Fender Tremolux Model 5E9-A Tube Amplifier (1957)

Fender  Tremolux Model 5E9-A Tube Amplifier (1957)
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Item # 9680
Prices subject to change without notice.
Fender Tremolux Model 5E9-A Model Tube Amplifier (1957), made in Fullerton, California, serial # 01317, tweed fabric covering finish.
Height is 20 in. (50.8 cm.), 22 in. (55.9 cm.) width, and 10 1/2 in. (26.7 cm.) in depth at deepest point.

This late 1957 example of the narrow-panel tweed Tremolux is one of Fender's classic period amps, being among the rarest and most sought-after bigger-box Tweeds today. Originally introduced in 1955 alongside its smaller cousin the Vibrolux, the two amps pioneered the company's first built-in tremolo effect. The initial 5E9 circuit was basically a 5E3 Deluxe with the added on-board effect and a taller cabinet. The '57 5E9-A was outfitted with a 5U4 rectifier, a paraphase phase inverter and a little more power; rated at 18 watts.

Just a bit louder than the standard Deluxe, the late '50s Tremolux is the perfect amp for those gigs when the smaller tweeds just don't quite have the power to cut it. The larger box also gives a bit more breadth, letting the bass-response develop more, avoiding the boomy flub sometimes associated with the smaller Deluxe cabinets. The tremolo is lush and deep and has an impressively wide range due to the trem circuit modulating the phase inverter bias, effectively making the effect consistent regardless of the volume setting.

This example has a tube chart code dating to October 1957. The model is listed as 5E9 with "A" added in pen; Fender never wasted anything, even paper labels! The original Jensen P12Q speaker is coded to the 11th week of 1956 (220-611), so must have sat in stock for some time. It has been professionally reconed and is ready for many years of use. The power transformer is the original 8160 Triad and the output transformer is the original 50246 Triad (a cousin of the 108 Triad) as well. The fuse holder looks like an old replacement, apart from which the amp is completely original. The chassis tape marking indicates this one was wired up by none other than Lily, who was also the queen of the Harvards; we love her work!

The amp sports a great set of NOS RCA tubes; 2x 6V6, 2x 12AX7 and 1x 12AY7 and a NOS Raytheon 5U4GB rectifier. It has also been given our typical servicing, which includes replacement of all electrolytic caps, cleaning of all sockets, pots and jacks and biasing to spec, a grounded three-prong power cord, removal of line-to-ground capacitor (aka. death cap) as well as thorough testing. The circuit is original and no alterations have been made other than standard maintenance to ensure reliable operation for many years to come.

The tweed cabinet is fairly worn with typical fraying at the edges, and has a larger stain on top, presumably from a wax candle, as well as a handful of cigarette burns. The faceplate is comparatively clean with minimal-to-no scratches or corrosion with all the lettering intact as well.

This amp may be well-worn externally but sounds truly phenomenal and is our favorite tweed in the shop currently. It looks to have had a colorful life already and will be an outstanding musical companion for another few decades, at least! Very Good + Condition.