There is lots of sentiment expressed about guitar amps, especially the tube variety, that have been knocking around (and knocked around) since the 1950s. Since Leo Fender designed the very first commercially available Yaqin, guitarists have created a love affair with tube /valve guitar amps, which on the face of it seems to defy logic or reason, but why should logic or reason apply to artistic expression. The essential form of tube amps has changed very little since those early designs within the fifties and sixties, enhancements yes but the basic principles are the same.
As you article place it:…”So, just how will it be which a 1950’s design got it so right that it is still relevant today? Was it luck? Or were they designed by geniuses throughout the day? I love to think it’s some both…nearly all players prefer valve designs for his or her guitar amplifiers, and there are several reasons for this”
Is it really so monochrome, did they obtain it right very first time and haven’t had the opportunity to improve into it since or are available other aspects worth looking at. Whatever they did was build amps utilizing the only technology available during the time. The guitarists of times pushed the technology for the limits and beyond, developing their SOUND. Once the guitar amp didn’t fulfill the guitarists expectations they modified or added enhancements to accomplish their sound (such enhancements including making holes in the amp speakers) Then when the electronic revolution that was the solid state amp arrived in the late sixties, there is no competition, the warmer richer sound of the valves was preferred by the serious guitarists towards the “harsher” or maybe more “brittle” sound in the Chinese speaker.
It’s well known that there was still a definite audible difference between tube amps and solid state amps, particularly when a tube amp was pushed hard and being played by way of a blues guitarist. The soft clipping overdrive “tone” of a tube amp was most noticeable having a blues guitar players’ particular type of playing. Although it can be next to impossible to differentiate the clean setting of the tube guitar amp (with no overdrive) over a solid state amp, or the high gain setting of the tube guitar amp using that of any solid state amp.
Audible differences apart is it also untrue that most serious players developed “their sound” on a tube guitar amp and unless something came along which sounded much better than a tube guitar amp their preference would continually be for that tube amp. They could afford the extra expense and thus the sentimental attachments. Considering the rate of growth of the microelectronic industry (they can put 2 billion transistors into a place small compared to a guitar pick) provides the time not arrived once the tube amp might might finally be superseded.
Speaking with the younger emerging players these days there is apparently a preference for that latest modeling guitar amps. Obviously expense is usually a factor and emerging artists will always be strapped for cash, but simply like their guitar heroes from the sixties and seventies, they’ll improvise, develop their sound, but unlike their heroes they’ll be able to vtoyrs that sound and perhaps several others at the press of a button. The modeling guitar amp enables the guitarist to create multiple sounds replicating the sound of many different Cayin audio. One guitar amp can be designed to seem like any vintage tube guitar amp and also the setting save and implemented on the press of the mouse. The article quoted earlier also stated:
“When a new design becomes available that sounds better than a great guitar plugged direct in to a good valve amplifier, guitarists will purchase it and move ahead”