Review: Fender Acoustasonic 150 Combo Amp
The Fender Acoustasonic 150 guitar amplifier is ideally suited to the gigging musician looking to maximize the sound of an acoustic-electric guitar while taking advantage of a variety of modern features and flexibility. The Acoustasonic delivers an incredibly clean, full, and powerful sound, provided by two 8” foam-surround low-frequency neodymium drivers and a high frequency tweeter that deliver 150 watts of pristine acoustic tone. Two inputs allow for amplification of 2 sources, with the option for a microphone input on the second channel via a combo jack capable of providing phantom power for use with condenser microphones or other active electronics.
In addition to the two inputs, the Acoustasonic has multiple output options, including a USB output that can be used for recording directly into your computer, and doubles as a means for updating the firmware of the amp. As standard with most amps, a 3-band EQ is included on the instrument channel, but where the Acoustasonic really stands out is the effects and voicing section. The voicing control allows you to select between different acoustic tones and apply them to your performance. You can select between Parlor, Dreadnought, and Jumbo acoustic sounds as well as tweed, Blackface, and British amp settings for electric guitar tones that sound surprisingly authentic even when played with an acoustic guitar.
You can also bypass this feature and use the direct sound from your instrument. This feature alone allows you to limit the amount of gear you need to bring to a gig, and it’s worth its weight in gold. With the Acoustasonic, one guitar, and one amp is all you need, and at just over 22 lbs, loading out after the gig will feel a whole lot easier. You can even scrap your pedal board because the Acoustasonic comes with an onboard FX section that allows you to apply reverb, delay, chorus, and vibratone.
There’s plenty of combinations and variations of these effects to use, as well as a master FX level to control the amount blended into your sound (and keep in mind that those two 8-inch drivers mean that you’re getting those FX in stereo). Effects can truly add to your performance, but in some cases they actually change the way you play. Most likely, you bought your guitar because it felt good in your hands, and it sounded great, and more than anything, you felt like it helped you to play better. The Acoustasonic’s String Dynamics feature has the same effect. Essentially, it’s a compressor for those pesky high notes that sometimes peek out too harshly when you amplify your acoustic guitar. When applied, every note is smoothed out, but not suppressed so much as to be noticeable. Everything just sounds right. Once turned on, you’ll be hard pressed to find a reason to turn it off. It’s spectacular. Every nuance of your playing, and the tone of your guitar is enhanced, and your playing will respond to that.