The megalith beta comes straight out of a niche but popular company situated in Sydney, New South Wales. MI Audio construct and sell a vast range of amplifiers and effects pedals, but none have taken the Australian music scene by storm as much as this versatile guitar amplifier.

Boasting a powerful 160-watt output utilising 4 x KT88 power tubes and 4 x 12ax7 preamp tubes, this is an amp that will meet any dynamics and headroom requirements both live and in the studio.

The main appeal of this amplifier other than its stunning tone, is just how much control you have over said tone. Both the clean channel and the overdrive channel both have a separate gain control in the preamp stage. Both channels then have their own standard EQ controls: Bass, Middle, Treble as well as volume.

But where the amp really shines is in its extra controls.

Each channel also has a contour control which provides the use and the ability to shape their tone further than the EQ controls alone.

Each channel then has a further 3-way switch to make further EQ adjustments before finally looking at each of channels exclusive switch. The “bright” switch on the clean channel and the “attack” switch on the overdrive channel. These are also both 3-way switches and, as the names suggest, adjust brightness and attack for each channel respectively.

Now, by this point, it’s hard to imagine having any other ways to controls and construct exactly what your perfect tone should be. But they also decided to include a “Gain Mode Switch” which will allow you to switch between low, mid and high gain. (Or as I like to call them: low, high and extreme)

Another cool feature of the amp is the fact that it has two separate master control knobs, allowing the user to set two different stage volumes and toggle between them using the provided footswitch. This completely obliterates the need for purchasing any sort of clean boost pedal.

On the topic of the provided footswitch, this is no ordinary A-B stomp box. It is a large block with three separate foot switches. The left one switches between clean and overdrive channels and the right one switches between the aforementioned two master volumes. It is the middle switch however that provides the most interesting feature. It allows you to completely switch the tube-buffered FX loop on and off. This is massively useful in practical terms. For example, if you were to be playing a section of a piece which require six different pedals, all of which are running through the loop, instead of individually stomping each of those pedals on and making a very messy transition to the new section, you could simply turn the FX loop off. You could then stomp all the pedals on at your leisure without affecting your sound and then simply turn your FX loop back on when you need it. Incredible!

Simply put, if you’re looking for an amplifier that will cover literally every sonic territory, it would be wise to consider the megalith beta. It is true that there is a lot packed onto to the control panel, which means many hours of tweaking and getting to know the amps characteristic. However, once you do know your way around all the tone shaping tools at your disposal, you will be able to switch between a sparkling and pure clean tone, to a tight, dirty crunch tone, and then straight to a liquid overdrive tone all in the blink of an eye.

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