ID:60 - Tube sound and tube feel, without tubes..
Had this amp for about 2 months now. Sweetwater - perfect as always.
You play live? Get it with the footswitch. It's important.
Yes we know, SS amps are not tube amps. And they are not. I've had both. This is going away the best SS amp I have owned. SS modeling amps sound cheap, That is NOT what this is. What bugged me about SS amps is not even so much the sound but the FEEL of playing one. Horrible.
This one however, is a deal breaker. The TVP makes this amp. It changes the feel of the SS play completely. So is it better than a tube amp? Yes and no. Tubes create their own tone, very nice tone, the best tone. But it takes a lot of messing around to get them there and within a year or two it all changes as the tube wear out. Also tube amps are limited with just a few available sounds. I am not a pedal fan so I need lots of on board selections - AND tube amps are expense and heavy.
So that being said, this is where THIS amp shines. You can program just about any tone, including LEAD punch ups into this thing. Set your pre, add whatever effects you need, THEN dial in the TVP selection to make your sound get out there just the way you like it, sweet!
12 programs are available from the FW and that is plenty for me. When you crank it, it is 90-95% tube sound and 90% tube feel. The next time you turn it on, its plays the same. And 5 years from now, it will sound exactly the same. I run a 2x12 closed bottom cab and it is plenty loud. And the more I crank it, the better it gets.
There are only 2 drawbacks I have discovered. Use the SW for backing up your program settings and updating firmware. That's it. The rest of it is pretty much useless to a gigging musician.
The second flaw, if you want to call it that, is changing the programming on the fly. Since only the Volume and a couple of other panel controls are active in a programmed mode, make sure you have setup each to your liking beforehand.
But without question, I will keep this amp. It transports easy, is plenty loud and no more getting to a gig and wondering what will it sound like today or if a tube is about ready to go off in the ditch.
I have already sold off my others including a VOX and a Mesa. It would be pointless to keep them. This does 90% of their sound and has 500% of their features with 0% of tube drawbacks.