Fender's tweed Deluxe™ amp is widely regarded as the holy grail of vintage tone machines. I've always loved the aesthetic of the rare 'TV-Front' model, and so I chose to adapt it for my 'go-to' amp, the SE-22.
Like the vintage model that inspired it, this is a 1X12 combo, offering power output of 22 Watts. That, however, is where the resemblance ends. Whereas the original made its power from a pair of 6V6 tubes in push-pull configuration, the SE-22 utilizes a mighty Genelex Gold Lion KT-88 in true Class-A, single-ended topology. The circuit utilizes an EF-86 small-signal pentode as part of its two-stage preamp, and in addition, includes a foot-switchable overdrive circuit that adds two more carefully-voiced gain stages. Finally, a classic tube-driven spring reverb with dual level controls (see below) completes this tone monster.
But wait, there's more!
A boost and tone-bypass circuits, as well as the reverb, can be controlled from the panel, via individual foot switches, or linked to the overdrive. Here's how it works:
Each of these functions is controlled by three mini-toggle switches. The first is a three-position switch that selects between panel, footswitch, and linked control. In the first position, the corresponding function is turned on and off by switch #2, a simple on-off (or in the case of the reverb, on-on) toggle. In the second position, the functions are controlled by individual buttons on the included 4-button footswitch. In the third position, the corresponding function is linked to the overdrive, and will turn on or off when the overdrive is engaged or disengaged. Switch #3 determines the linkage logic: in the first position, the function turns on when the overdrive is engaged, and off when the overdrive is disengaged. In the second position, the function turns OFF when the overdrive is engaged, and ON when it is disengaged.
The reverb operates a bit differently, using a dual concentric control to set two different reverb levels. (If you want one setting to be completely off, simply turn the outer ring of the control to zero.)
While the description may sound a bit confusing, in operation, the system is both intuitive and incredibly useful. Here's what it looks like:
For example: With the boost control engaged, the first preamp stage hits that second (EF-86) stage just hard enough to generate some nice rhythm crunch. The tone control, based on the highly regarded Marshall 18W circuit, offers a wide range, with minimal circuit attenuation when engaged. For rhythm work, I typically keep my reverb up around 7-8. When I engage the overdrive for a lead, however, I prefer far less, or even no reverb, so I link the reverb control to the overdrive. Since I want to get more of my sound from the reverb circuit, i set up the boost to switch off when the overdrive is engaged. Finally, since the overdrive has its own individually voiced tone control, might set up the tone control bypass to cut out when the overdrive is engaged. (This is not necessarily the case, since the tone control in front of the overdrive affects the nature of the drive, more than just the tone.)
Once again, this is a scheme I devised in response to my own playing preferences, but I believe it is one that will be useful to a majority of musicians.