I have to admit that I am partial to push-pull amps. Without getting all technical push-pull is when an amp has 2 output tubes and a phase inverter (another tube) splitting the signal between the 2 output tubes. Yes, I’m working on a single ended amp now (one output tube, no phase inverter) but I really prefer push-pull amps. They are a bit more complicated circuit-wise but worth it. They sound bigger and more complex to me.
I also am cheap, ask my wife. That’s why a deal on a push pull amp is right up there with margaritas on the beach and banana pancakes on a Sunday morning.
So, naturally, that brings me to the Laney CUB 10 . Laney amps seems to run a bit under the radar. They have a wide range of products available but I don’t see a whole lot of discussion about them. By chance I came across the Laney Cub 10 and was surprised at what it offered and at the price, about 200 bucks! That’s not much more than most single ended amps.
Here are the specs:
- 10 Watts RMS
- 10″ Celestion Speaker
- 2 x ECC83(12AX7) Pre Amp Tubes
- 2 x 6V6GT Output Tubes
- Hi & Lo Inputs
- Tone, Volume, Gain controls
It’s a nicely equipped little amp. It has Gain and Volume controls so you can control the preamp drive with the gain control and control the power tube drive by the volume control. There is also a tone control, High/Lo inputs and an output extension jack to plug the Cub 10 a different speaker cabinet.
While there is no schematic available from Laney there is a block diagram in the owners manual that can help us understand whats going on in the Laney Cub 10.
Looking at the block diagram we can see that there is one gain stage followed by the gain control. This is the control to set the amount of drive in the preamp. There is another volume control after the second gain stage and before the phase inverter. This control could be thought of as the master volume and it controls the amount of drive to the power tubes. The first two gain stages account for one of the 12AX7 preamp tubes (V1 a and b).
We can’t tell exactly what type of phase inverter is being used but my money is on a LTP or Long Tail Pair. This is by far the most common type of phase inverter used in guitar amps. The phase inverter uses the second 12AX7 preamp tube (V2 a and b).
After the phase inverter is the tone control. This is most likely a “Cut” control. This type of tone control is most famous for being used in various Vox amps. Laney is British so I guess that makes sense… A cut control doesn’t add any treble but just cuts or reduces the high frequencies.
After the tone control is the pair of 6V6s, the output transformer and speaker. The basic topology of the Laney Cub 10 somewhat reminds me of a single channel Fender 6G3 Deluxe with a different tone control. Here’s the 6G3 schematic if you’re interested.
OK then, how does this all sound? Here is a demo video.
It’s might be a little long but it covers a lot of ground. I think there a some really nice tones in the Cub 10. You can’t go too far wrong with 6V6 tube overdrive.
It’s a nice looking little amp too. I like the the asymmetrical speaker enclosure and the black, leather looking vinyl.
Right now Amazon has the Laney CUB 10 for about 200 bucks with free shipping. That’s a really good price for a push-pull amp with a pair of 6V6s.