Not feeling the Marshall Code amp

Hello. I am a begginer, not even a year on my path and I don’t really have any music background, so excuse my question… When I started I bought an acoustic guitar and also electric guitar (Squire 40th anniversity Strat SSS). I wanted both to expand the knowledge. There was also a need for amplifier so I got Marshall Code 25, which should be good enough for begginer, affordable and also strong enought for my in-house excersises. And it has bluetooth, which is cool for playing backing tracks… But I kind of don’t find the right sound on it. I updated the firmware and I tried most presets and even tunning them a little with android app, but I just kind of don’t “feel” it. I don’t think the amp is damaged, but I just don’t like it much. I recently bought a Fender Mustang Micro so that I can easily exercise when kids go to bed, and I liked the sound from the start up - without tunning. It’s perfect.
Another thing about the Marshall is that sometimes I am picking up radio signals… which is annoying. I don’t get that with Fender Mustang Micro, so it must be the amp’s fault, not guitar. I still plan to do this insulation shield with copper tape inside the guitar, but…

Should I put in more effort to twick the Marshall since it is digital amp, or is that fairly normall that sometimes you just don’t feel some gear or that some amps just don’t go well with some guitars?
I didn’t had a chance to test it before buying because there isn’t a lot of music stores around my area…
If I sell the Marshall… what else would be a good amp for my Squire Strat? Talking similar budget at Marshall Code 25, perhaps a little more would still work…

You are not alone,I dont like the sound of Marshall amps and Im definitely a Fender amp guy. Saying that, it sounds like you prefer a clean style amp. I bought a Fender Champion 20 for that reason.
Im dont really know much about the amp,but as its digital is there a clean preset? Sadly,a marshall amp will always sound like a marshall .

Both apply. I don’t like my first amp but didn’t really understand why until I had enough experience to identify what it was.

Think about how much time you already put into playing with your amp. You should generally be able to create lots of tones and kind of know how a few of the different models will sound. It takes time to learn this, but you need to fiddle with it to learn.

Do you know what you dislike about the amp? It may be something that can be corrected with the settings it has, but you just haven’t figured out yet.

You mention that the amp is picking up “radio”. What I hear in my gear is either mains hum (60Hz here in the US), and computer RFI. Both are coming through my guitar. Changing the volume on the guitar will reduce the RFI. Also moving away from the computer will reduce it. When on the stand, I turn down the volume , and when playing, I step away from the computer.
For 60Hz, part can be guitar and part can be the cable. I can eliminate the hum with a wireless, but I usually prefer to not mess with charging them. I keep my cable short and made sure to buy a shielded cable that has two conductors in the center surrounded by the shield. Touching my hand to the bridge reduces the hum as well.

The mustang Micro won’t pick up the same noise. No cable and not plugged into to mains. You are probably using this with headphones and those will give you a very direct sound. It may be louder at your ears and we generally perceive louder as better.

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You could always try playing a Les Paul type guitar through the Marshall amp…

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Wonderful logic. “Don’t like your amp?.. you need to buy another guitar!” :smile:

Well after all, buying another guitar is the answer to so many other problems… :rofl:


Interesting. I too noticed that when I changed the volume in the guitar the radio signal was also louder. I plan to do the guitar shielding and then I will check again.

Now that is a good idea :sunglasses:

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In my experience, once you realize that you’re not feeling a piece of gear you’re never going to be satisfied with that piece of gear. If you don’t like it and aren’t getting on with it then I’d suggest selling it and moving on.

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Well, until you sell that amp, why don’t you try to set up a channel with everything at noon and then tweak the bass, treble and mids until you get something that you can stand hearing?
One of my realisations is that even a solid state amp sounds a lot better when it’s a bit louder. So, if possible, try to increase the volume a bit, the speaker will respond differently and your ears too.
Also, I don’t know what kind of music you play but increasing the gain past a certain point tends to turn everything to mush.

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My amp is the code 50 and it has sooooooo many different things you can set. I think the code 25 is the little brother, so I guess you can choose many different settings about preamps, amps, speaker and effects and the hundreds of combinations just like the code 50.

It took me a while to get a sound I want to practice with. It’s kind of harder to learn “playing” the amp than the guitar. :sweat_smile: :hot_face: :sweat_smile:
Do you know the marshall gateway app? This is a great app, where you can make your own presets or download a ton of other users presets.
I would suggest to give your code another try. Hope you’ll make friends with the amp and have fun

Good advice from @Majik in another thread on how to create your tone:


I finished the guitar shielding… I also measured everything with multimeter (ohmmeter-beeper) to confirm that shielding works and also to confirm that grounding is ok (measure between input jack and strings, bridge, …). Today I practiced 2 hours and got no radio signal, so this is good news :slight_smile:

This is the image of shielded cavity:

Meanwhile I did some fideling with Marshall Code amp and I think I discovered what I dislike. It sounds like volume is fluctuating - like I am hitting some strings really hard and other really softly. I am a begginer but I don’t think I am doing it so much. Also the chord changes just doesn’t sound right. I tried it with multiple presets and it is the same. On my Fender Mustang Micro I don’t hear these fluctuations. I did a video recording, but for some reason I cannot upload it to YT. But the video editor shows sound EQ and it is interesting to see these volume jumps on Marshall (left) vs much more steady on Fender (right).
This is a shot from video editor:

What do you guys think?

Why didn’t you shield the pickguard entirely?
I wouldn’t blame the amp for how the chord changes sound.

The pickguard already have aluminium shielding. I just had to add a little bit to complete it.

I know my chord changes are not perfect, but if they sound decent on acoustic guitar and if they sound descent on electric on one amp, why not also on marhall code?

Aw right, I couldn’t tell in the photograph!:sweat_smile:
It would be interesting to hear the recording you mentioned.
Just thinking out loud, is there any chance the Code has any effect on, like pitch shifting or anything and yiu haven’t noticed?
Sometimes the presets might include effects.

Even the preamp or amp chosen may sound like there are effects turned on. That’s how it was with my amp. Maybe it would be worth trying the natural preamp and the classic marshall 100 W or the vintage marshall 30 W poweramp in combination with an 1 x 12" speaker with any effects turned off. :woman_shrugging: