Guitarists often mention a seemingly mystical thing called “tone” however this comes from a pursuit of that vintage guitar amplifier tone that appears on classic recordings from the 40s and 50s. In those days the only guitar amplifiers available were small size practice valve guitar amps developed from the technology used in car radio players and home radio units. This was due to the availability of components in what was a new field of sound amplification. It is known that a lot of the old guitar players used valve radios to amplify their instruments, these were modified to take a basic guitar pickup input. This created a random and somewhat unrepeatable tone.
From the 1930’s onward a number of companies began manufacturing small combo valve guitar amplifiers. By todays standards we would call these practice valve guitar amps however back in the day these 1W to 5W amps were the biggest available. These early amps featured valve circuit design technology for converting the small voltage that was generated by a pickup, or microphone, in the guitar body and amplifying it into a larger voltage that could drive a speaker cone and allow the sound to be heard.
Since those days guitar amplifier manufacturers have been trying to recreate the sounds of the vintage valve guitar amplifiers the greats used, some manufacturers have got very close, Fender valve amps and Vox valve amps for instance, but most have failed taking the route of cost saving or mass production and missing out on the actual goal.
Vintage Valve Guitar Amplifiers Tone
When you hear guitar players talking about superior tone and sonic characteristics then it is highly likely this refers to the sound from a valve guitar amplifier. Serious guitar players and valve guitar amplifier enthusiasts will tell you that all tube guitar amps produce a “warmer” sound with a smoother, natural “overdrive” sound.
Overdrive is when the pre-amplifier valves are driven harder, either by the input gain control on the amp being set high or by using a pickup booster pedal, leading to a softer clipping, or distortion, of the input signal. This is then passed to the power valves and amplified to a much higher level to be heard at the speaker. Depending on the strength of the signal from the preamplifier stage the power tubes may also start to clip, adding more sonic qualities.
Check Out These Vintage Valve Guitar Amplifiers
The Bugera V55 Infinium Valve Amplifier Combo has retro design syling and vintage valve guitar amp tone
. Based on the original V55 valve amp design, this full-featured and hand-built, 55W, 2-Channel tube combo amplifier possesses modern features that will launch your tone into the sonic stratosphere. Loaded with 3 x 12AX7 preamp valves
and 2 x 6L6 power tubes
, this boutique-style powerhouse gives you the flexibility of two independent channels and selectable reverb, both switchable via the included footswitch. Add to ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Fender 65 Princeton Reverb Valve Guitar Amplifier Combo produces 15W of pure vintage tube amplifier tone
into a single 10” Jensen C-10R speaker rated at 40W with ceramic magnet. This is a fender vintage tube amp
with a single channel that has two inputs. Included in this package is a valve driven spring reverb. The Fender 65 Princeton has a cult status among guitarists who are seeking a smooth clean tube amp tone for Jazz or Country playing. And ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Fender 68 Custom Deluxe Reverb Valve Amp Combo provides 22W of pure vintage Fender guitar amp tone
from a single 12" Celestion G12V speaker. This is a reissue of the classic Fender Silverface guitar amp
design launched in 68. That year Fender decided to give the classic Fender tweed guitar amps a makeover introducing a new black and silver design style. These amplifiers became popular with musicians across the world for a clean sound that can be driven into ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 Valve Combo Bass Amplifier delivers 45W of vintage Fender guitar amp tone via a pair of 12" Celestion speakers and three switchable channels. The vintage fender guitar amplifier
circuit includes three 12AX7 preamp valves
and two EL34 power tubes
that can provide a clean to hard rocking overdrive sound range. Flexibility is the name of the game for the Fender Bassbreaker 18/30 combo, the latest evolution of the best selling fender amp of all time the ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Fender Blues Junior Valve Combo Guitar Amplifier features real valve tone and classic Fender saturation in compact design with a 15W output into a single 12” speaker. The latest version of the vintage Fender Blues Junior includes a modified preamp circuit that provides a fuller sound with more definition and clarity. There is also a new reverb circuit keeping your tone clear and intact, regardless of reverb level. The Fender Blues Junior is a single channel valve guitar amp with ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
