VOX SOUND LIMITED (VSL) AC50s
1975 - 1976
"Beat Instrumental" magazine, October 1973, signalling the end of the original incarnation of "Vox Sound Limited". VSL evidently did not put in an appearance at the Associated Musical Instrument Industries (A.M.I.I). show in August of that year. Negotiations were probably in progress with Dallas Arbiter though.
As far as "Beat Instrumental" is concerned, the first one hears of a Dallas-made amp is in May 1974 - the AC30. The AC50 was evidently "in progress" - and still in progress in December '74, as its price then is also "TBA" = "To Be Announced".
"Beat Instrumental" magazine, May 1974. The entry is the same in the December 1974 issue.
A page from the Dallas Arbiter / Vox catalogue of late 1973 or early 1974. Note that the AC50 represented has the type of logo used on "Vox Sound Equipment Limited" amps. See this page.
Quite what sort of AC50 Dallas was offering at this point is not clear - perhaps a small stock of unsold VSEL amps. "Vox Sound Limited" - the company that Dallas took over - had phased the AC50 out - ie. none were produced from 1970 to 1972. No mention is found in any of the VSL catalogues nor in the pricelists published in "Beat Instrumental" magazine. Below, a list from July 1971.
"Beat Instrumental" magazine, July 1971. Only two valve amps: the AC30 and V100. For material on "Vox Sound Limited", which superceded "Vox Sound Equipment Limited" in mid 1970, see this page, with further links there.
1974 - 1975
The first we see of the AC50 after 1969 is in 1975 - the new Arbiter-made amps with the "old-fashioned" VOX logo in gold letters.
The address of the new company: Elm Road, Vanguard Way, Shoeburyness, Essex. Naturally this was Dallas Arbiter, the address of which is given in trade journals of the time as: DALLAS MUSICAL LTD. Dallas House, Vanguard Way, Shoeburyness, Essex SS3 9QX, Tel 037008-4121/5.
Elm Road and Vanguard Way are here on Google satellite view.
Below, the Arbiter/Hayman drum factory at Shoeburyness into which production of the new Vox amps was moved (in late 1973 / early 1974):
Photo Mark Goodwin.
Above, the well-known advert issued by Dallas Arbiter for the AC50 in its two forms: for bass and guitar.
These amps have three ECC83s and one ECC81 in the preamp instead of three and one ECC82, boosting the overall gain of the amp considerably.
Build quality is excellent. One way to tell an early Arbiter AC50 from a later one is by the presence or not of a voltage selector. Later amps did away with them.
For the warranty literature enclosed with these amps, see this page.
A register of amps
Date of manufacture indicated by the first two digits on the serial number plate
Serial number 75075176
Produced in 1975. Thanks to Herbert for the pictures
Date indicated by the first digit on the serial number plate: "5" = 1975, "6" = 1976
Schematic drawn up in 1976, presumably close to the end of the production run.
Serial number 5617
Serial number 5639
Serial number 5794
Serial number 6114
Produced in 1976.
Serial number 6127
Serial number 6148