Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

NAD- Boss Katana 50 Mk2


wraub
 Share

Recommended Posts

After a lot of reading and online comparisons, I went out yesterday to pick up one of these. I figured the best way to know if it was any good was to really know.

Drove to GC, it was quick and casual there, and got it home.

Smaller than expected, easy unboxing and setup. As yet, I have only played it as-is, no computer involved- that will likely come.

 

Played through it for a few hours last night, first impressions: the clean sound is very good, as is the crunch, very useful stuff there, plays well with pedals. The "brown" setting is really good, very faithful imo, although a little hissy. The brown and distortion channels both have some high end background hiss, slight but apparent. Pretty sure it wouldn't be an issue in a group or gig setting, but it's there.

 

I tried it for a second at the higher output settings, the 25 watt one is louder than I could really ever use in the house (although next time I'm home alone there will be a moment...) , and the 50 watt one is, as expected, even louder but mostly seems to add some headroom. The .5 watt setting is perfect for my uses, just loud enough bordering on too loud at some settings. If needed, it do get loud.

 

I wouldn't say it's the best at any one thing, but it's very good at lots of things that all seem useful. Apparently involving the computer and applying some global EQ can improve it further, I'll probably do that after I get used to what it offers like this. It seems to offer almost endless opportunities for experimentation with tone shaping and sonic creativity that I'm kinda looking forward to trying. If I keep it I will get the foot switch.

 

I have it for 45 days, I intend to use it a lot and see if we fully bond, but, for now, I think I like it. More to come.

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 17
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Thanks for the report Wraub! Keep us posted on ordering the foot switch and keeping the amp or sending it back at the 45 days limit. All amps have some sort of limitations and one must decide if it serves the general purpose in the price range. My favorite setting in my bed/music room on my Fender is 1 watt. Plenty loud enough. It will go to 25watts +/-. The original Deluxe Reverb runs about 22 tube watts IIRC. My 25 SS modeling watts puts out the same as the original tube watt amp. Usually when thinking about wattage, the SS amps are about 1/2 the wattage compared to tube amps, RMS, etc., as a rule of thumb. I put the SS Fender up against my Hot Rod Deluxe tuber that runs 40watt and it did very well. I know I do not need 40 anymore and thought 30 would be just right. Now I like 20! I would probably not run mine full up unless it's an outdoor gig. Inside it will blow your doors off LoL!

 

Anyway, I'm a one trick pony clean amp mostly rhythm kind of player and no longer need a loud enough amp to fill a grange hall. Now I can run my amp to the PA or FOH and use it as my monitor and/or use it in small venues. I bought mine new at a GC too. It is nice to know I can take it in if I have problems under warranty. Hope you are able to keep the Katana and it fills most of your amp needs! :cool:

Take care, Larryz
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use the 100. I think the output tapers really well. It sound good either loud or quiet and it has a power scaling switch. You can even run 1 watt mode T think ... it"s in storage.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree that the Katana's are great all-rounders. My Redplate Blues Machine did a better "Dumble" tone but I never got the clean tone the way I wanted it and one New Years Eve 3 years ago it decided to be rebased (matched 6L6s) and truly sounded pathetic. Even if I'd brought a meter and a screw driver to re-bias it, to do that properly takes almost half an hour and we had 10 minutes to start time when the problem started. So I sold it, no regrets.

 

CEB, I have the 100 combo and it goes from "silent stage" to .5 watts to 50 watts to 100 watts. I used 50 watts once at an outdoor gig, all indoor gigs have been at .5 watts. And I've mentioned a few times that putting it in .5 watts, turning the Master Volume up to 11 o' clock or so will make it sound more like a tube amp with the output section being driven. I like that, not a distortion player - more of an overdrive tone is my preference for lead work.

 

The combination of tone, versatility, cost and reliability are pretty compelling. I've been considering getting the 50 and selling the 100 because I can do most everything with 2 channels and I could put it up on a stand and do the tap tempo or kick in the chorus by hand. Less on the floor, I like that. The 6 button footswitch is pretty nice though.

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been seeing a lot of the 50 Watt MK II model for under $200US, and while I don't need another Guitar Amp, I have been curious about them?

 

Might be more worthwhile than investing in another Boss MFX . . .

 

BTW, word is that the Katana 50 doesn't work with the 6-button GA-FC footswitch; you need the more compact FS-6 or FS-7.

"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

 

http://www.novparolo.com

 

https://thewinstonpsmithproject.bandcamp.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You see a lot of Katanas on Broadway in Nashville. They are really decent, low cost and super lightweight. I use my 100 watter for Pedal Steel. It replaced my Nashville 400s. They do not have a same bottom end as the Peaveys but they sound better because those Nashvilles are from the late eighties and are noisy. And ..... they are HEAVY.

 

I like the Katana for acoustic instruments. A lot of Katana players swap out speakers but I"m afraid that could impact the sound of acoustic stuff. I like it stock. I"m afraid a good after market guitar driver would be too mid rich and less full range.

 

On Country gig I used to carry three amps. 1) Boogie for guitar 2) Nashville 400 for steel and a 3) Fishman for banjo dobro and acoustic guitars. The katana does everything. Electric Guitar is my least favorite but if I only played electric guitar I bet I could optimize it better for just guitar.

"It doesn't have to be difficult to be cool" - Mitch Towne

 

"A great musician can bring tears to your eyes!!!

So can a auto Mechanic." - Stokes Hunt

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been seeing a lot of the 50 Watt MK II model for under $200US, and while I don't need another Guitar Amp, I have been curious about them?

 

Might be more worthwhile than investing in another Boss MFX . . .

 

BTW, word is that the Katana 50 doesn't work with the 6-button GA-FC footswitch; you need the more compact FS-6 or FS-7.

