Egnater Renegade Head
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Egnater Renegade Head

Renegade Head, Tube Guitar Amp Head from Egnater in the Renegade series.

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Eroachguitar 24/09/2012

Egnater Renegade Head: Produktbewertung von Eroachguitar (content in English)

"An amp that departs from the expected"
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The Renegade 65 is a staple of Bruce Egnater's recently launched production line of amplifiers, Manufactured in asia under strict tolerances, the Renegade, along with its cousins the Tweaker, the Rebel, and the Tourmaster, represents Egnater's first foray into bang-for-buck vacuum tube amplification.

Sporting two channels with independant EQ controls, as well as wattage, deep/tight, and bright/normal switches, the Renegade shoots for the maximum number of tonal flavors with as few channels as possible. Each channel also has its own volume control, both of which are governed by not one, but TWO global master volume controls, or "Main" as they are labeled on the panel. "Main 2" is footswitchable and when engaged, gives the amp a huge boost in volume and sustain for soaring solos that cut through the mix.

Another great feature of the Renegade, which is a unique Egnater innovation, is the Tube Mix function, which exists separately on each channel. For those unfamiliar, the Tube Mix control routes some or all of the preamp signal to either (in the Renegade) a pair of 6L6's, or a pair of EL34's. Theoretically this makes it possible to douse your tone with either American or British power tube flavor, or any ratio of the two combined.

Adding to the list of pleasant features on the Renegade are global Density (aka Resonance) and Presence controls, as well as dedicated bias test points and adjustment controls on the back for each pair of power tubes.

A solid-state driven effects loop and XLR Line-Out are also included.

UTILIZATION

The Renegade, going through a Seismic 2X12 Cabinet loaded with english-made Celestion Vintage 30's, hit the ground running with great tones on both channels right out of the box. The clean channel is very reminiscent of a Fender Bassman or Marshall JTM-45, which is a fresh departure from the usual clean channel voicing of multi-channel tube amps. I've always been in love with the warm, smooth and sometimes hairy clean tone of the '59 Bassman and the Marshall JTM-45, which have almost identical circuit topology, and I was very pleased that someone took the time to capture this sound in a channel-switching amp.

The overdrive channel features a hot-rodded Marshall style sound with plenty of harmonic detail, yet clear and tight. A lot of upper-mid emphasis on this channel makes it ideal for 80's hard rock with the gain cranked up high, while rolling back the gain conjures up a very convincing plexi-style overdrive, especially with the Tube Mix maxed out in the EL34 direction. Bumping the Tube Mix over to the 6L6 side reveals a little more aggressive bite to the bottom end, while losing the signature EL34 midrange emphasis. The blending of the power tube characteristics is where the Renegade truly finds its unique voice.

The tonestack and mode switches on both channels are very responsive without being overwhelming. The amp is bright but still pleasant to play even with the treble control maxed, and its thick without being boomy when the bass is maxed. To this end, Egnater did a great job of making the controls usable throughout their range. The tones are all great, it's just a matter of dialing them to your personal perfection.

The FX loop is usable, as is the direct-line out, but I know of very few guitarists who utilize the line-out of a tube amplifier, since it cuts a huge part of the tone out of the equation - that being the speaker cabinet and power section.



SOUNDS

I've played both my Charvel So-Cal (with coil splitting capability) and my Les Paul through the Renegade, and the Renegade brings it no matter the guitar or its settings.

OVERALL OPINION

I have no real complaints about the Renegade. For the price, it is well made, and performs better than amps that cost twice as much. Any complaints regarding quality of construction or components should be quickly buffered by recognizing that it is not a hand-made, boutique guitar amplifier, and by that token, the quality of the Renegade amplifier is pleasantly surprising.

To boot, the head itself is considerably lighter in weight than many comparably sized heads, which is good news for the guitarist with a bad back. Despite its light weight, the headshell appears to be made from actual plywood and not MDF, which will please some quality-minded players.

The tolex covering is not the most durable stuff on the market, so if you plan on gigging with it, expect some wear and tear rather quickly unless you're fanatical about protecting it.

The bias adjustments are pretty much foolproof and can be operated by anyone with a multimeter following some simple instructions without fear of damaging the amp.


The Renegade 65 is an amazingly versatile, well-designed amplifier that has a lot to offer guitarists of all styles and levels.