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Discussion in 'For Sale: Amps, Preamps, and Cabinets' started by kurosawa, Nov 6, 2013.

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  1. KILLER BASS AMP! Early 70s AIMS 4-channel 100-watt all-tube PA head - $400 (Yorktown)

    Ongoing divorce survival sale. All my bass stuff is up for grabs. So it's not like I'm getting rid of the stuff I like least, these items are my favorites.

    This is an AIMS 4-channel all-tube PA amp head that I bought for bass work. It's stupid loud with an unbelievable killer tube sound. When it's set on 5 treble and 2 bass, where you would set an old Fender Bassman for a fairly neutral sound, it puts out that beefy whack that makes us one with the bass drum, that old school super booty quake that makes 'em dance.

    The amp line was made in New Mexico in the early 70s. I was a real gearhead, so it must have flown by fast. I think I blinked and missed out on it entirely. It's a super high quality tube head. It weighs 65 lb (for comparison, the Ampeg V4-B weighed 57 lb--I owned both and I think this AIMS amp sounds better).

    This amp also came in bass and guitar versions, but I bought this because of all the channels. The real Rickenbacker and Alembic stereo sound is one pickup per channel. This gives true scoop for psychedelic pick playing like Jack Casady and Phil Lesh, where you would turn up the bass for the neck pickup and turn down the treble, and vice versa for the bridge pickup.

    Another old school trick, channel cascading, which makes the extremes yet more extreme, takes two channels, each with two input jacks. What you do is plug the instrument into input 1 of the first channel, then plug a short patch cord between input 2 of the first channel and input 1 of the second channel. Naturally, if you are going to do this in stereo, you need 4 channels.

    Now most of the time you will find this amp with reissue Russian tubes, and it sounds good enough. But this amp is powered by a pair of Holy Grail power tubes, 6550A Tung-Sol 3-hole gray plates made in Newark. They look very fresh. NOS price on a pair is $600. I was just blown away when I saw those tubes.

    Only issue is a power switch that's stuck on. I have the replacement here but I've been too busy to turn on the soldering iron and get to it.

    Now OK, you may be asking (and very few people do), suppose something goes wrong? Where will I get parts? You know, the sound is in the tubes and transformers. Well this is 1 of 2 identical AIMS heads I bought at the same time from different sources, and so I'm throwing the other one in just in case. It has the SAME amazing Tung-Sol power tubes rebranded to Realistic and they look new, PLUS it has the fetish-grade RCA preamp tubes.

    Now this spare parts amp sounds just as good as the other, but for some reason that would probably be obvious to an amp tech (but not me), it's not as loud with the knobs in the same positions. Maybe I plugged into the wrong jack or something, I don't know. I'm thinking that it will GET as loud if the knobs are turned up, but I didn't try that.

    $400 firm for both with the magic tubes. Come out some evening with your bass to hear for yourself if it's the magic you've been looking for.

    TB NOTE: Look, this is 130 lb. of amps before packing, so I really recommend it only for those in driving distance or who can have it driven to them. I had awful luck receiving a tube head in the past. The transformer has so much inertia, it can rip any amp cabinet apart by dropping, which happens too frequently. Besides, returns would be a nightmare, so it's best for you to play it before paying.

    (PS, if you're old like me and your back needs something lighter, I'm also selling a Pignose B100VH all-tube bass amp head here, only 24 lb, see the ad.)

    Attached Files:

  2. Here are the pics of the extra amp (you get two amps). Either take this to a tube tech and have him fix the volume difference (that's what I was planning on) or just leave this alone to scavenge for spare tubes, transformers, etc.

    Attached Files:

  3. sanfordandsonny


    Nov 15, 2006
    El Presidente of Sanford and Sonny Audio Weapons (Bluebeard Fuzz)
    Whoa! Amazing!!!!!
  4. I didn't have a chance to play them so they've been sitting here. When I plugged up I was blown away. Usually we remember things as being better than they were, but this is my favorite tube sound, ahead of my D-180, V4-B, Buster, Bassman, Showman, B25, Music Man 150. Bassman 100, and B100VH. I read somewhere that these heads were only as good as the V4-B, and I was starting to doubt my memories and my ears, but then I noticed the guy said he had Svetlanas in his, so that probably explains things. None of the posts I've seen mention the Newark tubes, so I'm amazed that both these have them.
  5. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    I want to be Tesla (tinkerer at Dayton Amp Co)
    Wow! I really wish I was closer.
  6. lofreq64

    lofreq64 Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2004
    Sussex County NJ
    PM sent
  7. Fuzzonaut


    Aug 27, 2013
    What a great deal! Good luck.
  8. AIMS amp heads are great bargains, well worth searching out. They are more likely to have the killer Tungsrams if they are long-unused barn finds as these were (yes, I found them on eBay, in AZ and IN).
  9. so awesome! let me know if you have a change of heart on shipping! I have a couple of k-140s that I think would love these amps!
  10. These have been

    *** SOLD ***

    but keep looking, these are worth it!

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