 

True regarding the footswitch. My favorite feature of the 6 button footswitch is that you can choose one of your presets (4 in each bank) and then switch 6 toggles between the default of your preset and turning the switch into a pedal board.

Click it once and now you can turn distortion and effects on and off and use the tap tempo switch.

 

If you are tired of all the knobs getting moved around on your pedals, all the cords (including the power supply), etc, the Katana 100 with the 6 button footswitch is the way to go. One cord for the guitar and one for the footswitch is really nice.

The Line Out on back has a good speaker sim too, I've run the amp on silent, sent the line out to the PA and the floor monitors sound just like the amp's speaker.

 

They are good amps and great bang for the buck.

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm pretty sure I'll be getting the foot switch.

 

Played through the Katana for a few more hours yesterday, it's very capable. I've yet to plug in the computer, I've been using the controls on the amp and getting a variety of great sounds, finding out what does what.

The reverb is good, the delay is pretty good, the amp variations are as useful as the main settings, and it's all very adjustable with the amp's controls.

The brown and lead channels do have some hiss, but it's comparable to the sound of the modeled amps at idle, definitely not too obtrusive but louder than the clean channels which are very quiet. I don't think it would be an issue in a band context, but could see it being so in a solo setting.

The "tone settings" buttons presets are good too, one offers a reverby-clean that's Fendery enough for my uses. It gets a lot of play time.

 

I've been turning on the amp in the morning, playing for a while, and doing other stuff, then playing some more, etc. The Katana quietly waits to get loud, and it does sound good. I leave it in standby mode when not playing, then switch it to .5 watts, which can still get a little too loud at some settings.

 

So far, it's difficult to find much to dislike.

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been using the mk 2 50 kat as well. We go direct at practice and I'm using as a glorified amp sim .

I run it crunchy and dial back my guitar for cleans. It works great and definately cuts through .

I've been using the Aria mostly now as it cleans up real nice and sounds nice and stratty.

But I must say when I tried out a fly rig recently the guys loved the tones. I do have more options with the kat though.

Definately a cool amp with options galore if you use the tone studio.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

6 months later, still enjoying the Katana. So much so, in fact, that I have yet to introduce it to a computer. There's a lot of good stuff in there as=is, although watching various videos on the subject I can definitely see lots of added stuff there too.

It really is a pretty good piece of gear, and it's been perfect for my needs.

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 months later, still enjoying the Katana. So much so, in fact, that I have yet to introduce it to a computer. There's a lot of good stuff in there as=is, although watching various videos on the subject I can definitely see lots of added stuff there too.

It really is a pretty good piece of gear, and it's been perfect for my needs.

 

I sold my Katana 100 (first version) and bought the Katana 50 MK II. I already had the Boss footswitch for it - highly recommend it.

I also recommend the computer for programming, the rotary speaker alone is worth it but the EQ options, reverb options and the variety of gain options are also worth the deep dive.

 

I have 4 presets for gigging with the footswitch:

1 - cleanish but with a bit of grit and some spring reverb - old school Fender amp turned up just enough to growl if you hit it hard tone.

2. Slightly more gain and a rotary speaker with spring reverb. We don't have a keyboard player in the band but I can sound "Hammond-is" with this preset, a nice option.

3. Quite a bit more gain and spring reverb - more or less an old tube amp turned way up but with controllable volume. My main lead tone.

4. Lots of gain, delay and hall reverb. I just punch in the tempo manually on the tap tempo button on top of the amp. We have a few tunes that need a spacier sounding guitar tone.

 

Most of the time I use the clean and dirty tones. The rotary and the space guitar have their place.

I love gigging this rig, it's small and light and sounds great. The footswitch is super simple, I have my clean and rotary on the 1 position of the switch so I just change channels. Same with the lead tones. At any given moment I have 3 options with a single stomp and all 4 with a second stomp. It's fast and I don't have to think about it. Keeps the floor clear of pedals and cords and such too.

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have the Katana users here also heard the advice to set the master at 10 and use vol and gain from there? I tried it and it does some really cool things, and there's lots of headroom too.

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Have the Katana users here also heard the advice to set the master at 10 and use vol and gain from there? I tried it and it does some really cool things, and there's lots of headroom too.

 

I haven't heard that and I've been setting my master volume up around 11 o'clock to noon. 10 as in "all the way up"?

 

I have noticed that having the master up where I've been putting it makes the amp sound more like a small tube amp turned up than having it lower. It makes sense that pushing it farther would continue to go in that direction.

So I'll have to give that a try, now that I'm more or less stuck in my humble condo and gigs (if there are any) have moved indoors. I don't plan on playing indoor gigs this winter, not a safe place to be.

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Master on 10 as in all the way up, yes. In my home room situation I usually keep the amp on the .5 watt setting, master dimed, and vol/gain to taste. It definitely adds something extra and I like it... ymmv and all that.

Lately I've been experimenting more with pedals, but I mostly just play through the amp, most often clean.

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Master on 10 as in all the way up, yes. In my home room situation I usually keep the amp on the .5 watt setting, master dimed, and vol/gain to taste. It definitely adds something extra and I like it... ymmv and all that.

Lately I've been experimenting more with pedals, but I mostly just play through the amp, most often clean.

 

I'll try it and see what happens, thanks!

On my Peavey Vypyr amps I turn the Post Gain knobs up all the way more often than not. That is the "Output Gain" simulator, not "After Gain".

The Master gets set where I want the volume. Different system but it sounds like Boss incorporated their own output gain circuit into their master volume control.

 

I'd have to redo my settings but there's only 4 of them so just a few minutes of re-tweaking. I'll come back after I've tried it and post.

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...