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Microphone Month 5

Fender '65 Deluxe Reverb 22-watt 1x12" Tube Combo Amp - Black Reviews

4.5 stars based on 34 customer reviews
Questions about the Fender '65 Deluxe Reverb 22-watt 1x12" Tube Combo Amp - Black?

Questions about the Fender '65 Deluxe Reverb 22-watt 1x12" Tube Combo Amp - Black?

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Sweetwater Advice

  • Carson McClain

    Charm, tone, vibe, and feel are all words that you'll hear when describing a '65 Fender Deluxe Reverb. Nothing can really touch this classic sound - and that's why owning one is a necessity for any guitar player who's looking to add to his amp collection.

  • from DC April 13, 2017


    Clean or crunchy, you can get those legendary Deluxe Reverb tones. Sweet and lush at lower volumes, push the Deluxe Reverb hard and unleash a monster. All-tubes, this amp loves an overdrive pedal. I'm using the Fulltone OCD now but the TS808 or BD-2 rock it, too. Loud enough to fill a room for small to medium-size gigs. (If you regularly do large gigs consider the Twin or even Super Reverb.) The Deluxe Reverb is an awesome choice for practice time as well. Size and weight make it portable, but the Deluxe Reverb avoids that small box sound you've heard coming from lesser combo amps. The Vibrato/Reverb inputs offer variety and addictive options, though I upgraded the Fender supplied selector pedal.

  • from TX - Texas April 5, 2017Music Background:

    Favorite Clean Tones

    This is a killer amp, I'm a big blackface lover and the 65 DRRI delivers big, spanky, fender clean tones. The C12K delivers extremely bold, percussive bass response when turned up around 3-4, further than that I really couldn't give much details because it's too loud for me. I will say though, the power of turning this amp up is something to behold, it's one of those "oh my god, this is tube distortion?" moments. That is not my intention for buying this amp because this amp is SO loud when it distorts. However for spanky clean sounds this thing is awesome, and don't mistake spanky with tinny, the spank has grunt behind it.

    On a note, the tremolo & reverb are extremely quite, as well the amps noise floor is very quite and comfortable. There is some slight hum when the reverb is driven all the way up, but that's way too much for me. The reverb also sounds good, nice and wet, kind of washy in my opinion but that's apart of the sound. The tremolo is okay, I think it's functions better as the volume is turned up, but at low volume it's just okay.

    Lastly, the tremolo on mine isn't working properly and won't turn on consistently, but I'm not deducting points because it'll either be fixed or replaced.

  • from January 28, 2017Music Background:

    Jaw Dropping Tone!

    Completely and utterly blown away by the warmth, clarity and just flat out awesomeness of this amp. Will be using this amp for the rest of my life. I run a boss noise suppressor, dyna comp, ts808 tube screamer and spark mini boost and I've gotten nothing but complements on my tone using my American Standard Tele. The reverb sounds really great on this thing...the tremolo is really cool. Looks sharp as a tack. Not too heavy to where it's a pain to lug to practices or gigs. Haven't had the volume past 3, but even that is pretty darn loud... I give this amp 5 stars all day long, man. Couldn't be happier.

  • from January 24, 2017Music Background:
    20+ yrs, "pro-sumer"-type player

    Rock n roll in a black box

    You really don't need anything other than this amp, a guitar and a tuner. Flooring the volume (setting it to 10) produces a glorious, warm, glassy, edgy, "brilliant" overdrive. Rolling the guitar's own volume off cleans up the edge, rolling it all the up and this simply little box absolutely roars. Tremendous bite. I play w p-90s mostly and this amp just loves the mid-rangy growl or bark of the p-90 pickup. This amp is also priced at a reasonable human level of affordability which is absolutely factored in to my 5-star review.

    It takes pedals great. I have a boss DS-2 and a T-rex wah, and they both sound terrific through the amp at all volumes, tho the DS-2 definitely behaves differently when the amp is fully cranked. But i'm really finding myself drifting away from pedals at all, because I just love the sound of guitar + amp together.

    Also, I dispute highly this notion that 22 watts "isn't that much." 22 watts is LOUD, okay? I would recommend mic'ing it, or maybe even trying to play quieter.

