Price paid: $ 100
Purchased from: JB Music
Sound — 5
Well, what can you expect from an amp of this caliber. Right? None. But like I said, I made peace with evolet and I would not trade her for another. I would get another amp but I will pay this one until I can't fix it. That's the good thing about EVOLET, I can open it up and mess with the circuitry without the guilt. Adding mods inside the amp like changing the clipping diodes or removing them will give more options. I found a way to make it sound fit for what I want it for. But then again, the sound quality is nothing to be marshally proud of. Some mods I have on it: a 1x8 30watt hi-fi speaker, added 2 more clipping diodes on the OD channel, tried using 1megaohm pots for the contour and a 5k pot for the bass, will find a way to make an outboard Switch for the FDD, and will find a way to put a noise gate circuit between the preamp and poweramp stages.
Overall Impression — 7
Overall: Don't buy this amp for the sound it came with from the factory, but buy this amp for the worth of having it, a descent unit for personal use. The greatest thing (for me only maybe) is that I can torture this amp to it's limits without the guilt and still it will surrender to all my will. I will get the 100watt MG head and get a good celestion-equipped cab maybe a cab with 4x10... or I will just make my own. I don't like tube amps! It's just not my thing.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Name it: dropped from 5 feet, kicked by drunk (it was me), almost set on fire, screwed by tons of screws (the real screws), soldered, short circuited, dumped super glue on the circuit board, flooded half way up then I dried it under the sun and used compressed air set to 70psi to blow it dry... I was even so stupid I tried slashing a 15inch bladed weapon thru it's backside... and still the amp served me right.
Features — 5
I had this amp since 2006 and I still haven't bought another one. Not that it's that good, but beause I have made peace with this amp and even named it EVOLET. For an amp under 100 dollars, this ain't a great buy, but like I said, I found a way to keep it. There are so many bad things about this amp, many! The clean channel has good headroom, but I wish it was true that it goes into crunch mode pass 6 o'clock. What you get is a solid state clipping sound. The Overdrive channel, well it has potential but that's all. Beyond 6 o'clock, feedbac and hum will take over your sound you would have no choice but to play metal. Works fine for me though. The tone controls are effective. But the bass can be overwhelming sometimes for a little bastard like this one. So I opened up the amp and tinkered with the electronics and found out that changing the bass pot will actually tighten up the low end. The factory pot is 20k, using a lower pot value will decrease the low end sweep but will give you a tight sound. The mids and high are fitted with 5k pots. I did not change the highs, it's enough for me. The mids/contour control is very good, increase the pot value and the you'll get a wide sweep, giving more character and depth. But when I got my Zoom G2.1u I reverted back and installed the original pots. The great thing about the amp is the FDD. The bad thing about FDD is noise. The good thing about noise is that you can suppress it. Don't underestimate the CD IN. It accepts stereo inputs and can even be a LINE OUT for connecting to another audio system. I use the right output of the Zoom G2.1u (it has stereo output) to connect CD IN thus the amp works just like a simple power amp and cab. Then I connect the other output to the guitar in and abracadabra, a blend of two different sounds at my disposal. When you use the CD IN as LINE OUT, the amp becomes a "pre-amp" that you can connect to another amp with higher power or to a mixing console or to your computer's LINE IN. Believe me, all these worked! The bad things? No footswitch. The lows tend to be overwhelming. The FDD Switch should be footswitchable and needs a noise gate. The sound is well, solid but dry. The power is overbearing for a room but weak for a semi-closed garage.