Artifact V Combo Amplifier

Awhile back, I transferred some vinyl to digital for my buddy Tony. His dad played drums in a band called The Telstars all over the Caribbean in the mid sixties, and they cut a record backing up a singer named Johnny Braff. Here's a great track from that record for you to check out.

Mr. Teixeira, who is a master woodworker and builds all of Tony's custom cabinetry, gave me a beautiful 1x10" cabinet as a thank-you. The 5F1 Champ chassis came from our friend Don. Going through my parts, I found a power transformer from an Ampex 970 (a big reel-to-reel unit that had a stereo power amp built in): it fit the mounting holes perfectly, and is rated for twice the current of this circuit. The output transformer is from a 1950s Grundig console: generously sized, and beautifully made with paper interleavings and fine laminations. The circuit overall is very Champ-inspired with a 12AX7 in the preamp and 6V6 power tube for about 5 Watts. I had to use a 6 volt rectifier (the 970 used an EZ81), so I chose the Bendix 5852, a ruggedized military 6X5 type. Beefed-up power supply filtering, and my favourite NOS parts: Sprague Vitamin Q paper-in-oil hermetically sealed signal capacitors, Allen-Bradley carbon-comp resistors (carbon film on the plates), Dale wirewound cathode resistor, 1 meg pot with DPDT switch for safety, silver-plated teflon-jacket wire, even a NOS Black Gate electrolytic in the preamp. A new-in-box Jensen P10S speaker from 1957 was a perfect match for the turns ratio of the OT.

Bigger and cleaner sounding than a Champ, it takes pedals extremely well as a practice amp. I think it would work nicely as a jazz amp with a hollowbody in small venues, too. I even used it once as a powered monitor for live sound reinforcement.

Some more pictures...

The Artifact V has been SOLD...

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