I searched high and low for an amp I liked better than this and I could not find one. Even the mighty Marshall DSL and TSL series seemed wimpy by comparison. My main complaint about this amp is that it has no casters. So I made up for this by buying a cheap little portable dolly at a hardware store that I put my amp on to wheel it around. That's the worst aspect of the amp. The best aspect is the juicy, thick, tone and great distortion. Here's how this amp could be better: Peavey needs to make a 60 watt 5150 head. I would really prefer a half stack, but I didn't think the 120 watt version had the tone of the combo. If it were lost, I would shoot myself for being an idiot. How can you lose an amplifier? If it were stolen, I would definately get another. This is my
amp, and part of my
sound now. I would like to see the guy trying to steal it though. It's not like he could run away with it!
Model Year: 2002
Price: $1000.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Gianetta's Music
This amplifier section has features reading as follows, from left to right: Hi and Low gain inputs, channel select switch, rhythm pre-gain, bright and crunch switches, Lead pre-gain, low/mid/high equalization, reverb, rhythm post, lead post, resonance, presence, on and standby switches.
The rear panel features are: ground rocker switch, external speaker input, remote input, effects return, effects send
. The rhythm and lead channels are footswitchable, as is the reverb on/off. This is a very loud, 60 watt, all tube, amp with more than powerful enough for any band situation. The cabinet contruction provides a thump like a 4x12.
I play either a Carvin DC 127 or a Heartfield Talon. I use no effects right now other than the reverb on the amp. I play metal and hard rock mainly with this amp. It does the job nicely for any high gain or rock style. Although I don't think it's an ideal blues amp, you can achieve a very good blues tone with the rhythm channel. I have played Marshalls, Laneys, Fenders, Rhinos, and others and I like this combo the best. It has a nice juicyness to it that even the Marshall didn't have, along with really great high gain distortion and tone. I have never compared it to a Mesa, but at their price I won't bother. Yes, the rumors are true, it can be noisy in certain situations, but it really doesn't bother me and it's a small price to pay for the tone. Clean at high volumes? Uhm...no. It should be noted that there is no clean channel on this amp. I put the rhythm pre-gain on 3 and roll the volume back on my guitar and get a decent clean sound. Hey...high gain pickups, high gain amp...clean is hard to come by. To the last question, yes, yes, and yes, it does distort to my liking. In fact, it has so much gain that I keep it at only 6 or 7 to keep the tone tight. No, I'm not a wuss or something. 6 or 7 really is more than enough overdrive even for tones like In Flames, Iced Earth, Slayer, etc.
Here's a point I want to make: In the past I have used the original 5150 head/cab setup in bands and for personal use. I feel this 60 watt combo version has even better tone than it's 120 watt big brother. I can't explain this, other than in the literature I got with the amp it said that the clean sound was enchanced a bit and maybe this effects the overall tone. Also, being only 60 watts, it's easier to drive the tubes hard (or so the music store guy tells me), so maybe that accounts for it. Whatever the reason, I much prefer the tone of this 212 to the head.
No, it's not programmable. No, there's no emulation of any kind. No, there's no tone modeling. No, there's no digital effects. These amp manufacturers can take all that nonsense and ram it in their ouput sockets. This amp is simple. Plug in, turn up, play your guitar. Of course, you will likely fiddle around a bit to find settings you like, but not much. Here's my settings, as of right now anyway: High gain input, rhythm pre:3, bright in, crunch out, lead pre: 6, low:9, mid: 2, high: 7, Reverb: 10, rhythm post: varies, lead post: varies, resonance: 8, presence: 7.
This thing weighs almost 90 pounds, and no casters either. It's 100 % heavy duty, to say the least. I have no doubt it will take years of abuse and be reliable for playing live.