Gibson GA-40T “Les Paul” amp 1955-1957

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About This Listing

Vintage Gibson GA-40T “Les Paul” amp, manufactured sometime in 1955 - 1957   14-15 Watts    Everything works

Single 12' loudspeaker Pair of 6V6 output tubes The loudspeaker is original (Rola 1955) as is the output transformer (always a good thing).  Everything appears to be original (back cover replaced).

This is a 2-channel amp, with two jacks per each input. Each channel has its own Volume Control.

This is not really a collector piece as its tolex/leatherette covering is weathered.  

It tends to shine the most when one needs a deep, throaty bluesy tone. This amp definitely has the “Mojo”. It breaks up beautifully at mid-volumes and as you push it harder it just gets sweeter and displays more of its unique character. A splendid, exceptionally-toneful piece that sounds amazing

Seth Lover designed the tremolo circuit, which utilises an octal 6SQ7 triode.

More unusual still are the 5879 pentodes at the front of both channels, coupled with a 12AX7 phase inverter that’s configured like the earliest Fender Deluxes. In fact, some claim that Fender copied the Gibson circuits for their Fender Deluxe (Gibson was making amps for more than 10 years before Fender. Gibson amps are not as well-known as Fender simply because Gibson's marketing was essentially non-existent.)

Channel 1’s signal path is very straight-through, but Channel 2’s has a filter network to provide a distinctive voicing and if you compare its circuit with the EF86 channel of a Vox AC10 or AC15, the extreme similarity between these amps may surprise you (I have a 1964 AC15 also).

Channel 1 is fatter, deeper and more “gainy”. In contrast, Channel 2 has rolled off bass with a hint of extra in the mids and a sense of extra brightness and jangle (without actually sounding clearer). Putting it very simply, it’s like having a Vox front end driving an early 50s Tweed phase-inverter and power stage through a classic American speaker (if that makes sense).

The warm and woody ‘dark sparkle’ associated with these amps allows any guitar’s natural tone to come through without any harshness

It’s a harmonically-rich, smooth and gorgeous distortion –not that classic “rock ’n’ roll” crunch. (Like Fender’s brighter and more raucous offerings)

More reminiscent of the modern boutique amp tone

An affordable treasure.


DESCRIPTION Cathode-biased combo amplifier. Made in the USA
BUILD 2-channel, hand-wired valve combo with tremolo
VALVES 2x 5879, 2x 6V6, 1x 5Y3
CONTROL PANEL 4x input jacks, volume, volume, frequency, depth, treble/bass, power switch
SPEAKER 1x vintage Jensen P12Q 8-ohm
WEIGHT 32.84 lb/14.9kg

Note: I have an electrical schematic available

This item is sold As-Described

This item is sold As-Described and cannot be returned unless it arrives in a condition different from how it was described or photographed. Items must be returned in original, as-shipped condition with all original packaging.

Product Specs

Listeda year ago
ConditionFair (Used)
Fair condition gear should function but will show noticeable cosmetic damage or other issues.learn more
Made In
  • United States
Speaker Configuration

Reviews of this Shop

83% positive

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