The Fender Champion 20 is our pick for the best guitar amp, which is at 20 watts for its power. It has many effects and it also has a cable cabinet at the back.
Our step-up pick is the Marshall MG30CFX and it has a 1×10 speaker, has reverb and other digital effects. It has 4 storable channels and has an output of 30 watts.
The budget pick is the Fender Frontman 10G and it is rated at 10 watts. It has many effects like overdrive, treble, bass, gain and others, plus a headphone jack.
- 1 A Little Background
- 2 How we Picked
- 3 Our Pick
- 4 Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
- 5 Step-up Pick
- 6 Budget Pick
- 7 Best Guitar Amp with a Modeling/Digital Design
- 8 Best Guitar Amp with a Combo Design
- 9 Best Guitar Amp for Practice
- 10 Best Guitar Amp for Classical Guitars
- 11 Best Guitar Amp for Recording
- 12 Best Guitar Amp for Electric Guitars
- 13 Best Guitar Amp that is Portable
- 14 The Competition
- 15 Other Frequently Asked Questions
- 16 Wrapping It Up
A Little Background
Guitars that are electric are powered by an amplifier, or guitar amp for short. They are connected to your guitar by the means of a cable, and the signals that come from the strings are converted into electrical signals by the pickups, and is amplified on the speaker part.
This kind of sound device has controls such as an EQ or equalizer. It helps you to control the mix of the guitar or instrument that is connected to it. EQs have 3 usual knobs: for the low frequency, mid tones and high range. Low frequencies are for bass, high ranges are for trebles and mid tones are in between.
It must be mixed properly in order to produce good sound. This is so that it will not sound garbled and have too much clipping. Consult a sound engineer first on how to get the sounds that you want without having to play around with the settings too much.
Guitars are just as good as their players. If you want to get better at guitars, consider upgrading your skills and not just your gear. Your equipment come second when it comes down to producing sound, but you can make great music even if your gear is not that good – it is all about the techniques, precision and determination of the player.
Regardless of the kind of stringed instrument that you have, stage presence is important, as well as your passion for music. You cannot expect to play music if the song or piece is not in your heart. Playing by the notes and by the ear is one thing, but stage presence is another.
How we Picked
In choosing the best guitar amp, you should know the following:
Type of guitar that you have: You should choose depending on what is required by your musical instrument type, as not every amp type can be made for your instrument. For example, classical guitars require a different amp, while acoustic and electric ones will also require a different kind of device for making them work for live stages and performances.
Size: this refers to the size of the amp, which can vary depending on the wattage and the intended area you want to use the device for. Most often, these devices usually have a similar size and can just be stacked on top of each other to create a concert feel.
Wattage and power: amps are usually measured in wattages, such as 10 watts, 20 watts or even 30 watts for the most powerful ones. It really depends on where you intend to play on the musical instrument and what kind of setup you are looking for. Large wattages are meant for those with bigger stages and need to reach more people due to the size of the area, while small venues will be okay for a 10-watt amp.
Knobs and controls: the knob control can define how much you need to consider the adjustability of the whole device. For instance, some may include a more complex EQ than others, while some even have built-in filters for you to play around with.
Number of connections allowed: this refers to the number of devices you can simultaneously connect to the device, which is helpful if you’re on stage or even mixing your own tracks.
Durability of parts and case: Materials can vary depending on the kind of stringed musical instrument that you have and the sound that you want. The durability of the case will ensure that you won’t compromise on both safety and investment in the long run.
Sound quality: you have to make sure that the sound quality is not just awesome, but also easy to tweak to your preferred settings.
As our top pick, the Fender Champion 20 has a wattage of 20 watts and has easy to use knobs. It has a built-in EQ and many effects like reverb, chorus and others. It has clean tones and even harsh tones so you can choose depending on the genre that you want to play. The open back cabinet can be used as a storage area for cables and the like for a neat looking device.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
The only small con but not a deal breaker with the Fender Champion 20 is that the speakers are mostly meant only for practice and for small venues, so you will need a bigger one for big events.
