Hughes and Kettner
Notable users of Hughes & Kettner products include Alex Lifeson and Tommy Thayer, who have signature amplifiers by the company (The TriAmp MKIII Alex Lifeson and the Duotone Tommy Thayer). Other Hughes and Kettner users are Peredur ap Gwynedd, Nuno Bettencourt, Tony Macalpine, Rocky George, Dave Sharman and Allan Holdsworth.
The tubes in Hughes & Kettner amps go through extensive tests; tests that push the tubes farther than they are rated.
Hughes and Kettner, up until recently, relied on its flagship Statesman family of amplifiers. Recently, however, Hughes & Kettner has worked to establish itself in the high-gain 50-100 watt amp head market. With the recent release of the Coreblade amplifier head, Hughes and Kettner is spending most of its resources in this market.
In September 2011, Hughes and Kettner released the Tubemeister 18, an 18-watt, 5 kilogram, head. Meant to appeal to the gigging guitarist that values versatility and mobility, this amplifier is small and works best with smaller cabinets, generally in the area of one or two 12-inch speakers. The amp has received a lot of attention for its “Power Soak” feature, which enables the player to leave volume and gain levels high yet limit the output of the head to more reasonable levels. It is clearly designed by Hughes and Kettner to attend to the guitarists that perform consistently at a variety of volumes, even sporting a “red box” output (XLR) and the option to mute the speaker output entirely (intended for mixing desks).