Review: Yamaha THR10X Metal Amp and Interface

Rich distortion and plenty of it, the THR10X packs a punch   16-Oct-13


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Review by Richard Beech

The Yamaha THR10X packs into a tiny little box the level of distortion you might expect from a 100-watt Diesel amp, a Mesa Boogie Rectifier or a Marshall Super Lead.

It's impressive, especially when you crank the volume on the THR10X - it can achieve relatively high volumes, nowhere near as high as the amps it aims to emulate, but still more than you would expect from a 10 watt digital amp.

Instead of taking the signature sound of these classic high-gain amplifiers, and simply aiming to copy them, the Yamaha THR10X actually goes below face value and aims to emulate the way in which these amps react to changes in EQ, gain and volume.

So when you're in the brown sound mode on the THR10X, and you twist the gain knob, it should react in a similar way to a Marshall Super Lead.

These are high quality sounds, I managed to trick a few people into believing it was a tube amplifier, especially when playing people audio recordings of the amp.

But despite the high quality, the on-board sounds should be judged on their own merit rather than in comparison to the tones they are aiming to emulate.

The approximations of Mesa, Peavey, Diesel and Marshall are good, but from such a small amp with small speakers, and at lower volumes, it's hard to capture the 'feel' of these amps.

You can hear some of the characterstics of amps such as the 5150 shining through on certain settings, but really, if you throw those comparisons out the window then this is a tonally impressive high quality, high-gain amplifier which is versatile and perfect for practicing, recording, and even for jamming with others.

If you are a metal guitarist, then you'll have as much gain as you'll ever need, and importantly you can get this gain at low volumes and also record high gain at low volumes without unwanted feedback.

The THR10X interfaces with your computer and comes bundled with Cubase, which makes it a good option for recording riffs and ideas to click, and then building on them.

Overall, it's a fun amp, you won't pay more than £266/$299 for it, and the distortion tones are manageable, rich and sound like tube-generated tones.

If we can have another output added to the amplifier which would output to a mixing desk without killing the signal to the amplifier's speakers, then it would be even better value for money.

But you can't always get what you want!

 

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