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NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - Printable Version

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NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - CTN - 10-30-2014

I really was not expecting to have any new amps, but I listed my red Squier for sale on CL. Wasn't getting any bites, and then the other day, a guy msg'd me asking if I'd be interested in a trade for a "Blackstar HT-5 Metal". He got the model name convention slightly wrong so I asked him if it was the head or the combo. He said it was the head, and that he'd include a marshall 15W cabinet.

I've played the regular HT-5 a few times. And I hated it how it sounded but loved how it looked. It sounded boxy, nasal, and weak in the balls department. I wasn't sure about the HT Metal series so I did some research, and decided that it was worth a shot. So I made the trade today. Got rid of that hideous red guitar (I hate red), got a head that was worth the guitar, and a wee lil' cab to boot. It's not an amazing cab mind you, it's one of the MG series MDF cabs. But hey, I already have a badass custom-made all birch 2x12, and I needed something small to bring to low-key jam sessions and such, so this made sense.

The Blackstar is pretty rad though. Looks okay, but it's got nice girth in the lows/low mids and the mids don't sound nasal. The amount of gain on tap is HUGE. more than my tubemeister, and more organic sounding too, somehow. Reverb is nice, and I haven't yet played with the line out, but it should be interesting. Clean channel is really nice actually, spanky and articulate while retaining a good amount of warmth. Lots of good attack/articulation in the lead channel too. Overall quite a pleasing amp, and definitely a good trade on my part because that old Pro-Tone strat was not getting enough love from me. These little beasties will not only get more love, but more of a workout since I now have access to more varied studio tones.

Sometime soon I'm going to build or buy an A/B/Y box so I can play both amps at the same time through different cabs, and at some point I think I will upgrade the 10" speaker in the Marshall cab, but for now, behold;


[Image: IMG_20141030_165205_zps061bbd9a.jpg]

Apologies for the shitty picture, I'm not Ross Halfin here.
Also, Raph, eat shit motherfucker, I no longer own a squier. :Fyou: huge grin

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - kinnikuman - 10-30-2014

Nice trade cuzza. I want one of those blackstar heads.

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - Agileguy - 10-30-2014

Raditude! I love it.

How does it sound through your 2x12? Better than a regula ht5 I'd assume.

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - lreese - 10-30-2014

[Image: thumbsupemo.gif~c200]

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - youngthrasher9 - 10-30-2014


RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - CTN - 10-30-2014

(10-30-2014, 06:43 PM)Agileguy Wrote: Raditude! I love it.

How does it sound through your 2x12? Better than a regula ht5 I'd assume.

Sounds pretty beastly. I haven't yet had a chance to play it loud at all, but it does sound great. Much tighter bottom end than my tubemeister, and surprisingly there's no shortage of thick chewy midrange (which was my chief complaint with the regular ht-5). The cleans are really surprising me though. I almost never use the tubemeister's cleans cuz they sound kinda anemic while attempting the fender clean thing. The blackstar has really full, warm cleans with a distinct clear attack on the notes. Sounds great.

Takes all my pedals well too.

I bet it'd sound monstrous through a 4x12

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - Securb - 10-31-2014

Beautiful trade. I got my Marshall VS100 for the same reason, low key jam sessions and fell in love with it. I am sure after a while you are going to have some great moments with that setup.

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - CTN - 10-31-2014

I'm already having great moments with it huge grin

Though for jam sessions and the like I'd probably be more likely to take the tubemeister. it's smaller, I have a case for it, and it's capable of being quieter as well as louder (1W, 5W, 18W power scaling).

So far I am loving how even on the neck pickup, the blackstar doesn't flub out or get muddy when the gain is high.

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - kinnikuman - 10-31-2014

Hows the blackstar without pedals?

RE: NAD/NCD Surprise! also, attn: Raph - CTN - 10-31-2014

brutally heavy. I totally do not need any boosts or overdrives to get awesome metal tones.

the fx loop is also capable of running at line or instrument level which is cool. Gives me some flexibility if I ever decide to go back to using rack effects (probably never, but still...)

Also, I tried it out running both amps in stereo pushing a significant amount of volume - enough to make the floor vibrate and hooooooooooooly fack it sounds huuuuuge. Surgical tightness but with this massive growly low end/low mids. The highs from the marshall cab at high volume get a bit harsh and brittle though. I'm looking forward to putting a new speaker in so the highs can be a bit smoother and the midrange and low end a bit more well defined.