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Author Topic: VOX Valvetronix VTX150 Review  (Read 2829 times)

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Online greenlion

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VOX Valvetronix VTX150 Review
« on: November 30, 2013, 02:02:49 pm »
I finally broke down and bought one of the new Valvetronix Pro amps from VOX. I had one of the older Blue Face AD60VTX amps for years and really liked it, and I have one of the newish VT40+ models that I am not thrilled with.

Here's my take on the Pro, and I may add some more since I've only played it for a day:

The amp is VERY light. With that neo magnet in there, it feels lighter than the smaller VT20+ models. It has a much classier looking grill cloth and tolex covering. the handle feels like faux leather. It feels nice and looks sturdy enough. Would it stand up to being dragged to 200 gigs in a year. I dunno.... I don't plan on beating mine up.

The layout is almost identical to the VT+ models. You have the regular led-lit green/orange/red amp models on the dial, but then there is another layer of blue amp models that are new.

I am not going to try and break down each amp model, but I will sum up.

Overall, the amp has a very organic feel to it. Is it as 3 dimensional as a really good tube amp? No. Does the EL84 tube make a huge difference? I don't know. It definitely gives the older Blue face models a run for their money tone-wise and is in a whole other league of versatility. It has a more organic tube feel than any other modeler I have played, and feels/sounds more natural than a few tube amps I have owned.

There is an amazing pallet of clean amp models and they all sound worlds better than the models on the VT+ amps. This amp is definitely NOT the regular VT+ models in a fancy dress. They sound more organic/woody and have a more natural feel. There is also a wonderful selection of amps that do the "just on the verge of breakup" thing well. The EQ tone controls have a real effect on the character of the models.

The Vox Ac15 and AC30 models are well done, but they have never been favorites of mine. At first, I was a little disappointed in the Marshall models, but they sound much better cranked a bit. (haven't been able to play loud due to thanksgiving guests) There are several models on this amp that are in JCM800 and Plexi territory, which are still my favorite rock amps of all time. It also has a few models designed specifically for drop tunning and 7 string guitars. They don't sound bad with a regular 6-string in standard though. There are a few models that I don't like, but then if you made a list of 44 anythings, there would be some I didn't like. They aren't Line-6 insane channel bad, just not my thing.

The effects are very useable and I like the addition of 4 overdrive/distortion pedals and separate reverb. I haven't spent much time really digging into the effects or the effect preset and song preset channels. I've mainly used the 3 reverb types, echo delay, and the overdrives.  I like all of those.

Once again, I would say that VOX is on the top of the tone list when it comes to modelers. I have always liked having the controls layed-out on the amp physically instead of scrolling through digital menus.

Is the pice a little steep at 800 dollars? Probably, but several online retailers have been blowing them out for $500, which is why I bought this one. I feel like it is well worth that price.

Online greenlion

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Re: VOX Valvetronix VTX150 Review
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2017, 07:28:16 pm »
As a follow-up, I have changed my mind after spending a lot more time with the amp. The amp soon developed a problem with the knob that changes stomp box models. It became gritty and hard to turn, and at the same time it sounds like the wah is bleeding through and adding itself to the other effects even when it is not chosen. While taking it apart trying to clean and inspect the pot, I found the interior build quality to be VERY poor. There is a chunk of wood with a rubber stopper hot-glued to the top of it holding the power tube in place. I don't mean a shaped, sawn, squared piece of wood, but a amorphous chunk of wood. The chassis is flimsy, and the entire cabinet feels cheap. Vox definitely went for quantity of effects and models over quality here, and it is way overpriced for the build quality. It is no surprise that they did not stay in production long. The Fender Mustang III I bought later is a much better amp overall. If Vox didn't want to make an actual amp, they should have made another effects box like the older Tone Lab, and let us buy a cabinet for it.

Offline jageya

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Re: VOX Valvetronix VTX150 Review
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2018, 07:16:48 pm »
I collect these amps and the older blue ad120/60 vtx amps- ad`120vh as well.
Every company will cut corners somehow- the new katana cabinets are mdf and cheaply made as well yet that amp actually sounds really good.

The older vox vtx amps were on the right track to tone.The whole valve reactor concept actually worked and worked well to emulate tube feel and tones. The speakers in the vtx amps are amazing speakers to me( i also collect those). Vox has gone downhill after these to cheap toylike amps. the tonelab se i have is a beast and sounds great still.

You may have gotten a lemon who knows. All 3 i own have been flawless and sound killer. I prefer these to newer model amps on the market from vox or line 6 or peavey or even fender.The new gt100 fender is crap as are the marshal code amps.

Dont know why vox dumbed everything down after the vtx amps but my guess is they were sounding"too good" and needed to be curbed to keep the vox ac amps selling. In the modeling amps now i have cybertwin se 2-12 combo( awesome amp and killer tones and very good effects)- the vtx amps-(very organic and very tubelike to me with basic effects that are passible but not amazing)- blackstar id260 stereo 2-12 combo( killer tones and sweet stereo effects) the tvp really does work.
Line6 spidervalve mk2 2-12 combo( the tube power section is amazing-effetcs are good and the preamps are decent-well made amp)
Katana artist- one of the better 2018 ss somewhat modeling amps to come along(had the k100 combo but sold locally to get the artist)-effects are very good and tones are just right.


I am sorry the build of the vtx you have isnt great but when i tore mine down they all were pretty well made inside and sturdy. I like the very simple layouts of the vtx amps and the tuner./effects loop/speaker out and as you said the grill look.

Offline jageya

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Re: VOX Valvetronix VTX150 Review
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2018, 07:22:29 pm »
also these are rare to find much and didnt sell well because they were not really released well in the usa.Canada had a bunch and the pricepoint was just too high overall on the amp. The next step was the blackdiamond which was shown at a namm as a prototype 10 yrs ago or so but never was produced because the pricepoint was too high to justify making it. So they say. I think it sounded too good and would have messed up tube amp sales because many people at that time were going to modeling. Remember the line 6 vetta 2 amps? 3k a pop....they sold but not many and now you see them around for $200-400.00. They had alot going on and still sound good but were prone to screen issues and getting parts is impossible now.The vox vtx amps are easier to work on and less prone to issues.

https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/vox-launches-new-black-diamond-amplifier-1
« Last Edit: March 19, 2018, 07:25:51 pm by jageya »