The Marshall MG30CFX is our step-up pick, which has 4 storable channels, a reverb, some effects and a 1×10 speaker. It has 30 watts of power output. It has many digital effects and a bunch of controls, such as volume, bass, middle, treble, gain and a channel selector as well.It is a great choice for those who want a combo amp.
The Fender Frontman 10G is our budget pick, which is good for bedroom practice at only 10 watts. It has an overdrive control and a 6-inch speaker.
Best Guitar Amp with a Modeling/Digital Design
The Line 6 Spider has a digital or modeling design and comes with a lot of effects, such as delay, reverb, modulation and others. It is easy to use and to adjust and comes with classical tones. It has a good bass response and has jacks for CD players or mp3 players as well as a headphone. It is a single channel design that is meant for beginners or for practice purposes.
Best Guitar Amp with a Combo Design
The Blackstar FLY3PAK is a combo amp and comes with its power supply and two channels that are separately made for the clean and overdrive. It has mp3 playback capability and has a 3-inch speaker as well. It also has a digital tape delay effect while it can be converted to either DC power or battery power. It has a 6-watt stereo setup so it is great for playback.
Best Guitar Amp for Practice
The California Amps CG-15 has a 7-inch speaker and is great for practice purposes. Consuming only 15 watts of power, it has great EQ settings and a gain knob. It also has distortion and clean channels separated from each other for better mixing capabilities. The amp is at 15 watts and the EQ controls allow you to mix and clean up your sounds better.
Best Guitar Amp for Classical Guitars
The Donner DEA-1 is meant for classical guitars and has a 1/4 inch input. There is also an input for CD players. It consumes 10 watts and is great for silent practicing. The safety and stability lies in the rubber pads on the bottom to keep it from toppling over. The EQ also allows you to tweak your current sounds.
Best Guitar Amp for Recording
The VOX V9106 Pathfinder is great for recording and has an output that is processed for both headphone and line out. It has a switch between clean and overdrive mode and it has a speaker at 6.5 inches with 10 watts of power. It has good EQ knobs for bass, middle and treble settings and is also great for practicing at night.
Best Guitar Amp for Electric Guitars
The Sawtooth ST-AMP-10ST-AMP-10 is meat for electric guitars and it has a mono jack for input and stereo out jack for headphones. It has an output power of 10 watts and comes with many effects. It has a good EQ for mixing your tone and it has separate volume and gain knobs, even with a drive knob. The speakers are at 6.5 inches for a good amount of power at 4 ohms.
Best Guitar Amp that is Portable
As a mini portable device, the Danelectro Honeytone N-10 can be brought with you anywhere. It has a headphone jack and a leather handle to make it portable. It produces good overdrive and clean tones and has a belt clip. It has an aqua finish that makes it unique from standard black colored devices out there. You can also adjust the tone and volume easily, as well as the overdrive.
Others that did not make it to our list were lacking in controls as well as safety features like instructions for grounding properly. To avoid accidents, your amp should be safe to use and operate.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the different types of amps?
A: The stringed instrument device has the following diverse types to choose from, and all of them work individually and differently from each other:
- Tube device – this type of stringed instrument device makes the use of a vacuum tube. The weight is usually heavy so it is mostly meant for those with big stages or big domes. It is usually much more expensive than other types of devices out there due to the large capacity and the big sound it might produce. They might also have more maintenance time required because they burn out quicker than others. The tube device is a classic, nonetheless.
- Solid state – this type of stringed instrument device is common nowadays and has a good tone. It is very cheap and reliable for its design. It is also consistent for its effects and also very lightweight as compared to the tube device. If you want something more modern with a lot of effect choices, this is the one for you. It uses PCBs (printed circuit boards) already so it is much like a computer on its own.
- Hybrid – if you want the best of both worlds (vintage and modern), consider a hybrid device. This one combines solid state and tube methods, in which the tube system is used for the predevice and the power device incorporate the PCB or solid state technology.
- Digital modeling – this one also uses computer technology, but are more suited for a more diverse set of effects. It can potentially help you to recreate a certain sound in a breeze due to its flexibility of controls and possible emulations. They are also lighter in weight and tend to be cheaper, because they only emulate the effects of certain devices.