  • from Wichita Falls, TX October 8, 2015Music Background:
    Hobbyist; praise and worship

    65 Deluxe reverb

    I've had this amp about a month now and I've had time to really play with it. You can have the volume on 10 but it still reacts to how you're attack is on the strings. All my pedals sound great through it and the clean tones are outstanding. Thank you Israel Foster for another pleasant experience.

  • from Nashville, TN June 16, 2015

    My Favorite Amp!

    I absolutely love this amp! It's great for any style of music. Rock, blues, country, and even metal! For metal tones, I run a Boss Metal Zone and it sounds incredible! This thing puts out the best clean tones I've ever heard. If you have the right pedals there's no need for a high gain channel. My PRS Tremonti USA and my ESP KH-2 sound especially amazing through this amp. I wish I had one of these years ago. I've used Marshall, Mesa/Boogie, Krank, Orange, Peavey, etc and this is my favorite of them all. It's a great looking amp as well.

  • from San Jose, CA April 9, 2015Music Background:
    Gigging musician

    Do you even need to read this?!?

    If this amp doesn't inspire you then maybe you should play woodwinds or something. I've owned several Fender tube amps and have NEVER had an issue with any of them. '65 Deluxe Reverb, c'mon do I need to say anything else?

  • from Austin tx November 12, 2014Music Background:

    Great amp

    Fantastic tone. Funny with all the technology today they can't seem to beat the spring reverb from 1965!

  • from West Virginia September 5, 2014Music Background:
    Home studio, multi-instrumentalist, singer/songwriter, gear fanatic.

    Basking in Fender Tube Glory

    Simply everything you would ever want a Fender tube amp to sound like...big, warm, lush, sparkly, inspiring. It's just glorious. I push a Keeley Red Dirt Overdrive through this thing and it's just epic. My favorite Fender amp of all time.

  • from Cleveland, OH March 25, 2014Music Background:
    Life long player, part-time performer

    Classic Amp

    This THE classic amp. It is everything it is cracked up to be. You get that classic fat , warm overdrive sound without having to crank it up to ten. It is a little heavy but you live with it because the sound is fabulous.

  • from Cleveland, OH February 28, 2014Music Background:
    Life long blues and R&B guitarist and performer

    The Real Deal

    This amp is the real deal for blues and R&B tube over drive. It starts to break up at 6 on the volume knob producing the fat tone and sustain this amp is known for. It is also surprisingly loud for the rated 22 watts. This is what I hoped for and more.

  • from Norfolk, VA December 27, 2013Music Background:

    Classic Fender Cleans

    Exactly what I hoped it would be. I am not a heavy metal shredder. I play classic rock and country, some blues with a geezer band. I needed an amp with superior clean tones that would take pedals well and not have to blow the windows out of my home studio before getting that bluesy tube breakup tone I was after. The Jensen speaker is crisp with well defined highs and a bottom end that doesn't get muddy when you push it with overdrive or distortion pedals. The reverb is lush and natural. This amp, as you would expect, is perfect for Strats and Teles, but it also sound s great with humbucker equipped guitars. My PRS sings through this amp. Highly recommended.

  • from Newville, PA November 17, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist and guitarist....

    Your "desert island" amp is right here...

    Full disclosure: I bought mine back in 2003 before I knew Sweetwater existed.

    As I said, I've had this amp for ten years now and it is stock except for new tubes from JJ Tesla. This amp is everything you expect from Fender - clean tones beyond compare, even that IS THE standard and tremolo that is superb all in a 12" combo that drips class. Then it up to 7 and yeah, it gets loud... But it also Crunches in the most pleasing way! I also use Fulltone pedals (OCD and Fat Boost) for more manageable sound levels and they work great. The natural compression the 5AR4 rectifier tube provinces is awesome and I love the way it sags.

    I'd say this amp is suited to just about any kind of music of there be it rock, pop, country, jazz - maybe not metal though. If want a solid state rectifier.

  • from Whitefish, MT October 15, 2013Music Background:

    Sweet Cleans with Reverb

    Own an Orange OR50 and needed an amp for cleans, boy this was it!!! I'm playing stereo with the OR50 and the Deluxe and couldn't be happier. Deluxe is super clean tone, played 65' Twin Reverb, VOX AC30, and 65' Princeton reverb before deciding that the Deluxe was what the Dr ordered. Everyone should have this amp in the arsenal.

