Guitar Amplifier – Buying Guide, Opinions and Analysis
The electric guitar is one of the most used instruments in the world, however, in an open venue performance, if not used with an amplifier, its sound will reach all the audience. For that reason, those who have a guitar should buy an amplifier to enjoy the best sound. A product like the Yamaha GA15II model will give you extra features that will complement your instrument, along with the ability to practice silently with headphones. On the other hand, models like the Asmuse 3W Amp are designed so that you can enjoy portability and ease of use no matter where you are.
The 8 Best Guitar Amps – Opinions 2022
When you go to make a purchase of guitar amplifiers, or any other device, it is advisable to evaluate different options to make sure you make the right decision. Here are some of the most prominent on the market.
electric guitar amplifier
1. Yamaha GA15II Transistor Guitar Amplifier
If you are looking for a versatile transistor electric guitar amp, this model from Yamaha could be a great alternative for you. If you value portability, this small, lightweight device, along with its sturdy top handle, can make moving and storing the product easier. However, these are not its only qualities.
Featuring a traditional black design, this 15W amp offers a complete guitar playing experience and effective sound projection. In addition to its full equalization controls, the product comes with an extra audio input to play MP3 music while you play your instrument, giving you background noise or acoustic and rhythmic accompaniment. In addition to that, in case you want to enjoy the sound individually, it is possible to connect headphones so as not to disturb others with the guitar music.
It is difficult to choose the best brand of guitar amplifiers, however, Yamaha continues to be talked about for its very good quality products.
Headphones: If you want a silent practice session you can use headphones.
MP3: It is possible to play the instrument along with an MP3 player to give you backing music.
Portable: Being a light and small amplifier, its mobilization will be quite simple.
Instruments: Despite being designed for guitars, the product can be used with other instruments.
Design: Its design is completely traditional and this could be a con for those looking for a more modern looking amplifier.
Fender is a legendary brand in the world of guitars, not only for the instruments, but also for their accessories. For that reason, if you are looking for the best guitar amplifier and want a product made by a recognized brand, this model may be ideal. Made to accompany you on practice sessions, this low-cost device has a power of 10W and a 15cm speaker to give you good quality sound. The product has a 3.5-millimeter female jack input and, in addition to that, it gives you the opportunity to connect headphones for silent practice.
In terms of design, the 3.5 kilogram electric guitar amp has a plywood case and a sturdy handle so you can move the amp whenever you need it. The combination of colors between black and silver is contrasting and the brand name on the front area stands out.
In the world of music, everyone knows the Fender brand, because its quality does not go unnoticed. This model represents the reason for the company’s prestige.
Intuitive: The controls for setting up the amp are intuitive so you don’t have to spend a lot of time learning how to use them.
Design: The fixture’s design features the Fender name in silver letters for a sleek, modern look.
Headphones: If you connect your headphones you can enjoy the sound individually so as not to bother others.
Initiation: This product is made for practice sessions as it is an initiation amplifier.
acoustic guitar amplifier
3. Asmuse Amplifier Electric Guitar Bass Combo Instruments
The cost of a product does not determine its quality, and for that reason, this Asmuse acoustic guitar amp stands out, as it is an inexpensive but quite functional product. With 3W of power, this might be the best value for money guitar amp for practice, for its versatility. You can plug a bass into its 1/4″ input or use the 3.5mm jack for a guitar, and no matter what you decide, you’ll still have the opportunity to plug in your headphones for silent practice.
As for the sound, you will have 4 rotary knobs to control the volume, gain and equalize the device properly. In addition to this, an included switch will help you distort the sound or clean it up until it sounds cleaner. If you need to move it, its 490-gram mini structure will make your job easier, while its materials will give it the resistance you need.
This mini amplifier will be your companion everywhere, whenever you need it, since it fits easily in your backpack to give you music without restrictions.
Mini: Its small size makes it easier to move it to your practices or store it anywhere.
Instruments: With this product you will not only be able to connect guitars, it is also suitable for basses.
Price: This is one of the lowest cost amplifiers on the market, making it ideal for saving money.
Power: The audio power could be higher, however, its lightness and great design make up for this feature.
