10 Nov 2009
We've updated the Music section with clips and lyrics for songs from our second album, Ghosts That Linger.
I spent a good deal of yesterday and most of today on a project I'd been putting off for a while. My favorite solid state amp is the Gallien Krueger 200MB. The MB stands for Micro Bass, and the first generation ones (you can tell them from the newer models by their black control panel) was an amp I first discovered in college as my upright bass teacher had one. It's a very mellow sounding amp, with an extremely musical compressor / sustainer and fixed EQ section.
The newer models sound more brittle unless you turn every knob from the parametric EQ section fully counter-clockwise, and while I owned one for a brief period, I sold it the moment I was able to find an older model. The one I have here is my 2nd 200MB -- the first one is permanently kept in Saint Barths, which the band used for several shows we did there back in the day.
My only complaint about these amps is that the stock Pyle speaker they came with sounds a bit dull, and is voiced for bass. I replaced the speaker in my other 200MB with an old JBL K120 from the 60s, and was very happy with the results. I've had a JBL D123 from the same era which I've been intending to put in the GK, and I did just that. Even though D123's were really meant to be hi-fidelity speakers (not at all voiced for guitar like the D-120s or K120s,) I really love how they handle highs. (Sorry, blurry photo.)
These GK's are a real pain to disassemble, requiring almost 40 screws that need to be removed and replaced in a specific order. (Think of working on a late 80's compact Japanese car, where to get to the alternator, you have to take off the front right wheel and, like, the manifold.)
But they are small, light (even lighter with the JBL), and sound great -- almost ideal for baritone guitar. Here's the GK back together (with my copy of ODST for size reference), and my wounded Pro Reverb in the background.