoy..

    cheers
    Thanks Neatomic,

    My amp is all original including tubes and speaker (I got it from the original owner with the original paperwork, cover and foot switch for $300). I use it maybe once a month for jazz gigs where it is pushed pretty lightly and always well ventilated. She is a great sounding tube amp and rivals my other tube amp (1964 Fender noverb Princeton with a JBL D-110F) in every way. The Mesa has fat tone when I use a humbucker equipped Gibson electric with her.

    If a blues, rock or fusion gig came my way (I have not played one of those in years TBH, I have been too busy playing jazz), the Mesa is in the arsenal ready to do the job (along with my Strat. Les Paul, overdrive pedal and chorus pedal!)

  5. #104

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greentone
    Try a Fillmore
    Have you tried one? the reviews on YouTube don't have any jazz players at all... I was thinking of a mark v25 to supplement my princeton

  6. #105

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    Quote Originally Posted by bleakanddivine
    These hardwood Mark IIIs were beautiful jazz amps, supplied with free herniated discs.
    I had the hardwood one with the basket weave. Kept it in the anvil road case with casters. It rolled better than it carried. Great amp though.

  7. #106

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    The 4xEL84 amp had quite a confusing history. It was originally going to be called the .44 Caliber (was in an 80's catalogue listing). The Studio .22 represented being half of that. Not sure why they put the Caliber into production as a .50. I owned the Plus with 6L6s and that was a cool amp for sure and seemed to put out more like 100 watts. Either way, the EL84 power amp configuration is still around today as the Dyna-Watt 30 and has appeared in the F, the Rocket 44 (there's that number again), the Lonestar Special and even the Mark V (35 watt version) and probably elsewhere. They seem to blur the number of watts a bit. I don't think it matters as they are all louder than hell. My little Rocket 44 1x12 can easily keep up with Marshall stacks if you get up off the floor.

  8. #107

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    Quote Originally Posted by patshep
    Have you tried one? the reviews on YouTube don't have any jazz players at all... I was thinking of a mark v25 to supplement my princeton
    I run my MkV25 through a open back 1x12 pine cab with a Celestion A type speaker. Sounds great for jazz tone.
    Use the Fat mode on the clean channel and roll down the treble. No graphic EQ. Not very much gain. It has to be the most versatile small amp ever.

  9. #108

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    I have an F-30 combo and an RV25 head with matching 1x12. Always loved Mesas. The clean channel on the RV25 is great as is the built in reverb. Would love to add a MkV25 head to my collection some day.

  10. #109

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    I own (and love) the Fillmore 25. It is has a simpler layout than most other Boogies (I used to own a Mark III), has one of the cleanest clean sounds imaginable, but it can also get a lot of blues and rock drive, if desired. Here is a clip of Mimi Fox playing jazz through a Fillmore 25 on the Clean Setting (which also sounds nice with a regular acoustic guitar)


  11. #110

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    I've been thinking about these for a while, but all the clips are classic rock, stumbled across this, sounds good for jazz

  12. #111

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    Mimi always sounds good!

  13. #112

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    An incredibly musical player, with bold harmonics and challenging left-hand fingerings. But I need a second run with headphones to judge the tone, which is quite personal and not what I expect from a jazz amp.

  14. #113

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    Here's another video:


  15. #114

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    The tone in the first video is not what I would consider ideal jazz tone, sort of boxy maybe. The second video sound much better to me. I don't know if the settings are different, different EQ, or what, but I like it better. I'm only referring to the perceived tone of the amp, not the playing, which is obviously first-rate.

  16. #115

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    What does "boxy" even mean?
    I like her tone in both videos. Seems the same to me. I like a more articulate tone for jazz and the Fillmore has it. But so does my MkV25.

  17. #116

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    Quote Originally Posted by DRS
    What does "boxy" even mean?
    I like her tone in both videos. Seems the same to me. I like a more articulate tone for jazz and the Fillmore has it. But so does my MkV25.
    Mesa just came out with the Mark V 25 in a combo version (previously only available as a head). I have the Mark V 35, and I like it a lot!

    Mesa Boogie Amps For Jazz-mark525-combo-frt-hr-jpg
    Mesa Boogie Amps For Jazz-mark525-combo-back-hr-jpg
    Last edited by helios; 04-18-2020 at 12:50 PM.

