Price paid: $ 215
Purchased from: eBay
Sound — 10
I have only played this amplifier through my Fender Stratocaster w/stock single coils (my Les Paul is at the local luthier's). Damn, it sounds good. I'm not sure that it could really sound GOOD for METAL unless cranked, but for 70s hard rock, it is a dream. It is noisy for my Strat, but my strat's single coils are noisy regardless; I'm sure it will be much quieter with my Les Paul. Unlike what most reviewers say, clean sounds ARE attainable on this amplifier. I'm not sure if it's just my guitar, but I find that, plugged into the High Gain input, volume fairly loud, and preamp volume (gain) turned to 7-8, I can obtain a clean sound just by rolling down the volume pot on my guitar to about three, and adding chorus. Sounds perfect to me. As I said before, it's crunch is eerily similar to the Marshall JCM 800; slightly buzzy and thin at low volume, but past three (which is fairly loud) on the master volume, it opens up wonderfully. The distortion isn't incredibly brutal, but I"m sure that when pushed HARD, and with a metal-type guitar, it would deliver well.
Overall Impression — 10
A perfect amplifier for my styles! I have been playing for about Nine years, and while my actual ownership of gear is fairly limited, I have played some of the world's finest amps, including Marshall JCM 800s and Plexis, Mesas, Peavey 5150, and more. Those amps range into $1000+. This amp is $250, and sounds INCREDIBLY similar to some of the amps listed above, especially the Marshalls. If this amp was stolen or lost, I would most certainly buy another. I compared this amplifier to many others in similar pricerange, including the ValveKing, Marshall MG, and even amps of a slightly more expensive nature, such as the DSL and TSL Marshalls. This amp is SO much better than ANYTHING else in it's price range, and even sounds better (to my ears) than the DSLs and TSLs. It has a very authentic-sounding British Invasion Marshall roar. Bottom line: if you play styles similar to AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, The Who, Thin Lizzy, Deep Purple, and others, then BUY THIS AMP; you will not find a better deal around.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I haven't had it long enough to give an honest answer; I would say that I would never take a tube amp to a gig w/o a backup though. It seems to be built rock solid though.
Features — 9
This is, I believe, a 2008 Windsor all-tube amplifier. I play mainly classic rock, a little bit of early Metal, and softer, bluesier stuff like early Rock n' Roll. This amp is perfect for these genres. It only has one channel, but to my surprise (unlike other reviewers) I found that the Windsor was capable of cleans, while plugged into the high-gain input, just by rolling down the volume pot on my guitar and adding some light chorus. This amp is EXTREMELY powerful; I haven't found an opportunity to turn it up past 4; it sounds great though. This is an extremely simple amp. With it's single channel setup, similar to a JCM800, it has very few "bells and whistles". I'm playing it through a cheap Peavey Supreme 4x12 cabinet, and it sounds like magic; EXTREMELY similar to my friend's JCM800 amplifier.