Marshall DSL40C 1x12" 40 Watt Tube Combo Amp Reviews4.8/5.0 based on 17 customer reviews
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from Petal, MS USA
April 18, 2013Music Background:
guitarist, vocalist, songwriter, interpid recording novice, overall gear monkey
Excellent Tone!!!I don't think I have ever written a review before but this amplifier justifies the effort. I have been playing for over thirty years... been through literally dozens of amplifiers of all stripes; Mesa, Fender, Peavey. Additionally I don't think I am one of those guys that can talk about "my" tone...I will reserve that for folks who sell millions of albums. But for a working class/journeyman guitarist like myself a few things are critical; #1-build quality (you want your hard earned dollars to hang around for years if possible), #2 ease of use -especially on the gig, #3 responsiveness from your guitar, #4 truly good tone that keeps you focused on playing versus thinking about your equipment. This amp has all these qualities in spades! I have a few effects between my guitar ( a 2004 Gibson Custom 195 7Les Paul Goldtop Reissue ) and the Dsl40c--but for the first time in my life I don't want any!!! the TONE of this amp is just that GREAT. Very repsonsive to changes in Volume and Tone from my Les Paul; more than one overdrive voice --the clean channel stays clean at volumes to compete with a loud drummer. I really can't say enough. Hands down the best overall playing experience I have had with an amp since I started playng live. The amp just seems to breathe. The tone is woody with just enough hair on the drive channel---and when I go from say 4 to 5 on my volume control on my Paul to full on 10, there seems to be just enough umpff to get over the drummer for solos. Then I'll just back it back down for dirty rhythm parts; yes you can actually hear the amp clean up a little on quieter volume settings.
Plus, Excellent customer service from my Sweetwater rep Tony Dayton! My advice, for what thats worth, let Tony or one of the other awesome folks at Sweetwater help you choose a great guitar then take the DSL40c for spin BEFORE you buy anything else. It might serve to keep the G.A.S. away!!!
from Oakland, NJ USA
April 9, 2013Music Background:
Less is MoreI'm impressed in the variety of tones you can get out of this amp without having to force it. Marshall has done a great job creating a complete package at this price. I'm even more impressed with the service I received from Phil Schwan and Sweetwater. Thanks guys!
from Chicago, IL
March 22, 2013Music Background:
WHOAI've had Marshalls in the past, but this one is now my go to amp. Just like an old plexi, It cleans up really nice when you back off the volume on you guitar. There really isn't and need for an overdrive pedal with this one, unless you need it for a little more boost in volume. The reverb is a little weak, but I really don't use it that often. Now if I just had a cover for it....I just use a little compression on it and it's ON!!!
from far away
March 18, 2013Music Background:
Live Sound / festival & bar gigs
DSL40C is a FANTASTIC Amp!!Fast delivery from Sweetwater. The amp's green channel is magnificent. Removed the Seventy-80 speaker and replaced it : )
The amp is heavy but so easy to set up.
I opted to do the C19 mod; great choice which makes for smooth transition between green and red channels.
Footswitch works to change between red/green channels only; does not a/b or switch modes within single (red/green) channels.
Tone, volume, cut really are both user-friendly and audience friendly.
A lot of really good el34 goodness with a musician-friendly price.
Ryan M. (sales engineer) is always supremely helpful.
from FL USA
February 16, 2013Music Background:
Jazz Guitarist/Rock Guitarist
Great Tone !I Bought this amp today and i must say i am blown away by the remarkable Clean Crunch and Lead Tones you can get from this amp, and don't be fooled by its size because it can get pretty loud. If you are considering buying this amp do it! it has a great build and is perfect for smaller gigs, Jazz gigs, rock, anything. You will not be disappointed. I hope this helps you make your decision.
February 4, 2013Music Background:
13 years, singer, songwriter
OMG, MY EARS ARE HURTING!....in a good wayBY FAR, THE BADDEST 1X12 COMBO ON THE MARKET. I HAVE HEARD ALL AMPS ACROSS THE BOARD. THIS THING IS STUPID GOOD. MUCH LARGER THAN OTHER 1X12 CABINETS. PENTODE/TRIODE SWITCHING, THE LIST GOES ON. I CANT BELEIVE THIS THING IS ONLY $700.
