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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2017 10:49 am 
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Mark II

Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:50 am
Posts: 108
I have a Purple Stripe Coliseum that, really sounds amazing and I prefer a Hard Rock to Metal tone/"gain level". I bought it last year and when I got it, it still had the preamp tubes from the factory in it. It sounded absolutely terrible. So, I had a guy put preamp tubes in it, and he put JJ's which sounded really REALLY good but, I struggled with getting enough gain out of it until this week when, I checked the tubes and they were JJ ECC83s tubes. I traded them out for some old Mesa Brand (Made in Russia) 12AX7's that I had laying around. Now, the gain is through the roof and the tone is amazing but, I still need new ones.

Now, my question:
I had thought of selling it but, I can't find any good info on the monetary value of this thing. Then, I find out just how rare the Mark iii Coliseums really are, couple that with how good it sounds now and, suddenly I'm thinking that maybe I need to have this thing tuned up and dialed in to see just exactly what kind of amp I really have here. That's when I find out about this 3+ mod from Mike B that he'll do AFTER Mesa goes through it and checks and cleans everything. Now, that sounds like the way to go to me but, I'm not nearly as experienced nor, am I as knowledgeable as many of you on this board. So, I'd really like some input here.

Is the tone upgrade from the 3+ mod, worth the hassle and money to send this amp from TN to CA and back? And would you do that to a Coli?

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JP-2C
1985 Mark iii Simul Class Black Dot w/Red Stripe upgrade
1987 Mark iii Coliseum Purple Stripe
1987 Red Stripe Combo
Mark IVb
Rocket 4Forty
JP2C (#2)


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2017 2:01 pm 
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Mark II

Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2015 3:35 am
Posts: 60
Yes.

If you're keeping it - and you should - just do it.

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Too many Mesas and other amps, too many speakers, and far too many gain pedals and rack FX.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:13 pm 
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Location: Norfolk, CT
It will only sound better and destroy all other amps if you have it upgraded. All 180 watts shine when you're on stage, that's when it becomes a beast!

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JP2C, Mark llC++ DG, Mark IV-A/B.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:59 pm 
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Mark III
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:13 pm
Posts: 248
I like mine. One of my Colis had the "C+ mod" done to it before I owned it (apparently by Mike B), and while it's a different flavor than the other Coliseum, it can get in the same ballpark with the Presence raised up. For example, if the presence is on 4 on the standard Coliseum, the presence needs to be on 7 on the "C+ modded" Coliseum.

If I were you, I'd send it in to get checked out. Coliseums have a lot more low end than the normal "100 watt" Mark IIIs. If you're still not happy with it, I'm always looking to pick up another.

As far as prices go for them, I've always bought my Coliseums at the same going rate as the normal Mark IIIs. Even as rare as they are, they are a somewhat limited application. At most shows, you can't get them up to full roar without hearing a bunch of 4 letter words from the soundman, and with the current trend of lower-wattage amps, 180 watt behemoths are not in steady demand. So, that may explain some of prices of recently sold Coliseums. You can find better bedroom/stage amps with wattage that'll get you better results and more power tube compression.

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Mark III Coliseum KDRG | Mark III+ Coliseum KDRG | Mark III DRG | Mark IV (Head) | Mark IV (Combo) | Dual Rectifier Revision D | Dual Rectifier Revision G


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 9:38 am 
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Mark II

Joined: Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:50 am
Posts: 108
Thanks for the input guys.I'm going to do it. I may have to sell my beloved Tremoverb to do it but, I am going to keep it and get it Modded. Besides, who knows how much longer Mike B will be available to do this.

_________________
JP-2C
1985 Mark iii Simul Class Black Dot w/Red Stripe upgrade
1987 Mark iii Coliseum Purple Stripe
1987 Red Stripe Combo
Mark IVb
Rocket 4Forty
JP2C (#2)


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2017 12:52 pm 
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Mark III

Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2005 5:32 pm
Posts: 174
fretout wrote:
As far as prices go for them, I've always bought my Coliseums at the same going rate as the normal Mark IIIs. Even as rare as they are, they are a somewhat limited application. At most shows, you can't get them up to full roar without hearing a bunch of 4 letter words from the soundman, and with the current trend of lower-wattage amps, 180 watt behemoths are not in steady demand. So, that may explain some of prices of recently sold Coliseums. You can find better bedroom/stage amps with wattage that'll get you better results and more power tube compression.