  • from Louisville KY September 17, 2013Music Background:
    Semi-pro musician

    Just what I'd expect from Fender

    Just got my new 65 Deluxe Reverb Reissue this morning. I turned it on and let her warm up for about 30 minutes to let the tubes adjust. Plugged my 2012 strat into it and it was like I was sent back in time to my first Fender , a deluxe reverb. I am 57, been playing music for over forty years and have now come full circle back to the amp that started my career in music. There is nothing like the sound of the old fender amps. Clean rich tube sound that can't be beat. I also would like to thank Nick LaMendola, my salesperson. I ordered this yesterday and my wife honked her car horn as she was leaving for work to tell me it was on our front porch. He got this to me quicker than those other online stores. Also, Sweetwater salespeople take the time to answer any question and generally want to get to know their clients. I will definitely call on Nick again! Time will tell if this reissue will hold up to its older counterpart but so far, I'm thrilled with my purchase. Perfect weight, perfect wattage, perfect sound. What more could an old guitar picker ask for! Anyone who's a tone junkie should try one. This amp will hook you and nothing else will compare. If you're thinking about buying, stop! Do it now while the financing is available for this beauty. Definitely the way to go!

  • from Caspian, MI September 7, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    It's everything you'd expect it to be!

    This amp is great. I've seen a lot of post on other fender forums and hear a lot of people worried about the fact that these are not made in the USA anymore and not as good as the original 65's. Well... as with any amp, upgrades will make it sound better. That does NOT mean the amp didnt sound good to start with! This is one of those amps... Sound amazing right out of the box. For most players it really is all you'll ever need. But if you want to upgrade it it can go from great to amazing pretty fast.

    This amp is great for what I do. I love the low wattage... 22 watts is perfect. I can actually use the tubes and get great warmth and tone. For larger venues we mic everything anyway like you should be doing anyhow. Plus i can lock in the sweet spot really easy. I have a PRS 513 and it was super quick to dial in great tone. The tube reverb and trem are great as well! Really like the tube trem!!!

    So if your waiting to own one of the legendary "holy grail" type amp.. this is it. Any player will enjoy having this one in the backline!

  • from Georgia September 1, 2013Music Background:
    30+ years experience of guitar

    Sweet Fender Soul

    I put off buying this amp for a few years because I did not see what the fuss was all about. I currently own a super reverb and wanted something with the same 'tone' in a smaller package for practices/smaller shows, etc... I bought this amp before I even played through one so it was a bit of a risk for me. After a few minutes I was won over. I'm pretty sure most people's expectations are different and this may not be for everyone, but for my style and genre it's more than capable of delivering. Sweet, rich singing tone straight from the box. Don't "upgrade" nothing, there's nothing to change to improve anything. Crank it up to 4 and let it sing, perfect for blues, country, southern style rock. So if you play metal, this ain't your amp!!! If you're looking for something that delivers unquestionable historic tone, here ya go. This amp brings the classic sounds of the old blues players to life and for me, there is NO other amp. Would DEFINITELY buy again if something happened. You won't regret this amp purchase!!!

  • from Oakland, CA August 22, 2013Music Background:
    Serious amateur jazz guitarist

    Smooth Jazz Tone

    If you want that soft, smooth tone for playing jazz standards, this is the amp for you. It's particularly good for comping.

  • from United States August 2, 2013Music Background:


    Incredible sound. Rich, plenty of headroom

  • from Mid Michigan April 7, 2013Music Background:
    lifelong hobbyist

    great amp

    I am somewhat new to tube amps, but this amp has a fantastic fat clean tone, with nice on board reverb. The tremelo effect is neat but not my style. I am running an OCD distortion pedal for some slight overdrive when needed. This with the gibson 335 sounds fantastic. I am very happy with this amp.

    It is loud enough for me to accompany a swing big band in a hall setting with plenty of headroom.

    If I had a complaint it would be that this is pretty heavy so carting it around is a bit of a pain, however any good amp is heavy in my opinion.

  • from Clinton, TN December 18, 2012Music Background:
    Just play for myself now.

    Great amp

    This amp sounds great. Had one in the mid 60's and this one sounds exacly the same. Fender gear has never let me down.
    Played as a pro- amature in the 60's, loved the amp then and the reissue sounds the same.

