YCS100H Review

manufacturer: Traynor date: 08/19/2013 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Traynor: YCS100H
The Custom Special 100H's true three-channel architecture offers full control of each and every channel. No shared EQ's or pseudo "channels" here.
 Sound: 9
 Overall Impression: 9.5
 Reliability & Durability: 9
 Features: 9.3
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reviews (5) pictures (1) 7 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.5
YCS100H Reviewed by: hendrix4934, on january 05, 2008
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 800

Purchased from: Guitar store

Features: The Traynor YCS100 head or Custom 100 Special is a pretty recent model from Traynor I believe. It is extremely veristle. I play just about anything ranging from Jazz to Death Metal, It can cover pretty much every style. It is a true 3 channel amp with a global Master volume, Presence, and Resonance Controls. Each channel has a control for gain, volume, equalazation, reverb and effects (for the effects loop). Each channel has a gain boost function and a button to get a more modern sound. The crunch and red channel have a button to scoop the mids, and the clean channel has a bright function. There is a headphones output and a D.I function. The footswitch controls the channels and there is a solo boost function which is very cool and kinda sounds like a tube screamer when it's on. This is an all tube 100 watt head. But, you can bring it down to 30 watts which is very cool. I use this amp for recording primarily and it's great. // 9

Sound: I use a strat, and a Jackson dinky with this amp. The clean channel will get you a great classic Marshall Plexi tone and for a clean channel, It is extremely versitle. I cranked this thing up to around 8 and set the gain around 3 o'clock. This setting got me up to Metallica type gain which was amazing for a clean channel. The crunch channel starts around a Marshall Plexi with the gain fairly low, You can get this channel up to high gain stages pretty easily though. The red channel gets great Mesa/Boogie type tones. Unbelievable sound when It's cranked, and just about no feedback. You can achieve a great high gain sound on this channel. You could survive a 2 hour gig with no effects except maybe a wah. The amp is one of the most verisitle I've seen in a long time. And it's very simple to use. // 9

Reliability & Durability: No problems so far. I would use it during a gig without a backup. The amp has never broken down on me and I have been very happy with the reliability.Plus, Traynor has an amazing two year warranty on it so I am pretty confident that I won't need to fix it or anything like that. Traynor is pretty reliable. // 10

Overall Impression: For alternative and metal, this amp sounds great. It will suit just about any style you want. I have been playing for almost 2 years and own lots of pedals but I ownly use my fuzz face and wah wah for this amp. I would buy this again if it where stolen and am more happy then I thought I would be with it. I love the versatility and simplicity of the amp and have compared it to just about every amp under 2000 dollars. There is nothing you could add to make this better. // 10

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overall: 9.5
YCS100H Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 03, 2007
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Features: This is the new 3-channel amp from Traynor, a Canadian company known for their early tube amps that are basically less expensive Bassmans and JTM45s. This amp has no frills, but it has what you would most likely ever want in a good sounding tube amp: - a series FX loop (input goes to power amp) - a parallel FX loop (each channel has a separate send level) - 3 true/discrete channels with separate eq and settings - nice sounding spring rev, separate setting on each channel - a tuner output jack and a tuner Switch that kills the sound while you tune (but not with a footswitch, yet) - a solo boost in the power amp section (I love this) - self-biasing circuit to Switch from 6l6s to el34s (el34s are stock) - a headphones out with a spkr sim (that sounds pretty good) - 100 watt AB mode, or a 30 watt A mode. // 10

Sound: Playing in a cover band going from country to Green Day and everything in between; with a PRS Custom 22 and a modified Strat with a bunch of bells and whistles. I need a lot of different sounds. I love this amp. Best way I can describe it: the tone is very focused. With leads, there is no messiness or buzziness to the tone, very lyrical, and if you overdrive the el34s it chugs really nicely! I would buy this thing again in a second. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Traynor apparently used to test their chassis and cases by throwing them off a 2-storey building, puttin tubes back in and seein if it still worked. This amp is covered by a 2 years unconditional warranty, and it says somewhere in the literature that if you break it on purpose, they will fix it free. That being said, the chassis appears to be solid enough. I would prefer thicker plywood in the case, but at 50 pounds it's heavy enough. I gig without a backup, unless you count my PodXT Live that I use in the series loop (truth be known, the POD really throttles the tone but I need lots of FX for some tunes and can't afford a GSHarp yet). // 9

Overall Impression: I've been playing a long time, 25 years (I'm an old guy). This amp kills, with a decent clean sound, a nice brown Vintage Marshall channel, and a souped-up Rectifier-like gain channel. I have to admit, I like this amp better than the rectifiers, although you can't compete with their gain meltdown! Never been a fan of Mesa because of reliability. Although my 1968 Traynor YBA-1 sounds incredible, the Custom Special sounds fantastic, has great features and seems roadworthy. Not to mention it's got the best crunch for the buck you'll find in North America! // 9

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overall: 8
YCS100H Reviewed by: unregistered, on march 30, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 900

Purchased from: ProAudioStar

Features: It was dropped shipped from the Traynor factory warehouse. It's brand new in 2010-11. It has what I need. Clean, lightly broken up and overdriven sounds. It has three channels with separate gain, volume, tone and verb controls, plus scoop and boost switches for each as well. It has a master presence and resonance and volume. It's all tube, and was shipped with EL34s but it can be set up for 6L6s. I intend to use it the same places I used previous amps, for live gigs, rehearsals and studio sessions. I'm sure it has plenty of power. // 8

