Studio Pro 110 review by Peavey

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.7 (7 votes)
Peavey: Studio Pro 110

Price paid: $ 60

Purchased from: Pawn Shop

Sound — 9
The clean channel on this amplifier is really good. I am using a First Act Volkswagen Garage Master guitar. I put a P90 in the neck position and kept the stock humbucker in the bridge. With the P90, I can get some really mellow, relaxed sounds from the clean channel. When I select the bridge pickup, I get a clean sound that could probably cut through concrete. The distortion channel is also useful. The distortion is best at a classic rock setting. You can crank the Drive to metal settings, but the distortion gets a little hairy when you do. I would say it's best to keep the amp distortion at classic rock settings and then use a pedal to get higher distortion levels, if you want such. My guitar has a built in preamp that acts like a distortion pedal. I never used to use it, because the distortion is not very enjoyable. However, when used in connection with this amp, I have found settings in my guitar's preamp that sound really good. The distortion is smooth, creamy, but not loose. It stays even and straight, like new pavement. I don't know how this works. I don't know why it works. I just know that I like it. I play mostly blues and rock. This amplifier seems like it was made for my style of music. It does have a grounding hum. I blame that on the house I live in, though. It's and old house and every amplifier I have owned has a hum when plugged into an outlet in this house.

Overall Impression — 8
I live in Portland, Oregon. People who play Peavey amps will never be taken seriously in this musical environment. Fortunately, I am not trying to be taken seriously. I really like Peavey amps from the years where they were made in America. Peavey made some of the best sounding solid state amps during those years. The Peavey Studio Pro 110 is, I feel, one of them. I think that the Studio Pro 112 might have an edge over it because of the speaker size. I haven't tried the 112, though. For an amp of this size, which is extremely portable, you can't do better. The volume is good. The distortion is decent, the reverb is springy (the Peavey Bandit DOES have better reverb, however) and real. The cleans are pretty and even sparkle some. They are not, however, up to Fender's level of clean. This is the best description I can give of this amplifier: It gives you distortion that is almost, but not quite, Marshall and it gives cleans that are almost, but not quite, Fender. Spend the money to buy a Marshall and a Fender, or buy one of these little guys for between 60 and 100 dollars. It's hard to put a numerical rating on that idea. The amplifier itself rates a 7 or 8. Factor in the price, though, and it's a 10.

Reliability & Durability — 10
This is a 20 year old amplifier and it has no problems. I love Peavey quality from the 70's, 80's, and 90's. Some of the most dependable amps ever made say Peavey on the front... In really cheesy lettering.

Features — 8
This is a blue stripe Peavey Studio Pro 110. The color of the stripe means that it was made in the early 90's. Some of Peavey's best amps were made in those years. It's a 2 channel amp. It has a clean and a lead channel. The lead channel is where you can get distorted sounds. It is solid state. The distortion is not bad, though. You really have to be careful with the settings, but you can get a really good overdrive if you are careful. Some of the sounds that I have gotten are reminiscent of Marshall amps. Reminiscent doesn't mean exact. You have to pay attention to the Saturation knob settings if you want to get good tone. The lead channel has a Pre knob, which is where you overdrive the signal. The Saturation knob is basically and accent to the distorted signal from the Pre setting. It is meant to mimic the compression and voltage sag that is found in true tube amps. If you crank the Saturation too much in relation to the Pre, you get a very fuzzy (and a bit fizzy) distortion. However, if you use it properly, you can get a really nice, tight-sounding distortion that sustains very pleasantly. The amp is 65 watts running through a 10" speaker. It's loud enough for my small room. It could probably get loud enough for band practice, based on the volume I've gotten without even trying to push it. It has a headphone out, too. However, the headphone out is not pleasant sounding. It's extremely thin, harsh, and flat. Use it only in an emergency. It also has real spring reverb. I know that many people love their modeling amps, but I have to say that there is no substitute for spring reverb. When it comes to distortion, I don't really care about "asymmetrical clipping" and "even order harmonics". The difference just isn't that outstanding to me. When it comes to reverb, though, I can hear the difference between real and modeled. I recently had to sell my Fender Vibro Champ XD to get a little extra money to help the family make it through the week. An unexpected benefit of that hardship was that I bought this amp, which was far cheaper, and it came with spring reverb! Why have amp makers started going with digital rather than spring reverb? I don't know. Seriously, going from a Fender Vibro Champ XD to the Peavey Studio Pro 110 is not too big of a step down. My score reflects my love of true spring reverb. By the way, you can get a footswitch for this amp, but I don't have one.

7 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I agree with the review. These old Peaveys are no-BS, plug-in-and-play style amps that nobody can make any more. All of the new solid state crap is loaded with built in effects and amp models and all that digital crap. These are simple and decent sounding amps. We have a Studio Pro 65 (?) at our band practice place and use it as a second guitar amp (there's an Engl Screamer that sounds much better but still, the Peavey sounds OK). There are also Marshall MG amps and the Peavey cleans are so much better. The distortion is also decent. The thing I don't like about the amp is that it has shared EQ and the channels need to be EQed differently to sound good (clean needs more treble than distortion, it sounds dull if there's too little treble but if there's too much treble on distortion, it sounds too harsh). But all in all, if you are a beginner and need a practice amp, buy an old solid state Peavey. They don't have any "fancy" features that you don't need which make the new amps overpriced and these don't cost a lot, much less than the ordinary beginner amps (Line6 Spider and Marshall MG) and also sound better. These amps have everything you need to start playing the guitar.
    And I agree with you, sir! Just one variance: my amp doesn't have shared eq. The distortion channel has an eq separate from the clean channel. I think you are familiar with an earlier version, maybe mid-80's. The Peaveys from that era did have shared eq. I owned a Bandit from around 1987 that was set up like that. I still love Bandits, but that was the one big flaw with that amp.
    I had one of these I bought for like $220.00 brand new in 1992 or so. Built like a tank, not the best sound palette but for an amp you didn't mind leaving in the trunk of your car it could keep up in a band situation. Sorry I sold it.
    Leather Sleeves
    I'd say it's pretty hit and miss with these Peaveys. I've got an old Supreme that sounds pretty good, but I've played some other Transtube series amps that sound awefull.
    I agree with the reviewer. I have a Bandit 75 blue stripe, and a Studio Pro 112 red stripe. Both are excellent amps as basic platforms. They have good sound that can be great with the right pedal or guitar, and they are very cheap used, and never break.