Price paid: $ 250
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Sound — 10
Since I heard my first Crate I knew I had to get one. I play with a Jackson with EMG's so high gain is a must for me, but even with the gain turned down this thing sounds amazing. I don't really get to use the second channel but it had a decent tone before it stopped working. I liked it for the most part. But if you're a metal player like me the third channel is where you're gonna call home. I like the tone from the clean side of things. If you add a little reverb to any of these channels you wont be let down. As far as flexablity goes the sky is the limit with this amp. Although I noticed that at the higher volumes things can break up a bit. If you're standing next to the amp or next to any electrical appliance you will get some noise but as far as hissing and RFI(Radio Frequency Interferance), I haven't had any. The brutality of this amp is as brutal as a solid state can get.
Overall Impression — 9
I played the older version of this one before getting it and both of em are both good amps. I didn't even pay for this one I traded mine for it.(My friend had this one and I hooked it up to my cab and I got stuck with this one cause it stopped working without the cab so we traded) It was great a great trade though. His was a little louder, the second channel worked but there wasn't a mid frequency know, well it had one but it wasn't a traditional mid knob. It was labled as shape and controlled both distortion channels. He likes to play on the second channel, and I liked to play on the third channel(mine is stuck on it) and mine has the mid and the shape knob. So I was very pleased with the trade. I play mostly metal stuff so the third channel is where I mainly stay, and I can't get enough of it. I've been playing for about six years now, and play my Jackson with this amp NOFX. If I had bought this amp I would have got the warranty with it. But it still works fine so I can't complain. If there was a separate EQ section for the the high gain channel it would really be a steal for it's price. But I guess that's why It's only $280. If I got this one fixed and working on it's own. I wouldn't tell my friend I love this amp. It's mine forever now. I love this amp and wouldn't give anyone a chance to steal it much less let it get lost. I don't like that the thing won't play without a cab, but hey that's why I now own it. Comparing this one to my old one It's a tough call but I say this one has got it beat but not by much.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have had this amp for a few years now, and I can't be happier even with the little bumps and bruises it has both vanity and tech. The thing has yet to fail me. I kept it a garage that would flood constantly, In a closet, In a cold garage, In a Jam Room, In a closet, I even had to pawn it to pay of tickets. I got it back and it still worked fine. That's not even mentioning the shows and flights of stairs it's traveled to. I'm not rich so I can't afford a backup amp, but as far as I'm concerned as long as I got this one, I won't need one.
Features — 8
This amp was made for any situation you put it in. I have it in my room as my practice amp. I have played it at shows with and without PA's. it's got the power to handle anything you throw at it. I wouldn't suggest you throw things at it literally though. I think the amp is mono. I love the RCA inputs it's got on the front. I wish that I could play my guitar with distortion without The Music getting distorted though. I guess that's why it's mono and not stereo. The 1st channel has got crisp and clean tone. Good for ska. Also good for ska is the second channel. I really don't use the second channel though, because it's no longer available to me for some odd reason. I really love the third channel so it makes up for the loss of the second. The third channel is why I looked at Crate for my first amp. The tone I get out of it pleases me about almost every time I go to plug in. The reverb is a real plus. I love having the extention cab but for some reason after I plugged it in. It wont play with out the cab. I think this amp was made in 2004 which makes it 4 years old now.