'68 Custom Twin Reverb review by Fender

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  • Features: 10
  • Sound: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 1
  • Overall Impression: 5
  • Reviewer's score: 6.5 Neat
  • Users' score: 8 (2 votes)
Fender: '68 Custom Twin Reverb

Price paid: £ 1150

Purchased from: PMT Salford

Features — 10
Made in Mexico in 2014. 4 channels. Has vintage Twin Reverb high and low channel and Fender Bassman high and low channel. Power tubes are 4x6l6 tubes, pre amp 4xAX7 and 2x12AT7. It's a loud beast at 85 watts into 4 ohms. And with most tube combos weighs as much as an elephant (65 pounds to be exact) has two Celestion G12 V 70 speakers and tilt back legs which are a great feature so you can hear yourself more clearly at gigs without turning the volume to 11. Classic Fender Spring Reverb and Tremolo. Also comes with foot switch.

Sound — 10
The sound is what you'd expect from a Fender tube amp and more so a Fender Twin, crisp cleans and bell ringing treble. I play mostly strats and this amp really does make your strat sing, with the Middle and bass control turned to 8 and with the brightness switch on its the best clean strat sound I've ever heard. It has tons of headroom being 85 watts so you need a decent overdrive pedal in front so move away from the cleans. I use a Carl Martin hot drive and boost and you can really nail the Eric Johnson sound. The bass man channel sounds just like a Fender Bassman amp. What more can I say.

Reliability & Durability — 1
Now this is where it goes sour. I had this amp 4 months and loved it, it was a pleasure every time I used it for a gig or rehearsal then one day nothing it totally died on me. Contacted Fender and after some nagging they agreed to repair it free of charge. An internal filament fuse went meaning it had to be sent off. I've heard this happening to other people's twin too so must be a design flaw. As a result I would never ever take this amp to a gig without a backup. I can't trust Fender's build quality for a £1150 amp.

Overall Impression — 5
Great sound and great look and plenty of volume but with the reliability issue this is all irrelevant because if the filament fuse goes it's as much use as a chocolate tea pot. By all means try one and buy one to nail the true Fender clean sound but always take a back up amp head or amp. Personally I would not buy this amp again, there's plenty of amp choices out there and many of them are more reliable then the '68 Custom Twin. If yours does go make sure you nag Fender until they do for free like I did, because there very reluctant to spend there money on you.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Never, Ever, buy any electronics Made in Mexico. I Love Mexico. Lived south of Guadalajara for 10 years and any Mexican will tell you: Never, Ever, buy anything electronic Made in Mexico. Reliability is right out the window due to poor quality control in the factories. Hint: Sony is the worst!
    bradnixon100's review of this amp is spot on. I have always wanted an amp like this. Look what the Beatles were using on the rooftop concert. Its clear as a bell, a super fine Fender amplifier. I loved it! But then, after having this amp for 11 months and only in my home - I switch on the amp and nothing, nada, zilch. Replacement fuse doesn't do the trick. Just absolutely no power. Out it goes to the authorized repairman. He replaces an internal fuse but then other issues arise. Crackle, fizz, noise when you touch the faceplate. Its now pushing three weeks for a pristine, brand new amp. Since 1982, I have replaced all of three tubes on my Fender Concert amp and its been with me to h and back. It still sings beautifully. What gives on this $1200.00 amp? I found a Bruce Zinky quote that describes the situation: "Here's why quality is job one: A great sounding amp that breaks down goes from being a favorite piece of gear to a piece of crap in less time than it takes to read this sentence." End quote. And end peace of mind for this one.
    I have had mine for about a year. I would rate it 10/10/9/10. I bought it for a "song" and relied on the Fender 1/5 warranty. I had one problem, which was a loose reverb connector to the amp that was easily repaired. That being said, I really enjoy playing the amp. Both channels are fantastic sounding and it is as good as it gets short of Fender making a reissue of the Dual Showman with Reverb on top of a cabinet that has 2 vintage 15" JBL's. IMHO there is no amp that sounds better than a Fender Tube Amp. Now, I must say the amp is not taken on the road. I use it as my practice amp with the band. That being said in summary my experience thus far has been great and would buy it again.