Blackstar is marking its 10th birthday at Summer Namm, which opens in Nashville today, with a major product launch and news of a management buyout
Three new retro-styled 10 Watt combos will be unveiled – Celestion speakered and one each based on Blackstar’s Artisan, Artist and Series One ranges. To make them even more desirable, production is going to be limited to just 1,000 examples of each.
The Artisan 10 AE is a low gain, classic crunch amp that uses an EL34 in the power amplifier for a warm British crunch. Blackstar says: ‘In this model we have included a hot pre-amp Boost for authentic classic rock/indie rhythm playing and vocal Billy Gibbons inspired leads.
‘The Artist 10 AE deploys a 6L6 output valve to give this amp a characteristically bright clean sound and a hot lead tone. The lead sounds are enhanced by a built-in overdrive circuit inspired by our HT-Drive pedal which will take you from dynamic crunch to singing, smooth legato.’
The Series One 10 AE is driven by a KT-88 valve, inspired by the S1-200. Blackstar says this newcomer benefits from the extra headroom of the KT-88, resulting in dynamic modern cleans and tight high-gain overdrive. In addition the patented ISF control is claimed to give access to more distortion flexibility than any other single-ended valve amplifier on the market.
The three new combos will be available from November 2017.
Meanwhile, Blackstar has also announced a management buyout. The deal means that Blackstar will remain an independent company with founding management owning a majority share in the business.
Ian Robinson (co-Founder, Managing Director) said: ‘This marks an exciting new chapter in Blackstar’s history, which will allow us to retain our independence and gives us the opportunity to take our business to the next level. We are looking forward to many years of working with our distributors, dealers and, most of all, our customers to continue to deliver ‘The Sound InYour Head’.’
Paul Hayhoe (co-Founder, Sales & Marketing Director) said: ‘We celebrate our 10th anniversary this year and are really looking forward to developing the new opportunities we now have. Expect more exciting news from Blackstar soon.’