Our Vox AC30HW2X Review
The Vox Combo Amplifier is so much more than just the elegant oxblood grill cover and the retro-looking birch ply cabinet. This amp is all business when it comes to delivering that classic style and sound that is going to easily transport you to the golden age of hard rock and blues.
The Vox Combo Amplifier sports the classic two-channel design with the boost channel along with a hot and cool switch and a normal channel that’s indicated by a bright switch. But the magic lies in the heart of this vintage-styled amp, which is its hand-wired turret board assembly that boasts of three ECC83/12AX7 preamp tubes and four EL84 power tubes, along with a GZ34 rectifier tube. However, the cherry on top is the fact that they are all matching Ruby Tubes, so you know you are going to experience some epic tones right out the box.
The incredible range of the Vox Combo Amplifier is what makes it a crowd favorite. Not only do you get an amp that is freakishly loud when cranked up, but the‘voxy’ clean tones are reasonable volumes that we’ve come to know and love.
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Who Is This Vintage Amplifier For?
If you’re looking for versatility, then the Vox Combo Amp has been designed specifically to deliver solid sound quality at all levels. If you are looking for a vintage sound from a box that looks like it just came off the Yardbirds’ stage, then the Vox AC30HW2X should be right up your alley. And if the vintage-styled dual 12” Celestion Alnico Blue speakers don’t get you excited, the sound it produces definitely will.
Those who are looking for a modern touch need not be disappointed with the Vox Combo Amplifier. The folks at Vox certainly thought of their design and the features for the AC30HW2X from every angle. This is evident with the inclusion of the OP mode switch that cuts the power output of the amp to half, adding a chic modern flavor to the otherwise classic tone of this incredibly designed amp.
When it comes to who would love playing with the Vox Combo Amp, the quick answer is everyone. That is anyone who has a keen ear for music and appreciates great sound when they hear it. The AC30HW2X is able to deliver incredibly clean tones. The amp settings provide you with excellent control. This is obvious with the treble controls that have a somewhat dramatic effect on the mids and the top end. The great thing about the Vox Combo Amp is that it can give you plenty of tonal ranges between the bass, treble, and cut.
What makes this amp truly unique is that you won’t have to go through the user manual when you get the AC30HW2X, since there’s no learning curve. This is good news for both beginners who are playing in their bedrooms and professionals who are more interested in gigging. The sweet, rich sound that doesn’t bite the ears also makes this amp the ideal choice for those who are looking to use it to entertain their guests at home or the church.
What’s Included With The AC30HW2X?
The following is a quick breakdown of the features of the Vox AC30HW2X dual amp:
- Type: Tube
- Channels: 2
- Power: 30W
- Speakers: 2 x 12″
- Preamp Tubes: 3 x ECC83/12AX7
- Power Tubes: 4 x EL84, 1 x GZ34 (Rectifier)
- EQ: 2-band
- Inputs: 2 x Instrument (Channel 1), 2 x Instrument (Channel 2)
- Outputs: 2 x Speaker
- 1-button footswitch(boost hot/cool)
The many tweaks and features that have been thrown in the Vox Combo Amp mean that you get to enjoy incredibly clean tones at loud volumes, using the low channel with a cool circuit. You can also use the hot circuit to really boost the volume, and this makes the AC30HW2X a great option for gigging.
Overview of the Features Of The Vox AC30HW2X
One of the first things you will notice with the Vox Combo amp is that its response to pedals is exceptionally well. In fact, this could be the best pedals compatible amp available at the moment at a reasonable price. This means that all you have to do is throw in a delay pedal along with a TS9 and you’re good to go. The amp has been so well thought of and fine-tuned that you get a round warm tone that fills the air regardless of what guitar you use.
Another area where the Vox Combo Amp shines is with its normal channel, which sounds great with the bright on. That being said, it’s just a touch low when compared to the top boost channel, if you’re comparing the two. If you are an avid player or like gigging, then you’ll be okay using the normal channel as a pedal channel and run the pedal through it.
All amps have their downside, and the Vox Combo Amp is no exception. When it comes to downsides, there’s really aren’t that many with this amp apart from it lacking an effects loop, which is kind of a big deal if you want to gig. However, this is easily solvable with overdrive pedals if you like your overdriven leads with delay.
Using the top boost channel along with the high input and half power switch and master can allow you to get a very rich overdrive tone while turning the cut down will result in full-bodied, creamy Warren Haynes-esque tones. While the amp can be bright effortlessly when set properly, the cut tends to tame the brightness. One complaint that some players might have is that once you turn the cut off completely, it can result in a slightly muffled sound. If that is a problem, just go with the Fender 68 Custom Deluxe Reverb Amplifier.
Conclusion – Is The Vox AC30HW2x The Right Vintage Amp For You?
The Vox AC30HW2X is a well-built amp with leather handles that give it a premium quality look, so you know your money has been well spent. When it comes to the sound, the Vox Combo amp delivers in spades, especially considering its price point. If you love great sound and don’t mind lugging around an 80-pound amp to your next gig, then this is going to be the perfect choice for you.
We hope our Vox AC30HW2X review has been helpful to you.