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Philosophy | Red Iron Amps

My operating philosophy…

Build solid and with simplicity. I like small-wattage amps played on “12”. The less knobs, the better. Volume, tone and master volume. I tend to spend more time designing the power supply than any other aspect.

After working at Kendrick Amplifiers, I found that most problems were the result of inadequate build-quality at the foundation. A 50 watt amplifier needs much more than a 50 watt power supply. I’ve found that parts quality has gone up in some areas (like capacitors and wire), while in others it has gone down or wayward (resistors/transformers). I employ tube Hi-Fi techniques where they will do best. Such as: teflon cathode-bypass caps, low ESR power supply caps, metal polypropylene (and sometimes paper/oil) bypass caps. I like to keep signal wires as short as possible. That’s why I don’t particularly like tag/fiber boards, although they look good. But looking good and sounding good are 2 different things. I use true point-to-point wiring, using the tube sockets as tie points. Ultimately, it’s better sound wise for the components to cross each other at perpendiculars, rather than side by side.

No Combo’s?!

Rather than have you pass on buying one of my amps because it doesn’t come with your favorite speaker, I’ve chosen to not make combos. That way, it leaves you to try your favorite. Be it 1-12″, 2-10″, etc. I do have some 1-12″ enclosures (Avatar) that I have loaded with some vintage 10’s/12’s I’ve been hoarding. One speaker I recently picked up has an elliptical cone (can you say bell-like tones) with Alnico magnet. It would be perfect for something like a 5-10 watt amp.