We had some time today to "waste" so Jr and I went to a local music store.
Jr played the most expensive setup of his life - a $2K+ telecaster on a used Friedman that was selling for $2.8K. The two observations he made (he is 12 years old btw).
1) The $400 Mexican Fender Cyclone he also tried felt and sounded better than the expensive Telecaster. And it wasn't just him thinking that, as he started playing Seek and Destroy, other dudes came by the check him and the guitar out.
2) (This is the real killer) Naturally I could not dime that Friedman in a store. And with that nice Marshall 4x12 it was hooked up to, it did NOT sound nearly as good as our Kemper sounds (here) at home.
Obviously I know this, I can play the Kemper at low volumes and still sound good. What was surprising is how much we got used to this. And while I am positive that the Friedman would have obliterated half the town with amazing sound if I could crank that thing, it was really sub-par at that 2-3 that we had to have it. (Just for scientific purposes, the Friedman only went to 10, not 11 so it was probably not the loudest one )
The strange thing is, if we had that beautiful Friedman at home, we still would NOT be able to basically ever enjoy its tone.