52 Amplifier Heads, week 26—Suhr Corso 5

At the halfway mark of this series of bedroom friendly all-tube amplifier heads, I thought I’d step it up a notch. I’m sure many followers have been thinking that the longer this series went on, the weaker the amplifier quality would get. I may have thought that too when I first started this series—52 amplifiers heads from 52 different manufacturers is a big ask. But not today. Not at the halfway mark. No, with a 5 watt amplifier head from Suhr, I think this series is alive and kicking. It also helps that the Corso 5 is a sexy looking amp head.

Good looks are not everything though (not that I can attest to that). Luckily the Corso 5 has a lot more than just good looks. A whole lot more. The switches on this head provide so many tonal variations that this amplifier excites me. Before I waffle on, I’ll share the feature list.

  • Drive, Treble and Bass knobs
  • Bright, Mid, Gain, Presence and Deep switches
  • Power attenuator knob
  • Line out
  • 8 ohm speaker outputs
  • Single channel
  • 2 x 12BH7A power tubes
  • 1 x 12AU7 input tubes
  • 2 x 12AX7 tone and phase inverter tubes

Already I want to say #want. Sorry, that’s the Twitter user in me coming out.

The Bright, Mid, Gain, Presence and Deep switches all are on/off switches. So one by one you can turn those features on or off to either add or remove those elements to your tone. When you combine those with the Treble and Bass knobs, you end up with a lot of tonal variety. What impresses me the most though is the power attenuator knob. You can turn the wattage up to 5 watts, or you can dial it right down to … Nothing. Even set to nothing you can get killer sounds from this head by using the Line out feature. Plug the amp head into your favourite audio interface and record your all-tube amplifier sounds. Perfect for my requirements!

Of course, as usual, I’ve not played this amp. I’m not an expert here. I just want this amp (and 25 others so far this year). But I don’t want this amp just because of what I’ve read. No, I’ve heard the official sound bites on the Corsa 5 web page and I’ve seen impressive videos like this one by Pete Thorn. That’s not only a lot of tonal variety, that’s a lot of quality tonal variety.

As I mentioned earlier though, this is a good looking amplifier. Design does mean a lot to me. And this one is just beautiful. You can even choose your preferred grill design from two options. This is an amplifier head that sounds amazing and would look good in any room with or without guitars around it. I wonder if I could convince my wife to buy this out of her furniture budget and not my guitar budget. It’s worth a try.

Disclaimer: I’ve not played through this head. I have not experienced the sound or tone of this head other than through video. That doesn’t matter. It looks awesome, it’s obviously played by winners and I want one.

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