Price paid: $ 1650
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Sound — 10
Right now I'm either using a Schecter Hellraiser w/EMG's or a Dean CFH w/Blackouts while playing through this amp, and I have to admit that they compliment this amp wonderfully. I also have a Gibson Les Paul 57 VOS, so those Who wonder how passive sound have no fear. They sound great. This is a very dynamic and articulate amp to what ever you play, so buyers beware: if you have sloppy technique this might not be the amp for you. On the other hand, like me, this amp could really teach you dicipline and make you a better player through hard work. It has an exceptional rich distortion and a tremendous low end depending on your cab. It can be pretty noisey without a Noise Suppresor in front of it since it's a high gain amp. I suggest a Boss NS-2, works for me. I got this amp because I wanted to get a combonation of a tight responsive rythem and a sharp appealing lead tone in one package for my style Metal. Being played with 2 guitars previously mentioned helps me get what I want. My whole setup is one of the 2 guitars, Avenger, Vader 2x15 600w cab, Zack Wylde OD, and a Boss NS-2. Amp Settings: Gain-4, Bass-6, Mids-8.5, Treble-6.5, Master Vol-2ish, Presence-5, Depth-8.5. Zack Wylde OD pedal settings: Output-10, Tone-6.5, Gain-4. I base my overall sound off of Shadows Fall and a mix of several other modern band tones.
Overall Impression — 10
I tried about all of the tube amps you can at a guitar center including Mesa, Marshall, Krank, VHT, Bogner (not Uberscall though), and even the new EVH III and none have impressed me or suited me for tastes as much as Soldano. I'm going to steal a quote I heard about Soldano once because it really suites it; "Don't test Drive one if you can't afford it, because you won't wanna play anything else after you do." Hope this helps some. Thanks.
Reliability & Durability — 10
The reliability & durability of this should defidently outlast me. Soldano sure knows how to make quality products. Despite one power blowing I haven't an issue yet. Besides, the tube blowing was more my fault, a mixture of the outlet I was using and the garage being over 95 deg at the time.
Features — 7
The Soldano Avenger is a 100w single channel amp all tube with 2 inputs, no FX-Loop, and no headphone jack. The bottom input is used more for a straight forward clean sound or a bluesier tone and respnds very well to pedal. The upper input is used for the patended overdrive channel produced by the SLO 100. Despite it's straight-forward design it's quite versitle due to the high gain setting being able to clean up so well at lower volumes and the nifty ability to Switch from a 100w to a 50w by removing the outer 2 power tubes. It's controls are: Gain, Bass, Mids, Treble, Master Vol, Presence, and Depth.