10/15/2016

Review: Vox AC4TV 1x10 4w Tube Amp


In my seemingly-unending quest for the "perfect little tube amp," I finally followed my gut and picked-up a used AC4TV from a Sam Ash in New Jersey off of Reverb. I'd played the 6.5" and 8" speaker models in the past and, while I liked the features and generally liked the sound, I always think bigger is better speaker-wise. I usually like 12" best but when I realized they come standard in 10" these days, I started trolling-around for one.

While there are several versions of the AC4 being made, the AC4TV is the only one that has a power attenuator built-in allowing 1/4w, 1w, and 4w operation. This is huge in terms of practicality. I've either gone directly into a mixer via a line-out (an OK option) or put a mic in front of my amps (the best option) for live use and low-to-middling stage volume is absolutely necessary with the kind of musicians I usually play with and locations we play in. Even with most low-watt amps you've still got a lot of volume to contend with if you want a delicious, just-breaking-up tone. With the power stepped-down it's easy to grab the tone needed at a lower volume that's somewhat comparable to acoustic instruments that might be sitting next to you.

Anyhow, I'm pleased -- it's a very simple amp and it sounds excellent. The next step, though? That grill cloth and badge is getting swapped for some vintage horsey western motif pronto.

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