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Author Topic: Boss Katana series  (Read 16890 times)

Offline Hinfrance

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Boss Katana series
« on: January 28, 2017, 01:44:20 PM »
Well, it's like this. I'm selling an old camera and am thinking of investing in a new amplifier. I've got my eye on the Katana 100 2X12, but if I buy that I can't afford the 4 button footswitch. A bit less is the Mustang IV 2x12 which comes with a footswitch and all of the reports about it are really positive. It has the added benefits of being stereo and having balanced DI outs with ground lift. So I'm in a bit of a quandary.

So if it was your purchase decision and you had to choose, which one would you go for?



Offline Mick

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2017, 02:53:45 PM »
Howard, you got a shop local to you that might have those amps in stock?  I'd certainly like to try both options before purchasing, if possible.   There seems to be a few high power modelling amps released in the last few months, by the likes of Marshall, Blackstar, And Boss. 

Still haven't tried a Boss Katana myself.
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2017, 10:39:05 AM »
Hi Mick. My local music store is a Fender dealer, so there is a chance that I could find a Mustang 4 there, but The shortage of supply of the Boss amps suggests that I will only be able to get one online. But that's OK, if I get it from Thomann I can always send it back. Also, as an owner of a Mustang 3 the only real difference with the 4 is that it will be a lot louder cranked up and and stereo. TBH I am veering towards the Mustang on price/features alone. I'm not too interested in the Line 6, Marshall Code or Blackstar offerings. Line 6 are very expensive (well they are Yamaha) and seem to bitterly divide opinion, the Marshalls are just not available anywhere, and the Blackstars only have 10 inch speakers.

On the other hand the reviews of the Katana series are glowing:


I'll have to see how the funds work out ;)

Offline Mick

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2017, 12:46:22 PM »
KATANA does sound really nice in that demo I must admit.  8)

I forgot about the 10" speakers on the Blackstar's.  The Insider software is pretty rubbish IMO. plus there's a few reliability issue's and bugs that have popped up on their forums with the older ID:Core range which kind of puts me off getting another one. That said, my ID:Core 40 is really good.

The Mustang's are without doubt a very reliable range of amps, they have always been extremely good value for money.  A case of Better the devil you know.  The only thing I find with mine is, I spend a lot of time fiddling with the settings, and experimenting with different tones, instead of playing.  There's such a lot to explore. ;)
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2017, 10:38:00 AM »
I've made a decision. Despite the extra cost of the amplifier, and the outrageous cost of the foot pedal and/or expression pedals, I'm going to go for the Katana.

This additional vid helps to explain it a little more, perhaps.


Although it only has 4 patches as well as an and/or pedal chain, the effects are Boss pedals and tweakable via the PC/MAC app. The variable power output was a major plus for me too.

I will sell my V1 Mustang and keep the V2, which has stereo balanced outs for my (very occasional) live use, and obviously a completely different sound palette.

Just waiting for some funds to clear before tapping Thomann for a delivery.  ;D

Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2017, 02:12:34 PM »
It arrived about 2 hours ago.

F me is it loud. I've only run it on 0.5w and that is plenty for practicing. Sounds very very good. I'll have to wait until I have the house to myself before I try cranking it up, but I reckon it's going to be like my Corvette - never run flat out :)

A day later: Oh, bliss, it just sounds A Maze Zing. So much volume, even on half a watt, my ears are ringing. Such a range and depth of tone. Dare I say it? Looks like I'll never need another guitar amplifier. Just wow!

Get one before Boss change their mind about the pricing  :knuppel2:  8)
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 03:39:16 PM by Hinfrance »

Offline Mick

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2017, 07:36:23 PM »
It arrived about 2 hours ago.

F me is it loud. I've only run it on 0.5w and that is plenty for practicing. Sounds very very good. I'll have to wait until I have the house to myself before I try cranking it up, but I reckon it's going to be like my Corvette - never run flat out :)

A day later: Oh, bliss, it just sounds A Maze Zing. So much volume, even on half a watt, my ears are ringing. Such a range and depth of tone. Dare I say it? Looks like I'll never need another guitar amplifier. Just wow!

Get one before Boss change their mind about the pricing  :knuppel2:  8)

Cool.  8)  Look forward to your thoughts on the Katana, when you've had time to explore at depth.   I've watched a few YT reviews and it does sound very nice. some good effects available too.
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2017, 06:48:17 AM »
Here is the text of my review on Thomann for the Katana 100 2x12 and afterwards the review of the associated GA-FC footswitch, which is definitely recommended to make the use of the amplifier easier.