  • from Philadelphia August 23, 2012Music Background:
    Gigging Musician, Pro Musician

    The only amp you'll need

    What do you want in an amp?
    A Clean Sparkle channel - Well its a fender so thats almost an automatic- This amp puts out the signature clean that made Fender so famous. The tube reverb is superb. There is a reason this Blackface is the sound that digital emulators try to reproduce. Outstanding
    Tube distortion - @22 watts The amp starts to break up at about 5. Push the volume and you get the unmistakable overdrive crunch only a tube amp can give you. The amp is very very responsive to your guitars volume control. Turn the amp up to 7 crank your guitar and and feel the fun! Turn your guitar down and the amp cleans up really nice!
    Do you gig? If you do you know how much it sucks to lug around a heavy amp but smaller lighter amps just dont have the bass or fullness that you need. PROBLEM SOLVED this amp is 40ish lbs which makes it easy to take with you and the 12" Jensen Ceramic puts out a really BIG full sound.
    Work with pedals? HELL YEAH. The key to a great pedal sound is a great clean amp. Again this is a Fender and with the 12" speaker response you'll be very happy
    Volume, If you rock out with a heavy metal band and need stack behind you to be able to hear over the rest of the band, then this is not the amp for you. It gets plenty loud for just about any other type of venue. If the room is too big for this amp, then it should be mic'd anyway and sent of the PA.
    Over all I have been playing for 35 years. 20 of those years as a professional. I have owned Ampeg, Traynor, Crate, Peavy, Fender Super Reverb, Vox. This 65 Deluxe is without a doubt get the highest rating of any amp I have ever owned.
    BUY IT!
    For the guy that had problems with the tubes. Bring it back bro. Try another one. these things happen sometimes. I promise you'll love it!!!

  • from midwest July 3, 2012Music Background:

    Great tone

    Fender is doing a nice job with overall quality in my experience. This amp is no exception. I just can't dial in a bad tone. I'm using it for clean tones only, so can't speak to break-up/distortion goods or bads. But in terms of clean chiming ringing pure sound, I don't know how this could really be improved. Delighted!

  • from Houston, TX March 29, 2011Music Background:
    Rockin' the party

    Great Tone and Very Versatile

    I bought this amp and in short order changed out the stock speaker ceramic speaker for an Alnico Weber Vintage 12F-150 (with light dope). The change in tone (for the better) was more than I could have ever expected. Also had one of the tube amp gurus here in Houston replace some bad tubes with some NOS, reset bias, and upgrade some caps and resistors. We were all amazed at the tone this little jewel produces. The original speaker is a little brittle, harsh and too barky for most purist taste. The Weber has a smoother, creamier crunch to it and beautiful clean tones. I run my Les Paul through Normal channel 2 using a Keely mod TS-9 Tube Screamer, and Keely Compression pedal. Single coil Tele's and Strat's go straight into Vibrato channel one with just a little reverb and vibrato for a nice "John Fogerty" tone. Very versatile amp. Will do anything except syntho-metal. But who listens to that anyway? I have two other completely hand wired point to point tube amps but just keep coming back to this one. It just sounds better.

  • from Portland, In November 23, 2013Music Background:
    Home Studio/Musician

    Nice Amp

    I own a 1972 Silverface Deluxe Reverb. I bought the blackface reissue when it first came out. The first thing I did was change the stock speaker and tubes, don't like the Chinese tubes. this amp has always been a nice amp, but I preferred my silverface because of the point to point wiring in it, it just sounded more open and smooth. Last year I had Kevin@ Uncle Alberts Amp Repair convert the blackface to point to point, what a difference! Love the blackface now, put a 57 and a R101 on the speaker............ recording tone from heaven. I run a Voodoo Labs Sparkledrive 1st in line into a Boss dd3 delay and then into the amp.Don't need a lot of "bells and whistles", just a good amp.

  • from Chicago, IL August 28, 2012Music Background:
    gigging musician, but mostly at church these day

    Great Amp...beautiful Fender tone

    Just bought the DRRI Wine Red special edition with Alnico speaker and it is a gem. I have also owned the standard reissue with the ceramic speaker. These are great amps at great prices.
    I have owned many amps, including boutique amps (currently my Victoria Victorilux 1x15 combo is my main amp, but mostly because it has the volume I need at church--we have a large auditorium). The deluxe reverb is a great clean amp that loves pedals, too. Use an overdrive to push it into a great lead tone. Or plug right in and enjoy...I prefer single coils with this amp, but of course it sounds good with humbuckers too.

