Price paid: $ 300
Purchased from: Sam Ash
Sound — 8
Line 6 is not known for representing a sound (like Mesa is to metal distortion, or Fender is to clean, bluesy, twang). The amp models are all based on real amps like the Dual Rectifier, or the Fender Princton. The Spider is a solid-state amp, but a good one at that. It has a big enough bottom to blast a small gig, while having a glassy enough top, so your lead can pierce your audiences hearts (or brains, if you're using a metal or Insane. The amp has a typical 3-band EQ, so you can customize your sound how you like it. The distortion/gain is different for each amp. Put on medium gain on the twang setting, and you're ready for some country chick'n pick'n. If you lower the distortion on the crunch setting, it sounds like Eric Clapton's blues rock style. If you use high distortion and a scooped middle with an Insane amp model, you better be wearing a welder's mask, 'cause your face is about to be melted! However, since it's not a tube amp, the harmonics will sing through the mix, but it won't be as powerful (use a compressor to fix this problem). For the best sounds, use a passive humbucker. The clean will stay clean, and the metal will kill 'em all. Oh yes, and the reverb is amazing.
Overall Impression — 10
I don't have a style of music. I mostly play metal, but sometimes I just freestyle the blues. I like the fact that the clean is very customizable - there's Metallica clean, Pink Floyd clean, Doors Down clean. I have different distorted settings - 80's metal, grunge, Insane lead, thrash rythm, speed (with almost 100% mid scoop), and others. If you have a power metal band, get a Peavey or Mesa with a stack. If you play jazz, get a Fender Reverb. If you have a wide taste, or you play as a hobby, buy this amp. It's well worth the price.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I only used it for one gig so far, but I'd use it again. I set up four channels to my specifications, and switched between them with the ease of pushing a button (I now have a footswitch for that) so there's no worries about messing up your settings while on stage. I only had it for a few months, but I expect it to last for years. Just in case, I got the company warranty, which is around $30. The outside casing seems tough, and could probably handle a little roughousing (touring, gigging, getting drunk and smashing it with a sledgehammer - kidding), but honestly, Ihaven't tested that out yet.
Features — 10
This versatile machine has over 300 artist/song presets. That means your guitar can sound like Tim Pierce, John5, Meshuggah, Master of Puppets, Hotel California, or Atomic Punk. It has 12 amp models to choose from (2 of each - Clean, Twang, Blues, Crunch, Metal, or Insane). It has three effect dials (Chorus Flanger, Phaser, or Tremolo; Delay, Tape Echo, or Sweep Echo - all of these have a tap tempo; Reverb). The different delay effects are great, but I wish the flanger, phaser, and tremolo had a tap tempo also - all you have are the presets, which aren't bad, considering that it's built into the amp. My favorite part is that there are 9 banks of four channels each to save your settings to. You can start off with a preset, tweak it how like, then save it! There's a comparison mode, so you can see exactly what the preset settings are before you change it. There are different footpedals (sold seperately) that can Switch between the channels. There is a built in chromatic tuner, a noise canceler (awesome), and a gain boost which I find is only mediocre. If you want a good boost, just use an overdrive pedal.