Marshall guitar amp heads: what you need to know

Marshall JCM800
(Image credit: Future)

“The JMPs were born in the Plexi era – which is generally thought of as the period from the mid-60s up until the '70s when we were using Plexiglas plastic panels,” Marshall’s Steve Smith explains. “When Marshall first began building amps in the early '60s, we had the JTM45s. And then in the mid-'60s, 50- and 100-watt amps appeared, which evolved from the JTM45 – the model 1987 being a 50-watt amp, and the 1959 model a 100-watt amp. 

“Both of these models were originally available right up until 1981, although there aren’t many of the later ones around because people weren’t asking for them by then.

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Rod Brakes

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar WorldGuitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.