Windsor Studio 20W 1x12 Combo review by Peavey

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  • Features: 7
  • Sound: 3
  • Reliability & Durability: 6
  • Overall Impression: 3
  • Reviewer's score: 4.8 Poor
  • Users' score: 7 (4 votes)
Peavey: Windsor Studio 20W 1x12 Combo

Purchased from: Guitar Center Used

Features — 7
This is a 1x12 class A combo. It has 2 12ax7's and it can accept any Octal power tube (6L6, EL34, 6550, KT66, KT88, KT77, KT90, 5881, 6Ca7, 6V6 or any that are variants on these). It is a 20 watt rated amp, but that also depends on what tube you are running. The amp came with JJ Ecc83 preamp tubes and a JJ EL34 power tube. It is a single channel amp with foot-switchable reverb and boost. It has a pretty good FX loop also. There is also a built in power attenuator on the back. It is fairly light for a 1x12 tube combo, but I mark that up to the thinner MDF construction and the open back.

Sound — 3
I bought this amp as a grab and go practice amp. I had to buy blind because I could not find a used Windsor Studio in my area. I was expecting a Marshall Plexi/JCM800 type amp and it kinda is, but it is lacking in some areas pretty bad. First, there is no bass at all in this amp. I can dime the bass and completely roll off the mid and treble and it is still extremely bright. The gain is very fizzy/fuzzy in nature. The stock Blue Marvel speaker is not very good. The reverb is so-so but nothing special and can get out of control really easy. However, with some modifications and a tube and speaker swap it can be a decent Marshall-ish type amp.

Reliability & Durability — 6
It seems like a decent quality amp. The MDF cab is a little thin and will crack/chip if you bang it around. The knobs and jacks seem decent and I have not had any issues and I bought it over a year ago. The PCB is a decent thickness so it is easier to do work on and there are a surprising amount of decent components used in it (Mallory caps). I would gig with this amp if I needed to and I would not be afraid of it breaking down on me. The tolex is what I have come to expect from a cheap Made in China piece of gear. I would expect this amp to last me for years as a throw around unless I upgrade.

Overall Impression — 3
Over all it is an OK amp, but nothing special at all. If you play cleaner music or country it is fine, it even does '60s and '70s rock just fine. It does not do hard rock or metal very well (stock). I was expecting a different sounding amp than what I received, but with some mods and a speaker/tube change, it is a decent amp. For $150 I paid this amp has some nice features like FX loop, Reverb, Boost, Attenuator and it accepts any Octal power tube. I would have rather bought a 1x12 Peavey Valve King, Peavey VTM 1x12 or a Peavey Ultra 1x12 now that I look back on it. The only reason I have kept it is it only cost $150 and I can run my POD through the FX loop and have a nice sounding hybrid rig. If you want a classic British sound and your on a serious budget this amp is worth looking at. If you want to do modern rock or heavier styles look at a different amp.

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