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Author Topic: What's your favorite "practice" amp?  (Read 5666 times)
Walkerman
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« on: June 01, 2010, 06:51:49 PM »

You know, those itty bitty ones.....are there any good ones available?
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2010, 07:06:45 PM »

How much do you want to spend? These interest me. 4 or 0.4 watts. Of course, you'll need a speaker(s).

http://www.mackamps.com/gem-head-combo/

I just ordered one of these. Good for just running right into the board. Carry it in your pocket. Works as a DI for your acoustic too!   

http://www.tech21nyc.com/products/sansamp/paradriverdi.html

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ronmac
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« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2010, 07:31:03 PM »

Duck, you're gonna love the DI.

I am a huge fan of Tech 21 products, and have used their DIs, Sans Amp modeling racks and amps.

This one (60W 1x12) doesn't qualify as "itty-bitty", but it's not too large and has tons of tone (with lots of variety, from a soft purr to scratch your eyes out).


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Ron

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« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2010, 08:41:19 PM »

I can't wait to get it. I've been using a Boss GE-7 for a long while and wanted to try something different. I can't wait to try it with the RS-4 right into the PA. That sure would make for a light rig!   
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2010, 08:44:02 PM »

Having played most of the 5 watt amps out there at some point or another and finding them very limited my I suggest to you something in a little Fender.Like a champ,a champ 12,which I have and is really a Riveria,Printon reverb,which I gig with.A peavey Classic 20 or 30 both of which I've owned and have used for gigs.All fairly small the Fenders not being loader then 12 watts and the Peavey's are a 15 watt and a 22 watt.Have fun in on you trip thru amp land.
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cc407
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« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2010, 09:31:17 PM »

My Roland Microcube (red!) is reliable, sounds good, runs on AC or battery, and has some fun effects. I also like my 5 watt Gretsch Electromatic tube amp (Just the same amp as a Fender Champion 600)
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Mikeymac
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« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2010, 09:37:05 PM »

It depends how much you want the amp by itself to do. The Vox Pathfinder 15R packs a lot into a very inexpensive and very decent sounding package, for $120. No, it's not tube, but it sounds very good for SS, and I've used it with pedals in front of it (Fulltone Fulldrive 2) for overdriven tones - the overdrive that the amp itself produces sounds harsh to my ears, some people love it and use it live (with a mic in front of it).

Otherwise, as unclrob has suggested, Fender offers a few. Check out their two XD amps, the Vibrochamp VCXD (5 watts) and the Superchamp SCXD (15 watts). Both have built in digital overdrives (12 or 16? different "models"), but there's also a preamp tube to give it some warm mojo...I've never tried one; my brother has one (SCXD) and really likes it, lots of guys swear by 'em.

For straight tubes, you could try the little 600, but I'm not impressed with the tones (the Vox is much better); others like 'em. Then there's the Pro Junior (no reverb, 10" speaker) and the Blues Junior (12" speaker, master volume and gain, AND reverb). The Blues Junior's overdriven tones using the amp alone are pretty much too loud for home use, but they can be heavenly when turning up a little! 

A used silverface Champ or Vibro Champ (I have one from 1980) is a great little amp, but you'll have to add reverb if you want it, and usually I want it for at home, not so much for playing out.

Good luck!
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ronmac
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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2010, 09:39:57 PM »

Another route, especially if you are doing practice solo, is to use your computer with some of the modeling amp simulators. The Waves GTR-Solo is very nice for not a lot of money.
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Ron

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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2010, 09:57:53 PM »

Good point, Rob. I guess I never thought of a Princeton as a "practice amp" but then I practice on my Blues Deluxe. What do we mean by "practice amp" in the first place? If we just mean smaller, I have a little Fender Frontman that is alright and really cheap. If we're talking tubes and smaller size boutique amps, I'm really interested in the Mackamps and will probably be getting one of the 18 watt Heatseeker models before the year is up. The Gem is awfully cute, too. Did you listen to some of the samples? Neat little unit. Cheaper than the better known boutique amps but not cheap.    
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Walkerman
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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2010, 11:41:33 PM »

I'm just wanting one of those little cube amps that I can schlepp around the house, up and down the stairs, in and out of the yard, to make my guitar sound like it is electric when I want to fool around.  Not for small groups, coffee houses etc....just for some practicing by myself. 
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2010, 02:02:32 AM »

I would look for something that at least has treble/bass controls.If you want it for the acoustic I can get you a use Ultra Sound AG30 cheap.
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Walkerman
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« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2010, 04:13:10 AM »

I would look for something that at least has treble/bass controls.If you want it for the acoustic I can get you a use Ultra Sound AG30 cheap.

