Kick Start 25 review by Carlsbro

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.6 (9 votes)
Carlsbro: Kick Start 25

Price paid: $ 146.4

Purchased from: Hessle Music Centre

Sound — 9
Though as I mentioned above I play mainly indie rock, I let my younger brother loose on this amp with some Green Day and Mettallica and he said it sounded better than his best friends Marshall 30 watt, though he said he still preferred his Peavey ten watter. What would he know. Anyway, the variety is good as with enough tweaking you'll get your sound (as long as it isn't reverb heavy). As I play garage rock style music, my distortion is often grimey and gritty but never enough to kill the tone which the amp retains brilliantly. And, as other Tele players will tell you, tone is everything. It has a fair bit of hum once you really starting pushing it, but its not an annoying fuzz, its a warm buzz. It can get annoying, but no amp makes you want to sit and listen to feedback all day. If you really wanna go ape sht, whack up the gain to full, give your volume seven and let your distortion make the noise, not the volume.

Overall Impression — 9
I've been playing for three years now and have gigged four times in a mid-sized hall with this amp and an American Tele. The one time I messed up was when forgot to use the footswitch socket for RP-80. Instead, I put my guitar lead into the pedal then ran the pedal into the input of my amp. As soon as we went into the chorus of Song 2 by Blur and I stomped my pedal for juice, my lead got snagged and came out. Instant fuck up. The hole song went ka-put. Why am I telling you this? Because its you or your other equipment that'll let you down, not the Carlsbro 25.

Reliability & Durability — 10
This amp is more sturdily built than my friends amps, but of course it won't compare to, say, a Laney 30 or a Peavey 50. Don't worry about it though; short of putting your foot through the front, the Carlsbro 25 won't shut up on you, even when gigging. I highly reccomend you make sure the rest of your rig is perfect before you start though; the only way this amp's gonna suffer is if your other gear is letting it down.

Features — 9
As typical of a british amp (see Laney, Marshall ect. for evidence), the Carlsbro deals in volume and different levels of gain. I play mainly indie rock and punk and this amp suits me down to the ground. Its main features include master volume, gain control, equalization controls, a dedicated headphone socket, a dedicated footswitch socket, a dissapointingly weak reverb knob. Being a noise polluter, this amp has easily enough blunt strength to handle small live venues and, with a little tweaking, you'll have the right sound for you, from razor sharp metal to pulverizing powerchord punk-pop. Interestingly, it shuns the convention and has a blue power-on light instead of a red one. This makes up for the crappy reverb in my book.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Man, i got this amp and i dont like it at all, the distortion is terrible, the reverb doesnt even sound, it doesnt even sound man, you can turn the dial all the way up to the max and it wont sound man, how can you give it a 9,4 man.