Price paid: £ 229
Purchased from: local music store
Sound — 10
It's marketed as an acoustic amp, and I use my Yamaha APX-5 through it, and have not had to use the anti-feedback feature. The sounds I get are controllable, accurate, and with very little noise at any volume level. I also run my Yamaha SG1500 electric through it, and it works very well for that too in a band that plays covers, where I use a DigiTech mfx unit, with some chorus/flange/reverb and very little distortion. I have overdriven it a little to test it and suspect a highly overdriven/distorted sound would not be the best application for it. My Shure SM58 mic also works great with the amp.
Overall Impression — 9
I play solo acoustic, in a small acoustic group, and also in an electric group. This is amp is a first for me in that it's equally useful at home, in the rehearsal studio and small/medium gigs. I've been playing for around 30 years now, and have owned around 10 amps. I've never had a bad one, but this one is streets ahead of all the others for a combination of sound, build + component quality, ergonomics, price, style, portability. Yes would replace if lost/stolen. I wish the mains socket were recessed and the cable could be stowed somewhere.
Reliability & Durability — 9
The only issue I have is the control knobs feel far less sturdy than on my Line 6 Spider II for instance. The Marshall's casing 'shrouds' and protects the controls, but still, I think the knobs are not the best. I always smile when I read about backup... I have none as such, so yes I depend upon it totally. I've only owned it a few months and although it's still little used, it did fly off the back seat of my car the other week when I had to brake quickly, and incurred zero damage. I still think Marshall could make better knobs though! Hence the mark down to 9 on this!
Features — 10
This is the first Marshall I have bought new, following recommendation and use of a friend's. The features are amazing. It will take a guitar and mic in purpose built individual inputs, phantom-powered XLR mic input for condenser mics, AND stereo phono inputs for running any in-line electronic devices such as drum machine, backing tracks etc etc. Speakers are 2 x 8 inch with 'chromed' tweeters, so the sound is very clear but with plenty of oomph too. The chorus & digital reverb can be assigned by channel, so you may have reverb on the guitar and not on the mic or vice versa etc. It is so versatile, and the feature list combined with the portability made my mind up to buy. It's also very light to carry, which is another real plus! Additionally, the look is great, a distinctive brown/brass scheme which reeks quality. The rear is completely covered and closed in which although it robs me a space to store footswitch, mains lead, trailing socket etc., it's probably far better long-term to protect the thing!