Yngwie’s New Marshall Has…Built In Effects

January 11, 2011 | By | 1 Reply More

Here's the back panel – whoa!

Here's the back panel – whoa!

Whether Yngwie Malmsteen’s playing is your cup ‘o tea or not, one thing can’t be argued: his tone is woody, always has been. A boosted Strat into cranked 50w metal-panel Marshall Mark II heads – schweet!

So when I was tipped to the fact that Yngwie has a new signature Marshall head coming out (thanks Jon!), I assumed it would be a replica of the aforementioned head.


It’s a replica (in some way) of a 100w Super Lead…with a Joe Satriani-esque built-in noise gate, as well as boost and reverb, and a built-in attenuator. Okay, not all effects, but WTF?!

Of course all that added-in stuff doesn’t automatically mean “bad” – and with Yngwie’s ears the head no doubt sounds good – but it sure as heck is surprising.

Here’s more on the head, from the Marshall press release:

Based on the power and tone of the “Holy Grail” 1959 Plexi head, the YJM100 offers the ultimate Neo-Classical amp [eye-roll] with the following cutting edge features:

1. Footswitchable* Boost with controls for Volume and Gain on the rear panel.

2. Footswitchable* Noise Gate with rear panel Threshold control.

3. Footswitchable* studio quality Digital Reverb with rear panel Level control.

4. Footswitchable* Series FX Loop.

* A four-way Footcontroller comes supplied with the YJM100, facilitating switching of Booster, Gate, Reverb and FX Loop features. This Footcontroller has been designed using Marshall Amplification’s patented STOMPWARE Technology, allowing the user to connect it to the amp using a standard 1/4″ guitar cable.

5. Half power switch which takes the output power from 100W to 50W when engaged.

6. Built-in, infinitely variable Attenuator control, which can take the output stage from 100% to 0.01% and anywhere inbetween, while retaining the all-important tone and feel of the all-valve power section. This means the output power can be reduced to a staggering low of 0.05 Watts when in 50W power mode. [And I am left to wonder of this is why there’s a half-power switch – so someone can play their 0.05-watt Marshall?!]

7. Valve Failure Circuitry: meaning that if one of the output valves develops a fault, a visual indicator on the rear of the amplifier shows which one is working incorrectly. This “roadie friendly feature” will save valuable time getting the amplifier back up and  running again, should a valve failure occur. [But don’t try this at home, kids!]

8. Self-biasing circuitry to ensure proper power valve operation each time valves are  changed. [I like this!]

The front of the YJM, click to see way bigger (source: Marshall).

The front of the YJM, click to see way bigger (source: Marshall).

The back of the YJM, click to see way bigger (source: Marshall).

The back of the YJM, click to see way bigger (source: Marshall).

What We Don’t Know

Note the line above that says the amp is “based on the power and tone of the ‘Holy Grail’ 1959 Plexi head….” Based on. What does that mean?

Does it mean that it’s the same basic circuitry as a Super Lead, with 4xEL34 power tubes? Or does it just use that circuitry as a starting point?

Or does it mean that it uses Super Lead tone as a starting point?

The tubes aren’t specified in the release, but if you stare long enough at the blurry back panel photograph they look like EL34s….

Bottom Line

> Will it sound good? Probably.

> Does it make sense? Not sure.

> Will it be expensive? The MSRP isn’t announced yet, might be announced at winter NAMM this month, but for sure it will be several $K.

> What does Yngwie say about it? “Vintage look and sound, with incredible versatility  and features. Remember you can’t buy just one!”

“Vintage” and “versatility” don’t exactly go together in amps. But I am digging the idea of a built-in attenuator – if it sounds good.

Yngwie playing and singing ‘Manic Depression.’ I was impressed when I heard this – takes guts, and he makes it his own.

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Onu1jU2m3e4

Category: Marshall, Yngwie Malmsteen

Comments (1)

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  1. Torsten says:

    "Built-in Attenuator" my Aunt Fannie. They're doing Power Scaling, and avoiding the term like the plague.

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