The Fender Twin Reverb was not designed for your garage, basement, or living room. A Twin is a serious tone machine that works best at volumes that will attract the police at anywhere except a certified concert hall. While the tone is to die for, your significant other, your children, and your neighbors probably aren’t going to appreciate it the way you do. So, even if it is within your budget to buy one of these wonderful Fender amps, you shouldn’t really consider it unless you live miles from your nearest neighbors and it is a tool you use to make your living.
The Fender Twin – Performance Ready
Hi there. I’m Buddha and you’re watching Doctor Guitar, a show for all your guitarists out there.
Today I’ll show you my second good amp which is the Twin Reverb, the Fender Twin Reverb. As I told you on the episode where I show you where I showed you the my Mesa Boogie Dual Calibre, I was kind of tired of having an amp that that didn’t have any clean tones into it. I was trying to play fuller chords, bigger chords, and the amp would compress a lot with overdrive would be uglier and I was looking for an amp that could play loud clean tones.
The King of Clean – The Twin Reverb
A good friend of mine and a great Portuguese producer told me, “If you’re looking for a clean amp, go and buy the Twin Reverb. It’s the best clean tone you’ll ever have”, and so I did it. I bought a used one from a jazz orchestra guitar player. He was buying a Jazz Chorus and fortunately I was buying the twin reverb. Not that I don’t like the Jazz Chorus, but it it’s really not my thing. So I bought the Twin Reverb and I’ve used it for a huge time for more than 10 years in a row. It was a great amp and I started using it with pedals because it was too clean. So I started using it with a tube screamer right before it so it could compress a little bit. It could get a little dirty, but I used the tube screamer with the gain all off, so it wasn’t almost over-driving, it was just compressing the amp a little bit more. It was giving it a mid boost and it was making it sound more like a Marshall to me, but with the Fender lows and highs that I love.
Then I bought the King of Tone the Analogue Man King of Tone and it all changed. It is an amazing, great, great pedal. It’s one of my favorite overdrive pedals and I used it always on, on the red side, so on the overdrive setting, and I had the yellow side, which is the clean boost, at least as it comes from the factory, you can change it as you wish, but I use it as it comes. I used the yellow side to boost a little bit and sometimes it was more than enough because it’s a volume boost, but it also hits the amp a little harder, so the amp compresses a little bit more and it kind of over drives, and kind of gives me what I need. Then I used the OD3, the Boss OD 3, which I really love. It’s a really great overdrive boost pedal. I used it before the King of Tone so I could overdrive the King of Tone a little bit more. So I would use the King of Tone as I’m using now my Lonestar. I had the Twin Reverb was my clean channel. The King of Tone red side was my overdrive channel or a little more over driven channel. My yellow side on the on the King of Tone was my solo switch on the Lonestar and then I have I had a boost, or a lot of boosts back there, to boost it a little bit more to drive it a little bit more. But I would always drive the King of Tone so I would boost a pedal into the King of Tone. I would never use a pedal into the amp itself, and it worked really well with fuzz, with over drives, with all kinds of sounds, and the twin reverb result is a very versatile amp. I played rock, heavy rock, I play blues of course, I played funk, I played jazz on it. It has a really, really, really amazing reverb and a really great tremolo as all fenders are known for having, especially the vintage models as the 65 Twin Reverb, and the Deluxe Reverb, and the Super Reverb. They all have great reverb and great tremolo and I use it for a long time. But in a show, I was, I did the soundcheck and I left all the pedals on with the transformers, with the AC power connected to the to the wallets and I left it. When I started the show, it was a rock heavy rock band I was playing with at the moment, not every in the sense of leather, leather pants, but heavy playing, heavy stuff with a lot of gaining and power chords in a darker band and when we started the show, I had no sound. So I was trying to find what happened and I had no pedals. So I had the Twin Reverb and a Telecaster I was petrified. It wasn’t possible to do the gig with it, so I unplugged the King of Tone that had a battery on it for safety reasons, fortunately, and I did half of the gig with the King of Tone and I was plugging some other pedals that I found out that there was a short in the electric power, so it blew off two or three of my AC adapters. So, I never since, I’ve never since that time, I’ve never ever leave my pedals connected to the to the electric power. I always unplugged it and I plug it when I get to the to the show. That’s a side story,but that that’s also a very important one.
Killer Tone and Easy to Dial In
So I used it for a long periods of time and it’s a great amp; very versatile. What I love about the the Twin is if you, if you need more base, you just go to the base knob and raise it up. If you need more treble you go to the treble. If you need more mids you go to the mids. Extremely simple. Nothing to do with Mesa Boogie amps. Their are all interactive and all very finicky, too. You need to really know how they work. So you can go there with the Fender amps. It’s dummy proof. It’s, it’s really easy to make them sound good and they have reverb and tremolo, so it’s, it’s a great amp. I just stopped using it because I needed an amp that would allow me to, to do a show with no pedals. If anything went wrong that’s why I moved on to Mesa Boogie.
