TBX150H review by Ibanez

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 7
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.1 (13 votes)
Ibanez: TBX150H

Price paid: $ 250

Purchased from: GuitarCenter Online

Sound — 8
Through this, I'm using a Schecter Black Hawk guitar, tuned to either D standard or drop-C. I'm playing either metal, death metal or a pseudo-industrial metal. This map shines through perfectly. I have little experience with the clean channel. To be honest I mainly use it as a kill Switch for dead stops. But that's only because I haven't spent much time EQ-ing for a clean sound I like. So far the amp has always been used in a carpeted room, with me roughly 6' to 10' away, in this setting the most feed back I get is during dead-stops and at about 80% gain feedback is more of a glowing hum. In my (concrete floor) garage, I stand about 2' away and notice little undesirable feedback (that's important... as I find some to be intentional and creative). A friend of mine has used this amp on the Hot channel to pull off more classic-rock type sounds he likes. But I find the distortion goes from blues to the most br00talz death metal you can imagine, and just about everywhere in between.

Overall Impression — 9
The amount of gain this head is equipped with will satisfy any metal-head's taste for the grind. I have been playing guitar for a few years, and try to keep my setup as simple as I can. For the price I feel like this head was a steal (since the cabinet I received was actually free... ) so if you're a budget-pulled musician with a free cabinet lying around this head will do what you need and then some. I compared this to many an amp... and for my budget there just wasn't any amp good for the type of metal I play worth buying in my budget. I do not regret this purchase one bit!

Reliability & Durability — 7
I will admit I've only had this amp for about 2 months. But so far it's running as good as day 1. I'm not sure if I'd ever need a backup to be honest (guys Who hate solid-state contend otherwise) but I feel like one should have a backup for everything if gigging. The amp has a 5 year warranty. That's right. Get it registered the day after you buy it and you're set for a whole year if it fails. The foot Switch, despite coming with a warranty card, has no serial number so I wasn't able to figure out how to get a warranty on it...

Features — 8
The Tone Blaster Xtreme head has 2 solid-state channels switchable by hand or with the (separate, $50) 4 button foot Switch. It is 150w @ 4ohm, or 100w @ 8ohm and it regulates impedance all by itself (no switching necessary). The FX loop is front mounted, which may be an issue for some but I don't see it really mattering to me, and there is no headphone jack (Who expects one on a 150w head? ) The two channels are clean with switchable overdrive for a bit more dirt on the signal. The clean has the same EQ settings as the "Hot" channel: Gain, bass, mids (non-parametric), treble and reverb. The reverb is independent for each channel and foot switchable off/on. But NOT by hand. There is also an independent channel volume. The "Hot" channel comes loaded with gobs of gain. As above the Hot channel comes loaded with: Gain, bass, parametric-mids (so you can sweep what mid range you actually want), treble, reverb and, an independent channel volume. In lieu of overdrive, the Hot channel has an X-Mode feature that is hand/foot switchable. It increases treble and scoops the mids a bit. However I find this feature to be unappealing. It makes palm mutes have this vocal sound to them that isn't what I am looking for. For a solo, however, the X-mode really gets the extra treble from the amp. I personally pump this head @ 8ohms into an old Crate 4x12 cabinet. It has amazing low end, and if you remember that mid scooping is bad... then the sound is very thick and heavy.

6 comments sorted by best / new / date

    This amp is horrible. The distortion has so much dirt on it that it's almost impossible to actually hear what you're playing.
    Love this amp. If you are smart and know how to equalize everything properly, this amp really screams. I love the deep palm muting riffing and the high solo tones i can out of this. Great steal for the price.
    Darkkon wrote: This amp is horrible. The distortion has so much dirt on it that it's almost impossible to actually hear what you're playing.
    it may not be the amp thats horrible. i could be the cab u play it through.i play mine through a berhinger BG412 and i can have the distortion all the way up and still hear the notes clearly. u might want to adjust your pickup settings as well, the amp seems to favor the bridge pickup.
    do u need the footswtich with it cause i have the digitech rp250 peddel so do i still need to have the foot swtich and does it come with cables
    I say the best way to go with the ibanez TBX150H head, is to just go ahead and get the ibanez amp to go with it. It works amazingly for me. I play through mine with the dean DBD Tribute ML and a Washburn Dime v.