Marshall 8040 ValveState 40V
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Marshall 8040 ValveState 40V

8040 ValveState 40V, Hybrid Combo Guitar Amp from Marshall in the ValveState I series.

Gloups21 05/19/2014

Marshall 8040 ValveState 40V : Gloups21's user review

«  Great little amp »

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Hybrid with one 12AX7 for a bit more warmth
1 input => 2 channels + effects loop
Output power between 35 and 40 watts
Lots of settings, but it has a stack tone that demands to be modified.

UTILIZATION

Easy to dial in. It's a pretty versatile amp in terms of sound.
Here are some tips for people who like to mess with the electronics:
Check the solder joints and change the chemicals because the quality decreases with age. The easiest mod to rediscover the amp is to replace the TL072 (OP amp) with a 5532 ($1 per piece): The sound turns clearer, much more detailed and with more breadth.
Replace the ceramic capacitors with polypropylene for the tone controls and, especially, don't heat the PCB like a madman because Marshall used a somewhat cheap build.
After all that you end up with a very brilliant clean channel and a dynamic distortion.
NB: Change the original 12AX7, which isn't the best; a 12AU7 does a pretty good job, too. Also change the reverb link capacitor, it isn't great.

SOUNDS

It's very good for country, rock, jazz, blues.
It's an amp I lend a lot, and I can only say that it has always come back safe, despite the age and the power amp being solid-state.
Personally, I don't think it's that good for metal and its 40W aren't enough.
The speaker quality is not so bad compared to other amps at the same price point.
I like the clean sound but not so much the distortion (although that's very subjective).
Also note that the reverb isn't bad at all.

OVERALL OPINION

I've used it for over 10 years.
What I like best is that it's easy to use, lightweight and has a nice look.
What I like least are the pots, which are really lousy and need to be replaced regularly (3 times in 10 years).
Back then I didn't test many other amps. I bought this one secondhand.
If I had to, I'd buy it again but I would also make the changes earlier.