Q: How does playing music affect my brain and body?
A: Some people say that music is like a comforting friend, but it is more than just that. Listening to music and even playing musical instruments can have the following benefits for you:
|Great for workouts||This is why most rhythm games in the arcade as well as Zumba classes have been popular in the last few years, because music is a natural motivation for people to break a sweat.|
|Studying||This is because it has been proven by science that certain types of music can get your creative juices flowing and your brain functions better.|
|Memory building||Whether it’s your wedding day, the loss of a loved one, your first date, your graduation day and other memorable moments, there’s always a song that will be involved.|
|Know about yourself||For instance, those attuned with visual arts and creative thinking often like indie, experimental and sometimes electronic music.|
|Better mood for the day||For those at home having a really boring day after breakfast and have nothing to do, perhaps listening to the latest pop hits can make you feel energized.|
|Put all worries away||Music does wonders for you, like get your mood turned upside down, so that you’ll learn to appreciate a different thing instead of worrying about things.|
|Help with insomnia||Insomnia is a really annoying condition, and a great way to help alleviate its symptoms is to listen to calm songs.|
|Relief or distraction from pain and suffering||To help us block pain or ease the pain of anything we’ve experienced, from muscle pains to getting reprimanded by a boss or executive, music serves as a great outlet to help us momentarily forget why we’re upset.|
|Math and language||Whatever your language is, you will be more acquainted with the construction of language as well as read and write stories better if you get into music.|
In the same way, some musicians also ace math subjects, or are somehow good at it. This is because making music involves a lot of measure counting and proper timing.
|Better focus||Look for a nice playlist in Spotify or iTunes and you’ll definitely find it much easier to work on your project or whatever task you are doing.|
Q: What do beginners usually fail to do when they practice stringed instrument?
A: Beginners who are still learning how to play stringed instrument may have the following failures:
- Tuning their stringed instrument – tuning it properly before any performance or practice won’t cause any kind of disruptions or awkward mistakes while on stage, while playing or performing. This is a common mistake that most beginners make because they get lazy or just forget about it.
- Setting a goal – Try to set a goal for yourself within a set period of time, so that you will grow both as a musician and as a person. For instance, if you began with pop songs first, you might consider taking jazz next.
- Practices – Most people skip practice, because it can be boring and tiresome, especially since you will get sick of the same song all over again. But if you want to improve your skills, the best way to do so is to practice, practice and practice!
- Accuracy – You don’t have to play fast just because your favorite musical instrumentalists does so – accuracy is important first, then you can work on the speed later.
- Messing with the equalizer – sound engineers know that too much volume on all the knobs can result in distortion, so you shouldn’t touch those knobs unless you have some knowledge with mixing.
- Commitment – if you really love something then you should stay committed to it! Most beginners quit beforehand because they don’t really like playing after all, or they find it difficult.
- Visualization – They don’t know what exactly they want, but they should ask themselves the purpose of their learning, and why they should keep going. Many reasons can be valid, as long as it’s what you want, such as:
- Wanting to become a songwriter (or singer-songwriter)
- Playing for a show band (and making money out of it)
- Getting the girls (which most people usually associated with stringed instruments, anyway)
- Serving as an outlet for depression, anxiety or boredom
- Want to be seen on TV or on the big stage and make a difference
- Determination – most people fail to learn the stringed instrument because they give up too soon and too quickly. Just because you feel that it’s different at first doesn’t mean that you should call it quits.
- Direction – some beginners quit because they don’t know what to start with, because there are thousands of tutorials on YouTube that might confuse them. The solution: get one solid teacher or ask one around your area and stay focused in the same way as a boy band would – One Direction.
- Patience – being impatient is always a problem with beginners because they get so insecure with other people who are already good at it.
Q: Which stringed instrument is best for beginners to start with: classical, acoustic or electric?
A: Most beginners are confused on which instrument to start with. Some people suggest steel acoustic ones because it is like starting on a manual transmission in a car, starting with the harder one first. On the other side of things, some beginners might find nylon more suitable due to its softness.
