Midnight Special 300B Head
Class A single-ended, 10 Watts
Self-biasing output stage
300B mesh plate
82 Mercury Vapor Tube Rectifier
Octal base preamp tubes 6SL7,6SN7
LAS Line Out ™ with Level Control
and XLR and TRS outputs
Series FX loop
Reverb On/Off jack
Transformless tube reverb
Sprague Vitamin Q paper/oil tone capacitors
Carbon composition resistors
Sprague ATOM TVA filters
Point to point terminal cloth wiring
NOS tube sockets
Powder coated Aluminum chassis 12 ga.
Handmade in USA
Available as Head cabinet, Chassis only or 1x12 combo
I had a couple hours to really run the amp this morning. The cleans are beautiful and it breaks up a bit earlier than I expected. I got some nice dynamics going according to how hard I was playing. It definitely will let you know how good your pickups are and the output. It behaves differently than the regular MS for sure, or other amps I own.
My low output pickups on my strat sound great but the volume was on the low side. When I ran it with P90s I felt like it really came to life. I felt like I could get a lot more dynamics going on and volume. I also thought the distorted tones sounded better at higher volumes but I still need more time to figure it out. Bypassing the EQ also gives a huge boost in volume that surprised me.
I found it also an unforgiving amp with playing style. Any little mistake in your technique comes right through. I really had to focus on playing almost perfectly to get the sound just right. Once I did I was richly rewarded with a balanced tone and ALL the strings coming through. There wasn't a dead spot to be found. This amp is definitely for the accomplished player. A very pro-level piece of gear. I think right now the amp is above me and I am going to have to do some serious practice to get better and bring my playing level up to the level of the amp!
The reverb sounds great, as usual. The tubes look awesome hanging in there. I just love the look of the massive 300b. Also, thanks for the awesome preamp tubes! I had a close look at all that NOS glass you installed. Thanks!!! There are also some nice touches on the cab. The way those metal inserts for the back panel work are a stroke of genius. This should become an industry standard. It was amazingly easy to take out and reinstall that back panel. What a thoughtful idea.
I tried out that Gold Lion 300B in the MS today. It was an interesting experiment.
I felt like there was a pronounced mid range punch with the Gold Lion tube and I could also get a more vocal quality with the lower bass notes. I found the D,G,B strings really came through quite strongly and the lower E and A had a nice clear, vocal quality bass punch. It was quite nice. I found myself having to dial out less bass with that tube. It was a beautiful tone. Almost had a Hendrix-like quality with his clean work.
You really have to be in tune and more importantly, play in tune. Technique seems to be a huge factor with the amp. I am still learning how to play all my notes in tune while playing a song and it is proving to be very important. If I miss a note, it really comes through.
The mesh plate didn't have quite the mid range punch and seemed to be more balanced across the tonal spectrum. I also think I need to get used to that Tone Tubby Speaker. I am used to playing a Celestion G12 H30 or the Blue in the MS and they have a different quality.
That's my take. I liked them both but I think you made the right choice for balance with the mesh plate tube. I think if I ever have a gig in a big mix, with two guitarists I may swap it out for the other tube for some punch to cut through.
Here are a couple sound samples with a Tone Tubby Purple Haze and smaller 17 oz Alnico magnet.
The guitar is the Suspense
I upgraded a large diaphragm condenser tube mic with a Micro Tube, Neumann U47 replacement capsule and Jensen transformer plugged into the Simplex Mic Pre