Hot Rod Deluxe III review by Fender

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  • Features: 10
  • Sound: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 9.5 (2 votes)
Fender: Hot Rod Deluxe III
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Price paid: $ 600

Purchased from: Private owner

Features — 10
Volume, drive, treble, middle bass, & presence pots with a bright & a drive switch. Classic power & standby switch. The preamp out/effects loop is perfect for your modulation pedals and a looper. Loaded with controls and came with a foot switch & TSR cable. The 12" speaker sounded great when I got it and it has "aged" beautifully. It clearly speaks mellow to Steve Vai rage.

Sound — 10
I play many different musical styles and it is exquisite for all. Channel 2 is the drive and it comes with a 2-button foot switch to turn drive on and for "more drive." No nose unless you really crank up a drive and boost pedal, but I think that is more the pedals. I should get a noise gate pedal. Sounds great with my Les Paul or American Strat. Can do some sweet blues with my Hagstrom Viking. It handles drive via the input volume perfectly and you have infinite control of the level of grit, or it can as sweetest-sounding as you need.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I have no concern gigging with it. I've had it 2 years and the only thing that went wrong was a fuse blew. $2 later back in business. I always have spare fuses taped to the inside of every amp I own. Of all my Fender amps I've never had an issue. They are as tough as the day is long. The standard Tolex covering is great; looks strong and somewhat bump-proof.

Overall Impression — 10
It is a great match for my playing styles as it is so versatile. I've had Fender amps most of my playing life and this one is amazing. I would by another one in a New York minute if it was stolen. Same goes for my Champion X2. This is the sterling example of a classic Fender amp. The tones, power, and ability enable one to play any type of music. Its 40 watts sounds a lot more than that. This amp truly represents the true & legendary Fender sound. Clean when you want it, volume pot on the guitar can easily make it growl and the built in drive is great if you have a guitar with low-powered pickups.

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