The mid-60s Fender Twin Reverb - "possibly the quintessential combo amp". Clean, loud, classic and legendary. So much so that Fender started reissuing the 1965 model as early as 1991, with this one marking the 40th anniversary in 2005. Pure genius.
Thanks to John Teagle and John Sprung in Fender Amps: The First Fifty Years for that "quintessential combo amp" comment. A hardback copy of the book is going for over £1000 on Amazon . . . But really, so much has been written about this fabled amp, you don't have to pay or search hard, and we're not going to add a jot of new information that you can't find anywhere else. Try Fender's own story as a great place to start: Pristine Cleans. Aggressive Overdrive. Exactly as it is, from 1952 to today.
The 65 Twin Reverb really has made every effort to reproduce the design and sound of those original mid-60s models. Yes, printed circuit boards replace the original hand-wiring. But this still whacks you with the massive 10-valve, 2 x 12" 85W punch that everyone loves about the original. And those speakers are duplicates of the equally loved Jensen "Specially Designed For Fender" speakers. Vibrato may not be as vogue as it once was, but if you're going to use it, you don't get any better than this. All with that fabulous Fender shimmering reverb. I think they may be right - it really is the quintessential combo amp.
So, no surprises, there's a lot of love for this amp: Dave Gilmour, Johnny Marr, Alex Turner, Jack White, Thom Yorke, Johnny Greenwood, Lenny Kravitz & Brian Molko, to name just a few. How about you?
And a perfect blonde-on-blonde combination with our 1962 Fender Duo-Sonic.
See & Hear It In Action
Rolly's Guitars, A Les Paul, And A 65 Twin Reverb:: We love Rolly - check him out! And in the meantime, enjoy the clean tones of this perfect combination, and the pedal overdrive that he kicks in mid-way through.
65 Twin Reverb 40th Anniversary
2 x 12" Special Design Eminence, built to 1965 Jensen specs
Independent Bright Switch, & Volume, Treble, Middle, Bass Controls in each channel
Vibrato & Reverb
2 x Tilt-back legs
Additional Speaker Output
Fender 2-Button VIB-REV Footswitch
Fender black vinyl cover
Some discussion threads suggest that only 400 of these 40th anniversary editions were made. I haven't found anything to validate that, but it's fair to say these are still pretty unique in their own right.
For a start, that blonde tolex/wheat grille combination. That was a feature of the 1962/3 Fender Twin, replaced in 1963 by the Fender Twin Reverb, with its now familiar black tolex and silver grille. Which is the design used on the reissue from first launch in 1991 to today. But why not? If you're going to do something special to mark 40 years, this blonde/wheat look is the definition of eye-candy.
Elsewhere it's all in the detail. The logo scripts, the polished footswitch, and, oh, that "jewel" power light. I remember that feature with misty-eyed wonderment. My first proper amp was a 1960s Fender Bandmaster - a piggy-backed amp and cabinet, staggeringly large, utterly impractical, perfectly voiced. That jewel light, and that familiar hot tube smell that only Fender can create, it takes me back to a different, and differently happy place.
And, of course, that sound, ringing true across the decades. Surprisingly noiseless for such a highly-geared valve amp, beautiful clear tones, and so much power under the covers, this is a proper professional gigging amp. Yes, you can keep it to neighbour-friendly levels, but it's got to be better to get out there, loud and proud and a legend in your own right, surely?
Sources & Links
Pristine Cleans. Aggressive Overdrive. The Fender Twin Story: The full story from those that rightfully own the story - from 1952 to today..
Today's Fender 65 Twin Reverb: Well, I say "today's", but much as it ever has been since the first reissue in 1991. If it ain't broke . . .