Valve Standard Review

manufacturer: Epiphone date: 10/25/2007 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Epiphone: Valve Standard
The Epiphone Valve Standard guitar amplifier is a 15-watt Class A, push-pull monster, with slick vintage looks, 16 DSP Selections, separate DSP Reverb, a 12" speaker and a gutsy musical preamp section.
 Sound: 9.7
 Overall Impression: 9.7
 Reliability & Durability: 9
 Features: 8.3
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (3) 31 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.3
Valve Standard Reviewed by: unregistered, on april 16, 2007
2 of 4 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 514.08

Purchased from: Thomann

Features: The Amp was probably made in 2006. It's a single channel, all-tube amplifier, with 3 x 12AX7 and 2 x EL84 Sovtek tubes. It has three digital effects (chorus, flanger, delay) that you can mute, and each effect comes with five different profiles, for a total of 15 effects. Well, 16, if you take the reverb in account. The cabinetry is really good, and the thing looks beautiful, '60s like. The speaker is a 12 inch Epiphone custom speaker that does the job really well. It has the following knobs: gain, treble, middle, bass, DSP, Reverb Level, Master volume. It also features a standby switch, which is very practical when you want to take a break or when you want to heat up the tubes before you use them. I really enjoy the fact that it has only one channel because it makes the way you act with the guitar and the pedals more important. You also get to understand how natural distortion works, when you push the gain or volume knob up. It has no effects loop, and no headphone jack. It only features an input jack, an extension speaker out jack, and a DSP switching pedal that comes in the package. I use the amp in my room, a 20 m room, in which it sounds really too bassy. But use it in a hangar, or in a basement, or in any other larger place, and the sound is just fine. Rated only 8 because of the lack of headphones out and effects loop. Also because it's really, really heavy. // 8

Sound: I usually use this amp with my two main guitars. One modified Washburn HB-30 (Hollow-body guitar, sort of a copied ES335). I mounted Seymour Duncan pickups on it (SH2 - SH4). I also use it with my Epiphone Les Paul Standard, which is also modified, with the replacement of the pickups. The new ones are Seymour-Duncan SH1 and SH5. I also use a Fender Lite Ash Telecaster on it. I mainly play British rock n' roll and classic rock n' roll like Oasis, Blur, Coldplay, Radiohead, or some heavier stuff like Led Zeppelin. Some country, some blues, a bit of everything really. The good thing is that this amplifier is very versatile. You can play pretty much anything on it If you set it up right. My two main guitars have bold, full and rich sounds, and my telecaster has that bright tone you would expect from it. And both styles can be played perfectly on that thing, as long as you know how to use the equalizer. Again, the amp is very bassy, mainly because the speaker is new and needs to rumble a bit before it comes right. But you'll have to push that bass know down at the beginning. A good thing is that the amp isn't noisy. And you would expect it to be noisy as it's a class A amplifier. But it's not. There are two ways to distort the sound. You can either push the gain know up, and gradually push the volume know up. Or you can do it the opposite way. But you should note that the second way will blow your ear drums away and is not recommended If you're in a small room. This amplifier can be really loud when you push the knobs up. You should also note that I don't think this amp is made for metal, really heavy rock n' roll players, but more for classic rock, blues or country players. In fact, you can get any sound with it with pedals, but using only the amp, you won't get any brutal distortion. The maximum you can get out of that amp is a good crunchy sound. // 10

Reliability & Durability: As I said, the amplifier is really heavy, and the cabinetry is well done. You can park your car on it and it still will stand, I mean it. I would definitely gig with this amp, and I did. And I wouldn't consider taking a backup amp at all. The thing will plainly do the job. You'll consider getting an extension speaker to broaden the sound of the amp on a stage. But that's it. The amplifier has never let me down. The only thing that I'm concerned about is that it tends to heat a lot. If you use it for like two hours, you can't keep your finger on the front panel more than 15 seconds, or you'll burn yourself. I don't know If it's normal for an all-tube amplifier. But that's the only thing that I will have to look after in the future. Well, I'll also make sure no one touches it, because it's so darn pretty, 9 because of the heat concern. // 9

