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Topics - LPBII

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The Pickup Place / Revisiting the Super D
« on: November 09, 2023, 11:16:59 PM »
So I have this early 2000 PRS SE that I have never been sure what to do with. The neck is little cramped feeling around the first frets.  When I got it as just a beat up project guitar it had epiphone pickups which sounded like mud bombs.  It sounded pretty good with a set boutique PAF clones, but I decided to maybe try and sell it, so I bought some inexpesive a2 pickups to load in it. Not great sounding.

But I had a late 70's Super D and a 36th neck in the parts drawer and thought I would see how that set sounded in the guitar before sending it down the road.  I wasn't in love the Super D in this mahogany guitar by its self. Maybe a little too thick and grindy?

But I decided to see how it sat in rock mix. Oh boy, it rocks. It just sits in a rock mix so nicely. The harder you flog it, the harder it rocks.

The 36N sounded very good too. It is rapidly becoming my favorite neck humbucker.

I'm probably going to keep the guitar now and keep the Super D in it. It gives me a great option for a hard rock/metal application.

The Pickup Place / Virtual Solo for the win
« on: October 24, 2023, 10:11:48 PM »
I finally tracked down a VS about a month ago. 

I was afraid it would not sound stratty based on the B/LM/UM/T charts, but to my delight it sounds very stratty. The good kind of stratty, too. I dare say it sounds more stratty than some overwound true singles I tried.  It's an excellent bridge position solution if you need a traditional strat bridge pickup only with more power-and without too harsh treble.

I'm very pleased. I have HSS strats and Charvels, so I wanted to keep my SSS strat with a set of boutique true singles traditional sounding. The bridge single of the set sounds great but just did not have enough power. The VS was the solution. And the VS sounds great in its own right.

Also the notch position with the middle pickup has great "quack." It's also nice to not have the buzz on the more used bridge position when running through a hot amp. The middle pickup is RWRP, so I just moved the hum canceling from the bridge and middle together to the bridge position alone.

The Pickup Place / Is the Virtual Solo discontinued?
« on: July 19, 2023, 03:50:35 PM »
Seems to be out of stock everywhere. One place say's it is no longer available.

Gear Closet / Marshall DSL15H project
« on: October 07, 2015, 01:02:35 PM »
I have always liked the concept of a 6V6 Plexi, so when it became apparent that the DSL15H heads are availabe used for not a lot of money I snagged one with intention of modifying it.

The word on these amps was that the green channel is too clean and the red channel is too much gain. Well the DSL 15 watt only offers those two modes that nobody used on the old JCM2000 amps. What was the thinking here?  They probably expected the customer demographic for this amp to complain if the gain was not over the top, and the clean was not clean enough. The amp can be modded, but if your not into modding amps these amps are pretty much useless to players other than modern metal players in its stock form. I will be following the mods pioneered by the guys over at the Marshall Amp forum, and the My Les Paul Forum.  I hope nobody minds if I log the journey here.
First impressions:
 Not very loud.  Even through a 4x12 and cranked up it sounded not very loud.  There is no way this amp can be used with a live drummer at this volume level.  But then I noticed that the pentode-triode switch on the back was set to 1/2 power, or only 7.5 watts.
 In 15 watt mode it was totally different.  It can get loud. Exploring both channels through various knob settings and with both humbucker and single coil guitars revealed the following;
Green Channel. Way too clean and rather boring sounding.  I had to use the Green channel gain knob on ten at all times for it to have any character at all.  Turn it down to 9 and it became very weak and thin. I normally use PAFs and single coils and do not want to back to high output pickups.

There is a tone shift button that should never be used. It makes it sound like one of those 1970s Fender Twinns that we all hated. Even with the gain on ten the Green channel sounded "plinky".  It had no sustain.  Even more troubling, was that the bass notes were boomy through the Green Back loaded 4x12. It was a like a kick drum when ever a bass string was touched, especially with the Deep Switch engaged.  The Deep Switch was not usable with the 4x12 when using the Green Channel.

 Both the tone shift and the deep switches affect both the Green and Red channels.
Red Channel- What a fizzy mess! Bright, harsh, and fizzy, and waaaayyy too much gain. It is basically unusable. At least for me.  Even with the gain knob at only 9:00 it is too distorted. With very low gain settings the Red is still too distorted although thinner.  With low gain settings and the volume whacked up to ten, I think I can hear some mojo from the 6V6s under all that fizz. I think.
With the Green channel on ten/ten it is still too clean.  And boomy.
What I disliked most about the amp, though, was how stiff it both sounds and feels.  It does not breathe like a traditional tube amp at all. In fact despite the all tube signal path it feels almost solid state. Stiff and tight to the point of brittleness. The Red channel does not sing, and the Green channel is plinky sounding.
Many have modded the Red channel into something usable but left the Green channel alone. I will be modding both.

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