I'm about to sell this amp to buy something more current. I know I'll miss it, but it's time to move on.
Model Year: 1987
Price: $800.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Roselle Music
I have the sister amp to this, the SS150H. It's a 150 watt head, and I have the matching 4x12. It's always been reliable, but definately has a dated sound. This was out at the height of the 80's solid-state revolution, and was top dog back then.
The sound, like I said, is very dated. Think Dokken, Ratt, etc. The gain is nice, not too fuzzy if you keep it at about 2/3 of the way up. The greatest thing about it is the mid contour knob. You can dial in some great tones. The clean channel is incredible, and the whole amp takes to pedals remarkably well.
I've had very little problem with this amp in the 23 years I've owned it. I had it serviced a few years ago just to take care of some corroded connections and few cold solder joints.
I dont like the power amp in it so i chopped up the cabinet and made it into a head and use it in conjunction w/ my vtm-60 as the power amp. it has killer distortion (think Godsmack) and can put a BOSS metalzone to shame (in some instances). the distortion channel w the chorus kicked in drops the volume, but will give ya a close approximation of george lynch's tone from "When Heaven Comes Down." trust me. i purchased mine for 150(was pretty messed up for sales purposes, but had a celestion g12M-65 in it)
Where Obtained: guitar center
Gain, bass, mid, high level, reverb, rate(for chorus) separate for each channel. single depth depth control(for chorus) stereo effects loop on back panel. mono effects loop on front panel. stereo XLR outs(for direct recording, not useful,IMO). mono line out. 4 speaker outs. 140 watt solid state/180 into 4 ohm
Since it is solid state, it isnt too terribly affected by the input of the pickups(loudness and distortion amount). it is great for super heavy distortion, but the power amp is sorely lacking in the balls dept.(i suggest using a tube power amp). the clean, IMO, surpasses a roland JC-120. but... it can be noisy but an active pickup should solve the problem. terribly loud (even without a tube power amp)
Pretty straightforward in operation. doesnt need to much fiddling.
The ampeg amplifiers that i have had, havent had many problems. alot of peeps complain about the chorus channel screwing up. i have encountered this and it is a resistor in the power amp that has come loose. open it up and look on the PCB by the speaker out jacks. you will see a couple of white ceramic looking rectangles w/ wire running thru them. they usually have beconme dislodged in some way. fix it w/ solder or what ever means ya have. damn heavy amp, too.