RFX120 review by Crate

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  • Sound: 4
  • Overall Impression: 4
  • Reliability & Durability: 5
  • Features: 4
  • Reviewer's score: 4.3 Poor
  • Users' score: 7.1 (21 votes)
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Price paid: $ 449.99

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 4
I'm currently using a Standard (Mex) Stratocaster with this amp. This amp doesn't really suit my style at all, I guess you could say. I like alot of classic rock, classic punk rock (not Green Day), blues (SRV, Chuck, B.B.), hard rock, local rock bands in Baltimore (Fishnets, Shambles, Blondsai) and some current rock (probably only RCHP, and maybe some other). Anyways, this amp can't do any of those genres too well. Except for Hard Rock, the Rhythm is decent for AC/DC, Velvet Revolver, and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Clean is decent, not good, Rhythm is decent, not good, and solo is just no. Each channel has one sound, and none of them are grear. It's made to be a loud amp at 120W, but that's how they get you to buy it. Most people, like my dad, see 120W watts and go "That's an awesome deal!" Yet, they look past the crappy tone, and technical problems this amp endures. But, the thing is, no kid Who's just starting to play guitar needs 120 watts. Get him a nice 15W Fender Blues Jr., and save yourself the extra $50. Not only is this amp's wattage a little overkill for a beginner, the distortion is brutal, a dn overkill on the Solo channel. Kids will play on the solo and think they're rock gods, until they play on the clean settings and realize how many mistakes they are making.

Overall Impression — 4
Well, a mis-match on my dad's part. He got me an amp designed for Greenday, and Panic At The Disco punk wannabes around the USA (hopefully not world) who think any power chord with a little bit of gain sounds good. When instead he could have gotten a better deal on a better amp. But, that's what happens when you get "expert advice" from a Guitar Center employee. I've been playing since October of last year, so I got this amp after about 3 full months of playing. I also own (as stated before) a Mexican Strat (which was also a present). I wish that I had at least been given the chance to check out this amp before my dad purchased it (it was a suprise gift). I would have at least tried out some other amps there, and made my decision. If this was stolen or lost I would most definitly not buy it again, and if given it again, would sell it before I'd open the box. What I love about this amp nothing. I do not "love" absolutely anything about this amp. However, I did like the reverb, and the Rhythm channel was okay in my books. What I hate about this amp are all the terrible delays, the other effects are dull (the wah is horrible), the channels not being good at any one thing, but isntead being okay or crappy at most things, and most of all the dang Solo channel. If my dad hadn't bought this amp, I was planning to use the other money I had to buy a Vox, why, dad, why? Though, I do thank him very much for spending so much on an amp for me, though not worth it, and buying me the Mex Strat = worth it.

Reliability & Durability — 5
I haven't had any problems as far as the amp breaking down so far, but it cannot be played too loud on the Solo Channel without giving out a high-pitched ring. This amp is also kinda heavy. Not back-breaking, but some skinnier dudes (such as myself) might struggle with stairs or long transports from the parking lot. But, luckily it has wheels, though not the nicest, they work fine. Therefore, the amp is durable, but it's sound isn't too "reliable".

Features — 4
This amp was bought as a Christmas gift for me from my dad this past Christmas, so that makes it a 2005. I play alot of music, the main stuff I play are Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, New York Dolls, and good ole' Zeppelin. This is a 3 channel solid state amp, those channels being Clean, Rhythm, and Solo. Has alot of nice effects, but the reverb was the only one that impressed me, and a very unneccessary automatic tuner. So, the channels: Clean - nice, but soft, and lacks that nice tone. It's nice until you realize it just sounds like your guitar strings would if they were just alot louder (by this I mean a very plain, and cold sound). I try blues on this, and its clean, but I hate the tone on it. Very one dimensional. It's clean, but it's nothing worth what you pay for this amp. Rhythm - a fun one to fool around with. Never very clean, doesn't sound too greats with the gain down, but can a pretty gritty sound with the gain up. Basically, by dubbing it the name "rhythm" I think they had the AC/DC sound in mind other than say that of The Rolling Stones or The Smiths. It can get, like I said, quite dirty, and gritty with the gain all the way up, and you can get a tolerable tone of this channel. Nothing too impressive, just one of those "can do most things 'okay'" kinda channels. Solo - quite an unneccessary channel. Dirty, no matter how high the gain, and tends to ring and hurt the hears at what most would consider a normal volume (about 30%-40% on the knob, 6 and up on guitar knob). Very, very dirty, constantly hearing buzzing/fuzzy noises that sound horrible, and really take away from the joy of playing. The channel sounds so bad, it is constantly making you adjust the knobs every other session or so. I also have suffered slight ear damage (ringing for about a week to two weeks) from trying out the effects on this channel. Very disappointed. Never have been happy with this channel, probably never will. Effects - chorus, flange, phase shift, vibrato, octave down, touch-wah, and Reverse Wah, 15 delays, reverb. Reverb being the only one that I prefer to play with on a normal basis. The wahs aren't very noticable with gain on, and tend to drown-out your tone on the Clean channel. The Chorus, Flange, and Phase Shift were sounding great to begin with, but you immediately find out that they sound the same. The delays barely vary. You have single wave, double, etc. They all sound a little weird to me with the reverb and chorus on aswell. Like an over-exxagerated echo. Automatic Tuner - crap! "Beep beep beep!" is all you hear when you play becuase of this thing.

