Valvestate 8080 Review

manufacturer: Marshall date: 01/18/2012 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Marshall: Valvestate 8080
A two channel, 80 Watt, 1x12 combo with an ECC83 pre-amp valve in its Boost channel. It also features Contour, footswitchable Reverb, an Effects Loop plus a Clean/Crunch switch on the Normal channel and an OD1/0D2 option on the Boost. Thanks to its killer features, versatility and tone, the 8080 is currently Marshall's best seller.
 Sound: 8.3
 Overall Impression: 8.7
 Reliability & Durability: 8.5
 Features: 8.8
 Overall rating:
 8.6 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.6 
 Users rating:
 8.6 
 Votes:
 109 
reviews (6) pictures (2) 22 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.3
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: rapxeon, on november 17, 2005
8 of 8 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 356.701

Purchased from: Erie Music

Features: The amp was roughly made about 6 years ago. It does have some wear on the body but does have a lot of good features. It's an 80 Watt amplifier with great sound of distortion, for any type of music you play. The volume ability is amazing with it being the type of amps that Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin and many other bands prefer to use the good Marshall. The channels are clean and one with 5 different features such as contour, gain, bass, volume and middle. The different settings are a good wide of variety. It has an input for 1 guitar, I wish it had a dual input for another guitar. It's definitely an amp I am glad to have. // 9

Sound: The guitar I'm using is a Austin Vintage Rock Custom with 3 pickups. The sound with this amp and guitar provides a good combo for heavy metal or classic rock. The noise level for this varies on what place you are playing, for exmaple, my guitar and amp are both in the basement, so it really does sound good downstairs. But I had it in a small room, I had it on half volume and it shook the whole room. The sounds the amp can make will vary with different settings that you set it to, if you wish, you can have a heavy grind metal, or a smooth clean channel. Both which sound very good. The distortion on this amp is crazy, it matches almost exact to the band Rammstein's amplifiers if you have ever heard of the song Buck Dich, then you will know what I'm talking about. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I can really count on this amp if I were to play a gig, I don't know about the Backup though, I would play it safe and go for the backup, But if you want you could use this without a backup. The amp hasn't broken down since I've gotten it, So it's really good quality and hopefully it stays like that. // 7

Overall Impression: My overall impression is very good on this amp, for my style of music, it does the job, good. I've been playing for about a year and a few months, so it really does make the music sound good. I would definitly recommend this to anyone who wants to play with a reliable amp and wants a good clean sound out of it. If this were stolen or lost, I'd hunt them down and claim it back. I wouldn't want my 400$ to go down the hole. Favourite feature is the volume, this thing goes very loud, shakes my whole room if I play it. Very nice quality, and has a decent size of volume level if you just wanna play a little to yourself. Definitly if you have the money, pick this amp up, this will be one of your best amps you have had. // 9

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overall: 9.5
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: ledcaveman, on february 13, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Features: 2 channel half solid, half valve amp. Has gain, bass, mid, treble controls on normal channel, as well as a crunch button/switch. Channel select button, gain, bass mid, treble, contour, volume and od1/2 switch/button. Front located effects loop(very helpful, no need to fiddle around the back of the amp) with a -20 or 0 dB switch/button for the effects. Effects mix, reverb level, master volume. It's 1/2 and 1/2 because the "normal" channel is solid state, despite that you can still get extremely good clean sounds out of it, if you turn the gain down to about 1-4 and turn master volume up(then ofcourse you would have to turn the volume on the boost channel down). Seeing as the "boost" channel contains a valve (or so it sounds) you have to turn the amp slightly louder than practice volume to get it to roar. Excellent controls, I have the contour on 10 all the time seeing as I like my sound trebly. I have never dared to put this amp on full as half way as defenetly enough, even for a big pub. I wish it had a volume control on the clean channel as well as a gain one, that would make this amp pro. It doesn't have a headphone jack cos you'd go deaf if you were to plug one in. Does have a line-out (totally pointless never use it, always mic the amp up) and a footswitch jack. The footswitch I got is a 2 button one. One button for channel another for reverb. Shame there weren't reverb controls for each induvidual channel or a reverb boost or something (extra rev in solos). But I can't complain my best friends dad's friend gave this to me so yeh this amp kicks ass. // 10

