« British Rock Classic »Published on 08/31/12 at 18:01
The amp is very easy to dial in and sounds crystal clear even at loud volumes. Surprising amount of versatility in both channels. I felt the amp outperformed the rockerverb mkii I tested in terms of sound quality, but reverb would be greatly welcomed here to compliment the cleans in the Ad30. As far as the lack of an effects loop is concerned, I found the Ad30 worked very well with pedals out front and didn't mangle time based effects too much. The build quality is very solid and the amp help up in a gigging environment for months. Bravo to Orange.
The clean sounds are very warm and full bodied. Notes have a very "round" feeling to them on both channels. Rolling back the gain on the second channel gives you a perfect impersonation of bands such as The Darkness, and Led Zeppelin. Winding up the gain brings you very well into the modern realm. I could very easily cop the tones from Coheed and Cambria's --'Gravemakers and Gunslingers'. Pushing the gain past 3 o' clock on the dial can get you Mastodon rhythm sounds.
The Orange Ad30 is the kind of amp you really enjoy to play through. It sounds so reminiscent of many recorded tones without having to tweak for hours or add any additional pieces--very inspiring in this regard. I do feel, however, that the feature set of the AD30 does not justify the going list price of $1659. If you are willing to compromise features, the amp can be purchased for a typical sum between $8-1200 on the secondhand market.