Supro Thunderbolt Plus

AndyJPAndyJP Frets: 152
edited August 14 in Amp Reviews
Here's my thoughts on the resissue Supro Thunderbolt plus which I've had for about 18 months. Hope it's useful for somebody.

Here's a video clip of me playing the amp.  It's set totally clean and I'm using a Gibson ES349, a RYRA Klone (set as a clean boost), A TC Hof mini and a Mad Professor Deep Blue Delay.   Plugged into the low input of the amp and have it set to 60 watts.  There's no hair on the pedal.  Hey, I'm into Blues.


I was looking for an amp with clean headroom and dynamics for band use. I'd never previously considered Supro because I'd always associated the brand with a knarly overdriven sound a la Communication Breakdown.  But... I stumbled across this amp and it turned out to be exactly what I needed.   Through luck more than anything else.

This video review from guitar interactive convinced me it might be worth a shot. 

In Use:

I initially used this amp with single coils.  But when I switched to Gibson guitars with low output PAF style pickups this amp really came to life.  It's responsive to your playing, and there really is no place to hide.  It'll highlight all your flaws and mistakes.  At bedroom volumes it'll stay clean whichever wattage you set it to.  But in a band setting the 35 watt setting will give you a little hair.   I've been using the 60 watt setting for full headroom and get different sounds from my pedals.  To me it's a little Fender scooped sounding with a bit of Vox.thrown in.  The bass is pretty big.

It works great with pedals but I've tried to avoid pedal that add bass. So have gone for tuescreamer ish pedals that add mids.   My favs have been Zendrive, Ryra Klone and Providence SOV2.


Build Quality:

I don't have any electronics experience to draw upon. But I can tell you is it's been very reliable. I think peoples main gripe with Supro is that they are expensive for when buying new.  Because it has some less desirable build features, tubes mounted directly to the board etc. But you can pick this amp up for £600 second hand. So second hand they are good    I had one issue with the wattage switch when I first got it. It needed to be replaced. Since that I've not had any issues.   

Conclusion:

I've had this amp about 18 months.  If you want a really great clean platform that stays clean loud and responds to your technique, this is a great choice.  And it looks sexy as £$%^ !

Features: Combo
  • High and low inputs,
  • 2 Controls volume and tone,
  • Switch between 60, 45 or 35 watts.
  • 60 watts setting gives you a solid state rectifier and class a/b 
  • 45 watts gives you the tube rectifier and class a/b
  • 35 watts gives you tube rectifier and class a
  • Big transformer, 
  • 2 6l6 tubes, 
  • 15" speaker. Currently a Celestion fullback.  wow.
  • Angled baffle and open back
Positives: 
  • Great tone that stays clean at band volume.
  • Consistant sound, always seems to sound good.
  • Good at bedroom and band volumes.
  • Simple to use with 2 controls.
  • Looks beautiful.
  • Reliable
   
Negatives: 
  • Heavy-ish. About 24kg with the Celestion Fullback.
  • The Wattage switch needed to be replaced by @ICBM ;;;;
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