Well, I went into Guitar Center to try out the used Smolski in a sound booth. After some tweaking, I was able to get it in the zone. The noise gate actually worked which was surprising. One thing I noticed was the note clarity was a little smeared and the bass hard to dial in tight. Even after a lot of knob tweaking. That may be able to be dimed in with tube swaps, who knows. I think I still prefer my Powerball v.1, but overall a pretty cool amp. Afterward, I plugged into a 5150 block letter that they had sitting in there and I actually preferred it. Tighter low end and clearer on the notes for a fraction of the cost. I'll keep searching for a Savage, if I can find one for a deal, if not I may try a Peavey Invective.