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#1
I never thought I would write this. I have backed Bugera for a year now since they have came out. I have played them night in and night out, but now is where I take the other side. I don't hate them per se, but I will never buy another of their current series that they produce.

Here's a Bugera horror story. Luckily, my dealer is awesome and all chaos was avoided.

I have now owned 2 Bugera 6262 heads. I had the first one about 4 months, and then one day before a show, it wouldn't turn on during practice. Luckily, the show wasn't until that night, and my dealer replaced it for a new one. I figured my first was just a lemon. It was one of the first shipments of 6262's out on the market. I was fine with it having a problem, and with anything, I just assume that something brand new is bound to have a few lemons. I've read other stories about peoples Bugeras, but I never had a problem with my second one until last Saturday.

Let me give you the backstory on this particular amp. I have had it since around May. However, because of a band breaking up, it was used very sparingly since then. I have had it less than a year, and it has only been used for regular practices and gigs for about 5 1/2 months out of about 8-9 months. There were a few scratches on the tolex, but other than that, in perfect shape. Never ran too hard, probably never ran above 5 on the volume. I love the tone of these amps. And I can't say anything bad about that, only positives. The problems I have encountered are based solely on the amps reliability.

Back to last Saturday. My band was setting up for our first full three 1-hour-set bar gig. I haul in all my equipment. I turn on my amp and leave it on standby as I normally do until my guitars are tuned and ready to do soundcheck. I flip off my noise gate and tuner and start strumming, and I notice there is no sound! Not thinking it could be the amp, I start with the obvious: the volume pot on the guitar. It was all the way up. I know my cables are good, but I checked to make sure all connections were made properly and that all of my pedal board was working correctly as well. I then turned to the Bugera. I look at it and notice one thing a guitarist never wants to see: THE TUBES AREN"T LIGHTING UP. Not one. I try turning it on and turning it off and all different sorts of resuscitation on it, but to no avail. It had **** out on me. Luckily, I had received an old Digitech GSP preamp from my dad as an early Christmas gift and managed to hook it up to a spare combo amp we had brought, and then ran the signal from it to my 4x12 cab (in other words, using the combo as a poweramp). It sounded great. I fortunately had the time to program in my basic patches for it, and sonically it sounded great. Blew me away for what a digital preamp (with the help of a carefully placed and tuned in EQ pedal) can do. I make it through the show with it, and now it is my main amp.

I took my 6262 back today. Got a power amp and a rack out of it and my dealer is thinking about sending all of his remaining Bugeras back. Out of 6 has has sold, 2 of them (both mine) have both been sent back.

I guess I've decided, and in my opinion, the bottom line on these amps.:

They sound great. Reliability sucks. If this were 3 years later and it broke down, then it would be a different story, and I would not have minded getting it fixed.


I am looking forward to see what the company comes out with next. I hear they have more amps in coming out in the future. I am interested in hearing them, sonically, they are making great amps, but I would rather them make the necessary improvements to their amps and quality control and pay an additional hundred bucks or so, and have a product that lasts.

After all the time I spent defending these amps, I just feel pretty crappy. It seems like they are too high risk/high reward for this guitarist.
Quote by Zeppelin71
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#2
*high fives*

lol

Flame fest starts that way \/
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#3
I had the same amp and the same problem as you did on your second one so I took mine back for a spider valve.

I won't buy from them again.
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#4
Im a former Bugera victim. Went Mesa and will never look back.
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Quote by rhcp_freak
If you're EQ'd loose, you'll sound loose anyway.
#5
Quote by H_ngm_n
I had the same amp and the same problem as you did on your second one so I took mine back for a spider valve.

I won't buy from them again.

If the reliability issues were solved, then I would highly consider it, especially if the rumor about some sort of Bogner copy is true. If the reliability isn't there, then count me out.
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
#6
I won't buy either. Maybe if they fix their tube quality. maybe
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#7
After two sets of tubes in a month I sent my 333xl back and bought a B-52. I liked the Bugera's sound but I wasn't going to keep feeding it tubes. Hopefully the B-52 holds up better.
#8
That's 5 people with failed bugera's equaling 7 faulty amps.

