THURSDAY, DECEMBER 18, 2014

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100% valve driven guitar amplifiers and everything about.

Frontpage Articles, RokStories

The New (Old) Tele

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My recently acquired Fender USA telecaster - probably best one I've played. Beat up but sounds rich, cleans up nicely with volume pot and plays great.

I had just got rid of my owned from new USA Tele a couple of months back, which to be honest I never got on well with, even after swapping the pickups out several times. I've always preferred old guitars with a bit of character and this one fits that bill perfectly.

RokStories

Review Tele With Dimarzio Super Distortion DP318 and Seymour Duncan Vintage Stack

Recently taken a gig with rock band, so needed to hot rod my American Standard Tele.

Just installed the Dimarzio Super Distortion DP318 and I'm blown away by the tone. Can get a nice semi-clean PAF tone with volume and tone rolled down, but when wound up, it rocks.

Sorry for the poor quality vid, but heres a link to me trying it out. Most of the playing is in middle position with Dimarzio Super Distortion in Bridge and Seymour Duncan Vintage Lead Stack in Neck, volume about halfway, wound up more towards the end. Mellow playing after a long day, but pu will go hot when cranked.

The 2 pickups complements each other, giving my that bright humbucking tone that I almost bought a Les Paul Deluxe to do. Absolutely delighted.

Frontpage Articles

1970 Fender Dual Showman Reverb Review

All tube, dual channel 80w amplifier head. This one was a TFL5000x ('X' denoting export market, UK in this case) early silver face, non master volume model. Effects included on-board valve driven Vibrato  & reverb (wonderful according to my amp tech).

It is effectively a head only version of Fender Twin Reverb, accompanied in its day by a towering 2 x 15 Fender speaker cab. Sadly, it didnt come with the 2 x 15 cab, and I had experimented with different set-ups over the years with open back 2 x 12 cabs to replicate the twin reverb sound, but eventually settling on a compact 4x12 Marshall cab.

fender-dual-showman-reverbConsidering the lack of speakers, its a heavy amp, which partly explains why Twin Reverbs are so heavy. Very loud and clean all the way up. When these amps were designed in mid-60's, manufacturers were still seeking clean, undistorted power.

Build quality is excellent, which is to be expected as these amps weren't cheap. The  non-master volume early silver face ones such as this example, although CBS era, were spared many of the unpopular 'improvements' made.

I had owned this amp for 20 years, and in that time, played everything from super clean in a soul band with nothing but a dash of reverb, to 90's era digitally processed rock and most styles in between. It is a loud amp and needs to breath to sound good, meaning that unless using it for rehearsals or gigging, its not really suited as a bedroom amp. I cant ever remember running out of headroom, even when playing outdoors.

Once dialed in, I received numerous comments from other guitarists over the years, particularly following each other on the bills of festivals, that it was one of the best guitar tones they had ever heard, and always get asked about it when I did. It is a little known fact that Hendrix used Dual Showmans in the Studio. This will nail that Hendrix sound with drive pedal & a strat.