1966 Fender Vibrochamp
The Champ series was introduced in 1948 as an entry level amp when the Princeton was upgraded. This particular style is built around a 12AX7 preamp tube, a 12AX7 tremolo tube, a 6V6 power tube in a Class A configuration and a 5Y3 tube rectifier, generating 6 watts. This circuit was unchanged from 1966 to 1982. My particular amp is a excellent example of the 1966 black face Vibrochamp. The original speaker (a Jensen Alnico) was actually too dirty for my taste, so after carefully packing it away, I replaced it with a recent ceramic Eminence. This is my standard band practice amp, and despite is low power, it is plenty loud enough for the practice room if a really clean sound isn't needed. Of course, this is possible due to the quieter drumming style of true blues drummers, and keep things tolerable for the harp player. It is too dirty at practice volumes for clean chording, but either of the Princetons serve quite well there. I believe that an optimum small club setup is a Princeton for rhythm work, and the Vibrochamp for lead. I believe that every guitarist should own one of these, and excellent '60s silver-faced models with identical circuitry can be had any day of the week from Guitar Emporium. Dave Carlson (the Catfish drummer) borrowed it for some recording with his other band, and the very English guitarist was quite shocked to find just how funky old '60s Fenders are. A Marshall enthusiast, he found out what many other guitarists learn in the studio - little tube amps scream in the studio. There is a ready modification that converts the silverface variants to tweed specifications, and I may try that at some point on a silverfaced Champ.