How to Buy an Amp: A Guide for the First-Time Buyer
Buying a guitar AMP is not an easy job. There are quite a lot of things that you have to look after while picking up a guitar amp. Just because an AMP sounds great does not mean they are the best one you have come across.
Hence to help you to choose the best guitar AMP, let me mention some of the points that you should keep in mind while picking up a guitar AMP.
Things to consider while buying a guitar amp:
Playing an amp with an instrument that you do not own is something that may not be the best thing to do while picking up an AMP. As it will not help you to figure out the real sound and performance that you are looking for. So in case if you are purchasing an AMP make sure to take your main guitar along with you. And then test the AMP so you can get a proper idea.
02. Tube, Solid-State or Digital?
AMPS with tube are an old thing. Although there are quite a lot of people who still prefer them. But if you are going to get your first amp do not focus on getting them. Instead, focus on getting a solid-state and digital amp as they offer excellent tone. However they will cost you some extra bucks, but in the long run, it will be a great thing to have.
03. Size Matters
While buying an AMP, you should also focus on the size. If you want an amp for home recording, then a 10-watt combo would be a perfect option for you. Where a 100 watt amp would be overkill. Also if you are planning to play with a rock band, then you must get a 30 watts AMP for live performance.
04. The sound of power
Distortion usually gets generated by three distinct sources. These sources are the power amp, the preamp, and the speakers. However, there are so many players out there who overlook power amp distortion while picking up an AMP. But the thing is that the sound should be lively and must have crispiness in it.
05. A Righteous Buzz
Don’t get an amp that makes a buzzy sound. How about figuring it out by putting the amp’s preamp, or gain, controls at low volumes. And after that putting them into high volume until you reach to the sound level you usually play at. Then if it makes a buzzy sound you should not go for it. If there is no such thing you have found the one you need to pick.
06. Happ’nin’ Crunch
You should also get something that offers you a great crunch. The best way to figure this out is to dial the amp to the clean setting then turn the volume up. In this test, the low watt speakers break up at the low volumes. And the high watt speakers do not break up in most of the cases. Overall you should focus on getting a speaker that sounds lively at all the levels you play at.
07. Channel Surfing
If you are someone who is going to play different tones, then a multichannel amp would be a great option. But in case all you need is a good clean sound and a good distorted sound, then you may need more AMP. However, for an average use, three or more channels is the right one. Also, you should look for an AMP that comes with a separate EQ controls for each channel.
08. Twist Some Knobs
In the end, you should check the AMP by twisting some knobs. You should be able to switch to different sounds easily and without any issues. Also, you should adjust each tone control and note how they are performing. If you are facing difficulties in tuning to a decent tone ten do not go for that amp instead look for something else.
So those were a couple of points that you should keep in mind while choosing an AMP. If you have any more questions, do feel free to comment below, and we will surely help you out.
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