Price paid: $ 315
Purchased from: Local Music Store
Sound — 10
As I've said in my other posts, I've become largely a single coil Fender player, but for many years, I ran guitars with humbuckers through this amp and it has never been anything short of incredible! I play across a wide range of genres and it hits them all head on. It uses the same reverb tank as many of the old Fenders... As a matter of fact, my Classic 50 and '78 Super Reverb tanks were interchangeable. When my SR tank broke down, the Peavey tank got subbed in and performed without a hitch. As far as the tube break up, you'd REALLY have to crank this thing to get it to break up due to its hefty 50 watts. That said, it can be done but I tend to prefer the cleaner sound myself.
Overall Impression — 10
This is a great match for any musician (maybe barring metal). I have played for roughly 20 years and this amp has become part of who I am as a musician. If something were to ever happen to my particular amp, I'd be devastated and would absolutely replace it immediately! I don't know what, if anything, has changed in the design of these amps over the years so I would replace it with another early '90s one for sure! The only negative which is completely unavoidable for this type of amp is the weight... 63 lbs. But it's worth lugging around for what you get in return!
Reliability & Durability — 10
So like I said, I've gigged and done studio sessions extensively with this amp. I've replaced the tubes once out of preference (which needed no biasing since this is a pre-biased amp) and replaced the 3 prong plug when the ground came out. That is literally the extent of it. I also neglected this amp for many years and traveled without a road case so it was exposed to pretty brutal environments... It didn't seem to mind. If you're considering a HOT Rod Deville, consider this. I played in a band along side our other guitar player who played a 410 Deville. They're great amps although I prefer the HOT Rod Deluxe. However in the years that we played together, he's had to replace tubes multiple times which included having them biased by an amp tech on each occasion ($$). He has screws that randomly work their way loose, has had to replace a circuit board due to an oversight in design, and has battled overheating issues. My amp on the other hand? Works every time without a stumble!
Features — 9
Back in 1995 I saved up my money and bought a Peavey Classic 50 used at my local music store for (a now laughable) $315... I was 12 years old. I'm now one month shy of 30. I've played literally hundreds, if not thousands of gigs from small acoustic style private parties to outdoor amphitheater shows. This amp has been with me every step of the way. For a time, I played through a '78 Super Reverb and every time that amp failed me (which was often), my Classic 50 was there to pick up the slack. It is a two channel amp with reverb which makes it unbelievably versatile. I've become a stompbox guy and this one takes them better than most any other I've played through. It also has an effects loop which is a great added feature for pedal usage. The only negative in terms of features that I would give it (and other similar amps made by other companies) is the "Presence" control... I just fail to see the benefit and typically I run it all the way or almost all the way down.