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Marshall DSL 401 first thoughts

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  • Marshall DSL 401 first thoughts

    Sup guys, just got a 401 yesterday in the mail (even though it arrived friday! bah!) and right now im taking some time to get familiar with it and experiment a little. Yesterday i played it for 10 mins to make sure it worked, which was a good sign.

    OK, stock it doesnt sound that great. The clean isnt bad at all, pretty full and chimey at low volume. Doesnt have a lot of tone and life, but is definately a usable clean channel. The OD channel is mainly a driven blues tone, pretty crunchy and loose. Not quite my type of tone but not bad either. The OD2 has a good boost of gain, almost enough for metal, but perfect for rock. Both channels were incredibly buzzy, and i couldnt turn it up because of the time and that i had plenty of homework to finish up.

    So today I thought i would use the celestion T75 and the eminence V12 in my Laney combo. I also got my Spina SD-1 out and i hooked up my minimass attenuator.

    External cab, etc.-
    When i first hit the standby I did notice the cleans were a bit more rounded, and smoother. Not a huge difference but very noticable. The OD channels had a HUGE tonal improvement. I am now a firm believer that a speaker change can work wonders. I know the stock speaker is a POS, but its no comparison to quality speakers like the T75 and the V12. There still was a hint of buzziness, but it sounds like a Marshall now. After a few moments i dimed the level on my SD1, and gave it a go. Instantly I get the tight, super crunchy semi-compressed Marshall high gain tone I was looking for. This is why I bought this amp! Even with the el84 tubes, this thing still smokes. Not bright or piercing, pretty warm but still has a great tone. The amp doesnt have huge versatility, but it gets the job done. I was using the attenuator the whole time, setting it half way. Volumes were still fairly low, I suppose a loud bedroom level.

    Sometime this week when the band gets together to jam again I will really crank it and see what it can destroy haha!
    Guitars: Jackson Black Flametop SLSMG FullShred(A8)/FullShred w/Tonepros bridge
    Fernandes Revolver Pro 7-String, BKP Painkiller(A8)
    Amp: Laney VH100R and Splawn 2x12 cab
    Effects: John Spina modded SD-1, Morley Bad Horsie Wah, MXR 10-band EQ (OLD version)
    Recording/Practice: Line 6 Guitar Port

  • #2
    Re: Marshall DSL 401 first thoughts

    Yeah i've got one of these. Nice enough, but the EL84s just don't have enough push for me. I need a full EL34 old school marshall style sound I think.
    "I believe the truth is not told between 9 and 5." - Hunter S. Thompson


    • #3
      Re: Marshall DSL 401 first thoughts

      It is my first tube amp I should say for the DSL401

      However I'm just unhappy about the clean distorts too fast
      Other than that, its a good amp.
      I would gladly replace the EL84s to JJ and 12AX7s to GTs once its time to change. I gigged once and I maxed the volume, the sound is not bad actually
      Gibson Songwriter Deluxe
      Gibson 1959 reissue
      Gibson 1960 reissue
      Gibson EDS-1275

      Freedom through the blood of Christ


      • #4
        Re: Marshall DSL 401 first thoughts

        Have fun with it! Its not a bad little amp with a little patience youll find what your lookin 4.