The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search Reviews   Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Fender Mustang III

Fender Mustang III

4.5 4.5 out of 5, based on 1 Review

Fender Mustang III Guitar Amplifier


9th November 2013

Fender Mustang III by 23onibaba

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.5

So.... as I frequently like to comb through the reviews here on "gearslutz" to pass my long and short days, I was suprised to see no reviews of any of the Fender Mustang series amplifiers...... So..... I thought I should write one myself!!! I just realised as I write this review that there is now a MK II version but my review is of the original.

Last year I needed to buy an amplifier to play some gigs with as I had sold every amp I ever had..... I was, I guess, extremely spoilt in my life after playing in a band where the extremely rich singer purchased a custom made Matchless amp for me to use...... been to lots of studios with top of the line amplifiers and generally tried out and used a large number of expensive models from friends and such...Wow......those last few sentences make me appear like a right arrogant self-important idiot who knows everything about amps.....I don't.....but I just thought I'd throw in some background....I still am, however, an idiot!

So.... I was extremely sceptical when I saw an advert in my local paper for a second-hand Fender mustang III amp on sale for 120 quid!.......it seemed absolutely ridiculous. The first thoughts that ran through my head after some internet research was......errrr.....NO TUBES???? AN LCD SCREEN??? USB???? Digital modelling???.......what am i buying?? a phone, computer or an amp?

In desperate need of an amp, I went over and tried it out.........The guy selling it had his recording room in a tiled "bathroom" like room. Possibly one of the worst sounding rooms to record or play in, unless thats what you're after but I was shocked.... It sounded like an amp! Solid state amps sort of sound like an amp but kind of horrible unless you've managed to find one that doesn't....... but this thing... despite the awful room.....sounded like an amp with some power.... I bought it.....120 quid....why not??..... I lifted it up to take out........LIGHT AS A FEATHER!..... I was used to struggling with heavy amps all my youth....That also shocked me......

The next day I took it over to my friend's studio...... I wanted to compare it to his nice fender, vox , marshall and other assortment of boutique amplifiers....I noticed its shortcomings in comparison......of course..... but did it sound 2000 pounds less expensive?......NO......A resounding NO..........But yeah.....his fender deluxe sounded better.....felt better.....screamed better....... but my emulation of it sounded cool.....really cool. and hey....my amp cut through and everyone there was mightily impressed!

Using this amp for a while now I have to say a few things that annoy me.....the USB thing is useless.... I have had constant problems with this aspect so I just ignore it......It doesn't work for me....I've tried many ways of working round it but it just doesn't work.....maybe it will for you.... the "Fender Fuse" software seems a bit gimmicky to me.... really don't bother buying it for that....that's my opinion anyway

The output is just a stereo jack.....I see MKII has proper line outs....that makes me want it.....but i don't really need it to be honest....

It has 100 presets....literally I think most of them sound awful.....there are about 5-10 usable ones....the rest just sound weird.... You're better off making your own sounds... and it's pretty basic to understand how to program it.... I generally choose a basic fender amp then just add effects like delay and reverb myself. That works best for me.

....and my last gripe with it is that although its advertised as a practice amp....it's way too loud to use at home..... one of the smaller models are probably more practical and appropriate.

Fender I think are really onto a winner here.... Vox's modelling amps are up there too but after comparison I preferred this.... It's so affordable in comparison to traditional amps it's ridiculous and I'm not sure you're missing out on all that much....Hey I'd love to get a custom Matchless amp back.....but I don't have a few grand spare...... It scares me how real this thing sounds.... purists will certainly scoff..... fair enough....just try it out first! you might be surprised.... audio samples in recording may be misleading but here's a link to a song where all the guitars recorded are using my mustang's stereo jack output....shameful I know but it somehow works! Hope you enjoy yours as much as I have mine!

https://soundcloud.com/vanilla-vanil...p-of-the-world

 
  • Gear Database

  • By Gearbot
Loading mentioned products ... Fender Mustang III
Review Tools
Search this Review
Search this Review:

Advanced Search