Spider Valve 212 review by Line 6

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.8 (89 votes)
Line 6: Spider Valve 212
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Price paid: $ 550

Purchased from: Craigslist

Sound — 10
I'm running this amp with a stock Gibson Explorer. (for reference there) I play everything from blues to metal, and this amp gets every tone I could want and gets it well. I'm going to run through each of the 12 amp models for you- Clean Amber- This is a very crisp sounding clean tone, lots of bottom end at your disposal----- Clean Blue- Emulates a 1973 Hiwatt Custom 100. Lots of headroom, and tight low end for thick creamy tones----- Twang Amber- Emulates the Blackface '65 Twin Reverb and Blackface '64 Deluxe Reverb. It has more snap and bite great for country or rock----- Twang Blue- Emulates a '53 Fender tweed Deluxe Reverb, '58 Fender tweed Bassman and a '60 Gibson Explorer. Excellent rock-a-billy tone. Snappy and tight----- Blues Amber- A mix of a '65 Marshall JTM-45, a '58 Fender Bassman, a '63 Fender Vibroverb and a Supro. Tight, crisp, crunchy tones with lots of attack----- Blues Blue- Emulates a Vox AC-30. Excellent Beatles tones here! ----- Crunch Amber- Emulates a Marshall Plexi 50 watt. Screaming solo tones, and super tight and crunchy rhythm tones, my choice for ACDC sounds----- Crunch Blue- Based on a modded Marshall Plexi 100 watt. Just like Eddie Van Halen. It copies the Van Halen brown sound of the first VH album perfectly Metal Amber- Based on a Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier. Very tight low end, more gain that you could ever need, tight attack, and sharp high end. Amazing tone.----- Metal Blue- This model has a mid control that contours the distortion characteristics. The lower the mids, the more Class A sounding the gain is. The higher the mids, the woolier he bottom end, and the highs disappear, simulating a fuzz pedal like a Big Muff----- Insane Amber- Mesa Boogie dialed in for shredding. More girthy mids, I found this to be my favorite rhythm tone. It has tones of gain, I don't even turn the gain up, I keep it all the way down, and it's still a lot. Amazingly tight tone with perfect definition----- Insane Blue- Tight Marshall tone with tight low end. The gain knob dimed is lethal.----- As you can tell, this amp does everything. I've played a lot of the amps modeled, and the tone stacks Line 6 designed are DEAD ON. Perfect emulations. The only thing is you have to turn this amp up. Thats when it opens up and blossoms. This amp begs to be cranked, so feed its desire. Your neighbors will hate you, but it'll sound orgasmic

Overall Impression — 10
This amp is perfect for any guitarist, no matter what style. I have no regrets in getting this amp, this amp will be my main rig for life. I love the tone and flexibility. Line 6 teamed up with Bogner! The man who modded Eddie Van Halen's amps. This guy obviously knows a thing or two about tubes! The only thing I'm going to do to change this amp is install some Weber Beam Blockers to stop the speaker beaminess. Overall amazing amp, especially considering the price. Get it.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't had a single problem yet and I bought this thing used. The tolex covering is very well placed, no mess or sloppiness in construction. The inside of the cab is clean, no residue or mess from the factory. I would take a back up of some sort if I was micing the amp. If I was using the direct out to feed a mixer, I'd probably feel safer. (not this amp, I would do that with ANY tube amp).. I don't expect to see any problems with this amp. Perfect construction.

Features — 10
Some of the many features of this amp are: built in tuner, built in noise gate, built in overdrive, built in smart FX, direct out, fx loop, power amp input for POD devices, and cab outputs to turn your combo into a head! This amp has 12 amp models, modeling classic amps from Fender, Marshall, Mesa Boogie, and some of Line 6's own creations. There are 400+ presets already dialed in, including an arsenal of presets designed by famous bands and guitarists including; Albert Lee, Maroon 5, 11, Dashboard Confessional, John 5, Killswitch Engage, Lacuna Coil, and Slipknot. (just to name a few) There are also 36 user presets for you to dial in your own sounds. This amp can get any tone you want out of it. 40 watts is more than enough power, considering this is the most powerful sounding combo I have ever heard, and it has a cab output, so you could connect it to a cab if you want. And this amp IS a tube amp, and sounds like one.

6 comments sorted by best / new / date

    kevin90000
    wtf this model is only 499.99 on zzounds.com but its like 829.99 on musicians friend and everywhere else. if its not a mistake than you people should get one cause i bought mine for 1000.00 and its awsome. and now its half price
    scottishme
    ok people needing some help here looking for a new amp ok lets get the digs in first and yes i do own a spider 3 150 which is good not the best but for the price and the range of styles i play it was right for me and i also own a old school marshall vs 100 basicallyt the spider i use in a metal band and the marshall in a blues and rock band i have always been a soild state person cause i like the sound for the metal etc but now looking for a amp or stack for around 1000 pounds that sounds good for both instead of having 2 amps so any ideas out there on which ones i should look at ????? playing a deam ml fbd with bill lawrence pup and p59 in neck obviously metal guitar and a epi les paul with pearly gate in neck and screamin demon in bridge any help will be great .....
    crunch37
    I have had the 212 spider valve for about 2 years. It is a very flexible amp. I have owned marshalls and fenders, rocktron prophesy all kinds of effects and amps. I get a killer blues tone out of this amp. You have to just f' with the knobs and see what you get. I have american lone star strat and heritage h150 and both sound killer. I can dial in about any tone, but it took some fiddling with it. It does roar when cranked and moving your guitar volume effects the tone drastically. I use 3 pedals in front, cactus crunch, maxon 808 and ibanez ts808, 3 effects to the loop, compressor, chorus and delay. I did also and probably most importantly run it into two marshall 4x12s. I did replace the tubes with groove tubes, got some rubys going in next. It does absolutely act like a tube amp, because it is. Sounds better louder and when you turn down your guitar volume the tone cleans up even when pretty heavily distorted. It is not perfect amp, effects are pretty crappy, the volume jump between channels is deafening, the original tubes are crap, reverb is pretty ok. The tones are very nice, I can dial in VH, Metallica, SRV (amber insane channel with drive at zero with mild distortion pedal - just and example of the weird settings the make cool tones), Gary Moore, GNR, Tesla, Journey, EC, Hendrix whatever. Just turn on the cd and start f'ing with the amp until it sounds the same. Got to have good guitars and pick ups. My wife who doesn't know crap about the "physics" of guitar or tone, she said it was the most "musical amp" I have ever had. I have owned tons of tube amps, mostly fender and marshall, and this hangs with them just fine. But the tone is in your hands, my friends don't sound the same on my rig and I don't sound that great on theirs. Get out and try amps, all different kinds, don't hate on a brand you don't like, waste of time, tone is in your hands and your need to find the amp that lets your tone come through. Tone is a beautiful spiritual gift and when you find it you will know and it doesn't matter what the label is on the amp. I know people who have had the expensive bogners and prefer the alchemist and give the spider valve much respect. Its all in how it sounds in your hands.
    metal jello
    I own this amp and I must say, i'm very impressed. Here's two things u can get that GREATLY improve the tone and feel of this amp. #1- A 412 cab. I run an Avatar ab with Celestion G12t75s and V30s and my tone has improved tenfold. #2- Strymon SV Pre. Puts a tube before your modelling preamp to get more pick response and natural tube overdrive. Makes this amp roar. Great amp for the working musician, great reviews.