When I was younger, I used to adore movies and novels about time travelers who would click some buttons on their machines and transport themselves into a whole different era. The concept of being able to live in other periods of time has always fascinated me. The dream to travel through time became a reality when I started playing my guitar. I discovered that through my music, I could easily move from era to era.
All that became even more tangible once I played through Peavey Delta Blues 115 for the first time. I could actually feel that I was back in the ‘40s and ‘50s, witnessing the birth of rock & roll. This combo is the reincarnation of legendary tones, musicians, and features, everything your heart could ever desire. Let’s discuss one of the best guitar amps under 1000.
As with everything vintage, Peavey Delta Blues 115 features all-tube circuitry. It has three 12AX7 and four EL84 tubes, which contribute to creating its signature sound. This combo has a single 15” Celestion Fullback speaker and 30 watts of power, meaning that this fella can rock any band or home practice. It has two channels: Clean and Lead, which gives you the ability to be more scrupulous about your tone. Peavey Delta Blues 115 has an in-built effects loop, thus, it works amazing with pedals and gives you, even more, sonic options.
It offers beautiful spring reverb and tube-driven tremolo (which is the best kind in my book) that can be dialed to any extent. It also gives you the ability to boost your sound and add some more strength to it. This vintage marble is compatible with a foot controller, enabling you to control channels, reverb, boost, and tremolo on the fly. As for the sockets, this amp has a single input for your instrument, effects send and return, two footswitch jacks (one for reverb/tremolo and the other for channel/boost), and an input for external speakers.
The controls are located on the top part of the Delta Blues 115. They are presented in the classic Peavey design – black pointed knobs that showcase the settings pretty well. Since we have so many features, the controls are numerous as well but don’t worry. There is nothing that difficult here. Let’s dive right into it and explore the parameters each of them is in charge of.
I will start with the two toggles situated at the end of the front panel. The lower one is a Power switch, which turns the device on and off. The upper is a Standby switch that activates the standby mode and keeps the tubes warm while the amp is not operational. Moving on to the knobs and buttons themselves. First, we have a Normal knob (after the instrument input), which sets the volume of the clean channel. Then we have the Channel button that allows you to switch between the two channels.
Next comes the Pre Gain and Post Gain, which, respectively, adjust the volume of the initial and final signal in the Lead Channel. These are followed by Reverb which activates the said effect and intensifies it. Later on, we have a passive 3-band EQ, i.e. Bass, Middle and Treble knobs that balance out low, mid, and high frequencies. In this section, you will find the Boost button that adds gain to your sound. And finally, we have Intensity and Speed, which modifies the depth and rate of the tremolo effect.
Peavey Delta Blues Sound
Peavey Delta Blues 115 is a paradise for rock & roll and blues players. The sound it delivers is steeped with vintage warmth and sweetness, is thick and textured and can be tailored to the musician’s needs. The clean channel has enough emphasis on all three ranges of the frequency spectrum – it maintains the bottom end while keeping the mid and high focused and sparkly.
When you crank up the Normal knob and enhance the volume of the clean channel, the amp starts to overdrive and create that subtle distortion that adds dimension to your pristine tones. The lead channel offers the distortion you would expect from the valves: nothing extreme but that perfect gnarl from another universe. The tube-driven tremolo is extremely elaborate and can be tweaked to be as fast or slow as you desire. The spring reverb is nothing extraordinary, however, it is thick and saturated with character. Even though anyone could use Peavey Delta Blues 115, blues, jazz, and rock & roll is where this fella really shines.
Peavey Delta Blues 115 brings back the sounds and vibes of the good ol’ days. It is featured in a durable and fancy chassis, promising to be by your side for eternity. The tubes in its preamp and power section are what make this unit so unique. As you can deduct from everything I have mentioned above, it shines in every parameter, namely, in terms of features, controls and sound. Listen to the demos and let your ears decide if Delta Blues works or not. Good luck!