Photo Page 15

Rarities, Oddities, and One-Offs

SL 300+ Slave

Sound City X188

Impact by Status Model 1017, 120-Watt Amp

100-Watt German Sound City Head(?)

Concord Head

"sound city" Solid-State Combos (by Vermona)

Customized Sound City 120 and Custom-Built 2x12 Cab
This link shows some very clever one-off cosmetic work on a Sound City 120 Mark 4, which is matched quite well with a custom-built 2x12 cab.

100 PA Mark 3 (Modified)

1.1: SL 300+ Front View
~200-plus watts from, presumably, four KT88s, late Dallas Arbiter era, black "basketweave" Tolex, silver vein, silver metal trim, and small embossed silver-on-black plastic
logo badge. "SL" stands for "slave," which means this is a power amp with no tone controls and only one volume control. Same amp case and chassis used for 200 Plus. I'd say this thing is stupidly rare as I've only heard of two people who have them.   Photos Home Page

1.2: SL 300+ Chassis Top View
Looks very much like (if not identical to) the chassis used for the L/B200 Mark 3 and 200 Plus Mark 4. Note the Partridge transformers and (possibly) Partridge choke.
   Photos Home Page

1.3: SL 300+ Chassis Interior View
Layout is very similar to the layout of the L/B200 and 200 Plus, although much more sparce and with no preamp circuitry.
 There also might be some capacitors missing from this example.  Photos Home Page

2.1: SL 300+ Front View w/ Plastic Cover
~200-plus watts from, presumably, four KT88s, DMI era, black "basketweave" Tolex, silver vein, silver metal trim
. This example is ridiculously clean as you'll see in the photos to follow! If it's been used at all, it doesn't show it one bit; it even has its original plastic cover!   Photos Home Page

2.2: SL 300+ Front View w/o Plastic Cover
A pristine machine!   Photos Home Page

2.3: SL 300+ Rear View w/ Rear Panel
Note the similarities to the Mark 4 200 Plus and that the Reverb In/Out jack openings and the Sensitivity switch opening have grommets in them.   Photos Home Page

2.4: SL 300+ Rear View w/o Rear Panel   Photos Home Page

2.5: SL 300+ Chassis Front Exterior View
Although no schematic is available to verify this, the two tubes shown here are probably one ECC83 (12AX7) for the Volume control and another ECC83 or an ECC81 (12AT7) for the phase inverter circuitry.   Photos Home Page

2.6: SL 300+ Chassis Top Exterior View
Yup... definitely a Partridge choke (lower left), just like in the Mark 4 200 Plus. And, naturally, Partridge power and output transformers, although the Partridge output transformer (right) might have been replaced at some point, but there's no way to verify this.   Photos Home Page

2.7: SL 300+ Chassis Rear Exterior View   Photos Home Page

2.8: SL 300+ Output Tube Closeup View
Four Svetlana 6550s, I think. The original tubes would probably have been four General Electric Company (GEC) or Genelex KT88s. Note also the Dallas Music Industries (DMI) serial number label, which dates this amp from ~1974 to ~1978.   Photos Home Page

2.9: SL 300+ Chassis Interior View
Note how this chassis's interior differs from that shown in Photo 1.3 above; it would seem some of that 300+'s capacitors are missing. Also note the definite lack of preamp circuitry that you would otherwise expect to find in the Mark 4 200 Plus. All in all, an amazingly clean example of a very rare Sound City power amplifier.   Photos Home Page

2.10: SL 300+ Chassis Interior Front View
Note the holes in the front of the chassis, which provide conclusive evidence that the SL 300+ is based on the Mark 4 200 Plus chassis.   Photos Home Page

1.1: Sound City X188 Amplifier, Partial Front View
First of all, please accept my apologies for these X188 photos. I greatly appreciated having received these photos, and because beggars can't be choosers, I gratefully offer them here; however, some of them are either blurry or limited in scope.
This said, not much is known about the X188 model, but here is what little I do know.

The X188 was a Dallas Music Industries(DMI)-era amplifier that appears to have used the same chassis layout and transformers as the DMI-era Bass 150 head. According to one DMI price list brochure I have, the X188 was classified by DMI as a "bass amp", although this is strange because this means DMI offered three bass heads that each used four KT88s: the X188, the Bass 150, and the B200 Plus. Perhaps DMI felt the three preamps differed enough to justify such a marketing scheme. At any rate, the X188 offered tone controls similar to the Bass 150 and the L150. The example shown here appears to be very clean.   Photos Home Page

1.2: Sound City X188 Amplifier, Control View
Note the "Equalizers," which seem similar to the quasi-parametric equalizers on the Bass 150 and L150. Also note the "Harmonic Volume" control, which is perhaps similar in intent (if not in execution) to the Bass 150's "Overtone" control.   Photos Home Page

1.3: Sound City X188 Output Tubes
Like the Bass 150, the X188 probably used four KT88s as its stock output tubes. (Apologies for the blurriness of this photo.)   Photos Home Page

