FM 212R review by Fender

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.4 (251 votes)
Fender: FM 212R

Price paid: $ 299

Purchased from:

Sound — 9
I am using a Gibson Les Paul Studio Plus, a Fender Standard Stratocaster, and an Ovation CC057 with this amp. It fits my style very well, because when I am not using the superb clean channel, I am using an overdrive or distortion pedal. When I actually use the amp's distortion, it gets a little noisy, especially with my Strat, once it goes up to about 4. One great thing about it is that it is loud! An ideal independent practice volume for me is at no louder than one, but fro about 7-10, there is not much of a difference in volume. The clean channel, as I said before, is wonderful. It sounds great with humbuckers or single coils or even the pickup in my acoustic-electric. Also, as I have said before, the distortion channel leaves much to be desired. While you can get a good sounding light overdrive, the brutalest distortion is no match for my pedals.

Overall Impression — 8
My band plays Radiohead-ish songs, and my amp can match the music very well. All of my pedals, wah, phasers, distortion, overdrive, noise suppressors, work fine with it, and I love the clean channel most of all. I'm not crazy about the distortion, or lack of functioning reverb, but I am not in any way disappointed with the amp.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I would definately use this amp in a gig without a backup, because, for the most part, I have not been disappointed by it yet. One frustrating thing that happened to my amp is that the reverb stopped working about a year after I had it, which wasn't due to any lack of care or maintenance.

Features — 8
I got my Fender FM 212R for Christmas of 2004. Seeing as I use only distortion and overdrive pedals, I can't tell you just how versatile it is, but it performs very well with the various styles of music that I play. The features that I never use on this amp are the overdrive/distortion setting, because the sound on these is somewhat lackluster, and the reverb, because it broke about a year after I got it. I kind of wish it had some on-board effects, but those are sometimes lacking the authenticity of real effects, so I am not too disappointed.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    godzilla 1969 is wasting his amp so much, you have pedals so you dont use the overdrive channels... what if they sound better than your pedals? (which they probably will) whats the point in buying an amp and then Never using it to its potential, you may as well go buy something even cheaper cos it wouldnt change your tone whatsoever. you could at least try messing with the other settings just in case you Do actually like them. i used to be the sort of person who Had to use his pedals, then when i got a new amp i realised how much i wasting time (and tone) to something which is in reality quite awquard and unnecessary.
    ArcherTheVMan... I have this amp, and yes I can kinda see your point, but the overdrive/distortion on this amp is limited no matter how much you mess with. You sorta have to use a pedal if you want a quality heavy distortion.
    In the first review, the reviewer complained about the lack of features. Sometimes amps sound good without effects. I own this amp and I love it.