Valvestate VS265 review by Marshall

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.3 (48 votes)
Marshall: Valvestate VS265

Price paid: $ 650

Purchased from: Local store

Sound — 7
Clean - chimes, dry, dark, kinda solid state sounding but I love it. And it virtually doesn't distort unless you guitar overdrives an amp extremely well. Overdrive 1 & 2 - Overdrive 1 is more of a classic drive, while 2 is very modern and thick (think JCM900), I prefer od 1 since it is more transparent and raw. (Plus it sounds like tubes). I play alt metal and modern stuff with a mix of some contemporary styles and it fits, but a good ole' tube amp with a hao rust driver or Suhr Riot in front then I'll tweak it to my liking and create a very powerfull dark tone that ISNT metal-sounding and overly tight. No noise at all surprisingly until you hit about 7.5 on OD even with EMG's. It does fit my style to an extent, but I prefer a Plexi distortion and actually dislike JCM tones. My favorites are Pete Loeffler from Chevelle's and Daron Malakian from SOAD's tones. The amp is versatile yes, but it only makes 2 types of distortion, however, when you change pickups... Let the games begin. I get 5 completely different sounds from every 1 of my guitars since they are different woods, shapes, thicknesses, and only 1 has EMG's. So just keep in mind that if your Ibanez has passives, then your tone will be much different than your buds EMG loaded Schecter. In the end though, it will suit most peoples tastes.

Overall Impression — 9
I play alt metal and modern styles with a mix of contemporary, been playing for 4+ years and with many different effects in front of it. Good amp, good tones, good clean, its just a good all around amplifier, and I don't plan on selling it because its od1 channel is actually really cool. Btw, I have Marshall goldbacks in it.

Reliability & Durability — 8
It is very dependable, plus its solid state so there isn't much to worry about in terms of fragility to begin with. Not broken down once in its nearly 20 years but I have had it repaired and kept up with regular maintenance. And I Drive my amps quiet hard and play them harshly (but smartly of course) and not a single time has any of my equipment failed me, this is included in those ranks.

Features — 9
I'm not sure about most of the details on this amp but it was obviously made in the 90's, and its a stage sized combo. 3 channels (clean, OD1, & OD2), one pre amp tube and a solid state power amp, it has a wattage selector to decrease its wattage output but I can't remember by how much, a tone shift which is basically a bass cut(pun), 3-knob eq for clean and od (od 1 & 2 work off the same eq) its 100 watts or a little above 120 watts, it has a effects loop, headphones input etc., on-board chorus and reverb with a 2 knob eq for chorus and selector for which channels want the chorus to be on. Pretty damn versatile and it has a contour knob to adjust frequencies but it isn't very sensitive until you adjust it enough.

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