#1
Last weekend I ordered a Cornford Carrera, which arrived on Friday. As a Cornford owner already I was expecting alot, but I can say that this amp meets and surpasses every expectation I had.

The amp is a 5-8W combo with switcheable valve bases in the power section, giving you the choice of a true single ended class A tone with an 8 pin or 9 pin valve, an EL84 and a 6L6 come stock. Other features include reverb and an effects loop, both valve driven. The amp is entirely point-to-point and handwired, with a single Celestion V30 in a very resonant pine (and quite large, for a low wattage amp) cabinet.

After I'd taken the amp out of the packaging and made sure the internal speaker was connected, I plugged in in, switched on the mains power and plugged in my Strat through a new George L's cable. So, I take a brief look at the control panel, set each eq knob and the gain to noon, roll the master right up and add just a touch of reverb. I switch over from standby and strum.

The tone wasn't what I was expecting. I was expecting a chimey, Vox like clean. The tone I was hearing seem more "mid atlantic," with some definite Fender characteristics, very bell like. One look at the control panel answers my questions, I'm playing with the 6L6 8 pin base engaged. I roll up the volume on the guitar and start getting some breakup, and well, I can't say I've ever heard anything quite like it. American overdrive in concept, with with some definite British character in practice, no doubt because of the V30, very impressive. So, I roll back on the guitar, switch over to standby again and switch the valve base to the 9 pin EL84. Waiting just a moment, I switch over from standby again.

Now this was what I was expecting, that beautiful British clean. In my opinion, Vox has nothing on this, and I've had a handwired anniversary AC30 on a "take home and try" basis before. So, I roll up the volume on the guitar again, I must have had a smile a mile wide. Now that was heavenly tone, that unmistakeable Cornford breakup.

After some time playing with the reverb knob, and finding that it was tuned perfectly (very gradual increase from light ambience to Peter Green style weeping), I rolled the gain knob right up. The amp now has every knob (bar the reverb control) dimed. ****ing hell, that was good (even at 5 watts, this was loud). I switch back to the 6L6 once more, and it's like another amp entirely, another great amp.

Interestingly, the lower wattage EL84 is noticeably louder than the higher wattage 6L6. Not complaining. No longer confused, Martin Kidd (who designed and built this amp has answered why. Through either valve, the amp is incredibly touch reponsive (though the low end isn't quite as tight as the Hellcat).

Price per watt this will be the most expensive amp I'm likely to ever buy. Thankfully, I'm not somebody who buys into pricing by the watt.

And what you all came for...pics!!!







and some of it's big sister...





My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#2
Looks veryyyy nice. Cornford would definitely be one of the boutique amps I'd be looking to if i had the money. One day perhaps
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#3
wow

pardon me while i jizz
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#5


The Carrera was about €1200 (£949), and I got the Hellcat head for about €1750 (£1399, a whole £300 off the usual price). The cab I'm not sure of at the moment.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
Last edited by Prophet of Page at Jul 13, 2008,
#6
Christ on a trike.

Great thread Tom, that amp sounds heavenly. And it doesn't look too shabby either
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#7
wow, congrats man, sick amps. Very cool little review too, that's a badass setup. This thread isn't complete without some clips though man, love to hear these beauties.
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#8
I'll do my best to get some clips for both up during the week, but the only way I'd have of recording would be with a camcorder. That and I've another six day week at work starting tomorrow...
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#9
yeah, I hear ya man, need to earn the monies to afford these beauties. I have a couple great amps, and no time to play them since I'm working all the time to pay them off. Sure is a crappy tradeoff.
"The fool doth think he is wise, but the wiseman knows himself to be a fool." - W.S.
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#10
Yeah I hate you man!

Tempted to go to Galway and rob you and then replace your amps with the roadhouse

Sweet collection man


By any chance, you werent down in Kerry recently?

Because I saw a band play and their guitarist had a hellcat.
#11
Hmm, well unless Paul Cornford and Martin Kidd decide they want to make me some amps for free, I'll have to work as much as I do. I work up the money first and then buy though, I'm not going to let myself owe money to somebody until I need a mortgage.

I'm set with amps for now anyway, my next amp will be in the moderately distant future.

And no mate, I haven't been to Kerry in years.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#12
Quote by Erock503
yeah, I hear ya man, need to earn the monies to afford these beauties. I have a couple great amps, and no time to play them since I'm working all the time to pay them off. Sure is a crappy tradeoff.


Welcome to my world! I love those Cornfords, & would've probably bought one IF I COULD FIND ONE FOR SALE ANYWHERE IN THE USA! Those are incredibly rare over here.
Congrats on a stellar acquisition!
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#13
Quote by riffhog

Welcome to my world! I love those Cornfords, & would've probably bought one IF I COULD FIND ONE FOR SALE ANYWHERE IN THE USA! Those are incredibly rare over here.
Congrats on a stellar acquisition!



