Gary Moore’s Soldano SLO100 Amp

Gary was seen using Soldano SLO100 amps in the early 90s during the Still Got the Blues and After Hours tours. Apparently, he only used the clean channel on the amps and used either a Guv’nor or a TS10 to add the punch to it.

Marshall Guv’nor Pedal ( Mk 1), Ibanez TS10 Tube Screamer Pedal, Gary tended to only use the “clean” channel on the SLO100 with the crunch switch in, rather than switch channels on the amp. Any further ‘crunch/boost/distortion” would be added by one of the above pedals.

Various sources online, originally posted on Gary’s website

Based on photos, it seems that Gary stopped using the Soldano amps altogether around 1993/94.


One of the two (perhaps more?) Soldano SLO100 amps used by Gary was sold through Bonhams in 2017. According to the auction page, this was the spare Soldano, used occasionally by Moore in cases where something went wrong with the main amp.

The amp, serial number 89258, was sold for $12,000.

Photo credit: Bonhams.

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1 year ago

Interesting that he’d only use the clean channel on one of the best high gain amps ever made. Sounded awesome, whatever he did!

6 months ago

He liked to have the ability to use the volume knob to get to an almost clean sound. He thought he could always add in front of the amp, Blues Alive one of the greatest live recordings/performances of all time! I was into Metal in the 90s and discovered I could get the best mega crunch sounds doing the same thing, slightly dirty clean amp, gate -> mid boost EQ -> Tube Screamer. Heavier than a recto and I could turn it all off and roll down volume/front pickup for clean! I guess essentially building a 2 channel system with pedals, like Gary!

2 months ago

The SLO clean channel with the Crunch switch on is definitely not a “clean” channel (unless you set the gain below 4). It truly is a “Crunch” channel that provides a JCM800-level of gain.
The single-channel 20 watt Astroverb/Atomic is based on the SLO’s crunch channel. The Reverb-o-sonic has the clean and crunch channels.

In every YouTube demo I have watched of the SLO I don’t care for the overly-compressed and distorted mushy sound of the Overdrive channel at all (and I do like metal). It’s not hi-fi.
The Crunch channel is the “Hi-fi”, crunchy and smooth “modded JCM800 channel”.

I run gain at 9 (not 11) and just barely boost it with a tiny tiny bit of level from a BOSS BD-2 Blues Driver with the drive on MIN (unless playing Alice In Chains) for a little extra chain saw edge.
2005 Barber Direct Drive for solos. Delay in the loop.

2 months ago

The Soldano Crunch channel (my astroverb) cleans up amazingly well with light picking, a minimal volume reduction or switching to a single-coil.

2 months ago

I just looked at Gary’s Soldano in the YouTube video “Gary Moore – Live Blues (1993) #13 “King Of The Blues”… and that is NOT an SLO. The SLO has the round knobs like in the picture that is on this page, the amp Gary is playing has 6 chicken head knobs, which means it is a single-channel Hot Rod 50 or Hot Rod 100 Soldano.
His settings appear to be: 7 on the preamp (which is EXACTLY where you want it to have tons of crunch from a humbucker and also the ability to totally clean it up with guitar volume and picking lighter), 8 on bass, mids appear to be maxed out (I think I read he was using EVM 12L speakers which are pretty neutral and not mid-heavy like most guitar speakers)… everything else appears to be at 7, the presence knob is hard to see, but looks to be at 6 or 7.

Last edited 2 months ago by MattLeedy