550x Review

manufacturer: SWR date: 11/03/2008 category: Bass Amplifiers
SWR: 550x
The 550x carries on the fine tradition of quality craftsmanship, and deep, rich, biting tones that SWR has been producing since the beginning.
 Sound: 8
 Overall Impression: 7
 Reliability & Durability: 6
 Features: 8
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review (1) pictures (1) 1 comment vote for this gear:
overall: 7.3
550x Reviewed by: UG Team, on november 03, 2008
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Sound: While the 550x sports the traditional SWR sound, it also brings a whole range of new sounds to the table. As I mentioned before, the aural enhancer plays a crucial part in the sound of all SWR amps. It brings the modern sounds of crisp highs and punchy bass, while on the other end of the spectrum giving off the classic sounds that so many of my colleagues still value. However even with the aural enhancer defeated, the EQ alone offers a huge range of tonal possibilities. From the deep, rich, boomy bass offered by low frequency adjustment, to the bright clear ringing treble, this amp is equally suited for every genre, from metal to jazz. // 8

Reliability & Durability: While this amp holds it's own in many situations, be they studio or Live, metal or jazz, one thing that it lacks is durability. Within one week of owning the amp, the power Switch developed some sort of short, which caused the amp to play at only a fraction of the power that it was capable of outputting. In addition, during the same short span of time, both the gain and master volume knob had considerable crackling occurring while moving. This should not be happening. This amp was treated with the utmost care and respect. Especially considering the short amount of time that it had been in my possession at the time that the problems occurred. // 6

Overall Impression: While there seemed to be some rather serious problems in the control parts of the amp, these were compensated for by the overall presentation of the unit. Once again SWR aims to please with their advance tone shaping technology and the all tube preamplifier. Elements of the modern, the classic, and the funky come together to really make this amp bark, at any volume, in any situation. // 7

- Nicholas Cole-Klaes (c) 2008

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