MG100HDFX review by Marshall

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.2 (290 votes)
Marshall: MG100HDFX
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Price paid: $ 349.99

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 9
I use my Epiphone SG G-400 with this amp, with the stock pickups. I also use a Boss OS-2 Overdrive/Distortion pedal with this amp to make my own blend of overdrive and distortion, but the overdrive channel is still pretty good. One thing I noticed is that when you turn the amp on, even with the Master Volume at 0, you hear the cooling fan in the background. It isn't that bad. While playing gigs it would be hard to notice it, and your playing would drown it out anyway. This amp's tone is good for anything you want, except blues maybe. I play and write different kinds of punk, and so does my band. Almost anything is good for punk, but this works great for it (with and without the pedal.) I also do some shredding for fun, and this amp works for that as well. It suits my style well. This amp can also be suiting for rock if you adjust your settings a little bit. As for metal, the tone will work well, but I suggest a pedal like a Boss Metal Core or a EHX Metal Muff for distortion. The built in one isn't that brutal, so if you want to go really brutal I would reccomend a pedal. This amp can go really loud. it's 100 Watts, and Solid State, but usually for solid states you want to go for more watts than you need cranked, and then you will be settled with that. I have yet to put it up really loud, so I don't know what the clean sounds like at high volumes. Overall, this amp sounds great, especially for a solid state. If you want a solid state for home and for gigs, this one works.

Overall Impression — 9
When I tried this amp out in Guitar Center for the first time, I fell in love with it. I didn't care what other people said, I loved how mine sounded and I stuck with my choice. The tone is the best you can get for a solid state. If you want a loud amp without losing all your money, this is what you want. I have 4 years experience of playing and use a good quality Epiphone SG G-400 with this amp. If somebody stole this, I would definately buy another one. I still can't afford a Marshall JVM, and this is the closest thing I can use without having to pay $2000. I love the tone, and I love the volume level. I am not a big fan of the channels, but they are pretty good. I use a pedals for my overdrive and effects anyway. I compared this amp to a Crate V-18, and I liked the MG better. I didn't like the tone of the V-18, and this one sounded the best to me. As crazy as it sounded, I liked the sound of this amp better than a V-18. It was all my preference, and I liked the MG. After playing around with the EQ and my pedals tone, Drive, and blend controls I got a great sound out of this amp. I just wish it didn't have that faint noise of the fan, then it would be perfect for me. Overall, this amp is a good loud amp you can get without breaking the budget. I would reccomend it to anybody Who plays rock, punk, or metal and wants a loud amp.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't had to worry about this amp breaking down at all. It is a solid state, which are more durable than tube amps, so that's an extra bonus you get from buying this amp. I have to carry the cab down 15 stairs every time I need to take it out of my room, and back up. I never got a scratch on it, even after moving the cab around a lot. As for the head, you don't really have to worry about this breaking. It has a handle you can carry it by and there is not much on it that is breakable. You can use this thing for a whole gig, you don't have to worry about it breaking at all. It is really loud, so you don't have to worry about it blowing out at any kind of gig volume. You can totally rely on this amp, don't worry about it breaking.

Features — 7
This amp is solid state. The amp head is 100 Watts, and the cab is 120 Watts. I bought the half stack package, so it was less money than if you bought the head and cab seperate. Lets start with the channels. There are 2 main channels. Clean/Crunch, and OD-1/OD-2. The Crunch channel sounds the best for metal, and the OD-1 is good for rock, punk, and other genres. The OD-2 gives it an extra kick for more distoriton. The only thing this doesn't really cover is blues, which other amps would be better for. I would reccomend using pedals with this amp though. The channels aren't the best, but with pedals this amp sounds great. It all depends on what you like. This amp also has a few built in effects, which are Chorus, Delay, Flanger, and a Chorus/Delay combo. There is a Reverb with controllable volumes. The effects are pretty good, but I just wish they were more adjustable. If you don't want to use the effects on it, there are always pedals you can use. I don't use the effects or channels, I have a pedal to cover overdrive/distortion and other pedals for my modulation and delay/reverb. I use this amp in my bedroom and when I am playing with my band. When playing in my room, I keep it at 2 or lower. 3 or higher is good for playing with the band. Trust me, it is loud enough for playing with your band. Overall, the features are okay. The effects are good and the channels are alright, but it depends on what you like. I would totally reccomend using pedals for this amp though.

