Thunder 30 review by Orange

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  • Features: 8
  • Sound: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.8 (26 votes)
Orange: Thunder 30
1

Price paid: € 799

Features — 8
The biggest feature on this amp is that it doesn't have any features. It forces you to go full old school rock 'n' roll. Thousands of mid, high, low, EQ, whatever knobs? Nope. Very solid. The gain channel has a volume, gain and the "shape" knob, the clean channel has volume, treble and bass. That's it. And I can say it's enough! Of course the overall build of this amp doesn't scream "I'm versatile!" but the sound-section will explain why the features on this amp are cool enough. One really cool feature is the wattage. You can choose between 30, 15 and 7 watt via the tube- and the output switch (4 output tubes, 2 output tubes). Also it has the standard things, like an FX loop input, pedal input and all that back-of-the-amp-input-stuff you need.

Sound — 9
I play in a melodic death metal band and my overall sound needs to be very huge and thick, as I'm the only guitarist in my band. The "shape" know gives you an insane amount of range. One little touch and you have a whole different amp standing before you. I keep the know around 10 or 1 o clock, which gives you a very heavy, but still not too trebly mid and treble balance. It suits my style perfectly and I really love the sound, it's the typical fat, dirty Orange sound. If you go on lower gain settings it's also really great for some dirty blues-rock, hard rock. ZZ Top is a whole lot of fun with this amp. I can play everything I want, from Immortal to AC/DC and there is no moment where I'd say the sound is bad. But I would say it's an amp for people who have more of a heavy picking because if you pick lightly, it may sound a little muddy to you - depending on your gain settings. Be strong, or be nothing.

The clean channel is nice too, although it doesn't have as much opportunities as the gain channel with the "shape" knob. It may take a while to find a nice clean sound. If you go really all the way up in the clean channel, the tubes break up greatly and you get a wonderful old school rock 'n' roll sound. Cool for some Stones.

I played this amp with a modded Gibson SG (DiMarzio super distortion in the bridge), a modded Epiphone SG (Häussel pickups, heavy midrange) and a 2014 Jackson Dinky Pro (Duncans) and I have to say my Epiphone with its more mid oriented pickups gave me the overall best sound on this amp. A guitar with more mid boosted pickups and a clear and not too punchy sound goes great with the TH30.

Reliability & Durability — 7
It's pretty heavy and overall of solid build. I have to throw it around like a maniac yet, but I think this amp can andle this. It does get kind of hot, hotter than most tube amps played so far and it does have a little standard-hum but it's great for live playing. I'm still quite careful with the amp, as I am always careful with equipment. So it's good to me - but if you toss your amp around like your salad, I won't guarantee for anything! I've had it for a year now and it has yet to let me down. So far, I'm quite sure I will enjoy this amp for a years to come

Overall Impression — 8
I think it's always hard to rate orange amps, because at the end of the day, every orange amp has that typical orange sound. You hear it and you know it's orange, no matter what the settings are. If you don't like the orange sound - stay away from this amp. If you're into that sound, I'd definitely recommend this.

I really love the full, thick and yet very accentuated sound. The "shape" but is a cooler feature than most people would think and if you want an amp that you just plug in and you're ready to rock - here you go! It could probably use a little bit more in the midrange, although it already has a nice quite of mids - but well, that's why I have my modded guitars. I compared it to the Laney Blackheart and the Blackstar HT100 and this amp just suited all my needs, I felt that, while the other amps obviously had more features, the TH30 still was pretty much just as loud as those (I can use this at gigs and band practice without any problems) and it had that growling sound I wanted.

If someone stole this amp, I'd teabag that dude until he pukes his own testicles out, so I can teabag him with his balls while I teabag him with my balls. Yes, I'd buy a new one.

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