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Thread: Some HXDA questions

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    Some HXDA questions

    Looking for a great Marshall tone for original rock and roll songs. Been looking at the HXDA and am very close to getting one. Wondering how close it is tone wise to the Marshall Class 5 which I have been really digging lately. (Wonderful sag and very addictive). Does anyone have any experience with both of these? The Class 5 is considered a "mini-plexi" so just curious how close to the HXDA it is in terms of gain, responsiveness and the like. Will I need to dime the HXDA to get the same kind of juicy sag? Also wondering about cabinet/speaker choice. Has anyone played this head through greenbacks.
    Last edited by Burtrola; 06-21-2013 at 01:10 PM. Reason: <Accidentally deleted original post >

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    Les Schefman to the white courtesy phone...
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    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    I'll say that I have the HXDA and the 2x12 with the v30's and I love it. However, I've never played the 5watt Marshall. I sure would like to though... sounds like a lot of fun!

    IMO, the HXDA takes pedals really well. I find the clean tones unreal. Actually I find all the tones unreal. You do have some dialing to do though as the amp is sensitive and there are many configurations.

    That said, I'm not as experienced as some of the cats here and I just got this rig so YMMV.
    Last edited by Kine; 06-20-2013 at 11:55 AM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! View Post
    Les Schefman to the white courtesy phone...
    Haha!

    Listen to the Allman Brothers' Live at the Fillmore, and to the clips on the PRS site. The HXDA is those tones, for real.

    It's tremendously responsive to the guitar volume, sounds fantastic clean, and grits up very nicely. It's more late 60s Marshall sound than modern Marshall sound. Hope this helps!

    I run mine with a Mesa 212 with V-30s, because that's something I already had. But it'd probably be great with vintage sounding Greenback style speakers. One of my friends has an old Marshall 412 with Greenbacks from the 70s, and I plan to try it with that, but haven't yet had the opportunity to work at his studio, so I can't really say for sure. It's honestly the nicest sounding cab I've ever played through with my old Two-Rock Onyxes, that were pretty Marshally sounding.

    It's great with pedals, BTW.

    Best amp (for me) ever, and that includes a lot of really high end, solidly great amps.
    Last edited by LSchefman; 06-20-2013 at 12:03 PM.
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
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    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LSchefman View Post
    Listen to the Allman Brothers' Live at the Fillmore, and to the clips on the PRS site. The HXDA is those tones, for real.
    I'll also add that if you're interested in how the Gain can be pushed to check out Tim Pierce's Youtube video where he demos his 2 HXDA's. Of course David Grissom gives a good rundown at the 2013 NAMM show on Youtube as well.

  6. #6
    One last-minute thought...

    I think of modern Marshall sounds as kind of like dry toast.

    The HXDA is pancakes ladled with sweet butter and syrup, just a beautiful sounding thing. If that's what you're into, it's a good choice.
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
    -- Homer J. Simpson

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    Thanks for answering. I did plug into a Mesa cab today with V30s and did not miss the greenbacks. Thinking I can use the HXDA for most of my gain needs and use pedals where I need more syrup. Can't really demo before purchase so makes it a little tough. Your comments certainly help.

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    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    The beauty is the flexibility of the HX and DA settings in my opinion. I've found that I really like the 3 toggles set to HX mode... of course I'm a huge Hendrix fan! You can really get those rich tones that he used. However, like you mentioned, adding pedals for your various needs is just icing on the cake... or I should say more syrup on the pancakes!

    One thing to keep in mind, and Les has mentioned this in the various HXDA posts that he's so thoughtfully shared here, is that you'll most likely roll your volume and tone back on your guitars using this amp. Especially for those clean tones. If you're not used to doing this, it may take a little bit to find your specific sound. I mention it because I never used to do this much with my previous amps. Maybe I'd back off the volume and tone a little to say 7, 8 or 9 but using my DGT w the HXDA I find I'm playing with a guitar volume and tone sometimes set at 3! That would be the lower end of the spectrum of course. It really is a beautiful thing, though, as the amount of tones you can get out of this thing with just the guitar and amp is nuts.

    Adding pedals has resulted in sonic bliss for me. I've really been enjoying the El Capistan through this amp. I find I don't need a compressor. Les turned me on to the Plimsoul but unfortunately it seems to need servicing otherwise it has been formidable gain pedal. I've recently acquired the Blackstar HT pedal and I found it has added a nice extra tube circuit with awesome tube distortion that goes into high gain territory while adding another channel for clean/crunch/boost. I look forward to trying my Red Witch Fuzz God II that's on order and should be here in the next couple days...
    Last edited by Kine; 06-21-2013 at 07:58 AM.