18 comments sorted by best / new / date

    JustMeMark
    Ok so I don't play punk and heavy metal where a guy who can't play needs to hide behind all of this distortion crap. I've played this amp consistently for a year now and never once had I come up with a complaint about it. I play country/country rock primarily and my American Std. Tele sounds EXCELLENT through it. I've played venues of 50 to 1200 people. When you go to big venues, that's why you mic your amp guys! Also, for those who think valve amps are the be all, end all. Hmmm....think about all of your "CD's" and your amplifiers in your cars. Everything is digital, even your recordings. Marshall did a fantastic job of creating a digital copy of any valve amp! That, along with the lighter weight of a digital amplifier and it's high reliability and ruggedness, you can't go wrong if your a working musician. When I see all these comments about Zakk Wylde, what he plays and what that guy plays, it's all because they have very lucrative contracts with gear manufacturers. They don't have to pay a dime. That in turn creates the demand cycle for these types of products and OILA, the price goes up! Sure when I first brought my Marshall to my first gig, it was like dude, that's a cheap ass's amplifier, get a real one, until I proceeded to blow them away on my Tele. It plays razor thin on the clean channel, just the way a Tele should sound. On the distortion side, if you are a real player, you're not gonna need but a slight amount of distortion and this stays true throughout any volume. The only drawback was getting used to the effects knobs...no problem anymore with that. Basic stuff here guys.
    bigman07
    this amp has the worst distortion ever but with a great pedal it sound pretty go to me but i play on kranks sooo hahah
    sikguitarist07
    damn after reading these reviews i think i made a mistake on putting this amp on layaway at guitarcenter =[ it seemed good when i played it at the store. maybe ill sell it and buy a vox combo. =D
    mileo@ug
    I dont have a lot of cash and i want to my music seriously as a guitarist... So please be helpful
    mileo@ug
    My name is Michael, I live in Philadelphia, and have a love for Punk; Blues; and Classic Rock... I recently decided to but three particular items: The Boss ME-70, The Marshall MG100HDFX and Cab, and the Epiphone Lucille copy... if someone could tell me how they feel about these three items in particular it sould really help me and my pockets... e-mail at mileo100890@aol.com or im me at mileo2wolf Thank you
    pete_190290
    i had my garage broken into the other day and had all my gear stolen. I'm now getting one of these off the insurance and really looking forward to it. Everyone on here that just says "it's f*ckin shit don't buy it but tubes' is a twat. fair does tubes do sound infinately better than solid state, but not all of us can afford itm or even afford to replace the tubes when they blow every five mins. If i had the money yeah i'd save up and get myself an old JCM900, but i don't, so i'm settling with this for now. Can't see the point in these dicks that just say 'it's ****in shit don't buy it' don't let it put you off, for the price i reckon it's pretty good.
    OXL
    Recently purchased this amp because it's cheap. The distortion, to my liking, sucks. A digitech metal master pedal fixed that problem, the overall soyund now is much better and there's a better balance between mid and high tones. It's not the best sounding amp in the world (that's impossible for such a price) but it's certainly okay. If someone would comment on it that it's a cheap amp and I had to buy a "real one" I would call him a gear snob and tell him to **** off ;
    OXL
    Gonna get it next month because I can't spend a lot of money on an amp. The band I'm playing is giging again (after a 5 year hiatus) and I need something to play on. In the past I always borrowed our bass player's Peavy tube amp. But since he's not in the band anymore and also the tubes need to be exchanged (otherwhise I could borrow it if I wanted) I need something cheap for gigs. Fortunately my girlfriend withholds me from spending all my money on equipment, if that wasn't the case, I probably would starve to death ; I never played live without a PA and most of the time the sound dude is wining about turning the volume down so I guess this one will do just fine in a live situation. If you play gigs mainly without PA, then it's about ****in time that you start looking for something more then playing in your friends garage/garden! PS: My band plays metal and my experience (yes, I have played plenty other amps over the past 20 years)is that SS amps do just fine for this kind of music.
    UneasyxKarma
    This is a pretty amazing amp ( now i was using a fender frontman 15G which blew hard core) its a little complicated but the tone that i get out of it is amazing. the only problem is the channel light wont go out but the channels will change, but that isnt a real big deal because the product that counts still works like a charm . Does any one else have a problem with the channel light?