If I see a few more I will no longer attempt to reason with people that say the quality control "is not that bad"
Pain is an illusion.
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#9
Quote by sjones
I never thought I would write this. I have backed Bugera for a year now since they have came out. I have played them night in and night out, but now is where I take the other side. I don't hate them per se, but I will never buy another of their current series that they produce.
.....


For something that could have been VERY easily avoided, this is one heck of a rant. No where did you mention doing routine maintenance of your amp or replacing the known defective Bugera tubes. Especially using it for gigs.

I just posted this in the Bugera thread:

These amp fail for three reasons:

1. Faulty tubes from the start
2. Bias set incorrectly at the factory
3. Loose ground connection and clips
4. ALL OF THE ABOVE

ALL VERY EASY LONG TERM FIXES

I will TOTALLY agree that right of the box, Bugera amps are highly unreliable. 7 year old chinese kids often miss things during assembly...BUT...If you didn't inspect your amps BEFORE gigging with them, I can hardly blame Bugera.
#10
Quote by BeerChurch
For something that could have been VERY easily avoided, this is one heck of a rant. No where did you mention doing routine maintenance of your amp or replacing the known defective Bugera tubes. Especially using it for gigs.

I just posted this in the Bugera thread:

These amp fail for three reasons:

1. Faulty tubes from the start
2. Bias set incorrectly at the factory
3. Loose ground connection and clips
4. ALL OF THE ABOVE

ALL VERY EASY LONG TERM FIXES

I will TOTALLY agree that right of the box, Bugera amps are highly unreliable. 7 year old chinese kids often miss things during assembly...BUT...If you didn't inspect your amps BEFORE gigging with them, I can hardly blame Bugera.


I see what you're saying. All of the reasons the amps fail are something the user could have done; however, Bugera is losing their ass BIGTIME because they're not taking the time to prevent these issues. Checking an amp's bias is always a great idea, but replacing new tubes with more new tubes will basically add another $100 to the price of the amp. Some guys also want to plug in and play, not check for loose ground connections.

Just because the user can prevent it doesn't mean it shouldn't be prevented in the first place.
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#11
Quote by MESAexplorer
I see what you're saying. All of the reasons the amps fail are something the user could have done; however, Bugera is losing their ass BIGTIME because they're not taking the time to prevent these issues. Checking an amp's bias is always a great idea, but replacing new tubes with more new tubes will basically add another $100 to the price of the amp. Some guys also want to plug in and play, not check for loose ground connections.

Just because the user can prevent it doesn't mean it shouldn't be prevented in the first place.


No arguments here at all. People REALLY do need to know what they are getting themselves into when they purchase one of these.

Insepct your Bugera BEFORE you even turn it on!!
#12
Had I known about the problem with the loose grounds or the clip on the transformer I probably would have tried that before I sent it back. It did sound nice when it worked, but I was starting to get close to the end of the return period so I opted to just try something else. So far I am happy with the choice.
#13
That's what I was about to say, if you're buying a Bugera you should know what you're getting into.

I'm just saying with an amp, you shouldn't be expected to work on before using it. Dealers should also step it up and take some initiative to prevent amp returns.

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#14
"Had I known about the problem with the loose grounds or the clip on the transformer I probably would have tried that before I sent it back. It did sound nice when it worked, but I was starting to get close to the end of the return period so I opted to just try something else. So far I am happy with the choice."

It took us awhile to figure out what heck was going on. Even if they come out with a new line, we'll still have the same issues if they are "assembled in China.


"I'm just saying with an amp, you shouldn't be expected to work on before using it. Dealers should also step it up and take some initiative to prevent amp returns."

You would think the dealers would have caught on to this by now...If not, send to my blog.
#15
Quote by MESAexplorer
That's what I was about to say, if you're buying a Bugera you should know what you're getting into.

I'm just saying with an amp, you shouldn't be expected to work on before using it. Dealers should also step it up and take some initiative to prevent amp returns.


