ToneLab ST review by Vox

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Ease of Use: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 7.8 Good
  • Users' score: 6.6 (66 votes)
Vox: ToneLab ST

Price paid: € 200

Purchased from: Sky Music

Sound — 7
There are 33 amp models. The clean and overdrive-like ones are good, with good dynamics, but the higher you turn the gain knob the worse the sound gets. Especially the US Metal and Boutique amp models. It's the same about the distortion pedal models, they're pretty bad too. On the other hand, if you want clean or slightly overdriven sound - this is the thing (the whole ToneLab series, that is). It quite gives you the feel of a tube amp. The modulation effects are surprisingly good, except for Rotary, I personally don't like it. There's also a bunch of cabinet models, so you can really get a big variety of sounds.

Overall Impression — 7
Pretty useful unit for beginners, practice, some "minor" recordings and such. If you want more aggressive sound - pass it, or use it in combination with some stompbox pedal. Read this review, then review your needs, and you'll know if this one's right for you!

Reliability & Durability — 8
This is when things get serious... Tonelab ST will last you forever if you don't use it in a band or for gigs. I've had mine for 2 and a half years now. The first 2 years were great, but when I joined a band 6 months ago, and started stomping on it for at least 3 hours a day every day - it just couldn't take it. The display blinks, parameters sometimes change on their own, the expression pedal doesn't work... If you own one - don't ever take it out of your room!

Ease of Use — 9
It's not that "agile", but it's pretty simple. You won't have any trouble creating sounds with it as long as you don't have to do it on stage. The front panel of the unit is as self-explaining as it can get, but on stage you'll have to get down to turn the knobs and such things. But, my advice is NOT to use Tonelab ST on stage. Read further to find out why...

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I have a Gibson Les Paul Traditional Pro, a Mesa Boogie Triple Rectifier
    (the last review) If you have a Mesa Boogie why would you use the amp models? They are not meant to use with that kind of amp. Plug the pedal into pa or use it with headphones and then there's some use for the amp models!
    iron maiden 13
    I got it about a year and a half ago. I have to say that I'm totaly satisfied with it's sound, although it was quite hard to figuer out at first. However it has a flaw. The DC 12V input actually broke from the inside! According to the technician who repaired it (it cost me 37 euros) said that apparently it has a weak spot over there. I was just wondering if anybody else had a similar problem.