In the Pre-Internet days there were very few ways to learn about amp models:Go to your local purveyor of guitar amps on a weekday with your guitar and try a few. Happy Hunting!
Guitar Player Magazine
Try friends’/relatives’/bandmates’ amps
Go to local guitar shops and try out every used or new amp that strikes your fancy
“Try before you buy” is always the best way to find the tone you’re looking for. Then it’s just a matter of doing some research to see how reliable/repairable it is.