Coli prices may dip, but will always rebound BIGLY from time to time, as they are simply legendary. Yes, they are dinosaurs, but they come from a time when everyone was pushing the limits to find out what was possible. Your bedroom is not a coliseum, so they are more than a bit overkill for home noodlers. The only time I ever use full power on my MkIII when recording is for cleans, because 15 Mesa watts are plenty for anything else. The lunchbox trend of today makes Colis seem a bit absurd, but they can always end up one day being like old "barn find" Ferraris. There is a guy on ebay right now asking $7,000 for his IIC++ Coli, and he started at $8,000! :shock: I don't think he can get in that neighborhood, but I am watching out of curiosity...

If I can one day acquire an all cream MkIIC++ or III+ Coliseum full stack, my life's work will be complete. 8)

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Quad Preamp/2:90
MkIII+ Simul-Class & MkIVb
Mark 4x12 Stack
Charvel 650 Custom/EMG85/SLV/SLV+SPC
Charvel San Dimas I Koa USA
Jackson Soloist Pro MIJ
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ESP Eclipse EMG 81/60
Ibanez UV7BK
Charvel 475 Exotic
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:50 pm 
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Mark III
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Joined: Tue Mar 10, 2009 7:13 pm
Posts: 248
MkIII Renegade wrote:
fretout wrote:
As far as prices go for them, I've always bought my Coliseums at the same going rate as the normal Mark IIIs. Even as rare as they are, they are a somewhat limited application. At most shows, you can't get them up to full roar without hearing a bunch of 4 letter words from the soundman, and with the current trend of lower-wattage amps, 180 watt behemoths are not in steady demand. So, that may explain some of prices of recently sold Coliseums. You can find better bedroom/stage amps with wattage that'll get you better results and more power tube compression.


Coli prices may dip, but will always rebound BIGLY from time to time, as they are simply legendary. Yes, they are dinosaurs, but they come from a time when everyone was pushing the limits to find out what was possible. Your bedroom is not a coliseum, so they are more than a bit overkill for home noodlers. The only time I ever use full power on my MkIII when recording is for cleans, because 15 Mesa watts are plenty for anything else. The lunchbox trend of today makes Colis seem a bit absurd, but they can always end up one day being like old "barn find" Ferraris. There is a guy on ebay right now asking $7,000 for his IIC++ Coli, and he started at $8,000! :shock: I don't think he can get in that neighborhood, but I am watching out of curiosity...

If I can one day acquire an all cream MkIIC++ or III+ Coliseum full stack, my life's work will be complete. 8)


That's very true. I play out, and I've heard my fair share of soundguys tell me to turn down.

While the barn-find-Ferrari analogy is certainly true with older muscle cars, I'm afraid it doesn't hold up regarding the Mark III Coliseum, simply because there's not enough of them out there to become a "sensation", and there isn't enough "Famous Recordings" out there to engrain them in everyone's ears. So, I don't see them catching fire on the used market anytime soon, but if they did, I'm totally okay with that.

I absolutely love my Coliseums. I really believe that they are about as close as Mesa ever came to replicating the touch sensitivity of the IIC+. The tone is there (and even has higher gain), and the touch sensitivity about the same as the IIC+, depending on the model IIC+ you compare it to. There's no doubting that the Coliseums are great amplifiers, that for years, flew under the radar, and over the last 8 years or so, have had more demand as they become harder to source. The great thing about them is the fact that they can be found for very fair prices. For example, I've never paid 4 figures for any of mine, and while I have seen about five of them listed for sale recently at $1,500, they have been listed for weeks.

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Mark III Coliseum KDRG | Mark III+ Coliseum KDRG | Mark III DRG | Mark IV (Head) | Mark IV (Combo) | Dual Rectifier Revision D | Dual Rectifier Revision G


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