As the saying goes: “Time flies when you’re having fun.”
Well, we’re having a blast…what does time do when you’re having a blast?
All kidding aside, we’ve been hard at work all spring and early summer to bring you some tasty treats from Resonant Amps and Field Effects. New demo videos are due out for the Barely Legal 18 and Trophy Wife 30 amplifiers very soon. All of our amplifiers are currently available from El Diablo Amps and Guitars here in Minneapolis, and will be available in the coming weeks via Destroy All Guitars. We’re also very excited to announce that Field Effects are now available at Rock ‘n Roll Vintage in Chicago, Illinois.
February saw the launch of the newest aspect of Resonant Electronic Design in the guise of The Devil’s Advocate. All-tube High-Fidelity amplification has been on our minds for a long time, and we’re planning to expand this wing of the company significantly in the coming months. The Devil’s Advocate is an amazing centerpiece for a truly hi-fi home stereo experience, and not surprisingly, equally at home driving a pair of studio reference monitors. Is a “studio” version in the works? I’ll never tell!
Speaking of Field Effects, expect new pedals/products later this summer. First will be code-named “Quark-Star”…there are a couple of short demo videos available on YouTube, go check em out! Expect to see it in it’s final incarnation very, very soon. I’m just a board-layout and some artwork away…
We hope you’re having a great summer. Stay cool, and have fun making music!
As the saying goes: “Time flies when you’re having fun.”
Peter and I make a concerted effort to keep our personal, political, and religious opinions out of the scope and operation of our business. Politics etc shouldn’t be a part of making music everyday, and we strive to build products that help people enjoy making music.
The issue of marriage equality is one that is quickly becoming too important to stay officially neutral. Peter and I both feel strongly that all citizen’s relationships should be equally represented under the law. If one group is favored, or another neglected, whether we recognize it or not, our republic suffers. I would like to be able to look my daughter in the eye when she’s old enough to understand these issues, and tell her unequivocally that I supported, publicly and privately, the right for all Americans to love and marry whom they so choose.
This post is not intended to antagonize our customers who feel differently on the issue. It is intended specifically, to publicly state where the ownership of Resonant Electronic Design stands on marriage equality. That is, wholeheartedly in favor. Human solidarity demands no less.
In anticipation of the discovery of the Higgs Boson, and to celebrate our country’s independence on this Fourth of July, we are very proud to announce a development of our own here at Resonant Electronic Design.
What was once just a simple idea will soon become a reality. We have developed a pedal we call The Small Hadron ColliderTM. It will feature Volume and Tone controls, and offer a deceivingly wide array of tones. Ranging from a dark and tweedy bite, to a midrange-y crunch reminiscent of the earliest amps from the British Isles, and the chimey grind of your favorite amps from liverpool, the SHC will deliver all the harmonic excitement you could ever need.
Getting these tones won’t be easy though - each and every one of these pedals will be hand-tuned by Wes and me. As a result, these will only be available on a limited basis. On August 1st, we will be launching a Kickstarter campaign to raise the funds necessary to complete this project. There will only be 50 SHC’s available through this campaign, and contributing to the campaign will be the only way to get one of these pedals. Contribute early to ensure that you can get one!
Sometimes I sit back and think about how I got to where I am - I’m sure we all do. I think about what drove me to music and what made me want to take things apart and put them back together again just to see how they work. I think about how my mom put up with my loud band rehearsals in the garage when I was in high school, and how she let me pursue a degree in audio engineering, or how she didn’t laugh at me when I wanted to start a recording studio (and actually seemed happy when I did).
Those of us who work in the music industry - as musicians, producer, engineers, gear-builders, and everyone else, do so because of we have a passion. A passion that drives us no matter what. Maybe it was all the classic rock and oldies my mom listened to when I was young. Maybe it was the deep respect she has for art, music, and culture - or maybe it was always with me, from birth.
In any case, she always supported my decisions (even if it was begrudgingly sometimes), and she cares very much about the company Wes and I started (even though she has no idea what a “JFET-based Fuzz pedal” is).
So today, on Mother’s Day, I think about how lucky I am to have the mother I do.
So if only for one day, I’m telling all of you to put down your instruments, and spend sometime with your mothers. If you can’t do that, give her a call, or at the very least, spend some time thinking about the influence she had on your life.
Mothers are very special people and Wes and I want to say ‘thank you’ to every one of them out there.
This morning, I got out of bed begrudgingly, and after giving my 2 month old a bottle and watching her grin and coo at me a little bit, I hopped on Facebook. I browsed around a little, started thinking about something clever I might post, about politics or religion, and stumbled over the news that Jim Marshall had passed away last night.
I still have my ragged and worn out Marshall Amplifiers t-shirt that my Mom bought after I got my first Marshall…a vertical input, 50 watt JCM800 and matching 4x12 straight cabinet. Over the years, that amplifier came with me when my bands went on tour, drove my roommates in college completely crazy, and gave me a lower back injury. I loved it dearly, I wish I had never sold it.
I never met Jim Marshall, but his influence on music is undeniable. Tonight as I sit on the couch, watching “The Office”, wishing I had my JCM800 back, I’ll be drinking in the honor of Jim. Cheers everyone.
brianwilliamgreen said: how much does the fuzz go for would love to use one on some projects and in some videos demo it out in different things.
The Acceleron Fuzz usually retails for $225. You should be able to get one from any of the dealers listed on the website www.resonantelectronic.com.
Let us know if you have any questions about it or any trouble finding one. And if you do pick one up and make a video, let us know! We love to hear what people make with our gear. Thanks.