Here are the different types of stringed instruments and their properties:
|Classical||As a classic stringed instrument for folk sounds, it is also noted for having a wide neck so it may not be ideal for small hands.|
|Acoustic steel||It is harder for beginners because the plucking component is steel that might cut you off due to pain.|
|Electric||They can be loud as heck for the neighbors, but if you use the headphone jack, you can easily practice without disturbing them.|
In the end, there is really no difference which you choose, as long as you master your techniques well in the end, as both nylon and steel can produce great sounds altogether.
Q: What properties can make or break a stringed instrument amp?
A: If you are choosing this kind of device, you need to be careful and look at the facts. Here are the different aspects that might make or break a stringed instrument device:
|Type of device||There are many types of devices out there, such as solid state, tube and digital ones. Tube is the oldest type and can be heavy, while solid state is lighter. Digital ones are the most price-friendly ones because they are all about emulation.|
|Combo or separate units||This refers to whether you want a combo device or a head and cabinet. If you want something with less weight on your back, the all in one design of the combo type is usually your best bet as compared to the separate head and cabinet design.|
|Speakers||The size of speakers actually matter. Notice how some old home entertainment systems have 2 smaller speakers and 1 big speaker? This is because larger speakers call for the mid and bass tones, while the smaller ones have a high tone.|
|Location||Depending on where you want to use the device, you should pick a suitable location for it and choose a good size for it as well. Whether it will be for recording, for studio or for live practice or performances, you have a choice at most.|
|Power or wattage||The usual power or wattage of a regular stringed instrument device would be somewhere between 10 and 30 watts, while bigger venues can have as much as 50 watts or even 100 watts for expensive ones.|
|Effects||The effects are an addition, but they can be helpful if you do not want to buy separate gadgets (pedals) for your stringed instrument and just want the effects right on (and you’re not changing effects throughout the song).|
Q: Does price matter in picking a stringed instrument or stringed instrument gear?
A: Do know that musical instruments can be just as good as their owner, even if they are cheaper in price. Some people like to purchase expensive brands, but really, there is little difference. However, here are things you need to consider:
- Don’t go for a price that is too low – that could mean that the quality is compromised.
- Don’t go for a price that is too high – unless you want something from a signature series.
- Oftentimes, the string type is what adds up to the price, so nylon stringed instruments are cheaper.
- Anything that is from $100 to $200 is actually pretty decent for beginners.
Q: What are the properties of the different parts of a stringed instrument?
A: The stringed instrument has many helpful parts and all of them function in a way to produce sounds when you pluck or strum the whole thing. Here are the different parts and how they are important:
|Headstock||Headstocks vary in design between electric and acoustic ones, and some even have holes on them (most don’t). They serve as the place where your strings are tied onto.|
|Fingerboard||The fingerboard is on top of the neck part, and is considered an important component of your musical instrument.|
|Strings||Plucking components can vary in thickness as well as in material, and different musical instruments also have different numbers of plucking components.|
|Position marker||This is made so they know whether they are playing the 7th, the 5th or other chord types or variants.|
|Saddle||It is darker than your musical instrument body and must be properly placed.|
|Body||The body is usually made of a solid or laminated wood material, and can also vary in wood specie.|
|Neck||There can be many shapes of the neck, such as those with a c-shape, u-shape or v-shape, depending on the musical instrument that you have. The neck should be durable, but you should consider the width if you have short hands.|
|Nut||This divides the neck and the headstock of your stringed instrument.|
|Cutaway||This is present only in most electric stringed instruments and some acoustic-electric ones, and are characterized by the curved shape on one side only.|
|Sound hole||This gives the acoustic stringed instrument its “acoustic sound” and acts as the sound room.|
|Pick guard||This prevents your stringed instrument body from pick damage.|
|Pickup||This converts your string movement into sound signals.|
|Pickup selector switch||You can select your pickup type (single coil or humbucker) with this switch.|
|Output jack||You can practice quietly with earphones or headphones with this jack.|
|Knobs||These are used for volume and for tone adjustments.|
|Frets||These are where your fingers lay onto to create chords.|
Q: Can the size of the speaker have an impact on sound?
