Marshall AVT50X Amp Review
Original Author: Ivan Milenkovic
Weapon: Guitar Amp
Model: Marshall AVT50X
Price paid: 420e (~500$ on eBay)
AVT50X Combo is a new ValveState (hybrid) amp built on its predecessor VS2000 AVT50X. The old one has a "VS2000" mark on front panel while this new series have furnished mask with some decorative spot design on the right.
- 50Watts of (RMS) power
- Preamp section is driven with one ECC83 tube, poweramp is solidstate
- 2 channels clean-overdrive
- Separate Bass, Treble for clean EQ, Bass, Middle Treble for Drive EQ
- Separate Pre-amp sections (using the same tube though..)
- Accutronics spring reverb
- FX Loop (+4dB)
- Footswtich (1 button)
- CD Input, Headphone Jack
- Emulated DI Out
- Custom Celestion 12" speaker
Works very well for me, this is my second amp, used G30RCD before and bought this one for gigs. This is around minimum wattage amp that you can gig with, and it does it fine. Not to heavy or robust, ideal for small clubs. It has only one tube but that can be an advantage sometimes.. (see reliability) It is not very versatile because there is a bunch of amp in this price range that have bigger versatility BUT that does not always needs to be an advantage. For my purposes this baby has 10 as it has all the versatility I need. The amp is capable of emulating that classic Marshall tone. Yes that is what is does. It EMULATES. Don`t get me wrong, this little thing does it pretty good, after all it is A Marshall, not some third party emulating FX bunched amp.
THE CLEAN CHANNEL
It has nice and twangy clean, little muddy in comparison with Fender amp but hey.. Fender does not cost this much and it does`n have THAT kind of distortion. The sound is starting to crack at maybe 3o`clock because of the solid state poweramp, but everything behind that is great. Like I said, the preamp pot is separate for both of the channels so you can make clean also very dirty if you want. On the other had if you want a good sparkly clean on HIGH volumes, this amp can`t do it, it can get crunchy as soon as you drive the poweramp beyond 12o`clock. ONLY when preamp is at 9oclock and poweramp is at say 2-3 o clock you can get a decent clean but that is to quiet for gigs in my opinion since the OD channel has much more loudness.
OD channel is very good, again only to the point of poweramp`s 9 o`clock setting when tone quality drops because of solid state transistors. You can use mainly this channel for distortion but it is NOT extra brutal - if you play heavy metal or similar styles you need an extra pedal like MT2 or something. I use SD1 to spice up the OD channel and it works great with this amp.
I play mostly blues, funk, classic rock, progressive rock and jazz music. I play mostly Fender American Stratocaster with HSS pickup combo. I have some pedals in setup but the most important thing to mention is DD20 which is FX Looped and output set to +4dB (pro value) which is the return output signal rating of the amp. The second important thing is a distortion pedal which i mentioned and that is SD1. You sometimes just NEED that extra push and this pedal does it great for the styles i`m in.
The amp is a little bit noisy, but i notice it only when i`m at home practicing. Although noise is not that big of a deal, when switching from OD to clean channel (and if clean channel is on bigger volume that OD channel) you get a small "wump" sound. I tried this on several AVT50 combos and they all have the same "problem". The thing is you just need to set up a OD channel to equal-or-higher value than the clean channel.
-1 for not having a little better reverb
-1 for having little low-end at high volume (You CAN add a Marshall AVT412 cab for a bigger sound )
-1 for having that "wump" sound when switching between channels
This amps reliability is EXCELLENT! My local radio travels with two of VS2000s 2-3 times a week on gigs for years now and they go trough some severe conditions but has NEVER failed. I guess that this new series just as good. It is robust and i think very reliable. I would always gig with it without backup.
Marshall company is great and strong. I bought mine new and never had any problem but i called my dealer regarding one small issue and they were ready to make an amp exchange ASAP. Marshall has strong connections and dealers and it is very famous brand. Almost every amp technician that you can find knows to work with Marshall.
I`ve been playing for 9 years now, I have played over 40gigs and owned mainly strat-type guitars and some explorer copies. I use some pedals mostly the basics> wah, drive, delay some chorus etc. Playing mainly blues, funk, jazz, rock, progressive rock, little bit of heavy also. If it were stolen or lost i would get another because i NEED IT FOR GIGS. I love that Marshall concrete and saturated distortion and for the money it`s WORTH IT believe me. WELL beyond the products in its price range.
REVIEWED BY IVAN MILENKOVIC