Thanks. There are plenty of American boutique brands though, I'm sure you could find something to suit you?
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#16
Quote by XtAsY2007
I'm getting a Cornford Hurricane soon, can't wait

Very nice amps


I hope you enjoy your Cornford as much as I enjoy mine. The Hurricane is a wonderful amp.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
Last edited by Prophet of Page at Jul 13, 2008,
#17
Quote by riffhog

Welcome to my world! I love those Cornfords, & would've probably bought one IF I COULD FIND ONE FOR SALE ANYWHERE IN THE USA! Those are incredibly rare over here.
Congrats on a stellar acquisition!

PM me man, I can get you a CRAZY deal on a Hellcat right now, new with warranty if you want one.
"The fool doth think he is wise, but the wiseman knows himself to be a fool." - W.S.
amp clips
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#18
MAJOR GAS!

Seriously, when I read this, I just wanted it NOW!

Nice buy there
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#19
i came hear for sound clips bro. NOW! haha
that thing looks sweet!! really sweet. i hope to hear it.
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#20
Quote by Prophet of Page
Thanks. There are plenty of American boutique brands though, I'm sure you could find something to suit you?


Oh, yeah. THAT is not a problem Ask Dave or Erock .
I was just so impressed with the sound & build quality of Cornfords when I checked them out at NAMM, esp the RK100 Kotzen model. Without question, they're one of the top 5 amps in the world, IMO, but things get very subjective at that price level.
I was seriously going to buy the RK, but couldn't get my hands on one for extensive loud testing, so I wound up w/ a 5150 III instead, which sounds similar to the RK, but not as articulate or as well built (but costs $1500 US less also!).
Congrats again. Awesome amp!
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#21
^

awesome collection there, tom. Cornfords are awesome. they're definitely on my shortlist (if not "to buy" list) when i have more money and more room to store more amps (!)...

I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

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#22
Teh secks, man! Very nice, indeed!
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#23
what's so great about Cornford?

i hear about em all the time, but dont know much about them.

could someone enlighten me, please?
#24
^Great tone, great quality, great features. More or less.
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#25

would love to own the mk50h.
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#26
Quote by neptune1988
what's so great about Cornford?

i hear about em all the time, but dont know much about them.

could someone enlighten me, please?



Quote by Gabel
^Great tone, great quality, great features. More or less.


^As said by Gabe.
But thats never the full whack, you really have to play one or hear one in person to see why they sound so amazing.
#27
Quote by False_God
^As said by Gabe.
But thats never the full whack, you really have to play one or hear one in person to see why they sound so amazing.

Yeah, they're something you have to experience the feel to appreciate them. The cool thing I noticed is that the ones I tried simply have no weak points. They do everything they're designed for way better than most, & are a seriously quality product. When I play an amp, I always look for weaknesses or things I would change. With Cornfords, there really aren't any. Just pick the model with the sound you want.
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#28
well, one weakness is the price.

and they aren't just as versatile as some of the multi-channel heads (at least from the point of view of being able to have loads of tones on the fly).

They are awesome, though... now i have a multi-channel head, cornford would be among my next ports of call for new amps...
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#29
Quote by Dave_Mc
well, one weakness is the price.


They're cheaper than Mesas in the UK and Ireland, and far higher quality. They're considerably cheaper than importing an American boutique amp of similar quality if you live on our side of the pond too. Expensive, sure, but I still think I'm getting value for my money.

Quote by Dave_Mc
and they aren't just as versatile as some of the multi-channel heads (at least from the point of view of being able to have loads of tones on the fly).


This is somewhat true. While I'd say the Hellcat is versatile in that it has two very different channels which both have great clean and overdriven tones (to me it seems more like two great single channel amps in one, rather than a normal two-channel amp that has dedicated clean and od channels), and the Carrera has alot of versatility in the switcheable valve bases, Cornfords are designed with an inherent tone in mind. Cornfords however, as riffhog said, perform exactly as they are designed to, with stunning response (I use this word too much) to your playing and the sound of the guitar itself.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#30
oh yeah, i agree on both points. I meant they were expensive (which they are), meaning they're hard to afford, rather than over-priced.

I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#31
Quote by Dave_Mc
oh yeah, i agree on both points. I meant they were expensive (which they are), meaning they're hard to afford, rather than over-priced.





Thankfully I don't smoke, rarely drink and don't hae a girlfriend to spend money on, meaning I can afford them easier than some.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#32
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?