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Review for: DigiTech 2120 VGS Artist
Purchase price of 850 USD
Rating: 4.0
Ease of Use: Is the 2120 easy to use? That depends on how you feel about the factory patches. The 100 presets cover a wide range of use, and I think any player would find several patches they would be pleased with. If you want to understand the unit in depth, you must have some patience, since the manual seems to be a slapped together update of the 2112 manual with errors and omissions. That said, I do not feel this unit has any competition right now. The dual distortion pathes allow both solid state and tube distortion, simultaneously if you like, or "morphing" between the two. A very cool feature. The large, custom display is also a work of art, and I love the user interface, five active knobs on the front that make editing very, very easy. You still have to deal with page, page, page, or menu, menu, menu sometimes, but compared to anything else I've seen, this unit is a real gem. You'll be spoiled if you have to go back to a standard effects unit with just one knob and some page up and down buttons. I got my unit with the FC-1 floor pedal, and it's very cool too, giving the user options of using the foot swithces as either effects on/off switches, or to change programs. Unfortunately, to really maximize this, you need to mess around for a while, again due to the short comings of the manual. But I really like the 2120, it has inspired me to play more guitar, to play better, and has clearly made my music sound better.
Sound Quality: The 2120 seems to do the impossible, combining both analog and digital elements in one box. So you have analog tubes, compression, and wah, along side digital parametric eq, cabinet emulations, reverb and more. It's a tough challenge, but the 2120 really makes it work. I have not found another single box in any price range that can do what the 2120 does. The people at the factory were apparently very concerned about the unit sounding noisy, so the noise gate has been set at a level unuseable for making music. Might seem impressive at a NAMM demo, but I always have to lower this parameter to get any sustain out of the box.I know people have their own preferences with regard to distortion quality, reverb accuracy, but I like this box. Its effects have their own character. For example, I can't say that the wah sounds like my CryBaby Wah, or sounds better, it just sounds different. And given the extensive control over EQ in the box, you can endlessly tweak it to come up with your own, personalized sound. I might add that most presets seem like they were written on the single s-disc, early 2112 version of this unit, meaning that the unit has twice the digital processing power the presets represent.
Reliability: N/A I have had no problems at all at this point, owning the unit for about two months.
Customer Support: N/A Digitech customer support has been very helpful. Sometimes it is tough to get someone on the line, but when I did leave a message, I got a call back in the afternoon, on Digitech's dime! While the manual is definitely substandard, the guys in Utah know what they are talking about. I would recommend downloading the pdf version of the manual from their website. It will allow you to search for key words and topics, since there is no index in the printed manual.
Reviewer: Wayne
Post Date:06/28/1999

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