1 LATE 60S
By the time Cliff had decided he wanted to build his own guitar amplifiers, he had already studied electronics at college. Working in collaboration with Mat Mathias of Radio Craft – a radio repair shop in West Yorkshire – the first Orange amps were assembled in Mat’s native Huddersfield and were also branded Matamp. Meanwhile, the first Orange speaker cabinets were constructed in the basement of Cliff’s shop (where, in the early days, he would often sleep!).
From November 1968, fewer than 50 100-watt OR100 Orange Matamp units were completed, making them highly sought-after collector’s items. The very first amps were supplied to Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac for their US tour. The 200-watt OR200 appeared later in March 1969 and was powered by four 6550/ KT88 valves (double the number onboard the original OR100). That spring, the second version of the OR100 appeared and it came fitted with four EL34s, while the new 50-watt OR50 was driven by two EL34s.