NAD (well it's coming...) OCTAL tube goodness Harmony 8418 Reissue

Discussion in 'Ampage Area' started by ruger9, Nov 14, 2019.

  1. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    The most-affordable old-school/octal tube amp to yet come down the pike...

    The Harmony 8418 reissue. 5W, 6SJ7, 6V6, 5Y3, handwired, Jensen alnico, and half the cost of a Vintage 47 (not saying Vintage 47's are overpriced, just that this Harmony is HALF the price).

    I do wish they would have demo'ed a P90 archtop through it tho, idiots....

    [​IMG]

    https://www.harmony.co/pages/8418


    I had a little Champion 600 Reissue, and tried to get it more old-school sounding... I modded the circuit, put in a Vintage 47 alnico speaker.... it just never "got there"... I think the tiny cabinet was holding it back maybe (and of course it's 12A_7 preamp type).... This new Harmony looks to have all the things I wanted out of the C600 but could never get.
     
    T Bone, S.R.Cash, Outlaw and 6 others like this.
  2. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Congrats man, that looks like a lot of fun. Under 400 bucks... that is simply amazing.
     
    ruger9 and Lionpotato like this.
  3. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    buy a Vintage 47 or a DeLisle amp (the best hand made amp in the states), this is made offshore and worse it has a jensen speaker. if you want a real vintage jensen, buy a weber. Selling a national amp, with labor offshore to undercut fellow national hand built amp manufacturers is ________
     
    southpaw185 and nickurso like this.
  4. Lionpotato

    Lionpotato Gretschie

    422
    Oct 10, 2018
    Upland
    Wow! Point to point hand wiring! Sounds incredible. Please follow up with your thoughts.
     
    ruger9 likes this.
  5. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    Well, it's a hair north of 450 with shipping and tax, but still...

    Yeah, I would have expected PCB construction.... I do notice the back panel looks like cardboard lol.... no clue what the cab is. But for me this is just for home use, just a classy looking little amp for old-school tones at home, I'm not gigging with it or anything, so durability isn't a concern (altho as for the durability of the circuit, it is handwired...)

    Haven't heard great things about the Italian Jensens, but the video demo sounds good. Maybe I'll drop something else in there someday, if I feel it needs it. I can tell from the demo it already sounds miles better than the Fender Champion 600 did.

    Tavo, I get that you'd be bent... your Moonshine 39 is a top-notch Cadillac piece of gear, as is the Vintage 47 stuff. I don't NEED that for a cheap little home amp for fun. If I were Tommy Harkenrider or Johnathan Stout, I'd be giving you a call.... but I'm not them. I don't need a pro piece of gear for my usage on this one. Heck, if the little C600 had sounded good, I would have kept it. It's nice to be able to get some octal goodness without breaking the bank.

    BTW... aren't most of the Gretsch guitars made.... "offshore"? ;)
     
    toddfan, drmilktruck, pmac11 and 3 others like this.
  6. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    The web speak says “Handwired in Singapore”. That is not a particularly cheap SE-Asian location. Nick and the guys at Ceriatone?
     
    Lionpotato and ruger9 like this.
  7. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    Not bent amigo... My comments dont have any "nocturne" filter in them. I make 10% gross profit on MY amps (in pocket about 6% after I install speakers tubes and handles, burn in and ship..... its just a passion that my pedal biz allows me to create)

    But my buddy; Jer DeLisle (mugsy on this forum) who takes my designs and manufactures everything on them except the mercury mag transformers and weber/tonetubby speakers (also national built small biz) makes his living in the midwest for his fam, building amps.
    So.. what you are hearing from me in these comments is full hearted for my friends and fellow self employed folks. Plus it puts their names in the google bot crawl.

    ps. tommy and jonathan use my pedals, not my amps.
     
  8. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    Florida
    Nice. Give us a quality and tone report.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2019
    ruger9 likes this.
  9. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    Won't be here until thursday [​IMG]

    I got the shipping notice, it's coming from California.... not Kalamazoo, which is where the company is located. Right off the boat? LOL
     
  10. S.R.Cash

    S.R.Cash Gretschie

    173
    Aug 29, 2019
    Ontario, Canada
    I have wanted something like this for a long time! Congrats!! Closest I'll ever get to that Luther Vibe! ... Well, I guess I'll need an Esquire too!
     