Overall Impression: In conclusion, I can say that for the price I payed it, this amplifier really does the job he's asked for. And with no troubles. You can play pretty much anything on it as long as you set it right. It reacts really well when you put some pedals on the line. I use it with a Marshall JH-1 for distortion, a Jim Dunlop cry baby wah, an ED1 Compressor, and they all sound superb with that amp. I've been playing for two years ony, but I've had the opportunity of testing lots of other amplifiers and this one really made my day when I tested it for the first time. And I really trust its brand, Epiphone. It's a classy looking, great sounding amplifier, and I recommend it for anyone. If it were stolen, I'd beat up the guy Who'd stole it and make him give it back to me. If I lost it one day, I definitely would consider buying it again. The only thing I have to say is watch out for the bassy sound when you use it for the first time, it can sound ugly, but eventually it fades as you use it. // 10

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overall: 9.5
Valve Standard Reviewed by: unregistered, on june 14, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Marty's Music Shop

Features: Finally, this is the sound I've been looking for since I started playing guitar over 12 years ago. First, this is the most reasonably priced best sounding tube amp I've come across. And believe it or not 15 watts in a tube amp, is MORE than enough to gig. My amp was made in 2006. It goes from warm clean tones to perfectly crunched classic rock and roll growl. It only has one channel, but this is fine for me I use a tube pre-amp petal with two channels and a bypass for three volumes/tones at my feet. The chorus/flange/delay leaves some what to be desired. But they sound good. No headphone jack, but i don't use that anyway. I originally bought the amp for practicing and studio use, but took it to practice and its now my gigging amp. I could use it by itself, but i am running it through my Fender Stage 160 2x12 160w amp for a little more bottom when gigging out. I give it an 8 for features bc of only having one channel, but i found i like that better, its easier to control. // 8

Sound: My rig is a Fender '72 Telecaster Deluxe, into a Korg petal tuner, to a Seymour Duncan Twin Tube Classic pre-amp. Into the Valve Standard, then from the line out to the "input" of my Fender Stage 160.... I've been gigging with a rock and roll cover band for a year and a half now and have tried the following amps (all were good, but left me wanting more) Marshall AVT, Crate all tube 100 watt to a Fender silver front cab, then a Peavey ValveKing 50 watt amp, then the Fender Stage 160 solid state. This is the first tube amp i've used that wasn't noisey and handles external petals well. The way I have it set to clean when moderately played, but when i really pound it hard it starts to growl ever so slightly on the neck pick up, but is still smooth on the bridge. From there, the first channel on the petal is medium growl, same volume and the third channel more volume and growl. Also switching from neck to bridge pick ups varies the sound perfectly. Distortion is PERFECT for me. On its own it probably would be less than adiquate for some, but a petal out front beefs it right up. As I said before, this is "the sound" I've been searching for since I picked up an axe for the first time! // 10

Reliability & Durability: I haven't owned the amp long enough, but its VERY tough, covered in heavy steel. Its a bull dozer of a 15 watt amp. I've heard of people dropping them down stairs and not skipping a beat. I do take a back up (my Fender) only because I use it as a solid state booster for the sound. // 10

Overall Impression: If this thing was stolen, I'd buy another right away. Did I mention I love this amp! As I said before, this is the sound I've been looking for since I started playing. I am the rythm guitar player and lead singer for my band. This amp is perfect for my place in the band, It would be plenty for lead as well. For those of you (like I once was) Who thing 15 watts isn't enough... I dare you to try it! // 10

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overall: 8.8
Valve Standard Reviewed by: Hakael, on october 25, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Purchased from: Ax In Hand

