Tag Archives: Signature Model

EVH/Fender Wolfgang USA Edward Van Halen Signature Model

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Eddie Van Halen put out this model of guitar for people to enjoy after much interest in the EVH Gear label.

The continuous evolution of Eddie’s sound and tone over the years has had many twists and turns. The result is this, EVH’s signature model guitar. It is exactly what Eddie himself uses and plays today.

Eddie Van Halen is a living legend, as shown here in the special Smithsonian lecture for which he was an honourable guest at. He fully deserves the credit for his musical development, of the latest main development is the guitar next to him, which this article is about.

Guitarist Eddie Van Halen has been honored by the Smithsonian Institution for his contributions to American music. (Smithsonian Institution)

Picture courtesy https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/apr/2/eddie-van-halens-immigrant-take-on-american-rock-n/

So, what differs to the main line of EVH Wolfgang guitars? Coming in either an Ivory (White) or Stealth (Black) finish, there are a few key differences to the regular line of Wolfgangs here.

Firstly, the Basswood body is complemented with a Maple top. The pickups are also somewhat different from a traditional Wolfgang, being that the neck pickup is an Alnico 3 type humbucker, with the bridge pickup being an Alnico 2 humbucker. Prior to this, all EVH Gear guitars had Alnico 2 pickups on them in both positions.

The EVH Wolfgang USA Edward Van Halen Signature also comes in an Ivory finish. As mentioned by EVH marketer Matt Bruck, the Ivory version of this line of guitars is intended to be a halfway house between the Stealth version, and the Tour Relic Replica that Eddie recently played in 2015 on the live tour.

Wolfgang® USA Edward Van Halen Signature, Ebony Fingerboard, Ivory

Picture courtesy http://www.evhgear.com/gear/guitars/wolfgang-usa/wolfgang-usa-edward-van-halen-signature-ebony-fingerboard-ivory/

Additionally, there is the kill switch. This is on Eddie’s own guitar which acts as a push-push volume cut, which Eddie notably uses on “You Really Got Me” in live performances, and other songs he plays. Additionally, instead of the regular strap buttons come key clasps, ideal for the dog-lead style strap that Eddie Van Halen uses on his guitars for a more secure strap setting.

In any case, below are the specifications of the guitar, courtesy of the www.evhgear.com website:

GENERAL:

Model Name: Wolfgang® USA Edward Van Halen Signature, Ebony Fingerboard, Stealth

Model Number: 5107920868

Series: Wolgang® USA

MSRP: $4475.51

Colours: Choice between Ivory (White) or Stealth (Black)

BODY:

Body Shape: Wolfgang®

Body Binding: 5-Ply

Body Material: Basswood with Big Leaf Maple Top

Body Finish: Satin Urethane

Body Back: Basswood

Body Top: Big Leaf Maple

NECK:

Neck Material: Quartersawn Maple

Neck Shape: Wolfgang Backshape, .805” @ 3rd fret / .890 @ 12th fret

Scale Length: 25.5” (648 mm)

Fingerboard Radius: 12”-16” compound radius (304.8 mm to 406.4mm)

Number of Frets: 22

Fret Size: Vintage Stainless

String Nut: Floyd Rose® Locking

Nut Width: 1.650” (42mm)

Headstock: EVH®-Branded

Neck Plate: NA

Neck Finish: Hand-Rubbed Urethane Gel

Fingerboard: Ebony

Position Inlays: Pearloid Dot (Stealth) or Block Inlays (Ivory)

ELECTRONICS:

Bridge Pickup: EVH® Wolfgang® Humbucking

Neck Pickup: EVH® Wolfgang® AL3 Humbucker

Controls: EVH® BI Tech HPU Low Friction Volume, EVH® Bourns High Friction Tone

Pickup Switching: EVH Reverse-Style 3-Position Switching: Position 1: Neck Pickup, Position 2: Neck and Bridge, Position 3: Bridge.

Pickup Configuration: HH

HARDWARE:

Bridge: EVH®-Branded Floyd Rose® Locking Tremolo with EVH D-Tuna®

Tuning Machines: EVH® Branded

Orientation: Right-Hand

Hardware Finish: Chrome

Pickguard: N/A

Control Knobs: Black “Speed” Knobs

Switch Tips: Black

MISCELLANEOUS:

Strings: EVH® Branded (.009-.042 Gauges)

Is there anything Eddie Van Halen himself cannot do or has not done in his pursuit of the perfect tone? Eddie truly is the master of tone chasing and this guitar is the last step (so far) in that tone chasing nature of his. 

Picture courtesy https://spinditty.com/instruments-gear/EVH-Wolfgang-vs-Ibanez-JEM77

Notably, this guitar is the final step (to this date) of Eddie Van Halen’s most recent evolution, although future changes could be done to this guitar and line up of guitars. If you are fascinated by the most modern and recent addition to the evolution of the Brown Sound, or just need a fantastic shred style guitar to add to your collection, look no further.