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    Thanks Kine. Been playing some lower wattage amps lately and definitely enjoy the guitar rollback technique. Funny to call it that as back in the day, before channel switchers, it probably was "just the way its done". Sounds like this works well with the HXDA which is what I want and so far I hear that the master volume works really well on these amps, making it more usable in that regard. I'm really more of an "amp guy" then a "pedal guy", but I do like to add some dist for leads and I have an Algal Bloom Fuzz that has a lot of rich overtones and, believe it or not, is simply great with chords. So appreciate the pedal comments regarding the HXDA. I am also very familiar with the Plimsoul and that is a great pedal. Especially for leads. Might also recommend the new Sovereign from Wampler. That is a great pedal also which I got (along with the Rat) just to try to bring some extra crunch to my AC30 (still my main amp for now). Wampler calls the Sovereign a distortion pedal, but it really is extremely amp like and more of a killer OD IMO.

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    Senior Member jfb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kine View Post
    The beauty is the flexibility of the HX and DA settings in my opinion. I've found that I really like the 3 toggles set to HX mode... of course I'm a huge Hendrix fan! You can really get those rich tones that he used. However, like you mentioned, adding pedals for your various needs is just icing on the cake... or I should say more syrup on the pancakes!

    One thing to keep in mind, and Les has mentioned this in the various HXDA posts that he's so thoughtfully shared here, is that you'll most likely roll your volume and tone back on your guitars using this amp. Especially for those clean tones. If you're not used to doing this, it may take a little bit to find your specific sound. I mention it because I never used to do this much with my previous amps. Maybe I'd back off the volume and tone a little to say 7, 8 or 9 but using my DGT w the HXDA I find I'm playing with a guitar volume and tone sometimes set at 3! That would be the lower end of the spectrum of course. It really is a beautiful thing, though, as the amount of tones you can get out of this thing with just the guitar and amp is nuts.

    Adding pedals has resulted in sonic bliss for me. I've really been enjoying the El Capistan through this amp. I find I don't need a compressor. Les turned me on to the Plimsoul but unfortunately it seems to need servicing otherwise it has been formidable gain pedal. I've recently acquired the Blackstar HT pedal and I found it has added a nice extra tube circuit with awesome tube distortion that goes into high gain territory while adding another channel for clean/crunch/boost. I look forward to trying my Red Witch Fuzz God II that's on order and should be here in the next couple days...
    Sounds like you've been really enjoying this amp. Great to hear. Really dig the write up and thoughts. It seems the HX/DA is THE PRS amp.
    Plank Owner

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    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burtrola View Post
    I'm really more of an "amp guy" then a "pedal guy", but I do like to add some dist for leads
    I think if you're an amp guy, that you'll love the HXDA. The master volume works great and even at lower volumes. I find you definitely don't need to dime it to get sweet tones. That said, the HXDA likes some volume (hence the rollback on the guitar) to get going a bit (just like any tube amp).

    I typically dial it in where I get a nice clean tone and if I turn the volume up a bit I get some nice hair. You can push the guitar volume towards max to get a nicel crunch but generally I use a distortion pedal for gainier stuff. However, when I get to recording some of the crunchy stuff, I'll definitely search for tones in the amp first. I just usually don't play with distortion when I sit down. I'm not a metal player (anymore).

    I really think that Dave Grissom does a good demo of the amp in the NAMM 2013 vid. Granted he hadn't dialed it in before he played it, but you get the idea of what's available. The fact that he hadn't dialed it in says something I think. The thing just sounds great!

    Quote Originally Posted by jfb View Post
    Sounds like you've been really enjoying this amp. Great to hear. Really dig the write up and thoughts. It seems the HX/DA is THE PRS amp.
    It's hands down the best amp I've ever owned and I'm absolutely in love with it's tone and just the whole vibe of the thing (not that I've owned a bunch of high end amps though). It's fkn awesome!
    Last edited by Kine; 06-21-2013 at 01:27 PM. Reason: sorry edited this post a lot. pm me if you have any questions

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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Kine View Post
    I think if you're an amp guy, that you'll love the HXDA. The master volume works great and even at lower volumes. I find you definitely don't need to dime it to get sweet tones. That said, the HXDA likes some volume (hence the rollback on the guitar) to get going a bit (just like any tube amp).

    I typically dial it in where I get a nice clean tone and if I turn the volume up a bit I get some nice hair. You can push the guitar volume towards max to get full crunch but generally I use a distortion pedal for that stuff. However, when I get to recording some of the crunchy stuff, I'll definitely search for tones in the amp first. I just usually don't play with distortion when I sit down. I'm not a metal player (anymore).

    I really think that Dave Grissom does a good demo of the amp in the NAMM 2013 vid. Granted he hadn't dialed it in before he played it, but you get the idea of what's available. The fact that he hadn't dialed it in says something I think. The thing just sounds great!


