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Brand New w/ Warranty. We are an authorized Magnatone dealer!
The Starlite joins the Magnatone Traditional line-up as a much-requested low-power amp perfect for backstage, studio, bedroom, or office. With Classic American tones and Vintage style, the Starlite will quickly rival anything in the small amp category.
What Do We Think?
The Starlite is an amp with features and tone that surpass its unassumingly small enclosure. As Magnatone touts it, it covers a range of American voices from Tweed to Blackface by utilizing a special tone circuit to cut or boost the mids throughout the journey. But we also found a few additional gems along the way.
Let’s start with the signature Blackface scoop, that delicious smiley-face EQ that has possibly become the prevailing metric of all the Fender voicings. Dial the tone knob all the way back, harnessing the unique mid-cut feature of the knob to its fullest. Plugged in through input 2, you get the perfect warmth in the bottom to balance the cut and sparkle on the top.
Rolling the tone knob up through the 9 or 10 o’clock range transports you a few years earlier in the Fender lineage; think the transitional Brownface midrange. The tone is not as unruly as a Tweed, but it has more color and saturation than your typical Blackface fare. Input 1 will give you a bit more oomph and top end when dialing in these more saturated tones, but the choice is yours.
Tone knob to noon and above pushes you into Tweed territory. The amp stays marvelously “taught” on the bottom, but you get the fabulous midrange breakup and touch-sensitive response that you associate with the 5E3 circuit. And continuing the push of the tone past 2 or 3 o’clock, we hear more Supro-inspired Class A tones with their raw breakup and spongier feel.
Recap… rolling the tone knob up does not increase the trebles as it would on a traditional tone knob. But you’re not left in a lurch. Disengaging the negative feedback loop excites the top end of the amp, stepping us into new tonal footprints even while it adds a little bump to the gain structure. Through input 2, disengaging the negative feedback loop has the effect of placing a clean boost or harmonic booster in front of the amp, drawing special attention to the Starlite’s rich dynamic range and vibrant upper register.
And perhaps the surprise of all surprises, switching to input 1 and playing with the relation between the volume and tone knobs bring you into Marshall stack territory. Who knew?! We happen to think the sweet spot lies with the tone at 10 o’clock and the volume anywhere from noon on up. You’ll find everything from the rhythm crunch of a JTM45 to the rich push of a JMP50 and beyond.
Wanting to move a little more air? The Starlite features an extra 8ohm output for powering an extension cab. As for speaker choice, the amp sounds darn good through the WGS G12C/S that Magnatone uses in their T-112 cab. Contact us for bundle pricing!
TUBE COMPLEMENT: (1) 12AX7, (1) 6V6
POWER OUTPUT: 5 watts, Class A
TONE: Tone control covers both Black panel and Tweed era amps with a unique designed mid-cut below 12 O’clock
SPEAKER: Magnatone Custom 8" Ceramic Magnet, Made by WGS in the USA
COMBO DIMENTIONS: 17" x 8" x 12"
COMBO WEIGHTS: 19 lbs.