Sound: After a bit of knob twisting and strumming and riffing it actually sounds pretty good, good enough even. It's not really noisy. It can be clean until the powertubes distort. The distortion when the boost is added is way over kill. On my lead channel I set the gain at 9am and use the boost. On my broken up channel I set the gain at 10:30am without the boost. The clean channel gain is set at 8am as well. // 8

Reliability & Durability: It has a two year warranty. I'm fairly sure I could depend on it, but I'm not ready to sell my other amp to prove it. The footswitch acted funny the other day, requiring me to click the Switch for the clean channel selection twice before it would switch. But today it works fine. // 7

Overall Impression: I play everything that is music and for the last 42 years. I bought it sight unseen, but knowing my ability to bring out the best in even the worst sounding amps, I had confidence I could at least manage an ok sound from it. Two days later I had a great sound out of it. I compared it to my previous amps, including the VHT UL and Lucky 13 and all my Mesa, Marshall, Ampeg, PV and Crate amps. At first I thought I would have to run it along with a amp switcher and my BV120 in order to have the perfect sound for lead solos, but I was able to tweak the amp until I got the right sound. It sounds sorta like a Hi-watt crossed with a Soldano without the huge power reserves available for the transients like those amps have. It can also be dialed in to sound thin and raspy like a Marshall or loose and fizzy like a Boogie*. *like when those amps are used by amateurs. // 9

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overall: 9.8
YCS100H Reviewed by: guitarkhw1, on august 19, 2013
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 400

Purchased from: craigslist

Features: The Traynor YCS100H is 100w all tube, with 3 channels and a solo boost and gain boost feature for each channel. Also has modern and scoop button for channel 1 and 2, and modern and bright for channel 3. Each channel has a separate eq, reverb, and fx controls. Can also run the Amp in 30w mode by flipping switch on the back. Has a Master volume, presence, and resonance. This is by far the most features from a tube amp I've ever owned. I traded my Fender 100w Twin for this amp because i wanted an amp that could play multiple styles, and this amp does not disappoint. // 10

Sound: I play a Gibson "The Paul" with a Pearly Gates in the Neck and an Air Norton in the bridge. Channel 1 is the heavy gain "Mesa" channel and it has tons of gain. Channel 2 is medium gain "Marshall" channel and it has a nice smooth distortion. It can still get quit a lot of gain. Channel 3 is clean and it has a nice warm plexi kinda clean. Has a very good amount of clean headroom available but not as much as my Twin had. Still get what I need out of it. Channel 1 also can do blues well by pressing the boost button which gives it some breakup. This amps sound very well and for the price I paid is almost unbelievable. I would give it a 9.5 because the clean isn't as great as Fender clean, but still very good. The gain channels are just as good or better as any Marshall or mesa I've played. I play in a band and we cover classic rock to metal. Has all the distortion I could use. The amp is the quietest amp I've ever owned even on high gain. The reverb is decent. Extremely impressed with the overall sounds this amp can produce. Performs like an amp that cost twice or even three times as much. // 9

Reliability & Durability: i use the amp to gig with and have never had a problem. The amp weighs about 41 pounds so it's pretty heavy for a head but not as bad as my 90 pound twin. The amp seams to be made with ver good quality. Very tough amp. The previous owner said he used for gigs also. He said he had just re tubed the amp recently. I do not use a backup for gigs. The amp is as solid as a rock. The LED for the the bright button on channel 3 needs replaced. It came that way. That is the only thing that does not work as it should. // 10

Overall Impression: I play everything from southern rock, beatles, Floyd, Zeppelin, Metallica, Tool, Alice in Chains, Stp, Chevelle, Black Keys, and have not found any genre this amp does not do well. I bought a Fender Twin for 400 but needed something that was more versatile while also sounding well in the process and this amp does the job. I traded the Twin straight up and am happy I did. I really like the fact that each channel is completely separate. Can dial in how much I want the fx loop on each channel. So if I want chorus only on the clean channel I don't have to turn off the chorus every time I go to distortion.The solo feature also comes in handy when you want a little more volume for solo's or whatever. I played a Rect-o-Verb ($1000), Marshall DSL40 (699), Blackstar HT 40 (699) and Budda (1000). The Traynor was the best of the bunch while at the same time costing less money. The Budda would have been my next choice. I've been playing guitar for 15 years now. My dad who only owns top notch gear was extremely impressed with the gain channel and how quiet the amp was. I also own a 1979 Gibson "The Paul" and a Taylor 110. I use the amp with an eminence 1x12 Commonwealth speaker and my dad built the cabinet. I do want to get a Vintage Alvarez Yairi guitar one day and maybe one day a Fender Twin Reverb for clean and a Diezel for gain. Until then I'll be using the Traynor. If I paid 1,000 for this amp I would give it 4.5 stars. Since I paid only 400 I give it 5 stars or 10/10. Before I bought the Twin guy at Guitar Center talked me into getting the Peavey Vypyr vip3 which I took back a few days later. // 10

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