Celebrating its 10th Anniversary last year, the Rockerverb Series demonstrates better than anything else that a workhorse amp can be a master of all trades. The original Rockerverb was actually Orange’s first ever ‘high gain’ amplifier, with a unique voice that quickly became a firm favorite amongst the heavy crowd. However, its supreme versatility and dependability meant the series has been a mainstay for touring artists and session aces, both on the road and in the studio.
The previous MKII version was voted in the top ten of Music Radar’s ‘Best Valve Combo Amps’ list, but the new Rockerverb 50 MKIII 2x12 combines over a decade of user feedback with numerous improvements to the design. In a first for the Rockerverb Series, the MKIIIs include selectable output power options to manipulate headroom and volume.
This 50 Watt version switches down to 25W in half power mode, whilst the mains transformers have also been upgraded for better low end response and articulation. The MKIII also features the same footswitchable attenuator that has been so popular with users of the Thunderverb and Dual Dark Series amps.
Orange Rockerverb 50 MKIII Combo Guitar Amp Features
- Twin channel Class A/B 2x12 inch guitar amp combo
- Footswitchable valve driven reverb
- Valve buffered effects loop
- Footswitchable attenuator
- Selectable output wattage
The Clean channel has been revoiced on the new MKIIIs for a more ‘chimey’ response, but still retains the warmth and vintage character of a non-master volume design. The new models now have even greater headroom than previous versions, whilst the valve driven spring reverb now has a more extensive range with a brighter trail. Add to this a host of other hidden refinements and you have the finest sounding and most feature-laden Rockerverb to date.
Highly Versatile Twin Channel Design
The original Rockerverb gained a cult following on account of its iconic high gain tones. The MKIIIs of course continue this tradition, but these amps are immensely flexible. The Dirty channel goes anywhere from classic British crunch to the very heaviest modern genres, and always maintains outstanding clarity.
The non-master volume Clean channel has been re-engineered to take on a more ‘sparkly’ and ‘crisp’ nature but with greater control through a revoiced two band EQ section. The MKIIIs have even greater headroom and volume in full power mode, should you need it, but this can now be manipulated with the amp’s output power and Attenuator controls.
Footswitchable Valve Driven Spring Reverb
Driven by a pair of 12AT7/Ecc81 valves and a custom transformer, the spring reverb circuit in the MKIII has undergone significant upgrades. It is Orange’s richest sounding spring reverb design to date, with a more intuitive and usable sweep, ranging from subtle ‘air’ to full-on surf.
Footswitchable Attenuator Control
Output stage saturation at ‘conversation volumes’. The Attenuator circuit is located after the master volume controls and determines when and how the amp distorts after the preamp stage. This means the overall volume level can be reduced, whilst keeping control over the amp’s output clipping characteristics.
Unlike a loadbox, this design ensures the all-important relationship between the output transformer and the speaker remains intact, so even at very low volumes the amp remains springy and responsive. Turning the Attenuator control clockwise reduces the overall output level (i.e. increases the attenuation), which can be remotely defeated via a footswitch for a volume boost on either channel for lead lines.
Switchable Output Power
Switching the amp’s output power allows for more control over the headroom and breakup from the output valves. Reduce the output for greater output valve clipping and saturation at lower volume levels. The Rockerverb 50 MKIII features a ‘half power’ mode which drops the plate voltage on the output valves, reducing the output power to 25 Watts.
Valve Buffered FX Loop
For the purist who loves their pedals, the highly transparent effects loop is buffered by a single 12AT7/Ecc81, ensuring an all-valve signal pat