52 Amplifier Heads, week 7—Orange Signature #4 Jim Root Terror Head

I’ll be honest. As I continue with this weekly article series, I increase my knowledge of tube amplifiers. Some amplifier heads have tube preamps. Some have tube poweramps. Some have both. Amplifier heads like the Orange Signature #4 Jim Root Head have tubes for the poweramp, preamp and the FX loop. That alone makes me want this head!

If I understand the specifications correctly, this 15 watt head contains six tubes. Impressive. But not as impressive as the amp sounds. Guitar World Magazine did a very thorough video review of the Signature #4 Jim Root head. While I really like the sound of the clean tones (thick and rich) it’s the overdriven tone I like the most. Dialing the gain up and down gives quite a bit of variation to the overdrive. The equalisation seems to work well with the tone as well. I’ve little doubt you could create quite a few high quality overdriven tones with this head.

Having mentioned that, surely this opinion needs to be backed up with proof. Something more than wishes and desires. This article wouldn’t be the same without a proper list of specifications. So …

  • Rockerverb tone stack
  • Controls for volume, bass, middle, treble and gain
  • 15 watts and 7 watts
  • Poweramp (2 x EL84 tubes)
  • Preamp (3 x Ecc83/12ax7 tubes)
  • FX Loop (1 x Ecc81/12ax7 tube)
  • 8 ohm and 16 ohm speaker outputs

I am once again blown away by the six tube setup. That’s very cool. And in such a small package! This amplifier sounds like it’s been put together with passion and respect for tone while still somehow making it affordable to what I call real world guitarists (I’ve seen it regularly under $800 here in Australia). Hey I’m a real world guitarist! This could be the amp I try to acquire this year! Until then, I’ll continue to watch top quality video reviews like this one from Rob Chapman. And dream. I’ll dream for a bit …

Disclaimer: I’ve not played through this head. I have not experienced the sound or tone of this head other than through video. That doesn’t matter. It looks awesome, it’s obviously played by winners and I want one.

Orange Signature #4 Jim Root Terror Head
Orange Signature #4 Jim Root Terror Head
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