Sound — 9
I use this amp with my Washburn WI14 guitar. It just has the basic stock pickups in it, but still, when I play it through this amp it makes it sound tremendously better. Before it really sounded like a "beginner" guitar through my 15w practice amp, but now it actually sounds good. Like I mentioned above, I play a lot of alternative and punk stuff. It sounds great for both, along with any other style I play. From what I've noticed, it's not too noisy. I don't know what people are talking about when they mention the fan being too loud. I can't hear then fan at all. The only time I've noticed anything is when distortion is set to 10. Then there is a buzz. Not a big deal though. The clean channel is really nice. You can get a lot of tones from it-anywhere from warm and full to a sharp country twang. The distortion is great. I had to buy a distortion pedal with my old amp to get it to sound decent, but this one doesn't even need it. You can have sharp, biting distortion, to blasting metal. The contour knob adds a lot of tone variation as well. This amp is also LOUD. I keep the volume at 1 for indoor practice. The highest I've had it up is 5, and my ears were ringing for about an hour afterward. The clean channel stays clean as well. I've had it up just as high and it has stayed crystal clear.
Overall Impression — 9
This amp can take anything I throw at it. I can get the tones I want and not have to constantly be messing with the dials. I compared it to other amps in the price range that I could find. A Crate 60w and a Vox Valvetronix 100w. The Crate sounded very muddy to me and in general just didn't impress me at all. The Vox was good, but it seemed like it did a lot of things decently, but none particularly well. It also seemed very cheap (dials had already broken off at the store I tried it at). I tried this amp expecting it to be garbage like so many people say. I was pleasantly surprised and ended up buying it. If it were stolen I wouldn't hesitate to buy another. It's a great amp for practicing at home or band practice, and even small gigs. It fits my needs perfectly as it is, and I would recommend that people look into them and try them out.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I wouldn't have a problem playing a small gig with this amp. It is plenty loud enough and hasn't had a single problem yet. It seems well built. I haven't really had it long enough to know how it holds up over time, but it does have a 3 year service warranty and 5 year parts warranty, so if something does go wrong, it can be fixed.
Features — 9
This amp has a 12" speaker, two channels (clean and overdrive), five effects options (Chorus/Delay, Delay, Chorus, Flange, Reverb), FDD (Frequency Dependent Dampening), CD ins, emulated line out, and emulated headphone jacks. It also has a footswitch to change channels and turn on effects. I play a lot of different genres. Mainly alternative and punk, but I also play blues, Indie, and even metal now and then. So far, I've been able to get any sound I want from this amp. I haven't found a genre it doesn't do well with. The effects are great-I use the delay and chorus/delay all the time. The chorus effect could be a bit better, but it's good enough to use. I don't use the flange a whole lot, as it doesn't suit my style of playing, but when I have used it it sounds good. The reverb is good as well-it adds a nice effect when added to regular playing. I always keep it set on 2-3 for normal playing, and 5-8 if I want to add a really noticeable echo.