With an output power rating of 5 Watts, this amp creates plenty of sound for use in the studio or at home, but the Epiphone Valve Junior Hot Rod also comes equipped with speaker outputs of 4, 8, or 16 Ohms so it can be plugged into a bigger cabinet. The power amp is one EL84 tube and the pre amp is two 12AX7A tubes, creating a classic sound. It uses a 100% all tube signal and acoustic spring elements to produce reverb, giving it the kind of authentic sound usually only found on much more expensive boutique models.
The Epiphone Valve Junior Hot Rod 5W Tube Guitar Amp Head was developed by renowned international guitar-maker Epiphone as an expansion on their popular Valve Junior that offers users a greater range of features and functions.
Here's a nice comprehension video review of this amp head complimentary of the guys over at The Tone King:
Expanding on the features available on the original Valve Junior, the Hot Rod has added standby, master volume, gain and reverb controls. It can also be used as a stand-alone reverb tank. Standalone acoustic reverb tanks usually cost much more than the list price for the Hot Rod, which also obviously functions as an amp, making it an incredible bargain.
The sound produced by the Junior Hot Rod is unparalleled by similarly-priced models. The tube construction gives it a vintage, boutique tone that cannot be replicated on digital amplifiers. The sound comes through especially well in smaller, more intimate settings such as the studio, rehearsals, at home, or at smaller gigs, but the Hot Rod can also be plugged into a bigger cabinet to add some power behind this smooth, warm tone.
Not only does the Hot Rod sound fantastic, its vintage look adds to its charm and appeal. The front of the amp seems inspired by the interiors of the classic Hot Rods it was named after, with a rich red leather panel and cream details. Even the fonts seem to have been chosen to give a retro feel, combined with a totally utilitarian design. Also, its small size of 10x14.25x8.5 makes it highly portable, perfect for use both in home and on stage.
With the Valve Junior Hot Rod, Epiphone has managed to make an amp that's definitely worth more than its price. Although it may not pack as much sonic punch as bigger models, its high-end boutique sound, use of quality acoustic materials, its vintage look, as well as its functionality as a reverb tank make it a worthwhile addition to any set-up.