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Sir Groove-A-Lot
Charvel So Cal & San Dimas
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So this is a bit of a weird one and takes some explaining. For those who don't care about the technical aspect of all this just scroll down to the pictures :lol:

There's also a short video with a snippet from a song I recorded using it so you can hear how sick it sounds now :metal:


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As per my last NGearD thread (June?) where I showed off my Rectifier and my new Charvel, I brushed over this amp as it was part of my lockdown "buy to try" merry-go-round of gear, where I went off the deep end trying to get my EP finished :lol:

I bought it off the back of borrowing my bandmate's 410H. The 210H is just the clean/crunch and OD2 channels from the 410. But it's still the same in all other respects (100w)

I loved OD2 on his 410H and this came up for sale locally. I figured "i don't need all those other channels!" and bought it immediately.

I kinda regretted it at first. The more I played with it, the more I felt like it just didn't have the same level of mojo as my other amps - 5150 and Dual Rec especially. I just figured "maybe I'm not a Marshall guy after all" and it sat in the corner while I put it up for sale.

About 3 months passed and I was like eh, I'll fire it up again... Holy shit this is actually really cool... But it just feels a little too controlled/smooth, almost like an emulated sound? Not raw enough.

I started fucking around with it, slaving it into my Rectifier and thinking "man, that's just it! It's the super responsive and touch sensitiveness of the Marshall but the rawness and aggression of the recto! If I only I could combine the two..."

I was speaking to Toe-Knee about all this and he convinced me to start modifying it. Basically said that these amps are great, really well designed, they just suffer from a few things that hold them back, and if I like the Rectifier thump and grind, why not just take away the negative feedback loop in the JVM, since Rectifiers don't have any?

That was the first thing I did and holy shit what a difference. Like HUGE difference. I instantly decided I was going to keep the amp and took down all the for sale ads :lol: It now sounded/felt/responded like it did when I slaved it into the Rectifier. HUGE feel now. So much slamming grind on palm mutes, really big open raw tone, but still with the Marshall touch-sensitivity and ease-of-play.

Next thing he suggested was to add a choke. This is difficult to explain the effect of, but I'd describe it like watching a tv show but the image is slightly blurry, then you add a choke and all of a sudden it snaps into super HD. Because the choke cleans the circuit of any leftover AC ripple, it reduces hums and hiss as well as taking away the "sag", so you get a tighter, more immediate response, and a much purer/cleaner/less mushy tone. It's richer, and more refined sounding. Feels great to play through.

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Anyway, that's enough of that shit, here are some pics....

This is what it's like stock:



and I...

  • Replaced the grill cloth with Marshall tolex
  • Replaced the white piping with gold
  • Replaced the plastic input jack with a Cliff metal one, JTM style
  • Replaced the "script" logo with a 70's Plexi style one
  • Replaced the handle with a new one with gold clasps
  • removed the negative feedback loop
  • Installed a 10H choke

And now it looks like this...





Here's the choke for those who care...




Here's a short snippet of how it sounds in a mix situation. This is with very little post EQ, just a gentle HP/LP

https://www.dropbox.com/s/9sdpb4hsp6rnb5q/JVM.mp4?dl=0

Here it is on instagram just in case that one takes too long to load/doesn't work...

http://instagr.am/p/CEcFU-tphTS%2F/
I keep going back and forth between this and my Dual Rec, and at the moment I just can't stop playing it. It's gone from nearly being sold to being my favourite amp :metal:
 

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That a PCB amp? If so, did you just have to cut a trace to get rid of the NFB? Or was it pulled off of the impedance switch and just had to unsolder a wire?
 

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NFB Loop... My first real amp, the Mesa Nomad 45, had a switch in the back called Extreme :lol:, which basically cut the NFBL. I don't understand why you'd want to have it in, since it really squishes everything down. When I got my Nomad 100 head I had my amp tech do this mod, since it doesn't have the switch. Funnily enough, as he also changed it from Parallel to Serial FX Loop, he wired the NFBL to the then-defunct pot for the FX Blend control, and now it has a variable NFBL dump, basically.

