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Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head  

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Unleashing 50 watts from a pair of 6L6 power tubes and all the features of the JCA100H, the JCA50H 50W tube guitar amp head from Jet City is ideal fo...Read More

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OVERVIEW

Lots of distortion in a lightweight 50-watt amp head, great for taking out on the road.

Unleashing 50 watts from a pair of 6L6 power tubes and all the features of the JCA100H, the JCA50H 50W tube guitar amp head from Jet City is ideal for gigging musicians who need plenty of stage volume with some nice power amp distortion. The Normal channel on this Jet City amp head can range from clean tones to dirty Rock riffs. The Overdrive channel is the Soldano high-gain lead tone. Pair it up with the Jet City JCA48S for a powerful half-stack, or one or two of the JCA24S 2x12 cabs for extra versatility.

FEATURES
  • Amp Head Channels: Normal and Overdrive, footswitchable with included footswitch
  • Controls: Normal and Overdrive Preamps, Bass, Middle, Treble, Normal and Overdrive Masters, Presence
  • Effects Loop: Tube buffered serial

SPECIFICATIONS

JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head

  • Tubes: 5 x 12AX7 Preamp / 2 x 6L6 Power
  • Cabinetry: Multi-ply, void-free hardwood
  • Chassis: 16-gauge, cold-rolled steel
  • Output Power: 50W into 16 ohm or 2 x 8ohm speaker outputs
  • Input Power: Multi-tapped power transformer at 100v/120v/220v/240v and standard IEC connector
  • Dimensions: 9-1/2" x 9-1/2″ x 25″
  • Weight: 40lb.
Reviews
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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
Jet City AmplificationJCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head
 
4.9

(based on 7 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

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Reviewed by 7 customers

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(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great out of the box, excellent with mod

By Somesense

from College Station, TX

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Better With Mods
  • Excellent Sound
  • Spans Multiple Genres
  • Well-built

Cons

  • Channels Do Not Cooperate
  • Finicky Effects Loop

Best Uses

  • Home Studio
  • Performances

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

I bought this amp about 6 months ago and it sounded great out of the box. I've been playing a custom Warmoth Strat through this amp and the matching 2x12 cab. Both the amp and the cab are excellent.

Out of the box, I was most impressed by the high gain sound and mid-gain sounds. The clean was alright, though a bit hard to dial in. The amp sounds great across its full range of gain. I play in a metal band and in a contemporary worship band at church and this amp performs with clarity in both settings.

The biggest issue I had out of the box with this amp was the darkness of the gain channel and trebliness of the clean channel. Both can be dialed in very well using the eq, but since the eq is shared, it's hard to get both a good clean and high-gain sound, although two midgain sounds work better with the eq. A dark gain channel tends to make things muddy while a bright clean channel can be a little unpleasant.

Additionally the effects loop is designed for line level effects and doesn't handle most pedals very well. This is easily fixed.

I made a couple mods to the amp a few weeks ago. Changing the preamp tubes to Teslas and Tung Sols made things sound better to me. Less bright, almost less cliche. I changed the power tubes to JJ KT66s, which make the amp sound bigger. The preamp circuit is very closely based on the SLO100, however a couple resistor and capacitor values have been changed. I assume this is to keep the SLO100 circuit "special". It took five minutes to convert the circuit back to the Soldano version, which made everything sound better. The channels balance each other better now. The gain channel has more of that "alive" sound people say Soladanos have. (Please pardon the inconcrete language. I'm really only going for impressions because this language is thrown around so much most people understand more or less what it's referring to.) I took the mod a little further and changed the cathode bypass cap on the second valve to make the gain channel a little less muddy. I also brought the effects loop back down to normal pedal impedance, which required changing all of two components. Finally, I added a depth control, which shapes the low-mids much more effectively. It's easier to get the sounds you want and it's got more of that low-mid punch without bottom end flub that can make or break a good metal tone. Call it a balls control. It doesn't make so much of a difference for lead-playing but it revolutionizes rhythm playing. None of these mods were expensive or difficult. Anyone who knows much about soldering can find and do them in a day.