I have an Ultrasound DS3, a Fender Princeton 112 plus and a Mesa Boogie...I just want an itty, bitty cube amp....
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Cybercanyon
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« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2010, 06:47:25 AM »

I have a Line 6 Micro Spider 6W 1x6.5 Guitar Combo Amp.  It’s a SS modeling amp that works great with my RS4s.  It even has a setting for electric acoustic guitars which sounds good as well.  Its small, runs on  AC or battery and has a loud voice for it size.  It has lots of controls and effects.   It is very easy to carry on my wheelchair.  It’s my favorite portable practice / all around fun amp.

An even smaller amp I have is the Danelctro Honeytone N-10 Guitar Mini Amp.  It’s really small, runs on a 9 volt battery and fits in the palm of your hand.  It’s very inexpensive and I like it for its cost and size.  I prefer using the Line 6.  I use the N-10 only for quick testing and experimenting.


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cc407
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« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2010, 10:44:55 AM »

I'm just wanting one of those little cube amps that I can schlepp around the house, up and down the stairs, in and out of the yard, to make my guitar sound like it is electric when I want to fool around.  Not for small groups, coffee houses etc....just for some practicing by myself.  

Then the Roland Microcube mentioned or Vox DA5 would do you well - plus you can put a guitar strap on them and sling them over your shoulder.
Either can give some nice effects or  a pretty good acoustic sound on the mic or acoustic sim settings.
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Michael T
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« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2010, 12:08:34 PM »

I have a Mackie that weighs next to nothing & puts out incredibly clean sound. Not Battery Powered though.

http://www.mackie.com/products/srm150/index.html
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Walkerman
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« Reply #15 on: June 02, 2010, 01:28:49 PM »

It looks like a toss up between the Micro spider and the Roland microcube.  The spider has a bit more power and bigger speaker.  And they both are AC/battery powered.  Same size/weight.  Does anyone know if you can use effect pedals with either or both of them?
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Mikeymac
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« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2010, 03:05:18 PM »

It looks like a toss up between the Micro spider and the Roland microcube.  The spider has a bit more power and bigger speaker.  And they both are AC/battery powered.  Same size/weight.  Does anyone know if you can use effect pedals with either or both of them?

Why couldn't you? There are no rules when it comes to electric guitar...  cop
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bluesman67
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« Reply #17 on: June 02, 2010, 06:14:27 PM »

I've got a Roland minicube.  It's a great  little amp.  It hardly gets used for my acoustic, once in a great while and it sounds pretty darn natural.  Come to think of it, I don't use it hardly at all.  But it's been used for my acoustic and my stompbox, also it's been used a few times as a PA.  It's got quite a few onboard affects so I doubt you need to hook any up to it.  It's got reverb, chorus, and delay.  Plus, it's got these channels that shape the tone from clean to 4 or 5 levels of dirty.  Good for acoustic or electric.  Works well on battery power.

I thought the beauty of acoustic is that you never need to play with a practice amp!
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Walkerman
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« Reply #18 on: June 02, 2010, 07:02:33 PM »

I've got a Roland minicube.  It's a great  little amp.  It hardly gets used for my acoustic, once in a great while and it sounds pretty darn natural.  Come to think of it, I don't use it hardly at all.  But it's been used for my acoustic and my stompbox, also it's been used a few times as a PA.  It's got quite a few onboard affects so I doubt you need to hook any up to it.  It's got reverb, chorus, and delay.  Plus, it's got these channels that shape the tone from clean to 4 or 5 levels of dirty.  Good for acoustic or electric.  Works well on battery power.

I thought the beauty of acoustic is that you never need to play with a practice amp!

It's for my electrics
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bluesman67
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« Reply #19 on: June 02, 2010, 07:40:58 PM »

Oh that makes sense, I should have realized.  I think you would like the minicube for that.  But, if you really want to know what my favorite practice amp is for electric, then I would have to go with a Crate Vintage Club, I've never heard a better little tube amp.  Built in St. Louis, I don't think they've made it for years but you might find one on ebay for a couple hundred.
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