70s Traynor Bassmaster YBA-1A MKII 90-watt tube head. Loaded with Groove Tubes, $799!

The Traynor YBA-1A MKII is a vintage all-tube bass amplifier head that has garnered a reputation for its powerful sound, robust construction, and versatility. Originally designed for bass guitar, the YBA-1A MKII is equally revered by guitarists for its rich tone and dynamic response. Known for its clean headroom and musical overdrive, this amp head is a staple in both vintage and modern musical setups.

Key Features:

Amplifier Type:

  • All-Tube Design: The YBA-1A MKII features an all-tube design, providing warm, rich tones characteristic of classic tube amplifiers.
  • Output Power: Delivers 90 watts of output power, making it suitable for a wide range of performance settings, from small clubs to larger venues.

Preamp and Power Amp:

  • Tube Complement: Equipped with three 12AX7 preamp tubes and two 6CA7 (EL34) power tubes, offering a dynamic and responsive sound.
  • Dual Channels: Features two channels (Normal and Bright) with independent volume controls, allowing for versatile tone shaping.

Controls and Interface:

  • Tone Controls: Includes Bass, Middle, Treble, and Presence controls, enabling precise adjustment of the amplifier’s tonal character.
  • Input Jacks: Two inputs per channel (High and Low) to accommodate different instruments and playing styles.

Build and Design:

  • Rugged Construction: Built with a durable, roadworthy chassis designed to withstand the rigors of regular use and touring.
  • Classic Aesthetics: Features a vintage design with traditional Traynor styling, appealing to both vintage amp enthusiasts and modern players.

Sound Characteristics:

  • Clean Headroom: Known for its clean, articulate sound at lower volumes, making it ideal for jazz, blues, and clean playing styles.
  • Rich Overdrive: Delivers a warm, musical overdrive when pushed, suitable for rock, blues, and heavier genres.
  • Versatile Tone: Capable of producing a wide range of tones, from sparkling cleans to thick, saturated overdrive.


  • Live Performance: Ideal for live performances due to its powerful output and robust construction.
  • Studio Recording: Suitable for studio use, providing high-quality tones for recording sessions.
  • Guitar and Bass: Versatile enough to be used by both guitarists and bassists, making it a valuable addition to any musician’s gear collection.


  • Output Power: 90 watts
  • Tube Complement: 3 x 12AX7 preamp tubes, 2 x 6CA7 (EL34) power tubes
  • Channels: Two (Normal and Bright)
  • Controls: Volume (per channel), Bass, Middle, Treble, Presence, Master Volume
  • Inputs: Two inputs per channel (High and Low)
  • Dimensions: Approximately 24″ x 10.5″ x 8.5″ (61 cm x 27 cm x 22 cm)
  • Weight: Approximately 40 lbs (18 kg)

Country of Manufacture:

  • Canada: The Traynor YBA-1A MKII was manufactured in Canada, ensuring high standards of quality and craftsmanship.

Notable Features:

  • All-tube design with 90 watts of output power
  • Dual channels with independent volume controls
  • Comprehensive tone controls including Bass, Middle, Treble, and Presence
  • Rugged construction with vintage aesthetics
  • Versatile enough for both guitar and bass

Notable Users:

  • Alex Lifeson (Rush): The legendary guitarist of Rush is known to have used Traynor amps, including the YBA-1, early in his career. The amp’s powerful, clean tones and dynamic response were ideal for his intricate playing style.
  • Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine, Audioslave): Tom Morello is known for his innovative guitar techniques and unique sound. He has used the Traynor YBA-1 to achieve some of his iconic tones, especially in the studio.
  • Kevin Drew (Broken Social Scene): As part of the influential indie band Broken Social Scene, Kevin Drew has used the YBA-1 to achieve the rich, textured guitar sounds that define the band’s sound.
  • J Mascis (Dinosaur Jr.): Known for his heavy use of vintage gear, J Mascis has utilized the Traynor YBA-1 for its powerful overdrive and clean tones, contributing to Dinosaur Jr.’s distinctive sound.

Other Notable Users:

  • Rhett Miller (Old 97’s): As the lead singer and guitarist for the alt-country band Old 97’s, Rhett Miller has used the YBA-1 to achieve a variety of tones, from sparkling cleans to gritty overdrive, fitting the band’s dynamic range.
  • Elliott Smith: The late singer-songwriter was known for his emotive and intricate guitar work. Smith utilized the Traynor YBA-1 to complement his acoustic and electric guitar tones, adding depth and warmth to his recordings.

The Traynor YBA-1A MKII is a vintage all-tube bass amplifier head that offers powerful, versatile tones and robust construction. With its all-tube design, dual channels, and comprehensive tone controls, the YBA-1A MKII is suitable for a wide range of musical applications, from live performances to studio recordings. Whether you’re a guitarist or bassist, this amp head delivers the rich, dynamic sound and reliability that Traynor amps are known for. Its vintage design and high-quality craftsmanship make it a valuable addition to any musician’s gear collection.

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