In conclusion, this amp sounds great out of the box. With mods, you end up with Soldano's circuit and the amp sounds fantastic. They also make the amp easier to live with and I'm very satisfied with mine now. On the other hand, the amp sounds very good without the mods. The only issues are the difference in the channel voicings, which can be frustrating, and the effects loop irregularity, which can be even more frustrating. If you can't do mods and have lots of pedals to put in your effects loop that don't work with line-level impedance, this could be a problem for you. Otherwise, the amp will be great without changing anything and only better if you get a chance to make a couple modifications. Be sure to change tubes out if you get a chance. That's easy.

A word about the cab. It sounds good with the eminence speakers. They're very flat, which makes the low end sound better. However, they can lack some of the (potentially annoying) peakiness that vintage 30s or something similar offer. I'm planning on swapping one of the cabs out for a speaker more in that vein because I'm expecting the blended sounds to be better than the eminence on its own. That being said, I like the eminence driver better than vintage 30s.

Both the head and cab are extremely well-built. Sturdy. Heavy in a good way. The knobs are quality, as are all the components on the board so far as I can tell. The transformers are big and while not the famous O'netics used in real SLOs, I imagine they do the job about as well as they were specced out by Soldano himself. The amp sounds fantastic. I highly recommend it as you get a lot of amp for your money, all of it operating on the same basic schematic as the SLO100, Double Rectifier, 5150, etc. etc. The thing sound great.

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

JCA50

By chop883-t3zpx

from Traverse City, MI

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Easy To Use
  • Excellent Sound
  • Good Warmth
  • Powerful

Cons

  • Limited Functions

Best Uses

  • Amateur Recording
  • Home Studio
  • Performances

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

Mike Soldano's involvement in Jet City is evident. This is amazing, and I mean truly amazing. It is a professional looking and professional sounding amplifier. It responds to each of my guitars properly, has the perfect amount of midrange. I am just overjoyed that Jet City has proven it is possible to have and excellent sounding tube amplifier at a great price. Mine is bone stock, with the stock chinese tubes in it still and I do not want to change a thing. I spend 90% of my time on the hi gain lead channel. WIth the Gain dimed, it is very low noise compared to other amps. I have owned pretty much all of them and still have some very expensive heads and rack gear, and yet I plug in to my little Jet City 50 daily while the Rectifiers and Marshalls stay idle. Everyone has different needs and wants different features. For me, if the effects loop was footswitchable, this would be the only amp I would need. I might just mod it to have a footswitchable effects loop. If I do, I can sell about 6 other amps in my collection. I really dig this. Up to now, I was also very impressed with the B-52 AT-100 designed by Egnater for B-52. They made a hot rod marshall in a cheap price point. Just because it has a rectifier tube does not make it a Mesa clone, it is a Marshall preamp circuit almost exactly. But the Jet City is much better in terms of quality, fit, finish and tone. The SLO-100 preamp sounds great and I am getting addicted to it. The clean channel can sound a little thin by itself, but I don't knock it for this because most people will be using thier own pedals in front of this channel so no problem there. I recommend this amp. I play high gain 90s grunge like Tool and Alice in Chains and this amp delivers perfectly. It sounds good with a Les Paul for Grunge, and can even do SRV tones with a strat without pedals if you get your EQ right. The shared EQ is kind of a drag sometimes, but again, if I remind myself of the price point, I get over it quick. Buy one.