  • from Sonoma County , CA January 22, 2011Music Background:

    One of the Fender's that is a must in your backline !

    This one of my favorite amps that I own.
    Yea , the vintage 60's Deluxe's are to die for , but for the money , this
    wonderful amp is a keeper.
    And you don't have to hire a guard to keep watch over a vintage amp
    when you gig.
    I always use when I long for that country / Bakersfield / twag sound.
    So many tubes !
    Such a rich tone !
    Pedals work well with it and single coils , P90's , and Humbuckers all
    sound great with the amp.
    If you want that classic Blackface sound , this is the amp .

  • from Little Rock, Ar November 10, 2015Music Background:
    Own personal enjoyment

    65 Deluxe Reverb Amp

    Its as good as any amp I have ever used

  • from Pa. USA December 23, 2012Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    Amazing Amp

    This is the most clean sounding amp, hard to believe how powerful this baby is with amazing toned. Their is no overdrive but with a great pedal, it is. I have one and other really good amps but this is is a great amp for clubs, studios, recording and concerts.

  • from Mesa, Arizona December 4, 2013Music Background:
    Lead guitar in two bands

    Review of my Fender 65 deluxe reverb

    I only wish that there was more information relating to the dial settings for desired tones. There also seems to be quite a hum that is picked up from the 60 hrtz lights where I play. This might be my guitar pickups on a fender American Standard Stra.

  • from Rochester , N.Y. October 22, 2010Music Background:
    Play Pedal Steel and Fender Jazzmaster over 35 years


    Best little amp weighy in at 22 Watts she has a recifier tube where Twin was solid state with the Deluxe dont change the tube to a solid recifier
    type by doing so you will bump up the powersupply output voltage
    to a high level Fender ran these amps at maximum voltage back then
    recifier is more than adequate 5Ar4 I think on cbs Deluxe it was a 5U4
    full wave Rect tube she has a sweet sound blusey and pretty and for a small club is very good bigest thing with Twin is its massive weight
    but thats only draw back mine never left my house stayed in the basement Eddie Kujawa (Reverbie65)

  • from Austin, Texas January 10, 2017Music Background:
    15+ years in alt rock, metal, psyche rock

    Maybe it just isn't for me

    I ordered this from Sweetwater, and as always, everything was as smooth and friendly as could be! Anyways, I had gotten this amp to replace a recently sold Vox AC30C2X combo. I loved the amp, but the weight of the combo was starting to annoy me and my back. I figured this would be a great solution and I always wanted to experiment with the Fender sound. Now, from all the demos and reviews I read, I was pretty impressed and I went ahead and ordered one. After I unboxed it, the amp looked fantastic and I was ready to dig in...this is where things took a turn...I plugged in with an Ernie Ball Music Man Luke 3 and the amp was very bright sounding. It didn't have that signature low end warmth that I had thought would accompany a fender amp. I rolled back the tone and it warmed it up, but the tone wasn't something I'd rave about. Next, I started to crank it up a little. I had read the 65' had decent headroom for 22 watts but I was already getting some pretty decent levels of breakup at volume 3.5! The Jenson is a relatively quiet speaker, so no way could I gig with this with any kind of clean tone. I extended to my custom made 1X12 and it instantly was much louder and had more decent headroom. But the biggest kicker on this amp has to be the bass knob. It's almost useless the more you turn up. After about 5 or 6 on the volume it become incredibly "farty" and nasty sounding and I had to dial it back to about 2 to make it even useable. The amp has that "amp about to explode" type of sound when you really crank it. All in all, I was severely underwhelmed and returned this for an AC30 Handwired head and let me tell you, that was the best decision I'v ever made. That amp is a tone monster. If I go Fender again, it'll be a Twin Reverb converted to a head.

  • from San Jose September 21, 2016


    In A/B comparisons through the same 1x12 cabinet, my properly dialed in Super Champ X2 head can produce cleans as good/better than the DRRI at a less than a third the price. The SCX2 takes pedals just as well and is much more flexible as a stand alone amp. I wanted to believe the DRRI would be the better amp but my ears convinced me otherwise.

  • from central Florida August 8, 2012Music Background:
    gospel music

    Tube issue

    Still waiting to see what all the fuss is about bad tubes from fender right out of box, what a shame. Amp was a suprize gift from my wife

Questions about the Fender '65 Deluxe Reverb 22-watt 1x12" Tube Combo Amp - Black?

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