I'm looking for a basement amp that is good for metal. I didn't even know modeling technology existed until last week (as mentioned in my other thread, I've been out of the guitar scene for 10 years).
Most of the reviews I've read for these types of amps either a) sound like they're written by middle schoolers who jizz their pants at a preset by their favorite screamo band or b) old school jazz guys who only play Fender tube amps. I can't trust either of those types of people.
Here is a list of the amps I've tried so far, and my comments. Please feel free to add your own:
Live 6 Spider IV 75 - I think some of the distortion effects sound good. I don't really care about 235 or so of the 250 "custom song" presets, but seriously 10 or 15 of them were pretty cool. Good clean channel. Good delay.
Vox Valvetronix VT40+ - A tube amp! Truth be told, I want to like this amp the most, but I have read 22+ page threads about the "hiss" it makes while notes are being played and it seems to be a very common problem without a resolution(?). Some people have exchanged the amp 3 or 4 times before finding one that doesn't have this issue. Good distortions, good clean settings, models 33 amps and 33 songs, including some Metallica and Vai.
Peavey Vypyr - I messed around with this one the other day at the store and didn't really like it. The controls weren't very intuitive and it didn't seem to offer anything that the Line 6 or Vox didn't.
Fender Mustang III - I've never been a fan of Fenders (guitars or amps), and while they are fantastic for certain styles of music, I play metal 90% of the time and they just don't cut it. This amp has some good effects, but I didn't like it as much as the Vox or Line 6.
There seems to be a stereotype on most of the forums I've seen that the Line 6 amps are only used by middle schoolers and that serious guitarists won't be happy with them after the first week when the novelty wears off.
I trust the opinion of this forum since it is called metalguitarist.org. What do you guys think? I'm not gigging with it, I just want to sound good in my basement/bedroom while I (try to) play metal (Metallica, Stratovarius, Sonata Arctica, Vai, Nightwish type stuff, not nu-metal or Linkin Park type stuff).
Budget is $300 or less.
honestly, i've used cheap little modeling amps for quite a while in my room for practicing. who cares what they really sound like; they are for bedroom level playing, and most can be had under $100 (the vypyr 15, and the spider 15 anyway).
if its something you're going to want to have for quite some time and grow into, you may want to think about something with a bit more versatility in the long run, but really, they are just fine for what they are.
they do have a bad rap on forums, but i think the guys who complain about them just do it because its "cool" to complain about line 6. out of what you've listed, i think you'll get the best deal of of the spider or the vox