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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on July 2, 2012
There are so many ways that the Fender G-DEC 3 Thirty qualifies as a great beginners amp that its usefulness to the experienced player can be overlooked. With the goal of trying to overcome that I'll start of by saying that I'm no tyro. I've been playing for about fifty years including more than a few on the professional level even to the point of having some recordings listed here on Amazon. So, with that out of the way, let me tell you how much the D-Dec 3 Thirty has going for ME.

One is its FUSE interlink. FUSE is a software made available by Fender that links this (and other) Fender amps to one's computer. And since the G-DEC itself is a "digital amp" - i.e, one whose tone and capability if created by digital manipulation of the signal, having a computer hooked up to it is a BIG plus and that in several ways.

One is FLEXABILITY. The G-DEC is, in sound, not one amp but many. Classic Fenders, Marshalls. Voxes, and some less well known ones too. Connect the G-DEC 3 to a computer using a standard UPS cable, choose an amp type, and the artistic rendering of that amp appears on the screen. -One with working controls. Volume. Gain. Bass. Treble. Etc. Too, virtual sound manipulating devices can be 'dropped' into the signal path just as one would do with hardware. Stomp boxes for fuzz, overdrive, chorus, wah, etc. And just as when one is using "real" hardware, so to with the virtual these devices can be placed anywhere in the signal chain.

The second is BAND in a BOX. Bands (plural) really. And amazingly good ones. Choose a style and let it loop or play through. Add a sound of your choice, and rock. Or wail. Or let your instrument dance or sing. Almost as you would with live friends creating the music.

The third attribute I will mention here is the G-DEC's amazing size/power ratio. No, you can't play a large venue such as a convert hall with just the G-DEC. But its line out (for your guitar's voice, the backing band, or both) can be fed to a larger system. And what you can do with just the G-DEC may surprise you. This thing is LOUD. And with its unusual for a small combo amp inclosed speaker (and tweeter) the tonal range of this little amp is also relatively huge.

I've only had my G-DEC for several days and I still have much to learn about how to get the best out of it. But already I know that its a winner. And this winner comes with the backing of a five year transferable warranty, so Fender knows it too.

Read all you can about the G-DEC. Both now and after you buy one.

And buy one you should. :)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 9, 2012
My job keeps me out on location for weeks at a time in an RV. This little amp has been great at helping me keep my chops and even exploring other genres, as I'm mostly a blues and classic rock guy. I'm actually spending a lot more time playing, kind of like the old days. Gotta love it. The pedal makes changing settings on the amp a lot easier. The downloads from Fender have tripled my loop library - I save the files to an SD card which the amp can read with its built in SD reader on the front. I don't know if I would perform live with it but I think I could. I don't know that the amp simulations are exact but they sound good. The loops are real instruments and players, not synthesized, and produced by musicians you know, Eric Johnson, Brad Paisely, etc. Some have complained about its tempo adjustment, amp models, recording capability but some people would complain about the mole on Cindy Crawfords cheek. The bottom line is this: it won't replace your live rig, but this little amp is the best at what its designed to do.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 22, 2011
I've had a GDec 30 and now a GDec 3 thirty. What a great little amp. The 3 thirty is a very positive change over the 3. With the SD card for back tracks, tweeter, amp modeling, built in tuner and FUSE software it can keep you busy for hours. The sound is great and the 30watts is powerful enough for any bedroom shredding or garage/backyard jamming. The foot switch can control almost any selection, tuning, start and stop.

It has an output jack that can plug into a powered speaker cabinet or another amp. I tried this with my old 3 before I sold it. Quality was very good and LOUD. I haven't tried it but I suspect a quality powered speaker would be a very nice addition.

If I could fill a wish list, it would be able to have the amp automaticaly associate a amp model with a backtrack. Instead it is a rather extended series of separate steps. In other words, you go through steps to select your backtrack, then you go through steps to select your amp model for that backtrack. Everytime.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on April 25, 2010
Love It,. have spent considerable time this weekend with some of the included backing tracks,. A Lot of Lick Building Fun. Sounds Fantastic for a solid state amp. I was debating on spending a bit more for a killer tube amp ,. but liked all the options and diversity of this gdec3. So far, I am very happy and not dissapointed by my choice. The software (Fender Fuse) is pretty cool but will definitely need some improvement,. like drag and drop new presets and songs as backing tracks. Otherwise very cool. Would be perfect if it had a simple recording feature., like say 4 tracks.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 11, 2012
I bought this mostly because I am just learning guitar, and wanted something that would help me with that. To that end, it has been beneficial. It has a metronome, and the backing tracks make practice fun. I have used it with the 4-switch foot pedal and would recommend getting that in addition. I have also hooked it up to my computer with the FUSE software and that is awesome. More adjustments, and lots of modifications possible. I also swapped my firmware out for the Blues Edition backing tracks which fit my style more. It's not a tube amp, so you can't compare it to that, but it is great for what it is. Plenty loud but turns down nicely. Oh, and for around $160 on Amazon, it's a no-brainer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 8, 2012
I had been interested in this for a while and took advantage of significant price reduction. It has many features that allow you to do a variety of things. It's primarily intended as a practice amp, but it can be used for recording and in live situations that don't require ear splitting volume. I play in a small group that provides music for senior citizen dances and have used it a few times there with good results. My band mates have complimented me on the sound.