9 comments sorted by best / new / date

    RadioMuse
    Mr. Unregistered, you admitted yourself to be a beginner and apparently you've yet to discover the wonder that is the EQ settings. If you know how to use them the EQ can give you near-perfect tone for anything. The Solo Channel isn't that noisy, you're turning it up far too load. Turn it down to say 25% and *shock* it's not longer overload. Not to mention you're attack on the automatic tuner, it's a very convenient thing. Sure you can tune the guitar by ear or by a better tuning set up but it takes more time and the difference won't be audible to 95+% of the people who'll hear you play. Basically you're attacking this amp because you wanted tubes. You have less regard for tone and far more for the mechanics creating, which frankly mean nothing.
    cortrules09
    ive had this amp for about a year and three months now and i havent had many complaints, especially considering the price i paid. ive gigged with it several times and have had several people mistake it for a tube amp. the clean channel can acheive perfectly fine tone, you just have to know how to adjust your eq. overall id say its a great amp for the value!
    cortrules09
    ive had this amp for about a year and three months now and i havent had many complaints, especially considering the price i paid. ive gigged with it several times and have had several people mistake it for a tube amp. the clean channel can acheive perfectly fine tone, you just have to know how to adjust your eq. overall id say its a great amp for the price!
    atc228
    ive had this bad boy for about 2 years and i love it. as some have said before, its all about EQ. i only really use the reverb and a quick delay (makes it sound like im in a stadium haha) and with this amp thats all i really need. the only complaint i have about it is the feedback i get from it. it happens from about 10 o clock on. i usualy dont turn it up past 10 o clock because when i gig we just mic the thing, but the feedback is just annoying as hell. quick fix by getting a noise gate though so other wise i think this amp is amazing. i would say that i am qualified to judge this amp through the time i have had this, the multitude of other amps i have played through, and my gig experiences. EQ, EQ...
    ZippoTragedy
    Test drove this amp @ GC. Appealing in terms of low-level playing (sub 20%)and that's probably where I was attracted to it. I'm a relative noob in the guitar world - but here's my nickle tour of the amp: Ch 1: Dirty - and not ever going to clean up; Ch 2: Weak Rythm channel; Ch 3: Even Weaker Clean The Solo Channel (Dirty) is so Dirty that it makes it very difficult to use effectively, particularly if you're adding effects. The volume is actually directly proportionate to how far you twist the Gain knob - fubar. It is wicked Loud when cranked - mess your mellon up kind of loud. The Rythm channel - well, I haven't found a good use for that yet. The Clean channel - well, it sucks. There, I said it. Pathetically underpowered. The built in effects - arggg. Never again. Sure - it's got some effects (wooo-woooo-woooo). Tip: they flash blue every time you change channels - which means they're engaged. You have to rotate them counter-clockwise to the 6-o'clock position (each one) to turn off the effects. Annoying as hell. Clean channel cuts its output intermittently - meaning that if I crank it - it has no effect whatsoever until I get to about 8/10 - and then it makes a very unhealthy noise that sounds like a broken bone. Bottom Line: Not fully baked. Avoid. The Clean channel is pathetic.
    PRSweet
    I've owned this amp for two years and it's very tough in terms of durability (Its had "liquid" spilled all over it, and actually got hit by a car (about 15 MPH)) The sound is so-so on every channel. However after reading these comments I guess it may be an EQ inexperience problem. I'm not sure. I'm looking forward to suggestions. Solo-Fuzzy; Rythym-Weak; Clean- not bad. My clean channel gets all the action being it as I use a Boss MD-20. It gets some pretty good sounds. I'm looking into something else though. I don't use the effects much. Occasionally delay. The tuner is nice to have. My PRS SE custom has some tuning issues so it's a nice addition. Really loud and alot of bottom end. Like I said though any EQ tips would be helpful. I know my way around amps, but I could always stand to know more.
    jdudeinabadmood
    haha Mr unregistered, maybe if youd been playing for long than 3 months you wouldnt talk like that. also, you might wanna learn how to actually "play" your instrument before putting down punk musicians, however since your dad bought you all your equipment im sure your remarks just come from inexperience.