There are often threads about small tube amp recommendations, everybody has their opinion and recommendations, I thought I’d share some recent sounds I’m getting and really liking.
I have a Ibanez TSA 15 combo, it’s a basic low end, small 15W 1×12 tube amp, It has 2 6v6 power tubes and 2 12ax7 pre amp tubes and no built in reverb. I can turn it up to 10 and it stays clean, it’s 33lbs. I did some upgrades, I put in a Eminence Cannabis Rex speaker and replaced the generic Chinese 12AX7 tubes with a Tung-Sol and JJ ECC83S.
Here are some sounds from a wedding gig i had recently. The “trick” i used this time was to turn the amp up to about 8 or 9 and roll down the volume on the guitar. (usually I would max the guitar then adjust the amp, now I prefer this new way)
For reverb, I am using a Alesis nanoverb, although we were playing in a concrete courtyard and you can hear the natural reverb on everyone so I may have been ok with no reverb.
The guitar is a basic mid level L5 copy, a Cort LCS1 with a Gibson Classic 57 in the Front and a GFS Mean 90 in the bridge position, I was probably using both in the middle position with the bridge volume and tone rolled off and the front tone rolled off a little.
I think a lot of the sound I like is the way and location in which it was recorded, again we were set up in a concrete hallway, which provided a lot of good natural reverb – the small zoom h2 recorder was set to record ‘rear’, so it’s picking up a lot of ambience, not just pointing at the band.