  18. #117

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    Quote Originally Posted by DRS
    What does "boxy" even mean?
    I like her tone in both videos. Seems the same to me. I like a more articulate tone for jazz and the Fillmore has it. But so does my MkV25.
    Beat on the side of an empty cardboard box. That is what boxy sounds like: sound trapped within and emanating from a box. The opposite is open-sounding and airey: sound that emanates from a box but does not sound like it comes from a box. It breaks free of the box.

  19. #118

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    I want a V 35 combo
    the V 25 combo has been out for a long time

  20. #119

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    I a solutely love most of Mesa Boogies amps! But as I've said I. The past at 63 years old and a Pro musician. I'm not in the furniture moving business, lol!

    If I had the luxury of a roadie and playing at louder volumes,Mesa Boogie all the way for me. Plus I always have felt Randall Smith is an honest broker and stands 110% by his products. And I remember owning one the first Mk 1 Boogies and calling him about an issue. Same with all of the problems fixes and mods since 1975

  21. #120

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    I dunno Jads... that little V25 is only 24 lbs. Lightest Mark Combo ever. Put a neo 10 in there and it's about the same as my ToneBlock in Dock12. Not the same kind of headroom of course.

    I'm a fellow early adopter. Bought my first in 76. I talked to Randall on the phone late 75 and he said I should wait a couple extra months for the new one that was coming on line. I don't think they'd even adopted the Mark thing at that point. And that was about the heaviest Mark ever. 100 watts and I went with the Altec. Fortunately it was really a stage amp that lived in the truck or the practice studio. Road case with wheels. Only had to lift it about twice a day. And we did have a roadie/sound guy to help.

    I was just trying to remember how I paid for it and how it arrived. Lived in Portland Or at the time. I know I didn't have a credit card so I guess I mailed him a money order. The whole thing took about 4 months if I remember right. Built to order in those days. So much easier to buy stuff now. Not sure that's a good thing or not!

  22. #121

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    Quote Originally Posted by ccroft
    I dunno Jads... that little V25 is only 24 lbs. Lightest Mark Combo ever. Put a neo 10 in there and it's about the same as my ToneBlock in Dock12. Not the same kind of headroom of course.

    I'm a fellow early adopter. Bought my first in 76. I talked to Randall on the phone late 75 and he said I should wait a couple extra months for the new one that was coming on line. I don't think they'd even adopted the Mark thing at that point. And that was about the heaviest Mark ever. 100 watts and I went with the Altec. Fortunately it was really a stage amp that lived in the truck or the practice studio. Road case with wheels. Only had to lift it about twice a day. And we did have a roadie/sound guy to help.

    I was just trying to remember how I paid for it and how it arrived. Lived in Portland Or at the time. I know I didn't have a credit card so I guess I mailed him a money order. The whole thing took about 4 months if I remember right. Built to order in those days. So much easier to buy stuff now. Not sure that's a good thing or not!
    With so much labor outsourced to foreign countries these days, it's fantastic that Randall Smith has kept production in Petaluma CA, and the prices for his simi-boutique amps are fairly reasonable, IMHO! Also, he is an innovator and doesn't remain content to rest on his laurels! He is willing, as he always has been, to push the envelope!

  23. #122

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    He was a boutique amp maker before there were amp boutiques. Hold on... are amp boutiques a thing?

  24. #123

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    That's the thing I still need pole th of Clean headroom. So due to weight I switched over to Quilters Aviator amps and TB202 head. Very pleased with my Clean Tone and that take pedals like a champ!

  25. #124

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    Considering a Mesa combo—.50 Caliber, 5:25 Express, Heartbreaker—for home practice level—looking for something in the blackface tone family. I’ve got tweed covered.

    I am sensitive to boomy bass and hiss. Do the higher-powered Mesas hiss a lot even at low volume?

    I like the full sound of 12” speakers but in my experience they can be difficult to EQ out the boominess of an archtop without detrimentally affecting the rest of the sound.

    There are some used 1x10 5:25 Express amps available on Reverb. These amps use EL84 power tubes, which I don’t have any experience with, but some contributors to this thread seem to like them for jazz.

  26. #125

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    I like playing the 175 through the Mesa Rosette. Here’s a clip of Mimi Fox playing her Heritage through one.


  27. #126

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    Quote Originally Posted by wzpgsr
    Considering a Mesa combo—.50 Caliber, 5:25 Express, Heartbreaker—for home practice level—looking for something in the blackface tone family. I’ve got tweed covered.

    I am sensitive to boomy bass and hiss. Do the higher-powered Mesas hiss a lot even at low volume?

    I like the full sound of 12” speakers but in my experience they can be difficult to EQ out the boominess of an archtop without detrimentally affecting the rest of the sound.