A: Yes, the speaker size of your device is actually proportional to the sound that it makes. Speakers that have smaller sizes and smaller parts produce higher pitched sounds, or also known as the higher frequencies. Mid and low frequencies are found on bigger speakers, on the other hand.
Q: What is an effects loop?
A: The effects loop is a kind of effect or technology that is found on most devices out there. It has the power to make effects like reverb and delay come into action by re-inserting the sound of the note or chord that you play and looping it again and again until it fades as you dictate it to be. There are two types of effects loop systems that can exist with your device:
- Series Effect Loop
|To FX||From FX|
|Send level||Return level||Power tubes|
|Input circuit||Tone, volume||↗||↘||↗||↓|
|Predevice gain 1||Predevice gain 2||Phase inverter||↑|
|FX loop switch|
In a series effect loop, your pre-amp are brought to the send level to the FX. Surf stringed instruments benefit the most from a series effect loop.
- Parallel Effect Loop
|To FX||From FX|
|Send level||Return level||Power tubes|
|Input circuit||Tone, volume||↑||↘||↗||↓|
|Predevice gain 1||Predevice gain 2||↑||Phase inverter||↑|
|FX loop switch|
In a parallel effect loop, it is brought to the FX loop switch first then to the send level. A parallel effect loop is usually much more versatile for a wide range of genres.
Q: What is the usual volume in decibels of a stringed instrument device?
A: A stringed instrument device has the following typical volumes or decibels depending on the closeness to it:
|Distance||1 ft||2 ft||4 ft||8 ft||16 ft|
|Volume||115 dB||109 dB||103 dB||97 dB||93 dB|
Q: What are the most common misconceptions about electric stringed instruments?
A: It is true that electric stringed instruments are a weapon to stardom by many bands and artists, but it is also true that some myths aren’t as true as they are. Here are some misconceptions or myths about electric stringed instruments and what’s the truth about them:
Misconception # 1: Electric stringed instruments that are priced higher are significantly better than cheapos.
Fact: Cheapos don’t always sound bad! There are actually many benefits to owning a less expensive stringed instrument. For instance, you can whack the heck out of them and not worry about your wallet afterwards. Besides, what really makes you good is your skills, not always your gear.
Misconception # 2: Electric stringed instruments from your grandpa’s era sound better than today’s stringed instruments.
Fact: Maybe your grandpa never took a trip to the shop lately and have a look at today’s advancements in technology. Truth is, if your grandpa gave you his old “baby”, you’d have to restore it – and restoring can cost even more than just buying a new stringed instrument yourself! While for historical value and sound quality, they do sound awesome, but the fact that you have to restore them in order to sound good can be taxing on your wallet.
Misconception # 3: Tube devices sound better than today’s digital misfits.
Fact: Actually, most devices today can sound just as good as the tube device, if they are tweaked properly. However, if you really want to get pure sound from tube devices, you’d better hire someone or DIY a custom device for that, because tube devices are about as obsolete as CRT TVs and monitors (they’re both “tube technology”, by the way). Unless you’re a purist, there are many other choices out there other than a tube device, seriously (explained below).
Misconception # 4: Digital devices stifle your creativity.
Fact: Well, they actually enhance the creativity of most artists, because you get a lot of things to tweak and a lot of variables come into play. Digital devices have tons of freebies that your grandpa’s device might not have, such as the following:
- Effects – this can help enhance or add flavor to your sounds. Effects like delay, reverb, phaser, flanger, limiter, compressor, tremolo, wah wah, vibrato and so much more, are up for grabs. They’re available not just on devices, but also most commonly on stringed instrument pedals.
- Recording – one of the best things that the digital age have brought to us is the power of instantly recording anything that you’ve played. Recording allows you to repeat certain parts of the song without necessarily having to get a second stringed instrument player to do the thing. Recording allows you to listen to your own mistakes and correct them as necessary. Recording is super beneficial to musicians, even if they don’t have their own studio.
