FW120HS review by Crate

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 9.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (18 votes)
Crate: FW120HS

Price paid: £ 258

Purchased from: Reverb

Sound — 9
I usually use this amp with my Ibanez RG370DX (kick ass guitar!) and it crunches it's way through metal classics and rock. At high volumes the high gain channel get a bit of feed back which can bite but apart from that it's quite good. To be honest the distortion or high gain channel is quite weak so I use my Boss pedal on the clean or overdrive channel to make up for it.

Overall Impression — 10
I play lots of different music, I play RHCP, Green Day, Metallica, Black Sabbath, The Killers and much more and the Crate performs amazingly everytime I use it. I have been playing guitar for about 5 1/2 years and bass for around 6 months. I have a couple of replica strats, a replica explorer, an Ibanez RG370DX and an Acoustic guitar plus a Squier affinity series J-Bass and a Yamaha RBX375 5-string bass. I Play these through: Guitar: either a Line 6 Spider III 15 watt, My Crate FW120 HS or a Marshall MS-4 mini stack. Bass: Fender Rumble 15 watt If it were stolen I would consider buying another but I might upgrade to a Marshall JVM410 HS or a Marshall KK2203 HS. If there was something I wished I had asked before buying it, it would be "Dad can I borrow some money to get the other cabinet?". That is the only thing it lacks in my opinion, the full stack, powerful look. I ultimately chose the Crate because it was the best amp I could afford at the time and because it was the only half stach within my price range. I wish it had a gutsy distortion channel like some of the older Crate half stacks I have used but only a bad workman blames his tools!

Reliability & Durability — 10
I would gig this amp without a backup as it has never let me down before at home or at the studio. The amp has never broken down throughout my ownership of it and as I purchased it new, it has always worked. I have read many reviews of the particular amp in this half stack set-up and I have never read anywhere that one has broken down or blown up or anything out of the ordinary. Crate have a fantastic warranty on these amps as well, their 5/2 warranty gives 5 years warranty on speakers and 2 years warranty on wiring. It might be the other way round but I cannot find the Labels that came with it.

Features — 9
Crate 2008 120w Half Stack. Great amp for studio or home use, I play rock, Indie and metal and with my Boss MT-2 pedal it sounds like a Marshall kk2203. 3 channel: Clean, overdrive and high gain with 3 button footswitch. Reverb, echo and phaser effects but no headphone jack which is probably a good thing or I'd be deaf. I wish it had a decent distortion channel so I didn't have to lug all my pedals around with me but it has enough power for me.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    I`ve got one of these, couldn`t be happier with it. I play a Schecter Custom Tempest, and a weird Jackson clone with UltraSonic pickups, I can get just about any sound I want with just those few things. Worth the measly $500.