But today is about the Twin Reverb, so let’s hear it. So it is a very simple amp. It has two channels; the normal one and the vibrato one, and the vibrato one has reverb and vibrato, the normal one, doesn’t have anything just an amp, but they, as I said, they sound different. So listen to the same setting in the vibrato one, and now in the normal one. The vibrato one is a little brighter than the normal channel. So I first used it only with the normal channel because I had the boss TR 2 for the tremolo and I never used reverb. Now I’m in love with reverb, so I love the vibrato channel and in the studio, that is where I use the Twin Reverb the most. I use it because of the reverb and because of the treble. Whenever I want a spaghetti western guitar, or whenever I want a very beautiful lush reverb, it’s a Twin Reverb. I use it, I even use it to reamp vocals for the for the spring reverb because it’s a tube reverb and that’s a special thing with a spring tube reverb that is on Fender amps and almost on any amp that has a tube reverb. When you engage the reverb, you’re not only engaging reverb, but you are, you are also putting another tube in the circuit, another circuit of tubes because it has an in and an out, too. So there’s more. There’s two more tubes you are putting it into the equation so usually sounds richer and it usually flatters your tone. That’s why a lot of people always use reverbs, always on, and my Twin Reverb is not a normal Twin Reverb because it, because it’s old, it’s from the 90s and it’s very played, so the tubes are the original ones. It has a lot of noise sometimes because of that, but they compress a little bit and then break up a little bit and I usually use it for my clean sound. It’s always a classic with a reverb. You can listen to the reverb. It almost, it’s mixed, it blends really great with your, with your tone. It’s not intrusive. It doesn’t cloud your tone. It helps it and it’s almost, you almost only notice it when you stop playing.
In the Fender amps, in the Fender amps that have reverb and tremolo, the tremolo is after the reverb, so you can hear the tail of the reverb with tremolo which is not a thing that that you usually would think it would be. But this is if you use it for the tremolo spaghetti-western. If you use it the reverb maxed out, it’s a magical effect and it’s guitar and amp, okay? So, I used it a lot of times. It was my clean sound and then I used my King of Tone, usually always on the red side, so this was my bass tone. Without the King of Tone. And this is very important. I set it so we can have the same volume, but with a compression and a little bit of gain. But you hear it without it, it is a lot spikier and this is why the King of Tone is so amazing, because it has a great tone, but it’s extremely dynamic so you can, if you play soft, you have your clean. But you play really loud it dirties up really great. So, it sounds like an amp. Then I use the boss OD3 which is an amazing, great boost pedal that almost no one talks about. But it’s I love this pedal and I used it to boost my, like, my dirty channel. So this was my clean, and this was my dirty. And here, and if I wanted more volume or a boost in volume, I would use the yellow side to boost things up. So this is the normal thing and it really helps cutting through the mix because it has a mid-range thing and it makes it really amazing to play, and that without changing the amp. I never changed the amp and I would never change the amp in those times when I used it as my main amp. In the studio it’s completely different because sometimes you need a strange tone, but we’ll get there in a moment. It works great with the fuzz, and this is the Ultimate Octave from Photon, but it usually the fuzz works better with the King of Tone turned on. A bit, a bit, a little bit of vibe, a bit of reverb, yeah, it works great, and I used it with a little slap.
As you can hear, this is a great, unbelievable, great, good sounding amp and that’s how I used it for a long time until I move on and I was really, really tired of my Mesa Boogie being so compressed and so over-driven. Things change sometimes. I want to do a very. a very thin sound and let’s work with the EQ so you can hear it, how it works. If you take off the the EQ, you almost have no sound. You have this mid-rangey picky thing. Okay, let’s change it. Strangely enough, the mid-range is not high mid-range, it’s a low mid-range. So with a mid-range on, you almost have your tone and this is sometimes great for those spaghetti-western tones. And this is the amp. This is the thing that made all those movies and all those soundtrack movie songs. If you, so this is with a mid-range. If you turn the treble, and this is for those blue sounds. It even have a bright. There’s where the blues is. I hated this tone when I had the amp. I never used the bright. But now I’m really into the vintage thing and I really love it as an effect. I wouldn’t use it all the time, but I was playing classic blues show I would use it for sure and then the bass is really, really bassy. Let me turn the reverb. And this is one of the things I love the most about the Twin Reverb because live, usually this amount of bass is really, really great for filling the stage and the Twin is really 3d sounding because of its open back. You hear it. Usually it doesn’t seem that it comes from the amp, that the sound comes from the amp. It seems that the tone is everywhere. That is more evident with with four 10s, but with this amp it is it is really, really the thing. It fills the stage a lot and the bass treble, the bass knob in between is, I think, it is one of the secret weapons because usually the twin sounds a little shrill, a little trebly. But if you get the bass and the mid right, you’re halfway there. You’re really warm. Usually what I did was start with in all on 10, all EQ on 10, and then back up, back off, what I the think I didn’t need. So like this… Unless I’m going for the Albert King and Albert Collins thing. Unless I’m going for this, I’ll be backing off the treble.
Another great thing about the Twin is that since it’s two channels sound slightly different, you almost have two characters, two amps in one amp and I usually think pedals sound best in the normal channel then in the vibrato channel, but let’s make a test. The King of Tone with the red side. This is great. You can use this to, with an AV box for example. You can use it to have different guitars with different tones. For example, a Les Paul into the brighter Channel and a Tele or a Strat into the normal channel. The other way you can use it you can use it as a 2-channel amp. If you have an a/b box, you plug your guitar into the B and then the A goes here, the B goes here, or the other way around and you can have a louder channel and a quieter channel, a clean and a driven. If you, after the reverb, after the AB, you can put a drive so you can have this driving. There’s a lot of a lot of options to use this amp. But this channel sounds the best to me. It’s here, there. This is the tubes going crazy. And I think it’s super easy mod to do. Yes, they did it on the custom series, but simple, easy mod to do is to put a, to make this channel, to enable this channel to use the reverb and the vibrato. I think it’s just a jumper inside. I haven’t done it because I haven’t needed it. But this is really, really good all-around amp if you use pedals.
Now You Know – Is It Right for You?
Well that’s it. I hope you have liked it. I hope you have enjoyed the show. If you haven’t done it yet, please subscribe to the YouTube channel. Share it with the world and I’ll see you next week.