I agree with this pretty much. BeerChurch has been very strait-forward about this amp as well. I've remained pretty neutral on the subject and I have NOT played one.

Younger people that want to play metal on a budget and know jack squat about biasing and soldering are the ones that need to be warned or clued in. I will refer people to BeerChurch's blog if I recommend it in the future.

There are other amps that are made in China too as you guys know.

I think Bugera at a minimum should make a training video and send that along with extra tubes to all their dealers. They should be 'set-up'. It would save the dealers and consumers a ton of headaches and shipping costs.

peace
#16
Well I haven't really said it (I don't know why), but might as well mention it now.

When I was getting the 333XL demo'd to me, it died. Just like I've heard everyone else describe it. Just powers off, no signal of life whatsoever. The tone was nothing like some of the youtube videos etc. I had heard - but this could have been due to a very cold bias (it did die), or the speakers/tubes needing to move a bit more, as they were both taken out of the box new right in front of me.

While it was working, the Lead channel also picked up a radio channel...

You would think if Behringer wanted to finally start a serious venture into the gear market they'd try to scrap that unreliable, poorly made reputation, but hell - it really seems like they don't care..
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Last edited by mike.h at Dec 9, 2008,
#17
^to my point mike, those were taken strait out of the box and plugged in an played. The dealer, you and ultimately Behringer would have been better off spending 20 minutes fixing the 3 things BeerChurch has pointed out. Behringer is throwing more money out the door in unneccessary shipping costs. You might have walked out with one or at least a better impression if these things could have been avoided.
#18
Well Bugera said that removing the amp from the chassis will void the warranty, so you cant really do much of the things BeerChurch recommended without losing the warranty.

I actually asked the guy selling it if he had a multimeter or probe when I was talking to him over email but he didn't.

I wouldn't be surprised AT ALL if the only cause of all of these issues is them using the amps tests points to bias, which are known for being VERY inaccurate in both the Bugera's and their Peavey counterparts. If you set an amp to a bias too cold it usually craps out and takes everything with it.
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#19
When considering Bugera you've got two options:

1. Learn how to become a tube amp tech. Something you should really learn anyways, especially with high-gain amps. Most of what you need to know is very simple and straight forward. Common sense type of stuff.

(Besides, even if you blow up your 5150 in Billings, Montana, there are NO techs with a 500 mile radius and you might just save your butt and your band by knowing how to swap out tubes, resolder transformer leads and bias your own amplifier. True Story!)

2. Save up some more cash and buy better made amp. In the $1000USD range, there are TONS of great amps to choose from. Too many to list. But again, these things need maintenance as well.

If anyone cares -
I stumbled onto Bugera just by chance. I needed an amp for a gig down in Louisianna, so had one shipped there. The tone was astonishing as I wasn't expecting much for the price.
With a little time and effort, you can make these amps really solid and defintely worth the money and hassle for the tone.
#20
Quote by BeerChurch
It took us awhile to figure out what heck was going on. Even if they come out with a new line, we'll still have the same issues if they are "assembled in China.


I didn't mean to come off sounding like I was pointing fingers or complaining that I hadn't been told about these fixes. I just didn't realize that those things could have been to blame. Nice thing is most online stores have great return policies. So if for some reason I have any trouble with my B-52 and it needs to be returned I may give the Bugera another try now that I know a few things to check first.

Quote by mike.h
Well Bugera said that removing the amp from the chassis will void the warranty, so you cant really do much of the things BeerChurch recommended without losing the warranty.


As long as you don't go getting stupid and just make sure everything is connected and tightened down properly they shouldn't even be able to tell you had your hands inside of the chassis. I mean yeah the best choice probably would be to eliminate the clips in there all together and hardwire everything but just making sure they are securely fastened would probably go along way.
Last edited by Demigawd at Dec 9, 2008,
#21
^mike...good point - and I am suggesting the dealers do this. Maybe they each need to keep at least one qualified tech on staff to keep their Bugera dealer status, and when a shipment comes in the guy/gal sits down and 'fixes' all of them.

idk, i'm trying to think of a fix but i'm sure no one at Behringer is listening
#22
I have a question I have been trying to figure out. Are we sure that Behringer actually makes these things or are they just the distributor. I had used the contact us link on the Bugera website and when they responded to me they said they could not help me because they were in Germany and I would need to contact their USA distributor Behringer.
#23
Quote by mike.h
Well Bugera said that removing the amp from the chassis will void the warranty, so you cant really do much of the things BeerChurch recommended without losing the warranty.

