Soldano profiles now more important than ever

  • Saw a NAMM video that Mike Soldano is retiring. He may hand off some of his stuff to another company, but it'll no longer be him so that may affect future quality. With that in mind, I suspect that the resale value of Soldano amps will spike since they're now an endangered species.


    Every day there's a new reason to be glad I bought the Kemper. :)

  • He actually sold the brand so he could focus on designing circuits vs sales etc.


    There will be new SLO models manufactured in the same factory that manufacturers the Friedman amps from my understanding.

    Yeah, the interview I saw was very sketchy on details and I couldn't find much from the Google-plex. Regardless of what the actual reality is, I'd bet a couple of cold beers that used Soldano amps are about to get significantly more expensive. Because, you know, vintage and rare!


    Ironically, my first exposure to the rather excellent sounding Soldano has been hearing great profiles of them on the Kemper. :)

  • First, Mike is NOT retiring.

    And he did not sell the brand.


    The part of the video deadpan linked to was talking SPECIFICALLY about the SLO SRV Edition amp that never went into production. That's it.


    Mike has entered into the same type of partnership with BAD as other amp/pedal manufacturers like Friedman, Morgan, Wampler, etc. -- namely, the Mike will design the amps and BAD will handle manufacturing, distribution, and support.


    I repeat, Mike is NOT retiring. And he did not sell the brand.



    "I've found somebody that can take my product to a whole new level"



    "I'm going to get into doing design work and bringing to life a bunch of products that literally have been sitting on my drawing board for a long time"



    etc...


  • He told me about the deal he struck along time ago with Yamaha that wanted to make a joint amp with him. Hopefully this goes better for Mike since Yamaha didn't listen to him on parts and chose their own to cut costs. I believe BAD has a pretty good handle on things.

  • His deal with Jet City was similar. Mike provided the schematics and circuit design and Jet City did a pretty decent job on the manufacturing side. There were only a few components that were different. That's why the Jet City amps were so great for modding... just a few component swaps and you basically had a SLO 100.


    In one of those videos he mentioned improvements they were making. One of them was new DC heater runs. In his Jet City amps the DC heater runs ran directly under (flip side of the PCB) various critical components and created a TON of noise. One of the first things my amp guy did to my JCA22 was cut those traces and ran new elevated heater runs to every tube. Noise was gone.

  • He told me about the deal he struck along time ago with Yamaha that wanted to make a joint amp with him. Hopefully this goes better for Mike since Yamaha didn't listen to him on parts and chose their own to cut costs. I believe BAD has a pretty good handle on things.

    I have one of those Yamaha amps, a T100C. Very interesting amp, says on the back it was made in Thomaston, GA. I gigged with it for a long time and it served me well, but I never got into that Soldano high gain "grind". It is very similar to a SLO, in fact an improvement in one way in that you have separate tone controls for clean and OD, and the SLO doesn't.


    You could contact Soldano and they would send you a sheet detailing all the things they did not like about the T100C, and how to fix them. One suggestion was to add a power supply inductor in place of a resistor (mine already had this done when I bought it used). Also Mike didn't like the stock G12H-100 speaker, he preferred a V30. Mine would not output 100W, and after some troubleshooting found there was an issue with one of the stages that limited the output (a design flaw), probably another thing Mike didn't like as it wasn't in the SLO. That was quickly fixed and the amp was loud and proud after that.


    Hope this thing goes up in value. And our local GC has a Hot Rod 50 Plus for $1800, kind of pricey IMHO but is gorgeous with that purple cab and white chassis. I am SO tempted...

  • Say what you will, but it is being made by a third party. That can be good or bad, but it is not the craftsmanship work of the actual creator. If that is how you want to look at it. Will Pablo do a better job than Mike Soldano? Who knows. I love my Diezel Herbert, hopefully they wont go that route. I know they make the cabs with that company.


    Point is, should the cost be the same if it is not truly 'boutique'? Can you classify a third party a boutique? I despise anything China and avoid if at all possible. At least this is in the USA. For now.