4. Subzero 25W Acoustic Guitar Amplifier with Chorus
With a vintage style that combines navy blue and beige, this product is not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of an acoustic guitar amplifier, however, its design makes it unique so that it is not easily forgotten. With a two channel input, to use microphone and instrument, this product will offer you a complete artistic experience when using it.
For good quality audio, this amp has a 3-band EQ for you to customize your sound and offers a chorus effect to make the result full and quite lively. On the other hand, auxiliary inputs for MP3 or CD players will allow you to use the product as a speaker for certain devices.
In relation to its size, this device is large and weighs approximately 15 kg, however, its durable and resistant handle will facilitate the mobilization of the amplifier.
Those who value design and do not know which guitar amp to buy could find a suitable option in this Subzero model, as it combines style with quality.
Design: The beige with navy blue design gives it a unique, vintage look that stands out among other options.
Channels: This product comes with one channel for your voice and one for using an instrument. That way, you can accompany your singing with melodies.
Handle: The upper handle will make the process of mobilizing the amplifier more comfortable and safe; This way you will avoid accidents.
Screws: It may be necessary to adjust the screws of the amplifier from time to time, otherwise they could interfere with the sound.
mini guitar amp
Good music knows no size or space, and because of that, this mini guitar amp is built to give you great sound anywhere without any extra effort on your part. Weighing less than 1 kilogram and having dimensions of 19.3 x 14.2 x 10.9 cm, transporting or storing it will not be difficult processes and, in this way, you will not have limitations when practicing.
It is possible to use the product with an outlet, however, 6 AA alkaline batteries are required to make it work autonomously for a long time. With a power of 3W and a 5mm jack plug, this product can be adapted to different types of guitars, whether they are acoustic or electric. In addition to that, it has a direct line for MP3 devices and another to connect mobile phones and play music. Its compact and elegant black design will look good anywhere.
In terms of versatility, this could be the best guitar amp of the moment, as it can be used in different ways and anywhere.
Batteries: If you don’t want to use an outlet you can use 6 AA batteries for the amplifier to work properly.
Music playback: The amplifier accepts connections from MP3 devices or mobile phones, so you can play your music.
Portable: This product weighs less than a kilogram and is compact so you can move it everywhere without problem.
Power: The 3W power is appropriate for practicing or beginning musicians, but professionals should look for a more powerful product.
Amplifier for acoustic guitar and voice
6. Roland CM-30 Combo
Definitely, this amplifier for acoustic guitar and voice is not currently one of the cheapest models, however, its quality and performance make it stand out among various options on the market.
Whether you want to use it at home or on stage, this product will fit the occasion giving you 30W of audio power through a 16.51cm coaxial two-way speaker.
For added versatility, this amp is not only functional for guitars, but also keyboards, basses, and even CD, mp3, computer, and recorder playback. Additionally, this handy device is portable and can run on batteries or a plug; Regardless of the way you use it, the sound can enjoy custom effects such as reverb, overdrive, delay or chorus.
As for its appearance, the design, in addition to being elegant, has the turnable buttons at the bottom, while the connections are made at the back.
Its design is classic and its sound is of good quality, as this amplifier provides an adequate hearing result in a small and portable structure.
Power: This guitar amplifier has a power that reaches 30 W so the audio will be clear and strong.
Connections: All the connections you need are made on the back of the amp to give you more organization.
Effects: The different effects of the amplifier will give you a greater range of sound so that you can customize the melody of your instrument.
Cost: This product has a high price and, although it is justified by all its qualities, it is necessary to make a large investment of money.
valve guitar amp
If you are wondering which is the best guitar amplifier in terms of clear and natural sounds, you should consider purchasing a valve guitar amplifier, as the definition of these is greater than that of a transistor model. This specific product has 15 watts of power and a “vintage soul” to stand out in any place, since not only does the appearance of the device resemble that of the 60s, but also its unique sound.
For a more effective configuration, the controls are simple but quite complete. You’ll be able to customize the gain and equalize the sounds until you reach the tone you want, without affecting the audio quality. With the top handle you can transport this 71.4 x 38.6 x 55.6 cm and 21 kilogram amp to the stage to show off your guitar skills, using effects such as tremolo and reverb.
