Price paid: $ 400
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Features — 10
Fender Mustang V v.2 modeling guitar amplifier head features:
- 18 amp models, 37 effects, 100 onboard factory and user presets
- Low-noise power amp platform
- 150 watts of power
- Intuitive control panel and LCD window
- Headphone output; auxiliary input
- Dual XLR and dual 1/4" line outputs with level control
- Onboard chromatic tuner
- USB connectivity for high-quality low-latency audio output/computer connectivity
- 4-button footswitch included
- Fender FUSE software included as a free download
- Ableton Live 8 Fender Edition included
Sound — 9
Sitting next to my Peavey Ultra Plus, the Mustang holds it's own in a lot of ways. Playing a variety of styles, I can say this amp will do everything well, but very few things great. The versatility is it's most obvious strong suite, the amp attempts to emulate 18 other amps, and without owning the originals to compare it to, it provides some unique sounds off all of them. It can crank up with the best of them! The onboard overdrive settings all have their own uses and sound on-par to every SS distortion I've used. The paired cabinet allows the stack to handle high gain settings pretty well. The 37 effects are versatile and of quality. The convenience of plugging up this amp and being able to make an effects chain is significantly more appealing than setting up several pedals and experimenting. Overall, the Mustang V leaves little to be desired in the sound department.
Reliability & Durability — 9
The build quality on everything here is top notch. Solid state styled amps are known for being pretty reliable under a reasonable load (tossing it in your car). The all-digital aspect scares me in some ways, as analog does genuinely tend to not all-out break, but rather show symptoms and slowly die. The footswitches are high quality and have already taken a pretty big beating (I have a habit of slamming my feet onto them). If anything on the amp seems cheap, it would be the preset selector knob. It feels a bit too loose, and it really sensitive. Although, this is a minor gripe in the grand scheme of things.
Overall Impression — 9
I've been playing for going on five years. I run a variety of guitars including a Gibson 05 Explorer, Epiphone Korina Explorer and an Agile A-2000 baritone. I love the variety of sounds and ease of use the amp provides, but I'm not a big fan of the set limitations on what you can do with the amp. It allows you to only set up 4 effects at a time in 4 separate categories, having two separate mods or distortions going in your chain is an option that doesn't exist. Comparing it to other modeling amps, it's on par with all of them, and its pricing is very competitive.