Price paid: $ 359.99
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Sound — 10
Using with EMG 81/85. It isn't really noisy at all. Clean is only distorted if you have the gain up, then it can break up on the peak of a note. I like the distortion. It suits me perfectly. I don't want a distortion that is muffled and yucky. However this amp can produce both that and a more usable distortion.
Overall Impression — 10
I've been playing for 3 years or so. This head is superior to combos I've had in the past (Line 6, Marshall). If it were stolen I would most likely buy this again unless I had more money at my disposal at the time, in which case I would probably buy a mesa/boogie Mark V. The price is great for this one.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I would depend on it without backup, but for some reason I find myself concerned that the push button power will break at some point. That's most likely the same reason I don't trust push button start on a car.
Features — 10
I play progressive metal, so I need a pretty wide range of sounds. This amp covers them very well. The amp has 4 channels: Clean, Crunch, Overdrive 1 and Overdrive 2. I tend to use clean and Overdrive 1 most of the time. OD1 has a nice full sound to it unlike many overdrives. It provides plenty of gain for those metal riffs I need. Clean channel with some reverb and delay makes for a nice soft tone. The crunch channel sounds nice too, however I haven't found use for it yet. The OD2 channel is too trashy for me. Sounds way too muffled and unclear for my taste (Though I'm sure it would be the preferred setting for some of those hardcore players or something). The footswitch is helpful beyond belief. Find the settings you want and store them to a button and you're ready to go. Quick switching between parts. As many may know prog metal can go from a really hard riff to a clean part within seconds. It has an effects loop which I have tried and it works well, however since buying this amp I haven't found that I use any of my pedals anymore. I find that they all dirty up the tone in a way that I don't like (With the exception of my multi effects unit). There is a 1/8" headphone jack, 2 speaker jacks, MP3 line in. The built in effects seem to work pretty well, however they are too simplified. I prefer to control the timing of the flanger and delays etc more precisely than with a knob. I use this amp for both practices and live. The power is irrelevant because I just mic the cab into the PA.