1963 Fender Princeton
The Fender Princeton is one of the classic combo amps. This particular example has the "ML" stamp on the tube chart, indicating that it was manufactured in December of 1963. The speaker code is 465-231, signifying that it is an Oxford speaker, manufactured 31st week of 1962. The unusual cosmetics consist of a numbered black panel with white knobs, a solid gray grill cloth and an oversize (19" wide) cabinet. The circuitry uses a pair of 6V6 power tubes, a 5Y3 tube rectifier and two 7025 preamp tubes. The 10" Oxford ceramic speaker completes the package. This is a transitional unit from the original tweed Princeton, and is more similar to the tweed Vibrolux. This amplifier was purchased in June of 1996 from the Guitar Emporium, and is in near mint condition. It has the browner tone of the tweed amps, and is particularly magic with my Jazzmaster. I recently replaced the Oxford speaker with an Eminence Copperhead, which really improved the sound. The Oxford was just getting old, and rather than recone it, my wonderful amp tech, Dave Hirsch, recommended the Copperhead. It gives the amp a bit of a blackface Super sound, increasing the bass response quite a bit. Highly recommended. I also run EL-84 power tubes using THD Yellowjackets from time to time. They rebias the amp to class A, and you get a bit of the Vox/Marshall chime. Usually I switch back to the 6V6s, but it is fun to play around. I also add a Marshall 1X12 extension cabinet for a little more power and bass. Highly recommended if you can find one. Barber Electronics makes a very cool pedal, the BarbEQ, which puts a three band eq with Tweed, Blackface and Marshall voicings in front of the amp. This is the sort of amp for which this pedal was designed, and it is a great combination. I can't say enough about how cool Barber pedals are, and I refer you to my Barber Pedals page for more thoughts.