State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

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stevejamsecono
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State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by stevejamsecono » Sat Dec 22, 2018 3:06 pm

Hey Folks,

So I'm gonna be plunking down for a new amp next month and had my sights set on the Ceriatone 36W. It seems like all the sounds I loved in my old Avatar 18 (a 1974x variant), but slightly more headroom for live work (which would have been my one complaint with the Avatar). I've had a Ceriatone before (a JTM45 that was delightful), and aside from having to replace the OT, it was a great amp. That being said, with shipping being what it is I wouldn't be opposed to supporting some stateside/local builders if that could bring it in for a little cheaper.

Any recommendations?
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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by Telemnemonics » Sat Dec 22, 2018 5:51 pm

I guess you no longer have the 18w you liked?
A second 18w might be as good as a single 36w, but there are so many routes to vintage Marshall.

The VHT Standard 36 was a hand wired dbl 18w Marshall style build, but ta the time it didn't fit the market I guess.
There are lots of kit built and small shop built 18w as well as JTM45 and JMP 50 builds out there.
I have a Lil Dawg Pug 18w Marshall clone, plus two 18w TMB builds, all used and around $300- $350 a few years ago.
IMO the TMB version is a better amp with more tonal range as well as more gain.
One has PPIMV, but I don't use that much since it's not a high gain circuit, though it may make some players happy.

Any interest in building a kit?
Ever visit 18watt.com?
Their (forum members/ builders) 18w lite is a build you might find used, and those guys do 36w versions as well.

I don't remember the names of all the builders in the market but the 18w and the 45 have been very popular builds for more than a decade.
There seems to always be a garage builder somewhere offering hand wired JTM45s for under a grand.

There's also always the older Tweed Bassman RI amps that can do JTM45 pretty easily, since they are the same basic circuit.
You can also look for an old Traynor bass head which is pretty much a Marshall copy, but those have gotten cultishly popular and are no longer cheap unless you have a CL episode.

The Orange Tiny Terror was supposedly voiced to sound like the first AC/DC record, which is all early 100w Marshall.
The Dual Terror might fit the bill.

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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by stevejamsecono » Sat Dec 22, 2018 6:52 pm

Telemnemonics wrote:
Sat Dec 22, 2018 5:51 pm
I guess you no longer have the 18w you liked?
A second 18w might be as good as a single 36w, but there are so many routes to vintage Marshall.

The VHT Standard 36 was a hand wired dbl 18w Marshall style build, but ta the time it didn't fit the market I guess.
There are lots of kit built and small shop built 18w as well as JTM45 and JMP 50 builds out there.
I have a Lil Dawg Pug 18w Marshall clone, plus two 18w TMB builds, all used and around $300- $350 a few years ago.
IMO the TMB version is a better amp with more tonal range as well as more gain.
One has PPIMV, but I don't use that much since it's not a high gain circuit, though it may make some players happy.

Any interest in building a kit?
Ever visit 18watt.com?
Their (forum members/ builders) 18w lite is a build you might find used, and those guys do 36w versions as well.

I don't remember the names of all the builders in the market but the 18w and the 45 have been very popular builds for more than a decade.
There seems to always be a garage builder somewhere offering hand wired JTM45s for under a grand.

There's also always the older Tweed Bassman RI amps that can do JTM45 pretty easily, since they are the same basic circuit.
You can also look for an old Traynor bass head which is pretty much a Marshall copy, but those have gotten cultishly popular and are no longer cheap unless you have a CL episode.

The Orange Tiny Terror was supposedly voiced to sound like the first AC/DC record, which is all early 100w Marshall.
The Dual Terror might fit the bill.
Yeah, I had to sell it, sadly. I had an Avatar one.

So the reason why I'm not immediately going for another 18 is because if I had one complaint about my last one, is that the headroom was a little lacking for live stuff, so I'd like something with a bit more beef.

Sadly not confident in building one, but I agree, I've seen a lot of JTM45 kit builds on Reverb and stuff, so there's certainly options.
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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by wooderson » Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:23 am

Rockitt Retro - 1986 and 1987 bass/lead circuits. New price is $1400 (~$350 more than a new Ceriatone when I checked) but used (usually with some upgrades like the master volume) they're about the same price as a new Ceriatone.

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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by Telemnemonics » Sun Dec 23, 2018 10:56 am

I've owned a dozen vintage Marshalls and only have a 50w Bass head from 1974 now, plus the 18w clones.
I'd buy a Dr Z Remedy without trying it first if I had the money.
Even when I lived in Boston and NYC I could not try every amp in existence.

I'd look at a few Orange amps if you see them in stock, some of the Rockerverbs might get the sounds you want.
There is certainly there own sound going on but some models can do some pretty good vintage Marshall sounds.
Depending on what sort of Marshall sounds you want, which can be tailored to some degree by speaker choice.

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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by wproffitt » Sun Dec 23, 2018 12:13 pm

What is your budget, if you don’t mind me asking? There is a used Dr. Z Remedy for sale at Guitar Center for a little over a grand.
Mojotone does a fully assembled version of their JTM 45 kit for $1,199.
All of this still sounds pricier than a 70’s Traynor or something, though...

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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by stevejamsecono » Mon Dec 24, 2018 6:27 am

I've got around $1200 to play with (a bit more if I want to move my PV Classic 30 which has been my temp amp). Obviously happy to come under that. At the moment there's actually a Ceriatone JTM45 head on the local craigslist that I might try to gobble up and get a combo cab for.

Since we're doing this, tonal/other requirements:

- Sub 50 watts. 30 seems to be my sweet spot, but I've gigged with less and been ok.
- Pre-JCM800 Marshalls seem to be my speed. I really liked my 1974x and the JTM45 I had. Any more preamp gain then that and it sounds blocky to my ears.
- I try to keep an eye on portability, so it either needs to be fit in a 1x12 Combo or be one of those Cage/Lunchbox style heads. (for the record I've had an Orange TT and I didn't really like it from a gigging standpoint, but I know Frenzel makes some stuff in the 25 watt range that could be cool). I take cabs a lot more than I did a few years ago, so it doesn't need to be like... tiny.
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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by wooderson » Mon Dec 24, 2018 12:46 pm

The Friedman Dirty Shirley might be an option - JTM45-based, combo or small head.

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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by stevejamsecono » Wed Dec 26, 2018 2:03 pm

Some interesting suggestions so far. I kind of forgot about Dr. Z stuff, but the Remedy and Antidote both seem like they might be up my alley. I'm seeing the Remedy on GC's used for under a grand and I got a gift card to them so I certainly am gonna think about it...
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Re: State-side alternatives to Ceriatone/Old-Timey Marshall Circuits?

Post by wproffitt » Fri Dec 28, 2018 10:37 am

I’ve never played through a remedy, so I can’t say much that will be well-informed expect that DrZ has a great reputation and this seems like a lot of amp for the money. Gut shots if these are intriguing, too, because of how clean everything looks. It’s a world apart from, say, and old Fender.

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