    There are some used 1x10 5:25 Express amps available on Reverb. These amps use EL84 power tubes, which I don’t have any experience with, but some contributors to this thread seem to like them for jazz.
    My Mesa .50 Caliber sounds great at all volumes, has very little noise at idle and is a surprisingly great amp for jazz. They are not very expensive and have fallen out of favor with the rocker/gainiac crowd as there is only one set of tone controls for both channels. I pretty much only use the clean channel in any case (the high gain channel would be of use for an electric blues gig where having the same tone profile on both channels would be fine).

  28. #127

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    I used to carp that Mesa Boogie meant (M)idrange (B)ox. They are generally so midrangey.

    Well, for jazz, that's good. Just stay away from the high gain. Run clean those amps really boogie...for jazz.

  29. #128

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greentone
    I used to carp that Mesa Boogie meant (M)idrange (B)ox. They are generally so midrangey.

    Well, for jazz, that's good. Just stay away from the high gain. Run clean those amps really boogie...for jazz.
    Agreed that they are more midrangey than a scooped Fender, but IMO, that is in a good way and indeed they really do boogie for jazz when run clean.

    My EL-84 equipped .50 Caliber sounds great with it's stock Celestion speaker for jazz.

    My 6L-6 equipped Mark 4 sounded great for jazz with it's stock EV speaker, but when I tried a Mesa branded Celestion speaker, I was disappointed.

  30. #129

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    I also had a .22 Caliber Studio for years. It was a wonderful amp. Great at jam sessions, but they were more rock and fusion or sort of new age world music stuff.

    But for chord melody jazz, I could never get it dialed back enough. The sound was always right there, too present, notes coming through the speaker almost before I picked them.

    But it was so sweet in so many other ways. I miss it.

  31. #130

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    Agreed that they are more midrangey than a scooped Fender, but IMO, that is in a good way and indeed they really do boogie for jazz when run clean.

    My EL-84 equipped .50 Caliber sounds great with it's stock Celestion speaker for jazz.

    My 6L-6 equipped Mark 4 sounded great for jazz with it's stock EV speaker, but when I tried a Mesa branded Celestion speaker, I was disappointed.
    I thought my Mark 4 was a great jazz amp, but just overkill (and way too heavy) for my jazz gigs.

    Quote Originally Posted by Flat
    I also had a .22 Caliber Studio for years. It was a wonderful amp. Great at jam sessions, but they were more rock and fusion or sort of new age world music stuff.

    But for chord melody jazz, I could never get it dialed back enough. The sound was always right there, too present, notes coming through the speaker almost before I picked them.

    But it was so sweet in so many other ways. I miss it.
    Had one of those too, and agree that it's a very aggressive amp. Enjoyed it immensely but didn't use it for jazz either.

    Danny W.
    Last edited by Danny W.; 08-24-2020 at 07:54 PM.

  32. #131

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    Quote Originally Posted by Danny W.
    I thought my MKIV was a great jazz amp, but just overkill (and way too heavy) for my jazz gigs.


    Danny W.
    The weight is why I no longer own my Mark IV, but it sure sounded great for jazz. There are days when i miss it, but then I remember that I am about to turn 63

  33. #132

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    Haven't quite closed the deal yet, but looks like I will be trading a recently acquired Bogner New Yorker for a Lone Star in a custom aftermarket 1x12 combo cab. It runs 6L6 by default, and is switchable between 50 and 100 watts. It has an additional lower power "tweed" mode which runs ~60% of full power. It can also run it with 6V6s when it's in "tweed" mode, or even EL34s in regular mode. This was not all the direction I was planning to go—I've been looking at satiating my fix for blackface sound with a Gries 5 watter, for crying out loud—but it seems a bit fortuitous that this trade offer appeared out of the blue after I started asking questions about Mesa in here earlier today. So I may be stepping into the Mesa ring after all. The current owner of the amp says the master volume is great, that the amp sounds good even at home volumes, and that it doesn't have any hissing issues (I'm really sensitive to hiss, noise floor, etc.).

  34. #133

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    Does MB publish a price list ? Is this Rosette their only ss model and their least expensive ?

    Thanks.....

