Watch the addict twitch. Another alley trip. And you should have known better.

KingsXJJ

Roadie
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693
A/B’d the Friedman BE-100 Deluxe versus the EVH 5150 III 6L6 50 watt head. $4k versus $1.35k.

The Friedman is top notch and ultimately more flexible. But if you like what the EVH target tone offers… save some cash.

It’s too close to call for me.

So. I returned the Friedman BE head and bought the 100 watt EVH Head for well under the cost of a single Friedman BE head. Saved 2k.

your mileage may vary. Glad I tried it…
 
Me following the journey…

Always Sunny Fx GIF
 
On another forum I'm on there's a long running acronym; JBA5150

Every time someone would come in and ask for amp recommendations and list out all the options they wanted and tones they were going for, the answer was always "just buy a 5150". The variants are included in that, for sure. Maybe even more so at this point.
 
I think the EVH heads are the cheap sleepers.

5153’s are so ubiquitous in certain circles I hesitate to call it a “sleeper”. It’s on the path to being one of the eras defining amps. I’m terribly guilty of this myself, but $1,500 isn’t exactly “little Johnny’s first budget amp” price. :ROFLMAO:

I owned a Stealth 50 and it was badass. Full stop. I only stomach my decision to sell it because I replaced it with an SLO30, which is a cheap sleeper (There I go again) compared to the SSV2 I keep looking at longingly. :rofl
 
And I think the 5153 is prettier. I like it when I can just look at a piece of gear and smile.

Bonus: the 50 and 100 heads are my first 6L6 amps. Only had EL-34’s or 5881’s before…
 
Played a 50W 5153 recently. Compared to my SLO clone the amount of gain is just unusable (for me), when using medium to high output pickups.
I lived on nothing more than 2..2.5/10 on channel 3, and on 5..6ish on the crunch (!) channel.
I mean, ok, for a fluid lead I'd dial in more gain, I guess, but...no, not for my style of rhythm playing.
Just don't understand, why one would build so much gain into an amp.
With all that said: it actually sounded really good 😊.
They "only" had a Runt 20 there, which I liked as well, but I think I've overcome that BE-family sound for my playing style.

I consider the Friedman BE family of amps to sound good for what they are, but it wouldn't be my first or best choice.
Btw, in Germany most of the big Friedman heads cost more than four grand these days, and you're not having a LED on that damn thing, which shows you on which channel you are. I mean, come on, Dave, that's not rocket science ...
 
Played a 50W 5153 recently. Compared to my SLO clone the amount of gain is just unusable (for me), when using medium to high output pickups.
I lived on nothing more than 2..2.5/10 on channel 3, and on 5..6ish on the crunch (!) channel.
I mean, ok, for a fluid lead I'd dial in more gain, I guess, but...no, not for my style of rhythm playing.
Just don't understand, why one would build so much gain into an amp.
With all that said: it actually sounded really good 😊.
They "only" had a Runt 20 there, which I liked as well, but I think I've overcome that BE-family sound for my playing style.

I consider the Friedman BE family of amps to sound good for what they are, but it wouldn't be my first or best choice.
Btw, in Germany most of the big Friedman heads cost more than four grand these days, and you're not having a LED on that damn thing, which shows you on which channel you are. I mean, come on, Dave, that's not rocket science ...
A 5751 tube swap in the right place (or two) totally solves the gain issue. I think Eddie went crazy on the gain for two reasons… using the guitar volume rolled down allows for a user adjustable boost without the need for an external pedal by rolling it up. Ride the lightening which is the volume knob baby! It also allows single coil and low output pickups to swim effectively. The fact that one can achieve their goal simply by turn the gain to two or even one makes this not a deal killer for me. He knew what he was doing. But again, for those wanting the gain knob in a higher position use a 5751. May help with noise too.
 
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Just compared a JJ100 to a vintage Silver Jubilee, and a Badlander 100.

The JJ sounded good, but I’m just baffled why the Friedman, made in the same state as the Mesa, is so much more expensive.
 
I’m here to add little to no value… but I could never buy the 50 watt versions of the EVH amps. 100 only after hearing the models side by side.

At lower volumes the 100 watt’rs still sounded better to me.
 
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