I actually asked the guy selling it if he had a multimeter or probe when I was talking to him over email but he didn't.

I wouldn't be surprised AT ALL if the only cause of all of these issues is them using the amps tests points to bias, which are known for being VERY inaccurate in both the Bugera's and their Peavey counterparts. If you set an amp to a bias too cold it usually craps out and takes everything with it.


You won't void the warranty by removing the chasis...Only if you mod it. Tightening the loose transformers and ground wire is hardly a mod.

AND YES!!!
At the factory they are biasing these things with the test points WHICH IS HIGHLY INACCURATE. Mine was set to 26mA.......WAY TO LOW!!! Unbelievably LOW!! It should be around 40mA. At this low of a plate percentage, your getting down into CROSS-OVER distortion...Not good at all.
#24
Quote by Demigawd

As long as you don't go getting stupid and just make sure everything is connected and tightened down properly they shouldn't even be able to tell you had your hands inside of the chassis. I mean yeah the best choice probably would be to eliminate the clips in there all together and hardwire everything but just making sure they are securely fastened would probably go along way.


Exactly!!

...once that warranty is up...get in there and cut off those clips and solder everything.

"I have a question I have been trying to figure out. Are we sure that Behringer actually makes these things or are they just the distributor. I had used the contact us link on the Bugera website and when they responded to me they said they could not help me because they were in Germany and I would need to contact their USA distributor Behringer."



I believe Bugera is a sister company. The owner of Behringer (what's his name) has always wanted to get into the tube amplifier market. He actually studied and ripped apart a lot of end amplifiers to make his models. He also talked to thundreds of professional musicians asking questions about what they like the best about their amps and why.
Last edited by BeerChurch at Dec 9, 2008,
#25
Quote by BeerChurch
You won't void the warranty by removing the chasis...Only if you mod it. Tightening the loose transformers and ground wire is hardly a mod.

"As long as you do not remove the amplifier chassis from the housing, and put in the correct tubes, and there is no mistake made, it won`t be a problem, I guess.

If any mistake occurs, by using the wrong tube type or anything else…it is in the hand of the technicians of our service centre.

If they find out a fault occurred by unauthorised or unprofessional workmanship, it will void the warranty.



Your BUGERA Team

Rolf Buschmann

European Business Center
BEHRINGER International GmbH"
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#26
Quote by BeerChurch
When considering Bugera you've got two options:

1. Learn how to become a tube amp tech. Something you should really learn anyways, especially with high-gain amps. Most of what you need to know is very simple and straight forward. Common sense type of stuff.

2. Save up some more cash and buy better made amp. In the $1000USD range, there are TONS of great amps to choose from. Too many to list. But again, these things need maintenance as well.

You obviously know what you are talking about but I disagree to a point.

1.) I don't think someone should have to be an amp tech to be a musician and play a guitar.

2.) I'm struggling to think of all the amps in the $1,000 range that will do metal. Assuming you meant new of course. B52 - check. Randall RGs - check. Valveking - ok, whatever

Seriously, help me.


Generally, I agree with you though, so maybe I'll stop there.
Last edited by 311ZOSOVHJH at Dec 9, 2008,
#27
From the Bugera warranty claus:
"Only qualified personell may remove chasis from the housing."

Qualified is a very vauge term.
Can you turn a ground screw with a screw driver?
Yes?
Then you my are "qualified".
#28
Yeah, but I wouldn't doubt that if they saw any signs of chassis removal, and no tech verification, they would void the warranty.
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#29
But like I said before if you don't get stupid and mess something up while you are in there they shouldn't even know you did it. If you aren't confident enough to tighten a screw or make sure everything is plugged in tight with out breaking anything you are definitely not qualified, find some one who is.

