#1
Well, it was time for a new amp and Bogner just released their brand new mass production amps called the Alchemist. It has everything a gigging guitarist would need: two channels, built-in reverb and delay, footswitch, etc., so I wanted it. Many are turned off by the fact that it's a Bogner that's made in China, but I don't care at all. You should let the sound speak for itself, not where it was assembled.

Here are the specs for the 2x12 combo:
# 40-watt class-AB power section with 20-watt variac mode
# Two 6L6 power tubes
# Five 12AX7 preamp tubes
# 12" Celestion® G12M Greenback speaker
# 12" Celestion® G12H Anniversary speaker
# Channel 1 (gold): Gain, Treble, Mid, Bass, Volume, Crunch mode, variable Bright, Deep switch
# Channel 2 (mercury): Gain, Treble, Mid, Bass, Volume, variable Bright, Mid Shift
# Effects, running in parallel: Reverb Type, Reverb Level, Delay Type, Delay Level, Delay Repeats (Feedback), Tap Tempo
# Four-button footswitch
# Retro-modern fit-and-finish
# Parallel effects send/return with level control
# 80 lbs. 25.75" W x 26" H x 10.25" D inches



To make it short: this amp =

Channel 1:
This channel has two modes, Crunch and Clean. On Clean, it doesn't break up much and retains a warm, glassy clean tone. To my ears, it's reminiscent of a Marshall/Vox clean, but it doesn't really have much character or life to it. It's just a plain old clean sound. Nothing special.
When you turn the Crunch mode, it changes the character of the sound quite a bit and adds a ton more gain to the sound. Having the gain set below 9 o clock gives you a nice clean tone with quite a bit of hair to it, which sounds great. Think of a Bassman. Turning the gain knob past halfway and you get a whole lot of fizz, but I have not turned this amp up at all yet, which I believe is hindering the true sound of the amp.



Channel 2:
This channel definitely has a specific coloring to it and it's very dark in tonal character. I would say that it's a hit or miss with most people, but I dig it. This is where EQing really makes a difference because the EQ on this channel is very sensitive. Putting it on the Punch setting, with Bright engaged (It's mandatory considering how dark this channel sounds), you get a GREAT hard rock sound, think GNR/Motley Crue type of sound. Turning the gain all the way up, you have more than enough gain to play 80's metal. Think of a hotrodded Marshall JCM800. Engaging the Boost function on the amp/footswitch really makes the sound cut through for soloing.



Effects:
I'm not a big effects person, and the only ones I need are reverb and delay, and this amp delivers exactly that. This amp employs Line 6 circuit for the effects but it's run in parallel, so it's out of the signal and doesn't color the tone of the amp. You get three kinds of delays and three kinds of reverb. Although you don't have millions of knobs to adjust the parameters, they get the job done. And let me tell you, they are good enough for me.

Footswitch:
The footswitch is so simple yet it is incredibly useful and convenient. You get to switch channels, enable/disable boost, and turn on/off delay and reverb. It's very heavy and durable.What more could a gigging guitarist want? One gripe though: it scratches very very easily. But who cares.



Build Quality, other things, rants:
I have the 2x12 version, and it's big and HEAVY. This monster weighs 80 pounds (thats like, 36kg). But what 2x12 isnt big and heavy. Also, the back panels seem very thin and can break easily, and they don't fit perfectly, leaving small gaps in between the amp chassis and the panel. it also has a 40 watt mode and 20 watt mode. I've mainly only played on the 20 watt mode and it is LOUD. I can barely get it past 8 o clock without breaking the windows. I cant imagine what 40 watts cranked would sound like.



All in all, this amp was a great buy, but I've only had it for a few days AND I haven't cranked it, so there is much more to find out about this amp. This amp is VERSATILE, it can do everything all the way until super duper brutal metal. So if you're thinking about buying a new amp, and you're in the $1000-$1500 range, defiintely check this amp out.
#2
Great review! How well does it maintain clarity with the gain cranked?
If you start a reply with: I have never played one but I have heard good things about it! Your opinion is invalid.
#3
the fizz you were talking about i only noticed with the 2x12. i liked the 1x12 better forthis amp. strange

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Yeh the SICK! bit sounds a bit stupid.

#4
Super duper brutal metal?

There's a sale going on in a nearby music shop, and this is going really cheap. I wish I had enough cash.
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#5
Quote by boxcarmonument
Great review! How well does it maintain clarity with the gain cranked?


Thanks! When the gain is dimed, it tends to get a tiny bit muddy, but it stays extremely quiet, which is great. If you use EMGs or active pickups, it would seriously scream METAL.

Quote by timzee117
the fizz you were talking about i only noticed with the 2x12. i liked the 1x12 better forthis amp. strange


Yeah, i noticed that too. I played the 1x12 in the shop and it was great on the Crunch setting, but then I got my 2x12 and the fizz started happening. Perhaps because of the different speakers.
#6
80lbs. As much as my buddies 1x15 solid-state bass combo. That's why I'll always vote head/2x12 or head/4x12. Combo 2x12's are just back-breaking.
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There are no genres in metal that end with "core."
#7
I just got it today too, my first tube amp...so awesome sounding ( a bit like a marshall IMO).
Just still haven't found a great metal/death core sound but I could throw a pedal in front of it and I don't really play those genres a lot anyway.
Ibanez RGA 8 (Dimarzio D Activator 8)->Rocktron Hush->Engl E530 preamp->Marshall 9200 poweramp->Marshall 4x12 closed back cab w/ G12t75's
#8
:droolsalloverhiskeyboardcausingthespacebartobreak:

The Alchemist is damn secksable.
I honeslty think without a phaser or chorus the clean channel is bland but it takes pedals very nicely.

80 pounds?
Mine as well drag around a 10 year old girl, plug my cable into her ear and listen to that baby scream.
#9
I tried one in Best Buy, and it did some nice thrash tones, but it just doesn't have a good voicing for super brutal metal, it just gets too bright and thin for Death Metal stuff.

It's definitely a great amp for anything else though!
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#10
Awesome review, sounds like a tasty amp. Will you be recording any clips for us?
#11
I didn't like it at all lol.
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#13
I loved the cleans when i tried it, not a huge fan of the dirt,
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#14
I got to try it out.

I dont really mind that its made in china.

China dosent equal bad quality, sometimes it just mean better quality for the same price of mediocre things made here.

Vox makes exceptional amps and i bealive there made in China.

Just hope its not a flop like the Egnater.
#15
I wouldn't say the Egnater was a flop, Egnater screwed up bigtime by not really marketing the amp towards a general audience, they were like "here it is, check out these cool features". But for what their amps are, they're pretty good.

I thought the clean channel was above average, say Mesa Boogie, but no where near Vox or Framus.

When I try an amp's gain channel out I always have the EQ flat, then scoop it, then do the exact opposite. Then go for a Tool tone. The Alchemist surpassed my expectations on the gain channels. Thoroughly impressed by it.
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#16
something about me just wont allow me to consider the alchemist series real bogners...
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#17
cool, nice amp man.

i just hope it doesn't crap out on you. made in china doesn't generally mean the sound is going to suck, but i personally would be wary of its build quality. i do hope though that's not the case.
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#18
Sweet amp, I was looking at one of the 1x12, but a few days ago I came across a Bogner Shiva 1x12 combo with reverb in a custom color for $1599. Im going in a few days to try it out, I figure the hand made is gunna be better and with an MSRP of $2870 at my local shop with the custom features, I just can't pass it up. If I don't like it I might pick one of these up and see how it plays.