Pros: Excellent sounds, flexibility, build quality and volume. 4 channels so easy to use with a looper using a different tone.
Cons: No footswitch or USB cable supplied, no tuner, and mono only. Connections apart from instrument in are on the rear.
Recommendation: buy one before Boss change their minds!
I have had this amplifier for 2 months now, and I am still as in love with it as I was when I first fired it up.
God's teeth is it loud - I also own a Fender Mustang 3 V2, which I very much like, also 100w. But heavens the volume from the Boss has to be experienced to be believed. I am running it on 0.5w in the house and that is plenty (standing too close is not to be advised!). The build quality appears to be excellent - it's definitely a premium product. I had to update the firmware before using the Boss Tone Studio - a bit of a complicated process but easily enough done following the instructions carefully.
I've played all my guitars through it now, but usually use my acoustic Yamaha APX700 and my Epiphone Prophesy GX, the former using the acoustic pre-amp setting and the latter all the others. It has a much fuller tonal range than the Mustang, which can sound a little thin at times. The acoustic pre-amp is one of the main reasons I chose to buy this amplifier and it does not disappoint. Despite the relative simplicity of the controls there is a huge variety of tones available, all of them frankly excellent. The praise heaped on this machine for the brown sound is not misplaced. it's staggeringly good - as are the others. As I have grown more used to the amplifier I find the dynamic response of the crunch sound in particular is especially good. It really is simply excellent. The complimentary software is a little unintuitive, but works well. I've created my sounds which are now stored in on my laptop as a set.
The clean pre-amp takes external effects brilliantly, my Zoom G3X sounds better than it has ever done before.
I am giving 5 stars everywhere, because it just sounds so good, despite the niggling negatives: the amp is mono, there is no foot switch supplied and there is no tuner. And it is a bit pricey compared to the 1x12.
I now have a GA-FC which makes using the amplifier far simpler and enjoyable. The channels switch with very little delay - instantly for all practical purposes. Just a wonderful and wondrous machine.

And for the GA_FC:
In short: solid metal case, very 'sticky' feet, Katana supplied labels fit perfectly. Makes using the amplifier so much easier, and frankly essential for performance.
Detail: Plusses: chunky with a single row of foot switches. Red LEDs indicate which channel or effect is currently selected. Controls channel selection (including the panel) and switches the three effects groups on or off individually (being simple switches you cannot adjust any effect other than tap tempo parameters). It is also possible to switch the effects loop in and out It stays in place on the floor quite tenaciously.
Negatives: Does exactly what it says on the tin, although what it says on the tin is quite comprehensive, there is still no tuner which means running two cables across the floor to your playing position. The supplied control cable is cheap shiny plastic with moulded plugs and only 3 metres, so if you are serious about live use you will have to buy a longer better quality TRS lead. I am dropping a star in each category, total because it is expensive for what it is, features because there is no tuner, and quality because of the short and cheap control cable. The bottom line is that you do really have to have one if you have a Katana 100 or 1002x12.

Offline Mick

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2017, 12:26:57 PM »
Nice feedback on the Katana Howard.  Sounds like you're pleased with it.  :tup:

I'm yet to try one out for myself though.  But if it's louder than the Mustang 3, I might have to go a little smaller for home use.  ;)
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2017, 12:56:00 PM »
Ah, but it has the 0.5w power choke, which is what I use it on all the time in the house . . .  :legit:

Offline Mick

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2017, 01:32:56 PM »
Ah, but it has the 0.5w power choke, which is what I use it on all the time in the house . . .  :legit:

Good point Howard, I'd forgotten about that.  So in reality the Katana is probably more controllable than the Mustang 3.  I find the master volume on the Mustang very touchy for living room use, either very quiet, or very loud lol. 
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Offline Hinfrance

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Re: Boss Katana series
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2017, 03:23:52 PM »
Just so, the Mustang is not really terribly responsive to small inputs on the volume front, especially at the lower end of the scale. I tend to run mine at about '2' and never more than '3' in the house, which is most of the time :)

I happened to be passing the music shop yesterday and looked in briefly - they had a Katana 50; I had not seen one before. Oh my is it tiny, only just bigger than the 1x12 speaker. But allegedly gutsy enough to gig small venues with. I didn't try it.

 

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