 

References:

  1. Wolfgang® USA Edward Van Halen Signature. EVH Gear. http://www.evhgear.com/gear/guitars/wolfgang-usa/wolfgang-usa-edward-van-halen-signature-ebony-fingerboard-stealth/
  2. EVH Wolfgang USA Edward Van Halen Signature Electric Guitar – New From NAMM 2017. Musician’s Friend, YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WF0fdY3gAiI

Peavey 5150

There is little knowledge of specifically why Eddie Van Halen teamed up with Peavey to design, model and release his first signature line of amplifiers. The reasonable guess, however is obvious. Eddie was becoming dissatisfied with both his Marshall Superlead Amplifier and then later on, his Soldano SLO 100. Both had served a purpose for the time being, yet Eddie was prepared to go one step further and teamed up with the American company, known for heavy metal sounds called Peavey.

Both Eddie Van Halen and Hartley Peavey worked together on the 5150 line of amplifiers.

Picture courtesy http://www.harmonycentral.com/forum/forum/guitar/acapella-41/1126327-/page6

Hartley Peavey’s father had begun his own small music store prior to him discovering rock and roll. However, in 1965 Hartley Peavey decided to focus on rock and roll and after playing in bands, began creating products for rock musicians. With a particular focus for amps modelled and released with appeal for hard rock and heavy metal musicians alike, it came as no surprise that one Eddie Van Halen pursued the idea of the perfect metal amplifiers with the assistance of Peavey.

So by 1991, Eddie Van Halen had approached Peavey and they had agreed to assist with creating the 5150 line of amps. As early as the For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge album, a prototype of the Peavey 5150 was used, notably on “Poundcake”. Eddie began using Peavey’s amplifiers shortly afterwards onstage. By the time 1993 came around, the Peavey 5150 line of amplifiers were commercially released.

The fact that the 5150/6505 amplifiers have been extensively used over the years by a large variety of guitar players proves the ingenious construction and design of them.

Picture courtesy https://pointyguitar.wordpress.com/2012/04/21/ad-eddie-van-halen-for-peavey/

It immediately became popular amongst heavy metal players for creating a unique sound for that type of music. This was the beginning of the long relationship between EVH and Peavey that did not end very well in 2004. After this occurred, Peavey retained the rights to continue selling the amp, renamed the 6505 in commemoration of its 40th anniversary as a rock and roll company.

The amp itself is a powerful tube driven amp. Different versions of it come with slight modifications. But if you are hardcore about finding out what Eddie Van Halen wanted to experience with his amp, your best bet is to go for the traditional head and cabinet, the 6505 head and the 430B 412 Cabinet.

Eddie Van Halen used Peavey amplifiers for nearly 15 years, a remarkable length of time.

Picture courtesy http://picssr.com/photos/snowfreak91287/interesting?nsid=21186431@N04

Listed below are the stats for the 6505 head, courtesy of http://www.peavey.com:

  • High and low gain inputs
  • 120 watts (rms) into 16, 8 or 4 ohms (switchable)
  • 2-channel preamp switchable on front panel or remote footswitch
  • Rhythm channel: pre/post gain, bright and crunch switches
  • Five 12AX7 preamp tubes and four 6L6GC power amp tubes
  • Channels share 3-band EQ
  • Presence and resonance controls
  • Switchable post-EQ effects loop
  • Preamp output
  • Footswitch included
  • Lead channel: pre/post gain
  • Weight unpacked: 48 lb (21.772 kg)
  • Weight packed: 54 lb (24.494 kg)
  • Width packed: 12.25” (31.115 cm)
  • Height packed: 28.5” (72.39 cm)
  • Depth packed: 14” (35.56 cm)

Additionally, listed below are the stats for the 430B 412 Cabinet, courtesy of http://www.peavey.com:

  • Four 12″ Celestion Vintage 30 Speakers
  • 16 ohms
  • Heavy-duty casters
  • Vintage British sound
  • 18 ply Baltic Birch cabinet construction
  • 120 watts power handling
  • Stereo or mono operation
  • Weight Unpacked: 96.98 lb(43.99 kg)
  • Weight Packed: 107.25 lb(48.65 kg)
  • Width Packed: 32.75″(83.185 cm)
  • Height Packed: 35.75″(90.805 cm)
  • Depth Packed: 17.125″(43.4975 cm)

Despite the fact that Eddie no longer endorses or uses this particular set of amplifiers, Peavey have managed to continue to sell a legendary and historical amplifier with great success. This is largely due to its tone, being very popular amongst heavy metal and thrash metal players for its distinctive sound.

For more information, visit http://peavey.com/products/6505/

Hartley Peavey and Eddie Van Halen’s collaboration, although fruitful, did not last over time.

Picture courtesy http://www.vhnd.com/2014/02/15/aap52/ 

References:

  1. 2015. Peavey. Corporate profile. http://peavey.com/corporate/
  2. 2015. Peavey. 6505 – Forging the sound of aggression. http://peavey.com/products/6505/