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Old 04-05-2011, 10:37 PM   #1
TheBlackening91
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Exclamation Cranked HT-1 vs Quieter HT-5

I'm getting a new amp for my bedroom however the house I live in is terraced, and because of this I can rarely play loudly.
I'm considering buying either the Blackstar HT-5 (or HT-5R) when it's released, or the Blackstar HT-1.
I realize that the HT-5 has some extra features when compared to the HT-1, but I'm not sure it's worth the extra price tag, especially if I'll only be using it in my bedroom, since I have another amp that I leave where me and my friends practice.

So here's the main question - Will a cranked HT-1 sound much better tonally, in comparison to a much quieter HT-5? Or will they sound more or less the same, only with the HT-5 I'll be able to enjoy having a channel switching pedal/effects loop/2 emulated output settings/etc

Thanks
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:06 PM   #2
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The volume difference won't be huge, go for the HT-5 for the extra features.
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:13 PM   #3
TheBlackening91
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Originally Posted by robertito696
The volume difference won't be huge, go for the HT-5 for the extra features.


I'm not so much talking about volume difference, it's just I know that a cranked amp is supposed to sound amazing, but how much different will it be tonally compared to an HT-5 that isn't being pushed as much?
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:19 PM   #4
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Even a crank 1w tube amp wont sound that great. Hell, you can probably still hear you're strings over the amplifier. My only experience with these types of tiny amps was the Jet City Picovalve ($299). It is a 5w amp with a switchable 2w button on the back. The 2w was a perfect bedroom amp when CRANKED (volume at 10). The 5w was good too, when around ~5 volume. At 10 the thing was just a bit too loud to play without disturbing anyone else.

The HT-5 is pretty similar from overhearing someone else playing it, looks like it had a few more knobs. You're never going to get uber metal tones out of such a small valve amp - so it all depends on what you need from it.

Last edited by OceansBetweenUs : 04-05-2011 at 11:20 PM.
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:19 PM   #5
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I'm saying that you won;t be able to crank the HT-1 much more than the 5 because the volume will be pretty close. My HT-5 sounds fine at lower volumes.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:07 AM   #6
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what sort of music do you play TS?

I find that higher wattage amps at lower volumes still sound better than cranked lower wattage amps.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:37 AM   #7
TheBlackening91
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Originally Posted by Tom 1.0
what sort of music do you play TS?

I find that higher wattage amps at lower volumes still sound better than cranked lower wattage amps.


Generally I play metal, my band plays thrash metal but that's about it (nothing too extreme).
I'm 'learning' guitar properly too, so I want a somewhat large range of tones.
As far as I'm concerned though the Blackstar seems to be the only viable option for a low watt tube amp that has some decent gain.
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Old 04-06-2011, 06:49 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OceansBetweenUs
Even a crank 1w tube amp wont sound that great. Hell, you can probably still hear you're strings over the amplifier. My only experience with these types of tiny amps was the Jet City Picovalve ($299). It is a 5w amp with a switchable 2w button on the back. The 2w was a perfect bedroom amp when CRANKED (volume at 10). The 5w was good too, when around ~5 volume. At 10 the thing was just a bit too loud to play without disturbing anyone else.

The HT-5 is pretty similar from overhearing someone else playing it, looks like it had a few more knobs. You're never going to get uber metal tones out of such a small valve amp - so it all depends on what you need from it.

Wait a minute...
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Old 04-06-2011, 09:46 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by bubb_tubbs
Wait a minute...


** Hybrid amp... but the valves are responsible for the clipping.

I tried the HT-1 today, and ordered mine (they sell before they even get them in stock XD).

I find it loud enough for home use, but there's no way you'd disturb neighbours with that thing.

Tone wise, the ISF takes it from nice bright tones to mid-rich British tones.
It has gain and crunch on tap for Black Sabbath, Led Zep, Guns and Roses, Metallica, Alterbridge like sounds. Obviously not much of the kick you get with the big stacks, but the tones I got out of it felt right for the riff. Ohh, and tool's Aenima sounds pretty nice through it.
It is on the vintage side of things though, and an external eq will really open up more tonal possibilities. I was planning to get one anyway.
However, a high gain monster it ain't (although it had more than I was expecting), but I haven't seen anything with more gain at this wattage. Don't expect massive modern metal sounds.

