Masco Amplifiers

April 26th, 2011


Masco Amp Gallery

Maco Amplifiers were largely a mail order brand available through Layfayette, Archer and other large electronics supply catalogs. It could also be purchased at music stores and appliance stores as an inexpensive house brand.

Masco PA heads are widely available and good quality. They were disgned for voice or music amplification. They differ from Guitar amplifiers in that they did not have the high gain preamp stages and produced more realistic tones. This makes them excellent harp amps.

Many harp players use masco heads with custom speaker cabinets or make a combination amp cabinet. They amps often have multiple speaker outputs to accomodate a variety of speaker combinations. The microphone input is perfect for a high impedance mic such as the JT-30.

MASCO stands for Mark Alan Sampson Company and the amps were produced on Long Island, NY during the 1940s and 1950s. The circuits in Masco amps were often incuded in SAMS photofacts and appear regularly on eBay.

I’ve been able to find three main types of amps. These are the MA, ME and MU series. There are a variety of other products. Here is a gallery of some of the images I’ve scarfed off of eBay.

These are almost always amps with two 6V6 tubes and older preamp tubes. The MA-60 had four 6L6’s four 6J7’s one 6sj7 two 6sc7’s and two 5v4 rectifiers

MA Series Masco Amps

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ME Series Masco Amps

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MU Series Masco Amps

These amps were for musical instruments and were often used for laptop steel guitars. Little walter was supposed to have been playing though a Masco Amp when Muddy first heard him. (Remember, though, that Walter was not a gearhead and played through anything using any mic available and still sounded better than we do.)

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Masco produced a few other odd pieces. Here are some samples:

This is a Masco Audiosphere.

This is a nifty tube intercom made my Masco.

This is a very fancy Masco Reel-to-Reel tape recorder. Many Guitarists in the 1950s used a hacked tape recorder as their first guitar amp. It seems to have been a common thing to do.


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