Vox AC4HW1 4W Handwired Tube Combo Amp

94
GEARANK

94 out of 100. Incorporating 90+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$900
Vox AC4HW1 4W Handwired Tube Combo Amp

Gearank High Notes

On October 18 2021 we announced the results of our annual analysis of guitar amp brands - Vox ranked #5.

Specifications

  • Power Rating: 4-Watts
  • Preamp Tube(s): 2x 12AX7
  • Poweramp Tube(s): 1 x EL84
  • Speaker: 12” Celestion Gm12 Greenback
  • Cabinet: Closed
  • Controls: Volume, Treble, Bass, Hot/Cool Switch, Master Volume
  • Input(s): High, Low
  • Output(s): Speaker Out
  • Weight: 29.74 lbs

Overview

The Vox AC4HW1 is a low-wattage, hand-wired tube amp.

Amps that are hand-wired feature connections that are all wired in a chain with one another, as opposed to being wired to a circuit board.

Because early amps were hand-wired, tonal purists feel that hand-wired connections give a more organic sound.

This is in part due to the component legs and wire being made of solid cores that have less resistance and therefore preserve more harmonic content in the circuit.

The Vox AC4HW1 ships with a 12” Celestion GM12 Greenback speaker which is uncommon, but very welcome, for amplifiers in this power range.

The portability and tone make it a great amp for coffee shop gigs where the music doesn't have to be loud.

With boutique construction paired with a great sounding speaker, the AC4HW1 is a luxurious studio or bedroom amplifier that supplies you with great British tube amp tone at manageable levels.

As with amplifiers at this wattage, live use may be limited unless miked up properly and fed to a monitor mix but what it lacks in stage volume, it makes up with juicy saturated tones.

Hands On Reports

Website Source *Rating Value
Music Radar Neville Marten 90/100
Audiofanzine Mark Twang 100/100
*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm's adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

Gearank Recommendation

The AC4HW1 appeared on our recommended list for Low Watt Combo Tube Amps when we first published it in December 2017 and it remained there until February 2022.

Although this was previously on our recommended list there are now more highly rated options available which you can see in our guides to The Best Small / Low Watt Tube Amps and The Best Tube Amps for Guitar.

Demo

About the Author

Raphael PulgarRaphael Pulgar

I've been an audio engineer for 20 years specializing in rock and metal recordings, and also I play guitar and produce original music for my band and other content creators.