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Pignose user reviews, verified buyers:

Muasicians Friend reviews:
30+ Years Recording & Sound Engineer, Musician While many of the new modeling amps have found a way a into the market and do offer many different effects and features. The Pignose 7-100 is different. It offers you a tool to learn about your guitar with great sound and portability. it offers you ways of learning to create and experience different sound & tones by opening its Box. It offers a professional fuzz and a great clean sound. The 7-100 has a great preamp out feature that most modeling amps do not offer nor have the quality that the 7-100 has a way of driving your tube amp or PA.. So its Great for live or recording The 7-100 takes pedals very well unlike most modeling amps. Very Portable, Durable, long Battery Life, Simple yet Very Professional. 7-100 has a past legendary history. I have several different Amps but I will always have 2 of these when I travel. / Johnny M, Boston

OK, it doesn't really deserve 5/5 for features as it only has an on/off/volume knob and a hinged case. But that's missing the point ;-)What it has got is terrific mojo, and a great sound. If you use it just with your guitar's volume and tone knobs, your pick attack or finger feel, you will learn far more about getting the tone you want than just dialling up setting Blues-36 on some modeling amp. Modeling amps are great, but this little fellow makes you create the tone with your fingers and the guitar's pots. It should have a place in any serious guitar student's practice armory. / Psychopasta, Seattle

It is light, loud, wireless. I might take this thing outside and play. It's like an amp that can be taken to a party or a friend's house or a band practice without any hassle. It is just so portable. And great for AC/DC, White Stripes, (some) Led Zeppelin, and sure even some Jazz. It sounds nice and creamy on the neck pickup. I just wish I could bring down the mids and add some lows to the tone, but I'll be getting an EQ pedal soon so it won't be a problem for me. Just a single knob. Volume stays the same when the knob reaches about 3/4s turned, and from there on it just adds overdrive. The first five minutes of fooling around with this thing I was extremely dissapointed. It is tiny. I mean so, so small. But then I learned how loud it is. I play in front of my high school in the gymnasium every month or so, and I am sure this thing would be loud enough. I also like that there is space inside the amp for cables. The DC out or whatever is wierd though. It didn't fit my Danelectro AC DC adapter or the one that came with my electro harmonix freeze, so I was forced to use 6 AA batteries. And an EQ knob would have been nice. At least something to lower the mids. Built like a small, leather bomb shelter. I'm sure it'll last awhile. Haven't had mine long enough to learn how long the 6 AA batteries will last though. Tone is good but it's just so much mid range that it is only good for rock and roll. This is only my second amp (my other one is a Fender Frontman 65r) and this little guy holds up (volume wise) with the 65 watts of the fender. But I noticed that my fuzz pedal behaves differently with this amp, like it is more fierce and bright. Also, there is a lot of pop in this thing. Like if I were to hit a string hard (like I usually do) then there would be a popping sound. Nothing a compressor couldn't fix though. Overdrive is great! I just wish I didn't have to turn the up so dang loud to get it. Otherwise I would disturb my parents. I would pay a hundred dollars more than what it is priced at for this amp. It sounds great. / Stilldog, Peoria

Absolutely an amazing amp with incredible sound and is also very good looking and built solid. It is loud. I play it about level 3 and my guitar at 7 and its as loud as I would ever want. This sounds better than my mid size Amp that cost me a lot more. I am surprised beyond expectations on how good this small amp is. It works perfect on 6 AA batteries or on the optional AC 9 Volt Adapter. If you buy the AC Adapter make sure you buy one made by Pignose with the Pignose name on it. I bought one first as advertised for the Pignose Amp but was not an actual Pignose Adapter and the problem with those type are that you will hear a very loud hum on your amp that will annoy you to no end. With the real Pignose adapter the hum is non exsistent. / EBnorth, Ontario