    It's hands down the best amp I've ever owned and I'm absolutely in love with it's tone and just the whole vibe of the thing (not that I've owned a bunch of high end amps though). It's fkn awesome!
    Very cool and I hope I dig it as much as you guys. Because I just ordered one with the effects loop add on, and the deep stealth 2 X12 cab. Special order so can't return it. BTW, I got the paisley cover. Grill cloth won't match the cabinet. Hopefully it will still look good on top of the black 2x12.

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    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burtrola View Post
    Very cool and I hope I dig it as much as you guys. Because I just ordered one with the effects loop add on, and the deep stealth 2 X12 cab. Special order so can't return it. BTW, I got the paisley cover. Grill cloth won't match the cabinet. Hopefully it will still look good on top of the black 2x12.
    Whoohooo!!! Well, I certainly hope you like it since you can't return it... That takes a set. I suppose you can always sell if if you're not completely in love with it. I'm pretty confident that you'll love it. You'll have to give us a tone report when you get it! Congrats and best wishes on the delivery!

    Oh and I think the paisley cover will look great on top of all black! What color face plate?
    Last edited by Kine; 06-21-2013 at 01:31 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kine View Post
    Whoohooo!!! Well, I certainly hope you like it since you can't return it... That takes a set. I suppose you can always sell if if you're not completely in love with it. I'm pretty confident that you'll love it. You'll have to give us a tone report when you get it! Congrats and best wishes on the delivery!

    Oh and I think the paisley cover will look great on top of all black! What color face plate?
    Thanks a lot. I'm pretty sure I will like it too. Mildly apprehensive but confidant enough to take the plunge. The face plate is "black gold maple". A little Aerosmith looking to me for some reason. I really wanted the plain black, but not sure it's worth pressing for. I think I can live with the gold maple if I can get the Aerosmith thing out of my head.

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    Thanks! Mildly apprehensive but pretty I'm going to love it. The face plate is "Black Gold Maple". Really wanted the solid black but think I can live with it.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Burtrola View Post
    Thanks a lot. I'm pretty sure I will like it too. Mildly apprehensive but confidant enough to take the plunge. The face plate is "black gold maple". A little Aerosmith looking to me for some reason. I really wanted the plain black, but not sure it's worth pressing for. I think I can live with the gold maple if I can get the Aerosmith thing out of my head.
    I'd be shocked if you don't find it a to be a great amp. Whether it's for you, or not, is of course always a guess when you can't play one. I got mine without trying one, too. And I was floored.
    If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your short-wave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV.
    -- Homer J. Simpson

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    Quote Originally Posted by Burtrola View Post
    Thanks a lot. I'm pretty sure I will like it too. Mildly apprehensive but confidant enough to take the plunge. The face plate is "black gold maple". A little Aerosmith looking to me for some reason. I really wanted the plain black, but not sure it's worth pressing for. I think I can live with the gold maple if I can get the Aerosmith thing out of my head.
    Ok, I know the one you're talking about. I guess I didn't realize that was black gold! I think the cover throws it off. The color looks more copper to me. I think it'll look really cool on top of the black big mouth. Can't wait to see a pic... and of course get the tone report. Mine sounded great out of the box, but is sounding even better now as the speakers are breaking in more!

    I take it you saw my thread here. I have the black with charcoal face plates. Loving the look! (Now where's my drop-jaw smiley?)

    Quote Originally Posted by LSchefman View Post
    I'd be shocked if you don't find it a to be a great amp. Whether it's for you, or not, is of course always a guess when you can't play one. I got mine without trying one, too. And I was floored.
    I agree! Taste is so subjective. It's really hard to tell someone they're going to love something. However, with the HXDA I'm pretty confident!
    Last edited by Kine; 06-23-2013 at 10:49 AM.

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    Thanks. I am pretty excited actually. Trying not to get too giddy, but I have a feeling this amp is going to change everything. The stores PRS rep even offered to loan me a 30W version while I wait for mine. Pretty cool. BTW, the front plates are interchangeable and you can buy other colors from PRS. They're not cheap, but available. FYI. Thanks again for everyone's comments, will check back in when I get it. ( Hee hee!)

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    [QUOTE=Kine;82357]Ok, I know the one you're talking about. I guess I didn't realize that was black gold! I think the cover throws it off. The color looks more copper to me. I think it'll look really cool on top of the black big mouth. Can't wait to see a pic... and of course get the tone report. Mine sounded great out of the box, but is sounding even better now as the speakers are breaking in more!

    I take it you saw my thread here. I have the black with charcoal face plates. Loving the look! (Now where's my drop-jaw smiley?) [QUOTE]
    Yep. Saw the pics of your rig I think. Definitely like the charcoal too. Looks killer. Very classy and probably my second choice. Just thought the paisley was pretty rock and roll and it helped narrow down all the options.

  20. #20
    Large Member Kine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Burtrola View Post
    The stores PRS rep even offered to loan me a 30W version while I wait for mine.
    Oh yeah! Do this please! I've been wondering about the 30W version. Give us a report please!

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