The speaker's its weak link... It will buzz when you crank it on full gain. Nowhere near as bad as some small amps I've played, and won't be as much of an issue as I cut some of the low bass though.
If you can, using an external cab is probably ideal.

In terms of which one to get... depends if you need those features like the foot-switch, extra output option and the effects loop. Personally I didn't bother with the reverb, it's an ordinary digital one not anything fancy.

However, the HT-1 is AU$250 vs AU $600 for the HT5... Not sure what the prices are on your end but it still is a significant difference. I found the HT-1 to be a steal, but the HT-5 was getting a bit more serious
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Old 04-06-2011, 09:49 AM   #10
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If you play metal I would rather have a higher watt amp than a cranked little one.

Metal tone comes from pre amp distortion, not power amp distortion.
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Old 04-06-2011, 09:50 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by bubb_tubbs
Wait a minute...


Is it a hybrid amp? This makes a lot more sense as to why it's gainer than a lot of other amps in its wattage category...

Last edited by OceansBetweenUs : 04-06-2011 at 09:51 AM.
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Old 04-06-2011, 10:24 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by OceansBetweenUs
Is it a hybrid amp? This makes a lot more sense as to why it's gainer than a lot of other amps in its wattage category...


Yes its a hybrid in a way it uses both SS and Tube components in both the preamp and power amp. It still sounds really good tho for what it is. And for its price its definitely worth it.
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Old 04-06-2011, 10:56 AM   #13
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i have the ht-1r head and blackstar 4x08 cab, and its plenty loud and tonefull!!!!!

and it looks cool!!!! lol




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Old 04-06-2011, 11:52 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Danslash
i have the ht-1r head and blackstar 4x08 cab, and its plenty loud and tonefull!!!!!

and it looks cool!!!! lol




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That is a freakin tiny cabinet! Can't believe 4 speakers fit in there. What kind of speakers do they use?
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Old 04-06-2011, 12:52 PM   #15
TheBlackening91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OceansBetweenUs
That is a freakin tiny cabinet! Can't believe 4 speakers fit in there. What kind of speakers do they use?


It's a 4x8 speaker if I'm not mistaken
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Old 04-06-2011, 01:01 PM   #16
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Get the HT-5R if you're gonna go for an HT series.. 12" speaker, reverb, more features...
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Old 04-06-2011, 02:09 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheBlackening91
Generally I play metal, my band plays thrash metal but that's about it (nothing too extreme).
I'm 'learning' guitar properly too, so I want a somewhat large range of tones.
As far as I'm concerned though the Blackstar seems to be the only viable option for a low watt tube amp that has some decent gain.


The HT5 is pretty loud for such a small amp. It is pretty high gain but not full on metal. You can push it with a tubescreamer or whatever though and it grinds.
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Old 04-06-2011, 10:46 PM   #18
baumaxx1
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Yeah, the 4x8 cab uses some sort of custom speaker... but you can use any 8 ohm cab with it. I want to try it with an Orange PPC412. XD
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:37 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danslash
i have the ht-1r head and blackstar 4x8 cab, and its plenty loud and tonefull!!!!! and it looks cool!!!! lol

I realize this thread is 9 months old (just found it) but I'm planning on either getting the HT-1R or HT-5R depending on the volume (affecting the power tube) for best tone vs mainly using the gain for the preamp tube to compensate for lower volume. So for those who have tried both, with a similar gain knob setting how much would the volume knob be at for comparble loudness in the home?

BTW, I really love this photo. The head and cab for the HT-1RH looks so sweet. Now I'm torn between getting the combo or head w/cab!

P.S. There seems to be a controversy if they are really all tube amps or hybrid amps. The Blackstar engineers insist the solid state circuit (op amps and diodes) of the amp are non-clipping and just used to increase gain and control audio levels before the signal path hits the tubes. Any distortion produced is tube generated only, mainly from the preamp tube.
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Old 01-17-2013, 11:55 AM   #20
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i couldn't care less if the blackstar engineers insist the sun orbits the earth, it doesn't mean it's true. we all saw the reverse-engineered diode clipping circuit in the feedback loop around one of the op-amps in the signal path.
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