Honkin’ Toms’ Guitar Amplifiers are designed around classic all tube guitar amp circuits and are targeted at blues guitar players. The classic retro styling and all volve circuit is perfect for recreating those blues guitar tones. The Honkin’ Toms’ Guitar Amplifiers are sold via the Honkin Harmonic Shop in the UK. The range includes a number of small valve guitar amps that can be used for guitar and harmonic. See below our list of Honkin’ Toms’ guitar amplifiers below. On ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Laney VC30 Valve Combo Guitar Amplifier (30W) is available in two versions, Laney VC30-112 with a single 12" speaker and the Laney VC30-212 with two 12" speakers. The Lany VC range is packed with vintage warmth and tone, and enough gain for contemporary playing. If you are looking for pure, classic valve guitar amplifier tone
, you need to look no further than the Laney VC30. Designed with a Class A tube amplifier circuit
valve guitar amplifier circuit the VC30 is ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
Magnatone Guitar Amplifiers can bee seen on the back line of famous guitar players like Billy Gibbons. These vintage styles all tube guitar amplifiers have a unique classic valve guitar tone. In the 1930s, Magna Electronics produced amplifiers, Hawaiian and steel guitars. In the 1950s and 1960s, they produced vibrato-equipped guitar amplifiers which were used by musicians including Buddy Holly. Magna began in the late 1930s as the Dickerson Musical Instrument Company founded by Delbert J. Dickerson in southern California ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Mesa Boogie Guitar Amplifiers are manufactured and designed in the USA. Mesa-Boogie is based in California, since 1971, manufactures guitar amplifiers for guitars and basses. MESA was started by Randall Smith as a small repair shop which modified Fender Amplifiers, particularly the diminutive Fender Princeton. Smith's modifications gave the small amps much more input gain, making them much louder as well as creating a high-gain, distorted guitar tone. Prominent early guitar players using Mesa Boogie Guitar Amplifiers included Carlos ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The Vox AC30S1 Top Boost Valve Combo Guitar Amp features a single channel, 30W output into a single 12" speaker. This is an all tube combo guitar amp
with an effects loop and controls for gain, volume, treble and bass. The VOX AC30 vintage valve guitar amplifier
has been an major of rock’n’roll since the 60s with its unique sound that still amazes and inspires players to this day. The Vox AC30S1 delivers the experience of the classic Vox AC30, ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
Valve Guitar Amplifier Collection has been created with the goal of creating a series of high quality tube amplifiers for both amateur and professional guitar players to enjoy. All YUMAGOLD
valve amplifiers are based on classic valve amplifier circuits of the 1950's and 1960's and manufactured to modern standards for maximum performance and reliability. Our all tube combo guitar amplifiers have a great sound quality and classic valve amplifier tone. The current YUMAGOLD
range includes five vintage all tube guitar amplifiers
which ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
The YUMAGOLD YG-05T Practice Valve Amp Combo (5W) is perfect for practice and recording sessions. This vintage styled guitar amp is based on the classic Fender Champ design of 1955 with a 5F2 circuit. This practice valve guitar amplifier
has a 5W output and has a classic tweed covering. The hand wired circuit board with three vacuum tubes has a classic tube or valve amplifier sound with clean sound and tone. This is the baby of the Yuma Gold valve ...
Review Vintage Tube Amp
The YUMAGOLD YG-20T Classic Valve Combo Amp is a clone of the classic Fender 5E3 valve combo guitar amplifier
. This hand wired and made to order guitar amplifier has an all tube circuit which is hand wired and soldered. Manufactured to modern standards for optimum performance and reliability. With vintage tweed covering and sturdy cabinet design the YUMAGOLD YG-20T is ready for studio or stage. For home practice it is advised to buy a valve amp attenuator
to reduce output ...Review Vintage Tube Amp
Some of these vintage valve guitar amps may need a vintage valve guitar amp speaker cabinet to work. Click on that link.
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