    Megdidar
    Marshall MG100HDFX 599.99 for head and cab set, or Peavey Windsor 100watt all tube half stack 499.99 for head and cab. It's been said time and time again, there are better amps out there that are much cheaper. And really, you DON'T need a halfstack.
    duzit89
    my band just financed this amp.. with a Warranty you can't go wrong with it.. even if it does mess up at some point you get a new one anyway.. and i have to laugh about the kids on here reviewing it.. "Never gigged with it but uhh ..Yah its Cool" Lmao Sh!!!t..
    Bob_Sagget
    First why would you need a ss amp for gigs? (Tube) I mean this isn't rocket science. And whats the purpose of having a half stack in your bedroom. Thats like driving a mack truck around like a car, wtf is wrong with u ppl? I have a 2 Kustom 12watt tube amps and I can beat the MG series by a mile with both set on 5. I've acctually been able to drown out my drummers dbl bass set with them on 7. Heres the funny thing they're about $100 an amp and they're extremely solid.
    TMF128
    Don't listen to my review, my opinion changed. It is not worth buying.
    GunslingerG20
    I came here trying to find reviews on equipment by experienced musicians. For the most part, all I see is a bunch of high-school geeks who haven't been playing long enough to have any clue. And who is going to give legitimacy to a review by someone who can't even spell correctly??? This is a SS amp guys --- it's pointless to compare it with tube amps. Both types have there place in the grand scheme of things, and both have thier supporters and detractors. While I generally prefer a good tube amp for the sound I desire, for some applications a solid state amp is better, and they are definitely more reliable. You know, there IS a reason why no one uses tubes in any form of electronics anymore except amps (I can just see these little gamer types trying to play Halo on a tube computer!!!lol). tube amps are great, but you can pretty much do the same things with solid state equipment IF you know what you are doing. I've been playing for 36 years now and have played through literally hundreds of different types and brands of amps, and I'll take a good Randall ss amp over MOST tube amps (the major exception being the JCM800, which is the benchmark for rock n' roll amps)any time. I've also got to laugh at these guys that want to get a good JCM800 or 900 head, and then ruin the tone by using some silly effects pedals. What's the point? The ultimate electric guitar sound is simply taking a well seasoned LesPaul and plug it straight into a JCM (well, OK, I admit I may put a cry baby in line also) and crank it. Nothing on this planet can match that tone!!! For any other sound, solid state equipment is just fine, and is much more reliable. Just my $.02 worth!!!
    Carcinogenic
    sam1618 wrote: Thanks SULLYvin for being a voice of reason here. If you have money for a tubehead, and a better cab, get it, and don't come back here saying how it makes the mg sound like crap. If all you do is post about how amps (that you do not own) suck, then you need to find yourself a girl, mate. I played next to one of these boys for more than a year, the fullstack. It isn't bad, and it holds up very well unless you don't treat your equipment well. If you spend more than half a second on your tones, you'll find what you're looking for, as long as you're not in some industrial "find the wierdest sh** you can" band. Then you can fu** yourself. If your amp broke down within "like 3 hours after I got home" or "right after I cranked it to whatever," then chances are you're not smart enough to try out your stuff IN the store, for more than half an hour. TRY BEFORE YOU BUY! Retailers don't get the rad equipment guarantees we do, so they will do all they can to pawn off shoddy stuff on you (not all, but some will). I will say, the head is probably not as good of a piece of equipment as the cab. If you have some extra change, upgrade your head and keep the cab. It performs very well under other heads. I personally like it under the ValveKing, but its all your personal preference, and I'm sure under some heads it doesn't sound quite right. Don't put the head on a better Marshall cab though. I promise it isn't that great. PS none of you are Zack Wylde or Kerry King so why are you so worried about what they play?
    +1
    tonedeafidiot
    How can you like the sound of this amp? I played a chord on it in GC after EQing it and turned it off it was so horrid.
    KidsHussla
    StuC wrote: thunderinblack wrote: zakk wylde sometimes uses it No he doesn't, that would be daft. Why would he play an MG over his old JCM800's? Oh and just because marshall say he uses mg's doesn't mean he does.
    he does use MG's in a lot of instructional video's and on the tour bus. and YES, he did use this amp but i cant remember when, it was on the tour bus i think...