Purchased from: Local music shop
Sound — 9
I mainly play a Jackson JS30 RR with the stock pickups and it produces a great tone with the Spider 2. I recently had a go with a friend's Fender 15R and the Spider blows it out of the water for tone and sound quality. The Fender is tinny and sounds like the speaker on a phone; the Spider gives a warm full bodied sound. The clean channel is just that, and you have to really batter out power chords at full volume to get anything other than a clean tone, and if you're into battering out power chords, chances are you wont be using the clean channel very often. The crunch channel gives a warm, tube like overdrive, and sounds great for playing classic rock stuff like Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. The metal channel is the worst of the four, as it is slightly tinny and thin on tone. It is also somewhat unneccessary, as crunch covers all the classic rock sounds, and anyone serious about playing metal will use the insane channel. The insane channel gives great high-gain distortion, and with use of the "drive" control can give anything ranging from 80s metal to heavily distorted death metal sounds. I mainly play early metallica and megadeth type material, and it sounds great on the insane channel. I would actually say it gives a better distorted tone than my Boss ML2, and if it came with a footswitch I would have no need for it.
Overall Impression — 10
I play in a thrash metal band, and we really only do small gigs, and it is more than capable of coping with such situations. I've been playing 4 years, although I'm young and have no income, so this is my amp for the forseeable future, and that's fine with me, because it does everything I ask of it. If it were to be stolen the odds of me hunting down the person and killing them (which seems to be the standard answer for these) is fairly slim, as I am 5' 4 and 7 stone, and they could clobber me with the stolen amplifier anyway. Unfortunately this model is no longer in production, so I would probably save up and go for something a bit bigger, but if anyone's in the market for an amp of this size and they see one of these for sale, I encourage them to buy it. I don't know anyone else who has a Spider 2, but it blows all my friends' Fenders and Roland Cubes away in terms of sheer sound quality. I would honestly say it is the best sounding solid state amp I have ever heard, especially in Insane mode. The only misgiving is the lac of a footswitch, but neither the Fender or the Roland have a footswitch either, and the Marshall MG15 is about 50 pounds more expensive. Also, in Dave Mustaine's interview on youtube where he speaks about his new Dean signature series, the practice amp sitting beside the sofa is a Line 6 Spider 2. Just thought you might like to know:p
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have had my amp for over 3 years and so far I haven't had any problems. I'm not overly careful with it so it's got lots of small scratches, although it's never been in a big accident. It's a solid state amp, so in theory you should be able to give it quite a beating without anything more than superficial damage.
Features — 8
I bought my amp in 2006, when it was coming to the end of its production run, and was replaced with the spider 3, which in many ways is almost identical to its predecessor, however I prefer the tone of the Spider 2. The Spider 3 is a little bass heavy for my liking. There are 4 channels: clean, crunch, metal and insane. This is the only Spider series amp not to be footswitch compatible, which is ok for practicing at home but when I'm playing with my band it does become an issue. The solution to the problem is 85 pounds spent on a Boss ML-2 Metal Core :p The amp has built in reverb and chorus/flanger controls. The reverb gives a great sound when trying to get an Acoustic feel playing clean. The chorus is good too, although the times you will really need to use it are limited. Again a footswitch would be nice.