Can't decide which amp I should get (Laney IRT60, EVH5153, H&K Grandmeister, Kemper)

Discussion in 'Beginners/FAQ' started by MajorKirrahe, Dec 13, 2016.

listed amp poll

  1. Laney IRT 60 Ironheart

    2 vote(s)
    6.7%
  2. EVH 5150 III 50w

    8 vote(s)
    26.7%
  3. Hughes and Kettner Grandmeister 36 or 40

    2 vote(s)
    6.7%
  4. Kemper Power Head

    18 vote(s)
    60.0%
  5. other

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. MajorKirrahe

    MajorKirrahe SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Location:
    Germany, Bavaria
    Hello,

    I've been looking for a new amp for a while now but I simply can't decide which one to get.
    It's main use will be for a death metal/deathcore/prog band I recently joined but I also want to use it at home so it should sound decent at low volumes aswell.
    I'm looking for a modern, dry metal or clean tone like Intervals, for example, has but I also want to be able to get a more evil sound out of the amp like Meshuggah or Vildhjarta does (Thall).
    I have a Bogner 4x12 and an ENGL E212 Pro cab, both with V30 speakers and my main guitar at the moment is a Schecter KM7 in Drop Ab. My budget is around 800 EUR and I'm looking to buy used. I might be willing to up my budget but I think I'd only really do that for a Kemper.
    I also want to say that I'm not interested in full size 100w+ heads, they are overkill for my needs and not really comfortable to transport, that's also the reason why I'm selling my recently bought one already.

    So far I've been considering:

    Laney Ironheart 60 (about 425 EUR used):
    Cheapest of the bunch and seems to fit my needs perfectly, from Olas videos I also really like the sound. However, it doesn't have a MIDI in and I heard the built quality could be better.

    EVH 5150 III 50w (about 750-800 EUR used):
    Seems like a good pick for any kind of metal, really, but the volume jump between channel 1 and 2 could be a problem for Prog stuff and unlike the other two it doesn't have a built in powersoak.

    Hughes and Kettner Grandmeister 36 (or 40) (about 700 EUR used):
    Appears to be the most versitile of all the tube amps I listed with the least weight, the most features and built in effects. Just not sure how the tone compares to the other two for death metal stuff and I can't seem to find decent metal tests with it. I've only heard that the other two amps are better for metal.

    Kemper Power Head (anywhere between 1500 and 2000 EUR used):
    About twice as or more expensive than the others but with that one I'd have everything I want and more. Main reasons against this one is that I've heard it's not really worth it for using with passive guitar cabs as the cabs will colour every profile somewhat similiar and I really don't want to sell mine as I've pretty much just bought both of them. I'd also rather spend more time getting comfortable with my playing instead of fiddling with patches/profiles.I think I'll definitely get one in a few years though, just not sure if I should bother with one already as I haven't been playing for that long yet and 1500 - 1600 EUR is the absolute maximum I'd be willing to spend on one right now.


    Any thoughts or recommendations? :D
    (Edit:
    Also forgot to say that I'm unable to test any of these amps myself, except maybe the profilier, as the closest musicstore to me doesn't sell any of these brands.)

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    3,351
    Likes Received:
    469
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    i voted kemper because then you get profiles of all the other amps plus more

    i had the 120 watt ironheart. The kemper profiles sound exact. I sold the ironheart

    edit: you honestly dont waste time fiddling with the kemper/ sounds too good too quickly to need to worry loads about tweaks

    plus if you like a lead sound from one amp and the rythm sound from a different amp, then kemper wins.
     
  3. Stijnson

    Stijnson SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    604
    Likes Received:
    44
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2013
    Location:
    Sweden
    Having owned a IRT studio, and bow a kemper, my vote went to the kemper. Im sure the the 5153 will serve you well too though. But the kempers versatility, quality, fx, and the fact that they now have merged profiles that are better to use with a cab, are a no brainer if you ask me.
     
  4. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire tinkerer/aspiring builder/8 string hoarder

    Messages:
    3,888
    Likes Received:
    1,111
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2015
    Location:
    minnesotahhh ehh
    Kemper is always a great choice.
     
  5. Casper777

    Casper777 Slow Player

    Messages:
    894
    Likes Received:
    248
    Joined:
    May 16, 2013
    Location:
    Geneva, Switzerland
    Kemper is the best gear purchase I made the past few years...

    Previsously was playing ENGL SE 670, Viktor Smolsky, H&K Grandmeister 36... haven't played any of those recently ;)

    I used my powerhead either throuh active monitors (Behringer), Yamaha DXR10 or guitar cabs (or any combination of them) super happy.

    Only situation where it is a bit lacking is in the rehearsal room when a second guitarist is playeing a real Mesa Mark V head hahahaha
     
  6. MajorKirrahe

    MajorKirrahe SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Location:
    Germany, Bavaria
    Thanks for all the replies and votes so far.
    Didn't expect people to be so much in favor of the Kemper but if it weren't for the price I also think it would be the best choice by far.

