It's my understanding that luminaries such as Stevie Ray Vaughn and Keith Richards achieve(d) their unique tone using two amps at once: one dirty and one clean, or some other such dichotomy. I reckon to do that they use a device such as the one in the above web-link.
A few weeks ago I saw a band called the Youngs, from Seattle. Intense stuff... though they sound way better live than on the CD I bought. It looked to me that the guitarist was running an Orange 4x12 combo alongside... uhhhhh... either a Fender 1x12 or 1x15. It sounded INCREDIBLE. The guy was damn good, too, of course.
I also know that back in ye olden days, when bands like Zepplin and Sabbath began filling the big arenas and before concert PA as we know it existed, guitarists would run as many as six full stacks!!! :eek: I believe that even as far back as the 1950s, guitarists would run six 2x12 combo amps at once if they were playing a large hall.
What do I need to do in order to run not two but three amps at once?
Well, the set-up I have in mind might seem goofy to some, but here's roughly what I'm after (assuming I had the $$$ to throw around):
1. There's this Hughes & Kettner head I saw that can alternate between running at 100watts and 50watts... talk about versatile! Furthermore, every last tone imagineable can be dialed in. Sweet! I'd run it through this 2x12 Genz Benz cab I read about that reputedly overtakes many a half stack. I'd run effects (wah, weird pedals like octave/pitchshifters, etc.) through that'un.
The tone I would dial in on this one would be... uhhhhhh... somewhere between metal and Texas blues... errrrrrr....
Imagine a Clint Eastwood Spaghetti Western guitar soundtrack (so how do you do that, anyways?) meets "Voodoo Child" meets the opening riffs of Megadeth's "Sweating Bullets" meets Dick "Surf King" Dale meets Tony Iommi (of Black Sabbath) meets Angus (of AC/DC) on Hell's Bells...
...tuned down to about C# (like Iommi had it) on an H-S-S Stratocaster with heavy 13 gauge strings and a big hard thick pick with (three) fingerstyle thrown in here and there...
...uhhhhhhh... something along those lines. Uhhhhhh... yeah.
2. A Fender 1x12 60watt combo tube amp. Or maybe the 1x15. This one would be all famous Fender cleanness, all the time, and wouldn't have any effects or distortion or anything... except maybe for some of that equally famous reverb now and then, dialed in on the amp itself rather than from a pedal.
3. A Madison 1x12 combo... not sure of the wattage but Madison is, these days, quite renowned for its extreme death/puke/grind distortion/oomph and how everything shines through in spite of the extremity of it all... though they can also be clean as a bell.
Don't know if the three could go together without clashing into awful muddy soup... but I've been entertaining the notion heavily. Okay... so it's something of an obsession.
So anyways, this is where the techie stuff comes in: how would I do it?
I'm thinking two of these A/B-Y boxes with the second one being plugged into the "B" hole of the first.
So, the box that runs the two 1x12 amps would receive the signal through the "B" socket of the first box. Then the head + 2x12 cab would get the signal from the "A" socket of that first box. Then I could cut out the smaller auxilliary amps at will... add 'em in when I like... and then alternate between the two auxilliary amps or run 'em both at once or... yeah!!!
Is that even possible? Or would something fizz out or explode or something? :confused: Do they make an A/B/C-[trident] box that would do all that?
I know it's been done before! With several more!
I hope I wouldn't have to go and dig up equipment that they stopped making in 1974. :(