There are several amps models to choose from and a variety of effects. There are 100 built in presets to get you started and you can use any of these for a starting point to edit to your taste, create new ones from scratch, or download ones from the Internet. Unlike some other reviewers I had no problems installing the Fuse software and connecting my amp to the computer. There is a definately learning curve to all this, and I really to this point have'm had time to take it all in, but that is in part do to the fact I have been rather busy this past mont and as things ease up for me, I suspect to have more opportunity to play with this and tailor things to my liking.

There is a mini stereo jack where you can plug in an mp3 or CD player to play along with and a second input for a second instrument. I have not used this second input but according to the manual, it opperates at a lower level than the main input. There are a number of built in backing tracks you can jam along with, and it is possible to upload your own. A mini jack is also available for headphones so you ca practice without disturbing others. A slot for an SD card is available to increase the number of backing tracks and presets available. Backing tracks can be either mp3/wave or midi; the former will take up more memory while the latter can be adjusted for both tempo and pitch, or you can also choose to have only the drum track play. A built in tuner is available. You can also record your own loops, a feature I have yet to use.

It is in some ways hard to rate how this amp sounds, as there are so many sounds available and no one basic sound. Many of the presets are totally unsuited to my types of music, which is not really a negative because I can either edit or ignore them, but there are some presets I like and I will probably be editing and creating my own as I go along. I am mostly interested in clean sounds and I think that there are some good sounding possibilities available here. How good the various dirty, distorted, or fuzzy sounds are I won't comment on. A foot switch is available to operate many of the features while playing, I haven't gotten one yet, but may do so in the future.

This is not really an amp for a beginner, but rather for the intermediate or higher guitarist who wants something to use at home or in some limited live situations. If you're looking for something along these lines, I recommend this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 13, 2012
If you don't know, G-DEC stands for "Guitar--Digital Entertainment Center," and that describes this amp exactly. I can't say how well the G-DEC 30 is suited for a gigging guitarist, since I'm only a hobbyist, but it's a fantastic little amp for someone who plays mostly for himself. The ability to choose vastly different tones is great, and using the Fuse software, that number changes from 99 to infinite. More than that, there's a series of music books that come with SD cards loaded with the tones of the music you're trying to play, so you don't even have to dial it in. Finally, being able to start up a loop and noodle along seems to me like a great way to build your chops, but even if it's not, again, it's fun.

The enclosure seems solidly built. The dials feel solid, but the other controls are mostly plastic buttons and do feel a bit flimsy, but if you buy the very useful footswitch (Fender Footswitches - Contemporary - GDEC/BDEC ULT-4), you hardly ever have to touch them, as almost every function of the amp, from presets to loops to tuning to recording. is accessible from the pedal, something that's far beyond convenient when you've got a guitar swinging around your neck. I don't have a large practice space, so others' mileage may vary, but I rarely turn my G-DEC up past 3, and it gives me more than enough volume.

As I said, I play guitar for fun. This little amp should have 'fun' written all over it. If you buy it for that purpose, I don't think you'll be disappointed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 5, 2012
Sounds great; lots of fun when I get home and need to unwind; should prove very useful if I start solo gigs again (I can use the amp itself to play MIDI files, instead of setting up my Boss DR-5's). But for now I'm just having a blast, and improving my riffs. This amp has given me my own excellent-sounding band, ready to play at my beck and call, and ready to let me jam and experiment all I want, with no complaints and no time constraints. Can't get over how cool this thing is -- and how inexpensive for what you get (especially compared to equipment from 10 years ago).
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
I've had this guitar amp for about three years now and must admit it has yet to let me down. There is so much a player can do with it from just plugging in & practicing with the bluesy tone at 00 to the clean & twangy tone at 50, you can have a ball with it.

The built in tuner is a breeze to use & it is helpful being right there at the touch of a button. The rhythms are great offering a wide variety from metal to blues to jazz to rockabilly to even hair metal. Then you get the myriad of effects/setting to play with which is a lot of fun. the idea here is to experiment with the effects to get an idea of what they do & how you can incorporate them into your playing.

Another nice feature is the learn-a-lick feature where the processor loops about 25 seconds of a song or solo from a CD/MP3/iPod player while you figure out how to play it. Supposedly you can slow this loop down to 1/2 speed but I have yet to figure that one out and the manual doesn't help.

The amp modeler is fun as you can play around with everything from a British built tube amp to a modern day jazz amp.

Now with all that said, I will admit that the effects at times sound sterile with no life to them and some of the amp settings are not all sweet sounding. But then you get the good with the bad when you buy something that's trying to be all inclusive, eh?

Overall I have to say for a beginner's first amp, you would be hard pressed to find anything better for the price. Sure you could buy a bigger amp with lots more power but for what? Beginner's don't need it loud - just loud enough & this 30 watt amp delivers! Further, to try & spend the money for each effect as a single pedal, you're talking several more hundred dollars in cost.

Take my advice & buy this one for your budding Eddie Van Halen wannabe because s/he'll want to play with the toys it offers as well as use the loop function to learn a lick from a CD or MP3 song.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on April 11, 2012
This little device contains enough tech to consume countless hours of both tedious programming and fun. The stock tones and combinations of tones with pre-programmed backing tracks can be great fun, but recording your own tracks (using perhaps Addictive Drums on Ableton) and then bouncing them over via an SD card and connecting your computer to change the programming on the amp gives you a "band in a box" thru your amp. The forums allow you to download other tones people have created, and then there's the songbooks such as Hendrix & SRV and more so that you can learn the tunes. Great tool for the money and when you need to just be indulgent and have a 1/2 hour to jam, the amp is ready when you are. As always the negatives are the complexity of the tech and taking the hours to understand all the nooks and crannies. The payoff is worth it.
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