150W Amp Head Plus Cab
Imagine a juicy Granny Smith apple three foot tall that speaks. You'll at least have the colour of the Alligators about right. Apart from the distinctive green vinyl covering, two other factors make this 120w multi-purpose cab and head stand out from similar systems.
First, they're very compact, and second they're not sold through shops, but direct from the manufacturers in Middlesex to cut out the middleman and keep down the price.
To begin with both head and cab are remarkably light. I've known some 75w combos weigh in heavier than these two together. It's an integrated circuit amp, so of course that helps reduce the bulk. It measures 20¾ in long x 5½ in high x 10½ in deep, the cab is 21in x 26in x 10in, and both have black ABS plastic guards at each corner which lock together when the head's in place.
The cab is an unusual format. The two 10in Fanes with 1½in voice coils are set diagonally and are protected by steel grills. The unoccupied corners slope backwards and become bass ports. The rear of the cab is completely enclosed apart from a shelf at the top where you can store effects pedals, leads, the footswitch for the amp, etc — another example of thinking for the player.
Even the covers have been carefully considered. They're strong but loose, so you don't have an almighty job squeezing them over the wood and again there's a zip pocket at the side to carry more of those gig accessories... such as drink.
The head can deliver 150W into 4ohms, but the 8ohms cab is comfortable at 120W. The range includes 150W slaves and slave cabs, should deafness be required. Pre-amp and master volumes are nothing new in the search for controllable distortion though on the Alligator each has its own EQ — the initial gain has bass and treble, the master carries bass, low-mid, high-mid and treble.
A volume boost for extra overload can be brought in by a footswitch or a switch on the panel, there's only one input but the tidy back panel holds a send and return effects loop and a mixer/slave output. It's also the location for the mains switch, so all the nasty big volts are safe at the rear, and the front panel just has standby.
Overall standard of construction is excellent; ie, the knobs don't come off, all fuses are easily accessible, either the front or back panel comes free with four screws (and are in fact modular so a new one can be slotted into place) and nothing protrudes beyond the wood surround, so the danger of an accidental drop smashing half the controls is considerably reduced. Full marks for thought, design and application.
The sound is surprising. The bass ports give the Alligator more protection and strength in the lower frequencies than the size of the cab would leave you to believe. The Fanes are not quite so hot at handling the low-mid region and the cleanest results are by tweaking that area out on the master EQ.
For guitars in particular you suddenly find yourself with a mammoth spread of tone and it's quite a shock to discover yer old six string has much more in the rumble department than other amps revealed. Goes without saying that those areas are essential for bass guitar, but they're also a real bonus for keyboards, especially bass synths. £269