Price paid: £ 59
Purchased from: Amazon.co.uk
Features — 8
This is my first and only amplifier designed for acoustic guitars. I got it because it was cheap, but I was truly surprised with its capabilities. It is what I would call a medium sized amp (roughly 47x38x26cm) and as the name suggests, has a power output of 25 Watts. It is made from wood with a fake, brown leather wrap. It has a brown mesh fabric for the front with an interesting shaped body (trust me, it looks really cool). The features on the control pane (mounted on the top) are: Channel 1 input with volume control (XLR plug) - Channel 2 input with volume control (1/4 inch jack plug) - Bass, Middle and Treble controls - Chorus with speed control - CD/Audio input with volume control (left and right RCA audio inputs) - Output (1/4 inch jack plug. The amp has both a 2.5 inch and an 8 inch speaker to produce a wider range of frequencies.
Sound — 7
I play many instruments and almost all of them are electro acoustic. The first thing to note, when I turned this amp on for the first time there was an awful background fuzz even at low volume. I was about to send it back but I discovered that the noise disappears if the guitar is directly facing the amp or facing away. Anywhere in between and the noise comes back. I decided just to deal with it. The speakers can produce a very large range of frequencies making it useful for almost all instruments from the bass to the mandolin while the guitar fits nicely in the middle. My favourite feature, the Chorus function, gives the guitar a mellow and harmonious tone as well as modulating the volume of certain frequencies at a chosen speed. This can sound fantastic but you need to match the speed of this function to the speed of the music you are playing perfectly or it will sound quite strange. The Chorus works by using the the two speakers together, so when you have two inputs at once, you cannot use the Chorus. It suits many genres but the most notable are country, folk, and blues (with the chorus). almost any other acoustic genre is possible through this amp.
Reliability & Durability — 6
The walls of the amp are made of very thick wood making it very heavy (11kg). From this I can conclude that the handle does a very good job indeed, with no signs of strain on the plastic or metal fixings. As for the speakers, they struggle at high volume. I tried this amp at close to full volume (9/10) while my parents were away for the day. the bass and middle frequencies buzz very badly when played at this volume but it is extremely loud so they do quite well for their size. After turning down the volume, the speakers still worked fine with no signs of damage. This amp is perfect for solo performances at small venues as it is portable and you can have both the mic and guitar through the same amp.
Overall Impression — 9
I would recommend this amp to any beginner/amateur musician on a budget as there are many useful features with very few faults. I use it to record videos for YouTube but my camera is rubbish and doesn't do the amp justice. I am still yet to try my voice through it but for that I'll need to save my pennies for a microphone. If you don't plan on taking your music into a career then this is an amp for life. The sort of thing your future grandchildren will find sitting and gathering dust in a shed for 40 years that somehow still works. Also, the metal is painted gold. Which is so cool.