Sound: I use a Gibson SG Special Faded with stock pickups, with the amp it sounds great, although I want to get higher gain pickups for it. And I also use an ESP/LTD V-250 (very rare or very old I don't know I can't find any on the internet) King V shaped thing with a DiMarzio super distortion in the bridge. The V-250 overdrives the clean channel if you turn the amp up a bit cos after all it is a super distortion! Sounds amazing in boost channel but I have to turn the bass off 'cause the pickup is very bassy, and even with the bass knob turned to 0 I still get an amazing sound. As I also run my pc from the same plug as my amp hums a bit, but in other situations such as band practice where I have my own plug no hum can be heard. I haven't even tried to make any other settings on the amp because I'm so pleased with the ones I have, but the person who owned this previously played blues n said the amp is very good but he got a new half stack so gave me this. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Super reliable never broken down or anything in those 15 years, how ever I want to get a new pre-amp tube for it seeing as tubes get older their sound fades or something and I want more distortion anyway. As this is my only big amp I use it without backup. I used to use the school's avt 50 which was valve but that was totally poor in terms of controlling the sound, you could not control the effects mix or anything. This amp wins by far. Seeing as it's almost as old as me and is super reliable I'll give it a ten. // 10

Overall Impression: I play metal, progressive, rock, anything basically. Very good match except for the fact that the clean channel isn't valve. I have been playing for 3 years and also own a DS-2, EQ-7 and a Morley Bad Horsie, these pedals work in harmony with the amp. If it were stolen I would probably buy a Marshall AVT150 half-stack because they do not sell or make these anymore. I have to say the only bad thing about the amp is it's heavyness, takes for ever to bring to a friend's house to jam. I love this amp, however I wouldn't mind a JCM combo instead, but only if I could afford it. // 9

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overall: 10
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: unregistered, on april 10, 2006
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 183

Purchased from: (It's second-hand)

Features: The legendary Valvestate series "swept the world" in 1991. This amp is a 80 watt amp. It could play paintings off the wall, if you'd like it to! It's 12" speaker gives the sound the correct depth and the preamp in it has an ECC83 valve in it and makes a nice sound! It's a great solid state amp with two channels (clean and boost). The clean channel has a 3-band equalizer and a gain, that can add a little crunch if you turn it over half power and it has a crunch button, that gives the signal a little extra drive. The boost channel also has a 3-band eq. It also has a gain, that decides how distorted the sound gets. There is a button for switching between "OD 1" and "OD 2." OD 1 is old, classic rock overdrive, while OD 2 is more brutal distortion. That channel also features a Contour pot, that can make the distortion sound anywhere between good ol' Marshall overdrive and a great nu-metal sound. And finally theres a volume pot to make the volume ballanced so it matches the volume on the clean channel. The master section features a master volume, power button, line out and footswitch out. Additionally it has an effect loop, where you can decide how much the effect shall mix with the sound. The effect loop also has a button to give the "Send" port more power, which is required for multi fx's. The footswitch can switch between the two channels and turn reverb (which by the way is made by real springs! ) on and off. I play rock. Mainly Nirvana, and it's versatile enough for ANY kind of rock! I can't see how anything should drag this rating down, so. // 10

Sound: I've got a Squier Strat guitar, which I've put a humbucker on in the brudge position. It runs through my Boss DS-2 Turbo Distortion (with turbo mode off) and further in through my Electro-Harmonix Small Clone Chorus and finally into this baby. The eq in the clean channel is enough to make the Nirvana sound I want, but I've toy'ed with the other channel aswell. If I want sound like Deep Purple, no problem! Like Stones, no problem! Like a nu-metal band, no problem! Just plain hardrock sound, no problem! You can get JUST the sound you want! The distortion in this thing is so versatile! It makes no noise at all! The only noise I've ever heard from it, somes from the guitar! // 10

Reliability & Durability: This is really an amp you can depend on! I'd anytime take it to a gig without a backup! It's never, ever failed or done anything un-expected! The only problem it has (and many people reports that aswell) is that the pots can get dirty and noisy after a while and it can be VERY annoying. But if you take some contact-spray, it's fixed in no time! But still. // 10