Features: Not sure when this particular amp was made, between 2006-2007. It's a 15watt, class A, all tube amp (3-12AX7, 2-EL84), 12" speaker with 16 DSP "settings" (which can be muted) and a seperate DSP Reverb. It has a single channel with three band EQ, master volume and gain knob. On the back, it's got an output for an 8ohm ext. speaker, and you can disconnect the cabinet speaker (which is also 8ohm), plus you have an input for the optional footswitch. I'd say it's very much like a beefier version of the Epiphone Valve Junior with added tone control and a little bit more flexibility. By virtue of the master volume, gain, and your guitars own volume pot, you can get anything from truly voiced cleans, to a crunchy hard rock tone. It's quiet enough for bedroom practice, while still giving you almost all your tonal options, and yet can pack a solid punch when you need it for a gig. At an akward 45lbs, it's not terribly heavy to lug from gig to gig, and it feels very solid and well built. I'm giving it a 9 because I don't see any other tube combo that gives this all for such a low cost. // 9

Sound: I've used it with a variety of guitars, namely a Schecter Gryphon with Duncan Designed pickups, a Schecter Hellraiser w/EMG (81/85), and a Greg Bennett Semi-hollow with Duncan Designed humbuckers. I played a varying array of music from soft rock cleans and dirty blues, to stone hard rock. One thing I noted when playing each of these guitars through the amp, was that it portrayed and showcased quite well, the individual nuances of each guitar. From the high output/tone of the EMGs in my Hellraiser, to a very warm and mellow town from the Greg Bennett semi-hollow. Where on another amp, each of the three guitars may sound quite similar and harder to tell apart, the Epiphone Valve Standard let each guitars own individuality stand out. The tone of the amp, probably due to it's speaker, is a little heavier on the bass, but that can be adjusted easily with the EQ. The almost entirely closed back of the cabinet may contribute to the bassy sound as well. Like I said earlier, between the master vol., gain, EQ, and guitar controls, any tone up to hard rock seems possible. The DSP effects, while not particulary noteworthy as far as sound are concerned, are a nice addition if you don't have the pedals to use. Fortunately they can be muted, so you're not stuck with using them when you don't want to. Although it can easily get to the dirty grit of hard rock, it will need the help of a overdrive/distortion pedal if you're looking for heavy metal boom and crunch. A noise gate would probably help as well, as when the volume or gain goes up (quite expectantly) the noise level follows. I have to admit, it never reached a very annoying level though, and was expected. // 9

Reliability & Durability: The amp is approximately 45lbs and seems to be built quite solidly. I've only had it for a week so I can't say much about it breaking down nor do I expect it to anytime soon. I think part of the beauty of the amp is it's simplicity in controls and design. Although I don't really gig, I know a few others that do, and after letting them try the amp, they would, without a doubt, be comfortable gigging with the amp. Even got a friend to purchase one as he stated "for the price, I'd be nuts not to have it at least as a backup." My only concern, is when it's been in use for an extended period of time, the faceplate (where all the knobs sit) can get extremely hot to the touch. I don't really have any idea as to what effect this can have on the longevity of the amp's life, and thus I don't usually play it for very long. Although I have the manufacturer's warranty to help easy any concerns, the fact that the price of the amp was amazingly low for what it is, also puts my mind at ease. It's a plus for cold winter nights that'll be coming along soon. // 8

Overall Impression: I play generally hard rock to heavy metal, and just now getting into blues. An overdrive/distortion pedal and a chorus would defintely be a must for this. I also intend on getting possibly a compression and maybe a noise gate (although the noise gate isn't of high priority). I also own a Peavey VK100 and a Roland Microcube, so this amp fit just perfectly into the midrange gap between the other two amps. Although I used to use the Microcube primarily as my practice amp, I've been using the Standard more and more often. The main reason I still keep the Microcube is it's easy portability. My favorite feature of this amp is the fact that it's 15watts, and has a 3 band EQ. I used to have a Valve Junior, but I wanted a little more power and flexibility, which this offered, for not much more in cost. Cost-wise, no other 15watt tube combo came close. If I wanted something along the lines of an all tube Fender, for example, it would cost me $50 more for 10 less watts, and no EQ. If this were stolen/lost, I'd purchase a new one without hesitation, where as if my more expensive Peavey were stolen, I'd replace that as well, but it'd take me a heck of a lot longer in order to get the money (and hunt down the bastard). // 9

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