So, whatcha think would be the best selling Fender Amp of all time? Many of you would say the Deluxe Reverb, and you would be ... close! Maybe the Bassman or the Twin Reverb? Nope. Actually, the amp that wears the title of best seller EVER is the (drum rod) Hot Rod Deluxe! Kinda feels a little crazy to me, since I have such a love affair with the Fender tweed and blackface amps of the 1950's and 60's, but beautiful as they might be, the HRDX outsold any of those glorious pre-CBS models. And they really ARE good sounding amps, right outta the chute! The new series IV models are really downright stunning in both clean and dirty tones, and the Combination of an actual Pine Cabinet and Chinese made Celestion "A-Type" speaker make them the best sounding HRDX yet, by far. Can they even BE upgraded? Let's talk about that!
So, if you are an owner of ANY pre-IV model HRDX with the Fender branded (made-in-china) speaker, then you NEED a speaker upgrade, period! If you own a model IV, then yes ... it'll still be worth it, just not as huge of a necessity. Here is the run-down on your options and how they will improve your Hot Rod Deluxe:
The G12C: If, like many, you find your HRDX to be a bit overly dark, not have enough blackface sparkle, and find the bass to get flabby and fart-out when cranked, THIS is the speaker for you!
The ET65: If you want your HRDX to sound more like a low-power tweed Twin or a tweed Pro, with a lot of warm organic goodness and richness, this is the speaker for you.
The Retro 30: If you want your HRDX to sound HUGE, and a little scooped, with a TON of solid bottom and a good bit of top shimmer, this is your speaker!
The Reaper HP: If overall you LIKE the tone of your HRDX, but wish it held together better on the bottom end, and had just a touch more top end blackface/silverface fender spank, this is the speaker you want!
If the basic black HRDX is too plain for ya and you want to stand out, check out the Special Release editions stocked in my Amazon Store, like this beauty:
Oh, and ...
YEARS ago I did a shootout in HRDX speakers. It's an old(!!!) vid from when Youtube was cheezy, and man-oh-man is this video cheezy, but it's still worth a watch if you are considering a speaker upgrade for your Hot Rod Deluxe! Next week, we'll discus the HRDX's lil bro, the ever popular Blues Deluxe.