Price paid: € 1000
Purchased from: Local Music Shop Linberg Munich
Sound — 10
I use Ibanez S470 with original pickups. The neck humbucker is just great. I also use Cort G260 with duncan pickups. I can play everything with it but I use it mosltly for blues, rock and hardrock. The clean channel is great not Marshall like. The gain channel is also very good frim overdrive to heavy riffing distirtion but I use stompboxes so I don't really need it. The clean channel gets crunchy from about 6 - 10. If you turn the Master volume all the way, it starts too crunch at about 8. Its not very noisy and you can experiment with tubes for taste.
Overall Impression — 10
Like I said I play all kinds of blues and rock songs from Hendrix to Nirvana and this guy likes it all. Been playing for 24 years now. I also own a modified Peavey Valve King 112, Zoom G5, lot of Boss and Ibanez stomboxes etc. And also a lot of studio gear for semiprofessional recording. If it were stolen I would miss it becaise its probably very hard to find due to it being in production for only a year and a half. It has its own charachter and its the cleanest sounding Marshall ever, so it would probably hard search to find something similar. I love everything about it... I compared it to JCM800, Fender Deluxe, Peavey Valveking and a Vox Hybrid. I like the valveking and Fender Deluxe and they all have their individual strengths. If I I could I'd probably own all three. Still I'd say that the JTM is the most versatile.
Reliability & Durability — 7
This part is problematic eventhough after owning it for 16 years now I never needed to fix it. Because they do get HOT and the tubes are really close to a chassis where the electronics are a small computer fan or two like I did is a must. That's why I probably never had problems with it and it stays nice and cold. So yes I can depend on it... I did change the tubes to get an optimal sound for myself. The original tubes were still working after 16 years though... Obe thing I noticed is thay on clean channell on the bass knob you hear almost no differnce between 5 to 10. For mecits enough and because I use stompboxes the sound has more bottom anyway.
Features — 10
Got it new sometime in 1997. Mine is a combo with 3x10" eminence Heritage speakers. I play with it everything from blues to metal. It has two channels (clean and boost/gain), both with its own Eq's, volume and reverb knobs each. There's also a Master knob for Overall volume. It has a channelswitch but also a footswitch that came with it. There is a presence knob in the back and a plug for external cab or PA connection. Serial and Parallel Fx loop both. It has everything I need and more. For example I never use a serial Fx and I still didn't need a cab for it. It has 60 watt power with 2x El34 power tubes and 4x 12ax preamp tubes. Enough for rehearsals and up to medium gigs.