AD30TC Combo Review

manufacturer: Orange date: 11/05/2012 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Orange: AD30TC Combo
This Orange AD30TC Combo is a 30 watt, Twin channel tube combo loaded with 2 Vintage celestion 30s.
 Sound: 9.7
 Overall Impression: 9
 Reliability & Durability: 7
 Features: 8.3
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reviews (3) pictures (1) 21 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.3
AD30TC Combo Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 11, 2009
3 of 4 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1900

Purchased from: jims

Features: This Orange AD30TC Combo is a 30 watt, Twin channel tube combo loaded with 2 Vintage celestion 30s. I bought this because it was not so boomy like the other Orange tend to be and had the right amount of gain I wanted. People might want an effects loop, but it doesn't bother me because I only use my Sunface BC-108 and Wattson Super Fuzz with it. I use it in my room and Jam with it a lot; it's plenty loud. Doesn't have too much headroom but that's not what Orange's are for! You gotta crank it! // 9

Sound: I use a Gibson Les Paul Studio with stock pickups and it sounds great. I play anything from Death Cab to The Fall Of Troy, but nothing too br00t4lz past that. It's really great from Indie rock like arctic monkeys to doom metal like the sword. it's as if Orange modeled it after a Vox AC-30 but gave it more grit. Doesn't hiss when turned up. People seem to complain about Orange being a one trick pony and I dissagree because it cleans up really well and I can get many different clean and distorted sounds out of it with just the dry signal. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I have had it for about 3 months now and nothing has gone wrong. I would gig without a backup because nothing has gone wrong and I play with the volume up around 7-8 all the time (I have awesome neighbors). I gave it an 8 because I haven't had it that long. // 8

Overall Impression: It fits my musical style which is centered around the Who, Zeppelin, The Fall Of Troy and Indie rock in general. If it were lost or stolen I would cry because I spent a lot of moneys on it. I love the distortion I get from it and the ability to get many different sounds out of it. The only issue I have with it is the amp that when I tried it out with other effects like delay it doesn't sound great because it doesn't have an effects loop. This amp isn't for everyone but if you play Indie or harder rock up to wolfmother/the fall of troy, buy it! // 10

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overall: 7
AD30TC Combo Reviewed by: unregistered, on april 26, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 2100

Purchased from: Gallins Guitars

Features: About 4+ weeks ago bought myself an Orange AD30TC 2x12 combo. I also managed to get it in the 'Limited Edition 2009' white tolex. Very basic in terms of features: 2 fully independent foot switchable channels, 30 Watts of 'Class A' (really class A/B) british/vintage style tube amp. Powered by 4xEL84's, 4x12AX7's in the preamp, and one GZ34 tube rectifier. No effects loop, or reverb, or foot Switch included, pretty much just you and the amp. For the hefty price, some other features would have been nice. Also has 2x12 Vintage 30's. With that said, both channels go from clean to crunch to distortion, with Channel 2 having more gain on tap. With any latching foot Switch plugged in you have yourself some versatility; you're not just stuck with a clean channel and a distortion channel! // 8

Sound: I Play with a Fender American 50th Anniversary Strat' HSS, and a MIJ Fender Tele 62' Reissue. The amp brings out the natural sounds of these guitars with fantastic clarity and response in the cleans, and a sublime crunchy distortion. The amp isn't that dark like some would expect from an Orange. I hear lots of people talk about the Orange distortion, and now I see what the fuss is about, and don't write off the cleans, they are definitely usable. The Tele' is twangy, the Strat' humbucker has great bite and punch, while the single coil neck pickup is great for some Hendrix type stuff. I also use a modded Tubescreamer 808, an EHX Big Muff Pi, and an Ulbrick Phataxe Overdrive pedal. They all sound great through it, finally a sound that I am truly enjoying. I also have read others claim that it doesn't have much headroom, but I have not had any issues. Ive had the master near full (as its incredibly loud) and it stays clean. Just make sure you back off on the gain. I am very happy with the sound of this amp; the more I play it, the more I like it. 60's, 70's classic/hard rock is right up this amp's alley, even modern rock, punk is easily doable with the amount of gain available. But no metal sound here. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Wow, just wow. For a new amp it has been bad for the 4 weeks or so I have had it in regards to reliability. Dodgy stock power tubes and preamp tubes. All were replaced. Had Tung-sol 12AX7's and the tougher 'Military Grade' Sovtek EL84M's put in it by an amp tech. After that I had no issue for about 2 weeks, then rectifier tube fails. So now that is getting fixed. Also, one of the knobs fell off when I got home after the initial purchase, C'mon seriously? At least glue them on properly. According to the amp tech, he gets a lot of these AD series amps come through because Orange pump too much gain into the not so good stock tubes, and thus, they fail. Really I may have to play with a backup, it just hasn't made the best of starts and I don't have much confidence in it at the moment. I may even consider selling it soon if it stuffs up after the rectifier tube replacement. I really don't want to though, but no point having a great sounding amp that craps itself constantly when you can get something just as good that is actually reliable. // 3

Overall Impression: Really great sounding amp, but really poor in terms of reliability so far. If you get one, I hope it doesn't pull the same crap as it has with me. Anyone expects better out of a new top of the range tube amp, even if it does have a PCB board (cheapest way to wire up an amp) and is mass produced. Boutique amps were out of my price range, so I went for this one. The sound I love, I play it for an hour or two, take a break, then I want to play it again for another few hours. Its amazing how some new gear can reignite your interest in an instrument; just as I was really getting bored with my old gear. If it were stolen, I would cry, really that's $2000 stolen from you, and you probably won't get it back. I would probably save up for a handmade boutique amp, maybe even the Head/Cab version of this amp. // 8

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overall: 9.3
AD30TC Combo Reviewed by: riviera94, on november 05, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: This review is for the head and not the combo. A two channel amp tube amp, with no frills - plenty loud through a 212 Cab - would appreciate reverb in this, not much to ask considering the (if bought first hand) price and the competition. 8 is for the price and lack of reverb. // 8

Sound: I am using it for post punk and jazz fusion; it is sympathetic to both. I don't think it is 'voiced dark' - it all depends how you dial the thing in. There is no hum from this amp, although my guitar pickups are quite silent so this could help. My drummer fears some of the distortion and volume leaps I use - I use channel one for stays cleans with the gain low and run effects into the front - contrary to what some say it handles effects absolutely fine as long as the gain is not excessive and the effects are in suitable chain - I run a delay first into a tremolo/pitch shifter/reverb/ Devi Ever shoegazer/crybaby wah. The second channel is my amp distortion and is beast - I crank it loud for jumps in tone and volume. The distortion is dependent on volume, breaks up well. Anything can sound brutal if you play it right(wrong?). // 10

Reliability & Durability: As a head rather than a combo the tubes last longer - it is built like a tank. People have complained about Orange stock tubes but I think this really depends on whether you have a combo or not. Combo's kill tubes, especially when cranked. // 10

Overall Impression: This amp will permit you a host of beautiful tones as long as you know how to dial them in, that you have a sound in mind when playing. It fits what I do perfectly. I have been playing for twelve years and currently use a japanese Jazzmaster with Seymour Duncan quarter pounder pickups. Still wish Orange built reverb into it although there is nothing cheap/flat about the sound from this amp. A common complaint with this amp is that it hates pedals - I think those complaints involve digital Multi-FX units as I have had no probs with electro harmonix, boss, Dunlop or Devi Ever pedals. This amp is comparable to the Vox Ac30's, but with better distorted tones. It was a close call between this and a Rockerverb MK2 and this won out simply through having more channel versatility and being a lower price. // 9

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