First off I have known & Used these Amps since the 70's. I have several Pignose Amps. USA &, made in Japan & some China. As a practice amp. 1. This amp will allow you to learn and focus on your guitar better. With this amp it is true blue (no modeling nothing fake here that will limit or isolate your sound. 2. you can learn how to get a more natural recording with proper mic, and location as well as a pre amp source that will drive your PA or Larger tube amp better than any stomp box. 3. Using this to record with this or play live you have to know a bit and practice with the Pignose to get those professional tones but its certainly obtainable. Although with some guitars you may have to select or even adjust your pickups for a super clean recording but once again( your learning about your guitar) going to a buddy's or a party to jam I have found I only need to bring my Pignose and maybe an effects pedal with a good PA. I have used more than 1 Pignose and at times and actually surprised some very talented old school street musicians that were using the new very pricy powerful Roland Cube. 2 of the guys were shocked at the sound I was getting out of the little amp next to their $$ amps. I may not have had the volume but what they liked was tone of the Amp and that is all you need to record and for live with that great tone a good PA or a clean Tube Amp of course preamp out. I should mention unlike most modeling amps the Pignose takes stomp boxes great. Portable & Travel the size speaks for itself. If your wanting a bit more power and not portable a nice little Tube Amp try is the G40V Pignose. I ran my 7-100 into it and it got great clean, tones blues with most all the controls down accept the master the growl to me sounds much better using the Pignose preamp into it. If you buy this little amp just to preamp into your main stage amp it will bring out more beauty from your amp that no pedal will offer. / Coolmixes

Great little amp for a practice rig or take a line out into the PA for a full on gig. Stick a 'bottle o blues' mike in and blow that harp! Excellent sound from such a small package. Using it for practice and then line out into a tube amp for a real gig...great piece of kit! / Abernibble, Wales UK

This amp is a must have for any musician. Got someone that plays that doesn't have one? Gift it, and they will be forever thankful. This little jewel is just perfect for sitting around the house strumming plugged in, keep it low. And when you a ready to turn it up, get ready for volume that you won't believe from this 5 pound box. Very solidly made. Only issue was when I first put in the batteries, I had no sound, but after moving ( l-r) 4-6 back into the holder, it worked. Have to be a little nimble and patient the first time you load up the 6 AA and get the 'feel' for how they 'click' in. In the small amp category, this one is the KING. / BigDaddy, Mississippi Delta

If your looking for a great harmonica amp this is the one to use, doesn't cost a fortune and has the overdriven sound that every harp guy or gal tries to find with amp's. This Pignose amp is extremely loud,look's will fool you with this little baby, it's a beast. / Sonny Boy, New Mexico

Everyone with an electric guitar needs one of these. If your guitar sounds bad thru a Pignose, it's a lousy guitar. They should standardize youtube reviews of guitars by playing everything thru a pig, first at low volume clean, then at higher volume overdrive. No features. On/Off and volume. The more volume, the more overdriven distortion. Some tonal variation depending on how far open you leave it. Output jack to use as a pre-amp. Well made and resilient. The AA battery setup is preferable to the usual 9V battery. Originally they were size A batteries, which were so close in size to AA that they just stopped making them. Metal reinforcement everywhere you could possibly need it. For cheap, a practice amp that sounds like a tube amp, AND an overdrive distortion effect if you use it as a pre-amp. You could spend twice that on a distortion box and it wouldnt sound half as good / NortonC, MON

As a guitar player, I really don't see any reason at all why you wouldn't own one of these. I own two of them, and I'm about to buy the tweed version. These things are pure gold. Sure...you're not going to blow the roof off of Madison Square Garden with it, but it's a very rock n' roll little nugget of an amp. With a good guitar and/or pickups this little piggy can wail all the way home. My Double Fat Strat plays like a dream through my Pignose. So...just buy one and play it until your fingers and your ears hurt. / Tux Cat, East Coast

Had one of these in prison. Small, so it didn't take up too much room in my little house (cell). Open it up for more treble response. Great White Buffalo never sounded so good . . . on C Block. / Harry U. SLcity

I keep this in my living room so can practice anytime. I play blues and blues rock, the tone is perfect for that style! Simple operation, turn the volume knob (the pigs nose) and adjust the tone by opening or closing the amp. WHAT? Yes, think of the amp as a small suitcase. When the amp is filly closed, you get a muffled old blues bassy tone. When the case is opened, you get a more full range tone. It's fun to play around with this. I like the case opened about a 1/2". It's a classic! / Shy Willy, Northern MN

