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Digital Subscriptions > The Guitar Magazine > Jan 18 > YELLOWROCK CA35 HEAD

YELLOWROCK CA35 HEAD

Straight outta Guernsey, this head combines two preamp valves with a pentode-emulating solid-state output stage. RICHARD PURVIS puts the hybrid theory to the test

Anyone who’s recently bought a new car, laptop or custombred attack tortoise will know that we are living in the age of the hybrid. But whatever happened to hybrid amplifiers? It’s a sound enough idea – combining real preamp valve distortion with the convenience of a solid-state output stage – but it seems most tonehounds these days are still keeping it all-tube, or going all out in the other direction with digital modelling.

Maybe the hybrid amp world is in need of a new tech breakthrough to convince us it’s still relevant. YellowRock Amps, a small company based in the Channel Islands, thinks it’s made one. The secret of this blue beast is what YellowRock calls APEM: analogue pentode emulation. This claims to bring all the tone, power and feel of real output valves with none of the apparent reliability hassles or added weight. In this case it’s working alongside a pair of JJ ECC83S preamp tubes to churn out 35 Watts, switchable down to eight watts.

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