UG Team, on february 08, 2013 3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Price paid: $ 299
Features: Yamaha's THR series is all about quality sounds in a hi-fi environment. It's not about volume, though there's plenty enough to enjoy while jamming in your living room. Think of it as a portable cousin to compliment your regular amp.
This review will focus on the THR10C which emulates vintage tube amps, so if you're after some regular crunch or drive you'll probably want the standard THR10, or for heavier distortion the THR10X.
On this particular model, eight amp emulations, a full range of tone controls and eight effects give you a decent palette of vintage sounds to work with.
An aux lets you play along to your favorite songs, and tech heads might enjoy building presets with the desktop software and syncing it to the amp via USB. If you prefer to keep it old-school, you can save up to five presets on the amp without using a computer.
It would be more at home in... well, your home, than out-and-about. But if you really wanted to take it out then the THR10C can run on battery power, though we haven't tested it and can't say how long it would last.
Finally, a warm orange valve glow illuminates the amp as you play. It's just a shame the fake valve LEDs aren't up to the same standard as its valve sounds. // 7
Sound: The main five amp settings emulate vintage amp sounds, including two dedicated British and American blues amps. They're beautifully clean at low gain, and pushing a little harder dulls the tone in a nice way. It never quite breaks into a full crunchy distortion, but sounds gnarly and moody enough to pull of plenty of attitude in the right context. You'll be very surprised at the low-end weight available from speakers so small.
An extra three 'amp' settings - bass, acoustic and flat - are self-explanatory (Yamaha have since pointed out that the bass and acoustic channels are for those respective instruments, and not an electric guitar).
Some of the eight effects are great, and really benefit from the amp's stereo output - particularly the hall reverb, which is worth a fair chunk of the amp price alone. It's really beautiful. Unfortunately, the same can't be said of the tape delay, which sounds weak compared to the sonic details elsewhere.
Overall it sounds great. We directly compared it with other small amps, and it definitely had a premium depth which other amps lacked, which is probably thanks to having stereo output. // 8
Reliability & Durability: It's sturdy and built well, but not by traditional amp standards. Think of it as a gadget for the home; something to plug into in your bedroom or living room that has a classy design to suit your home decor, and maybe double up as a hifi. But could it survive more than a couple of bumps and scrapes? No way. // 6
Overall Impression: The THR10C is a great little amp, and probably the best-sounding ones at this size.
We all have a 'proper' amp already, but if that one covers you for professional and louder duties, you can think of this as your hobbyist 'fun' amp for jamming at home and pretending to be an old-school bluessmith. It might be a little pricey for something that isn't particularly versatile and doesn't suit live use, but real vintage amps can cost a lot more and may need frequent maintenance. From that perspective, it's a bargain.
If you're in the camp that wants big noise and distortion, go for the regular THR10 (or indeed, any modern amp). But if you're interested in hot, subtle drive that comes straight out of a time machine, this is for you.
Video from YouTube:
Rowley61, on february 15, 2013 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Price paid: £ 247
Purchased from: GAK center Brighton
Features: I think this is new for 2012 model Its based on Blues style & won't give you metal & heavy Rock as there's only 1 channel (although this has 5 amp types as well as bass, acoustic & flat). I play blues, rock & country it does this all really well but if you want any thing heavier you should try the THR10X model. It's perfect for home practice & taking away practice (can be powered by batteries) as its small & lightweight (take on holidays etc).
Has a headphone jack & MP3 input jack - The MP3 is especially good as has its own vol. Controls (guitar & input controls) to balance guitar with a backing track etc. It's expensive for a solid state amp I know but sounds as good as tube or even better dare I say! that's because Tube amps sound great cranked up but that's too loud for my neighbors. This sounds great at domestic levels (Better than my 5w tube amp). Also solid state is tougher for traveling about & maintenance free.
It's stereo speakers sound much bigger & fuller than they look. It comes with soft ware for recording your music on a PC & you can create a file for amp sounds you want to save (you can save up to 5 in the amp). Has a built in basic tuner (std tuning only). EQ controls - Gain, master vol, Effects (Chorus, flanger, phaser, tremolo). Delay & Reverb control (eco can be speeded/slowed with a tap timer) Spring & Hall Reverbs sound nice! Acoustic & Bass amp settings - plugged in my acoustic & its louder than the amp clean so not a lot of use as I don't want to use more gain (not used bass guitar). // 8
Sound: Sound wise... I've said it sounds good, Its surprising how good from such a small amp! But then it's not really cheap so you should expect a good quality sound. I used cheaper solid state portable amps for practice & they're boxy & un-inspiring. This amp cured all of that instantly. No hiss at all when I use my Les Paul & only slight minimal hiss from my Sguire Strat on louder vol.
As I said earlier if you want a heavy gain sound don't buy this amp - try the THR10X maybe, this amp gives a nice clean sound at low vol. & great Blues clean/Break up sound. The stereo speakers with some reverb dialled in are truly impressive! Remember this is all at sociable sound levels its not capable of rattling your windows, but its still FULL sounding & I love it. // 10
Reliability & Durability: Not a gigging amp so doesn't get knocked about much, but I take it away & it's early days but its fine. I mentioned its solid state so should really have no problems. Although I'm a bit disappointed with the plastic sides& underneath. Its metal top & front are nice & so is the back light Grille! The on/off toggle is a bit small & weedy but works nice enough & the writing on the controls doesn't stand out well so is hard to read in poor light. I've only owned this amp a few months so can only go on its looks for reliability & toughness. // 9
Overall Impression: If this was lost I'd kick myself. If it was stolen I'd kick the thief much Harder! Then I'd have to go & buy another as there's nothing else out there yet that does what this amp does. For its size I can't think of a better one that does all it can do. I wish it had a good drum machine built in & a looper! For the same price. Please don't bring one out now I've got this Mr Yamaha! I am still a learner after 3yrs playing so my style is no where near anything like I want - but my ears work just fine & this amp sound good with me so would sound great from you most likely. I own a Blackstar HT5 valve amp its much louder - Heavy to lug about & can hiss a bit with some pedals. But wow it's fun. // 10