At the beginning of 2015 Korg, in cooperation with Noritake, introduced a new tube technology called NuTube. Vox employed this technology in previous electric guitar amps and now there are three combos for bass, acoustic guitar and keyboard that use it as well.
VX50BA, VX50AG and VX50KB
The name already shows which amp is for which instrument. BA stands for bass, AG for acoustic guitars and KB for the keyboard version. The three 50-Watt combos are very similar in design and differ only in colour on the front. The real differences are seen on the upward-facing control panels that show the differentiating functions on each model.
All these amps use the same NuTube technology. The aim here is give them a bit more warmth and avoid the lacklustre sound of you sometimes get from regular transistor and digital amps. Well, hopefully it will, as I have never tried any of the NuTube stuff myself and so cannot say for sure exactly what it sounds like. Let us know your experiences with NuTube gear in the comments below.
Vox VX50BA Panel
The VX50BA offers controls for gain, bass, low mid, high mid, treble, master and two sliders to activate Compressor and Overdrive. There are also AUX-In and a headphone out. Like the other amps, the bass version should also weigh less than 4.5 kg, and has an 8″ speaker installed.
Vox VX50AG Panel
The VX50AG has two channels, one for bass (volume, bass, middle, treble, chorus and reverb) and one for volume control, bass, treble, reverb. The guitar input can still be switched in phase and the XLR-In can be supplied with its own phantom power. As with the others inthis series, there’s also an AUX IN and Headphone Out, an 8″ speaker, plus a single tweeter.
Vox VX50KB Panel
This amp gives you get three channels rather than two, each with a line input at line level. Channel 3 can be switched between Line and Mic. Each channel has its own volume control, and channel 3 also has a phase inversion function. The 3-band EQ has bass, middle and treble bands. Then there’s the obligatory Master volume. As on the other models, AUX IN and Headphone Out are also included.
Lightweight and cheap?
This new range could be really handy for those on the move, that require a lightweight amplification system for their instruments. They aren’t exactly game changers, but they do look useful and the price is pretty reasonable for what you get from each model. They are all made out of lightweight, but reasonably strong ABS plastic that should last a lifetime, as ABS is pretty resilient to being knocked about. Though I’m sure it isn’t exactly great for the environment in the long term.
Vox says that each amp has been designed to sound as good as possible, using things like bass reflex structure cabinet design and using coaxial speakers and all that kind of thing. Of course, the proof will be in the pudding, as they say, and so we will have to wait and see what players think when they arrive later this month.
RRP – GBP 259 available September
Vox Amps main page
- Vox VX50BA Top panel view: Vox
- Vox VX50AG Top panel view: Vox
- Vox VX50KB Top panel view: Vox