'65 Deluxe Reverb review by Fender

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 9.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.1 (30 votes)
Fender: '65 Deluxe Reverb

Sound — 10
The Deluxe Reverb is one of, if not the most recorded amp in history, nearly every studio in the world has at least one. I think that speaks for itself, however, this is the 65 Reissue, not a 65 Blackface. The sound quality of the Deluxe is incredible. The clean sound can be swept anywhere from FAT, round clean tones to shrill, biting ones. And as it's modeled after an old Fender, to get the overdrive you have to turn it up. That overdrive is where this amp truly shines. No matter what guitar I run into in, the tone is uniquely Deluxe though the guitar's various characteristics do Shine through. The overdrive is sweet, singing and sustainful, everything you would expect. When run flat out with a pair of HOT buckers this amp can ALMOST reach metal territory. It certainly would do Page or Iommi justice though it excels at providing Stevie-esque tones. The amp starts to break up around 4 with humbuckers and more around 6 with single coils. Additionally, the reverb and "vibrato" are very luscious. The reverb in particular is extremely powerful and when the amp is running HOT I rarely have it above 2 or so. It can be swept anywhere from a slight bit of "room" to the absurdly reverb'd sound of surf music from the 50's. I rarely use the vibrato but it never fails me. The amp does have a little bit of basic hum, even with the volume on 0 and nothing plugged in but it is in fact,a tube amp. Even when recorded at low volumes the hum doesn't cause any trouble.

Overall Impression — 10
This is as close to my holy grail amp as I can get without going vintage. I wouldn't change a thing about it, she's a gem. Had I the money I would probably pick up a blackface pro reverb or deluxe but for $1000 new this is THE amp. Not only is it phenomenal on it's own, the way I generally use it, it's a fantastic base for pedals of all sorts, even without an effects loop. I run both a PRS and a Strat through it to equal success though the PRS tends to overdrive it a little bit too soon. I've never run a guitar through it which didn't Shine and come alive. Were it stolen I would do everything in my power to purchase another one just like it.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I feel this amp is quite durable and reliable, I never bring a backup with me. However, it does seem to eat tubes, power tubes in particular. I always play on 10 and control everything through my guitar, regardless of what I'm trying to do and that wears the left tube out more quickly than the right. To add a little life I usually swap them after about 4 months. The amp has never failed me aside from the occasional blown tube which I've come to expect running a PRS through it.

Features — 8
Pretty standard as far as your Vintage styled Fender amps go. Two channels, one with volume treble and bass and one with the same while adding reverb and "vibrato". The second channel also has a bright cap on it, adding a bit of shimmer to it. It's truly all tube (including the rectifier), 22 watts with two 6v6 power tubes, 3 12AX7s preamp tubes and 3 12AT7s for the reverb and vibrato. They come stock with a 5Y3 rectifier tube but I have since switched to a 5V4. I play anywhere from blues to funk, classic rock, jazz, old school metal and even some modern metal and it suits all of those needs, especially with the assistance of an OD pedal. I use the amp in my bedroom, my dorm room, my home studio, in the studio and when I'm playing live, it gets quite a lot of use. No matter what venue I play in it fills the room just right. Unmiked I can really let it rip and even when it's put in front of a mic I can get nice saturated tube tone out of it without deafening the audience in front of me. I only wish it had an effects loop! But this is true of the original blackface models as well so you can't expect the 65 RI to have one.

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