I also have a Peavey Classic 50 4x10 combo and while I love Peavey Mississippi products, there is simply no comparison.
BART GOOD IS THE MAN AT SWEETWATER!!
January 1, 2013
BrilliantThis purchase is my first ever tube amplifier. I couldn't have asked for a better amp. I knew the sound i wanted and this amp delivers that and then some. I know people usually say fenders have better cleans, but i absolutely love the clean on this amplifier. I play alot of rock, hard rock type music and its perfect for those. Has a great marshall punch and for a good price. Great support from sweetwater too as always.
from Las Veagas, NV.
December 26, 2012Music Background:
Blues Rock, Hard Rock, Heavy Metal.
Marshall DSL40CI have been looking for a compact amp that can delivery tons of tone. I play Blues, Rock, Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. The DSL40C continuously delivers for me. I was a little concern as this amp is made in Vietnam, but all that went away as soon as I started playing. It is tough build, rock solid. The clean channel is a thing of beauty, clear well rounded. Hard to OD with my 57 equipped SG. But with the crunch on, it is a new little beast. Fun OD at low gain and very classic rock at higher gain. I have found my self using the guitar volume knob to clean the sound more often that I am used to. On the super lead channels is where the beast come unleashed you cab get tones from classic rock to heavy metal and everything in the middle. I have spend a lot of time tweaking with all the knobs to produce more and more tones. The presence and resonance controls are simply amazing. They allow you to tweak your high/lows frequencies by boosting them as you dial. This give additional flexibility ans you are shaping your tone without changing your EQ. Hey and you can do all that at 40 watts and at a more neighborhood friendly 20 watts at a flick of a switch. Last and not least, the reverb is mild, nothing as noticeable as a Fender amp, but it those a great job of adding to the tone. This amps like to be played loud and will cut through the loudest drums, you can't go wrong with it. I have been playing guitar for 34 years and I have gone from big heavy stacks set ups to much smaller and manageable equipment. I am glad I have bought DSL40C and I will strongly recommend it.
from Deltona, Florida
November 7, 2012Music Background:
Playing on and off for year's
Marshall Quality At A Good PriceMarshall has come back, Right out of the box you have a very good sounding Combo and priced better than anything i have seen for many year's,Over look the fact that it's made in vietnam,I took mine apart to put some side handles and caster wheels on it, And to be honest
everything is built just as if were to come out of england,In a way you have best of both world's here,I had a DSL 401 and they also had a DSL 201,and my DSL back in 2000 cost $1150.00, Now you have the DSL401 and the DSL201 in one amp By a flick of a switch and this combo has more features,Sweetwater are great and understanding people to work with,The only thing i can see changing is the speaker down the road,It's celestion's low end line,But still sounds good.
from Texas City, TX USA
October 15, 2012Music Background:
Awesome Mrshall!This amp has that great, beefy marshall oomph! Clean is truly clean, crunch is very touch sensitive - strum light and it stays clean, strum hard, it breaks up beutifully. Ultra 1 is very nice heavy distortion without being too much. Ultra 2 is the metal realm for sure. EQ is easy to dial in, and makes a big difference in the overall sound. Reverb is good. Not excessive like Fenders can be.
from Alexandria,VA ,USA
May 2, 2013Music Background:
Marshall DSL 40C 1X12 Combo AmpThis is the first Marshal tube amp I've ever owned and I must say I'm really impressed. The clean /crunch channel is really super sounding as are the lead channels. And this amp is LOUD. Don't let the 40 watt rating fool you. I can only run it in triode mode (20 watts) in my smsll music room but even then it still is killer. Also the resonance control for dialing in the right amount of bass responce is a great feature. The only thing I'm not pleased with is the reverb.There's just not enough of it. But all things considered I can live with it.
