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Mesa Dual Rectifier Roadster Head

 
Quality American made med/high gain head, with four channels; each with individual reverb, 100/50w, silicon/tube rectifier, loop on/off, and the usual 3 band EQ, presence gain and master controls and 3 different 'modes', each with their own sound; tube driven Accutronics reverb, and loads of useable sounds. This isn't just a dual rectifier amp, despite the name, it,...


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Sound Firstly, I use an 91 Ibanez JEM77FP with PAF Pros, an 07 Jackson RR1 with Mo'Joe and PAF Joe, ESP Eclipse II with JB and'59 and regularly use somebody's JEM7VWH with Evolutions. As you can tell I like a broad range of sounds, and the most noticeable thing about this amp is how it really puts a lot of emphasis on the guitar you're using, rather than producing one sound just with different levels of output. It's extremely sensitive to different pickups and woods like no amp I've ever heard and I really enjoy that quality. It does great rock and metal sounds, and I play a lot of leads which with all the options, I can make apropriate to any situation. That being said, setting this amp up for a big rhythm sound, Dual Rectifier territory, is easy. The key is understanding the controls - what each control does is affected by how the other controls are set. For example - channel 4 modern mode, diode rectifier, 100w, bold - if you turn the treble up to 2:30-3:00, the bass at about 10 o'clock and the mid around 9 on most amps, you expect a scoopy, very bright, in your face sound, but what you get with the roadster is a tight bottom end, and a nice crunch, not dissimilar to the Mark Series. rolling the presence back accounts for the top end, but also adds a subtle, musical compression to the sound. Having the gain at 12 o'clock is more than enough for your average rhythm, turning the gain up will add compression and after about 3 o'clock cause the sound to 'sag' in a typical Dual Rectifier way. Similarly turning the bass up will do the same if you want the sag effect with less gain. Rolling off the treble with take off the edge and fill the sound out more, allwing the bass and mid controls to come through the mix. The mid, which i always set last, is a sweet spot situation. Too much, and it'll overpower the bass and lose the fullness, too little and this amp will go '80s hair metal. I love it. Now turning the amp to tube rectifier, the amp gets subtle more 'brown' and those with a more sensitive ear will hear more harmonics making the sound much sweeter. Turning to 50w will fatten the md range and loosen the low end response further. Finally switching to spongy makes takes the edge off, adds a bit of compression and gives you another slight reduction in volume allowing you to get a cranked vintage 2CH Rectifier sound with absolute ease.

Now the clean channel. This isn't justa high gain monster like it's Dual and Triple rectifier cousins. The first two channels came out of a lonestar and sound huge, with great chimey cleans and loads of headroom that to be honest sold the amp to me. Tweed and Brit modes on channels 1 and 2 respectively are both great, crunchy go betweens and to be honest, most rock fans could live off the first two channels alone and never need anything else.

Now the modes: Clean is very clear and bright; fat is, well, fat. Tweed isn't as high gain as brit, and sound a buit like a cranked princeton, whereas brit is higher gain and more marshally - apparently it's even better with switchable EL34s. Raw on Channels 3 and four is where tweed leaves off; more gain, very nice crunchy rhythm sounds, but still not high gain - again, cranked princeton, with a bit more definition. Vintage is your first tru high gain mode, on channel 3 it's slightly tighter with a more responsive mid range, whereas channel 4 it can sound more scooped, I use this for rhythm. Finally, modern. Channel 3 modern is probably a bit pointless, because CH3 sounds great in vintage and modern just sounds like a booster pedal in front of it. Modern on channel 4 however is very special. The channel I was describing earlier, over channel 3 you get more bass, and more presense as well as more saturated gain levels. This is an awesome lead channel and the sheer diversity of this channel means I can do anything with it. A must try. This is also silent. I practised with some friends recently, had the amp running very loudly on a high gain channel and stopped playing, didn't turn down the volume of my guitar, and it was so quiet I forgot it was turned on; I was very impressed by this. Would recommend using with a Rectifer 412 or 212 though, haven't had as much success with other cabs.


Reliability Nearly two years old, gigged/practised loudly once a month not even changed a tube. Looks as good as the day I bought it and probably sounds better!


Liked about it Silent operation, amazing cleans and sheer versatility.
Particularly that there are so many sounds avaiable and they are all great, this is not a jack of all trades and master of none, this is just the master!


Didn't like Sometimes its sensitivity to different guitars means that the slightest change affects the sound, and adding new guitars can be frustrating to dial in a favourite sound. Though that being said, this could make any guitar sound good.


Overall satisfaction:
 
5.0

By Fun111
Mar 11, 2010
 
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