AMAZON reviews:
I admit that it might be more expensive that other 5 watt amps, but as time goes by, I just fall more in love with my Piggy! I've learned to use better it's own volume combined with the guitar's.
I have other amps of higher power that can get a LOT louder that the Pignose, but I just LOVE the level of distortion it gives; I cannot get this crunch with the other amps, no matter how much pedals, bells, whistles I have tried... This crunch is unique and the world loves it, as simple and plain as that. The good thing is that it has an output at the back to connect it to louder amps and like that you can have at louder volumes that unique crunch I so much fell in love with.
The 7 chords give a clean amazing sweet-grumble (the one that make teenage girls sigh for you...) with high volume on the Piggy and low on the guitar. / Mano

The Pignose works well for a quick choir rehearsal and I don't have to move amps. It is loud enough for the room but distorts at half volume or more. It is great for playing on the back porch. Very easy to carry around and it is beautiful. / Russell

After wanting one for years I finally got one. I love this little amp, love love love it. It has great tone and good crunch when I crank it up. You can open it up (like a guitar case) and change the tone to suit your taste. It runs for a surprisingly long time on batteries which I did not expect. If you get the A/C adapter it fits inside the amp.

Over a year later and my 50 watt Fender only gets fired up when I want to be really loud. / Doug W

A portable, great sounding, well-established little amp. I also bought the adapter so that could save on batteries and plug it into the wall socket. I would recommend this because this little sweety is too cool not to use in the house (and you don't have to use headphones like the big boys. The first time that I saw one of these there was this guys who used to roller skate around the parking lot (wearing a turban on his head and plugged into a Pignose singing some endless, but intriguing song of his own creation) at the Grateful Dead shows in Southern California. I've wanted one ever since. Now, I have one! Try it, you'll like it... / R Boyd

Seriously folks, this amp has what it takes, I'm betting Frank Zappa knew that too. Just one volume knob, no effects...spells awesome. If you seriously want to be a better guitar player than this will hep you get there. One needs to learn how to control their sound through the guitar and not effects. Turn the guitar's volume up and viola... overdrive and distortion. Turn the volume on the guitar down and open the the cabinet and clean is clean. If Angus Young can get that legendary tone from a guitar and an amp then this is what you want to practice with. A++ / Jack T

This is my second pignose amp. I love this amp! I play my lap top steel guitar on the deck using this little amp. It has such a great sound and also has a ac adapter which I purchased so when the batteries die I have a back up.I have owned this amp for years and I just love it.

Thanks so much for I was so worried that I would not be able to purchase another one. So compact and is made of great quality. For anyone who plays an electric instrument requering an amp this is the one!!!! / Charles C

Hey, All!

Just wanted to post a grateful acknowledgment to Howard at Pignose.

My Hog 30 amp was out of warranty and had a defective input jack (both front and back, actually). I've been all over the web and local repair shops with either no response or ridiculous price ($125 repair for a $139 amp). I've also read posts in several forums about how unresponsive Pignose is.

Finally, out of desperation, I e-mailed Pignose yesterday and told my sad story, asking for a repair shop referral. Same day (Sunday), I got a reply from Howard offering to repair the amp free-of-charge. Turns out, to save me the cost of shipping the whole unit, he's sending me a new chassis--TODAY. I'm psyched!!


Pignose user Mark Vigil writes:

Hi Howard, thank you for your answer regarding my Hog 20. Believe it or not, in the 10 years I have owned it, I never have tried a distortion pedal together with the squeal. I either played it with clean tone, or if I wanted to play rock or metal through it, I would plug my Korg Pandora guitar fx while the Hog 20 was set to clean tone and it sounded just great. So now that you told me it was safe to play a dist. pedal and squeal together, I tried it today with my Boss Distortion and didn't like it, it muddied up the sound. The squeal tone sounds just great by itself, sort of like a vintage Electro-Harmonix Big Muff!

