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AIMS amp

8/17/2000 1:50 PM
Steve F. AIMS amp
Anyone know anything about the AIMS "Eclipsor"?  
Looks to be about 100W, all tube.  
Undiscovered treasure or steaming pile  
of crap? It doesn't work and I would like opinions before investing any time in it.  
Thanks in advance,  
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8/17/2000 5:16 PM

Don't know about the Eclipsor, for sure. I've seen a couple of different AIMS amps around here for $100 for a 100w head to $175 for a 100W 2-12 combo...which may have been the Eclipsor. I think they were made in AZ. in the...70's? They DO look funky. Does yours have the big black knobs on a big faceplate? I remember they had pretty good size transformers. I think with a little work, they looked like they could be made into funky-looking, decent sounding amps. I think they are probably somewhere in between treasure and crap. Nobody's gonna beat your door down to get you to sell them one, but I would think they would be at least as good (and maybe better...who knows) as some of the mass-market bland stuff selling since they were made. The potential may be there for some minor mods to make it useable, if not unique. I DO know they are loud!  
8/17/2000 6:27 PM

Hi Steve:  
Couple weeks ago I fixed an AIMS for a young guitarist, it is his first tube amp.  
Apparently not considered a mere amp, his is labeled *Personalized Guitar Sound System* :) Anybody heard of this one or have a schematic? I didn't need to draw one for this repair and would have to pull the board.  
His is about like a Fender Twin Reverb in the preamp & features, but the power section consists of a pair of 6550's. Also switches channels if he had the footswitch.  
Although I really like 6550 tubes, the best feature IMHO is the pair of high output alnico 12inch speakers in this early '70's instrument.  
Good transformers, fairly decent PC board with flying leads (shielded where necessary) to the pots, jacks, and power tubes, miniature tubes board mounted with the first-stage 12AX7s isolated from vibration with rubber mounting rings.  
Since the only socket holes in the chassis are for the power tubes, there is a huge area including & surrounding the PCB where it could be removed (mini tubes with it) and replaced with almost anything else, PTP, eyelet, terminal strips. Preamp holes could be punched if you wanted to make something without having the PCB mini sockets, chassis is like a Fender except without being completely enclosed. There is no permanent metal rear panel, welded or otherwise, on the chassis, instead a wooden frame with a metal grill bolts on to the cab, allowing ventilation to the inside of the chassis. I guess its a good idea considering the tubes are upright INSIDE the chassis instead of inverted like a Twin.  
As is, its not too bad, good power, nice clean tones but gets ratty when cranked too much or driven with a pedal. Fairly quiet amp too, interesting mid control which kills volume if maximized or minimized.  
I would certainly make it run, any repair parts you need could likely be used later if you think it needs to be modded or completely reworked if it turns out you are disappointed with the stock sound.  
Hope this helps,  
8/17/2000 7:39 PM

"Anyone know anything about the AIMS "Eclipsor"?"
I know a guy who was involved with that company. I'll see if I can get in contact with him and see if he can lend any insight..... From the few times I've heard them, I must say they do sound rather good.  
I almost grabbed one a few months ago for about $100, but I need speakers, not more amps right now. I have a pair of BF Bassmans for which I'm saving $$$ to build combo cabs.  
C ya,  
8/18/2000 1:34 AM

I bought an Aims 100w PA in 1971 and the salesman's rap was that it was made by a group of engineers that left Fender.  
8/19/2000 2:38 PM
Steve F.
Thanks, Dutch. That would be great if you  
could get ahold of the guy. Just looking  
at the amp on the outside, it looks to be  
pretty well made, but those dorky looking  
knobs, well... It reminds me of a piece  
of test equipment. They probably cost a lot,  
but they just don't say "bitchin' guitar amp".  
I have to admire a company that was willing  
to make something that didn't try to look  
like one of the "name" brands.  
I hear you on the heads vs. speakers thing -  
right now I have a number of heads and only  
two decent cabs, both of which I made.  
I wonder where all the speaker cabs go - you  
always see "heads only" for sale,  
but rarely see the cabs by themselves. There  
must be some guitar cab graveyard somewhere.  
8/19/2000 2:54 PM

They recently had a 6-12"(?) at Guitar Center in Denver, but it's gone. I always though an old Roland Space Echo would look cool on one of those AIMS amps:)  

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