expansiveness, which is perfect for crafting
huge, bassy tones that can fill a room more
easily than dirtier power tubes.
The Tweaker line is, to a certain extent,
about a tweaker-friendly layout, and the 88 has
a pretty straightforward 2-channel layout for
lower- and higher-gain tones. Each has its own
Master Volume control, along with a switch
that flips the power amp’s response from flatter, vintage voicing to a more modern response
with boosts in the highs and lows. Both channels also share a simple 3-band EQ, which
includes a Tweaker amplifier trademark—a
3-way Tone control switch. It engages three,
Even when I had the treble control cranked above the 4
o’clock position, the highs were still surprisingly sweet,
round, and non-abrasive. Flipping the voicing to Modern
kicked in a healthy dose of highs and lows, but not enough
to introduce clashing overtones.
completely different, passive tone-stacks which
range from powerful low-mids (BRIT), sparkly highs and strong lows (USA), and warm,
British smoothness (AC). Each of the channels
can be switched from the amp’s faceplate, or
from the included footswitch.
One of the nicest features of the
Tweaker- 88 is its ability to set separate boost
levels for each channel and change how the
boost affects tone and response. Each channel has its own boost level knob and 3-way
switch that changes the characteristics of the
boost by making it a clean or gain boost,
or switching it out of the circuit altogether.
They can also be conveniently switched in
and out via the amp’s 4-button footswitch.
With a namesake like “Tweaker,” it’s no
surprise that the Tweaker- 88’s features don’t
stop there. Located to the left of the input jack
are two sets of controls (one for each channel)
that allow you to mold, twist, and morph the
gain structures themselves. Each begins with a
single preamp Gain control, and moves to four
separate switches that give you the option of
tightening or deepening the lows, boosting the
gain into metal territory, cutting or flattening
the mids, or brightening the top end. With all
these options at your disposal, the 88 is certainly the most versatile and powerful amp in
the Tweaker line, and possibly one of the most
impressive in the entire Egnater family.
Show Me The Money
The strongest aspect of the Tweaker- 88’s character is derived from melding the juicy, warm
nature of the Egnater preamp design with a
powerful, clean power amp. Since the Tweaker
and Tweaker- 40 employ 6V6 and 6L6 power
sections (respectively) with such small wattage, the preamp tone is colored when cranking the power section to overdriven levels.
They sound great in their own right, but
the Tweaker- 88’s output section lets one of
Egnater’s best-sounding preamps breathe and
stretch its legs more than ever before.
Arpeggiated notes from a Fender
Telecaster soared through the 88’s Rhythm
channel with great detail in the midrange,
and a pleasant, soft high-end that’s become
a defining characteristic of Egnater amps.
Even when I had the treble control cranked
above the 4 o’clock position, the highs were
still surprisingly sweet, round, and non-abrasive. Flipping the voicing to Modern kicked
in a healthy dose of highs and lows, but not
enough to introduce clashing overtones.
Each channel’s four, tone-shaping switches
helped me carve the tone in greater detail—
some with more noticeable effects than
others. The most drastic of these is the Hot/
Clean switch, which kicks the pristine clean
tone into dirtier territory for blues leads. The
Bright/Normal switch, meanwhile, adds tight