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

JCA50H

By Allen Dean

from Sacramento, California

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

Ok...
Overall, i give this amp an 8. Not because there is much wrong sonically, but it is an inexpensive head, mass wired, and using mass produced parts. Were this a hand wired, boutique head, you could expect to pay 3,000 dollars for a comparable tone. The Soldano tone is recognizable instantly once you get this amp over 4 in the o.d. Volume stage. Once there, this amp shines. For metal, would think all you need would be a nice tube driven overdrive. For old school metal, a noise gate is all you need. This amp lacks reverb, and the loop seems a little noisy when muted for tuning. I am currently running a line6 floorboard with this, and i find it colors the tone in a negative way. I reccomend going all analog with an amp like this. I am building my pedalboard as we speak.
Overall, i am pleased as can be with this amp. My B-52 ATH100 was a one trick metal pony. This amp has tone, color and personality to spare. Good for any genre of music, and for the price, worth its weight in gold
I have had my New 50 Watt Jet City head for a couple of weeks now.
The amp does exactly what it is supposed to; deliver all tube warmth, gain and tone. As far as features go, this is a no-frills tube amp. No reverb, two channels, and simple design. Knobs are inexpensive, as are the power and standby switches. I have no doubt, however, that this is a road, gig or tour worthy amp. In spite of the basic parts, it is a well constructed amp.
In terms of quality, even with stock tubes, is amp gets a gritty, dirty, crunchy or clean tone, depending on how you set it up. In reality, people buy Soldano-designed amps for the gain channel. Yet, i have find a really nice clean tone, that takes a little dirt and shines.
For the price of an inexpensive Marshall cabinet, you can buy this great little amp! The value factor is only surpassed by the fun factor of playing this monster...

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(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Zachy Vengance uses one

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

Zachy Vengeance from Ax7 uses the 100 watt version of this. That being said, there's no way in HELL you could say this amp cant do metal. I'm the guitarist from Perfectly Unstable, were about to release an album, and this is the best amp I've ever used. Definitely gig worthy. I bought it used, a total steal by the way, and the only problem i have with it is the light. It fluctuates in brightness, but doesn't affect the sound at all. Even with the stock tubes, this amp kicks ass. Seriously, its amazing. I'm gonna replace the tubes just so i can get more punch, and more cleans at higher volumes (if that makes any sense). I'm running this through a Jet City 24s, that's a 2 12 cab, and I love my stack's tone.Buy one. that's all i can say.

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Hands down the best amp I've ever played

By Jdog1

from Minnesota

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

There are a lot of new amp companies out there that claim to have the sweetest tones or the soul of valves but I'm here to tell you that Jet City has them all beat, especially at the price point that this amp is at. It's nearly impossible for me to describe just how awesome this amp sounds, especially on a stage - this is where it shines the most. A mid crunch to die for that cuts through the mix with ease. It's like a JCM 800 on steroids. The harmonics that I can produce are sweet as butter. It's just that good. If you're looking to get into a tube amp for under $800 don't bother with the Bugera's, Peavey's and Blackstars of the world. Skip right to Jet City. You won't regret it. The next best amp to this would be a $3,000 Soldano Hot Rod 50 (which this amp is essentially a clone of with a few cheaper parts). By the way, with a boost it can do any and all metal. Without it can do anything from AC/DC to Hair Metal to classic Stones rock to modern rock. And it sounds great at bedroom levels as well. I don't know how or why, it just does.

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5.0

Awesome Friggin Amp for the price

By Ant-siqak

from Louisiana

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

I've been playing through a Randall Head, with a peavey 5150 cab with sheffields. this amp for its price is well beyond worth the money..i found this amp at a music store in Lafayette louisiana and my God, the sound she had...i'm so glad i made this purchase. and has plenty of distortion for my style of music.. hard rock/metal.

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(0 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Poorman's Soldano

Comments about Jet City Amplification JCA50H 50W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

This is a great amp stock- BLOWS AWAY others in this price range and some costing way more for clarity and TONE. Strum a chord on the gain channel and there's no fluctuation or warbling like you get with other brands. I have a Decatone, and this is 2/3 of the way there for tone with a few mods. You get a lot of bang for your buck here. Change the shrill tubes for warmer tone, a few minor tweaks or go all the way with major mods- it's a great platform for getting CLOSE to the Soldano sound with a few mods- change a few capacitors, add a depth knob, upgrade the tubes, even if you change out the chinese trannys for mercury ones, you are still only halfway to the price of a comparable sounding amp at that point! Great value, and the amp modders and tinkerers are going to love it. I have already heard of some Pros using these on tour. PLENTY of volume at 50 watts, too! Can't imagine how loud the 100 must be. My bandmate can finally stop embarrassing my Decatone with his inferior tone he had with his valve queen!

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