1.4: Sound City X188 Preamp Tubes
Identical, again, to the Bass 150's complement of three tubes (two ECC83s [12AX7s], far left and center, and one ECC81 [12AT7] as the PI tube on the right).   Photos Home Page

1.5: Sound City X188 Transformer
Not wanting to seem repetitious, but this transformer (and assumedly, the other transformer) is identical to the Bass 150's transformers.   Photos Home Page

1.6: Sound City X188 Chassis Interior View   Photos Home Page

1.7: Sound City X188 Serial Number Label
As is typical of Sound City's serial numbering, this one gives no clues as to when this amp was made; although, the "7" might indicate 1977, which would make sense, but which is virtually unverifiable.   Photos Home Page

1.1: Impact by Status Model 1017, Front View
This amp definitely falls into the category of rarity and is shown here because Dallas Arbiter owned Impact Amplification during the 70s. (Current thinking is that DA purchased Impact in 1972 or 1973.) The Impact factory was in London. For more information about the Impact line, go here. This Impact amp is essentially a Sound City 120 (Mark 4) head, with a different cosmetic treatment on the front. (My thanks to Sixten for setting me straight about this product!)    
Photos Home Page

1.2: Impact by Status Model 1017, Rear View, w/o Rear Panel
If there was any doubt about this amp being a Sound City 120, this photo should correct it. Except for "IMPACT by STATUS" on the ID label, everything else about this amp says Sound City 120.
   Photos Home Page

1.3: Impact by Status Model 1017, Chassis Exterior Front View
Again, except for the front panel's bezel, this is a Sound City 120 in every respect. Click here for a chassis exterior front view comparison with a Sound City 120.
    Photos Home Page

1.4: Impact by Status Model 1017, Chassis Interior View
Look here for an internal chassis view comparison with a Sound City 120.   Photos Home Page

1.1: German Sound City 100-Watt Head Front View
So one story about this amp appears to go... in the 70s there was an unofficial German "company," per se, called Sound City. Some people there got together and produced amps by themselves for themselves and for other musicians in the DDR (Eastern Germany) where foreign equipment import was forbidden (remember the Cold War?).

So, this amp might be a German Sound City and, therefore, has no similarities at all to the products of Dallas Arbiter, et al. It seems these amps were Marshall copies, handmade in very small quantities.

I've also been told that the "real" German Sound City stuff was solid-state and had red logos (see "sound city guitar amplifier" and "sound city sc120" below), but I've been unable to verify this. If you might know anything, either way, please contact me.   Photos Home Page

1.2: German Sound City 100-Watt Head Rear View
Again, aside from the two words on the logo, there is nothing at all about this amp that says "Sound City"
in any manner with which we're currently familiar.   Photos Home Page

1.3: German Sound City 100-Watt Chassis Exterior Front View
Hmmm... rather Marshall-esque. Too bad the owner didn't send a photo showing the output tubes. Note the two transformers on the right.  Photos Home Page

1.4: German Sound City 100-Watt Chassis Interior View
This beast definitely has that home-brewed look to it, yes?   Photos Home Page

1.1: Sound City Concord Head Front View
I have found no evidence that indicates the Concord head shown here was a true Sound City offering; instead, it's probable that this is a one-off that began its life as a Concord Combo, which was extensively modified. Note the larger metal logo; the Concord Combos I've seen have had the smaller plastic logo.   Photos Home Page

1.2: Sound City Concord Head Exterior Chassis Rear View
Note the possibly replaced transformer on the left.
   Photos Home Page

1.3: Sound City Concord Head Interior Chassis Rear View   Photos Home Page

1. "sound city guitar amplifier" Solid-State Combo Amp
These fake Sound City amps were made by the German company Vermona.
Note: Please do not send photos of these Vermona-built amps!
Please do not ask for schematics of these amps!    Photos Home Page

2. "sound city sc120" Solid-State Combo Amp
Another example of these strange Vermona-built fake "sound city" amps, but this one has two channels and presumably two speakers.
Note: Please do not send photos of these Vermona-built amps! Please do not ask for schematics of these amps!    Photos Home Page

1.1: Sound City 100 PA Mark 3 Front View
~100 watts from four EL34s. Here is a real oddity, which, according to its owner, has received extensive after-market custom work. Note the brass screws and the anodized Aluminum front panel with its etched lettering. Also note the square (Marshall-style) indicator lamp, rough-Black Tolex, black (instead of chrome) handle ends, plastic corners, different knobs, and gold vein.   Photos Home Page

1.2: Sound City 100 PA Mark 3 Partial Left-Front View
Slightly closer detail of this unusual head.
   Photos Home Page

1.3: Sound City 100 PA Mark 3 Partial Right-Front View
Note the "Custom Build" instead of the more common "Custom Built."
   Photos Home Page

1.4: Sound City 100 PA Mark 3 Rear View
If you didn't know what its front panel looked like, you might think this was a standard Sound City head's rear panel, except for the IEC power-cable receptacle and what appears to be a DIN connector between the power selector and the serial number plate. Both of these items were part of the custom work done to this head.
   Photos Home Page

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