  11. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Handwired in Singapore, cab and assembly in Cali?
     
    ruger9 likes this.
  12. wildeman

    wildeman Gretschified

    May 10, 2015
    norcal
    Cardboard is found in most vintage Harmony amps...and some guitars!
    Danelectro's are famously made of cheeze board.
     
    Lionpotato and ruger9 like this.
  13. T Bone

    T Bone Country Gent

    Looks cool, and a great value. Hope it gives you the sound you're looking for, guessing your chances are good.

    As for the cabinet, the website says plywood. At that price point, I wouldn't expect finger jointed pine. In fact surprised it's not particle board. Lots of good things are made of plywood. Even Gretsch hollow bodies. Of course there's plywood, and then there's plywood. I suspect you'll be pretty pleased with it.
     
  14. pmac11

    pmac11 Country Gent

    Age:
    55
    Mar 4, 2018
    Toronto, Ontario
    If you're thinking of a speaker swap, I only have good things to say about the Celestion A Type and the WGS G12C.

    Sent from my SM-T560NU using Tapatalk
     
  15. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    It's here.

    Very quick review:

    It definitely has that old-school tone I have heard out of amps like Vintage 47, where they are going for that old amp thing. IDK if that's the 6SJ7 specifically, or the circuit, but it does not, for example, sound like the Champion 600 Reissue.

    It does not get dirty... in the demo video, Andy is pushing it with clean boost to get those tones. This amp, by itself, is capable of no more than what I would call "Charlie Christian breakup"... which is fine with me, that's what I'm after. The Champion 600 Reissue got MUCH dirtier... you had to put a 12AU7 in it to get it down to the clean levels this Harmony 8418 is putting out.

    It has to be up at 7 or higher to do this (10 is best). And at 10....

    1) it hums. This is not abnormal, every tube amp I own, when cranked, hums. It's the nature of the beast. It hums less as you turn the volume down, which is of course normal. The Champion 600 hummed. My Bad Cat hums. My Supersonics both hum.

    2) even on 10, it's not loud. At all. Nowhere near as loud as the demo makes it out to be. This is TRULY a "home amp"... even on 10, you won't be disturbing anyone. Which-again- is OK with me... that's MY purpose for this amp: old-school tones at home volumes. Actually, anything below 5 on the dial is so quiet it's not even usable for me... no idea if the original ones were this quiet...?
    [interestingly, the Champion 600 Reissue: out of the box, with it's 12AX7 and Fender tone stack, was much louder and dirtier and brighter. But I disabled the tone stack for more mids, put a V47 hemp cone in for darker tone, and a 12AU7 in for cleaner tone.... and that MODDED C600 did sound a lot like this Harmony, in both volume (lack of) and tone.]

    I only wish I had a proper P90 archtop to play through it, that would be the ultimate test for me. I have a tele, a P90 thinline tele, and my Grestch with Filtertrons. Oh- that's another observation: this amp is not capable of that "Gretsch sparkly" sound... at least not with Filtertrons... the high end is simply not available.

    If you have any questions, fire away. But I'll say that for old-school tones, at low volumes for home use, and cool looks to boot, they done good.

    OH- and there doesn't appear to be a HI and LO input like we are used to; both inputs are the same. As if to plug 2 instruments into the same amp... I assume the originals were like this as well.
     
  16. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    Florida
    Thanks for the review.
     
  17. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    quick addendum:

    I put a Spark Booster in front of it, and was able to achieve more blackface-y/Gretschy tones (the full-size Spark Booster is an EQ as well as a booster). I guess this is the reverse of say, putting a Junior Barnyard in front of a PRRI.
     
  18. Ricochet

    Ricochet I Bleed Orange

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Tnx for the review. So, you keeping it? :D
     
  19. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    NJ
    IDK yet. I really wish I had an ES-125 or Loar 309 or Godin Kingpin P90 to try with it...

    I'll say this: it's everything I WANTED the Champion 600 to be, and modded heavily to be. If a quiet home amp that produces old-school Charlie Christian type tones is what somebody's after, this is the amp.
     
    MKunie and Ricochet like this.
  20. TV the Wired Turtle

    TV the Wired Turtle Gretschified

    Jul 25, 2009
    so cal
    biggest ports of call for asian imports in the nation are on the west coast: long beach, los angeles, seattle, tacoma.
     
    T Bone likes this.
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