The amount of new interesting amps was a little low this year, or maybe I missed some. There were some real treats though so here’s my thoughts on a couple of them.
Elmwood had their new Modena20 on display. Last year it was still a prototype but now it’s in production. You get the same layout as the Modena60/90 but this one is loaded with KT66s and is voice differently. I own a Modena60 so I was really curious about this one. And it did not disappoint. The clean channel has a really nice chime and when pushed gets into that dirty Fender territory, awesome for bluesier stuff. The boosted clean on the Modena60 is an amazing sound and I think the Modena20 actually does it even better. This is so responsive and big sounding and it loves pedals. The gain channel doesn’t have as much gain on tap as the M60/90 but there’s still plenty for some serious rocking out. Overall, the M20 is voiced a bit more vintage/rootsy sounding and I loved it.
I finally got to play the Bogner GoldFinger, sadly only at low volumes but I really liked what I heard. This amp has a real nice set of features and is more oldschool sounding than the other amps in the Bogner catalog. It’s very responsive to your playing and different guitars!
My buddies from MarkL had their Subzero amps ready to rock at the Loopersparadise booth. There are 100w and 60w versions loaded with either EL34s or 6L6s. I got to play different versions and wow, I absolutely love these amps. The clean channel is very simple but effective, it sounds really good. The gain channels share the EQ but their voicing is different so this isn’t an issue. More importantly, both the crunch and lead channels sound absolutely FAT. Even with the gain WAY to high, it’s responsive to playing dynamics and rolling off the volume on the guitar gets you all shades of killer tones.
Finally, I played the latest in Egnater’s Tweaker range, the 88. I really dig those amps and they offer amazing value for money. The Tweaker88 is no different, it just packs more punch and headroom. You got to applaud Bruce Egnater for bringing his stellar tones in affordable packages. Check them out!!