solid state amplifiers

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Career guitars, basses and amplifiers were made in Korea for distribution in Germany by the Knauer Company from the early 2000s onwards.


Austin guitars is a St Louis Music Inc brand, producing a range of low cost acoustics, electrics, basses and accessories. Austin use classic designs for their inspiration, offering a wide range of body styles, colors and features.

Sound City Amps

Sound City was originally an Arbiter Electronics music shop in Rupert Street London. In 1966/1967 Arbiter's PA and amplifier line was designed and built in the rear of the shop and was branded "Sound City". When Dallas Musical Ltd merged with Arbiter in 1967 all of the Sound City amps and cabinets (as well as Arbiter Electronics' other products) were relabelled from Arbiter Electronics, Ltd. to either Arbiter Sound City or Dallas Arbiter, Ltd.

Link: Sound City history


AIMS  (American International Music Sales) was started in 1971 as an amplifier wholesaler / distributer. By 1973 they were also offering a range of guitars.


Karera brand was used for electric guitars, bass guitars and amplifiers during the 1990s and 2000s. They were made in Korea and distributed by V.J. Rendano Music Co., Inc. of Youngstown, Ohio. There were Karera strat, tele, precision bass,  LP, ES-335 copies as well as a mini strat and Rickenbacker 330 copy. Also some solid state amplifiers and some accessories (like sound-hole pickups) were branded "Karera".


Elk was a Japanese guitar, amplifier and music-electronics brand during the 1960s and 1970s. Elk instruments were built by the Miyuki Company and were mostly distributed within Japan. Miyuki reportedly stopped making ELK amplifiers (and possibly the guitars as well) in the early 1970s and manufacture was taken over by Hoshino Gakki (the owners of the Ibanez brand).

Elk mainly exported amplifiers but a few guitar models were distributed and were reputedly of good quality. For example the Elk 1972 English language catalog only lists three guitar models: a thinline semi acoustic, a solid-body electric and a bass. The 1972 Japanese catalogue has a lot more models.


American / Korean partnership which started in the early 1990s producing in Korea, high quality hand finished copies using American hardwoods.

The brand name changed to Chery for a time during 1993-1994 and finally to Cheri in 1994 (according to By 1996 the brand name was discontinued

Orange PC

Orange Personal Computer, Rear View

Is Orange becoming Apple? The Orange PC (O.P.C.) is an all-in-one computer amplifier speaker – The OPC is designed and built in the UK. It is a fully integrated computer with internal speaker which delivers playing, recording, editing and computing capabilities to musicians. Orange claim this is the first computer of its kind that you can connect yourself and your music to the digital world simply by plugging in your instrument.

According to Orange their OPC will be leading the way with a number of firsts:

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Vester was a brandname used by the Samuel Music Company (Midco International) of Effingham, Illinois for their range of Korean made guitars.
The Vester brand started in 1990 following the super strat boom of the late 1980s. 

Vester instruments were originally made by Saehan Guitar Technology, a subdivision of Zaozhuang Saehan Music Co., Ltd in South Korea (now known as Sunghan Music). The brand grew to embrace a range of Japanese and Korean made acoustics, electrics and amplifiers.

Although initially successful, Midco abandoned the Vester trademark in 1994. The Fender Corporation began preparing a litigatory action against Midco / Samuel Music in 1994, for allegedly choosing the Vester brand as a "sound-alike" for Fender, also claiming similarity between the typefaces used on the headstocks. Faced with the lawsuit, Midco ditched the Vester brand and concentrated on their other brands (like Lotus).


LOUD Technologies Inc. is one of the world's largest manufacturers and distributors of professional audio and music products. As the corporate parent for world recognized brands including Alvarez, Ampeg, Crate, EAW, Knilling, Mackie, SIA and TAPCO, LOUD Technologies produces and distributes a wide range of digital recording products, loudspeakers, commercial audio systems, audio and music software, guitars, guitar and bass amplifiers, and orchestral string instruments. LOUD Technologies' brands can be found in professional and project recording studios, video and broadcast suites, post-production facilities, sound reinforcement applications including churches and nightclubs, and retail locations as well as on major musical tours.


The Crush Amps are Orange's range of solid state practice or small venue amps. These amplifiers are not made in England.

The range of Orange Crush amplifiers extends from the Crush PiX CR12L through to the new 100 watt CR100 BXT, with a total of eight models. These amps incorporate the styling typical of Orange amplifiers: genuine Orange grille cloth, miniature Orange crest finish, signature Orange picture frame edging, exterior beading and the unique hieroglyphic easy to follow symbols.

The Crush amplifier range was updated in summer 2009, the main changes are:

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