Price paid: $ 1850
Purchased from: Second hand
Sound — 9
The clean channel is quite silent compared to the lead channel on the same settings, but you can match volumes quite easily. You have a lot of clean headroom, and only when you turn the gain & channel volume way up you get a smooth overdriven sound. The lead channel is what this baby is all about. The low end of this thing is massive, unlike any other amp I've heard or played. It might be considered a high gain amp, but unlike most other brands the gain is 100% usable. Turn the gain all the way up on an Engl or 5150 and it sounds like crap. Not on the Bogner, as it stays tight and defined as ever with the gain maxed. You will also not need a tube screamer or any other pedal in front of it to tighten it up. In fact, any pedals in front of the amp will take kill the particular sound of this amp. It works best with (rack-)effects in the loop. As mentioned before, the controls interact well and sometimes in unexpected ways, so you have a huge range of possible sounds. This is definately not a metal only amp. It does sound good on about any setting. Even when scooping the mids you can still cut through the mix well enough. The presence control is quite important as it shapes the sound between the bass & mid range. I play on a Jackson KV2 with Lace Drop & Gain pickups, tuned to B. Pickup choice is quite important here as this amp will very much accentuate the sound coming out of your guitar (be it good or bad). It is also quite unforgiving for player errors. Playing this amp made me a better guitarist, because any mistakes or sloppy playing WILL be noticed by your public/band or in the studio. For example, artificial harmonics seems to be more difficult to nail on this amp, but when you do. The pre-amp is quiet compared to other high gain amps (Engl, Peavey)
Overall Impression — 9
I play in a death metal band, with quite some technical riffs (not only tremolo picking), and it's perfect. I've been playing for almost 8 years now and used to play on a Valvestate 8100 series. If it was lost or stolen I'd hunt them down and put them out of their misery. I would buy a new one if it got lost.
Reliability & Durability — 10
It has never broken down on me (or anyone I know Who has one), but I've only played it for a month or 2. It has done a few gigs already and had no problems with it what'soever. It has been stress tested as in I put a 3:1 mismatched load on it (24 ohm load on 8 ohm head) at maximum volume and the output transformer held up well. Bogner is known for their reliability and build quality so I don't expect any problems with it.
Features — 9
The Uberschall an all tube (6 pre, 4 power) 120w amplifier, hand made in the US. It has excellent build quality with high end components. It's is very heavy, you don't want to haul this baby for longer than 10 minutes. The model I have is the first blue rev. series (with symbols serial #) and a metal grille. It sounds brighter than the early Uberschalls. The Uberschall has 2 channels, clean & lead with the basic controls (channel volume, presence, treble, mid, bass & gain). Nothing more nothing less so it's very basic. The controls interact very well with each other, so you can get any sound you want, from blues to death metal. The effects loop is tube powered, and has a volume knob, so you can use it as a boost during solos or clean parts. It comes with a footswitch to Switch channels and turn on/off the fx loop. The footswitch is sturdy and the knobs feel very solid. For the rest: it has bias points for easy biassing, the head is switchable between 4, 8 or 16 ohm and it has 2 speaker outputs (not stereo).