Originally Posted by FFTT
Even though I'm personally still way more into 100% hand wired amps,
I would also check out the Tone Kings.
I had a Tone King, and it was most definitely NOT a Fender clone. It was a great amp, but not what I was looking for. They're loud like Fenders, and that's about it. It had the punch of a Vox and the power of a small Marshall combo, with an American tone. (I do not mean this to be read as a criticism in any way of a Tone King; they are very reliable, very giggable, very unique amps. I only mention that they didn't fit my desires at the time I bought mine, so take this with a grain of salt)
So, kinda Fender, but not really. There are a lot of great guys making "true" Fender clones, although even that can be debated (ad naseum, I'm sure) because most of them make minor design considerations to address the shortcomings of the original amp models.
My experience has been the closest Fender clones that I've played (and subsequently owned) have been Clark and Victoria amps. Both are fantastic. You cannot go wrong with a Clark. Notice I didn't contract my "cannot" because I was trying to emphasize that I find that Clarks are outstanding amps.
My Clark Piedmont, an (almost) exact replica of a 1959 & 1/2 5F6A Fender Bassman, (replete with cloth wound wires near the transformer, a 5AR4 rectifier, and a cabinet that buzzes against the chassis) is considered by many, many people to be
"The greatest guitar amp of all time". I love my Clark. BUT: I'm so damn worried about it being stolen, however irrational that may be, that I am loathe to gig with it. That being said, it has many scrapes and bruises from being gigged, so what the hell do I know.
On the other hand, my Vickie "Double Deluxe" isn't something Fender ever really built, but it certainly could have been. It's basicallly two Deluxe amps in dual mono.
Probably waay too much info, but I would describe my Double Deluxe as loud and extremely dynamic, while the Piedmont is very well behaved and predictable. They are both dynamite amplifiers, and while they're very similar, they're also different. The Double Deluxe I guess might
be a little more difficult to control in unskilled hands, but man what an amp. It literally punches above its weight. For most gigs I grab the Vickie, primarily due to its relative light weight. But when I'm feeling low, and feel like doing some dark music, I grab the Clark. This isn't to say that they're one trick ponies; just based on how I play, this is how I use them.
So long story short, Clark and Victoria. I've had incredible success, tonally, with both of them. I'd be torn between my amps and my guitars in a fire.
Edit: I feel I need to point out that both amps are more than adequate for my gigs. They both can do what I need them to, I just wrote about how I use them. Purely irrational and personal. FYI