View Poll Results: What small tube-amp head should the Dali consider?

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  • Egnater Tweaker 15

    5 21.74%
  • Bugera T5

    1 4.35%
  • Marshall Origin 20-watt

    5 21.74%
  • Marshall Class 5

    0 0%
  • Blackstar HT5RH

    2 8.70%
  • Fender Bluesbreaker

    3 13.04%
  • Fender SuperChamp 15

    2 8.70%
  • JJetCity Picovalve 5

    2 8.70%
  • VHT special 6

    1 4.35%
  • Something else

    6 26.09%
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Thread: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

  1. #1
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Hi everyone... I've never owned a tube head. I've owned a Traynor tube combo like 10 years ago, but usually I live in the Solid State and/or Digital Modelling style amps (convenience only). I want to get a small tube head as I'm building a few cabinet projects. I've done some research but a little fuzzy on the direction I want to go... would love two channel with footswitch, but it isn't necessary. I won't be running pedals into this at the current time (although I have a Fender Mustang Floor that I could plug in). My preferred sound is always Alex Lifeson, but also digging Black Keys and blues with early 80's metal as well (Vivian Campbell Dio sound). Maiden is a go-to but I can handle that with the solid state amps. This would be in the house for recording and demoing stuff.

    So, here is what I've been looking at (trying to stay under $300 for the head). I'm 100% looking at used, but would go new if price was right:

    Egnater Tweaker 15 - front-runner right now
    Bugera T5 - a little leery about quality
    Marshall Origin 20-watt - a little expensive
    Marshall Class 5
    Blackstar HT5RH
    Fender Bluesbreaker 15
    Fender SuperChamp 15
    JetCity Picovalve 5
    VHT special 6
    Something else?

    Thoughts? Thanks!
    Last edited by The Dali; 03-29-2020 at 09:08 AM.
    -=The Dali
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  2. #2
    Super Toneologist VinceT's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    We have Blackstar HT5 combo and VHT Special 6 head in the store at the moment and Id say, having tried both out, that I prefer the VHT as a low wattage home option. If I had to choose between the two, it would be the VHT.

    That said, Id probably look at something else given my style/needs. Marshall 5 or Vox AC4 would be my top 2 in order of trying out.


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  3. #3
    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Quote Originally Posted by VinceT View Post
    We have Blackstar HT5 combo and VHT Special 6 head in the store at the moment and I’d say, having tried both out, that I prefer the VHT as a low wattage home option. If I had to choose between the two, it would be the VHT.

    That said, I’d probably look at something else given my style/needs. Marshall 5 or Vox AC4 would be my top 2 in order of trying out.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    I would be directly opposite of this

    I borrowed a VHT special 6 from a friend of mine who had swapped the speaker for an Emininence Red white and Blue

    It was a nice amp , sounded freaking great
    but it dint have an EFX loop
    no attenuator
    no headphone speaker out

    the Bugera G5 that I did go with, and that I was directly comparing it to, is a clone of the Blackstar HT5

    the G5 is $199 new at Proaudiostar

    check out this video

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  4. #4
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Thanks for the input. It doesn't look like ProAudioStar has any G5s... But I'll check into these more.
    -=The Dali
    --== Unabashed Alex Lifeson Fan

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  5. #5
    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    oh dang
    just looked them things have almost doubled in price
    EHD
    Just here surfing Guitar Pron
    RG2EX1 w/ SD hot-rodded pickups / RG4EXFM1 w/ Carvin S22j/b + FVN middle
    SR500 / Martin 000CE-1/Epiphone Hummingbird
    Epiphone Florentine with OEM Probuckers
    Ehdwuld branded Blue semi hollow custom with JB/Jazz
    Reptile Green Gibson Custom Studio / Aqua Dean Shire semi hollow with piezo
    Carvin Belair / Laney GC80A Acoustic Amp (a gift from Guitar Player Mag)
    GNX3000 (yea I'm a modeler)

  6. #6
    Sock Market Trader GuitarStv's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    The Origin 20 head is a great sounding amp, and has some cool build in power scaling features which are handy for home playing. Footswitchable boost and effects loop (stick an EQ pedal in the loop and it's effectively a two channel amp). Can definitely do Black Keys/Blues, and I think you could coax some 80s tones as well.
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  7. #7
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Thanks for the responses so far - definitely a lot of options to consider!
    -=The Dali
    --== Unabashed Alex Lifeson Fan

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  8. #8
    High Voltologist Wattage's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Bassbreaker 15

  9. #9
    firstlessonologist guitfiddle's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Of the ones you listed, Origin 20 by a landslide
    - Tom

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  10. #10
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    So far the Egnater is in the lead. I have a line on one with the extension cab so hope to test it out soon.
    -=The Dali
    --== Unabashed Alex Lifeson Fan

    Visit My Guitar Building Blog at www.hammersandchords.com

  11. #11
    Ultimate Tone Slacker
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Marshall DSL1HR I love for thrash metal with a 4x10 or a V30 in a large sealed cab. $250 used or less.
    Monoprice 15 is likely what YOU need. $250 new or much less. I paid $143 for mine new shipped.

