Pros: This is a great sounding amp.
PEAVEY CLASSIC 50/410 COMBO AMP
There are few things that sound as good to my ears as the sound of a good tube amp cranked up. But with so many amps out there to choose from, it is not an easy task to narrow down the many good amps that are around to invest one’s time and effort in to really testing out and listening to, and perhaps to potentially buy. I will try to help you narrow down the field by telling you about one of my favorite tube amps. Today, I will be discussing the all tube Peavey Classic 50/410 Guitar Combo Amp. This amp was originally introduced was back in 1991, but the original chassis has been updated. All the great sound and tone of the original remains. The Peavey Classic 50/410 Amplifier sells for a discounted street price of $899.99. Read on and see why I like the Peavey 50/410, and if after reading this you decide that you like what you have read, stop in at your local dealer and decide if you like what you hear coming out of the Peavey 50/410.
Before I get into a description of the sound of the sound of the Peavey Classic 50/ 410 Guitar Amp, I would like to spend a little time reviewing some of the controls, functions, and features of this great little amp. Starting with the FRONT PANEL we first come to two guitar jack inputs. The first is labeled NORMAL INPUT, and the second is labeled BRIGHT INPUT. Both of these inputs will accommodate an electric guitar or similar instrument, but the BRIGHT INPUT yields a more trebly sound and an enhanced high frequency response, similar to what engaging a bright switch might sound like on another brand of amp (i.e., such as a Fender).
Next in line we come to a dial labeled NORMAL GAIN, and this controls the volume level of the Normal Channel. Adjacent to this is a dial labeled PRE GAIN, and this controls the input volume level of the Lead Channel. A dial that is labeled POST GAIN is next, and this is used to control the overall volume level of the Lead Channel. Adjacent to this we have a dial that is labeled REVERB, and this dial controls the amount of Reverb that can be added to the signal. The Reverb can be turned on or off remotely by use of the included footswitch.
Adjacent to this are dials that are labeled TREBLE, MIDDLE, and BASS EQ, and these three dials control the amount of high, mid, and low end frequencies. Next we come to the MASTER VOLUME, which controls the overall volume level of the amp. Next we come to a dial that is labeled PRESENCE, and this is an active tone control that can boost the extremely high frequencies as much as 6dB. Next in line we come to the CHANNEL SELECT SWITCH, which can be used to select between the LEAD or NORMAL Channels. Next we come to a STANDBY SWITCH, which allows the owner to keep the Classic 50 in either the active or standby mode. This is a nice feature because it permits one to keep the tubes hot, while the amp is in the standby mode. This prevents one from having to turn the amp completely off in between sets, which keeps the tubes from cooling down completely, and then re-heating all over again a number of times during an evening, which extends tube life. This feature can save one a lot of money over the long term, as replacing a whole set of tubes can be a very costly experience.
Turning now to the BACK PANEL of the Classic 50/410 Combo Amp we have two SPEAKER OUTPUT jacks. One is rated at 16 Ohms and the other is rated at 8 Ohms. When both jacks are connected, the amplifier impedance is 8 Ohms for both jacks. At the other end of the BACK PANEL we come to a jack labeled REMOTE SWITCH JACK, which is where the optional footswitch can be connected. The footswitch can be used to choose the LEAD or NORMAL Channel, as well as turning the Reverb off (if it has already been turned on at the FRONT PANEL). Next we have a jack that is labeled EFFECTS RETURN which is where the output from an outboard effects device would be plugged into. Lastly, we have a jack that is labeled EFFECTS SEND, and this is where one would connect a quarter inch jack to at one end, and the other end of the wire would go to the input of an external sound effects device.
And now, I would like to spend a bit of time discussing some of the other specifications of the Peavey Classic 50/410 Combo Amp. This amp puts out 50 Watts RMS into either 8 Ohms or 16 Ohms. This amp uses three 12AX7 preamp tubes and four EL84 power amp tubes. The tube section is also cooled via a small fan. Power is sent to four 10 inch Blue Marvel Loudspeakers. The amp is covered in a classic Tweed colored vinyl (black is also available, but I really like the Tweed look on this particular amp), with a dark brown grill cloth. Adding to the nostalgic appearance is the fact that the dials are “chicken head pointer dials,” and the controls go from 0 to 12. This amp is also relatively compact in size, and it is 24.125 inches Wide, 24 inches High, and 14.875 inches Deep. It is a bit heavy to lug around however, and it weighs in at 61 pounds.
Well how does the Peavey Classic 50/410 sound? The best way that I can think of describing the sound is to say that it sounds roughly sounds somewhere in between a Fender and a Marshall amp of similar speaker configuration and wattage. This was the same impression that I had when I also tried out the Peavey Classic 50/212 earlier that same day. I tested the Peavey Classic 50/410 with a Fender American Series Stratocaster. The NORMAL CHANNEL sounded very crisp and clean, and had a very Fender like sound quality to it, and it was very reminissant of a Fender 1965 Super Reverb Combo Amp. The sound was quite good, and the Peavey Classic 50/410 was able to accentuate all of the spank and sparkle of the Fender Stratocaster that I was playing.
I then turned to the LEAD CHANNEL. I was very impressed by the sound of the amp in this Channel. I was able get a nice rock guitar sound out of the amp, and by varying the controls, I was able to get the Stratocaster and the Peavey to duplicate the sound of the Stratocaster that Lynyrd Skynyrd achieved on their classic hit Sweet Home Alabama. This amp was also able to yield a great country twang when it was set to do so. I was also impressed with the clarity and mellow smooth sound I was able to get from this amp when I played a bit of jazzy rhythm guitar through it.
The bottom line for me is that I was very impressed with the Peavey Classic 50/410. This is a very versatile amp, and it is capable of delivering a wide variety of sounds. It seems to be able to handle just about any type of music, and to do it quite well. By this I mean to say that the Peavey Classic 50/410 seemed to do more than to just be getting by or cutting it, but rather to actually do a very fine job at reproducing the types of music that I was asking it to reproduce. It was able to handle the highs and lows of the guitar, as well as sound quite good on rock, blues, and country styles, and I was very pleased with it sonically across the board.
Well, thank you for taking the time to read my review of this great little amp. But now, if you will excuse me, I must get back to my practicing.