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drkorey 04/08/2011

Fryette Amplification PittBull Hundred/CL : drkorey's user review

""It is OK for a rock amp""
3

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I am unsure of what year the 100 CL I owned was; it was an older model - most likely late 90's-early 2000's. Four EL-34 tubes can push it to 100 watts.

Features include: 2 channels, each with independent volume, pre-gain, high gain (gain stacking) switch, 3 band EQ, switchable mid boost/cut, switchable gain boost, and switchable "edge" (high frequency gain); master volume, presence, depth, and multi-band EQ controls; half power (50w) mode; effects loop with high/low level switch and series/parallel switch, mix/level control; switchable between class A and class A/B operation; 2x speaker outs with impedance selector; line out; power amp mute; foot-switchable channels, boost, effects loop and EQ (the latter is channel assignable, too).


UTILIZATION

The 100 CL has quite a few sound shaping features (see above) but they are mostly designed to produce varying degrees of overdrive and distortion, and is well designed in this regard.

It is fairly easy to get a good "dry" rock and clean sound out of this amp with minimal tweaking. I bought the amp used and the manual was available for download at the Fryette user’s forum but it is very basic and just tells you about the features of the amp. Sample settings are not really needed with this amp -it is fairly straight forward.

This amp may be hard for some players to play. It is a dry type of OD and will not hide mistakes and will make you play with cleaner and better technique, which isn't a bad thing.


SOUNDS

It should be noted that this amplifier actually has two differently voiced gain channels (green and red) and, while clean-ish tones can be coaxed from either of them, it is not designed to provide you with lush, sparkling cleans. I set up the amp to have the green channel as the clean and red as the OD/distortion channel. I thought it did a better than ok job with the cleans and worked well for me in that regard, better than some other amps I have owned.

I found the OD/distortion from this amp lacking saturation and not very inspiring to play. The tone I was looking to achieve was Jerry Cantrell's AIC Facelift tone. I found the 100CL unable to get the same amount of saturation (and much wasn't needed to begin with). In fact, I think a Marshall JCM 800 is more saturated and "juicy" compared to this amp. A good example of this amps sound is on Danzig's self titled "1/2 skull" cod. Just a very dry/clean tone. If that is what I was looking for than the amp would be rated higher.
I used quite a few guitars with this amp, including: ESP KH-II, Gibson Goth and regular V's, ESP M-II and a PRS standard.
I didn't experiment too much with boost pedals. I wanted it to get the sound I was after without having to use an external boost.

I also preferred the amp's extra 5 band EQ switched off. When it was engaged it seemed to take away from the sound.



OVERALL OPINION

I liked the footswitch and the amps features the most. The footswitch with this is great - has Channel, Boost, Fx Loop and EQ switches ( which you can assign to Red or Green - or both ).
With the foot-switchable boost and EQ, you can access a wide range of tones from light overdrive through to a mid-boosted solo tone in the course of a song.

Overall, I found the amp to be a disappointment and unable to achieve the sound I was looking for.
I was unable to try it before I bought it and went on the reviews of others.
For the money, there are much better options these days and knowing what I know now, I would not have purchased this amp, even though during resale, I broke about even.
I think there have been revisions to this amp over the years and they may sound better now. Definitely try one before you buy!