I've narrowed my choices down to two amps - the mesa boogie express 5:25 and the rivera clubster 25. I currently play a 2001 american fender tele and play blues to hard rock and some 80s metal every now and again. I've played the mesa, but there are no riveras anywhere in or around the city where i live. i really dug the mesa, but there was a certain darkness to it that left me wanting a bit more. maybe i just didn't take the time to tweak it?

Does anyone have any expereince with these amps?
I have the Mesa, and I love it. If you take the time you can achieve any sound for any style. Maybe not the über brootal death metal distortion, but can get some really good distortion. All in all, I've had no regrets with the purchase of this amp
PRS SE Custom 24
Jackson DKA7
Gibson Explorer
MESA/Boogie Express 5:25

Dunlop Cry Baby Classic
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Quote by kyle62
I'd go for a Mesa F-50 or the Clubster, personally.

+1, or a DC/.50 Cal - the Express was only good for cleans IMO. Way overpriced, much better amps in that price range
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.

The express is definitely overpriced. Saying that, I've never got on with any Rivera amps either.
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I'm not sure about the 5:25 which uses EL84s but the 5:50 (6L6's) seems to kick ass and is only 300 more for double the power and 2x12 speakers vs a single 12 or 10 in the 5:25. Looking at prices I'm not sure what you'll get that's better' or more versatile for the money (1399 for 5:50 w/2x12). The only good quality all-tube amps I've seen for under that are some Peavey's, Traynors and Fenders. I've owned several of each over the years while they're good amps they excel at only one sound more less.
Moving on.....
I've played both and if it was down to those two, I'd rather have the Clubster.

That said, I'd rather an F Series, .50 Cal, Mark or Lonestar over the Clubster.

+1 to the Traynor. Great amps imo.

What is your total budget and closest city? *coughUsedcough*
Take a look at the electrodyne. Its imo the true successor to the F series, and one of the best amps mesa has put out in a while. great clean, great crunch, great lead
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I used to own a Rivera R100. The Knucklehead and Clubster were distantly based on both of the R100's channel. I'd recommend the Clubster in this ocassion or follow MC's advice.
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