Also with all the trouble they are having with these amps I doubt they are doing any real scrutinizing of the chassis to make sure they haven't been tampered with. From what I gathered when I dealt with them they seem like they are just TRYING, seems like a futile attempt but it seemed like they were trying, to make their customers happy.
Last edited by Demigawd at Dec 9, 2008,
#30
Quote by 311ZOSOVHJH
You obviously know what you are talking but I disagree to a point.

1.) I don't think someone should have to be an amp tech to be a musician and play a guitar.

2.) I'm struggling to think of all the amps in the $1,000 range that will do metal. Assuming you meant new of course. B52 - check. Randall RGs - check. Valveking - ok, whatever

Seriously, help me.


Generally, I agree with you though, so maybe I'll stop there.


1. No no...in theory, you are absolutely right. I have several amps that usually just need a yearly cleaning/retube depending hours played. You could do this yourself or take it down to your local tech and your good to go.

2. There are several new amps for $1000-1500USD that will do metal
Last edited by BeerChurch at Dec 9, 2008,
#31
Quote by BeerChurch


These amp fail for three reasons:

1. Faulty tubes from the start
2. Bias set incorrectly at the factory
3. Loose ground connection and clips
4. ALL OF THE ABOVE

ALL VERY EASY LONG TERM FIXES

I will TOTALLY agree that right of the box, Bugera amps are highly unreliable. 7 year old chinese kids often miss things during assembly...BUT...If you didn't inspect your amps BEFORE gigging with them, I can hardly blame Bugera.



If bugera isn't properly grounding their amps and they are not properly biasing their amps that is their fault! It's also their fault that they are using tubes that are constantly defective. Putting defective tubes on an amp is like stringing up a brand new guitar with rusty strings. Forgetting to connect the grounds would be like not installing all of the tuners and not correctly biasing the tubes is like not bothering to to adjust a truss rod.

If you went to a guitar shop and picked up a guitar that was missing a tuning peg or two, had rusty string, and backbow in the neck causing frets 3 to 7 to be dead would you say "well I just have to do routine maintenance" or would you say "if it's doing this when it's new I'd hate to see what it's like in 2 years".

Instruments are supposed to work when they are new. If it's routine to need to take it to a shop just to make it work then something is wrong!
Not taking any online orders.
#32
I think the majority agreement here is basically correct. I don't think anyone would care to pay a little extra to have the reliability issues fixed. The amps do sound great. I loved the tones of my two pieces o' crap, but the fact is, if I can't count on an amp to work WITHOUT me taking time to make repairs that shouldn't have to be made to it in the first place, then why buy it.
I know these are all basically minor problems with them. But the recurrence of them makes me sick. I don't BUY amps to have to work on them BEFORE I play them. I BUY an amp to PLAY. Now, I know the other side of the argument is "check it out inside before", but in theory, you shouldn't have to do that. You should be able to buy the amp, and play, not buy the amp, repair it (which costs more money, and more than it would raise the price of the amp itself if Bugera had done it in the first place), and then play it. That's not good business.

However, I do have to thank Bugera for being able to return my broken heap and for starting my rack, which I had been wanting to do, just no cash for it. Bastards.
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
#33
Quote by mike.h
Well I haven't really said it (I don't know why), but might as well mention it now.

When I was getting the 333XL demo'd to me, it died.