Overall Impression: Again, I'm into Nirvana and grunge. I'm also into other styles of rock. And this amp seems to be sharing my taste! I've been playing for a little over a year and play mostly power-chord songs and easy solo's (simple, but powerfull, as Kurt Cobain'd put it). My previous amp was a Behringer GMX122, or something like that. The only thing I can say about that is "stay away from it"! Eventhough it has 2x60 watt and 2x12 speakers, the sound just ain't right! If this one was stolen, I'd search the world around to find the thief, take him down myself and even swim it back to Denmark in a raft made of concrete, if it was necessary! This amp is a must! What I love about it is anything! What I hate about it is nothing! It may look like I just write that to save time, but it's simply as simple as that! My favorite feature might be the eq on the clean channel combined with the gain pot! When I was looking for a new amp, I came across Marhsall MG30DFX and a couple of sweet Randalls. But it ended up being this, because I saw the incredibly low price on the internet. The owner even had a bus with a 220 volt power generator in it, and he was incidentically on a trip to my area, so I tested it in the bus! And I fell in love with it right away! The only thing I've ever wished it has had, is a button to turn the internal speakers on and off, as it's nice to be able to test the sound coming out of the line out compared to, say, vocals and other instruments, so the mixing would be easier. But I can live without! Maybe I could even build my own, one day. // 10

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overall: 6.8
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: nick dixon, on august 25, 2008
0 of 2 people found this review helpful

Features: This amp was made around 92? Its pretty old. It shows on the PCB as it uses larger resistors and capacitors and found on older amps (more on that later). The ususal Marshall setup, 2 channels, 2 boots on each channel, reverb, eq. The novelty of this amp is that it uses a valve or tube as you americans call it, to provide power from the pre amp stage, stepping it down again with a small black transform (about the size of a jewelery ring box) to a managable volatge for the transistor powered amplifier section. As far as I can make out, there is 3 transistor power amps on the heat sink block. // 7

Sound: The sound. I will say this, it sounds great at mid to high volume, at lower volumes it sounds pretty pathetic to be honest. I play jazzy blues most of the time, a few extoic notes here and there, it plays well like most amps to this, the distortion (like most cheap marhalls) sounds pretty fake, and really cant be eumlatyed by any amp unless it has a tube power amp section, 2 6LV's or whatever they use, cant remember. I will comment that there is an utter lack of bass, and the EQ controls dont do much to the sound coming out of the amps 12" speaker. The amp shines best when you simply hit the strings harder and get that "spank" sound you get from hitting a guitar hard, its just boosting the voltage going into the 12ax7 pre amp valve, and distoring nicely. Id say this amp would be great for the rhythm player with a strat or similar single coil pickup, as the bass frequencies cant be heard, which are more suited to humbucking guitars. If this amp was more bassey, id give it an 7. Also, like many other marshalls, the 50Hz mains hum on this beast is rediculous!, you need to be about 5 feet away from it if you plan on recording, and make sure you have no fluresent lights running. // 6

Reliability & Durability: I bought it from a friend who was a music teacher at my school, he sold it to me on the basis it needed reapiring as the clean channel cut out randomly, and overall it was quite unreliable. I finished repairing it last night, after taking it apart with the help of my father, and my neighbour Who used to work for Marconi eletronics, we checked all the capacitors, and resoldered a few dry joints, and a pathetic repair someone had made to some of the resistors which had gotten hot. It looked like crow shit. Plugged it in and found all the channels are working great. Its been well abused in the past, as the PCS was covered in salt water residue, so its probably been to the sea side at one point. That was probably its cause of faliure last time due to short circuiting, and general neglect, and probably many spilt pints of beer. I'll say it will probably last well enough if you look after it. // 7

Overall Impression: For a Marshall amp, there is not comparison with the old jT45's, and even the JCM 900. Upon opening up, you realise theyre not built for the road inside, recording in your bedroom, and a few small gigs, yes. Nearly every Marshall I've come across has had a fault / needed work to get it going again. Unfortunately, like everything else, things are getting cheaper, and marshalls are made in india now (I think), the cheaper ones anyway, shipped back to england for the enclosure to be made. My general impression is this amp is one of the last to b made in the UK, and I think it's time we saw another Iconic amp like the AC30 or a JTM45 with the same craftmasnship and longevity to be made. You can still but AC30's off ebay!, theyre like classic cars and pretty user servicible! Will this amp be around for another 30 years?.. nah. // 7

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overall: 7.8
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: unregistered, on january 21, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 500

