So our other guitarist Adam is looking for a new amp. He's been playing on my old chameleon, mesa 50/50 rig for a while, and he's looking to either go with a new rack setup or with an amp head.
First off, we love the sound I'm getting right now out of the Triaxis / 2:90 rig, but we're looking for something complimentary to that sound, but maybe a bit heavier.
First stop we tried out a few mesa heads. We started with a dual rec 3 channel. I've played a few of these before, but I really wanted to push it this time, so the store we were in let us use a back room and an overdrive pedal. I tell you, with the mids up high and the overdrive pedal activated, the orange channel on modern mode is just insanely awesome when cranked. It's too bad that the red channel is a little too flubby and the clean channel is too sterile, otherwise this would be the amp. It slays. Also, I'm not too fond of the dual rec at low volumes, even with the od in front. it really needs to be cranked and then it just comes to life, but most of you already knew that.
Next we tried out a Mesa Stiletto. It sounds awesome for that 80s style Marshall sound, but that's not really us so that was pretty much it for that.
They had a Mark V at the same store, but we skipped that for today, my experiences with the Mark V make me just want to go back to my Triaxis. That's just my opinion though.
So we headed out to a second store. Adam teaches at this place and he knew they had a 5150 III in the back. The first thing we did was fire up the clean channel. We were not too impressed with the Mesa heads' clean channels, and the fender just sounded awesome. It was very close to my Triaxis clean sound, in some ways maybe even better. However, the gain channels left a lot to be desired. Definitely not a tweaker's amp with only Low, Mid, and High knobs, as a longtime Mesa player, it was an instant turnoff. The amp is perfectly suited for a hard rock band, but we're metal and even with an OD in front, it just wouldn't be enough.
So we head to a third store that has a Mesa Roadster in stock. Bingo! We found a winner. a 4 channel dual rec with a fantastic clean channel. We switched channel 1 to "tweed" and it just sounded awesome. We put it on orange modern, and it just slayed for heavy metal riffing, maybe even a little better than the dual rec 3 channel. With just the short time we spent with this head, it's easily the best amp I've ever played and left us both with a very incurable case of GAS
I still love the Triaxis / 2:90 as the ultimate live and racked rig, but I would love to have a Roadster as a second amp, and I think within the next month or two before we start our tour in March, Adam is probably going to buy one of these.
So that was my Saturday. Nothing like a few hours of savage metal riffing on tons of new amps
Nice writeup. When I got my 3 channel triple, I sort of missed my triax/2:90 rig. Now that I have the Roadking, I don't really miss it at all.
Dave and I A/B'd his Roadster and my Roadking, they were similar enough that the differences could be chalked up to tubes. Any of the slight differences could be made to sould identical on the two amps, by using slightly different settings.
The Roadster/Roadking are the cream of the Recto crop, IMO.