Gibson LAB L-5 Amplifier – SOLD

in the mid 70s, Gibson Musical Instruments purchased a UK-based company called Norlin that happened to own Moog Labs. Gibson immediately directed Moog Labs to design a series of solid state bass, guitar and keyboard amplifiers. One of those amplifiers was the Gibson L-5.

The L-5 is a 2×12 100-watt 2-channel monster, and it is on the other end of the line when you pick up your phone and dial 1-800-HEADROOM. This amp is a super-versatile piece of equipment, sporting a pretty basic T-M-B channel that sounds great and can be clean or dirty as you move the master volume down and the channel volume up. It also has a bright switch that adds some sparkle to the top end of your tone without making the mids flabby.

The second channel is another thing entirely. It too has a volume, bright switch, and Trebble, Middle and Bass controls, but it adds a ‘frequency’ control which helps you find almost any tone you want, and a ‘Multifilter’ that helps tune out some extraneous long waves and get some more bite and crunch in the signal. It also sports a sumptuous reverb tank, making it one of the most versatile sound-machines yet dreamed up without being incredibly over-complicated.

On the back-end of the circuit, there is the afore-mentioned master volume, but this amp also rocks a compressor which works with both channels and can get you to the high, tight, focused sound you’ve always dreamed of without worrying about an additional effect pedal.

Soundwise, this thing can be a mega-clean jazz amp with lots and lots of volume, or a high-gain hard-rock air-mover, with anything in between achievable with a tweak of the controls, and all with very scaleable (read: useable at low) volume. B.B. King thought it made a great blues amp, and he used one as his main rig from 1978 until his passing. So, I mean, who are we to argue with the King?