Budda Superdrive 45 Combo Guitar Amp – Aggressive Cutting and Loud
With a pair of KT66 output tubes, The Superdrive
45 harks back to the Marshalls of the mid 1960’s,
but with a feature set that’s a notch or two
above vintage minimalism. The Drive and Rhythm channels
share a common set of tone controls, and a single
Master knob sets the overall loudness for both channels.
There is a pull function on the mid control –
which reshapes the midrange contour for more aggressive
tones – and the Rhythm knob doubles as Bright
switch when pulled. Channels are selected via footswitch
or by toggling the Master in or out, and a switch
on the back panel lets you choose between tubes
and solid-state rectifiers.
The Superdrive 45 delivers bright, cutting clean
tones until the Rhythm knob is turned up past the
half way mark and the grind starts coming on. From
here it just gets thicker and meaner sounding as
you turn up. Perhaps due to the muscular KT66s,
these tones pack a formidable edge, even with humbuckers,
and the headroom is unreal – you can pound
the snot out of your guitar without incurring ant
mushiness or note smearing. This amp is fiercely
loud too and the Master is essential for keeping
the levels from becoming downright painful.
The Drive channel offers the same tough response,
but with lots more distortion. With the Drive knob
set to maximum you get heavy-duty sustain and saturation,
and the cut, definition, and transient attack is
almost scary. Even on speedy hammered runs, notes
sound ultra crisp and articulate, yet the thick
harmonics easily pour out as you dig into the string.
I didn’t notice any dynamic or tonal differences
when switching between rectifiers – the Superdrive
45 sounded just as loud and tight either way.