Considering a Ceriatone Yeti or Molecular

I've listened to numerous videos of both, for what that's worth at least, plus read the input from people who've owned them on this forum, TGP, etc.

I'm really wanting a core Marshall tone, but with some tweakabiliity and tone shaping options that I can't get on a stock 2203. It seems like both amps with the Era switch off will get me in that territory, and then I can add a pedal out front or swap in some different clippers on the Era switch to tailor things. If I went with the Yeti I'd probably have Nik add an NFB control and buffered loop. If I go with the Molecular Nik said he could move the internal trimmer to a second external Gain pot like on the Yeti. I'm not sure what I'd be losing by not having the Pussy Trimmer though. Any thoughts from those of you in the know?

Whatever I get I'm thinking of ordering it without the trannies and choke, and buying Classictone if I still can, or Heyboer. I've never worked on an amp, but I'm experienced with wiring my guitars and making my own cables. Based on that, should installing the trannies and choke myself be reasonably within reach?

Thanks in advance.
 

FourT6and2

Well-known member
Either amp is fine because they're the same circuit and a day with a soldering iron and you can turn either one into the other. Go with the one that has the higher voltages. If you order without transformers, then you can just spec whatever iron you want. So... I dunno. Without changing anything in the circuits, I'd go with the Molecular. Pussy Trimmer is useless. It just replaces a resistor in the typical voltage divider on V2a to shunt signal to ground to reduce gain. There are better ways to do that. Honestly, you'd be better off removing the Pussy Trimmer and replacing with 470k resistor and then just turning the gain down if you want less gain...

Out of the box the Yeti is smoother and darker. Molecular more raw and angry and punchier. But really... study the circuits and you can see the differences pretty easily and decided which one you want. If it were me, I'd just build one from scratch and make whatever changes you want to tailor the sound to your tastes but the Molecular is closer to what most would consider a solid hot-rodded Marshall circuit. The Yeti is too polite for my tastes.
 

fek

Well-known member
I had a Yeti for a bit a month or so ago. The Era switch is very cool and does what it says. The P Trimmer was interesting and opened up some additional fine tuning options. Lot's of tweakability in that thing.

At the end of the day while the Yeti sounded very cool, I ended up with options paralysis and couldn't stop f'ing with the bright switches, twisting the gain knobs, and adjusting the trimmer. The Molecular would probably have been the better option for me but the Yeti is very cool if you like to tweak. I am just not that guy.
 

ClintN667

Well-known member
Honestly just order a molecular and keep the iron. I've had Ceriatone with their Iron and without. Unless I have a particular set of transformers laying around I need to use I would just order with theirs. I dont think you would see a dramatic improvement with Classictone or heybooer.
 

bubbastain

Well-known member
Honestly just order a molecular and keep the iron. I've had Ceriatone with their Iron and without. Unless I have a particular set of transformers laying around I need to use I would just order with theirs. I dont think you would see a dramatic improvement with Classictone or heybooer.

I agree. The Molecular is a super cool amp as is. No need to complicate things. I had a 50 watt Yeti and a 50 watt Molecular. Both were very cool, but ultimately I liked the Molecular more. I prefer that it had one gain knob. I hate two gain knobs! The loop also had a volume knob which I like.
 

mr.Brown

New member
I’ve had a Yeti 100 for a year and a half. I’ve been very pleased with what I’m able to get from it. I’d like to get my hands on the 101 All access. I’m more interested in that than the Molecular.
 

SpiderWars

Well-known member
I tweeked my own homebrew to my tastes having not seen the Molecular schematic and basically ended up with a Molecular with different clippers and my NFB/Depth was slightly different. So I guess I like Molecular.

Also agree with 46&2 on...everything he wrote. I find the P-trim pretty useless, set and forget for me.
 

FourT6and2

Well-known member
Can either one of these also do a real JCM 800 tone? Or is it modded JCM 800 only?

Modded 800 only. Even with the clippers off, you're still goosing the first two stages and getting more gain than a stock 800. You're biasing V1 a and b with 2k7/.68uF cathodes and V1a has 330k plate load. The Yeti is a little darker/smoother though. You can get decent stock 800 tones if you turn the master up all the way and use the two gain knobs on the Yeti as a gain and channel volume.
 

Kapo_Polenton

Well-known member
Sadly, if you want an 800 or a plexi, you need to stick fairly close to the circuits of those two amps. They might be one trick ponies but they will always do everything well with the right support cast of pedals.
 

SpiderWars

Well-known member
Agree, you really need that 10k cathode. It's got a lot of asymmetry in the clip. I think that's what gives it that crushing/pummeling tone when cranked or boosted. I'm more of a plexi guy but still love that boosted 800 tone.
 

fusedbrain

Well-known member
Agree, you really need that 10k cathode. It's got a lot of asymmetry in the clip. I think that's what gives it that crushing/pummeling tone when cranked or boosted. I'm more of a plexi guy but still love that boosted 800 tone.
+1
Ya need the second stage to have the 10k cold clip cathode R to maintain the 800 vibe.
If you want more gain, add a bypass cap to the V2a 820R cathode resistor, or add a gain stage after the cold clipper.
 
On the topic of JCM800-type builds, I've seen references to different brands of components like Sozo, Synergy, and TAD Mustard. If I'm going for that 800s barking midrange, pissed off Marshall sound, are there ones that are going to be better? From what I understand, Nik will substitute for an upcharge.

Thanks again.
 

SpiderWars

Well-known member
I doubt you'll hear a difference between any of those. A lot of what you're talking about will be affected by the treble peaker cap, bright cap, and treble (tone stack) cap. All ceramic disc will slice your head off and all silver mica might not bark enough for you.
 

fusedbrain

Well-known member
If you are looking for "barking midrange, pissed off Marshall", I'd stick with the TAD's Ceriatone uses as stock film caps in their British hot rod amps, or if it's a home build go with the TAD's or iC MPW.
Having said that, I would agree with SpiderWars that you will get more voicing mileage out of messing with the treble peaker caps, the bright cap on the gain, and the tone stack treble cap.
And the higher voltage ones sound better ( 1kv mica or 1 - 3kv ceramic )
Those ubiquitous, small black 500v silver mica's are notably bland sounding to me, but 1 or 2 can be strategically installed to smooth out an overly "rip yer face off " amp.
It's always about the sum of the parts.
 
I ended up ordering a 2203 rather than Yeti or Molecular. I decided I really wanted the base tone of the 800 as the foundation. Having Nic add a three way bright switch, buffered loop, and NFB pot. Seems easy enough to tweak on my own from there.
 
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