Price paid: $ 450
Purchased from: Used
Sound — 10
This amp is so good it even makes both of my Squier guitars sound incredible. I have a Strat with fairly hot humbuckers and a Tele with more mellow single coils, and they both sound awesome. I play in a punk band with a light touch of ska guitar, so I don't require a whole lot of versatility in an amp, I just need one good sound for pretty much everything I play. That said, I can see this amplifier being suitable for anything from blues to some metal. The clean channel is designed to go into a slight overdrive when pushed past five, but the clean channel is plenty loud enough on 4, so if you're looking for a loud, pure sound, you can get that too. Although it doesn't have any modelling capabilities or any effects other than reverb and distortion, it makes up for it by having some exceptionally versatile and quality-sounding distortions. Especially for the fact that it has a solid state power amp section, it is remarkably warm and tube-like.
Overall Impression — 10
This amp fits my style perfectly. I have played on lots of amps, and this one suits me perfectly, the best out of all the amps I've tried so far. I love the fact that there are no tubes to replace, but I still can get that beautiful warm tube overdrive sound and pure cleans, even from squire guitars. Honestly, the main reason I got this amp is because I wanted a Marshall for cheap, and this was the perfect opportunity. But I'm really glad I got it. I'm so happy with this amp that I would buy another even if this one weren't stolen or lost, especially if I could get the same deal on it.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I feel that this amp would be dependable enough to use without a back up. I got it used, and the guy I got it from reported that he had never had a single problem with it, it was simply too loud for his style of music. The Marshall emblem on the front is broken (it now says "marsh") and there are a few rips in the tolex from road wear, but other than that, it seems as though it could take a beating. It has a very thick-walled chassis, probably almost and inch and a half to 2 inches thick. The knobs are all still very smooth and the footswitch is solid.
Features — 10
I bought this head with a Marshall 412 cabinet for 450 dollars. Just wanted to clarify that. The head itself is worth 450, IMO, but I was fortunate enought to get it with the cabinet for that price. - 3 footswitchable channels (clean, vintage style overdrive, modern overdrive) - Valve preamp, solidstate poweramp - Headphone jack - Effects loop with mix control - Clean reverb control and overdrive reverb control - Tone shift selector for clean channel - 100 watts. The onboard distortion is plenty is better than most pedal distortions I have used. The amount of tonal flexibility is remarkable, and I think this is a major selling point for this amp.