Gain lower, channel volume higher gives you more punch. And as others have said, use presence and resonance for the overall feel and aggresiveness of the amp. A TS like drive can add sustain to the clean and crunch modes, and tighten up higher gain. I've not bonded with the dsl, preferring JVM or older Marshalls. I think the DSL sounds much better when louder, but the gain tones beat Mesa any day of the week.