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Gem 2G Customer Reviews


What Guitarists Are Saying About Their Gems...

"I've been playing your amp for hours.  What impresses me most is how many different tones I can get out of it.  All of the controls are very effective and even the tone control on my guitars have more effect than they have had on other amps I was using -- a borrowed Traynor YCV and circa 1970 Fender Champ.

Got to go now--I have to order a pizza.  I was going to go grocery shopping this afternoon, but once I started playing the amp, I couldn't tear myself away to do something as boring as shopping.

I have to say you nailed it on the head with your slogan: "Virtuoso Tone w/o the Prima Donna Price"!"

- Rob initial comments on his Gem 2G and 1x10CB

"I just wanted to let you know that I'm loving the Gem! I just can't believe the tone coming out of this little beast.

I love the power scaling, it stays articulate even at 0.4 watts. The variety of tones you get out of those knobs is suprising to say the least. It's the perfect amp for me and it sounds huge or wisper quiet (I can play it cranked next to my 3 month old!).

I have it running through an old oversized Garnet 2x12 with a celestion gold and g12h30 25th anniversary and it's a perfect match with the Gem in my opinion.

Thanks for the great service, this was by far my best online shopping experience to date and I've had many. Keep up the good work, you make us Canadians look good :)"

- From Steven about his Gem 2G

 "Love my Gem!  Great for recording and at times loud enough for live too.  Way better overall than my VHT Special 6!  Thank you..."

- From Neil about his Gem 2G

 "I've had these amps for a while now and am loving both of them.  I've had no opportunity to try the HS-18 in a gig setting but it's fabulous.  I've been using the Gem for every day fooling around and in my studio.  It's as close to perfect for in-house playing as I've ever encountered.  I'll tell everyone who wants to know."

- From Tom about his Gem 2G and Heatseeker HS-18

 "Well, I have had your cab and amp for a week now, and I still can't keep away from it when I'm at home.

A bit of background: I'm playing a Guild Starfire IV with Seymour Duncan Antiquity Humbuckers and a Heritage 575 with the same pups. I am also playing a 1956 Gibson ES-125 with a P90.

No matter what I plug in, I'm getting tones I have never heard before -- musical tones with harmonics and shimmering highs, and more low bass than I thought I would get with 4 watts.

With the humbuckers, I have the most fun diming all the amp controls and just using the vol. and tone on the guitars. With the P90, strangely enough, what works best is diming all the guitar controls and playing with the gain, vol., and hot/melt, 4w/1/4w controls on the amp.

But no matter which guitar I'm using, this amp and speaker combination is fun, musical and just plain captivating. I'm amazed at the sweet sounds I can get. And what a variety of sounds! Compared to the previous amps I was using (which are now gathering dust) I can make it sound like I'm playing a completely different guitar with just some tweaking of the knobs and buttons. No matter what sound I'm getting, though, I can then play with the amp through my guitar by varying my attack and pick angle and the amp responds like nothing I've ever played through before.

The CB ported speaker cabinet with the 10'' speaker you recommended is just ideal for the music I play -- jazz and blues. At the volume level I play at -- I'm in a townhouse and I want to stay on good terms with my neighbours -- I can get a hint of very tasteful tube distortion when I need it, yet the head room lets me get full, pure rich notes on quieter passages. The 10" speaker is perfect for this application. It is not so stiff that 4 watts cannot sufficiently drive it, yet it is rigid enough that the cone is not flapping and adding its own sound/noise.

I'm one of those types that often has second thoughts after I've bought something. In this case, though, it took me 10 minutes of playing to affirm I had made the right choice. Every minute of playing after that has just reinforced my conviction that this is one jewel of an amp that is perfect for home playing.

I may sound like I'm raving, but I am so pleased with this amp and speaker combination that I can't stop telling people about it -- except when I'm at home, and then just try prying a guitar out of my hands!

Take care, and thanks for the great product.

- Rob's full review after a week playing his Gem 2G and 1x10 CB

 "Got about 30 hours on my Gem (it's rekindled my desire to play).  Best little amp EVER."

- Rob, Saskatchewan (see his full review below)

 "My Gem is one sexy little box and overflows with juicy tube tone.

