OD100 Classic Plus vs. Friedman Modded Egnater Seminar Head

Posted by in amplifiers, audio clips, guitar, musical instruments

DSC_0003A while back I had the opportunity to attend Bruce Egnater’s amp building seminar at his shop in Berkley, Michigan.  During this class we learned about the basics of amp building and were taken through the step-by-step process of assembling our own amp – a Mojo Tone JTM45 kit who’s circuit was tweaked by Bruce Egnater to mirror his own design from his modular series (according to Jeff Hilligan its the “3” in the EG 3/4 module with more gain) .  Premier Guitar Magazine was on hand to cover the event and I was featured in this video demonstrating the capabilities of the amp we had constructed.

As much as I enjoyed the experience, once I got the amp home I had difficulty incorporating its tones into my sound and playing style.  As described by the folks at Egnater, the EG 3/4….

Here in our worldwide headquarters, we asked what would happen if we were to take the SL2 and smooth it out a bit for soloing. We darkened it up a bit, and added a touch of mid range emphasis, and created what is the perfect sound for mic’ing through a p.a. system (which is more and more common for you guys that gig regularly).

Channels A and B were taken from the acclaimed Egnater TOL amplifiers and act as great rhythm and lead channels for guys who favor a lead tone that is a little smokier.

Here’s an example of what the stock Egnater Seminar Head sounds like:

Stock Egnater Seminar Head


Since I found this voicing to be too compressed, dark and saggy for my tastes, the amp sat for some time as the backup that never got played.  Fast forward about a year or so and I became aware that David Friedman of Racksystems was offering his services to mod these amps.  After hearing some pretty amazing clips of his “Brown Eye” and “Hairy Brown Eye” mods on a number of sites and speaking with David at length about what type of sound I was looking for (tight, focused, punchy yet warm), I knew I had to have my Egnater seminar head modded to give it new life.  After all, David is Eddie Van Halen’s rig guru so I knew the amp would be in good hands.

As my #1 amp for the last few years has been John Suhr’s OD100 Classic Plus (under the Custom Audio Amplifiers moniker), I though it would be great to compare these two amps so that folks to hear some of the differences and see what they do well.

Guitar used was a Gibson Les Paul VOS “G” ’60 with stock Burstbucker pickups but upgraded with the RS Guitarworks vintage upgrade kit.  Cab was a CAA 1×12 loaded with an Eminence Governor.  Mic was a Shure 57.  I/O was a MOTU 896.  DAW is Ableton Live 8.  I switched between the amps using a Custom Audio Electronics Amp selector.

CAA OD100 Classic Plus Ch 2


CAA OD100 Classic Plus Ch 2 Boosted


Friedman Modified Egnater Seminar Head – Brown Eye – Gain at 5


Friedman Modified Egnater Seminar Head – Brown Eye – Gain at 10


Friedman Modified Egnater Seminar Head – Hairy Brown Eye – Gain at 5


Friedman Modified Egnater Seminar Head – Hairy Brown Eye – Gain at 7


Friedman Modified Egnater Seminar Head – Hairy Brown Eye – Gain at 10