Price paid: $ 250
Purchased from: Craigslist
Sound — 8
You can reasonably play just about any style on this amplifier by playing it with the right guitar. I have a pretty diverse collection of guitars so I can do it all. Sure it won't stand up to a mesa rectifier for you metal addicts and it won't give you the glassy perfect clean of a Fender twin, but if you are willing to spend the time on dialing in your own town this amp is really quite good for just about anything. I play mostly punk and hard rock and thanks to the good overdrive channel I get a fantastic tone. The amp is just a tad noisy but if you have a noise suppressor like all gigging musicians should it's not an issue. As I previously stated the Distortion channel can go from mild to brutal depending on your preference. This is a great tube amp for it's price range (I practically stole it) so it gets an 8 here as well. If it were silent, had a good reverb unit, and could match a Twin or Rectifier on their respective grounds it would be a 10. Since it's not a specialty amp and it does everything moderately well it falls just a bit short of perfection. Still a FANTASTIC amp though.
Overall Impression — 9
For the styles I play this amp has suited me well. Nice distortion channel and definitely enough gain to play punk/hard rock/metal. I've been playing for 8 years and own an array of guitars and have had many different amplifiers. If it were stolen or lost and I could find another one in my price range I would buy it no problem. I love it's overall sound, but hate it's weight and awful reverb unit. Better than any Solid State you could get and a great first tube amplifier or a tube amp for an experienced musician with a budget.
Reliability & Durability — 10
The thing is really really heavy, but for the right tone you should be willing to lug weight no matter what amp it is. I've never had a problem with the amp but I have always followed tube amp operation guidelines to ensure there would be no issues. The thing about a tube amp is that if you aren't careful with it it will crap out on you. Don't let those tubes rattle and make sure you let em heat up before use. That being said I've never had a problem. I know others have but I can't base my assessment on that. I HAVE gigged with this amplifier. Perfect score here.
Features — 8
I believe this amp is a 2009 or 2010 model as the previous owner claimed he had owned it for around six months at the time I purchased it from him. It has two channels, a clean and an overdrive. The clean channel features a bright button and a volume boost, and the overdrive channel features a gain boost button and a volume boost. The clean channel is pretty impressive. The bright Switch changes the tone structure of the clean channel from a Jazzy sound to one more suited for Folk, Country, etc. The highs are a bit harsh ESP when the bright button is engaged but that can be solved by turning down the presence knob. The overdrive channel can handle just about anything thanks to the the gain boost. Without it on you can go from blues to classic rock to punk by turning the gain knob. Then with the gain knob engaged you have a metal/hard rock machine. Great overdrive channel. The only thing this amp lacks is a good reverb unit. The built in unit isn't really all that useful. Also I would have liked to see a master volume knob instead of just individual volume knobs for the channels. The amp gets an 8 here.