Mesa Boogie Single Rectifier Solo Head
Mesa Boogie Single Rectifier Solo Head

Single Rectifier Solo Head, Tube Guitar Amp Head from Mesa Boogie in the Single Rectifier series.

King Loudness 08/09/2011

Mesa Boogie Single Rectifier Solo Head : King Loudness's user review

« Metal Machine, simplified »

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The Mesa Boogie Single Rectifier is an amp that continues on the lineage of the famed and well known Rectifier line. It's a slightly stripped down version of the Dual Rectifier, putting out 50 watts of power and only having one rectifier tube, which does provide a slightly different tonal edge as well as a slightly different feel that to me suits the lower wattage without compromising the awesome tone that the Rectifiers are known for.

Single Rectifier 50™
"Series 2" FEATURES

Handbuilt in Petaluma, California
50 Watts, Class A/B Power / 2x6L6, 5x12AX7
Bias Select Switch (6L6/EL34)
Fixed Bias for Consistent, Maintenance Free Performance
2 Channels, 5 Modes (Channel 1=Clean or Pushed, Channel 2=Raw, Vintage High Gain or Modern High Gain)
Independent Gain, Treble, Mid, Bass, Presence and Master Controls per Channel
Output Level Control (over all channels)
Footswitchable Solo Level Control - Patent 6,724,897
Parallel FX Loop w/Mix Control
Slave Out
2 Button Footswitch (Channel & Solo)
Slip Cover


The Single Rectifier is two channels (paying homage to the famed 2ch Dual Rectos of the nineties) and features the same clean/pushed clean modes on channel one and the raw/vintage/modern modes on channel two that the Dual and Triple Rectifier have. Like all Rectos (and true with most Mesa amps in general) it can be difficult to grasp how the controls react to one another. The preamp structure of these amps has a lot of stray and "fizzy" top end that has to be tamed at higher volumes. The Single Rectifier does away with the third channel that many of the Dual/Triple versions have, so I find that channel two is more balanced in going from low gain to high gain in mode selection, as opposed to having a bunch of redundant modes (IE: Ch2 Modern and Ch3 Vintage). It is all a matter of opinion though.


I tend to like Mesa amps with Gibson, PRS, or other humbucker loaded guitars because it allows for the amp to still have the saturation and thick tone that I desire for the music I'm playing primarily. I find that using an amp like this with single coils just sounds thin and somewhat buzzy. Also, the scooped midrange nature of these amps doesn't really work all that well with single coils I find.

The clean channel is basically the same as the Dual/Triple Recto. I find that having it in 50w power doesn't quite give me the headroom that I'd like, so I have to say I prefer the higher wattage versions for cleans. The dirty channel is an interesting mix of Ch2 and Ch3 on the 3 channel Rectos which I like, and having the 50w power maximum really allows the amp to sound a bit spongier and more classic, plus it allows me to turn it up a bit more and get those killer even order harmonics that tube amps deliver when cranked to oblivion.


All in all I feel that the Mesa Single Rectifier is a great amp that is an excellent choice for someone who loves the tone and layout of the Mesa Rectifier amps but doesn't need every extra feature of the Duals and Triples. It is about $1450 new so there is about a $500 price difference in this amp compared to other models. Used they can be had for about $700-$800 which is a steal for such a good and high quality amp. Mesa stuff is usually fairly reliable so I wouldn't have any qualms with it. Definitely worth checking out.