Vox updates the legendary AC30 and AC15
(Dave Molter | Posted 2010-02-18)
Vox amplifiers leapt into the public consciousness in 1963 when the Beatles began using their AC30 guitar combos, both onstage and in the studio. Relatively low-powered today, the 30-watt AC30 was at the time comparable with other guitar amplifiers such as the Fender Deluxe Reverb. Although the Beatles connection helped put the company on the map, the AC30's clear, jangly sound kept them there, and even today many guitarists like the sound of the AC30 for the studio and even live gigs.
Now Vox has updated the AC30 and AC15 to create the new Custom Series. Models in the new series include the AC30C2X, AC30C2 and AC15C1. First introduced in 1958, the smaller 15-watt AC15 combo has been the amp of choice for countless guitar players. True to their past, the Custom Series amps rely on 3 x 12AX7 dual triode vacuum tubes in the pre-amp stage, and 4 x EL84 pentode tubes in the power stage of the 30-Watt AC30C2 and AC30C2X. The 15-Watt AC15C1 uses 2 x EL84 tubes.
All Custom Series models offer two channels: Normal and Top Boost. Each channel is equipped with its own Volume control, and the Top Boost channel offers highly interactive Treble and Bass tone controls as well. This powerful channel pairing provides an abundance of tone-crafting control. Both channels utilize the Tone Cut and Volume controls in the Master section. The Tone Cut control operates in the power stage rather than the preamp stage, allowing an additional degree of tone-shaping. The Master Volume control works in conjunction with the individual volumes of each channel to create just the right degree of gain-staging. By balancing the individual and Master volumes, the Custom Series can deliver the coveted clean VOX “chimey” sound, a powerful overdriven tone, and everything in between.
VOX Amp Designers Dave Clarke and Tony Bruno combined the coveted sounds of a vintage AC amplifier with modern changes, giving these amps the extra reliability and tonal palette necessary for modern players. The Custom Series utilizes a solid state rectifier that makes the amp louder, tighter, and more responsive to pick attack while retaining the B-plus voltage, chime, tone and output stage compression of a vintage VOX AC30.
All Custom Series amplifiers provide the Vox Classic Tremolo effect, with adjustable controls for speed and depth. A warm spring reverb is also included, adding spaciousness to the sound. The AC30C2 and AC30C2X offer an additional tone control in the reverb section, plus an effects loop that allows users to incorporate their favorite effects into the Custom Series sound. True Bypass switching takes the entire effect loop out of the circuit.
Standard models are equipped with Celestion Greenback speakers; the AC30C2X is equipped with Celestion Alnico Blues. The optional footswitch provides a hands-free method for turning the Reverb and Tremolo effects on and off while performing.
AC30C2X 30 Watts; 2 x 12" AlNiCo Blue Celestion speakers MSRP TBD Available April 2010
AC30C2 30 Watts; 2 x 12" G12M Greenback Celestion speakers MSRP $1500 Available March 2010
AC15C1 15 Watts; 1 x 12" G12M Greenback Celestion speaker MSRP $900 Available March 2010
Compiled from a Vox press release. For more information, visit www.voxamps.com