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             02 June, 2020

Category:  Articles » Arts & Culture » Music


The Marshall Stack Amplifier

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2007-03-17 08:01:52     
Article by Gareth Owen

Marshall Amplification is a company located in Britain. The specialty of Marshall Amplification is electric guitar amplifiers. The Marshall amplifiers have gained a lot of recognition and are extremely admired among the guitarists. One of the best combinations that most of the pop artists love to have is either a Gibson Les Paul or Fender Stratocaster with a Marshall Stack Amplifier. These days the pop music is a lot dependent on the classic Marshall Stack, which just sounds awesome.

The full Marshall Stack consists of one head that contains the actual amplifier on top of the two stacked 4x12s that are the loudspeaker cabinets and each of them contains about four 12 inch loudspeakers that are arranged in a square layout. On the top cabinet, there are two loudspeakers that are angled in a slightly upward fashion and that is something that gives it a unique appearance. If a single cabinet is used then the entire unit is given the name of half stack.

The Marshall Stack Amplifier was first introduced in the early 1960s. Both Pete Townsend and John Entwistle of the band The Who were the first ones to use the Marshall Stack. It is being said that the first Marshall Stack Amplifier of 100 watts was made for Pete and John when they were looking to buy the equipment when their equipment got stolen. Initially the double cabinets were made but they did not appear practical due to their weight and then they were converted into a single cabinet, which then became the standard.

Later both Pete and John were doing experimentations on the Marshall Stack Amplifier and then started using the 200 watt amplifiers that were connected to the guitar through a Y splitter. Unfortunately, The Who went into a suit with the Cream and Jimi Hendrix and hence was not able to take all their gear up for overseas concerts and it was Cream and Jimi Hendrix who were seen with the Marshall Stack Amplifiers in their tours and were considered as the ones who pioneered the Marshall Stack Amplifiers.

With time, the surge for more volume grew by the different bands and for this reason in the 1970s the band Blue Oyster Cult used an entire wall of full stack Marshall Amplifiers. Then other bands such as Slayer and Yngwie Malmsteen also used the wall of Marshall Stack Amplifiers. Along with them were Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman who were playing in front of a total of 24 cabinets as well as Yngwie who conducted concerts with 31 stacks.

Most artists used the dummy cabs that are placed on the stage for visual effects. These cabs did not contain any speakers for ease of transportation and lifting. In most cases there were only two or four cabs that were powered as using more could cause problems with the mix in a live show.

Along with the Marshall Stack Amplifiers there was also a new technology that was introduced known as the Combo, which included amplifiers and speakers in one case. They have produced a lot of variations also known as the classic stack design, which includes Marshall Micro Stack and Marshall Mini Stack and the Marshall Mini Stack is about 10 inches in height and runs on batteries.

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