Price paid: $ 600
Purchased from: Local Music Store
Sound — 10
I use a Gibson Les Paul Vintage Mahogany with this amp. My pickups are Burstbucker Pros. I play everything from blues to metal. It might take a while since the first few days you have this amp it can be a bit difficult to figure out how to tweak it just right, but you can get just about any sound out of it. It sounds almost identical to a tube amp. It can deliver everything from beautiful cleans to crazy ammounts of gain. It sounds wonderful.
Overall Impression — 9
I play many styles of music, and this suits them all. If you play mostly blues or classic rock, I'd recommend going with the standard Valvetronix series instead, but if you play a lot of hard rock or metal, go with this one. This is geared more for metal and hard rock, but can produce some perfect sounds for blues and ska and such, and has some gorgeous cleans. The only downside to this amp is it takes A lot of tweaking to get the perfect sound out of it, but the sounds it is capable of producing are amazing. I play a lot of Sublime, and this is perfect. I play a lot of Metallica as well, and this also suits that even better. I compared this to a Peavey Valveking, and regular Valvetronix. I liked the Vox sound better than the Valveking (didn't like the valveking distortion), and it was close between this and the regular valvetronix. I'd say it is a close tie between this and the standard Vox AD series, but I went with this because I was able to get similar clean sounds out of this, and was able to get much more gain out of this. Overall this is an excellent amp, and would recommend it to anyone.
Reliability & Durability — 8
I would definitely trust this amp in any situation. It does have a breakable tube in it, so I wouldn't go throwing it out the window or anything, but it seems pretty sturdy, and very reliable. It has never given me any problems so far. The metal grill seems like it could prevent most things that would get your speakers knocked in.
Features — 8
This is a Vox 100 watt hybrid amp, meaning it is a mix of SS and tube. It has 2 12inch speakers. This amp has 11 amp models, and 11 effects. Most of the amp models are great, except a couple need tweaking to get a great sound. You can program in 2 presets to your liking. There are 9 distorted channels, and 2 clean ones. The clean channels are exceptionally nice sounding. Most of the channels have some built in effects, but they can be turned off using the bypass button, or you can pick a different effect using the effect selector knob. You can change the sound of each channel to your liking using the the treble, bass, gain, etc. You can get nice bluesy tones this way from some of the channels. The distorted channels are mostly good, none of them are horrible. Thrashed and modern are great for Metallica and Megadeth style stuff, Raged and modern both sound good for Rage Against The Machine, and pretty much any style of hard rock sounds good through most of the channels. The effects are for the most part good. The main problem with the effects is you can't combine them, there are 11 built in effects, with several of those being combinations that came built in. You can edit the properties of the effects, but a little more customization would have been a nice touch. There is an optional footswitch, but it's an extra $35.