This page was last updated: January 31, 2017
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Vintage Constructed Amplifier Transformers By Magnetic Components, Inc.
What Is ClassicTone
& Who Is Magnetic Components, Inc.?
ClassicTone is a new line of vintage constructed amplifier transformers by Magnetic Components, Inc. ClassicTone is the culmination of our decades of experience producing hundreds of thousands of our fine custom amplifier transformers for the amplifier industry. We have been in business since 1943 in the Chicago area and have vast knowledge of quality transformer manufacturing for the military and amplifier industry. For many years now we have been producing our transformers for many known amplifier OEM's and resellers. In many cases, they are used in the OEM's own amplifier applications. In other cases, our transformers are resold as unidentified, USA made, generic, no name brands or under reseller/OEM brand names. You may have one of our transformers in your amplifier now.
Why ClassicTone? We realized that there was a large void in the consumer amp transformer market. We realized that many of the amplifier transformers available on the market were produced with compromises in construction methods, materials and other manufacturing shortcuts. As a result, they may not help provide that wonderful tone of the classic amp transformers from the 1950s and 1960s. It also was apparent that there really was no one amplifier transformer manufacturer that provided great overall value by offering a combination of both good pricing and good quality.
As a result, ClassicTone was born! The decision was made to expand upon our custom amplifier transformer manufacturing expertise and make a splash into the consumer amplifier transformer market by offering our ClassicTone line of vintage constructed amp transformers. We now could make our great transformers available to the consumer and smaller amplifier OEM at fantastic prices through our new exclusive ClassicTone Distributors. Also, larger amplifier manufacturers could purchase our fine product directly from us at our great manufacturer's direct pricing. Please compare our prices and quality with the competition. You will realize our amp transformers are an incredible value!
Our mission is to bring a high quality, low cost and correctly produced amplifier transformer to you. Since they are produced like the classic originals, these transformers should help your old or new amp achieve that "classic tone" of the great amplifiers from the classic amplifier era of the 1950s and 1960s. We believe we have achieved our mission by introducing our fine line of ClassicTone vintage constructed amplifier transformers!
Why Buy ClassicTone?:
The 10 Reasons
Paper Layer Wound Transformers!
Due to their amazing tone and performance characteristics, we paper layer wind all of our transformers....the preferred method of all tube amp purists and true audiophiles. Paper layer transformer winding (a.k.a. paper bobbin, paper tube, paper section, etc.) is the way these were produced in the classic amplifier era of the 1950s and 1960s. Current European, Canadian, Asian and most USA and Mexican manufacturers do not paper layer wind their transformers like the vintage era originals. Why? Paper layer winding requires special winding equipment and expert winding skills. This winding technique is slowly becoming a lost art form. We still do it the preferred and correct way. We have been winding this way for over 70 years. Since we have been manufacturing transformers for the musical instrument amplifier industry for decades now, we are experts in this field!
It's All About the Tone!!!
Paper layer wound transformer coil showing the electrical grade, paper tube (a.k.a. paper bobbin) with the individual layers of neutral, electrical grade paper insulation between the layers of copper magnet wire.
Reason # 2:
It's In The Winding!
Efficiency, Consistency and Replication
Some of our competitors claim that their amplifier transformers are somehow better because they hand wind their transformers on nylon bobbins one at a time with the assistance of a motor driven, single headed, inefficient machine. Not only is this not the way they wound them in the classic amp era, but this is far from desirable as it drives up the price of the transformer. It also prevents them from being wound the same way every time since it relies heavily on the individual winder's ability to randomly guide and place the wire by hand on the individual nylon bobbin as it rotates around on the machine.
Reason # 3:
Good Quality & Price=
Are you tired of overpaying in order to receive a quality transformer? Our transformers are a great value since they are a combination of high quality and low cost due to production efficiencies without shortcuts. This has been learned from decades of manufacturing transformers in the tens of thousands for major amplifier manufacturers. Also, we purchase our high quality materials in bulk at large discounts and pass these savings on to you. In these tough times, get the most out of your hard earned money. We want to bring our great product to you at a reasonable price! Try one. We believe you will be pleasantly surprised at the amazing overall value of our transformers. We believe you will use our product exclusively thereafter. Why so cheaply priced? Because we can!
Reason # 4:
ClassicTone Vintage, ClassicTone Plus and ClassicTone Custom Series Offer Great Features and Varieties
The ClassicTone Vintage series of vintage constructed amplifier transformers are manufactured true-to-original specifications. These are true drop-in replacement transformers for classic amps or can be used for new applications. Unlike many of our competitors, we do not use cheap materials, incorrect specifications and construction methods. Since we do not make such compromises, our transformers will function better and last longer than the other so-called replacement transformers. We provide value for your money!
Our ClassicTone Vintage series Marshall* Plexi choke. Paper layer wound like the vintage era originals!
Chassis hole drilling or modification is not required on our ClassicTone Vintage series type amplifier transformers as well as many Plus series transformers. Many so-called replacement transformers require chassis modification.
A ClassicTone Vintage series Fender* type audio output transformer with proper raised mounting and correct mounting centers in "feet". No chassis modification required.
The ClassicTone Plus series of vintage constructed amplifier transformers features alternative versions of the classic amplifier transformers. These consist of general purpose or universal type replacements and/or upgrades. Many of this series power transformers feature international voltage tap versions of many classic transformers. Also, many of this series audio output transformers offer versions with alternate or additional impedances. All of our Plus series are constructed using the same vintage construction methods and premium materials as our Vintage series of transformers. Many of these also do not require chassis modification.
