Price paid: $ 1264
Purchased from: ebay member
Sound — 8
I use an Epiphone Les Paul Standard edition with humbucker pickups. This amp matches my music style perfectly, since it was built for dropped tunings. The amp always makes a low, buzzing sound, no matter the environment or setting. It's quiet and low enough so that playing will cover it, but if you're idling it can get quite annoying. The clean tone stays clean at any volume, but since the amp harnesses the low tones, it can tend to shake anything in the house:P The high end gain channel just may be the most brutal and intense built-in distortion you'll ever hear.
Overall Impression — 10
This is definatly the most impressive piece of equipment I've ever seen. if anyone would like to learn more in detail on the specs and such, visit crateamps.com. When the amp is on, it has gorgeous cosmetics. the Power and standby switches glow Orange, as do little Orange lights behind each tube.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I'm not sure of the material, but it is enclosed by at least an inch of wood, so it is hardly possible to harm any of the interior. The Cabinets have very durable casters which haven't shown any wear an tear yet. The only time the amp has broken down was a shorted fuse. easy, cheap fix. The amp however is due for some new tubes and a check-up. I can always depend on this amp rain or shine.
Features — 10
This amp can cover a few music styles. It has an 'okay' clean tone(Channel 1). Doesn't even compare to a Marshall's clean tone, but is perfect for all those clean slow parts in metal and rock. The distortion channel(2) is more of an overdrive, perfect for old rock and punk. very edgey. Then the high-end Gain Channel (3) has the very low, tough, and full grundge sound for professional metal tones. This amp was designed for lower and dropped tunings. There is a loop channel of course, for mixing your own effects. Each Channel has treble, mid, bass, gain, level, and an initial frequency knob. Then for a Master tone setting, There is an EEK! and UGH! knob. These knobs fine tune the settings of the cones in the cabinet. UGH! loosens them, alowing them to move more freely, giving a lower feel, and EEK! tightens them to give better reaction from the amp. In the back, there is a send and retrieve knob to acommodate for effect volumes, and a level knob and jack output for output levels if you are using a PA or recording device. I don't use this much however because I find that tone is much better if the amp is mic'ed. The head can power 6 cabinets. I use this amp at home, school functions, and small gigs. It is definately powerful enough, considering it's 300 watts of 16 tubes. The wattage shouldn't be scary, it just has more head room, alowing a brighter, more full sound at lower volumes. The head has two transformers and two ventilation fans, making it one of the most reliable amps you can get.