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Sound Quality

Well, it's now probably classed as "vintage", which is a kind way of saying "obsolete". I think it's great for plugging into solid-state cheap amps. It's very quiet with solid state and lets you explore lots of different sounds. I'd say "Sound" rather than "Tone" because the distortions aren't all that good. These days I play guitar plugged directly into a Fender HRD (see review) and it's put me right off using ANY effects, I much prefer the tone of the Amp. Basically, it doesn't matter what the hell guitar you put through this, they all sound the same! These days I would not use it in a gig, but I used to, and it worked well enough. For clean sounds you can get some real other-worldy tweets and swirls. Sonic equivelant of tripping. There are a couple of usable presets for Heavy Metal in bank two. More crunch than Extra Crunchy peanut butter. Also, can provide a really, and I mean really beautiful lead tone when you bung in enough delay. For the money these things go for now, it's worth buying just for the delay. Mind you, I wouldn't put it into an all-valve (Tube) amp, cos it fucks up the tone. Well actually, it replaces the amp's tone with it's own. All effects do that, so I'm not bashing the ME5, I just no-longer like my tone processed. But hell, it's still FUN to use in the bedroom.

Reliability/Durability

Very reliable, mine's been all over Europe, each pedal must have been stomped on thousands of times. Only problem was that the input jack went bye-bye. Solution? Wire it up to the jack next to it! I've forgotten what it's for, but was something I never used anyway.

General Comments

I bought this in 1993 and it no longer falls into what I'd call a "professional" piece of kit, but second hand I'd suggest buying it if you have a crap amp or are starting out. When you're starting, effects give you hope, just don't get too dependant on them like I did! I play all kinds from ballads to Blues to Rock. It will never match the tone of a valve amp, but neither do the ultra expensive modelling amps of today. I know, I've tried them and laughed. Not suitable for blues, very difficult to get any smoothness out of this without delay. And you don't want delay if your playing the blues!

As an aside, I've found a new use for it. My band practises in the drummers cellar and I don't have a lot of gear. I'm also lead vocalist, but we don't have a PA. So, I plug the mike into the ME5, use the Comp/Sustain, noise gate and reverb and whack that into a little 15 watt amp. Nothing brilliant, but I can be heard over the guitar, Drum and Bass! Not recommended for gigging in a rock band, buy a decent amp for the overdrive, but well worth experimenting with if you see one cheap!




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