DAMAGE 120 – ENGL Savage 120
Genres: Any genre requiring mid to high gain
Uses: Rhythm, Lead, Crunch
SCORE: 8 / 10
I have always enjoyed the tone of the Engl Savage so its inclusion in Thermionik was another thing to catch my eye initially. Engl amps have been done and back again so I have tried more than a few. They are associated with high gain usually but they are so much more. These highly regarded German amps always have great crunch regardless of the amount of gain.
The Engl Savage has been a popular amp in metal for a good while. If you listen to any type of metal, chances are you have heard the Savage 120 on more than a few albums.
First, if you use a boost like a TS etc, you may want to watch the tone/treble additions and bring the level on the boost back a bit, you will have better luck. The 0-10-10 settings will over brighten and make the mids harsh. Any “bright” type switches in your signal chain should be engaged with care. The Damage 120 is such a uniquely voiced amp. If you get crazy with the presence and high end of things, you will end up with a mess.
It took me a bit to find the sweet spots and an impulse that really meshed well with the sim but when I did it was really fun to shred on. The sim like the real deal and pushing the gain passed 7 or so will just make things noisy and degrade the tone. With the gain between 4 and 6; the tone is incredible no matter which channel you are on. There’s a really nice crunch even without adding a boost. I used the TSE 808 with my usual settings cut in half which seemed to push the amp nicely without having things get bumpy. Audified’s Multi-drive pedal pro also came in really handy.
Like many high gain amp sims, the Damage 120 benefits from some pre-EQ and general processing. I found that saturating the signal before the limiter just a little warmed things up just enough to really pull the best out of the sim.
I used the impulsive loader as always. I like to start with like branded impulses with any sim but I didn’t overly like it with a bunch of my Engl options so I branched out. The 3 Sigma Audio EVH Stealth 412 sounded perfect when I gave it a go. A bunch of my EVH impulses also sounded great with the Damage 120.
UPS / DOWNS:
It’s touchy and it can get a bit noisy at higher gains but if you take your time and choose the right impulses, the Damage 120 can be a very valuable high gain sim for your arsenal.
Posted Dec 1st 2018