Brown Note Amplifiers
Deluxe, Fender Super Champ, Fender 6G9
Tremolux, Fender 6G11 Vibrolux, Magnatone
421, Magnatone 460, Marshall Super Bass
100, Masco MA- 25, Selmer Zodiac Twin 30,
and the Trainwreck Rocket.
Where do you stand on the point-to-point
versus printed circuit board debate?
I’m not a real Nazi about that stuff. If you do
it right, straight point-to-point can be really
awesome, but I have nothing against printed
circuit boards. We use everything—
point-to-point, tag board layout, turret boards, eyelet
boards, and PCB boards. What we do with
the PCB board—and this makes all the difference—is use a board that is 1/8" thick.
It’s completely rigid and has the tracers and
circuitry basically embedded in it. And on top
of that, it has the eyelet, so you have a really
solid anchor for the components to attach to.
That’s just bulletproof.
You have an exciting product in the
works. Care to divulge?
We were working with Pete Anderson, and
we got an amp really dialed in to his exact
taste. However, because he has used a Line
6 POD through a tube power amp for years,
If you do it
ing can be really
I have nothing
he wants some programmability. To get from
one sound to another on his Brown Note amp
requires tweaking it again and resetting the
controls. So we came up with a way to make
the amp programmable to the extent that you
can change settings with a single foot stomp.
It’s something we can use in other amps too.
Would you ever consider including digital
technology in your amps?
My personal preference is to have an all-analog signal path, although I did use a
digital delay on my last gig and it was fine
[laughs]. My teenage son is an electronics
and computer whiz, and he helps out with
the amps. When he was a kid, he got the
Radio Shack kit, too. He always has these
cool ideas. I used to say, “Nah, too high
tech.” But now I’m like, “Hey, let’s talk
about some of this stuff.”
Will digital technology render tube
I wonder about that myself. I don’t know.
What does the future hold for Brown Note?
I really want to grow the business organically. I don’t want to be the next Marshall or
Fender or Vox. It’s hard to work on a business when you’re in a business. Right now, it
would probably be good to go into survival
products—dried fruits and crank radios.
A glimpse inside the Brown Note shop in Fair Oaks, California.