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NAD: Vox AC10C1

johnh

Member
Messages
4,668
Hi everyone,

I am a big fan of Fender Pro Jnrs, and tend to use them for most of my small gigs and rehearsals as well as playing in church, which is a very low volume environment. When gigging, I use the Pro Jnr through my Engl 2x10 cab, which sounds fantastic. If I need more volu,e I use my AC30HW.

However, in church, I have just been using one of my Pro Jnrs on its own. Recently, I've become a little dissatisfied by the lack of bass in the sound. I added a 1x12 extension cab, which added loads of bass, but I don't like lugging two boxes.

Therefore I recently bought a used AC10C1. Initially I was distinctly underwhelmed. The Vox sounded decent at higher volumes, or with humbuckers but was far too bright for me with my single coil guitars. Before giving up, I swapped the EMI Ramrod from one of my Pro Jnrs into the Vox and - bam! Now the Vox sounds fantastic.

I totally realise the Vox is not perfect, but:

It's incredibly lightweight
Has lots of bass (unlike the Pro Jnr)
Doesn't sound at all boxy (unlike the Blues Jnr).
Has superb cleans tones
Has a really surprising range of overdriven tones. I use pedals for all my gain needs, so I don't need built in overdrive, but it's nice to have the option.

I still love my Pro Jnrs, but the Vox is a lovely additional flavour. The clean tones seem to be all Vox to my ears. Nice and hollow and rich and chimey. I'm the kind of player who leaves my main OD pedal on 100% of the time and get my clean tones by rolling back my guitars volume knob. However, the Vox cleans are so good that I switched my pedals off for the first time in living memory!

There is a good chance that the internal speaker would have sounded much better when broken in, but the Ramrod has the added benefit of adding some more mids to the sound, which suited my needs.

If I was gigging in pubs regularly, then I think the AC15 would probably be a better choice, but for my needs (low volume gig and busted shoulder which requires low weight) the AC10 has really impressed me.

 

lemonman

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,085
Nice review, I've been considering one for the same apps and reasons. Does it take a 8 or 16 ohm speaker? I have a couple nice 8 ohmers around.
 

johnh

Member
Messages
4,668
I actually put an 8 ohm speaker in it, but the extension speaker specially recommends a 16 ohm speaker. So I've probably done bad. However, I think I will use it this way for now. If it blows an OP transformer, I will just upgrade that. The last time I ruined an OP Tx on my Pro Jnr, the amp sounded much better with an upgraded transformer, . I don't want to break it, but I figure if it does, it's not the biggest deal in the world.
 

guitargeezer

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,149
I've got an AC10, and really like it, John. I don't gig, but I'm alternating between the stock, internal speaker and the amp running through a Celestion Creamback in a Morgan 112 cab. Sounds really good, but when coupled with my Fryette Power Station with the volume up on the Vox, it's really something special.

What tubes are you using?
 

johnh

Member
Messages
4,668
I haven't touched the tubes yet, so I'm assuming they're stock. I hear the stock speaker is pretty good, so maybe mine just hadn't broken in properly.
 

guitargeezer

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,149
The AC10 is only my second Vox...I had a Cambridge Reverb in 1966 or thereabouts...but I really like the tone. I probably would have picked up an AC15 if they weren't so heavy (I don't have a bad shoulder to blame...just old age, in my case).

On a separate note, glad to see you've still got a Pro Junior. I remember lots of threads about them over at the FDP.
 

petty1818

Member
Messages
3,716
The AC10 is such a great little amp. Honestly, even with the high praise from reviewers, I wasn't expecting much. I literally play it all the time now and it's the only Vox amp that I have owned where I haven't even wanted to switch out the cheap tubes. I also find it smoother/warmer than most Vox amps which is great. This thing does stuff that I have wanted much more expensive amps to do. I recently played a fun show at my school with a few other teachers for Christmas where we did an AC/DC tune for the students. I just brought my AC10, cranked the gain and turned the master down and it was instant Angus. Not only that but the amp was dead quiet for how high gain it was.

My only complaint is that it does not take overdrive pedals well, if you are getting some crunch already from the amp. If it's clean, it works well but that bit of crunch impacts the OD pedals being used. I tried to do a show where I had the AC10 and my Jetter jet drive and they sounded terrible together, just muddy. However, that was kind of dumb of me to think that the AC10 could handle a show like that with a loud drummer.
 

MHG

Member
Messages
5,893
Yeah, most common overdrive pedals won't work well with Vox style amps. You pretty need to go with a Treble booster, Fuzz, or Fuzz/overdrive hybrid.
 
Messages
7
I had an AC4C1-12... I loved everything about it EXCEPT the bass response was awful. I bought an AC10C1 and received it today.... WOW WOW WOW..... SO much better. Like night and day. Just sold my AC4C1-12 for more than I paid for it and now I am completely happy. I play a Gretsch Electromatic 5420t...Sounds great thru my Strymon Flint and Boss Blues Driver.... I play professionally and mainly play acoustic... I don't need any more power for my electric than the 10 watts since I mic the amp with an Ear Trumpet Labs Ediwna.... I'm a satisfied customer... Great job Vox!
 

wordsonyou

Member
Messages
1,124
The Vox AC10 in my opinion is the best bang for buck Vox product in the Korg era including Korg UK. And any of its limitations can be cured by simply plugging into a 2-12 open back cab loaded with Alnico blues. I have just come out of an afternoon with the AC10C1, AC15C1, AC30CCH and a AC30 Vintage Head (1992). The 10 may have been at various times my favorite of them. Also, takes pedals quite well in the 2-12 cab (though not as well in the 1-10 config). We also had a Mesa TA30 in the room - it has a lot in common with the C10 at its low watt setting in the AC channel. In fact the only reason I would keep a 15C1 over the 10 is because of the trem. I think I prefer the pure tone of the 10 over the 15.
 




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