Maxwatt B20 review by Hiwatt

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  • Sound: 6
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.8 Good
  • Users' score: 10 (1 vote)
Hiwatt: Maxwatt B20

Price paid: $ 366

Purchased from: Cue Music Darwen (UK)

Sound — 6
Well it is mainly played through with a F.S Passive Bass which isn't the best axe in the world but with a bit of modification, doesn't sound too bad. One thing I will "pick up" on is the fact that the bass I am using does not allow me to change from tone to tone very quickly. It only takes three seconds to do it via the Hiwatt but this can be distressing on a dark stage. I am not a user of bass distortion but just for this review I have tried it out and no. It's crap. I just got a load of feedback and when I did calm it down, I got a terrible fuzzy sound which did disappear when I played but is not ideal at all.

Overall Impression — 8
I play all kinds of music and this amp suits all of them. However, I have not played it with a pedal or with any super effect so be wary of this if you are thinking of buying. I think that Hiwatt could have put some lights and things on it to make it look even prettier and a channel switch, but apart from that I have no problems with this product at all. Please feel free to e-mail me for any information or questions as this amplifier is hard to find (even on Google) and will come in many different styles. Happy playing!

Reliability & Durability — 9
I will always rely upon this amp because it is soo durable. It's been kicked and shoved about and has tumbled around in Mum's Nissan Micra but it still looks Brand New. I have never had a problem with it and am sure I never will. Trace Elliot hold the title for durability but this (for the money) is ace. I can honestly say that if you did buy this, you would be very careful not to let your baby get damaged anyway.

Features — 8
The Hiwatt Maxwatt comes in many shapes and sizes. I happen to have the English 25 watt combo. I've had it for 3 years and it never fails to impress. It's good looks and beautiful tones are a credit to Hiwatt and I will never get rid of it. It's the best 'bedroom' amp I have ever played for bass as I manage to get solid rock sounds to mellow jazz and blues and have even had a cheap 'Mark King' slap and pop tone. I would not use this at a gig if I could help it. Saying that, I certainly have in the past done smaller venues with it and volume output aside you can adapt it to the vicinity very easily. The amplifier also boasts a headphone jack which has come in very handy indeed.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    This is an unremarkable amplifier. Its one redeeming feature ( for myself) is that I picked it up for £50 new while the rrp is still hovering around £150. It serves its purpose very well as "peace of mind" against nuking any of my regular guitar amps (certainly for the sedentary lifestyle that it will encounter in my "studio"!). It's heavy for what it is, this gives the impression that it's solidly built and so it is, but I can't be bothered to look inside at the inevitable phenolic board with pcb mounted potentiometers. The bottom line is that you get what you pay for and at £50 that's just what I've done, but that would not be the case at the rrp. It would just be another plain vanilla box with a historically significant badge attached by a Chinese worker. Recommended then, but only with caveats- and don't expect to be able to take on Animal from the Muppets.