Purchased from: Billy Hyde

Features: Bought this amp new with my first paycheck after Uni back in 1993 and had it ever since. I like the amp because I can get the basic sounds I want out of it to play my music. I'm an old EVH fan, so love that type of hard rock and mid-eighties metal. Play surf, like SRV, into Jazz just slightly. Slayer. Into most things really. When I try to write it comes out like old cowboy songs. 2 switchable channels, Clean (with crunch option) and Dirty (with extra boost option). Effects loop for both pedal and rack line level. Pretty much got a good set of features to play around with, love the contour knob as you can dial up many sounds. Tube preamp only on the dirty channel, poweramp is Solidstate. Only the one Celestion speaker but can get freakin loud especially if you boost into the amp. I only play for fun with friends and don't gig. // 8

Sound: A couple of guitars, love my little Charvel with StewMac golden oldie pickup, to original PAF '59 specs (ala evh). Also have a MIM Fender with StewMac golden oldie single coils, Vintage 57 spec again. Have CIJ Fender Jaguar (with SD SJAG1 pickups) and Les Paul Studio stock. I like to boost in my amps, not my pickups, so if I want extra crunch I boost into the amp with a Tube Screamer, mainly volume slight gain. This pushes the preamp tubes beautifully and you can get some nice sounds. Reverb on it is ok, but if playing Surf I use a separate reverb on the fx loop. Not really noisy on it's own, but when pre-boosted it gets the usual hiss. The Clean channel is ok, but that's about it, it doesn't strike me as a good clean sound. I use it for putting my Metal Muff through when playing Slayer etc. With all my other toys I can get good sounds out of it for home use, and it can hold it's own against any drummer. Surf is the really only challenge. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I can depend on it to shuffle it into the boot when going to mates places, haven't gigged so can't say. Seems reliable, altho I had to get it serviced after leaving it 3 years in my old mans she'd when I was overseas, the pots got crackly and the volume kept going up and down (don't know what it was, they only charged me $70 tho). // 7

Overall Impression: This amp fits my style(s) nicely in that it has a Marshal tube pre-amp which has nice tones. Been playing since 1984 when I heard 'Hot for Teacher'. Own guitars mentioned above, and play a bit of bass but only with a practise amp. This amp has done most things I want to toy with. I would not replace this amp, as these days I can afford an all-tube amp, so would go down that track. But for the money, these things are cheap and give you nice Marshall tube pre-amp. Really good value, would recommend this as the next amp to buy after your practice amp to get some nice tube sounds. // 8

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overall: 9.3
Valvestate 8080 Reviewed by: crazytjeuh, on january 18, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 150

Purchased from: 2nd hand

Features: Well this amp has been there for a pretty long time, this ones probably 15+ years old! This amp is very versatile! From shimmering cleans all the way to death metal tones. I play blues, classic rock and heavy metal and I think it does these very well. It has got 2 channels: Normal channel with clean/crunch and boost channel with OD1/OD2. Also has an FX loop the reverb and channels are footswitchable (reverb is very nice spring reverb!). This is all I need from an amp really, more than enough power to compete with a drummer and my bassist. It has got a preamp tube in it, and imo it sounds very warm and shiny! The preamp tube is only for the boost channel, so the crunch you can get from the normal channel isn't as good as OD1 for example! // 9

Sound: I'm using a Cort G254 (HSS) and it sounds very well. I love how powerfull and warm this amp sounds, even though it's a hybrid amp! It isn't noisy at all, I've heard some complaints around the internet but mine isn't. The cleans are good and very useful! The distortion is full, but I would recommend rolling the treble all the way down and then using the contour knob to taste, it really changes the whole experience of the amp! // 9

Reliability & Durability: The guy I bought it from gigged alot of times with it, and his other guitarist still has the same amp and still gigs with it so I think it's very reliable! You can't really go wrong with marshall, they're well made and cheap to get 2nd hand! This amp is reliable enough to gig without a backup. // 10

Overall Impression: For my playing style it's one of the best choices I guess, it's only got 1 tube so you no swapping needed + tuhe preamp tube lasts VERY long! I've been playing for about 2, 5 years now and I'm going back to basics since having a full stack and multi FX pedals. Now my setup is just Guitar>Tuner>Overdrive>Amp. I love the fact that it sounds so warm even though not being full tube! I compared this to a Bugera V22 and V55, Jet City 20 combo and Line 6 DT25. I chose this one because it was alot lighter, cheaper and sounded pretty much the same! If you ever get the chance to play this amp you should do it, it's worth the try. // 9

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