Vox Cambridge 30R
Vox Cambridge 30R

Cambridge 30R, Hybrid Combo Guitar Amp from Vox in the Cambridge series.

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MGR/Michael Behuniak (Seattle WA) 03/19/2002

Vox Cambridge 30R : MGR/Michael Behuniak (Seattle WA)'s user review

« VOX Cambridge 30 Reverb »

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I bought this VOX Cambridge 30 Reverb combo amp at Guitar Center (Seattle) at a close-out sale price of $179. I was looking for a good quality practice amp for under $200 and this amp fits the bill perfectly. I tried out several other amps in this price range: Crate GFX-15 (very good), Fender Champion 30, and the smaller 15 watt VOX Pathfinder. In terms of great vintage tone and over-all sound, the Cambridge 30 was a no-brainer. Also, a great steal at $179...normally sells for $299.

I play a Fender 62 Custom Telecaster Reissue, and this amp is perfect for it's classic vintage tone, especially if you like playing Beatles, Stones, Kinks, etc. Also very good for more modern stuff like R.E.M, U2, and Nirvana (clean stuff, ie, Come As You Are).

The Reverb on this amp is absolutely killer. The clean channel is very bright and clear with a bell-like chime with no background noise or hiss. Perfect for jangly Beatles or R.E.M. stuff.

Channel 2 has a gain and mid-range boost. You can dial in all sorts of bluesy-tones by adjusting the volume and gain controls accordingly. I particuarly like the overdrive boost...you can get great vintage tube sounds (like 'The Who Live At Leeds' sound). Back off the boost a bit and you can recreate that classic Stones 'Brown Sugar' type of distortion.

This amp is NOT suitable for METAL Styles...you'll need a quality distortion box if that's what youre looking.

Oh yeah, this amp comes with built-in Tremolo also. Nice feature, especially if you like CCR...turn up the tremolo and you can sound just like 'Born On The Bayou'.

Overall I adore this amp, and the great tones I can get out of it...it also has that classic VOX appearance also, complete with the diamond-quilt grill cloth, and funky chicken-head controls.

The nothing I really don't like about this amp. If I had to nit-pick, I wish the 12AX7 pre-amp tube was more accessible...you have to remove the entire chassis to access it. No big problem, as I wasn't planning on replacing it soon anyway, but probably will one day just to see how it affects the overall sound.

The VOX Cambridge 30 Reverb appears to be built very solid. Be nice if it had corner protectors, that's about all I can think to improve the cabinet (And making the pre-amp tube more accessible).

Anyway, this amp is perfect for practice and jam sessions, recording, and small venue performances. If you play electric guitar and you're in the market for an inexpensive 30 watt amp with a great vintage 60's Brit-Rock tone, the VOX CAMBRIDGE 30 Reverb is a great choice.

(and TRY to find ANY combo amp with a GENUINE 10" CELESTION speaker, built-in reverb AND tremolo, a 12ax7 pre-amp tube, clean and overdrive channels, mid-range boost, and 30 watts power rating for under $200)lr

Michael Behuniak, Mar 2002
Seattle WA

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com