Vox Sound Equipment Limited, 1968-1970
The picture above is from the "Vox Sound Equipment Ltd" catalogue of early 1969. The annotator marks the price as £198.0.0 (still decimal currency) - £20 or so more expensive than in 1967.
Just under 400 Conquerors were issued in the "Vox Sound Equipment Limited" (VSEL) period (1968-early 1970) - effectively from serial number 2000-2397. All were made at the Vox Works, West Street, Erith, as earlier amps had been.
For more on the history of "Vox Sound Equipment Limited", see this page.
Production runs in 1970 and 1971, that is to say in the "Vox Sound Limited" period, were patchy. VSL amps - serial numbers 2380 to the end of production - are registered here.
Vox Sound Equipment Ltd
The general characteristics of Vox Sound Equipment Ltd Conquerors, late 1968 - early 1970:
- Dimensions remain the same as earlier amps. Amp: 23 1/2" wide, 9 1/2" high, 9 1/2" deep. Cab: 30" wide, 19" high, 12" deep. Covers in the final days of VSL only supplied for the amp.
- Back boards are now tolexed only (no cloth). Corners are square.
- Serial number plates initially hand stamped.
- New chassis and preamp sections were not machine stamped with serial numbers as JMI units had been.
- The first style of plate (similar to the JMI plates) is replaced soon after Conqueror no. 2082 by one in a squarer font with, among other things, "HIGH VOLTAGE" in large letters.
- Certain models destined for Denmark were designated simply with a letter and number:
A1 = Supreme
A2 = Super Foundation Bass
B1 = Defiant
B2 = Foundation Bass
C1 = Conqueror
C2 = Dynamic Bass
- Following soon after the new serial number plates, came new boxes: three plastic vents take the place of the two metal ones.
- Speakers in the VSEL period are normally Celestion alnico T1088s, as they were in JMI days. The new label is particularly handsome. Black capped Goodmans 241s sometimes occur, however.
- The terminus post quem for the production of serial number 2181 is 13th May 1969, the date of the later of its two speakers.
- The new circuit, without standby lamp or switch, comes in at around serial number 2260.
- The schematic for the preamp is at first OS/136, the power amp OS/133. By 1970 the preamp has changed: OS/184.
Below, a register of surviving amps. If anyone knows of Conquerors that have not yet been included, do let me know.
FIRST STYLE SERIAL NUMBER PLATES
- similar to JMI, but hand stamped
Serial number 2004 - whereabouts unknown
A hand-stamped serial number plate (in common with all early VSEL amps). A couple of knobs replaced, but otherwise in good condition. The cab has its brackeet fixings and the amp its footswitch.
Serial number 2029 - currently in Turkey
Note the hand-stamped number plate. Mounting hardware present on both amp and cab (an uncommon thing these days). The speakers are Goodmans, the type more commonly found in Defiant and Supreme cabs. Thanks to Cem for the pictures.
A number of early Conqueror cabs have lost their original drivers, so it's difficult to say how common such Goodmans might have been. The next earliest VSEL cab, accompanying Conqueror no. 2181 (below), has Celestion alnico T1088s, which were standard during the JMI period.
Serial number 2044 - currently in the UK
Evidently much used, the control panel having borne the brunt of some pretty serious wear. Serial number plate hand stamped. Thanks to Ani for the pictures.
Serial number 2046 - currently in the UK
An early VSEL Conqueror. Thanks to Steve for the pictures.
Serial number 2050 - currently in Germany
Complete with its cab, side stands and fixing brackets. The stands have hooded castors - typical of amps of this period.
Serial number 2070 - currently in Europe
Serial number 2082 - currently in the UK
A great little rig. Still the first-style serial number plate. The preamp control panel is from a JMI amp, replacing a badly damaged original. One speaker replaced with a Marshall. The remaining original is a Goodmans Power Range. Thanks to Steve for the pictures.
Serial number 2097 - currently in the USA
Serial number 2111 - currently in the UK
Serial number 2171 - currently in Europe
Serial number 2181 - currently in Europe
A nice rig. The pictures are revealing, in that they show the date codes of the Celestion alnicos: EB12 and EB13 = 12th and 13th May 1969.
Serial number and whereabouts unknown
Serial number unknown - currently in the UK?
"Vox Sound Equipment Ltd" is just visible on the serial number plate of the cab.
NEW STYLE SERIAL NUMBER PLATES
Note the size of the "High Voltage" legend
Serial number blank - currently in Denmark
A nice VSEL Conqueror rig. Note the designation on serial number plate - "C1". Thanks to Frank for the pictures.
Serial number 2120 - whereabouts unknown
Photos a bit dark, but a nice amp. "Vox Sound Equipment Ltd." on the panel.
Serial number 2170 - currently in Europe
Back to the old style serial number plate.
Serial number 2203 - currently in Denmark
A nice amp and cab set. Note on the serial plate the designation "C1" stamped over "Conqueror", as in the case of the other amp from Denmark above. Thanks to Erik for the pictures.
Serial number 2247 - currently in Italy?
Serial number 2253 - currently in Germany
No standby circuit
A single indicator lamp on the front of the amp
At this point the MRB effect becomes six position rather than three. For an outline of the circuit, see this page.
Serial number 2263 - currently in Germany
A nice set - amp, cab and original power lead. Thanks to Oliver for the pictures.
Serial number 2271 - currently in Denmark
Designated C1 - made for export by VSEL to Denmark. The agent was Alfred Chrisentsen, which also handled other VSEL solid state amps.
Serial number 2275
Just the serial number plate for the time being.
Serial number 2333
Just the serial number plate.
Serial number 2351
Serial number 2376
Still VSEL designated on the the control panel and serial number plate.
Serial number unknown - currently in Europe
Missing its back panel. No standby circuit. "Vox Sound Equipment Ltd" on the control panel. Plastic vents on the box.
Serial number unknown - currently in Europe
VSEL on the control panel. The cab has its original VSEL silver alnicos (and ident plate).
Stray cab - serial no. 006
Still with its speaker wiring diagram inside. The drivers are black capped Goodmans ceramics.