Matchless Lightning Tone info needed

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by skeeterbuck, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. skeeterbuck

    skeeterbuck Member

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    I am looking into buying a Matchless Lightning used.

    I was told that the amp is basically a clone of the Vox AC30 top boost channel.

    Looking to hear from owners of the Lightning if they think that this is accurate. I already did a search and didn't find anything directly addressing this question.

    Thanks for the help.
     
  2. Nolatone Ampworks

    Nolatone Ampworks Silver Supporting Member

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    It is in that the preamp is one stage into a cathode follower into a very similar bass/treble tone stack. Note that the Lighning uses both triodes of the first tube in parallel, I don't believe the AC30 does that.

    Tonally, I don't know how accurate that is. There's not cut control on a Lightning so you don't have that aspect.

    I would describe the tone vox meets Deluxe Reverb.

    It's a great amp. My Nolatone Model One had borrowed some of Lightning circuit, but I was never happy with the way the amp sounded when pushed hard, so I redid the entire tone stack, so it's no longer "related".

    Hope that helps.

    Paul
     
  3. catherinef

    catherinef Member

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    Go on youtube.com and do a search on Audley Freed. You'll find six clips from the Gibson exhibition from last year. Audley's playing a Lightning head. Plays it fairly clean then with a treble booster so you can get an idea how it sounds. I've had a Lightning for years and love it. Takes pedals very well.
     
  4. teleamp

    teleamp Senior Member

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    If you compare the Vox and Matchless schematics, you will see that they are VERY similar. Mark did a bullet proof layout though.

    If you research enough Vox schematics, you will see strong similarities.
     
  5. skeeterbuck

    skeeterbuck Member

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    Thanks everyone for the info and clips.

    Anyone else?

    There's has to be more gearheads here that have heard the Lighting.
     
  6. doublescale1

    doublescale1 FSR Tele Silver Supporting Member

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    The Lightning is the 15 watt (2 EL84's vs. 4 EL84's in the DC/HC amp) version first channel of the DC30 - close to the Top Boost layout. All tone descriptors for that channel on the DC30 apply to the Lightning, with allowances for the different sized cab & spkrs. The Matchless Nighthawk is the 15 watt version of the right channel of the DC30 - it will feature the EF86 pre-amp tube and the selector switch tone control off the big DC/HC30 model - same cab & spkr disclaimer here too.
     

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