Wednesday, January 16, 2019

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White Model 80 Tube Amplifier, made by Fender (1956)

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White Model 80 Tube Amplifier, made by Fender (1956)

White Model 80 Model Tube Amplifier, made by Fender (1956), made in Fullerton, California, serial # 9025, grey speckled fabric covering finish.

This great-sounding and rather rare little White-brand amp is one of the most obscure Fender products of the 1950's, intended as a secondary product line to sell to teaching studios. This was still a big market for Fender products at the time, especially the student grade steel guitars and amps. So as not to undercut franchised Fender dealers in the same town, a special studio-only line (consisting of one steel guitar and amp model) was offered wholesale to studios only. The story goes that Fender plant manager Forrest White was not even aware that Leo had named this line for him until the nameplates started appearing at the factory!

The White Model 80 amp is similar to the period Princeton, with a tone and volume control and 12AX7/6V6/5Y3 circuit. It carries a single 8" speaker and has enough differences in layout to give it a unique tonal character of its own. This particular amp was wired up in March, 1956 by Lupe Lopez, and her masking-tape name tag is still present on the chassis pan. It carries a very low serial number and remains in very fine condition overall, and is a great sounding amp that starts out crisp and quickly slides into growly overdrive. The White "Higher Fidelity" Model 80 is a mostly forgotten part of the Fender story-amaze your friends with one of the coolest and most offbeat amps of the era that most players have never seen or heard before!
 
Height is 13 1/2 in. (34.3 cm.), 17 in. (43.2 cm.) width, and 7 1/4 in. (18.4 cm.) deep.

A very clean amp overall, and nicely original except for a replacement Weber Series speaker dated 2014. There is a 3-prong cord added; other than that, the circuit remains original and unaltered as Lupe made it. The exterior is quite clean as well with some light wear and toning to the covering and corrosion to the faceplate. The leather handle has even survived intact, as have the knobs and White nameplate. A great-looking and wonderful-sounding example of this Fender rarity, in excellent playing condition and quite restorable to all-original museum state if desired. Excellent + Condition.

Item # 8492
 
This item has been sold.


 
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