The Hog 20 squeal has a very unique sound. If there was a section on the Pignose site titled "Tell Us Your Pignose Story", this would be mine on how my Hog 20 really came through for me. You see, about five years ago I drove 150 miles from Santa Fe NM, (my hometown) to Taos NM to sit in with a local country band who needed me to play pedal steel guitar for them. (I own a simple 10 string pedal steel with three foot pedals and knee levers, and I can play it fairly well).

This was an important New Year's eve gig, and there was going to be a big audience. So I took my Roland Jazz Chorus amp (the model with two ten inch speakers) as this was my favorite amp to play my steel through, and during the first set it started crackling and shorting out the sound. It didn't do this during our set up and sound check earlier in the day, why now? The band members all glared at me, as if i was ruining their gig, and the leader said to the crowd, that we were having technical difficulties and had to stop playing to correct it.

So there I was up the creek without a paddle. We tried patching my steel direct into the mixer from from my delay pedal, but it sounded weak and distorted. I needed an amp to play it through! (Sh**t, what am I going to do now?) People were started to leave! Then I remembered, that my Hog 20 was behind the seat of my truck in the protective canvas bag I carry it in, (cause' the day before I had taken it to my job so I could jam during lunch hour) and the batteries were fully charged! So we put my Hog 20 on a milk crate and then placed a Shure SM57 mic in front of it, and I connected my Carter steel guitar to my volume pedal, and the volume pedal to my Ibanez analog delay pedal, and the delay to the Hog 20 and the night was saved!

I had never tried playing my steel through the Hog 20 before and since this was an emergency, I found out that it sounded just great! My Hog 20 put just the right amount of clean tone and volume to let my steel sing out, and the pa did the rest. So the crowd partied down, we had a good gig, and I earned those 200 bucks fair and square. Thank You Pignose!

And now these days when I record my pedal steel to multi-track, I play it through the Hog 20, cause I like the sound! That night I could have patched it to the board with the headphone jack, but I was in such a panic, I just grabbed the first mic I found. So when I record my steel to multi-track, I still mic the Hog 20.

PS. Today at the local music store (Candyman) in Santa Fe, NM, I tried an original Pignose amp for the first time. I had never heard one before, so I took a Squier Strat off the wall, and I had my trusty Ibanez AD9 analog delay pedal with me, and I played the lead to Dire Straits "Sultans Of Swing", and I fell in love with Pignose all over again! That is one bad-ass little amp!

It is loud and produces clear tone, and it looks bitchin'. Sort of like an old-style sailor's trunk. And I saw that when you open the case in different amounts the tone changes! I was able to get bassy jazz tones, bright rock tones, heavy rhythm sounds, and even Big Muff fuzz tone! So, I then told the sales guy to stash it in the back, till next payday, because I gotta have that little amp! I can't believe it sounds that good with only one control knob and one input jack.

And the best part about this little amp, is it challenges your creativity! I found out that you have to make your own tone by using the controls on your electric guitar and also by opening the Pignose case in different amounts and placing it in different positions. In this modern day of digital do-everything-for-you music equipment, it is refreshing to know that music making products that challenge you to use your brain, are still made and the Original Pignose is one of them.

Roger O' Donnell who is the keyboardist for "The Cure" recently recorded a solo album using only one Mini-Moog to play all the parts on all the songs, and a Mini-Moog only plays one note at a time, chords are not possible on it, I know this because I have one. That is just one example of a musician using their creativity to make good music instead of cheating with digital equipment, that does all the work for you!

I myself have a Korg 16 track digital machine with a hard drive in it, but I prefer recording my tracks through my 1998 Mackie 1604 analog mixer and into my two ADAT XT 20 eight-track tape machines, because when it is played back it just sounds better, that's all there is to it! All the great rock and country albums of the 70's 80's and 90's were recorded on 16 or 24 track tape reels, and to me that is multitrack recording in it's purest form. I know nothing about Pro-Tools!

Well, I suppose this letter was as long as a novel, and I hope I didn't bore you too much, but I had to once again express my great appreciation for my Hog 20, and soon I will have me an Original Pignose amp of my own, also. Bye now, and long live analog!