INTERVIEW: Mike Fortin of Randall Amplifiers

Randall Amplifiers has been home to many talented engineers over the years, starting with Gary Sunde and even including Bruce Egnater who invented the MTS modular series. In particular the company has long been an innovator in the world of high-gain amps. So who do you turn to when you want to kick it up to a new level? Randall Brand Director Joe Delaney enlisted the services of world-renowned heavy metal amp engineer Mike Fortin to reinvent Randall for the 21st Century. Coming from the likes of Korg/Marshall USA and Yamaha (and of course his own Fortin brand amps), Mike understands distortion. Randall purchased two of these designs – the NATAS and MEATHEAD – and these are now known as the THRASHER and 667. But that’s not all; Fortin has used those amps as springboards for new designs too, including the SATAN signature model for Six Feet Under/Feared guitarist Ola Englund, the NULLIFIER for Anthrax’s Scott Ian, and the forthcoming CAGE 103 for Metallica’s Kirk Hammett and a new line for Meshuggah’s Fredrik Thordendal. I caught up with Fortin to chat about what makes his amps tick. Read More …

Randall hires amp wizard Mike Fortin, discontinues MTS series

Wow, the end of an era and the start of a new one. Randall is discontinuing the MTS modular line (which includes preamp modules for signature artists Kirk Hammett, Scott Ian and George Lynch). The company recently announced the hiring of Mike Fortin, founder of Fortin Amplification,to craft a new series of high-end, high gain all-tube amps including the new 150 watt Kirk Hammett signature model head. The photo above appears to be one of Fortin’s six-channel Meathead amps but with a Randall logo, which is serving as the jumping-off point for the Hammett amp.

Here’s the press release:

Randall Amplification Announces Mike Fortin as Exclusive Design Engineer

Chicago, April, 2012 – Randall Amplification would like to formally introduce Mr. Mike Fortin as an exclusive design engineer for Randall Amplification. Mike, as the founder of Fortin Amplification has forged a worldwide reputation for creating cutting edge high gain amplifier designs. We are excited to have Mike be a part of our team!

Mike’s first priorities will be a new multi-channel, 150 watt Kirk Hammett Signature Model Head and a whole range of high end, high gain all tube amplifiers to be manufactured in North America. The new Fortin designed series of Randall amplifiers will replace the discontinued MTS Series.

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