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June 2017 Giveaway

Vox AC4HW1 4-watt 1x12" Handwired Tube Combo Reviews

5.0 stars based on 10 customer reviews
Questions about the Vox AC4HW1 4-watt 1x12" Handwired Tube Combo?

Questions about the Vox AC4HW1 4-watt 1x12" Handwired Tube Combo?

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  • from NW Indiana December 20, 2016Music Background:
    35 years rock and blues

    Love this Amp

    Let me start by saying I have been playing for well over 35 years. I play rock and blues exclusively. I own several American Fenders, a Les Paul and a Paul Reed Smith. I also own several 7 other fine amps by Blackstar, Fender, Vox, and Egnater. I no longer play the clubs but I record a lot of original tunes in my home studio and I do not use computers of computer software to record or manipulate the sound. I plug in to an amp and I mic it to get the sound to my console. This Vox and my Fender Bassbreaker 007 combo make stellar recordings. Low wattage is where its at. I crank this amp and my ears don't bleed but I get all the sweet, singing, buttery overdrive and sustain without using a pedal. I don't care how good the pedal, there is nothing like playing through an amp that does what the pedal tries to do. Having said that, this amp takes pedals very nicely. If I want to paint with a different tone, I'll step on a stomp. The clean tone of this amp is also great. That Vox chime is beautiful but the dirt is what really shines on this amp. Pleasure to records with.

  • from Massachusetts December 8, 2016

    Hot Vox

    I am exited to finally have this Vox 4 watt hand wired Amp. Sounds huge for it's 4 watt rating.
    The clean is clean and the dirty is very Phat, I like it a lot!!
    My hat is off to Sweetwater's awesome financing and my sales engineer Frank Gerdts.

  • from Seattle June 10, 2016Music Background:
    Rock star in my own mind

    The real deal

    Don't let 4 watts fool you. This amps volume easily fills my living room. And with the windows open, my neighbors know what song I'm playing.

    As far as tone, this amp covers it in my book. I have a Charvel San Dimas, and I spend most of my time in the single coil neck position. The AC4HW can sing sweet clean, or just get on the verge of breaking up. With the hot setting switched on the amp and using the bridge humbucker, this amp is solid rock and roll. And it will do everything in between.

    Quality is second to none, and the 12 inch Celestion speaker is the icing on the cake.

    Not cheap for a 4 watt amp, but money well spent.

  • from Washington, D.C. April 22, 2016

    Touch of Class

    First time I saw a Vox amp was watching the Beatles, in 1964. We were all so curious about their equipment, back then. But I was always a Fender Blackface kind of guy. Fast forward 40 years. The halcyon years of Fender and Vox are behind them, and profit motives supersede devotion to quality. The Boutique Cloners seize the day, knowing that there is a market, still, for high quality--but at a cost. The old vintage amps can be hit or miss, in terms of stability. So, I admit I was skeptical of this hand wired turret board initiative from Vox, and waited a few years for the capability maturity to kick in before dipping my toe in the water.And man, this amp is great. I had a few small amps, over the years, and this is as good as any of the boutique boys--4 watts can be mighty loud in the studio, and I am amazed at how loud the cleans can get before the arrival of the crunch. The value add proposition here is pretty incredible. It's hard to beat what you get with this deal. And it's a Vox!

  • from Seattle, WA November 16, 2015Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Hard to beat it for classic/blues rock tone

    This is a great-sounding, surprisingly versatile little amp, especially on the "Cool" setting. It overdrives at around 5-6 on the volume, and you absolutely want that power section overdrive to get that creamy sustain and compression that brings the tone to life.

    I must temper my enthusiasm by noting that it really doesn't do jazz clean tones; it just does not have enough clean headroom with only 4 watts driving a very Marshall-y-sounding greenback. I bet the AC15HW2 would do jazz just fine, with more wattage, two channels, more EQ, and a more articulate speaker, but that is a really, really loud amp for home use. This AC4 is just perfect for my own practice and GarageBand fooling around. It completely sizzles playing classic rock tones or blues. Early Led Zep? Dime the bass, treble at 6 or thereabouts to taste, gain at 4-5 and dime the volume. Southern rock? Add a bit more gain and set the volume at 7. Joe Walsh? Engage hot mode and put the volume at 8 or 9 and you'll swear he was in the room. It takes effects really well, too, in spite of lacking a dedicated loop.

