Official product page
The Portablues 110 H is a higher-gain version of the Portablues 110. The "H" model has only two controls, volume and tone. Otherwise, the 110 H has the same features as the Portablues 110.
smiczamps at aol.com
Ad in the Feb 1999 issue (Vol 13 #5) of Vintage Guitar as of 1/15/99 there is an ad on page 103. Korina guitar on the cover.
Amp database - not
found, but apparently there was a review posted to the forum.
I heard that the Portablues will be available with a 1-watt adapter option. Is this correct? Will that work with any standard 12AX7 tube? Please consider designing several more ultra-low-power tube amps. There is a huge unmet demand for these for guitarists at home, who want to get authentic cranked-tube-amp tone at private monitoring levels. At such quiet levels, there will also be some interest from keyboardists and harmonica players, as the amp becomes more like a headphone-level processor more than an amplifier. The Smokey 1/2 watt solid state amp provides evidence that even 1/2 watt may be too loud for some apartments.
Re: Huge demand for 1-watt tube amps - Portablues option?
>Thanks for the input. People tend to be very surprised when they first hear
>just how loud a really good 5-watt amp can be.
>Yes, we are planning to offer a 6V6 to preamp tube adapter sometime in the
>near future. The adapter will work with any standard 12AX7, 12AU7, OR 12AY7
>tubes. At this time we are concentrating on keeping up with current
>amplifier orders, so I can't be very clear on when we can expect to go into
>production with the adapters.
>We are also considering offering an ultra low wattage amp as well, but I
>couldn't even guess when they might be available. It's our feeling that the
>versatility of a 5-watt amp that can easily be converted to a 1-watt amp with
>a single tube adapter will meet the needs of many players.
[He includes a description of an interesting ultra-low wattage amp design which I will not post publically. Listen up, amp designers who care about the market for guitarists at home!]
>Thanks, Bob Stern. info at smicz-amplification.com
From: David Owens
Sent: Tuesday, January 04, 2000 2:13 PM
Subject: Re: Keep up good work!
>Bob Smicz released his 1-watt adapter, using a 6AK6. The adapter sounds good, surprisingly so. It brings the amp to a manageable level, though still not "quiet" for a saturated tone. (I still think a 1/2 watt would be better). Most important though, you don't give up much in the way of tone by using the adapter. Overall, I am happy with the amp, and would recommend it to someone looking for a moderate level good-sounding amp. It has mellowed a bit over the months, and lost some of the edgy brightness it had out of the box. It is quite articulate, and the tone controls have enough variability to let you fiddle to get the "right" sound. I had trouble with the original battery, but Bob replaced it and did a minor reverb mod at my convenience. He is a good guy, and I hope he makes it. Running off the battery is very quiet, and a big plus for this amp. The only improvement I think Bob should make would be to have a "fully charged" indicator for the battery. Not a big deal, however. I still smile every time I use it. On a separate note, you might want to consider a section about effects that work well with quiet amps. I have been using Dave Barber's Burn Unit for about six months with the Portablues, and can get some great sounds at relatively low levels. Just a thought... Thanks for keeping your site going, I still check it periodically.
1-watt tube adapter - "The first in a series of 1-watt tube adapters is now available. The TAD-1 uses a 6AK6 minature 7 pin pentode tube to generate wonderful tone at a reduced volume over a 6V6, 6L6, or EL34 output tube. The TAD-1 is designed to be used in any single output tube, class A, cathode biased, amplifier with plate voltage below 425 volts such as a CHAMP, PRINCETON, HARVARD, BRONCO, or CLARK lil'bit. The TAD-1 can also be used in some amplifiers that use a pair of 6V6, 6L6, or EL34 output tubes which are class A, cathode biased, and operate on plate voltages below 425 volts such as a DELUXE. When using the TAD-1 in the PORTABLuEs, operating time on battery is increased 30-50%. The volume is decreased but the tone stays the same. You will be amazed at how loud 1 watt RMS is into a efficient speaker. WARNING: The TAD-1 is not designed to be used in amplifiers with a plate voltage over 425vdc or amplifiers running in class A/B. The TAD-1 is designed for use in class A, cathode biased amplifiers only. If there is a bias control on your amp do not use the TAD-1, you will need the TAD-2 when it becomes available. Presently under development is the TAD-2 adapter. The TAD-2 is for use in class A/B, push pull amplifiers which use 6L6, 6V6, 6550, or EL34 output tubes. Stay tuned for the release of this great product."
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