Marshall Mode Four
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MGR/Ace 10/18/2004

Marshall Mode Four : MGR/Ace's user review

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How Purchased: (1)New 2003 and (1)New 2004 model.
Cost: 1199.00 a piece.

Where: A little store in Ft. Worth, Tx

Why I purchased: Conducted solid bench test and research for MY sound. Compared sound to other manufactures/models and decided on 2 Marshall MF heads for my rig.

So far, both heads prove to be solid performers. I'm a metal musician (lead gutitar player 14 year vet). The MF gets its best reviews for good cleans and bottom end for detuned axes. However, my Gibson Vs and RR1s cut through nice and clear with standard tuning as well. (My bass player and drummer love me for it)! Dialing in MY tone took a little work but I was successful at achieving the "singing tone" along with the feedback and saturation I deperately depend on. Ah yes, feedback! Achieiving and controlling it has never been sweeter! (As we all know, pickups have a lot to do with it too).

Yes, I'll agree that the MF is a little weak and thin to some degree but all hybrids are. Also, the MF sounds DARKER than say the TSL/DSL/2203s. That's because its a Marshall hybrid (Solid State) and the head/cab combinations i.e., MF400 A/B

Anyway, I like this particular hybrid because it is simple, explosive and to the point. I prefer not having to deal with the expense and care of hotroding/biasing/tube matching of say a JCM 800 etc.. However, to each his own. Actually, I owe a lot to the aforementioned Marshalls. They set the stage and were the spring board to the sound I have now! With a little tweaking, I have the tube sound through the MF.
The first stage to achieving MY tone is a solid performing graphic EQ run through the effects loop. Talk about boosting signals and tone shaping! The MF loves it! Thats only the first stage though and newer guitarist will have to dig in and find THEIR sound like us veterans.
Good luck!

I bought two of em, so that should sum up how I feel about this particular hybrid.

The overall contruction of the Marshall Mode Four is highly comparable to most of the big boys in the Marshall line up. Solid as a rock!

The cooling fans in both heads needed extra care by adding a little machine oil to reduce friction hum. **Always take time to perform minor maintenance checks on your gear.**

Bottom line: I'm a personal fan of the British made Marshall, so I'm a little biased. If it weren't Jim...
Anyway, both hybrids are a powerful selection to MY inventory and fit my taste well. When I step off stage at the end of a gig, I'm told my sound is "awesome." It makes me feel freakin good to hear that! Ultimately, I'm glad that I selected something from the Marshall family that pleases my taste and encourages me to play!

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com