BelAir 212 review by Carvin

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.5 (25 votes)
Carvin: BelAir 212
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Price paid: $ 599

Purchased from: Carvin

Sound — 10
I currently use Epiphone Les upgraded pickups and a Kramer 424 (h-s-h). Right now I plug in straight to get a feel of the amp, effects delta tube driver, digi hot head and a Pandora Px4. Amp sounds smooth, crisp, clear and articulate on the clean channel, the presence on the back pushes this channel over the edge with definition. I will not mention other amps here but it is up there with those. The amp has it own quality sound as well. Dirty channel, classic over driven tone, Vintaged Voiced, more or less 60's 70's tween type of thing going on. The eq is very responsive, take the time to find your sound there is a lot there.

Overall Impression — 9
I play, folky stuff, metal, classic rock, rock etc, this amp is for people that love tone and are so called tone searching. This amp can be loud as hell but can be played at bedroom levels ok - no pro there. Was hoping for V30, my first set but, they came with carvins, kinda sux but they will do for a little while. But again good. Breaks up nice - probably will get better. Thanks hope I helped someone out there.

Reliability & Durability — 8
Had the amp for 4 days now, build like a tank, they use really good wood, tolex is nicely fitted. It looks 40 years old, classic. So cool. They have to save money so handle is rubber - looks like leather and the knobs are plastic. Switches are metal inputs are solid, they put it where it counts. Pots and equip inside solid.

Features — 8
all tube 50 watts, 2 channel clean and dirty(overdrive). This is a Vintage voiced amp, you will need to build up to metal etc; you guys know what I mean... features are solid for the price- trust me I looked everywhere and beyond. Presence on the back, effects loop, line out and reverb. Reverb is subtle on first few settings then increases. Was hoping for V30 but came with Carvin speakers. They are not broken in yet but sound really good so far.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    Straydogger
    I've had my Belair since 1997 or so and still love it. Very loud for a 50 watt amp. Sounds great with my Strat or with humbuckers. I like it so much I went out and bought a SX200 to have on the side. It's another fine Carvin product.