I think I have it set to about 80% open, so it's nearly all the way, but back a little to have a bit of that compression that comes from the NFBL.



Interesting that the JVM has the NFBL. I remember playing one and kinda digging it, but yeah, certainly not enough to buy one.
 

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Sir Groove-A-Lot
Charvel So Cal & San Dimas
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6,916 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That a PCB amp? If so, did you just have to cut a trace to get rid of the NFB? Or was it pulled off of the impedance switch and just had to unsolder a wire?
No, they've made it super easy on the JVM. They've put it on a 2-pin spade that you can literally just disconnect from the board.



I took it off the board and just heat-shrinked the ends.

NFB Loop... My first real amp, the Mesa Nomad 45, had a switch in the back called Extreme :lol:, which basically cut the NFBL. I don't understand why you'd want to have it in, since it really squishes everything down. When I got my Nomad 100 head I had my amp tech do this mod, since it doesn't have the switch. Funnily enough, as he also changed it from Parallel to Serial FX Loop, he wired the NFBL to the then-defunct pot for the FX Blend control, and now it has a variable NFBL dump, basically.

I think I have it set to about 80% open, so it's nearly all the way, but back a little to have a bit of that compression that comes from the NFBL.

Interesting that the JVM has the NFBL. I remember playing one and kinda digging it, but yeah, certainly not enough to buy one.
Most amps will, particularly modern amps. It's sort of the basic law of amplification - to have an -ve fb loop, as it keeps things clean and under control. But for us guitarists, it often makes things a little too smooth, compressed, and undynamic.

You can change a resistor value and it will take the NFB up/down, or you can add a pot like your tech did and have it variable. This is the most common way among JVM fanbois, but I found that I just flat out prefer it and think it's at its absolute best with the loop removed entirely, so I didn't fuck with the whole pot thing. :shrug:
 

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Yeah, just cutting it is way easier, and gets you to the toanz :yesway:
 

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Arrr, Matey!
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One of the guys in my band has a 50 watt JVM modded with 6550s and some other stuff done. It sounds ridiculous. I definitely wouldn't mind grabbing one at some point just to have, since I finally figured out I'm a modded Marshall guy after all these years.

Fantastic work on that headshell... that looks amazing.
 

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Yeah that sounds awesome.....I'm a JVM guy myself, have the full monty 4 channel 410HD ..... still trying to figure out what I love most about that thing.....I'm probably not as dialed in sound wise as most of you guys here, but I have a lot to work with, with 4 channels (Clean-Crunch-OD1-OD2) & 3 modes of varying gain effectively making it like 12 channels or something crazy.....I have 4 main tones dialed in I like, that's enough for me.I think my issue (if there's even an issue) is maybe moreso getting my guitar/PUP combos right, then dialed into the amp....'cuz I know the amp has lots to offer. I'm curious about the mods; a bit scared to wade into that myself but lets see....but the physical facelift stuff is just incredible! Really looks nice.Looks like a proper boutique hot rodded amp now, with an iconic badge on it.
 

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Like I already said to you, you know what I think it sounds like. I'm currently stuck on a profile of a CAE modded 800 with KT77's and had exactly the same experience of suddenly finding the ease of playing Marshall.
 

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Sir Groove-A-Lot
Charvel So Cal & San Dimas
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Yeah, I'll be honest, I was really snobby about getting a Marshall. I've never owned one besides a Valvestate 8100, and they always just smacked of "I didn't do my research but the guy at the music store said Slash uses this one". Dad amps, basically.

But that's just arrogant and naive on my part, to ignore their place in metal history, especially when you realise that nearly every high gain amp (and I truly mean every high gain amp, no matter how high up the boutique ladder you go) is just a modified JCM800 :lol:

Well that sounds great, what pup you got in the Charvel?
Suhr Aldrich in the bridge, Duncan 59 in the neck
 
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