  35. #134

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    Quote Originally Posted by wzpgsr
    Haven't quite closed the deal yet, but looks like I will be trading a recently acquired Bogner New Yorker for a Lone Star in a custom aftermarket 1x12 combo cab. It runs 6L6 by default, and is switchable between 50 and 100 watts. It has an additional lower power "tweed" mode which runs ~60% of full power. It can also run it with 6V6s when it's in "tweed" mode, or even EL34s in regular mode. This was not all the direction I was planning to go—I've been looking at satiating my fix for blackface sound with a Gries 5 watter, for crying out loud—but it seems a bit fortuitous that this trade offer appeared out of the blue after I started asking questions about Mesa in here earlier today. So I may be stepping into the Mesa ring after all. The current owner of the amp says the master volume is great, that the amp sounds good even at home volumes, and that it doesn't have any hissing issues (I'm really sensitive to hiss, noise floor, etc.).
    Lone Stars are great amps...but like many Boogies, are heavy. 72 lbs according to their spec sheet.

    https://www.mesaboogie.com/amplifier...x12-combo.html

  36. #135

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gitfiddler
    Lone Stars are great amps...but like many Boogies, are heavy. 72 lbs according to their spec sheet.

    https://www.mesaboogie.com/amplifier...x12-combo.html
    This one is in a rebuilt pine cab with a neodymium speaker. 40 lbs.!

  37. #136

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    Quote Originally Posted by helios
    Mesa just came out with the Mark V 25 in a combo version (previously only available as a head). I have the Mark V 35, and I like it a lot!

    Mesa Boogie Amps For Jazz-mark525-combo-frt-hr-jpg
    Mesa Boogie Amps For Jazz-mark525-combo-back-hr-jpg
    I swore I'd never own another tube amp when I sold my Mark 4 17 years ago, but that Mark 5-25-10" keeps calling to me.

    Danny W.
    Last edited by Danny W.; 08-24-2020 at 07:53 PM.

  38. #137

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    Lots of tone shaping in that pint-sized 24 lb combo! With a little trial & error, you'll get some great tones Danny, an you won't injure your back toting it either! Jeff

  39. #138

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    I have a IIC+ simul-class combo with EV 12" speaker that is capable of a nice clean jazz tone or the Larry Carlton saturated distortion tone. However, if you want really saturated distortion, you have to run the gain high enough that you will have a little dirt in the clean tone when you hit the strings hard. And if you want a really REALLY clean tone, you have to turn the gain down enough that you won't be able to dial in endless sustain on the distortion tone.

    I should mention that it is totally stock; instead of doing the plate-current resistor mod, I paid big bucks to stockpile five matched pairs of Euro-made Sylvania 6L6s when GE closed their USA plant. The Sylvanias don't have quite the warmth and bottom end of the USA-made GE 6L6s that this amp was designed around, but they are close enough. I think that nowadays you might be able to get NOS GE 6L6s a bit more easily than you could back in the 80s or 90s when I purchased my Boogie power-tube stash :-)

    That said, I don't gig with this amp any more (aside from the fact that nobody gigs any more!) for a number of reasons that include wanting to avoid f--ing it up for some dive-bar rock gig. The other reasons include the fact that I actually get a better jazz tone more easily out of any of a few other amps I have, such as a couple of Fender tweeds or the custom eq'ed patch that started life as a fender emulation in my multi-fx unit.

    Make no mistake, you can have my IIC+ simul ONLY when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers... but it is not my first choice as a jazz amp. It is one kickass amp in every way, but there's that inherent compromise between dialing in the saturated distortion vs the mellow jazz tone. You CAN have the best of both worlds by dialing in enough gain for saturated distortion and then backing off the volume control on your guitar (or via a master vol pedal) and picking less aggressively when you want a clean tone.

    This amp was designed before the canonical "modern rock" tone, too, but that's pretty easily obtained from any number of pedals or fx units. Like the Boss ME-XX boxes...

    HTH

    SJ

  40. #139

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    This one was recorded live a couple years ago with 335 through a Mesa Mark I RI loaded with Jensen Blackbird.
    Pinch of delay (MXR Carbon Copy) and tremolo (Oceanfx Tremalicious) at times.
    No tricks, no rehearsal, just a good ole improvised set. (shameless plug)

    https://music.apple.com/us/artist/zach-hahn/1491446301

  41. #140

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    I recently got a used 50 caliber plus, and it has a great jazz tone, not as classic as a Fender, but with more control. you can turn the mids up, or keep it blackface, I don't use the distortion on it at all... i do use a Tube Screamer in front of it for just a little breakup, and warmth... I like it as much as a princeton or deluxe reverb, and way better than a solid state, but less portable
    I'm thinking of getting an Eminence Deltalite 12 to put in it which will make it a tad lighter, and probably sound smoother than the celestion
    Last edited by patshep; 09-20-2020 at 09:31 AM.