Sound — 9
I use a Schecter Hellraiser and a Jackson SL2H Soloist with active and passive pickups respectively. I honestly prefer passive pickups, but for some reason, my Hellraiser is the only guitar I've heard that sounds fantastic with the actives. I purchased the head to satisfy my need for gain, and it does that perfectly. For how much gain this head has on tap, it is near dead quite, my passive pickups make a bit more noise, I pulled out my old Boss Noise Supressor and it killed everything, I don't really use it, but thought it was a good point to make. The clean has plenty of headroom and sounds great with effects. The gain channel can get quite a few different types of distortion, pretty much an entire array of genres from rock to metal, I have even played some jazz and blues through it. I almost forgot the LOW END RESPONSE. Oh my the bass this thing can produce. Palm mutes take on a whole new roll with this head. Roll the presence knob around and you'll be very surprised. The presence knob doesnt't operate the same as most amplifiers and it tells you right in the manual, a bit difficult to explain, but by far my favorite knob on the amplifier. This is the only amp I have play that has so much gain that can ALL be used. It doesnt't flub out or get harsh, it literally just tightens and thickens up the sound as the gain knob turns clockwise. I have played most of the boutique and high end amplifiers out there, Framus, Engl, Splawn, Mako, tons of different Mesa's including the amazing Mark IV, and in my opinion this has by far the best sound for very heavy distortion. Meaning super tight compressed in your face sounds, if that isn't what your after, maybe look elsewhere, because even at lower gain levels, the sound is still fairly tight and compressed. Get's a 9, there is no such thing as a perfect 10 sounding amp.
Overall Impression — 10
The overall impression of this amplifier so far is everything I expected and a bit more, I do believe I am a Bogner man now (for the time being anyhow) if the amplifier were lost or stolen I would purchase another whenever possible. Only thing I would change is I would probably save the extra money for the matching Uberkab, I have a Standard Mesa cab now, sounds great, but I have heard very good things about the Uberkab. Hope this review helps. If you play several types of music and needs MIDI controlling or possibly built in reverb, possibly look into something else. If you are a distortion addict and want nothing more than to be able to shake your house with some palm mutes, than the Uberschall may just be the way to go.
Reliability & Durability — 10
The amp has amazing build quality, very heavy as well for just a head. The carrying strap is very sturdy and feels as though it could sustain much more than just the weight of the head itself. The metal grille in the front is a nice touch, I honestly prefer the clothe grille since I think it looks nicer when matched with a cab, but this is a personal preference and I would much rather have a head with a metal grille, than wait 3 months for Bogner to build me one. I would not gig with a backup regardless of what amplifier/gear I use. Nobody can predict what can happen, and yes this may be a perfectly constructed amp, but it is still relying on a few tubes of glass with filaments inside them, so for that reason, always have a backup.
Features — 7
I hate reading reviews from someone Who is completely in love with their gear, so they deliberately make a reason to ignore a flaw or shortcoming, I will try and be as honest and thorough as possible, hopefully someone Who is considering this head will get some use out of this review. I believe this particular Uberschall was made in 2007 though I would have to check the serial number to be certain. It is in perfect shape with the metal grille option. The head itself is a 120 watt head carrying 4 power tubes (el34) and 6 pre-amp tubes (chinese Sovtek). It has two channels, a very basic clean and a high gain. I will be completely honest in that I am so happy with this head it prompted me to write my first review ever. However, this is not a very versatile amp, the two channels do what they say they do. The clean channel is very basic, almost sterile, is very good at handling effects and can be changed quite a bit via the tube buffered effects loop. The high gain channel is why I purchased the head, I listen to all types of music, but when I sit down with a guitar, I want to play the heavy stuff. The gain channel is breathtaking, you can get nice chunky rock rhythms or some of the nastiest compressed distortion I have heard without effects. Footswitch was included, has an ohm selector on the back, effects send level which can also be a boost if not using any. There isn't too much I wish the head had, maybe the option for MIDI controlling. The lack of multiple channels and no reverb or MIDI switching, and a fairly sterile clean channel is why I rated this at a 7 for versatility. The gain channel is the saving grace, just because it has incredible distortion and I love it, that doesnt't make it versatile.