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Author Archives: Dave Hunter

Ronnie Wood’s ’69 Hiwatt 100 DR103


1969 Hiwatt 100 (Model DR103 Preamp tubes: four ECC83 Output tubes: four EL34 Rectifier: solidstate Controls: Normal Vol, Brill Vol, Bass, Treble, Middle, Presence, Master Vol Speaker: four Fane 12s Output: In excess of 100 watts RMS. The written history of British guitar amplification tends to trace the rising importance of power and volume through […]

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The Selmer Zodiac 50

The Zodiac Twin Fifty

An amp maker at the very heart of the British guitar boom of the late ’50s and early ’60s, Selmer was, for a time, the leader in the field, though it’s all too easy to forget. Briefly ahead of Vox, certainly ahead of the fledgling Marshall, this was a company that had it all to […]

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The Fender Showman

The Showman

In addition to several significant shifts in style and presentation, for Fender, the transition of the late 1950s into the early ’60s represented a more concerted push into big-amp territory. Having introduced the 80-watt “high-powered” tweed 5F8 Twin (VG, March ’09) in ’58, this rapidly expanding Fullerton manufacturer sought another model to help take it […]

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The Fender Princeton


1962 6G2 Fender Princeton Preamp tubes: One 7025, one 12AX7 Output tubes: two 6V6GT in fixed bias Rectifier: 5Y3 Controls: Volume, Tone, Speed, Intensity Speaker: one 10” Oxford 10J4 Output: approximately 12 watts RMS For the past couple decades the Fender Deluxe of the ’60s and early ’70s – in its several variants – held […]

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Masco MAP-15


1946 Masco MAP-15 Before Leo Fender’s rise to prominence, which is to say, before anyone knew what the Platonic form of the electric guitar amplifier would ultimately be, a broad free-fire zone existed between general-purpose amplification, PA amps, and guitar amps. Many companies covered all bases, as did Masco, a name that has come to […]

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50 Years of Vox


1966 Vox Guitar-organ and ’66 Phantom XII. The Guitar-organ was a Dick Denney creation that combined the mechanical elements of a Phantom guitar with the oscillators of a Continental electric keyboard. Photo: VG Archive. In an industry hardwired to perpetually churn out a “next big thing,” any design that remains the kid to beat for […]

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Roger Mayer

Straight-shooting Effects Builder to the Stars

In the early 1960s, a young Research Laboratory engineer named Roger Mayer filled his “spare time” hanging out with a jaw-dropping collection of up-and-comers on the fledgling London blues-rock scene, and building effects pedals for these future stars before most guitar players knew enough to ask, “What’s an effect pedal?” Though this would lead to […]

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