Soundtronics, Chicago

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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby rbryan on Wed Feb 06, 2013 4:28 pm

I forgot to mention that it is a Soundtronics head (thought I would clarify since so many other amps have been talked about). If you google soundtronics heads then an ebay listing from a year or so ago will pop up that is two channel and has lots of options on it. Mine looks identical, except I don't have the footswitch or any of the options. Just two channels with volume, bass, and treble. There are no other markings on the back of the head that specify a different manufacturer. Thanks!
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby Bigsbyman on Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:09 pm

Today I bought a 1965 GA20RVT from a guy in Mpls. He also had a "Sonic" badged amp head made by Soundtronics. I'd never heard of them before today. His runs on a quad of 6550's, and he said it's about 120 watts of painful clean power. He uses it as a bass amp. Love the gut shots, sure looks like a high quality amp.

'64 JMI Vox AC30 with original alnico blues, '72 JMP 50-watt w/4x12 Greenbacks, '76 Lead & Bass combo (tan 25-watt Celestions), '76 Superlead with TV 4x12 (greenbacks), '78 2204 with Marshall 2x12 cab (Greenbacks), '78 Hylight DR504/SA4123, '79 Fawn 2204 50-watt w/matching Fawn 4x12 (tan 25-watt Celestions), 1970's Marshall 1982AP cabinet (black back 30-watt Celestions), Matchless D/C-30, Traynor, Garnet, Leslie, Bacino, Gibson, Fender, Gretsch, Rickenbacker, Trussart, Dano, Dobro
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby slavestate on Sun Feb 24, 2013 4:00 am

One just was up on eBay last week, it brought in about $350 before shipping. Still very reasonably priced for a 200 watt tube amplifier. Very cool stuff!
Court Jester
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby AxAxSxS on Fri Apr 05, 2013 9:47 pm

I have one of these, the guts look like this-

It has a weird transformer in addition to the normal 2


I think it's a 200 watt bass amp. Does anyone have any schematics or even know what amps he was basing his designs off?
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Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:14 am

Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby Michael Patrick on Fri Jul 19, 2013 2:47 pm

byrotron wrote:I own a 100 watt kern guitar head with reverb and a 200 watt Kern bass head. Love both of them. The 100 has been converted to EL34's and the 200 still has 8417's. My tech had problems converting it to 6550's because he couldnt get the plaate voltage low enough.

My first tube head was a Kern. It had cosmetics like the top one in your picture. If I'm remembering correctly (and it was a loooong time ago) it was a 50-watter with a master volume and reverb.

I wish I knew what happened to it, I have no recollection of selling it.
The price of meat has just gone up, and your old lady has just gone down
Michael Patrick
Mr. Mojo Risin'
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby WHolt22 on Wed Dec 11, 2013 11:36 pm

Anyone interested in selling a Soundtronics/Kern/Sonic head drop me a line!

They are some of my favorite amps to repair and mod
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby sleepingtiger on Sat Dec 28, 2013 4:34 am

From the tubes they use, it sounds like there might have been a little Ampeg inspiration too. I'd love to get my paws on one, for nostalgia if nothing else!

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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby minderbinder on Thu Aug 07, 2014 7:39 pm

Wow, I'm the one who opened this topic way back when... had no idea that discussion has continued all this time! I (finally! after 4 years!) got the stack my father gave me out of the corner and had a good look at it. The head is actually a guitar head, looks very similar to some of the pictures posted here. Single channel with two inputs, normal/bright switch, volume, treble, midtone, bass, 'echo' knobs. Outputs on back for a variety of speaker ohms, input for reverb foot switch. Back is missing. Looking inside the cab, there is a single Eminence 15" in the ported enclosure, stamped to indicate it dates to late 1973.

I don't know when the last time was this thing was on... maybe not since the late 70s/early 80s, when my pop stopped playing regularly! Fires up though and the sucker is LOUD! Aside from a little odor as the accumulated dust and cobwebs I couldn't vacuum out toasted, it seems that the reverb circuit is out of commission. Tone controls don't seem to do that much... especially the midtone and treble. On the other hand, very little hum. I found a tube tech in Chicago who did a real nice job for me a few months ago on a Magnatone 260, so I'll be taking this one to him as soon as I can scrape up a little extra cash to get it cleaned up/refurbed.

I'll try to post pix in a day or two.

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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby markustg on Sun Oct 26, 2014 7:17 pm

(I Posted this on Gearslutz as well)

And now for something completely different.

Looking for anything anyone can tell be about a vintage guitar tube amp.

What is this beast????

This is what I see on it (photo's attached on the GearSlutz forum).


Kern Sound Systems Ltd. Twin 100


Input 1 and 2
Bright/Normal switch
Master Volume
Volume (gain???)
Mid Range boost
3 way on off (maybe dual polarity???)


Manufactured by Kern Sound Systems Ltd. Chicago IL
200 Watts Max
Serial number 1054

Speakers (maybe old Alnico Eminence???) not labeled the same

One speaker has the codes: D513030955 and 433528 and B205 in a circle

The other very similar speaker has the code D513030955 and 433515 ad B180 in a circle

One cone back also has the code 12005-14

Spring Reverb

Help me solve the mystery. Trying to decide if I should have it restored or leave it alone.
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby scottym3 on Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:38 am

Hey all, newbie here just seeing this. I google Kern amps and found this. Back in the early to mid 70's I was in a band called Frost. We were mainly out of Des Plaines, Skokie, Played quite a bit around that area along with colleges in Chicago and Rockford. also up in highwood at the Alley and Scornovocos.(sp)
Anyway, we knew the Kern Brothers, Bill and Henry. We were introduced to them by our friend Frank Gliona(sp) who owned Music Gallery in Evanston, later moving to Highwood and naming it Music Gallery of Highwood. Frank provided us with emergency equipment if anything went wrong with ours.
Anyway, myself and our other guitar player bought amps from Henry and Bill. I had the straight cab and the other guitarist had the slant cab. after a while we brought them back to Henry and he did a mod for us up to 200 watts.
Those Kern amps were as close to Marshall as you could get, and much less expensive.
I've forgotten much of the information on them over the years (CRS) but I do remember they wailed. Really great amps. Wish I still had mine.
Don't remember the name Soundtronics, so that may have come later.
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby ep1966 on Sun Dec 11, 2016 1:07 am

Well got one given to me a week or so ago. Unfortunately the circuits had been stripped out not much left but the tube sockets output jacks and the massive output and power transformers and reverb tank. Don't know what the tranny's are but there tanks.

Does have a decent name badge. The amp ran four 7025 and four 6550's. checked the tranny's and both seem to be fine. Trannys mite be good doners for a Marshall 1959 Plexi build.
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Re: Soundtronics, Chicago

Postby crazy eric on Fri Apr 14, 2017 4:06 am

Hey Kids!

I have a Sonic branded Sountronics head. Four 6550s. Reverb. Has anyone ever run into a schematic?


Crazy Eric
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