Guitar amps are currently gracing the market these days, with new ones being introduced one after another. This makes finding the best and high quality guitar amp not as easy as it used to be a few years back.
This is the reason why we have taken the time to browse through several options available, with the intention of identifying the best. Each model you will see in this review is considered as best in their own way. Some feature a lot of effects, some known for their versatility, while others are known for their compactness or convenience.
What is the Type of Amplifiers Available?
Generally, there are four types of amplifiers: tube, solid-state (analog), modeling (digital), and hybrids.
Tube amps are preferred for their warm tone and organic distortion. Most tube amps come with separate channels that easily switches from clean to distorted tones almost instantly. Since tube performance deteriorates through time, it may need occasional change.
Solid-state amps use transistors for their preamp and power features. They usually produce a very clean tone, even though there are some models that come with distortion features. Most solid-state amps are ideal for lower cost practice options.
Modeling amps utilize digital processors in simulating the sound of tube technology. They put the sound of various amps in a single box. Some models include analog or digital outputs with speaker simulation for directly going into a recording interface or a PA system.
Hybrid amps bring all the best features of all amp types mentioned above, in a single package—these types of amps a tube along with a solid-state power section. Most hybrid amps use a tube in their preamp section and a solid-state circuit for the power section. As a result, it creates a tube tone without the need to use power tubes.
Benefits of Guitar Amps
There are a lot of reasons why you might want to consider getting a guitar amp. Here are some of them:
Give a different sound and feel to your guitar
High quality guitar amps form a part of the team with your guitar. They seem to create an inseparable combination tone generator. As you get a guitar amp, your guitar will both feel and sound like a whole new different instrument.
Most modern guitar amps come with features. While volume and tone are the foremost factors, other extra features that can enhance the quality of sound produced include an effect loop, line outputs with speaker emulation, and external speaker outputs.
Reviews on the Top 10 Best Guitar Amps in 2020
To help you decide which guitar amps are best for you, we have listed the top 10 best guitar amps in 2020. All of them match the current standards set among products in this category.
1. Fender Champion 100
Best Amp for Home Use
- Fender is known for its reputation of creating some of the most popular guitars and amps. The Champion 100 features 2 12-inches speakers powered up with 100 watts blasting in them.
- It features a 2-channel output that enables you to easily switch between overdrive and clean channels. It is a simple amp to use, without extra features.
- This amp produces a sound that is clear, crisp, and powerful, making it perfect for jamming with a band or for home use.
2. Marshall MG30CFX Guitar Combo App
Perfect for Beginners
- This 10-inch speaker offers a powerful punch of 30 watts, ideal for professional players who use it in intimate settings. With its critically famous analog tonal circuitry, combined with digital FX, Marshall MG30CFX Combo Amp is an amazing bargain.
- In terms of audio performance, this amp produces an amazing sound which can keep you interested for more. It features foot-switching technology, digital effects, as well as four programmable channels – OD1, OD2, Clean, and Crunch.
- Design-wise, it features a carbon fiber-clad appearance with a black meshed cloth. It features metal plates on all its corners, giving it strength and durability while sporting a masculine and charming look.
3. Fender Mustang LT25
Most Versatile Amp
- This versatile amp offers exceptional sound customization potential that comes from several sounds and preset effects. It features 20 open sound banks, 30 integrated presets, 20 amp types, and 25 effects. This also includes several distortions, modulations, drivers, octaves, reverbs, compression, delays, and more.
- It also features USB connectivity and onboard tuner, allowing you to do whatever you want to do with it, record, plug, and play, search for tones, and others. As a bonus, it even comes with a very durable cabinet, adding to the convenience that it offers.
- While this amp can be taken to a rehearsal as long as your drummer is not too loud, it may not be designed for larger venue gigs. With its 25 watts, it is perfect for use during practices at home.
4. PRS MT 15 Mark Tremonti
Best Hard Rock and Metal Amps
- The MT Mark Tremonti amp is described as a 2-channel, “lunchbox” amp that is powered by two 6L6 output tubes, as well as six preamp tubes (12Ax7). It features 5 gain stages for lush and full distortion.
- Even though this amp is designed for heavier players, such as the Tremonti Axeman and Alter Bridge, it offers a wide range of tones for different guitarists who work in a variety of styles.
- Other features of this amp include the bias adjusters, effects loop, all of which are accessible from the amp’s back panel. It also a half-power switch that easily brings the amp from 15 to 7 watts.
5. Marshall Acoustic Soloist AS50D
Best Acoustic Amp
- As a brand, Marshall is mostly known for their ability to feed the needs of those in the hard rock and metal scene. With the Acoustic Soloist AS50D model, however, they have taken their powers a level higher. This guitar amp is perfect in an acoustic setting.
- This amp features great tones and effects that will easily make your guitar sound excellent. This is made possible by its pair of 8-inch woofers that offer deep bass tones.
- It also comes with a poly-dome tweeter that gives it crystal clear trebles. A microphone can be plugged into the amp if you need some vocals to lay down, or for easier playing with friends.
- With its stereo RCA inputs, you can easily connect drums and mp3 players.
6. Behringer Ultracoustic At108 Instrument Amplifier
Best Budget Amplifier
7. Peavey Vypyr VIP Modeling Instrument Amplifier
Best for Modern Progressive Metal Guitars
- The Peavey amplifier features a power amp section that is powered by four JJ 6L6 tubes. It works in providing 120 watts of output. Its six 12AX7A tubes offer gain for the crunch/lead channels and clean channel and phase inverter with loop driver functions.
