While the common trend seems to be to label 2016 as the year from hell for music, we can at least find solace knowing that it was a great year for Mesa Boogie. Starting the year off with the JP-2C, and ending with a bang after the widely anticipated release of the Triple Crown 50 (TC-50) amplifier. The next amp following the JP-2C to be added to the Mesa product line, the Mesa Boogie TC-50 Triple Crown is being touted as Mesa’s ultimate amp voiced for rock and beyond.
A three-channel, 50-watt amplifier, the TC-50 aims to satisfy all your rock needs in a distinctively different way from the Mark and Rectifier series amps. Hand-built in Petaluma, California, the amp boasts one of Mesa’s most aggressive and gain-laden channels in their product line but also delivers sparkling cleans, bluesy crunch, and a multitude of tone-sculpting options for players to carefully craft their own unique sound.
Sporting a relatively straightforward front-panel design in comparison to other Mesa amps (we’re looking at you again, JP-2C), each channel includes an identical set of six controls: Presence, Master Volume, Gain, and a three-band EQ section for Bass, Mids, and Treble. Each channel also sports two different switchable modes allowing for a distinctive change in sonic flavor. Normal and Tight options are featured on channels 2 and 3 which allow for a choice between a more vintage or modern sound- while the clean channel includes Normal and Drive options for more broken-up cleans.
While Channels 1 and 2 might be be more or less what one would come to expect from a three channel Mesa amp in terms of general character, Channel 3 is where this amp aims to surprise most players- boasting the most amount of gain in any Mesa amplifier to date. While most players look towards the Mark or Rectifier series amps for bone-crushing metal tones, the TC-50 comes out of left field to service the needs of players looking for an amp that can provide an ultra-saturated gain channel while maintaining a level of versatility that allows for exploration into other styles.
The amp includes all the amenities found on other Mesa amps that make them so versatile, such as a switchable tube-buffered FX loop, solo boost, and true tube reverb with individual channel levels. The six-button 3X3 footswitch, that comes packaged with the amp, allows for easy switching between the amp’s three channels, the FX loop, solo boost, and reverb functions. The TC-50 also includes MIDI functionality which allows for up to 256 preset options and support for all MIDI foot controllers, and Mesa’s CabClone speaker emulator which allows for the amp to be used direct or in conjunction with a speaker cabinet for recording or in a live setting. The TC-50 CabClone includes three different speaker emulations, a ground/lift switch, and a dedicated headphone output for silent practice. Players can also choose to use the stock EL84 power tubes, or switch them out for 6L6 or 6V6 tubes made possible by the amp’s bias select switch on the back panel.
The TC-50 is available as a head, in a 1X12 combo stocked with vintage 30’s, or as a rack mountable unit and is available in a multitude of different tolex color and wood combinations through Mesa’s expansive custom design options offered for all their products. As with all Mesa products, attention to detail is key and is found in everything from the packaging of the amp all the way to its extremely detailed and thorough manual, which can be found online, and is well worth a read for anyone looking to dive deeper into the amp’s features.
The TC-50 head and 1×12 combo are available at Beau Monde Guitars now. Come in and give them a test drive!