- Amplification – just because it’s a modeling device (a.k.a. digital device) doesn’t mean that it’s inferior to your grandpa’s tube style device. While it is true that it is only an “emulation” (not the real thing), it can be close, and it is a new technology that is less costly. Think of it as comparing your LCD or LED monitor (or TV) to an old CRT or tube – the principle is the same, but the technologies are different.
Misconception # 5: Music fans love solo parts in a stringed instrument.
Fact: Despite your childhood memories of seeing rock stars being loved and remembered for their lead solos, unfortunately, nobody actually remembers these solos other than those who play stringed instrument themselves. But hey, it doesn’t mean that you should ultimately give up playing stringed instrument! There can be many ways for you to make your stringed instrument sound like it’s singing, which can “wow” the crowd. Or, you can make a song and then use the melody as the lead.
Q: Is it okay to play bass in a stringed instrument device?
A: It is pretty much okay to play different kinds of instruments in a stringed instrument device, since most stringed instrument devices are versatile, anyway, and that is the same and true for bass. There are, however, some things to consider whether you want to play bass in a stringed instrument device, such as:
- Knowing how to set the EQ so that you get more bass lows
- The size of your speaker so that it may be able to accommodate the bass
- The wattage of your device so that it will survive the bass
- Using a limiter setting, if possible, on the device itself
Q: What are the different kinds of effects you can put on a stringed instrument using an device (or a pedal, for that matter)?
A: Stringed instrument effects nowadays can be applied not just to stringed instruments but also to a wide range of instruments. They’re even used in digital audio workstations (in emulation form) and can enhance the beauty of your sound like cosmetics on a woman and spoilers on a car. Here are some of the most common stringed instrument effects that you can get your hands on:
|Delay||Delay is also called “echo” in some cultures, especially for those who grew up in an older music era. It is simply a bounce back of sound from whatever you play on your source. There are two kinds of delays:|
a. Analog – this one makes the use of chips to create a delay effect. They are mostly in the form of pedals but can also be present on some devices.
b. Digital – digital delays have more settings than the analog delay, and can have other things as well and various controls due to its digital nature.
|Reverb||Reverb is classified as the ability to have the repeated sound blur on its own. The reverb simulates the “bathroom” or “large hall” effect, or sometimes known as the “cave” effect. Reverb is often confused with delay, as both of them are echo-like effects. Reverb is ideal for ambient music and adding a soothing feeling to your sound or song.|
|Filter||Filters come in different types: low, band and high pass. They all work differently, but are similar to equalization (EQ, see below) and tweak your sound so that it looks like it’s rising, but the volume is pretty much the same. This is how the three filters sound like:|
a. Low pass (LP) – this sounds like your stringed instrument initially submerged in water and then rising up to the surface.
b. High pass (HP) – this sounds like your stringed instrument heard from a radio station and then the sound quality becomes studio-like.
c. Band pass (BP) – this combines both low pass and high pass, starting from the highest frequency up to the lowest frequency, and vice versa.
|Equalizer||Also called as EQ, the equalizer helps you to find the right mix for your stringed instrument or instrument tune. It has mostly three to four knobs, including the following:|
a. Lower shelf – this is where you want to “pump up the bass” with your stringed instrument. It controls the lower frequencies so you can add more meat to your music or rhythm.
b. Mid range – this is the middle frequency where most vocals and warm tones go into. If your stringed instrument does solos, it will most likely end up here.
c. High cut – this is the higher frequency where things like cymbals and hi-hats go into. Without the high frequencies, you’d be left with a dull sound, but it would help if you want something to sound vintage.
