Amp News

March 17th, 7.30pm - be there and you could win an HT5 too!

 Blackstar make arguably some of the greatest valve amplifiers and pedals that money can buy, and with their new HT Venue range right around the corner they’ve decided to host a demo night with one their prized endorsees – Jamie Humphries. 

The event is taking place next Wednesday, the 17th March, at the Stoke Pub Function Room in Guilford – tickets cost £5, and are available here.

It’s being held in conjunction with Andertons Music and string/guitar producer extrordinares Ernie Ball who, to show their gratitude, will be giving everyone who attends a free pack of EB strings. 

Finally, freebies we can use! Makes a change from all those wafer-thin guitar picks…

The showcase will run from 8pm-10pm (doors at 7.30pm) and will have neck-master endorsee Jamie Humphries showing off the whole HT Venue line, using an array of Ernie Ball Music Man guitars.

The man himself is a real expert of guitar playing who, in addition to all his promotional work with Blackstar, does scores of instructional videos for the highly-revered Lick Library website and DVD collection.

Check out the man himself shredding on his YouTube channel.

Blackstar have yet to showcase their fancy new HT Venue range of amps in the flesh, which include 20, 40 and 60 watt combos, (as well as various head versions and matching cabs) that should plug the gap between the high-end Series One amps and low wattage HT-5 amps that the company produces.Jamie Humphries, along with other Blackstar reps, will be on hand to demo the amps and show you the way around the new gear.

If you want a preview to what you can get your hands on at the event, then have a watch of this Andertons video demo of the HT20 and HT40 combos.

A fiver for an evening with some of the best valve amps available, demonstrated by a truly talented player. Throw in the free pack of strings and it’s a pretty sweet deal!

For more info and to purchase tickets, visit the Andertons product page here.


If this project goes well enough, Slash won't be using that amp for much longer!

Another video blog on the Marshall website has revealed more progress in the development stages of Slash’s recently-announced amp head – the Marshall AFD100.

The head, which is still in its early production stages, is set to be a replica of the amp Slash used during the recording of Guns N’ Roses’ rock classic, ‘Appetite For Destruction’ – an amp which has since been lost in time.

This latest video update, number five so far, sees Slash and some of the R&D team at Marshall discussing the type of output tubes the amp should have and (rather disappointingly) which amp it should be based on.

This hints that the AFD100 may turn out to be merely a signature version of an existing head just with some custom tubes thrown in as opposed to a totally new amp.

This is early stages though, so we’re trying not to cast too much judgement just yet!

The story behind the amp Slash actually used on Appetite For Destruction is a bit of a complicated one. There are a few versions of the story floating round in Internet land, some of which are not even in the right ballpark.

The most persistant one, and the one with the most credence, is that the head that our curly-haired friend ended up using was an old 1959t Super Tremolo, modded by an amp tech by the name of Tim Caswell.

The tube-driven tremolo unit was removed and modded to add another gain stage to the circuitry.

Before hitting Slash’s hands in the studio with GNR, it was used by George Lynch while he was on tour and then rented out by Slash before AFD’s recording. That’s right, the amp used by one of the world’s most famous bands on one of the most famous records in rock history was just a rental from a guitar store.

Though story has it that when it came time for the band to record AFD, the amp was already out on rental, so Slash had the store mod another 1959t in the same way.

Since then, both those amps have been lost to the sands of time – enter Marshall’s AFD100 head. Hopefully Marshall and co. will see the light and decide not to base this off a JCM800. There’s already a plethora of those amps, signature or otherwise, out there available.

Even though the choice of 6550 tubes instead of the standard EL34s would give such an amp that bit more bite and bring it closer to that classic tone, it still wouldn’t be the same.

Fingers crossed that the next video update will bring slightly more promising news – I’m not calling it quits on this one just yet!

Source: The Marshall AFD100 Blog