Review: Marshall CODE 50:
For a long time, Marshall’s amp line up had a significant gap in regards to digital amp modeling and built in effects, accompanied by mobile and tablet application. These sections of the market have been heavily exploited by brands like Blackstar, Line 6 and Peavey to name a few. With Marshall dragging their feet behind, they have finally joined the party with the CODE amplifier range. The CODE combines all these features as mentioned above with a very affordable price tag compared to its rivals in the market. The CODE ranges from 25watt all the way up to 100watt and even includes a 100watt head.
Marshall Teamed up with Softube’s developers to produce accurate models of fourteen classic and modern Marshall pre-amps, eight Marshall cabs and four power amps. This includes 14 classic and modern Marshall pre-amps, 4 power amps, and 8 different verities of Marshall cabinets. The amp comes equipped with 24 effect types which includes compressors, reverbs, delays, distortion and overdrive pedals, phaser, flanger, wah, chorus and more.
Being very excited that the legendary Marshall has finally join the modeling amp party, I made sure I got my hands on one to try out and I must say it looks great, they really did a great job with the styling! It took me about 5 minutes of using the amp to understand how everything works without reading the manual and to be honest, all the instructions are written underneath the buttons. From the first patch I was hooked with the old Plexi to JCM800 overdriven presets and how well they are represented, even tweaking the patches was easy, one button does it all on this amp.
That being said, let’s get down to some key features… The app that’s available on both platform works like it should, didn’t find any issue, would like to have a feature where all your preset is on one page, so you could use it easier for live, but it’s still early days.
When I saw the playback function on the amp, I got excited and thought, this could be a great massive Bluetooth speaker when you want to play some music when your friends are over… Unfortunately, the speaker still sounds like you are playing music through a guitar amp.
Other than that, I would say this is the best amp so far in the line of modeling amps in that specific price bracket. I would really not mind owning one or playing shows with it, it’s definitely loud enough!
Sound Quality: 3/5
The factory presets are great and creating the sound in you head is really simple. I would say when I comes to gimmick amps, this is the best one. The low-end takes a bit of tweaking to take the mud away, but that’s Marshall hey…
Ease of use: 5/5
Really easy to understand, one knob controls it all.
Amp sounds great and you have enough to play around with, would have been better if they got the Bluetooth playback to sound better.
Bang for buck: 4/5
This amp has a great price tag and I will not complain taking out the money to buy one.
Great amp! I would highly recommend it to anyone from beginner to intermediate players. The amp sounds great, it makes you sound great and it’s loud enough for stage. So, it’s a no brainer.
Stephen du Plessis
Output wattage: 50w
No extension cabinet outputs, 1 x 3.5mm jack headphone out
Inputs: 1x instrument jack, 1x Aux In (3.5mm jack)
100 editable presets, bass, middle, treble, gain, volume, pre-FX, amplifier models, modulation effects, delay effects, reverb effects, power amplifier models, speaker cabinets, additional controls available via Marshall Gateway app for iOS and Android devices
Effects: 24 different built-in effects (5 simultaneously)
Effects loop: No
Speaker configuration: 1x12"
Speaker model: Custom (4Ω, 50w)
Unit impedance: 4Ω
Footswitch - PEDL-91010 or PEDL-91009 both sold separately
Cable - Detachable power cable included
Dimensions: (INCLUDING FEET AND HANDLE):
Weight: 13 kg / 29 lbs
Width: 530 mm / 20.9"
Height: 440 mm / 17.3"
Depth: 280 mm / 11"