Price paid: £ 265
Purchased from: ebay
Features: I assume it's made in 2009 or so. Australian designed, unsure where made. Has clean channel with EQ and 'crunch' button, 'mean' channel with EQ and added 'filth' button/knob (ya gotta love the Aussies, haven't ya?). Channel switching via button or 4-button footswitch (extra, have ordered one, waiting for it). Separate spring reverb control. Has effects loop with level button, 4 & 8 ohm speaker outs, high & low inputs, standby & power switch, blue jewel LED for on.
All tube amp with 2 x 12AX7 & 1 12AT7 preamp tubes, 2 x EL34 power tubes. Build quality is FANTASTIC at this price point as is the range of tones available. Reverb isn't too powerful but is more than adequate. I've played it barely cranked in my study at home, sounded fantastic to me. Am now selling my Vox VT50 & footswitch (which I must stress I LOVE) as I am a tube convert - not as flexible as my Vox but just has those added tones and harmonics only a full tube amp can do. Only had it a day but love it already! All my ratings will reflect the price of this baby... // 10
Sound: I use this with a PRS SE custom trem, stock humbuckers and a Vintage V100BB, again stock. Sounds awesome with both of them. Beautiful, warm and chiming cleans, crunchy OD through to verging on full on metal tones - it doesn't reach Mesa territory and I'm no expert but it sure has a 'Marshall' sound to it (the EL34's probably help!). I have to say I'm blown away by the build quality and tones from this thing for the price, it feels like it should cost a lot more. I haven't cranked it loud enough to test the clean headroom but at 50 watts all tube I reckon it has plenty. I also can't see me having much need for OD pedals as the mean & filthy channels are plenty obnoxious. Wahey! // 10
Reliability & Durability: It seems reliable but I've had it a day. I can't wait to gig with it. I'll post more comments down the line on this...the cabinet is solid, the tubes are protected by a metal grille at the back of the amp, the blue tolex covering is really good and distinctive, the chrome face panel and knobs look amazing. It really does outweigh its price point on this alone. // 10
Overall Impression: I play clean jazzy & jangly (clean bits of Opeth and Porcupine Tree, jazz, pop etc) to blues to rocky crunch to hard rock to thrash and screaming metal. It can do them all apart from the extreme high gain brutality - it doesn't quite have the bite of high end high gain amps - but then again I haven't cranked it loudly, so maybe it does. I'd be happy to play death metal or whatever just using the mean & filth channels. They stay defined even at full gain. Oh, and it cleans up BEAUTIFULLY when you roll your guitar vol back. I'm a happy man! Ashton should be killing the UK lower end tube market with amps like this. Get one! // 10