    I estimate that this amp cranks out 85-90 db or so in its sweet spot, just a slight smidgeon shy of ear damaging levels, so it's too loud to be a late night bedroom amp and maybe even too loud for apartments depending on how thin your walls are, but quite manageable for daytime playing in the basement or living room. One additional plus of the amp's character is that all that volume creates natural reverb in whatever space you play it in, it's really not dry at all in the sweet spot. That said, I might eventually invest in a Fender reverb/tremolo tank.

    Adding to the living room amp appeal, it looks so handsome with the fawn covering, the diamond cloth speaker mesh, and the nifty creme piping, my wife lets me keep it in the living room. She actually complains when I dust cover it!

  • from Venice, CA July 13, 2015

    Awesome!

    The tone, the finishing... everything in this amp is amazing.

  • from West Virginia July 10, 2014

    Awesome!!

    This thing kills..!! I'm a child of the 60s and I can totally dial in those coveted 60s tones!! Chime Chime Chime!! My 57 American Vintage Reissue Strat sounds beautiful through this thing..I don't know what else to say!! there may be an AC-15 in my future!!

  • from Salt Lake City, UT March 14, 2014Music Background:
    Music Major, Production, Composition, Songwriting

    Best Practice Amp

    Definitely one of the best tube amp under 10 W out there. The build quality is impeccable. The Design is stunning. The tone is even better. It gets very loud for 4W. I'm not surprised that one of the previous reviewers says he is able to mic it for small gigs. I haven't tried it myself but it seems plausible. While it does get louder than you'd think the best part is that I am able to get classic Vox tone at apartment acceptable levels.

  • from June 3, 2013

    I'm gigging with mine

    I've done about 12 gigs with this so far. Definitely loud enough for a club! I set everything halfway up and use the hot setting and high-gain input. When I can, I bring along a 16 ohm 2x12 cabinet with a G12H30 and a Celestion Blue - a very full sound - but I've done 4 or 5 gigs with just the internal 12 and it still sounds great. There isn't a whole lot of headroom as you'd expect - if I'm going to need cleaner lead sounds, I bring along one of my Fenders, too, and use a buffered ABY box, but still use the Vox 90% of the time. Cuts through a mix great. I'm just astounded that I'm gigging with a 4 watt amp.
    For me, the Vox likes single-coils much more than humbuckers and it likes my Tele more than my Strat for some reason. Also, I put some 70s Mullard 12ax7's in and to my amazement, the tubes that came with the amp sound better, so I put them back in and ordered a few more, too. The preamp tube in position 1 is specially selected with extra-high gain on pins 6,7 and 8 and is marked as such. That is literally the first time in many years of playing in pro and part-time pro bands that I've been able to hear an obvious difference in preamp tubes and it was so obvious that my wife noticed, too, as in 'did you do something different to your amp, it sounds buzzier somehow.?' Weird. Anyway, this thing is amazing. The folks at Vox were brilliant to put in a 12 instead of a 10 like the Marshall Class 5.

  • from Kansas March 1, 2013Music Background:
    Serious Amatuer

    Sweet!

    I have an AC4TV and an AC15C1 so why another vox? Well I did some research and was really impressed by what I was seeing with this amp. I wasn't disappointed when it arrived at my door. The amp is good size, between my AC4TV and My AC15C1. The sound is much smoother and richer than my AC4TV, speaker quality is much better and the hot setting is hotter than what I can generate with my AC15C1. I really like the cool setting, it gets a nice grit when you want it, but has pretty good headroom for clean. Put a ProCo Turbo Rat in front of it and it does some pretty good Radiohead Clean~to~Dirty tones. I put my Baby Boom reverb in front of it with just a hint of room or chamber reverb and it's really nice. Amp comes with a footswitch (unlike my AC15C1) that takes you from Cool to Hot modes. And a dust cover is included as well (a first for me!) The volume of this combo is more than that of the AC4TV and approaches the AC15 although there are a lot of tones that can be had without blowing your ears out in you living room. The cost is dear but I am totally satisfied that the tone difference is tangible and well worth it. I could make pretty much any of my repertoire sound great with just a guitar and a cord. Adding my reverb pedal is frosting, but the amp has a creamy tone that makes this an option more than a necessity.

Questions about the Vox AC4HW1 4-watt 1x12" Handwired Tube Combo?

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