Gibson EH-150 Tube Amplifier (1940)

Gibson  EH-150 Tube Amplifier (1940)
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Item # 12046
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Gibson EH-150 Model Tube Amplifier (1940), made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, serial # 12802, tweed fabric covering finish.

This is a truly superb example of the world's first great guitar pro-grade amplifier, Gibson's EH-150. These early Gibson amps went through a number of style changes; this is the 1939-40 variant built into a larger slightly arched-top cabinet with rounded upper corners. The gold/brown tweed cabinet cover has orange and black vertical stripes in the center, with a black script Gibson logo in the lower right hand corner. The square lower cabinet edges have leather corners and round hard rubber feet. The front speaker aperture is covered by a black metal grill.

The removable latched back reveals the deco-styled control panel which lays out left-right with an on/off switch, fuse, microphone volume, instruments volume, 1 mic and 2 instrument inputs, and a tone control switch (bass and normal). A push-pull 6L6 power section yields roughly 15 watts of power into a Gibson-branded 12" "Ultrasonic Reproducer" field coil speaker. This was the premier professional amplifier of its day as used by Charlie Christian and a host of other 1940s greats, and is still a wonderful and unique-sounding amp today.
Height is 15 5/8 in. (39.7 cm.), 16 1/4 in. (41.3 cm.) width, and 8 3/8 in. (21.3 cm.) deep.

Cosmetically this 80+ year old amp is beautifully preserved. The Geib-made tweed covered case has an attractive lightly-smoked patina and some visible wear around the corners and a couple scuffs on the front, but far less than most of these for its 8 decades on earth. The handle is fairly worn, but still retains its shape and is still functional; part of the front-left leather end is missing and loose pieces have been thoughtfully glued together.

Electrically, the amp remains all original. The speaker is the original Gibson-branded "Ultrasonic Reproducer" field coil speaker, which still retains its original cone and sounds great. The power, choke, output and interstage transformers are original to the amp, bearing the codes T40069, T40070, T8790, respectively, with the latter just a visible date stamp of Jan 31 1940. One of the pots has been replaced as the original Stackpole was beyond repair. The other Stackpole is still present and working. The amp has seen our typical maintenance and servicing, including a grounded 3-prong power cords, all electrolytic capacitors replaced, all sockets, pots and jacks cleaned and biased to spec.

This amp is quickly becoming a shop favorite, it is a fantastic sounding example. The EH-150 is a perennially sought-after amplifier by players as well as collectors, with a versatile sound that remains unique many decades since its creation. This is one of the finest we have ever had both sonically and cosmetically. Overall Excellent Condition.