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Chat with Dean Markley and Greg Farres of UltraSound Amps, Experts in Acoustic Sound

Chat live with Dean and Greg from 10am-12pm Pacific Time (12 - 1 pm CST and 1 - 3 pm EST). Any questions entered on 11/23 and 11/24 will also be answered by Dean or Greg so that everyone gets a chance to participate no matter what their time zone or work schedule.

Win an UltraSound Amp and a Dean Markley Guitar. Enter the giveaway...

UltraSound Amplifiers is now proud to be a Dean Markley owned company.
Early in 1998, UltraSound produced its first acoustic amplifier. UltraSound saw a need in the acoustic amplification market—for an acoustic amplifier that would replicate the exact tone of the guitar and other acoustic instruments. Through thousands of hours of fine tuning circuitry and testing and designing hundreds of different speaker configurations and sizes, the marvelous transparent acoustic tone that UltraSound Amplifiers are known for was achieved. [Read more.]

Born in the tiny farming town of Bennington, Kansas (population 650), Dean Markley picked up his first guitar at age sixteen and played for three years in local bands before going to work for the Bowman Music Company in St. Joseph, Missouri. In 1969, a single 45-minute phone call convinced Dean to pack his bags and come out west, where he ran the Santa Clara location of Roger Calkins’ music store for two years, selling instruments and equipment to the thriving bay area music scene. [Read more.]

Greg Farres was born in Salina, Kansas on January 9th, 1959. In 1979 Greg Graduated from Kansas State Technical College with a Degree in Electronics.

In the fall of 1979 Greg began work for JMF Electronics, in Salina, Kansas, as an electronics technician testing and repairing digital scales and guitar tuners. After about a year JMF designed it’s first guitar amplifiers. These were known as the JMF Spectra series amplifiers. After a successful launch of around 10 guitar amp models, including Bass amps and PA systems, Dean Markley purchased JMF Electronics in 1983. The company then became known as Dean Markley Electronics, Inc.. Greg stayed on with the company as a technician and eventually became plant manager. Along with managing the plant, Greg worked side by side with Dean Markley to develop the Dean Markley Signature Series amplifier line as well as the K-Series amp line, and established overseas manufacturing support for the K-Series line. In 1992 Dean Markley sold their electronics division and Greg moved on to a manufacturing job in Des Moines, Iowa with UJC Electronics. [Read more.]

Tags: acoustic, amps, dean, farres, greg, guitar, markley, sound, ultrasound

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I am, as many, are on the never ending quest for pure acoustic sound (i.e.hearing/recording/preforming a full, open, acoustic guitar) without setting up 6 microphones.
What inovations are you working on to futher the illusive quest for the holy grail?
Modeling only further clods the spectrum and puts the elusive tones out of reach.
Can you help us?
Chuck Stevens
I am assuming you have a good Pickup in your guitar. And you are searching for some REAL GUITAR tone. Probably would like to hear your guitar, louder, not changed. That is what UltraSound is all about. They have the most transparent (meaning the tone is not changed, if you dont' want it changed) of any acoustic amp out there. And they work on ANY acoustic instrument, equally well. I think you need to play an UltraSound amp, something like the DS4 or larger. And you will be happy!!! be sure to test out a PRO250!! That is the Mutha of the line. I use that one myself and totally love it and its Tweeter Volume control. You can surgically tune in your tone.
I am fairly new at the guitar playing & sound amplification of music. Can you explain the benefits of tubular amps opposed to solid state amps? Or is there a difference? I just want a really good acoustic guitar sound to come out of the amp. Thanks
Norm Scott
Hi Norm,

Tube amps are usually used for lead guitar. They produce a warm tone with very good distortioin characteristics. An acoustic guitar has a much wider frequency range so solid state works very well for this. Also, a "full range" PA type speaker is what is required to acheive the ultra low frequencies and crystal high frequency that is required to amplify an acoustic guitar.
I am a beginner guitarist learning on an acoustic electric guitar. I eventually would like to get an amp. My knowledge on amps is very limited, just starting to learn. I am curious if there is a good amp that would work well with both an Acoustic Electric and and Electric guitar. I would like to eventually get an electric guitar as well. Thanks, Gary
Hi Gary,

No-one makes a "dual" amp for both acoustic and electric guitar. The reason for this is cost. To get good tone for both you need different pre-amps, power amps, and speakers. In the end it is much less expensive to produce two different "single" amps. Plus from a manufacturers standpoint, there must be a sufficient market to make it feasible to develop a product like this. I hope this answers your question.
Hello Dean,

I just viewed a recent tape of Jeff Beck live in concert, he of course, plays electric guitar, but the amazing sounds and gorgeous music emitting from his Strat don’t seem that necessarily restricted to solid body electric; I wonder if with the right strings and the proper amp system, one could come close to that kind of ethereal sound and sustain on a good acoustic. Is this wishful thinking? Are the two instruments so far apart?
What you want to do would be nice. But that is a pretty tough way to go. The best thing to do is get a set up with a Strat and some great effects and a Dean Markley CD60 All Tube Lead amp and GO FOR IT!!!!! You will have a great time and won't wreck your guitar or amp trying to get those tones. Keep your acoustic, acoustic (well with a pickup and amp) but use your acoustic rig for that and your electric rig for the other.

craig morrison
Good morning to all. Dean & Greg are here, if anyone has any questions.
I have a Pro Mag Gold Pickup. BTW, the sound is wonderful, very natural. I want to get one for my Alvarez 12 string but the sound hole is larger and the pickup won't stay in place. Do you make ones with larger wood frames, or is there an adapter I can get?
I jam with a plugged-in alt country group with my acoustic guitar. Any suggestions for how to cut through all those Teles without simply just turning up the volume? Gear is Martin D-18GE with K&K, Orchard Di and Genz Benz LT150 (sorry). Matt M


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