This first video was really fun to make. We’ve always had a special place in our hearts for the Klon Centaur. It’s a legendary pedal and sounds amazing. We had been getting some feedback from customers who said that they felt our Manifold Drive could do similar things. We were very flattered, but a little doubtful. We decided to shoot a comparison video where we tried to match some tones that the Klon can produce. To our surprise, the differences were much smaller than we were expecting, especially considering how different they are in topology. We definitely weren’t disappointed with how the Manifold performed.
This one is a demo of the new Acceleron Fuzz. We’re really excited about this pedal. It does everything we love about vintage fuzz pedals with the ability to go into modern fuzz territory. The best part is that it always retains control and definition. Lately it’s been getting a lot of buzz (pun intended) online, and everyone seems to freak out when they hear it. We couldn’t be happier with how it turned out.
TIMES ARE CHANGING…
One of the most magical times in amplifier history, at least in my mind, are the early 1960’s. It’s a period which saw the implementation of the outboard reverb tank, separate amplifier tops and speaker cabinets, tone rings and vibrato circuits. Until 1960, virtually every Fender amp (with a couple of note-able custom exceptions) had been built as combo units, the largest of which had two 12 inch speakers, or four 10 inch speakers. But it’s the quirky aspects of the Blonde and Brown era amps that intrigue me the most.
THE SMALL AMPS
There are only a couple of circuit variations across this period, which Leo seems to have implemented in order to establish suitable variation in his amp line. For the most part, the smaller amps didn’t share much circuitry, to the point that the Champ didn’t even change from the classic 5F1 circuit until 1964 when the amp changed directly to the AA764 Blackface circuit. The Princeton and Deluxe amps shared a standard Tremolo circuit, which continued to be implemented in different variations through the Blackface and CBS eras. Their pre-amps are simple, Volume and Tone controls, and the Deluxe is the proud owner of a second “Bright” channel which simply lacked a plate resistor bypass cap. These amps are WELL known for their barking, midrange growl, due to the lack of a standard, Treble/Middle/Bass tonestack, which tends to scoop an amount of midrange. The Princeton is easily my favorite of this group, due to the 10 inch Jensen C10R speaker known to be able to chew a hole directly through a dense mix.
THE BIG, BAD, BLONDES
The larger amps, differed mainly in cabinetry, speaker complement, and feature set (added tremolo or one of two variations on the Brown vibrato circuit). There are really only two preamp variations, but several amps (the 6G8 Twin and 6G4 Super) which had much different tone stacks than the rest of their Blonde counterparts. The standard pre amp, found in every amp from the Normal channel of the Bassman to the Vibroverb (the only amp of this period to feature on-board reverb, but oddly enough, tremolo, not Vibrato!) specified high value Treble pot, 330K Analog taper with a 70% tap, which was connected directly to the Bass control. This allows a larger sweep of treble, without being completely interactive with the Bass control. It’s a configuration that’s pretty unique in amplifiers, and it’s part of the reason that players like Brian Setzer and the Reverend Horton Heat play Blonde amps over their Blackface counterparts.
ENOUGH GEEK TALK!
Alright, alright! I get WAY too into the minute, technical details for my own good. It’s probably not right for me to take it all out on you. Sorry. Why do we all love Fender amps of this period so much? Because of the quirks of course! The way these amps distort, sort of halfway between Tweed and Blackface and sometimes even a little Marshally, seems to stir the soul of players who love the later Fender sound, but just want a little MORE. They’re not as delicate or prissy as their Blackface cousins, nor quite as rude as a few of their Tweed relatives, they’re essentially perfect for any situation. I love driving Brown amps with a great booster, just to the point where they start to protest, then back off a little on the volume knob until the chorus, when I just let ‘em wail. That feeling is utterly simple and perfectly sublime, even when the volume is tearing my head off.
Now, go plug into something, anything, and forget your weekly woes for just a little while!
Time for another installment of our “off-the-beaten-path” amps series. We were going to wait until January to post it, but we’re amp/pedal nerds and just couldn’t wait. I’m going to jump across the pond and talk about a British amp that’s very different from the Silvertone Peter discussed.
The first Selmer Zodiac I played has haunted me ever since. It’s not a “classic” amp to me, at least not in the same sense I might consider a JTM45 or a 5F1 Champ to be “classic”. The Zodiac is quirky, almost strange feeling, whereas I know exactly what to expect out of a Champ or JTM45.
One fall day in 2002 I had the opportunity to play one at Solidbody Guitar, here in Minneapolis, and I’ve been chasing an aspect of that tone ever since. Channel 2 has a push-button notch filter, which behaves like no other amplifier circuit currently available today, adding charm to that channel of the amp. The opto-coupled tremolo doesn’t have the familiar Fender wobble, it’s stronger and deeper…or perhaps I was simply swayed into a pseudo-hypnotic state by the pulsing blue-green eye on the front of the amp that indicates the tremolo speed.
The particular model I played was a 50 watt MkII, which is fixed biased, and is not quite as squishy as it’s 30 watt, cathode biased little sibling. The tone circuits are also uniquely interactive, and the large plate resistors make the tone stacks more lossy than the familiar Marshall or Fender style tonestack. The overall tonality of the amp is nice, full of midrange bark and snarl.
The original 50 watt amps had a pair of ceramic 25 watt Celestion speakers, in this specimen they had been replaced by grey Alnicos, which were far more common in the 30 watt model. I wish I knew what had happened to that amplifier…I would snap it up in an instant given the opportunity.
(P.S. We hope everyone has a great holiday vacation lined up! We’ll be enjoying some good food and brews with our families just long enough to recuperate and start in on a new run of pedals. Keeping our dealers stocked up is getting harder and harder, but that’s how we like it!)