There is pair of LA-4a's in my local gear-mega-store, black face. They are asking $2200 which appears to be way too much for it, from what I've been reading. I have a lot of questions about the unit before I go in and try to evaluate it. 1) are the black face ones any better or different that the silver face ones? Along those lines, is there a better year of manufacture that I should look for? 2) Assuming it has not been modified and works, what is the best application for this kind of unit, kick/snare or stereo micing of horns or guitars or singers, bass ... ????? 3) I understand a common mod is switching the op-amp for a faster one that will allow the unit to be hit harder without getting "darker"; once modded in this fasion does this change the range of sources the unit would work on, or just make it better at what it is meant to do. 4) I understand the stereo-linking of the 1176's was problematic (hopefully not so in the new 2-1176), so should I be suspicious of the LA-4a's stereo linking capabilities? Price wise it is not so different from a single LA-2A, clearly the LA-2A is a better and different unit, but right now my only real compressor is a 1176 that is on the side of the 6176. Anyway, any info that would help me evaluate this thing to see if I want it or not would be appreciated.