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Overview

Resurrecting a lost classic, the JHS Twin Twelve pays homage to the legendary Silvertone 1484 Twin Twelve amp by packing the character of its tone and saturation into a four-knob pedal. Why spend $1500 and lug a two-piece amp around when you can use the amp you have to get that same Silvertone sound?

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Product Specs

Brand
Model
  • Twin Twelve
Finish
  • Grey
Year
  • 2010s
Made In
  • United States
Categories

From the Price Guide

More Information

The JHS Twin Twelve is the first effects pedal to go after the sound of the short-lived but revered Silvertone 1484 Twin Twelve. Available through the Sears catalog from 1963 - 1967, the Twin Twelve was not regarded in its day as a premier amplifier. However, modern players looking for a vintage sound have increasingly turned towards this Silvertone as a primary stage and recording amp. Artists such as Beck, Death Cab For Cutie, Vampire Weekend, The White Stripes and even Coldplay have used the Twin Twelve amp on stage, making it the vintage amp with the most indie-cred. With the market for original specimens drying up and prices increasing, JHS has come to the rescue by putting that sound in an easy-to-use pedal.

What made the original Silvertone 1484 so good?

The original was a 60 watt, all-tube head with a separate 2x12 cabinet. At the heart of its sound was a Baxandall tone circuit, powered by a pre-amp the broke up in a way that few other amps do. It wasn't as glassy or snappy as a Fender Tweed, or as treble-rich as a Vox from that period. Rather than going into harmonic crunch like a dimed Marshall, the Silvertone 1484 would get borderline fuzzy, with a very saturated and thick natural overdrive. Its satisfying clean-ish grit and woolly overdrive have become a defining sound in modern indie rock.

How does the JHS Twin Twelve specifically capture this sound and avoid being just another overdrive?

Part of the magic is in the charge pump, which ramps up the standard 9V power it takes to 18V, giving the Twin Twelve pedal even more headroom and punch. The Twin Twelve then uses a series of discrete transistors that mimic the valve stages of the original Silvertone. Bass and treble controls remain true to the ratios of the original amp, while separate Gain and master Volume knobs help you achieve the thick, high-gain saturation at low volumes that was only possible by diming the amp back in the '60s.

Will the character of my guitar still come through?

To some degree, but keep in mind that this is not a transparent overdrive. Its purpose is to transform your amp into something it is not. In addition to this, it will change the way your entire signal chain responds when placed first in line, as if your pedals were going through another amp entirely. You can use it as an "always on" boost, but it won't necessarily be a clean boost. You could also leave it off most of the time and just use it for strategically timed moments of lung-shaking rock during an otherwise tame song.