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Rivera Amplification TBR-3 Hammer 120 Stereo Power Amp

Sound Quality

I use a custom made full-maple Neubauer Beelzebub, maple bolt-on neck with a Schaller Golden 50, now a DiMarzio MegaDrive, and a Les paul Standard without any modifications. I play an ADA MP1 preamp and a t.c.electronics GForce FX processor. The only noise is there produced by the preamp - as the t.c.gate shuts down, there is NOTHING coming out of the amp. This unit is just incredible... my Laney VH100R just hisses in any setting... The amp doesn´t distort, even at highest volumes - it is, so to say, almost sort of a reference amp, it spits out what you feed it, very precisely. Maybe that´s why they aren´t sold in our country...VERY expensive here and not any shitty preamp you connect sounds pleasant, but this isn´t what a good power amp should do!! The "Focus" control is a very useful one - it lets you control the amount your speakers are allowed to move, to create a very open and loud, or a more set-back, but precise sound. May help you when using different sorts of cabinets.


This thing is built for eternity. Nothing more to say. Tubes of course may let you down, but even if- just use the other half of the amp it one fails in live situations... your stereo fx are ruined, but at least you can play! Oversized output transformers are probably as good as immortal.

General Comments

I´m now playing since 11 years, always metal, other styles in addition when studying Guitar. I owned a Marshall 8080 Valvestate, zoom 1010. zomm 3030 FX processors (suck), I still own a JCM800 LS head, Laney VH100R head, ADA microTube Stereo PA, DiLarios 200W Stereo PA Amp, 2 Laney 320W cabinets, 1 Marshall jcm900 cab, 1 Marshall JCM800 1960 cab, a Hughes&Kettner Tubeman, two ADA MP1 preamps, a Shure "The Guitarist" wireless, ART X-15 Ultrafoot MIDI controller, Planet Waves Cables, D´Addario XL strings tuned to Bb, Pickboy Ceramic Picks...Neubauer Beelzebub, maple bolt-on neck with a Schaller Golden 50, now a DiMarzio MegaDrive, and a Les paul Standard, Kramer Randy Rhoads, Ibanez EX 370.


I finally made the step to top-of-the-line Equipment. So the Rivera was my very first choice, a legend since I first "met" one.

If it were stolen, it would break me! I took pains (200 Euros taxes+340 USD transport) to get one finally, and I don´t know if I could ever find one again. IF so, I would go and get it - no matter how. These amps were a legend to me, and I know why.

There´s nothing I hate about this amp - it is handmade and of finest, though rugged quality. The only thing that may distract from instant happiness is its heaviness.... 50lbs!! But this just emphasizes on its quality.

I compared it with the equipment I own, and with a Mesa 90:90. All of these units lack the FOCUS control and aren´t in the least as versatile and full of features. You can get all sorts of old Fender&Marshall Sounds (Paul Rivera once built these amps...) and you can build modern, bonecrushing Metal Power. No compromise!

I wish I had got a TBR-5, as these have 2x 180 Watts, but the deafening 2x60 Watts of my Hammer 120 are enough by far!!!


If you find one, go and get it! They are no longer built as production costs were way too high. But beware - if the equipment you use PRE is {censored}, the Hammer120 will smash it right in your face&choke it down your throat! Play Guitar in God-Mode *lol*

Value for a used amp is TOP. This thing won´t let you down and it looks awesome - oldschool but brutal! 4HE of domination!

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