www.premierguitar.com PREMIER GUITAR NOVEMBER 2009 159
Some people skirt convention, developing
a fresh take on what it means to create an
amp. If you’re an acoustic player, the Acoustic
Image Ten2 combo requires a stretch of the
imagination just to fathom the path taken in
its design. Picture a combo that’s equally at
home with string bass, acoustic guitar, hollowbody jazz guitar, keyboards, vocals, and a
whole gamut of other string instruments.
But what if this amp we’re imagining had
two 10" speakers and a tweeter, measured
only 17" high and weighed just 28 pounds?
What if this amp pushed eight ... hundred ...
watts of power into a little round box—about
the same height and weight as a Princeton
Reverb amp, except with 67 times as much
power—and provided full-range sound from
30 Hz to 20kHz?
That’s just the beginning of what Acoustic
Image came up with in the fourth generation
of its compact, high-powered acoustic amp,
this time called the Ten2. Here are two takes
on this rig, first through the eyes of a guitarist
(that’s Bob), and then from a bassist’s vantage
point (from Dan).
A Guitar Player’s Perspective
By Bob Goffstein
Just as the Acoustic Image (AI) name and
philosophy has legendary status among bass
players, the Ten2 breaks new ground in versatility by being very suitable for the guitarist
and vocalist as well. The core of its increased
versatility begins with a true two-channel
amp, with features that provide sonic and signal routing solutions like no other guitar amp.
I like to think of it as the hand grenade of
amps, though its round little body, especially
with its tilt-back legs deployed, also speaks
to me of my favorite Star Wars robot, R2D2.
Versatility starts at the beginning of the signal
chain: the inputs. Each of the two inputs utilizes
a 1/4" XLR combo jack. The XLR portion presents 600-ohm impedance and 47 volts of phantom power, ideal for both dynamic and condenser mics. The 1/4" input shows 1 megohm
of impedance, optimal for piezo pickup outputs
without the need for a separate preamp.
Guitarists will note the absence of channel
switching, which is no big loss since the amp is
really not designed for rhythm/lead rock/blues
work. Its class-D power amp and solid-state
preamp are just too clean. With an SPL of 93dB
at one watt, the Ten2’s other 799 watts provide
FROM BOTH A GUITAR AND BASS PERSPECTIVE
BY DAN BERKOWITZ AND BOB GOFFSTEIN