NT15H Vox Night Train 15 Amplifier
V112NT Vox Night Train 1x12" Speaker Enclosure

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When Vox named their new single channel 15 watt amplifier
the "Night Train" in 2011, I immediately thought of the late Ken Fischer and his fabulous hand wired "Trainwreck" boutique amps.

On the surface, a Trainwreck seemed like a very simple amplifier. Trainwreck amps did not include reverb, tremolo, multiple channels or master volume controls. Fischer felt that the circuits that supported these features harmed the tone of an amp. Only volume, treble, middle, bass and presence controls were provided.

Trainwreck amplifiers featured output stages that included either EL84 or EL34 power tubes, giving the amps a decided British tonal character. The Trainwreck "Liverpool" model utilized four EL84 power tubes, not unlike a Vox AC-30.

Ken Fischer died in 2006, but Trainwreck Amplification remains in operation, still producing some of the most desirable amplifiers in the world.

Tony Bruno
Another boutique amp builder from this period was Tony Bruno. Bruno specialized in hand wired amplifiers that evolved out of classic American "blackface," "tweed" and British amp designs. Every Tony Bruno Custom amp was assembled and tested by Bruno himself. Only the finest electronic components were used, including CTS control pots, American made capacitors, new old stock resistors and premium tubes. Bruno was not satisfied to merely play each newly completed amp in his shop, he also personally tested each with a live band. Bruno often made modifications and revisions to the circuits of a newly completed amp to further improve tone.

Beside building his own line of "Bruno" amplifiers, Tony Bruno collaborated with Vox on various amplifier designs, including the NT15H Night Train. Introduced in 2009, the design of the NT15H Night Train utilized the simple tone control layout that was characteristic of a Trainwreck amplifier. The Vox Night Train 15 was powered by two 12AX7 preamp tubes and two EL84 output tubes.

"Armored Lunchbox"
The Night Train featured an all metal two piece enclosure described in the 2009 Vox product catalog as resembling an "armored lunchbox." The printed circuit board and electronic components were mounted in the lower portion of the enclosure. The chrome plated, ventilated upper portion of the enclosure surrounded the tubes and transformers. This imaginative all metal enclosure design eliminated the additional cost, size and weight of a traditional wood head cabinet. At about 12" wide and only 17 pounds, the Night Train may be the most portable amplifier in its output class.

In addition to Gain, Treble, Middle, Bass and Volume controls, the NT15H Night Train included a "Bright/Thick" switch. The tone control circuitry was bypassed in the "Thick" position which in turn added extra gain to the preamplifier. A second three way switch toggled between standby and a 7.5 watt (triode) or 15 watt (pentode) output stage.

Carrying Bag
Vox packaged a padded carrying bag with a zippered lid into the purchase price of the NT15H Night Train amplifier.

Speaker Enclosure
The NT15H Night Train head included rear panel mounted 8 and 16 ohm speaker jacks, allowing it to be connected to most speaker enclosures. However, Vox designed the V112NT speaker
specifically for the NT15H Night Train head. The compact and open backed V112NT featured a single 12" 16 ohm Celestion Greenback speaker. Rated at 30 watts RMS, the V112NT Night Train speaker was ideally suited to the tonal characteristics and output of the NT15H head.

Owners Manuals
Click on the links below to download the Owner's Manual for the NT15H Night Train head and the V112NT enclosure. Credits
My thanks to Les Haynie of Blue Moon Music in Fayetteville AR for allowing me to photograph this NT15H Night Train from his inventory for the Vox Showroom. Blue Moon Music is one of the coolest vintage amp and guitar stores I have ever visited, and I encourage you to stop in if you are ever in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Model Dimensions Weight Retail Price
NT15H Night Train Head
~12" x ~7" x ~6.3"
17 lbs.
V112NT Speaker 19.6" x 8.2" x 16.4" 24 lbs.



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