SOLD - Vintage Oahu Tonemaster 230K-E Tube Combo Amp – USA 1950s

by Oahu

$995.00 20277


This is a vintage Oahu Tonemaster 230K-E tube combo amp made in the late 1940's or early 1950's by VALCO Manufacturing Company of Cleveland Ohio.

It is a 6V6 based all tube amp with push-pull output, rated at around 12 watts RMS. It was originally intended for lap steel but can handle up to 3 Instruments and a microphone. Each of those inputs has a different sensitivity, and the good thing is, the more you turn them up, the better they sound.

This thing absolutely sings with a Fender or Gibson solid body plugged into the Mic socket and dialled up. It is very much a “Fender Tweed” type sound. So much so that we understand that Keith Richards has been using 1950s Oahu amps in the studio since around 1995. There is one prominently seen being used in the studio by Keith during Martin Scorsese's 2006 'Rolling Stones' documentary 'Shine a Light.'

The amp is pretty clean cosmetically and has really cool look. The original speaker is long gone & replaced by a great sounding Jensen P10R unit. We believe some capacitors have been changed, but the original transformers appear to be in place. So you will need a step down transformer in Australia as it is 110v.

Features –

Power Output: approximately 12 watts

Tubes: 5Y3, 6V6 (2), 6SL7, 12AY7

Controls: Instrument Volume x 2 , Mic Volume, Tone 

Dimensions: 20'' x 16'' x 11.5''

Weight: 26 lbs

Cosmetics: original covering, original grill cloth, original handle.

Sound-wise, the amp features a big, mellow clean tone that transitions into a thick, compressed overdrive when pushed. Thanks to the oversized cabinet and a circuit that is lighter on the treble, this amp has a warmer tone than many other amps of the era.

This is a very cool recording or low-volume performance amp with a wicked overdrive when cranked. It is fully functional and sounds great.


If you would like to know more about an item or buy it, please click on "I'm interested" on the product page or call John on 0414 994 506


Payment preference for purchases is by direct bank deposit (EFT). Credit cards, Paypal or bank cheque acceptable upon request. We also sell with Lay By - 25% deposit + 90 days to pay


 If you cannot pick up items from our showroom, please advise your post code and we will send you a shipping quote