Both the style and sound of this amp are distinctive, retaining the details of ’60s music today.
Valves: The amplifier’s valves give a clean, lively and highly resonant listening result
Sound: Lovers of the sound of the 60’s will enjoy this amplifier, as it is faithful to the style of the time.
Design: The style of this product has been made with the 60s in mind, so its design stands out everywhere.
Sound: Although that characteristic sound of past decades is preferred by many, others may see it as a disadvantage.
portable guitar amplifier
A portable guitar amp is the best option for those who need to be on the go and take their sound with them, and Ammoon has created a product specifically for this. This small and portable gadget weighs only 962 grams and, with dimensions of 21 x 20.8 x 11 cm, it is easy to store anywhere. However, this size and lightness do not affect its great quality and versatility, which is why it is still considered one of the best guitar amps of 2022.
Being able to work with a plug or with 6 AA batteries, this product has several outstanding qualities. For example, it is possible to use the different connectors to play sound from mobile phones, mp3 devices, and you can even connect a microphone.
If you want silent practice, then just use your headphones. On the other hand, the included effects such as reverb, chorus or tremolo will give your sounds unique touches to make you stand out everywhere.
This is one of the cheapest and most versatile options you can find, therefore, it may be a good idea to acquire it.
Batteries: Batteries can be used instead of an outlet, if necessary. This makes its use more practical and versatile.
Headphones: By using the headphones you will be able to have a silent practice session to avoid disturbing others.
Microphone: You can connect a microphone to the amplifier and use it to sing karaoke with your friends.
Charge: If you use it with batteries, these could discharge quickly in one session. For that reason, it is advisable to use them in certain cases only.
The key to enjoying a good sound when playing your guitar is to choose the right amp for what you need, but if you have no idea what aspects to take into account to make the choice, it is better to know the most important characteristics about these artifacts and choose the best one for you.
The first thing you will notice when making a comparison of guitar amplifiers, even before how much it costs, is the design and structure of the device. You need to know that these characteristics should not be the only determining factors when buying your new amplifier, however, it is necessary to take them into account because they are relevant and will facilitate various aspects.
There are many designs, however, the most classic are those of black color and square structure. If you want a more modern design, you can also find it, since there are brands that manufacture models in other colors and with bright details. In addition to this, it is preferable to buy amplifiers that have connections in the back to have more organization and a more professional front appearance.
In addition to the design, the structure has other qualities that are worth noting, such as its dimensions and weight. The smaller the amplifier, the easier it will be to store it in any corner of your home and, for its part, the mobilization will become more comfortable as well. The latter can be complemented with a resistant handle to have an optimal grip and a light weight so that you do not have to make more effort than necessary.
What really brings an amp to life is its sound quality, so this is one of the most important things to consider. Fortunately, it is possible to find a good and economical alternative that values the sound and whose cost is not very high. You just have to know exactly what to look for.
The power is what will determine the range of sound that an amplifier can achieve and for that reason it is so important to know what power is the one that best corresponds to the activity that you will perform. You will be able to find 3W power amplifiers like others with a power greater than 100 W.
Those products that have between 5 and 10 W of power are ideal for practicing, since they are considered mini. The higher the number, the better resonance and projection, so if you need a device for a concert, you will need the most power possible.
On the other hand, it is advisable to buy the amplifier with more buttons, as this only means better sound control. It could have an equalizer with three bands, a gain selector, a volume selector, etc.
In addition to all this, remember that there are two types of amplifiers: tube and transistor. The former have better sound quality, but need more care and there are more restrictions when using them, while the latter aim for comfort and ease of use. Choosing one or the other depends only on your needs, because although the sound of the tube amplifier is better, that does not mean that the audio of a transistor amplifier is bad, since it is still of great quality.
Finally, don’t forget that if you want an instrument-specific amp, it’s better to buy a specialized model than a general one. Although an electric guitar amp can be functional for an acoustic guitar, the sound will be better if you use a model specifically designed for an acoustic guitar.
To finish your guide to buying the best guitar amplifier, after having verified the structure and sound, you can now look at the extra functions that can complement and improve the experience of using one of these devices.
