Bought for $900 at Guitar Trader. I played it and had to get it.
It has more distortion than anything ever heard before! I love a lot of distortion and I can't get this thing over 7 on the knob. It has 2 channels, one has a cleaner crisper sound, and I like to put the distortion on there for rhythms. Then it has an even more distorted channel that I play leads through. It gets too much feedback for rhythms. I like the tube sound too. But, I read somewhere that people were replacing the tubes, so I did that too, and it kicks even more ass, and the clean sound is better too. If interested contact Eurotubes (I don't work for them, they just did a great job).
It is friggen heavy! Need a dolly to take it anywhere.
construction and quality is great. You can probably drop it out of a truck and it'd be fine.
If you want to rock, this amp rocks. If you want some new amp that has 120 different effects and sounds (I have a Fender Cyber Twin that does that), then this isn't for you. If you want to rock, this is the best amp out there.
This amp has one of the best amp distortions that I have ever heard. With the presence and resonance features its easy to beef up the sound or really give it a top boost. The 5150 combo is 60 Watts (half of what the 5150 Head is) but can get disturbingly loud. Also a great amp for people who don't want to worry about maintenance and repairs. It was designed by Eddie Van Halen and features two channels, Rhythm and Lead (no clean and dirty). Kinda hard to get a clean tone from it but thats why you get two amps and A/B them back and forth for clean and dirty. I'm using a fender M-80 for clean and then switching to the peavey for distortion (which it has alot of)
The Weight of it!!! It weighs 85 Lbs and carrying it by yourself is almost impossible because of the akward handle in the middle at the top.
I believe it is an 11 ply wood cabinet with 2 12's and of course a the built in head w/ the tubes. Built like a U.S. Battleship. Also is a fixed bias so when you need to retube you just plug em and play em. (www.eurotubes.com, Bob Plekta is a great help.)
Overall this amp is great. Lacks on the clean side but its not made for that. Its made for distortion and gain, and it delivers. Works for metal, rock, blues. Can pull off country if you drop the preamp and the rhythm channel. If you need great sound without 100 stomp boxes in front of your amp this is the way to go. Love it!!
The Peavey 5150 2x12 Combo amp is an all tube high gain combo. It runs at 60 watts and has two sheffield 12" speakers. It has a hi and low input, an external speaker out and an effects loop. Unlike the 5150 heads, the combo amp has footswitchable reverb and actually sounds quite nice. The clean side also has a bright switch. It is a two channel amp and the clean channel has a crunch button to make boost the gain quite a bit. The two channels share EQ controls, that can really put some people off, but its pretty easy to find some sort of compromise. Then to top it off there is a master resonance control and presence control. The amp itself is a friggin' tank but I recommend casters and maybe even a back brace. It weighs close to 100 lbs.
I've never had a problem dialing in a 5150, they just like to be played. Everything about the 5150 combo is super usable and I have never had a problem using it.
Naturally I've only played guitar through this amp, but I've used single coils, P90s, humbuckers, bolt on neck guitars, through neck guitars, the works. It can adapt very well to any guitar. Never had issues there. The reverb is pretty lush and made the cleans really surprisingly shimmery and almost pristine. I played a lot of ambient stuff on mine. Then the lead channel has all the gain anyone could need on tap, the amp is a bruiser. It gets some nice hardcore and metal tone. But it can also play lighter styles. The crunch mode on the "rhythm" channel was really nice for stonery prog metal, whereas the "lead" channel was much tighter. Really great sounding amp. My only real beef soundwise is that the speakers could be a whole lot better.
Apart from this amp weighing a ton and the Sheffields lacking in the speaker department this is a very killer amp. I'm extremely happy about it. They are not made anymore but they can be found used for very very good prices so I must say the value is impeccable. Built like a tank and sounds great. If you're a strong person, no reason not to use one.
- Rhythm and lead channels
- 60 watt output
- Global 3 band EQ
- Pre and post drive controls per channel
- Controls for presence and resonance
- 2 12” Sheffields
- Bright and crunch switches for rhythm channel
- Spring Reverb
- All tube (5 12ax7 preamp, 2 6L6 power section)
- USA made
The one big thing to mention is the lack of a clean channel. The rhythm channel can be cleaned up, but isn’t really intended for that purpose. The additional lack of individual channel EQs compounds that difficulty. Otherwise it is a breeze – the inclusion of pre and post controls for each channel, bright and crunch switches, as well as post preamp presence and resonance controls make for an amp that can be dialed in very precisely.
Do note that it is incredibly heavy – I never got casters for mine, and my back paid for it. The 5150 is one of the more reliable amps that I’ve used, never had any kind of issue with it. Doesn’t need to be cranked to sound decent which is pretty convenient. Has plenty of volume on tap for when you want to crank it.
Most people seem to take issue with the cleans on the 5150. No, they aren’t twin reverb cleans, but definitely not as bad as a lot of people make them out to be. With a little tweaking, some reverb, and a slight amount of chorus in the effects loop, you can come up with something that sounds pretty good.
The rhythm channel can be pushed a little for a gritty early rock type sound, but that isn’t really the amps forte. The lead channel just sears, and has more gain than you could possibly use. A little fuzzy at times, and possibly not the most articulate, but a very raw and cutting sound. Pulls off most genres of rock and metal beautifully.
An indestructible amp with tons of gain on tap. These can be picked up for between 4-600 on the used market , which is an absolute steal for what it is. The 5150 is identical to the newer 6505 combo which is currently in production. I like the sound of the combo better than the 5150/6505 head, it is supposed to come with a better factory cathode bias. The stock Sheffield speakers aren’t the best and can use a swap. These haven’t been made in a while under the 5150 name, so if you find one chances are it’ll need a retubing – don’t forget to add that into the price negotiation.