I like to dime the Gem and practice feedback; it's great for that.  At lower volumes it still has a sweet, singing sustain with sparkle and clarity.

The Gem is "tone on the run" for those last minute studio sessions.  Just grab a small cabinet, throw them both in the car, and you're there!  Engineers will love the Gem; it's so simple, yet so versatile.

The Gem is more than just a practice amp.  You can get many small amps that are cheaper, but they won't sound like this!"

- Steve Gunner, Creedence Clearwater Revisited - Mack Endorsing Artist

 "I just got my GEM and a 10" cab [1x10 OB].  That combination is awesome... but, when I connected the GEM to my "Mack Stack" [2 - 1x12 CB speaker cabs] and ran it at 4 watts, full volume... I orga*#med... spectacular crunch... and when I opened up my sub-woofer also... holy sh*t!!  You got a winner here dude!"

- Mike, Alberta
With 4 watts and the pre set on series, I was shocked at how loud it is.  Miles of headroom and the tone is pure EL84: chimey and harmonically rich.   This is where solid state practice amps and amp sims come up short IMHO.   They can cop decent high gain tones, but can't do tube clean like this.  Awesome.  Riviera Paradise and the intro to Wind Cries Mary were spectacular and comparable to my Heatseeker HS-18..4 watts/series.  Cleans were still nice.  Cranking the gain pushed my Tele into that blues tone sweet spot where you're right on the edge and can really control your sound with your pick attack.  Love that.4 watts/parallel.  The cleans were still nice, with lots of space.  Cranking the gain would still put me nicely into bluesland..4 watts/parallel.  I was surprised by how much headroom I still had.  I could get more tubey OD than on the other settings (especially when I switched the Tele for a Les Paul).  I like the way I can manipulate the sound with pick attack and little changes with the guitar's volume.

I hit the Gem with a couple of pedals (Blues Driver and DS) and loved the result.  I could get really nice tube OD tone at conversational volumes.  This is the other area where solid state amps suck.  When you hit 'em with pedals the results tend to be brittle and ugly.  Not so with the Gem.   The ability to get those sweet tube tones at low volumes is the Gem's forte.

Some other observations.  The Gem is small, but it doesn't sound that way.  It sounds and reacts differently thru different cabs.  Thru a 12" Weber alnico Silver Bell, it was chimey and open sounding.  Very Rock and Roll thru a Celestion Greenback.  Big and loud thru a Marshall 4x12 (and one of the funniest-looking setups I've seen).  Used it mostly thru the first Mack cab [
1x12 CB] I got from you as it's one of my favs.

The Gem also sounds different depending on the guitars you play.  I was surprised that I liked the Gem best with my 52RI Tele.  I usually like Strats the most, but the Tele with the Gem had this amazing, primal pure tone.  You can hear every nuance (which is not a good thing with players of my calibre). Talk about a responsive amp."
- Rob, Saskatchewan"The amp showed up today! Plugged it in and started playing. Sounds really sweet!  Just what I wanted.  I'm very proud to own this Mack Gem."  - Joel, Guam  "

This amp does not need an introduction.  Just listen to the damn thing(!) and you will understand why I play it, in the studio and on stage."- Doron Zor, Mack Endorsing Artist"
I just picked up my Gem today.  I haven't had a chance to plug it in yet, but it looks fantastic!  While at Avenue Guitars, I decided to get the cab for it as well.  I also bought a Heatseeker 18.  I've got one of each of your models now.  Anyway, thanks for all your help.  Your amps are the best."- Akil, Alberta"
I plugged my Gem in briefly yesterday and again today for a longer session and I am very happy to have it.  It's got a personality much bigger than its size!  I love the tones I'm hearing.  The clean tone is very full and warm with great sensitivity.  The crunch sound is happening, too, and I plan on using pedals to augment all of the useful tones already coming from the amp.  I think you really hit yourgoal in designing an easy-to-use, great-sounding small amp."- Gary, California"
Just to let you know that I received the Gem today and it is awsome.  It was delivered at my workplace and we tested it right there (after work of course).  It is a great sounding amp and just what I was looking for.  Congratulations for offering such a great product and friendly service."- Antonio, Puerto Rico