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Ampeg's Jet amps were wolves in sheep's clothing and their compact size, more typical of a practice amp, belies their true sonic potential. Unlike other amp makers, Ampeg never used a speaker less than 12 inches in diameter for any of its amps, including the entry level Jet. In fact, these amps pump out about 15 watts through a very efficient Jensen or CTS speaker making them excellent for practice or recording. The Jet circuit was altered at least four times with some of the changes being major. The result is that each circuit sounds a bit different. The amp shown is an early example of the Jet which has a "wide-panel" cabinet covered in navy "random flair" vinyl. It also has the earliest circuit which uses a pair of 6V6GT power tubes. The Jet, Rocket and Mercury were voiced more like Fenders than the typical high headroom Ampeg amps. The fact that they readily overdrive has made them popular with rock and blues guitarists.

AMPEG JET J-12 (July 1959)

Power Amp: Tube; 2 x 6V6GT, 12 watts RMS @ 8 ohms

Preamp: Tube; 2 x 6SL7

Rectifier: Tube; 1 x 5Y3GT

Speakers: 1 x 12" Jensen P12S

Channels: 1; 2 inputs

Effects: Tremolo

Controls: Tone, volume, tremolo speed

Dimensions: 14 H x 19 W x 10 D inches

Weight: 21 lb.

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