    Hm, while nobody voted for the Laney, I think it also woudn't be a bad idea to buy a used one now as it's only around 400 EUR and get a Kemper Power Head as soon as I get a really good deal, no rush.
     
  7. EmaDaCuz

    EmaDaCuz Brutal yet soulful

    Messages:
    469
    Likes Received:
    9
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2014
    Location:
    Chester, UK
    IRT is good, but it is love or hate. Zero versatility, IMHO. If you like it, you will play it 24/7. If you don't, you won't even switch it on. One trick pony.

    Grandmeister is beast, but I wouldn't play death metal on it. You can, of course, but it is not that great.

    What about some Engl amps?
     
  8. MajorKirrahe

    MajorKirrahe SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Location:
    Germany, Bavaria

    For the price the gamble seems to be worth it though, I might actually know someone who sells one.

    I really like the sound of ENGL amps, especially the Savage, but the cheaper ones don't seem that appealing and a Savage is to expensive and big.
    There are some used Savage 60s available though I've heard that they are a bit different than their big brother and not as good for metal.
     
  9. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    3,351
    Likes Received:
    469
    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Location:
    Norfolk, UK
    The lack of Midi is crap and the footswich channel switch is a joke. Its designed in a totally backwards logic kind of way.

    The clean is great and the built in Reverb is great. It can sound brilliant through the right cab but also horrible through the wrong cab.

    I had a fuse blow for no reason in mine and also the heat resisting paint stuff on the back was all bubbled where moisture must have gotten in when they did it at the factory. It was easy as pie to change tubes and looked great on stage.

    It is heavy though, especially if you have it in a live in case like I did.

    The light, small Kemper with profiles that sound identical to it, without any of the build issues or anything else, doesnt make me miss the Laney at all.
     
  10. Dodeejeroo

    Dodeejeroo SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    137
    Likes Received:
    7
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2016
    Location:
    Solano County, Nor Cal
    I have a 5153 50watt, and I love it, but if you have the budget for the Kemper it's really hard to argue against that kind of versatility.
     
  11. eightsixboy

    eightsixboy あなたのお母さんを犯さ

    Messages:
    280
    Likes Received:
    90
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Location:
    Australia
    Whatever you do avoid the Grandmeister like the plague. I had one and it was the fizziest most un-tube like gain tone ever, the crunch channel was ok but the higher gain channels were awful. Had to run the treble and presence all the way off to try and cut the fizz, I tried different tubes, cabs and everything, ended up selling the thing.


    The IRT stuff is ok for the price, but not really a metal amp, would be ok with a boost in front of it though.


    I vote for Kemper just due to the plethora of options.


    Another alternative is to use any decent tube amp/head and run pedals through it. There are plenty of decent higher gain pedals around. I was always an "amp gain" guy until I ran out of amps to try/buy haha.
     
  12. op1e

    op1e Blood_Lust:Unlimited

    Messages:
    2,296
    Likes Received:
    115
    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2008
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Get an EVH 50w and have it modded if you have Kemper money and don't wanna spend Kemper money. Dual concentric pots on the volume/gain for channel 1 and 2. They're loud af and sound good at any volume.
     
  13. CykkVii

    CykkVii SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    2
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2014
    Location:
    Haarlem, Noord-Holland
    Oh trust me it is a metal amp, it all depends on the cab you're using.
    I'm using it with a Zilla fatboy 2x12" with a creamback and V30: from rock with alot of purr to the high gain stuff, cleans would suffice for post rock along with the reverb on the thing. But fender cleans you wouldn't get.
     
  14. crankyrayhanky

    crankyrayhanky SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    773
    Likes Received:
    56
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2009
    Location:
    Mesa, AZ
    This
    Buy used if you can
    The mod shouldn't be too costly
     
  15. youngthrasher9

    youngthrasher9 SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    628
    Likes Received:
    52
    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2011
    Location:
    Loma Rica, CA
    Wasn't very fond of the Grandmeister myself. Can't put my finger on why. I'd definitely go kemper or 5153.
     
  16. MajorKirrahe

    MajorKirrahe SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2015
    Location:
    Germany, Bavaria
    Thanks again for all the replies and votes!

    Funds for the Kemper are no problem at the moment and I just found someone who wants to buy my Dual Rectifier Reborn so I could just buy a Kemper with that money as soon as I find a decent deal (there was one actually just two days ago for 1.515 EUR with shipping, it was gone before I could even think about buying it...). Before I spend about 800 EUR for a used EVH and another 100 - 200 EUR for the Mod I think I'd rather just wait for another good deal on a Kemper.

    Not sure if I still want to buy something for the meantime and as a backup. Someone would be willing to sell me a 5 month old Laney IRT60 for about 400 EUR. As a beater amp, a Bugera Infinium 6262 would probably suffice too, they can be had for about 250 EUR already.

    By the replies here the Grandmeister is out of the question for now, unless I get to test it out in person somehow but I doubt it.
     

Share This Page