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PostPosted: Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:31 pm 
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Single Recto

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I own both and I recorded them the other day.

Posted the links on the Axe FX forum in a blind amp shoutout. Stiletto Ace won 8-2, with 2 picking no preference.

During the poll people not only did not know which amp was which, they did not know what the two amps were.

Ace on Crunch Channel
https://soundcloud.com/sarge117/ampa

JCM 800 2204
https://soundcloud.com/sarge117/ampb

People who say the Ace is too bright must also think the 2204 is too bright. Cause mine is certainly just as bright as the ace if not brighter.
I think it has to do with the fact that for a Mesa Boogie, it is VERY bright. However, compared to an old school Marshall, it isn't any brighter. If Marshall made the Stiletto I think it would be there top of the line amp.

In the clips above the treble on the JCM 800 is completely off.

The treble on the ace was at 9:00

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2014 9:21 am 
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Mark II

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Sounds awesome man!


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2014 2:59 pm 
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Bottle Rocket

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Yup, Boogie wins again.

I had a 2x12 JCM900 and a 1X12 DSL401 back in the day always played them both with the treble turned off.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2014 3:07 pm 
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Single Recto

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Fenderflame wrote:
Yup, Boogie wins again.

I had a 2x12 JCM900 and a 1X12 DSL401 back in the day always played them both with the treble turned off.


Yup.

treble and presence knobs are both completely off on the JCM 800

The crunch channel on the Ace is essentially a JCM 800, just not quite as bright as a jcm 800(go figure).

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2014 6:48 pm 
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Mark III
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A really good comparison. Both amps sound similar in their distortion characteristics however tonally there is a slight difference. The Mesa is slightly brighter and doesn't have as much bottom/low mid. Maybe it's the bottom/low mid that's causing it to sound slightly brighter and possibly a touch thinner. I think if you slightly up these lower frequencies the Mesa would be very close to the Marshall. As for the Marshall, it's not as bright as the Mesa on the top end.

I'd look at the EQ of both amps on a simple tone/spectrum analyser that you may have in your DAW. Compare the two and make adjustments to the EQ to get them close. I heard your comparison through a 2+1 speaker system (just a small sub for PC) and that's where I noticed the lower end of the Marshall.

In a nutshell:
-Marshall needs a bit of brightness (I like the lower end tone more)
-Mesa needs a bit more bottom

Very good shootout. Both amps sound great, regardless.

And ACDC rocks!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:11 pm 
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Single Recto

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Blaklynx wrote:
A really good comparison. Both amps sound similar in their distortion characteristics however tonally there is a slight difference. The Mesa is slightly brighter and doesn't have as much bottom/low mid. Maybe it's the bottom/low mid that's causing it to sound slightly brighter and possibly a touch thinner. I think if you slightly up these lower frequencies the Mesa would be very close to the Marshall. As for the Marshall, it's not as bright as the Mesa on the top end.

I'd look at the EQ of both amps on a simple tone/spectrum analyser that you may have in your DAW. Compare the two and make adjustments to the EQ to get them close. I heard your comparison through a 2+1 speaker system (just a small sub for PC) and that's where I noticed the lower end of the Marshall.

In a nutshell:
-Marshall needs a bit of brightness (I like the lower end tone more)
-Mesa needs a bit more bottom

Very good shootout. Both amps sound great, regardless.

And ACDC rocks!


Interesting take.

I had to be quick when recording cause I wanted to record both amps cranked and didn't have the house to myself for too long.

So I set the mic on the cab, eq each amp to taste and then recorded. I did not go back and try to make them sound the same.

As far as the Ace being brighter, I only hear that in the upper mids, in a way I think might cut through the mix better.

The treble and presence on the JCM 800 in this recording where completely off. They get ice picky if you turn them up and the mid control really behaves like what I expect a treble knob to.

They where they were both around 9:00 on the ace.

If I turn the treble and presence off on this ace it sounds too dark.

I did hear the touch more low end in the JCM 800. I could eq the Ace to have that, though I think it would get washed out in the mix.

Like I said earlier, if Marshall invented the Stiletto, it would be there flagship amp.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2014 5:26 pm 
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Mark IV
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Very, very close...
I also detect just a hint more low end and/or lower mids on the 800. But you really have to listen pretty close to tell.
And that is probably just from the tone control settings for each.

So would you say the Ace gives more range to the tone controls? Would hardly surprise me, being a Mesa.

Plus the Ace has multiple modes and therefore more tonal options, more versatile. And of course, killer cleans the Marshall can only wish for!
I saw a YouTube comparison between the Ace and a DSL 50w and they too were quite close.

I really like my Ace and believe it is, at least, somewhat better built than the Marshall.
I'm keeping mine! :)

Good job on the comparison!

Rock on! :D

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:43 pm 
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Single Recto

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Old BF Shred wrote:
Very, very close...
I also detect just a hint more low end and/or lower mids on the 800. But you really have to listen pretty close to tell.
And that is probably just from the tone control settings for each.

