Windsor Head review by Peavey

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.1 (39 votes)
Peavey: Windsor Head

Purchased from: Lee's Music

Sound — 8
I play a stock Fender Standard Series Stratocaster HSS with a Floyd-Rose and a Zeller's Washburn-Lyon Paul Stanely autographed guitar through this amp and I have to say that the Lyon definately comes alive through this amp, even though it's only a $280.00 CAD guitar. Despite what most people have said about this amp sounding too-thin and "brittle", set it with the preamp at max, push the Boost Switch in, and set texture at either class "A" or "A/B" and deliver a few power chords to it. It definately produces a classic Black Sabbath overdrive tone. As for cleans, simply roll the preamp volume down to about 1 or so and turn the gain boost off, the Windsor will now produce, depending on your guitar, a convincing "Stairway To Heaven" type clean. For modern metal, this amp could use a little more "sizzel" in the overdrive but other than that the amp, with the eq setup properly, can almost deliver the Van Halen "Brownsound." With the volume turned up (to about 2 or 3), you get a bit of tube hiss and feedback, so a good quality noise gate would be a worthwhile investment. The effects loop works good and my MXR EVH 90 phaser and Jimi Hendrix Wah Wah pedal sound a bit more "in your face" when plugged into it, versus being run in front of the preamp. I am going to rate the Windsor at 8/10 simply because the distortion lacks a little "sizzel" when cranked and it is a bit of a pain having to get up and drop the preamp volume to get the cleans.

Overall Impression — 9
This amp is a fairly great match for the music I play, which ranges from classic rock like Nazareth, Zeppelin, Hendrix, and Clapton to more modern rock like Wolfmother, and newer Van Halen. I've been playing for almost 4 and 1/2 years and this is the first amp I've found which has nearly everything I want in an amp at a price I can afford. If it were lost or stolen I would definatley buy it again. There is nothing I really hate or dislike about this amp except for there only being two inputs. The only thing I really wish this amp had built in is a high quality noise gate to keep those tubes silent.

Reliability & Durability — 10
The amp hasn't broken down yet (probley because I've only owned it for a couple weeks). I know that Peavey has got an excellent reputation for high-quality products and this amp is no exception. Right now I probably wouldn't use this amp at a gig without a backup simply because it's the first Peavey product I've ever owned. Once I've run this amp for a while without any problems, I would be more inclined to use it without a backup.

Features — 9
This amp is definately a rock machine. Despite having only one channel this amp can pack some serious power. This amp comes stock loaded with four EL34's in the power-amp section and three 12AX7's in the preamp. It also comes with a footswitchable effects loop and gain/midrange boost. The effects loop jacks are located directly in the middle of the front panel for easy access. This amp also features a three-band eq in the preamp and presence and resonance controls which affect the top and bottom end of the frequency range. The power-amp section also features Peavey's patented "Texture" control which allows you to change from Vintage class "A" opperation to modern class "A/B" opperation. On the back panel, there are two speaker jacks wired in parallel, so it is possible to run only one cabinet. There is also a Switch that allows you to run 4, 8, or 16 ohms into the speaker cabs. Downside on this amp's features are that there is no headphone jack (like you really need one), and there are only two input jacks, one high gain and one low gain. The upside is that both jacks can be run simultaneously but they will both be low gain. I am giving this amp a 9/10 because it has most of the features I would ever use in an amp.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Korzack wrote: I managed to find this & the 4x12 cab that goes with on sound control for 370 for the pair set. Worth a shot? Worth bearing in mind I am a student, so I'll be leaving it until my 2nd year when I'm into a proper house before buying this behemoth.
    I wouldn't get the matching cab, it SERIOUSLY dulls the sound of the amp. I have Weber signature series speakers in a 2x12 and it sounds tight and crunchy.