NAMM 2024: Acoustic amps aren't cool? Taylor says otherwise with its Circa 74 guitar and vocal combo

Taylor Circa 74 amp
(Image credit: Taylor Guitars)

NAMM 2024: Taylor walks its own path with acoustic guitar design, and with a CEO and chief designer talent like Andy Powers at the wheel now it isn't any wonder. But acoustic amps? Not its thing. Until now.

And Taylor co-founder / former CEO Bob Taylor designed it, not Andy. The Circa 74 looks like the name suggests, and I love it already. As someone who spent years in a band lugging an acoustic amp combo wedge around, I'm not used to the words 'attractive' and 'cool' being associated with the object that I'd do hopeless battle against a drummer with. And yet, here we are – what a beauty the Circa 74 is!

No Tolex in sight: the case and stand are mahogany here. In fact, I'm wondering if a 'gear furniture' memo went around judging by Fender's new guitar and amp stands that also just surfaced. But it's much more than a visual statement: this is a passion project for Bob Taylor, with weight to its specs. 

A Class D solid state 150-watt 2-channel combo, weighing 24lbs without its stand, the Circa 74 features a 10-inch full-range speaker designed to accommodate acoustic guitar and vocalists. Each channel includes its own three-band EQ and reverb control. There's Bluetooth and auxiliary inputs for your backing tracks too, plus a headphone output. 

Taylor Circa 74

(Image credit: Taylor)

There was reportedly a huge amount of research involved in the amp to widen its usability and appeal for Taylor electro-acoustic guitar players, but also far beyond. Bob Taylor the Taylor team focussed on mellowing the high end with warmth as a priority and the company has even acknowledged the wider with presets for pickups and mics including Fishman, LR Baggs and K&K to Shure and Telefunken.

Taylor Circa 74 amp

The Fender Deluxe Amp Stand  (Image credit: Taylor)

This year marks 50 years of Taylor and the amp marks that, referencing back to the year co-founder Bob Taylor and Kurt Listug opened their small shop in Southern California back in 1974. 

The Taylor Circa 74 is $1,199. 

For more info visit Taylor Guitarsand Sweetwater

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.