“From 1993 to 2004 those amps were over half of our business”: How the Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier defined the high-gain guitar sound of the 1990s

A Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier amplifier
(Image credit: Future)

No single product played a bigger role in defining the sound of rock in the Nineties than the Mesa/Boogie Dual Rectifier guitar amp. The great irony of this is that the Dual Rectifier was originally conceived to satisfy the demands of metal and hard rock guitarists during the late Eighties, when the high-gain amplifier wars went into overdrive.

Faced with increasing competition from companies like Soldano and a growing legion of techs who shifted from modifying amps to offering their own boutique models, Mesa started work on the Dual Rectifier in 1989, developing two distinct prototype circuits (Revisions A and B) before settling upon the Revision C circuit and officially introducing the Dual Rectifier in February 1992.

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Chris Gill

Chris is the co-author of Eruption - Conversations with Eddie Van Halen. He is a 40-year music industry veteran who started at Boardwalk Entertainment (Joan Jett, Night Ranger) and Roland US before becoming a guitar journalist in 1991. He has interviewed more than 600 artists, written more than 1,400 product reviews and contributed to Jeff Beck’s Beck 01: Hot Rods and Rock & Roll and Eric Clapton’s Six String Stories.