M2CP – Mesa Boogie Mark IIC+
Genres: Rock, Metal, Prog, Punk, Ska-punk, Thrash + more
Uses: Rhythm, Lead, Crunch, Clean
SCORE: 8.5 / 10
The Mesa Mark IIC+ is sort of the amp that changed the game for high gain and some would say the amp that really put Mesa Boogie into the upper echelon of amp builders. This amp was a key piece of gear for a lot of very good bands with very good tone.
You wouldn’t think the Mark IIB and IIC+ would be far off given their names are so close but they really are quite different. The M2CP/Mark IIC+ is a monster. This is a very cool sim that sounds pretty close to the original. The tones I was finding also led me down memory lane. Dream Theater, The Offspring, Metallica, NOFX and more high quality tones came pretty easy.
This was John Petrucci’s go to amp for a lot of years and his signature Mesa Boogie amp has a great deal of the MKIIC+ inside it so using the M2CP for Dream Theater tone chasing would be a good start. It was also a huge part of the 80s thrash movement, 90s skate punk scene and so many other genres. Spend the time and you can get there with the M2CP.
There’s really nothing this amp can’t do. It’s a versatile beast on every channel. Great cleans, solid trademark Mesa crunch and a lot of gain to work with. Mesa amps always require some time to really dial in with all the options so be patient and you will eventually get where you are going. I really like the wall of sound that you can create with this sim without a whole lot of processing. Two tracks of the M2CP sounds like four because of the depth in the tone. Big chords also stay clear at even higher gains which is a good sign for any amp sim. I used it with a few boost plugins and a variety of 112, 212 and 412 impulses and it wasn’t hard to find a lot of good matches. The best impulses for it ended up coming from the 3SA Friedman 412.
Like every other Mesa Boogie amp sim, this one boosted really nicely. With just the right TS settings, you can really harness and accent the best parts of any Mesa amp. The M2CP sounded best boosted with the TSE 808, 1-6-6 left to right.
UPS / DOWNS:
I like the way this amp was modeled and it’s full of really nice natural sounding tones available in it. Make sure to give this a real good look when you buy Thermionik. It didn’t take me much to get all the signature tones the real deal is responsible on