There are modern amplifiers that, for example, allow the use of backing music and even your voice. In this way, if you want to give the product various uses, you can use a music playback device to listen to some melodies and you will also have the possibility of connecting a microphone to sing; that without leaving behind the main objective of giving sound to your instrument.
In addition to this, if you want your guitar or bass to have personalized and unique sounds, some amps have a repertoire of effects to distort or modify the sound of your instrument without affecting its quality. Some of them are reverb, chorus or tremolo. As for the connections, certain models also have space to use effect or loop pedals without any problem; this could take your performance from good to extraordinary.
Frequently asked questions
Q1: How to use a guitar amplifier?
Using it is very simple. To start, connect the amplifier to the current and connect the guitar to it. Proceed to turn on the amplifier and adjust the volume, to be able to equalize.
Continue the process by setting the EQ to Bass, Mid, and Treble until you find the tone you need. Check the gain to increase or decrease distortion, and finally just play the guitar.
Q2: How to make a homemade guitar amplifier?
Before starting the process, get an LM386 chip, a 10 ohm resistor, a 10k potentiometer, old headphones, a 9V battery, and some Perfboard, plus a female Jack connector.
Following the instructions included with the chip, build the electrical circuit without soldering anything at all. First you will have to test that it works to be able to make the welds.
The 9V battery will be attached to pin 3 on the chip, while the negative audio cable goes to ground. For its part, the potentiometer will be the volume control, and will be connected to the electrolytic capacitor and the ceramic capacitor. This will be connected to the small speaker you wish to use.
Place the components on the Perfboard and start soldering. When finished, connect the Jack connector to the audio input, since the guitar cable will be placed there. Find a box or place to place the circuit and that’s it. You will already have a small amplifier.
Q3: How to record guitar amp?
To get started, you’ll need a computer with proper audio recording software, plastic tape, a microphone, a stand for it, and finally an audio interface.
As a first step, connect your guitar, pedals and amplifier, because without this you will not be able to produce sound. Make sure you are in a place where you can use a high volume without disturbing anyone and without creating an echo.
To continue, place the microphone on its base and secure it to prevent it from falling; proceed to plug it into the audio interface. Adjust the microphone base in height until the device can be in front of the amplifier; You must take into account that the microphone must not touch the fabric of the amplifier and must be kept at a distance of 3 centimeters.
Turn on the computer and open the audio program, so you can check the sound gain levels next to the interface. Both on the screen and in the interface, the lights should be green.
Place the mic between the amp cone and the rim for balanced bass and treble sounds.
By following these steps, you can start recording.
Q4: How to test a guitar amplifier?
Pay attention to the body of the amplifier and make sure that all the screws are in place, and that the corners are not dented in any way. In addition to that, check the upper handle and verify that it is not flimsy, as it could prevent the device from falling by accident.
As for the connections, pay attention to the operation of the audio input and output. None should present sound distortions. Additionally, the guitar cable must be connected correctly without generating static noise or being loose.
Finally, when you plug in your guitar, check that the audio is clear and that all buttons, switches, and selectors work properly.
Q5: How to use guitar amplifier as speaker?
Some amps come with mini plug inputs for connecting MP3 devices or your computer. However, if you don’t have one, you can use a plug reducer so that the amp’s cable can be connected to the player you want to listen to music from.
Q6: How to equalize a guitar amplifier?
All amplifiers, as well as guitars, are different and, for that reason, there are no specific rules about equalizing them. The buttons you should be familiar with are the Treble, Middle, and Bass buttons.
Keep in mind what sound you want to get, what genre of music you want to play, etc. The sound should be right for you, so don’t try to follow rules.
The best thing to do is to bring all the buttons to level 5, which is right in the middle. With everyone at the same level, begin to graduate the sound to your liking in highs, lows and mids until you reach the perfect balance.
Q7: How to repair a guitar amplifier?
Guitar amplifiers are devices that are usually delicate, therefore, it is not recommended that you give yourself the task of repairing it in case it is failing, unless you have professional knowledge in these devices and in electrical circuits.
To avoid further damage and to be able to identify exactly what the problem is, it is necessary to have it checked and carried out by a qualified repair person.