Anyone know if Dr. Z has plans to do a Stingray Jr.? If this amp is really as good as it sounds in Brad's clips, I think the Stingray & a low wattage version with early, low volume breakup & lower price point will sell like crazy. Kind of like the Maz Sr./Maz Jr. or Mazerati/Ghia thing.
Last Edit: Feb 8, 2006 9:03:47 GMT -7 by guitarman1
Blonde MAZ Jr. NR 1x12, Fuchs ODS-50 head Mesa 2x12 Slant Recto Cab, Celestion G1265 re-issues Strat-O-Partster Tele-Partster PRS Custom 22
How about a Stingray, or any of the other big amps, with a 1/2 power switch?
I personally hate half power switches.
You still have that big power transformer and an output transformer that will not saturate properly. It is almost as bad as pulling two of four ourput tubes in a class A/B amp ... it generally backfires giving you even more clean headroom at lower levels as now the transformers are even more out of spec as to their design intensions.
If anything, maybe a two output tube version as the Vox AC-15 was to the Vox AC-30 but PLEASE .... no 1/2 power switch!
Post by Phil (aka Phil) on Feb 8, 2006 14:45:01 GMT -7
I already "asked" for exactly this in another thread, "Z's Id like to see...". No word from the Doc yet. Also, as I think Myles will agree, the Stingray sounds much better in person than on any sound clip. Myles once told me that he hates sound clips; that it's like test driving a car from the back seat. I didn't pre-order my Stingray based on any sound clip; I knew that if the Doc was going to design an amp based on the Vox AC30/4 that it would be killer. No sound clip in the world could have prepared me for how great this amp feels.
As far as a Stingray Jr., that could be a super idea .... the Vox AC-15 side of the coin.
We have had a Stingray at GT for about a week at this point and have played with it every day including both days of last weekend. It always amazes me how the Doc can make all these different amp yet have them all sound and play differently. Anybody that thinks "EL-84 cathode biased amps sound sort of the same" .... well ... just show them three or four different Z amps and they will rethink that viewpoint.
The amp still amazes me as to how effective and versitile that single tone control and the cut control work so well together. You can make the amp as dark or bright as you want and anywhere in between. But .... you can also make the amp dark, bring in less cut, and not have it muddy or muffeled (if that makes any sense).
At this point I have tried various phase inverters and LOTS of EF86 tubes. The EF86s have been a Motorola, Svetlana, Sovtek, GEC, Mullard, Amperex, Dario Miniwatt and some USA branded ones that were Mullard produced. I wanted to try some "off spec" EF86s so I had to go to the Sovteks which are generally way off spec in both directions. I have some test standards that are above and below spec and also known to be problematic in Matchless DC-30 amps, 65 Amps London, and my Victoria Sovereign. These "bogus tubes" generally are usable in a Z-28, Route 66, KT-45, and Delta 88 if the spec is off and will stand up to the tube being pretty microphonic.
The Stingray is not too picky about EF86 tubes. It is MUCH less picky than the three amps mentioned above (the non-Z amps). Then again ... I have pulled EF86s out of Vox AC-30/4 and AC-15 amps that were original and still fine. The Stingray does not ask the front end for monster gain or crunch. It leaves the crunch and rock tones to the output tubes.
But .... the Stingray does really show different colors with high end articulate EF86 tubes. The Mullard was a real winner in the amp and that is why I was surprised when I saw that KCA had these for sale at $50. I still think Mike at KCA made a boo boo in his pricing. The Dario Miniwatt that came in the amp tested and traced right on spec. It sounds great but different than the Mullard. The Mullard with a Strat has a more lively response that is a bit more highish endish in a nice way when you are about half way up the Strat neck. The Dario does this more in the lower 5-6 frets toward the nut. Is one better than the other? Nope. Just different. Some may not hear it but just about any player will feel it and how the amp responds when they play. With my LP the amp loved the GEC (which was a gift from Terry Guder as a side note).
My Turner that has an active pickup and parametric EQ liked an Amperex EF86 the most. Even though this tube was at the same spec as the others it did not mind being hit with a hellishisly high signal out of the Turner guitar. (side note ... I think Terry Guder has played this guitar if I am not mistaken and knows how hot the output is).
Z amps .... the more simple they look the harder they are to figure out as far as all the aspects. When there is a clean design that is a classic take on things you find subtle changes make big differences. If you don't care for an amp that is something of a fine artist brush then grab a Marshall DSL or TSL, a 5150 or 5152, or Mesa Recto. Bogner 101's fit into this too. Great amps with lots of gain and channel switching ability too but when you march electrons through a long complex path something has to give. These amps are great for many types of musical styles and amps such as this Stingray do other things. In the end it is all user taste. I drive a Scion these days .... others drive big pickups and others BMW 745's or Dodge Magnums. Personal stuff, personal preference.
Amps are sometimes more important than our significant others in a way. I have been able to change wives three times but have some amps today that I bought in Junior High School! The Stingray is one of those "keeper" amps, as is a great Vox AC-15 or Vox AC-50 .... if you could accept tossing the AC-30/4 and AC-30/6 TB out of the decision.
Wouldn't 2 less el84s change the overall feel/response of the amp? Granted, I'm sure the doc can tune/build a 2-el84 stingray with the feel/response of the mantaray...
But I've always gone under the impression that making a half wattage version of something isn't as simple as just offering the amp with 2 less output tubes (and perhaps a different output transformer)...
It brings to mind the comments that people make when comparing a 100watt marshall to its smaller 50-watt brother.
Would a 15-watt stingray bring the same mojo as a 30-watt...for us bedroom wankers that do the ocassional jam with buddies?
I guess one way to determine if a 15-watt amp can hang with a 30-watt big brother is to go to (shudder) guitar center and compare an AC-15 with an AC-30 (if they even have them to play among the crates and line6s)...
Unfortunately, I've only experienced either the 100watt offerings of Marshall, Peavey, Carvin (back in my hair metal days)....or the 2-bulb fun of 18watt-esque amps, like the Ghia or the matchless lightning...So I'm just babbling...
Also, I suspect that the ef86 from end of a 'baby Manta' would differentiate it, tone-wise from the Maz18 or the ghia...enough that anyone with 1 or both amps would possibly want one...
flem, please if you can, describe the differences between the Sting and the Maz...I'm desperately curious....
I need to take a long drive to the nearest Z dealer (like freaking 3-4 hours) with a wad of cash...and just play em...but I'm very curious to hear what your thoughts on the maz was, and what lead you to buy it...