Palomino V16 Review

manufacturer: Crate date: 04/14/2011 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Crate: Palomino V16
The Palomino V16 is a little 15W Class A tube screamer loaded with toneful soul and wrapped in Sunday's best. The V16 combo amplifier delivers instant response with great touch sensitivity.
 Sound: 9.3
 Overall Impression: 9.3
 Reliability & Durability: 9
 Features: 8
 Overall rating:
 8.9 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.9 
 Users rating:
 8.9 
 Votes:
 16 
reviews (3) 3 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9
Palomino V16 Reviewed by: SSL27, on february 25, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 300

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: This amp would have to be made in either late '06 or early '07 considering this is not a very old model. I play mostly jazz, blues, modern rock, classic rock, and a bit of older metal like Black Sabbath, and this amp can handle all of those except some of Sabbath's heavier stuff, but it'd be more than able to with an overdrive. There is only one channel, which is unfortunate because I could really benefit from separate clean and overdrive channels. The only other feature that I wish it had is an effects loop, but that's not much of a problem considering my pedal setup is pretty small. It's only 15 watts, but that is more than enough for what I do. I mostly play in the bedroom, but I will wander out to jam with my drummer friend and a couple of friends' bands. Overall it's a pretty straight forward amp to use. // 8

Sound: I run a Danelectro 56 U2 Re-Issue with single coil lipstick pickups through a Boss DS-1, Dunlop GCB-95, EHX Little Big Muff, and a Zoom 2100 into this amp. Most of the time I'll leave everything except the Muff out, because I like the tone I get from this amp so much. This amp would suit any Classic Rock or Blues player perfectly, and at a good price. I've only ever had one problem with noise, but that was because I was using a bad power supply for my Zoom. It is more than capable of both classic and modern rock sounds, and at about 9 o'clock on the gain knob you can get a nice AC/DC'esque crunch. The EQ isn't as responsive as I'd like, but it works well, and like stated earlier, the amp is capable of getting up to older metal sounds distortion-wise. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I've had no problems with the reliability of it, and I can safely say that'd I could definitely use it for a gig without a backup. The only thing I've done to it was replace two of the preamp tubes with a couple of Vintage RCA 12AX7's I had around, and I have to say it greatly improved my tone. // 10

Overall Impression: The amp fits my playing styles perfectly. I've been playing for about a year and a half, but I'm very knowledgeable gear-wise. If it were lost or stolen I wouldn't buy another one, but instead buy a higher end amp, because quite frankly, this isn't the amp that is going to end all amps. I had to decide between this an a Fender Blues Junior, and I'm really glad I ended up with this one. The only thing I wish it had is a second channel, but overall it is a great amp for the price. // 9

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overall: 8.8
Palomino V16 Reviewed by: MichaelOfCanton, on august 11, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 350

Purchased from: Musiciansfriend.com

Features: It was made in america in '06 and came equipped with groove tubes (three 12ax7s with two el84s). Single channel with gain, volume, reverb, three band EQ, and a boost Switch for more bass. Single input. Boost is pretty useless if you can work the EQ knobs. Spring reverb is average at best but bearable. Plenty loud enough to play with a drummer and bassist. // 7

Sound: I'd describe the sound as the bastard child of an AC15 and a Blues Junior. Not very high gain but plenty enough for classic rock if you don't mind turning the volume up as necessary. It gravitates towards semi-clean jazz to moderately aggressive blues type tone but is pretty versatile for classic rock and some hard rock. If you want metal, you can use a pedal to get close but it's in foriegn territory. You can get an excellent imitation of that AC15 rude upper mid chime by maxing the treble and mid and turning low to zero. The speaker is pretty bass heavy and gets worse with incresing volume (another reason the boost switch is useless) and can get a plain sloppy if the bass is high when it's pushed hard. IMO the center frequencies of the EQs aren't the most helpful and I would suggest a 6-10 band EQ if you're picky. It's very touch sensitive. It's almost like you can have two channels by picking hard or lightly. This might not be the most versatile amp for jumping genres but in it's comfort zone you can dial up the most mellow jazz to a blaring take no prisoners scream to salute those Who are about to rock. Personally, I love it. // 10