    Both are awesome for the price.

  12. #12
    BadHairDayologist Empty Pockets's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    I voted "something else."

    If you want good tone and useful features for the least amount of money, buy an Orange Terror Stamp.

    If you want a high-quality, low-wattage tube amp, get a Matamp Minimat or a Friedman Pink Taco.

    Everything on your list is a compromise.
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  13. #13
    BadHairDayologist Empty Pockets's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    The fact that the leading vote is a Chinese Egnater amp that does nothing well is a perfect example of how out-of-touch and old this forum is.
    green globe burned black by sunn

  14. #14
    Underglazed Hair Metalologist 80's_Metal's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Peavey 6505 mh

  15. #15
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty Pockets View Post
    The fact that the leading vote is a Chinese Egnater amp that does nothing well is a perfect example of how out-of-touch and old this forum is.
    What does place of origin have to do with it? Tons of great gear is made in China and Vietnam and Korea. It appears that your only suggestion is to spend $1200 on a Friedman, which is kinda the definition of "out of touch and old".
    -=The Dali
    --== Unabashed Alex Lifeson Fan

    Visit My Guitar Building Blog at www.hammersandchords.com

  16. #16
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    The Marshall "studio" amps (Studio Vintage 20, Studio Classic 20, and 20 watt Silver Jubilee) seem like they were made exactly for the OP, aside from being well above $300. Might be a better idea to save up and buy one of those when you can.

  17. #17
    Mojo's Minions Diego's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    I love my Tweaker 15 head, I bought it in 2012 and it's been the only head I've owned in these years. Had it with an open back 1x12 first, now with a closed 2x12.

    It doesn't excel at any specific tone, but it does a bit of everything quite convincingly. It's quite literally a tube modeling amp of sorts so it's a good first tube amp,
    but if you're already experienced and you know what you want, you can do better these days. Also, the FX loop sucks with analog pedals and it sounds like a wet dog unless you really gun it.

    Why would you consider an Origin and not a DSL20 head if you want 80s Metal? Not gonna happen with the Origin I think.
    IMO, skip the Class 5, Bugera and VHT. Those were the other choices I had when I bought the Egnater.

    Given those choices, I'd go with the Bluesbreaker if I was you.
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  18. #18
    MeltedClockologist The Dali's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty Pockets View Post
    The fact that the leading vote is a Chinese Egnater amp that does nothing well is a perfect example of how out-of-touch and old this forum is.
    Of course, that doesn't mean he is wrong, either... LOL

    I got my hands on the Tweaker combo this weekend from a friend (after fully sanitizing it, of course) and so far I am underwhelmed.

    To start, I thought it would be WAAAAYYYYY louder. Everything I read on the net talks about how even a 5-watt tube amp can get fairly loud, and this one is 15-watts. It just isn't as loud as I expected. On top of that, you kinda need to crank it up to get a decent sound. Anything under 50% is almost not even audible.

    There is a lot of fiddling needed to get a "good" sound. I knew this going in (it IS called the Tweaker, after all) so I guess I just need to better understand how this works. I am used to dialing in a sound in 2 seconds on a digital amp, so that is probably my lack of experience.

    I only have about two hours into it so far, so things can change. It is well-made and looks so cool and boutique-y.
    -=The Dali
    --== Unabashed Alex Lifeson Fan

    Visit My Guitar Building Blog at www.hammersandchords.com

  19. #19
    Mojo's Minions Diego's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Quote Originally Posted by The Dali View Post
    Of course, that doesn't mean he is wrong, either... LOL

    I got my hands on the Tweaker combo this weekend from a friend (after fully sanitizing it, of course) and so far I am underwhelmed.

    To start, I thought it would be WAAAAYYYYY louder. Everything I read on the net talks about how even a 5-watt tube amp can get fairly loud, and this one is 15-watts. It just isn't as loud as I expected. On top of that, you kinda need to crank it up to get a decent sound. Anything under 50% is almost not even audible.

    There is a lot of fiddling needed to get a "good" sound. I knew this going in (it IS called the Tweaker, after all) so I guess I just need to better understand how this works. I am used to dialing in a sound in 2 seconds on a digital amp, so that is probably my lack of experience.

    I only have about two hours into it so far, so things can change. It is well-made and looks so cool and boutique-y.
    Mine took me months to get a good sound from. And since it's your first tube amp, well... it's a learning curve.
    Have some patience. The Tweaker has a very gentle MV, until 12 o clock it's very quiet and past 12 it's loud as hell.
    Epiphone LP Standard PlusTop Pro
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    Ibanez RG270 / Screamin' Demon bridge.

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    Line 6 M13 and plenty of stompboxes I rarely use!

  20. #20
    High Voltologist Wattage's Avatar
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    Default Re: VOTE!!! Small 5 - 20w Tube Head for the Dali

    Tweakers run ridiculous plate voltage. If you get one find a set of old RCA grey plates

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