- It features a three-channel design. However, it is not limited to only three basic tones. The Clean channel section offers Pre Gain and Post Gain controls, a boost function, low, mid, and high EQ levels and drive controls.
- The rear panel is also filled with essential features, such as the full/half-power switch, pair of ¼ inch parallel speaker output jacks, and an impedance switch.
- Overall, this amp is packed with a variety of tones, ranging from the cleanest to amazing dense distortion textures. It is designed to satisfy the desires and needs of modern progressive metal guitarists.
8. Pyle-Pro PVAMP60 Amplifier
Best Practice or Backup Amp
- Even though generally, this amp is not a big-game player, it is a solid option, especially for those who are looking for a backup or a practice amp. It is a small amplifier that is priced below $100 with a 60-watt power rating.
- In terms of audio performance, this amp offers amazing clear sound without using any secondary device. While it is also a nice vocal amp, its three-band EQ offers different options for controlling midrange, treble, and bass tones.
- Design-wise, this amp is small and looks traditional. It is the grainy, black finished casing, along with its silver grille cloth offers a classic and luxurious design. It also features silver knobs on its white panel, adding to its overall style. The silver clamps on its edges also offer better stability.
9. Fender Vintage Bassman ’59 Reissue
Best for Jazz
- If you are looking for an amp that will fit the pristine and substantial tone of jazz, the Fender Vintage Bassman ’59 Reissue amp is a good option to take into consideration. It features plenty of headroom and volume, which means that you do not need to push too far into distortion upon reaching higher volumes.
- This series offers a lot of warm and clean sound, offering professional-level quality that is unrivaled by any modern maker of amps. It has 50 watts of pure tube power that is pumped via four 10-inch speakers.
- Design-wise, this amp comes in a finger-jointed pine cabinet that features a lacquered tweed cover, adding to a classic and stylish look.
10. Line 6 Spider 120 MKII
Best Digital Amp
- Some musicians prefer using pedals rather than digital amps when looking for their unique ‘voice.’ Still, there are others who prefer using digital amps over tube type options. For those who belong in the latter category, the Spider V 120 MKII amp is the best option to consider.
- It offers a real powerhouse of features powered up by 120 watts, which means that it can be used for any type of gig. It also features hundreds of cab and amp presets, drum loops, effects, and everything that you need in order to come up with any tone that you like.
- This amp is not only praiseworthy as the best digital amp within its price range, but is also an amazing option for sound customization, live gigs, and other settings that cover finding your own sound, live performance, and sound-over recording.
How to Choose the Best Guitar Amps
When it comes to guitar amps, there are a lot of options that you can take into consideration. Depending on your purpose of use, you need to make decisions based on several factors. To help you make a wise purchasing decision, we have put together a brief buyers’ guide. It is our goal to provide you with an idea of what is important when choosing a guitar amp.
One thing that should be understood is that not all amps out there are created with the same sound quality. There are tube amps along with solid-state amps. Tube amps get the power from voltage running through vacuum tubes.
On the other hand, solid-state amps deliver their power right through the output devices. As far as users are concerned, tube amps need more long-term maintenance and upkeep, though they provide a realistic and genuine tone to voice and instruments.
The power requirements that you may take into consideration depends on some factors. For example, how loud would you want your amp to be? If you are simply playing at home, then you will only need those powered with 10 to 20 watts.
If you are playing with a band, at least 50 watts is needed. Most of the time, an amp with 100 watts is the safest since it can bring you all the power that you need. Many larger amps for band use feature 100 watts.
Your choice on size also depends on your purpose of use. If you are simply planning to play at home, you can have the bigger ones. However, if you are planning to take one for practices and gigs, you need to find amps that are convenient and powerful.
A smaller version or a 10 to the 20-watt desktop is ideal if you have limited space at home. Amps with 100 watts power can be heavy and big, so it is often recommended to figure out ahead the level of maneuverability that you want to achieve.
If you are interested in having all effects packed into a single amp, you may need a modeling amp that will enable you to upload several different tones. Some amps feature enough tonal power and clarity that when you add effects pedals, they still end up sounding great on standard tone.
Do you want to see effects like reverb, chorus, and delay without purchasing extra pedals? If you choose an amp with multiple channels that can give you the benefits of having several effects, you may save some money on effects pedals.
What is the best guitar amp for home use?
In the list above, the Fender Champion 100 is the best option for home use. It comes with a 2-channel output that allows you to easily switch between overdrive and clean channels. It is a simple amp to use, without extra features.
What is the best practice guitar, amp?
The Fender Mustang LT25, being a very versatile app, is the best practice guitar amp that you can take into consideration.
What is the best battery powered guitar amp?
Even though this model is not included in the list, the Blackstar Fly3 Combo App – 3W is no doubt a good candidate as the best battery powered guitar amp. It is a micro-practice amp, making it ideal for those who are searching for a portable model.
Are tube amps better?
In general, tube amps may all be worth it based on the application. The vacuum tubes in tube amps can produce different subtle sounds according to the style of every guitar player, which is why the same amp can create two separate styles of different players. On the other hand, solid-state amps are crisper and do not respond to the nuances of a player.
With the number of options that are currently out right now, we have done you a favor by picking up the crème of the crop, sifting through the different options for you. Decide on the features that you need, and compare them with the ones featured above. At the end of the day, we are sure that you will be able to find one model that will satisfy your needs and preferences.