In my opinion Marshall struck gold with this amp. I have a Carvin V3Micro Head with a 2X12 cab ,an early '80s Laney Pro Tube Lead AOR Series and a Jet City 333 Combo and this Mashal is just as good if not better than all of them. The price is right and if you're looking for a great mid powered all tube combo buy this one.
from Chapel Hill, Nc
April 25, 2013Music Background:
Excellent Marshall ToneEL34 powered valve amp!!!! Need I say more? very cool World renown Marshall "crunch" sound and shimmering cleans are in this amp. Very affordable and the ability to go half power will save your ears. The only thing stopping me from giving this amp 5 stars is the reverb...When I first got it, the reverb was so "delicate" I thought it was broken. So, if your expecting reverb with this amp, keep looking.
from Roanoke, VA USA
March 29, 2013Music Background:
Hobbyest player, 50-year music & guitar enthusiast
Great Flexible ToneCapable, flexible, and powerful amp! I am having a blast dialing in the sounds I want. Pretty much got the Classic Gain set, still working on the Ultra Gain channel.
Strong, solid, well-made piece of equipment. Expected no less from Marshall.
from Rochester, MN
March 12, 2013Music Background:
Marshall DSL40CJust a wonderful little amp. My other amp is a JVM410H half-stack, and it's too big and cumbersome for some of my gigs.
The DSL40C also has a brighter Super Lead type of sound which works really well in large and noisy bands. It cuts through and is not muddy.
from Rockford, IL
February 19, 2013Music Background:
Pro Musician Classic Rock.
This Amp KicksThis amp just kicks major Butt. Ive owned a lot Marshalls and I have to say this thing keeps right up with them, I did end up putting a Celestion Vintage 30 in it which took all the harshness out of the Gain Channels which I thought the Stock Celstion 70/80 was a little too bright for my liking. I tell ya the Vintage 30 took this amp over the top. If your thinking about getting this amp, what are you waiting for? Buy it!
from So. Cal.
January 24, 2013Music Background:
long time wanna be
Nice sound, mostly happy...Big warm sound. Beautiful machine, well made and all that. Reverb and Presence are very subtle. To the extent that it's almost hard to tell if they are doing anything at all. Wish it had a headphone output.
December 24, 2012Music Background:
Hobbyist/student/garage band guitar player
Its a "real" MarshallI bought this amp because I wanted a tighter rock tone than I could get with my Peavey Classic 30 which does a great job with blues to classic rock tone. I play a lot of 70's metal (Sabbath, Judas Priest, etc) though and the PV fell a bit short of those sounds.
The DSL40 turns out to be a perfect complement to the Classic 30. It actually has better cleans since the C30 gets some grit pretty early while the DSL stays quite clean even at pretty high volume (though not as bright as a Fender clean.) On clean in crunch mode with the gain turned up, you can find great classic rock tones and that AC/DC sound.
Where some folks find a problem is when you switch to the gain channel. The DSL40C has a LOT of gain on tap and WILL sound fizzy with the gain cranked and the volume low. Crank the volume though and it blossoms into that wonderful Marshall roar though. Keep in mind this is a loud amp even on the 1/2 power mode and for the best sound you need a bit of volume. It doen't have to be ear bleeding loud but louder than some might consider suitable for bedroom use.
With so much gain on tap you'll have to keep if fairly low if you are looking for classic Marshall tone. Its easy to dial in more gain than you want for Classic rock and it even goes well beyond 70's metal into more modern high gain voicings. I'm not a super high gain player, so I haven't really worked to find good tones with the gain really cranked. I find the heavy rock tone (again we're talking Sabbath not modern stuff) I want on lead one with the gain fairly low (like around 2-3, the number not clock position). The gain on lead 2 goes well into modern metal, which is not my thing. I've read comments that the open back combo design is too loose for the tight, almost clipped kind of base sound modern metal players are looking for, so if that's your thing, this amp would probably do it for you if you use a closed back extension cab instead of the combo speaker.
All in all I think this is a great offering from Marshall that is much better sounding than the previous offerings in this price range. It would make a great amp for gigging in small to medium venues.