|Phaser||A phaser is that ambient sound that you might hear from most indie music, which is also found on most “wah wah” stringed instruments. It operates using a phase delay technology.|
|Flanger||The flanger is somewhat similar to the phaser, but works on a time based delay instead of a phase delay, but the sound is a little reminiscent of it.|
|Overdrive||Overdrive is an effect that is putting your stringed instrument sound into literal overdrive, by over-amplifying it to create some sort of distortion using a hard clipping technique.|
|Distortion||Contrary to overdrive, distortion literally means what it is – to distort the sound of your stringed instrument. In many ways, overdriven stringed instruments and distorted stringed instruments are often similar sounding, because a little bit of the other effect is present.|
|Chorus||The chorus adds another layer of adjacent sound so that your stringed instrument or instrument sounds like it’s multiplied in two or three.|
|Tremolo||Tremolo means the gradual increase and decrease of volume (the “tremolo bar” actually does the pitch rather than the volume, so it is rather confusing).|
|Vibrato||The vibrato means the gradual decrease or increase of the pitch of a note, making it sound like a singer’s vibrato.|
|Octave||Octave or octave divider refers to the effect gained when you want a single note to get the higher or lower octave in one single play.|
|Fuzz||This effect is a little similar to the distortion effect, but more on a vintage sound experience.|
|Boost||Like the word says, it simply boosts your sound, much like overdrive, but on a less distorted scale.|
|Limiter||The limited limits your sounds, so that it does not sound really distorted, which is important so that your sound system and your recording experience does not go haywire.|
|Compressor||Compressors are much like limiters but instead of just limiting your sounds to a certain decibel, compressors work to “compress” or “sandwich” the sound to get some “oomph” onto it. Compressors are used so that your music won’t sound flat.|
|Ring modulator||This effect is a little less used, but its goal is to achieve a somewhat glitch effect that is not just limited to stringed instruments, but also to various instruments.|
Q: Is it possible to play radio using stringed instrument devices? Why?
A: Unless you will use it as a speaker, stringed instrument devices themselves cannot play radio stations because they lack a tuner, which is found on most radios and phones. The sound quality may also not be that great when it comes down to sound quality from a source or tuner, but that depends on the quality of the device that you have.
Q: What’s the difference between delay and reverb?
A: These two effects are often confused with each other, but here’s how to tell them apart:
Reverb – also known as the “cave” effect or “bathroom” effect, it gives your sound a more wet-like feel as if you’re listening to it from a distance or from a mountain.
Delay – this effect repeats your sound over and over until a certain period of time, and has a sharper initial sound compared to the softer reverb.
Q: Why should you not record with reverb?
A: Recording reverb is okay for most people, but for professional recording purposes, it should not be done because if you decide not to put reverb in the first place, it will be hard for you to redo the whole recording all over again. This is why otherwise there is a need for it (e.g. for live sessions), recording with reverb might not be the best idea.
Q: How are overdrive, distortion and fuzz effects different from each other?
A: These three effects that are mainly used for electric stringed instruments have the following differences:
|Refers to amplifying the source to the point that it becomes violent sounding.||Refers to adding distortion to the source, often combined with overdrive.||Refers to a vintage like distortion, that is only found on fuzz devices.|
Q: How are flangers and phasers different from each other?
A: Both flanging and phasing are two similar effects for instruments, but they also have differences:
|Uses a time based delay to create a wah wah effect for stringed instruments.||The wah wah effect is wider and based on a phase delay.|
Q: How are limiters and compressors different from each other?
A: Compressors and limiters are two effects that can be found on mixers and on stringed instrument devices. They have the following purposes:
Compressor – this scrunches up your sound so it is like a sandwiched pack of melodies. It is often used to add some meat to your music, and is often used nowadays for electronic music.
Limiter – this simply limits the volume of your sound so that it does not go past beyond a certain decibel to avoid clipping distortions and provide a cleaner sounding mix.
Q: What initial things should I check first if my device doesn’t work or stops working in the middle of a gig?
A: The device not working can be a scary experience at first, but you can check the following things to make sure the setup is okay:
- Is it plugged properly?
- Is the device turned on?
- Is it on standby mode (if applicable)?
- Is the device on mute?
- Is the device connected to the speakers?
- Is the volume knob turned all the way up?
- Is your stringed instrument volume also turned all the way up?
- Is your stringed instrument properly plugged to the device?
- Is there enough electricity or power on your venue?
If none of these solved your problem, get the soundman right away and ask what’s wrong with your stringed instrument or your device.
Wrapping It Up
Overall, we think that the Fender Champion 20 is our pick for the best guitar amp due to its balanced power rating of 20 watts, extra cable cabinet and various effects to choose from.