So would you say the Ace gives more range to the tone controls? Would hardly surprise me, being a Mesa.

Plus the Ace has multiple modes and therefore more tonal options, more versatile. And of course, killer cleans the Marshall can only wish for!
I saw a YouTube comparison between the Ace and a DSL 50w and they too were quite close.

I really like my Ace and believe it is, at least, somewhat better built than the Marshall.
I'm keeping mine! :)

Good job on the comparison!

Rock on! :D


I think if I was trying to EQ them the same I probably could have gotten that touch more low end out of the Ace.

However the JCM 800 overall probably does have a touch more low end. Not to be confused with the low end you get with an Electra Dyne (God I miss that amp) or dual rec. But a touch more then the stiletto. But that is not what you buy these amps for anyway, and neither has enough low end to break through in a mix with bass.

The controls on the Ace are definitely more responsive then the JCM 800.

I would definitely say the ace does have a larger range of tones, even on the crunch channel alone. You start throwing in spongy, the different clean modes, tight gain, fluid drive, tube rectified vs diode. It's not close.

However, if we are being fair, the JCM 800 tone is iconic. The JCM 800 invented that tone (I guess really the JMP's did, but you know what I mean).

Build quality. That is hard to say. This is an old Marshall. I have had this thing for a couple years, crank it ALL the time. Not a problem in the world. This thing is a freaking tank.

While the Ace has nice build quality, there is a lot more plumbing that can get clogged. Already had to bring it to a tech for some bad FET's.

Was thinking I might sell the JCM 800 but started getting depressed just thinking about it. I love this amp.

But I am really liking the ace, and love the fact that it has no problem nailing the JCM 800 sound.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2014 11:57 pm 
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Dual Recto
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That's scary close. I like the settings on the JCM 800 better tone wise but that boogie with that crunch AND that clean, that's one hell of an amp!!!!


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:32 pm 
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Mark III
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primal wrote:
I think if I was trying to EQ them the same I probably could have gotten that touch more low end out of the Ace.

However the JCM 800 overall probably does have a touch more low end. Not to be confused with the low end you get with an Electra Dyne (God I miss that amp) or dual rec. But a touch more then the stiletto. But that is not what you buy these amps for anyway, and neither has enough low end to break through in a mix with bass.

The controls on the Ace are definitely more responsive then the JCM 800.

I would definitely say the ace does have a larger range of tones, even on the crunch channel alone. You start throwing in spongy, the different clean modes, tight gain, fluid drive, tube rectified vs diode. It's not close.

However, if we are being fair, the JCM 800 tone is iconic. The JCM 800 invented that tone (I guess really the JMP's did, but you know what I mean).

Build quality. That is hard to say. This is an old Marshall. I have had this thing for a couple years, crank it ALL the time. Not a problem in the world. This thing is a freaking tank.

While the Ace has nice build quality, there is a lot more plumbing that can get clogged. Already had to bring it to a tech for some bad FET's.

Was thinking I might sell the JCM 800 but started getting depressed just thinking about it. I love this amp.

But I am really liking the ace, and love the fact that it has no problem nailing the JCM 800 sound.


I have an original JCM800 100W 2ch combo. It was my first valve amp that I bought over 25yrs ago. I just can't sell it. It needs a complete retube and service and some TLC. I think every guitarist should own at least one JCM 800 at least once in their lives. There's beauty in it's simplicity and as you said, iconic tone.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 7:47 pm 
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Single Recto

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YellowJacket wrote:
That's scary close. I like the settings on the JCM 800 better tone wise but that boogie with that crunch AND that clean, that's one hell of an amp!!!!


It's hard for me to say for certain which I like more. I have gone back and forth. I do think the upper mids of the Stiletto would come through in the mix better.

But the 800 does sound great.


Blaklynx wrote:

I have an original JCM800 100W 2ch combo. It was my first valve amp that I bought over 25yrs ago. I just can't sell it. It needs a complete retube and service and some TLC. I think every guitarist should own at least one JCM 800 at least once in their lives. There's beauty in it's simplicity and as you said, iconic tone.


There is something to be said for pulling out the Les Paul, plugging into a JCM 800, and simply cranking it to drummer level.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:19 pm 
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The mesa sounds better to me,....you did a great job recording,...the room sounds great on that AC track!

well done!

PMcC


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 6:55 am 
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Mark II

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I thought the Stiletto was discontinued due to poor sales? I am shocked such poor sales. I have been looking to buy an authentic Marshall, but the Stiletto catches my eye and ear. :)


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:58 am 
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Mark III

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Brilliant job. Sounds so thick and juicy!

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 12:36 pm 
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The Stiletto sounds awesome! I could never get into Marshall's (though a lot of the best rock was made with them). The presence of the Stiletto says it all.

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