06 Feb Introducing the “Wizard Vintage Classic 100W” with AC/DC’s “Rock ‘n’ Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution” Cover
Update: please note, this post now includes Angus Young’s “official” amplifier settings!
Please read below.
Time for the write up.
As I had said briefly earlier, it had been years that I heard of the Wizard amps. Who hasn’t (interested in AC/DC, that is)? Already a few years ago I had tried to purchase one, but I was refused it, as I think that time (maybe 6 years ago) production had ceased temporarily. Then it has started again. After watching several clips of the various AC/DC soundchecks and backstages of the recent AC/DC tour (Black Ice), I decided to research the “Wizard” thing a little more in detail and really got interested in their sound. I got in touch with Mr. Rick St. Pierre, who is current AC/DC amp tech and has been so for the last 20 years (at least) and talked briefly with him.
The first amp I bought was the Vintage Classic, as I was convinced that THAT was Angus’ amp. But Mr. St. Pierre has also told me Angus uses the Modern Classic, which may even be an amp that Black Ice has been recorded with (NO confirmation from Mr. St. Pierre: only my suppositions). So I bought the Modern Classic as well. Payed in full, I get no discounts naturally or special prices: I am still a nobody and always will.
Several people are asking me right now what I think of these. Which is why I am recording with them (and will do a whole lot more in the following days).
They DO sound great. They have a similar tone one to the other, specifically the Modern Classic seems to be able to reproduce the sound of the Vintage Classic very well. While the Vintage Classic basically has one sound, the Modern Classic has a lot more possibilites.
I’ll say this again: these amplifiers sound (to me) like super Marshalls. Like a Marshall you had always wanted yours to sound like, precisely. RAW, terrific. As you play them, the feeing is of it being a “clean sounding amp”. But the sound recorded is always freaking dirty and raw. Impressive feeling, needs time to get accustomed to.
Mr. St. Pierre also emailed me the exact Angus’ settings for both amps(!), and I think I can share these with you freely. Starting with the Vintage Classic. Let me tell you that the Vintage Classic amount of drive is low; I think there’s less drive on a Vintage Classic than on a real Marshall 1959! But the tone is to die for. So here’s are Angus’ settings for the complete Black Ice tour on the Vintage Classic (which I suspect was the REAL amp most or a large part of the tour was played on):
Wizard Vintage Classic 100
These are not very far from what we already knew and played around with, but these are 100% accurate and coming from a reliable source. I think these are the REAL settings Angus mostly plays at.
In the studio, there can always be exceptions to this when one is looking for a specific sound, so this is NOT the bible. But I think it IS the starting point for everything Angus related of ANY era.
Mr. St. Pierre has also mentioned to me that Angus is using a Shure wireless unit, and that such unit is usually run “hot”, meaning – I am sure – that there is still a boost involved somewhere (either TX or RX). But rather transparent, as opposed to our beloved Schaffer-Vega Diversity System (that remains my favorite of all times).
I have used in this video in fact the SVDS for both rhythm and solo. More bland on the rhythm, just mild boost, while definitely hotter boost on the solo. Same amp settings!
ohigg84Posted at 13:00h, 05 January
I remember talking to Rick too, albeit only via Facebook, and he also told me some things which Angus uses. Such as the Modern Classic,and a Shure wireless.
Unfortunately, the price is too high for me to afford a Wizard, but I have 2 Marshall heads anyway!
aussiePosted at 10:41h, 16 September
hey boys, i thought id post this http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=qtWrArkvrsA
its a guy playing angus’ guitar and his wizard amp.
SoloDallasPosted at 10:44h, 16 September
that is actually Scott Ian, playing with Angus’ amp tech Rick St. Pierre, one of Rick’s amps that he sold AC/DC (this is one of Angus’), a MC (Modern Classic) on one of Ang’s “guest” guitars he has there when gusts come at the backstage.
Not one of Ang guitars that he actually uses on stage (Ang wouldn’t want beating up etc.). However, it was setup a-la Angus.
We knew that one but thanks! 😉
aussiePosted at 11:08h, 16 September
oh ok Fil, i got so excited, i miss seeing your videos and chatting occasionally, time is hard to find.
P.S i was talking with Phil Rudd’ mother last week 🙂
SoloDallasPosted at 11:16h, 16 September
Mee too! YOu don’t know how I am excited, hard to explain. I may be wrong, by we really feel there’s something magic going on. I am being honest like always 🙂
We love this thing – both this blog and the Replica – we are SO attached to both. Like it these were children. And we try and nurture both daily (the blog has gotten less attention from me recently, poor thing 😆 ).
You spoke to whom??? I know I would have broken down and cried 😆
AC/DC are my idols, my heroes. They have been for over 30 years and I know it will stay as such for the rest of me life.
aussiePosted at 12:27h, 16 September
phil rudd from acdc- i know his mother she lives close by 🙂
AngusRudd1019Posted at 02:51h, 17 September
Phil Rudd is the ONLY drummer for AC/DC…Have you spoken with Phil ever?
Malcolm_prodigyPosted at 19:32h, 04 April
Hey! New here on the site but loving it so far! Do you know what Malcolm used on the Black Ice tour? Amp settings? I was inclined to say the Marshalls behind him but im not sure.