A ClassicTone Plus Series Fender* type power transformer with multinational / all world taps
The ClassicTone Custom series of vintage constructed amplifier transformers are for the amplifier manufacturer or reseller looking for that perfect transformer for their requirements that cannot be found in our ever growing standard ClassicTone line of products. These can be custom variants of the "classics" or completely different or new custom amplifier transformers to your exact specifications and requirements or we can replicate an existing sample if provided to us. We do not offer the ClassicTone Custom transformers through our distributors and require an 18 piece minimum. Serious inquiries only.
Reason # 5:
As a USA military transformer manufacturer since 1943, we adhere to the stringent military quality system MIL-I-45208 in the production of all of our product including your amplifier transformers! We produce all of our transformers using military type procedures and processes. This starts with our ordering / incoming receiving procedures and includes various in-process tests, elaborate military type varnishing processes, etc. and finishes with your transformer being 100% final tested before it is shipped.
Reason # 6:
It's About the Iron!
Efficient and Consistent Steel Laminating Process!
Most transformers require a process called laminating which consists of numerous individual pairs of "E" and "I" shaped steel laminations being interleaved in order to build a lamination stack within the coil. Unlike some competitor's claims, hand laminating is not desired because it is inefficient, inconsistent and drives up cost of the transformer. We use automated laminating machines to laminate our transformers for efficiency and consistency.
After the coil is laminated, we use pneumatic squaring fixtures to firmly and evenly compress all of our transformer steel lamination stacks. This consistently and tightly forms each individual interleaved pair of steel laminations within the overall lamination stack. This also keeps gaps between the steel lamination to an absolute minimum. We do not hand hammer our lamination stacks like many other transformer manufacturers since it distorts the lamination. This may adversely effect inductance and core losses. It also causes unsightly dents on the steel lamination.
Reason # 7:
Tightly Formed Copper Flux Bands!
Since copper flux bands are required on many power transformers, we tightly form and solder them using a special fixture. This helps eliminate the mechanical buzzing and noise associated with cheaply made transformers.
A power transformer with tightly formed copper flux band & tightly compressed interleaved, M-6 grain oriented steel lamination...The best available!
Reason # 8:
We use premium grades of steel laminations made right here in the Chicago area for cool running and peak electrical performance on all of our audio output transformers and most of our power transformers.
We use pre-tinned, UL listed, RoHS compliant "Topcoat" lead wire that is made right here in the Chicago area. "Topcoat" provides a consistent coating throughout and prevents fraying for ease of soldering.
Made with pre-tinned, UL listed, "Topcoat" lead wire
All of our amplifier transformers are RoHS compliant.
All hardware on our transformers are supplied with quality finishes such as black oxide, zinc plating and electro-tin coating. Some of our competitor's provide their hardware raw which is not appropriate for a "classic" type constructed transformer.
We use high quality, high temperature, varnish resin.
Reason # 9:
We use a special formulated varnish resin to impregnate our transformers. This varnish is a high quality, custom formulated, high temperature (Class H), high thermal conductivity and 100% solids varnish resin. Our varnish does not contain solvents like most off-the-shelf varnish used by many of our competitors and as a result, gives our transformers a vintage appearance. This resin provides a cooler, quieter running unit with no trapped moisture that may shorten the life of the transformer.
Our military style varnish impregnation process is also special. We preheat, vacuum varnish and oven bake cure our transformers for 8 hours for incredible mechanical and electrical performance. In combination with our special varnish, our varnishing process also helps eliminate trapped moisture. Most transformer manufacturers do not bother to preheat their transformers, varnish the units under a vacuum and/or oven bake cure for a full 8 hours to save time. We do it correctly and as a result, your ClassicTone transformer should last much longer than our competitor's transformers!
Reason # 10:
Made In USA!
Proudly made by Magnetic Components, Inc. in the USA for over 70 years. We are located in the Chicago area which is considered the original home of the USA transformer, radio / HiFi and TV electronics industry. Also, USA has always been the leader in electronic design and innovation. Many current amp transformers are now manufactured abroad in places such as China, India, Canada, Mexico, etc. Some transformer manufacturers even claim to be made in the USA even though they actually manufacture their transformers in foreign countries. They may consider themselves a USA company only because they have an office headquarters here. In these hard times, please insist on USA made products. It is important to question the origin of other amp transformer manufacturers.
Why Buy ClassicTone?
When you purchase a ClassicTone transformer by Magnetic Components, Inc., you are buying a product made in the USA to the highest quality standards. Our transformers are reasonably priced and built using the proper vintage construction methods! Does your current transformer supplier offer this? I'm sure you would agree, they should.
We use the actual vintage paper layer winding machines to produce our transformers. These well maintained vintage winding machines are the exact same ones that we used to wind some of the classic vintage transformers in the 1950s and 1960s!
With the precise guidance of our highly skilled and experienced paper layer winding technicians, our automatic, multiple coil, paper layer winding machines provide efficiency, consistency and replication! This method of winding will result in consistent spacing, wire tension and uniform wire traversing. Every coil will therefore be identical from winding to winding, turn to turn, layer to layer and coil to coil. Electrically, this method provides constant inter-winding capacitance, intra-winding capacitance and leakage inductance. All of these factors will positively effect the high frequency response of a transformer. This is one of many reasons why our transformers will perform the same in your amp as the vintage era originals. We use the same professional winding techniques and equipment that were used to manufacture the original classic amplifier transformers!