ho-lee-****..... so after all that time you spent fiercely defending these things without any real first hand knowledge you actually played one and it died? LOL.... priceless.
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Quote by rhcp_freak
If you're EQ'd loose, you'll sound loose anyway.
#34
Yes, it makes sense to check the amp when you first get it, but to be fair, i dont expect to have to after spending money on a new product...
#35
I see quite a few threads on here about "my new bugera doesnt work". And they are made by behringer which has a horrible reputation when it comes to quality so doing things in china wasnt going to make things better. Companies like this think a 20% failure rate is acceptable the high profit margin gained from corner cutting makes up for the shipping on the lemons. To those who say well they arent bad amps if you fix a few things when you get em new. Thats a bit flawed thinking. Im not going to buy an amp and first thing put new tubes in it and fix a few internal flaws. If I buy a new amp Im gonna plug it in and it better work. And it better work for more than a week before it needs a visit back to the factory or set of tubes. If im gonna shell out extra for good tubes Ill just shell out extra cash for a higher quality amp to begin with. A bugera may sound good but is pointless if it only works half the time or needs to be fixed constantly.
#36
Quote by Tackleberry
I see quite a few threads on here about "my new bugera doesnt work". And they are made by behringer which has a horrible reputation when it comes to quality so doing things in china wasnt going to make things better. Companies like this think a 20% failure rate is acceptable the high profit margin gained from corner cutting makes up for the shipping on the lemons. To those who say well they arent bad amps if you fix a few things when you get em new. Thats a bit flawed thinking. Im not going to buy an amp and first thing put new tubes in it and fix a few internal flaws. If I buy a new amp Im gonna plug it in and it better work. And it better work for more than a week before it needs a visit back to the factory or set of tubes. If im gonna shell out extra for good tubes Ill just shell out extra cash for a higher quality amp to begin with. A bugera may sound good but is pointless if it only works half the time or needs to be fixed constantly.


OMG Hit the head on the nail so many times in this post.

I'm happily sitting with my b-52 next to me right now. =)

I wonder if we were to actually figure out how many people on UG got messed up bugera's... would we be a little startled at the number?
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#37
Quote by Tackleberry
I see quite a few threads on here about "my new bugera doesnt work". And they are made by behringer which has a horrible reputation when it comes to quality so doing things in china wasnt going to make things better. Companies like this think a 20% failure rate is acceptable the high profit margin gained from corner cutting makes up for the shipping on the lemons.

This is where I disagree. Even though I have had Bugera problems, I have used and own some other Behringer products that are great, and never had to think twice about.
I will say they make some great PA equipment, and especially for the price. I have never had a problem with their PA gear, and I may be investing in some soon.
Also, I use 2 of their pedals. First, their 7-Band Graphic EQ is excellent. I used to use it to boost the Bugera, now it has another and better use. It sets between my Digitech GSP and my power amp in my rack to allow me to fine tune my tone. Works very excellent. Also, I have a Behringer Hellbabe Wah. I was wary at first, and only bought it because my Crybaby Classic crapped out on me and I needed a wah cheap and fast. I love the tone I get from it, and it's never failed me.

So I can't say Behringer is a bad company, and saying a 20% failure rate on all of their products is kind of out there. The problem that I see lies directly in the reliability issues of the Bugera line of amps.
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
#38
Quote by CorduroyEW
If bugera isn't properly grounding their amps and they are not properly biasing their amps that is their fault!


You shouldn't take ANY valve amp out on the road without a good inspection and tune up. Especially one that hasn't been proven yet.

Having said that...I mostly agree with all of you. These amps definitely need a little work right out of the box. Not something you would expect after paying your hard earned money on a new amplifier. Totally agreed!

BUT...here's the catch...IF you ARE willing to put some time and effort into these amps, for the price, they can't be beat. My 333XL has been going strong 4 hours a night, 5 nights a week, for several months now. Everything is still stock. I've since retired a Roland JC100, a JCM 900, a 5150 and a Mesa MarkIV, because the 333XL will cover all these bases live.

I'll shut up now. Ya'll know where to find me.
Last edited by BeerChurch at Dec 9, 2008,
#39
A budget amp is a budget amp... Its that simple...

B-52's, Valvekings, Valve Jr's and Bugera's all have there issues some are on there 3rd series of amp now.. It happens and will continue to happen. If you dont like it get something a bit more stable...

God knows I dont like Bugera but theres a ton of people that love them. So let them love them and there still worth the risk for the most part if you have to have a new product. So I will still recommend them..
Last edited by IbanezPsycho at Dec 9, 2008,
#40
^^ I recommend them based on tone. But for reliability without having a tune up on it first, then no.
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
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