Hot Rod Deluxe review by Fender

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.8 (211 votes)
Fender: Hot Rod Deluxe

Price paid: $ 699

Purchased from: AB Stevens

Sound — 9
I play mostly 80s rock like Cinderella, Iron Maiden, AC/DC... this Fender Python really sounds good - very clean and articulate and extremely loud. The reverb is decent, but the overdrive is kind of lacking - definitely not 'death metal'. I used an MXR distortion pedal up front on the clean channel and crack the MXR all the way... the result is very powerful 80s rock sound. Using pedals such as delay, chorus, and phase on the effects loop is luscious. The clean channel does not seem to break up at high volumes so it is very strong in that department too. As I said, the built-in overdrive is lacking - you will need a distortion pedal for sure.

Overall Impression — 10
If it were stolen, I'd certainly try to buy it again, but keep in mind this is a limited production to only 500 units. My favorite feature has to be the tubes and the effects loop. I have a new Crate V18-212 and this Fender is miles ahead of the Crate by comparison.

Reliability & Durability — 9
I believe one could certainly gig with this amp without a backup. 40W all tube is very loud so I suspect the amp would only be running 50% at best - if not mic'd. I've not had this new amp long enough for servicing but I have not had a minute of trouble from it thus far. It seems very well built and you just can't beat the looks of it!

Features — 10
This is a review for the new, limited edition, PYTHON snakeskin edition. Limited to 500 units. This Hot Rod Deluxe Python come with snakeskin covering, 1x12 Celestion Vintage 30 speaker, all tube with 40 watts and preamp sent to 6 matched pair of Groove Tube 6L6s. It has independent gain and master controls on the Drive channel with a 2-button, 3-function footswitch for channel select, Drive select and more Drive select. A bright Switch, excellent effects loop, reverb, and external speaker jack. I use this amp at home, but it is very powerful - not good for 'bedroom' but well enough for giging over drummer.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    this amp has one of the best clean sounds i ever heard this is really my favorite
    The drive channel is pretty weak, but the cleans are amazing. I'll probably get one by the end of this month and use an OD and a booster for the drive, and I'm done!
    i just got one a few days ago and cant quit playing it. if it wasnt early in the morning and my neighbors/roommates wernt sleeping i'd be playing now. i got it for $400 from Guitar center. i went in to try the deville since i was going to get one off craigs list for the same price, but played this one, which had just been re-tubed, and couldnt walk away from it. i dont play metal at all, so the "lack of gain" i keep reading about is no worry to me. it breaks up so beautifully with the gain even at 3 or 4. you can play a nice soft clean sound with the gain on and then rip a few notes off and get that cream-your-pants sound i dreamed about. i play a MIM ash body tele, a custom HH tele, and a 96 HSS american strat through it. all sound 100% than they did on my old fm65r and pro roc 1000. (im a fender guy...) now granted, this is my first tube amp, but ive played a handful at stores, and this one stuck with me. i literally could not walk away from it.