Reliability & Durability: No problems whatsoever so far. Well I did have to buy a little 4 inch fan to put behind it to cool the power tubes so they last a little while (class A is wide open all the time, gets pretty hot). Construction is solid as are the electronics. No standby Switch which is annoying. I have to turn down volume and gain all the way before turning it on than leave it there for 30 seconds or so to try to be easy on it but I feel like I'm abusing it anyway. The tubes have lasted 6 months of daily use so far so it can't be too bad. // 8

Overall Impression: I love this amp to death. Since I've had it every ohter amp I've plugged into is dissapointing. I find it to be the perfect Tool to get the sounds I like out of my guitar. Keep in mind that I lean towards classic rock and blues in my sound prefrences. If you want extreme distortion this amp can maybe do a decent impression but that's not what it's built for. If you want ballsy class A tube sound and not a tube distortion pedal or an amp simulator mulitFX that's never quite right this is the perfect medicine. Plus, looking down the chrome grate on the top and seeing those 2 little EL84s glowing oarnge will put a smile on any guitarists face. // 10

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overall: 9
Palomino V16 Reviewed by: Strangeman86, on april 14, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 200

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: As the other reviewers said, one channel with gain, bass, middle, treble, master volume and reverb controls. 15 watts, EL84's in class A, etc... There's also a boost switch. Bought mine used, so no clue exactly when it was made. I'd like to compare this to the Palamino V18, supposedly they're pretty similar. The V16 was a model made specifically for Guitar Center (from the research I've done, I could be wrong). For my purposes, a fair feature set. // 9

Sound: I'm using mine with my Warmoth Tele with a single HighOrder T-top replica humbucker in the bridge. Another reviewer described the sound as a mix between an AC15 and a Blues Junior. I can't attest to the B. Junior part, as I've never heard one before. BUT, in my humble opinion, it gets close to a 5E3 sound after you have the gain over half way. Before noon the AC15 reference is pretty accurate, though this amp is a lot darker overall than an AC15. It takes my pedals very well, never sounding overloaded (which is great, because my Rothwell Switchblade hits the front end pretty hard). I replaced the AX7's the preamp with some AT7's to lower the gain a little bit and have some more clean headroom. Surprisingly it didn't lower the gain that much, but now there's a sweet spot between 10:30 and 11:30 on the gain knob that's just right for playing lightly, sweetly and pristinely clean or digging in and getting a nice gritty bark. I agree with one of the other reviewers that the speaker is the weak link of this amp (some might say it's the reverb, which is weak as well, but I don't use the reverb at all). I'm soon replacing the speaker in mine with an HM75 from Warehouse Guitar Speakers. I'll update my review after I test that out. I'll also test out the boost a little more once the swap is completed (it's kind of a 'fat boost' more than a gain boost, and does muddy up the speaker a little; but the higher power speaker I'm putting in should remedy that). I think the only complaint about the sound I have is that the amp doesn't like my little boost pedal for some reason (it just never sounds right to my hears with it on). Other than that I think it's a surprisingly good amp and I really wonder why Crate stopped making them. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I bought mine used from GC, and it was abused a little. Someone took the feet off the bottom, which I'll soon remedy. The only functional issue I have is that from about 0 to 1.5 on the master volume knob there's a small amount of audible 'scratch'. I've met a couple of other tube amps that have similar quirks, but it's usually on the presence knob. But that's the only issue I have. Time will tell how this second hand amp stands up. // 9

Overall Impression: It would be a great little amp for (as mentioned in other reviews) classic rock, blues and (if your pickups are low enough output) jazz even. But the amp likes to be played loudly and proudly overall. The fact that it handles my pedals well makes it a great amp for me, otherwise I would have sold it quickly. While it's not the most amazing amp I've ever heard, it's a surprisingly GOOD amp, especially for the money. I think if it ever broke I'd probably have a hand-wired version built with a few less knobs. // 9

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