#1
Hello all, I realize there is a wealth of information about amps on here and I have already read a few threads, but I could use some help from the esteemed UG community narrowing these resources down. I'm heading to Guitar Center today to buy an amp, and really have no idea what to get. Here are "my" specs:

(1) Newbie, just starting out.

(2) Guitar playing style (in my dreams): BB King, SRV (the "slower" stuff), David Gilmour (Marooned, Shine on You Crazy Diamond), Clapton, John Mayer [These are just very few examples to give you a sense. Basically, blues/blues rock.]

(3) Current Gear: See signature

(4) Gear knowledge (1-5 scale, 1 being lowest): 1.5

(5) Inherent musical talent: (1-5 scale): 0.5

(6) Needs in an amp: 90% home practice, live in a townhome with neighbors on both sides so can't really shake the walls. Love a clean tone [Fender?] for BB-like solos, but varied influences and desires (including Gilmour and SRV) suggest some distortion would be good [Marshall?]. Would love a tube amp, not sure I fully understand the whole "partial tube"/preamp stuff yet. Would love a headphone jack so I can practice at night without my wife kicking me out. Not planning on getting pedals any time soon. Also, amp needs to be relatively small, no cabinets or stacks.

(7) Budget: I need to keep it at or under $400 if I can, give or take a few bucks.

Have been to GC a few times to look, but need to pull the trigger later today so I can get motivated to play my new (to me) SRV strat I just picked up. I prefer to stick with Fender or Marshall, but that might just be "brand recognition". I've heard (and spoken to the GC guys) about Line 6, Peavey, Vox and a few others but keep coming back to Fender or Marshall...

Anyone want to give me some pointed advice in the next couple hours?

Thanks very much in advance.
J.


Gear:
'00 Fender SRV Strat MIA
'95 Gibson Les Paul Standard
Ibanez Acoustic/Electric (Mod. AEG20E - VV)
Fender Super-Champ XD Amp
Boss Loop Station Pedal
Hope, fear, confusion, no natural talent.
#2
Blue junior or a Used Blues reissue(craiglist or ebay for this one)
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Last edited by O.O Meow O.O at Nov 29, 2009,
#3
Quote by O.O Meow O.O
Blue junior or a Used Blues reissue(craiglist or ebay for this one)

1+
#4
Bugera V5 or (if you want it at gigging volume) V22

I played them a few days ago at Guitar Center, awesome amps. Has a headphone jack, so no worries about the volume.
#5
you could get an orange crush or epi valve junior, maybe a good blackheart would work too. lot of options actually for home use
my gear//
GUITARS
ESP Horizon Custom
ESP M202BB
ESP HB300
Gibson LP Custom
Gibson V
AMPS
Orange Rockverb 50
Mesa Triple Recti
Marshall JCM800 2210
#6
and dont let the guitar center people talk you into buying a marshall mg, line 6 spyder, or really anything not tube. just ask them what they have in the way of low watt (15-20 ) tube amplifiers under 500 dollars. play what they have and get what sounds good to you.
#7
Super Champ XD. You can get Fender and Marshall tones and it sounds great at low volume levels.
#8
Thanks for the help all, please keep it coming. The Blues Jr. is a sweet looking Amp -- my guess is the tone would be great, too. The SuperChamp XD sounds like a good, more affordable option for me (is that "all tube" or hybrid?) Got the Bugera on my list to check out now, though mindful of potential quality issues...? (Saw this thread from today, too https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1237562).

Any more advice is appreciated.
Best,
J.


Gear:
'00 Fender SRV Strat MIA
'95 Gibson Les Paul Standard
Ibanez Acoustic/Electric (Mod. AEG20E - VV)
Fender Super-Champ XD Amp
Boss Loop Station Pedal
Hope, fear, confusion, no natural talent.
#9
Quote by JHS
Thanks for the help all, please keep it coming. The Blues Jr. is a sweet looking Amp -- my guess is the tone would be great, too. The SuperChamp XD sounds like a good, more affordable option for me (is that "all tube" or hybrid?) Got the Bugera on my list to check out now, though mindful of potential quality issues...? (Saw this thread from today, too https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1237562).

Any more advice is appreciated.
Best,
J.


Bugera's quality control has gotten MUCH better, much fewer breakdowns now. Most of them are the result of improper handling though, so be careful. And the Super Champ is a hybrid.
#11
The SCXD is a hybrid. The Blues Jr is a sweet amp, but if you don't already have pedals to go with you aren't going to cover much ground tone wise. The SCXD is perfect for an apt/town house. The built in voicing/fx will give you everything you need and it's a great sounding amp.
#12
Quote by fly135
The SCXD is a hybrid. The Blues Jr is a sweet amp, but if you don't already have pedals to go with you aren't going to cover much ground tone wise. The SCXD is perfect for an apt/town house. The built in voicing/fx will give you everything you need and it's a great sounding amp.


Thanks everyone. Just came back from GC with my new Fender Super-Champ XD for $270, which seems to be a fair price. I played the Blues Junior at the store (along with a few others), and even got one of the GC guys to play a good tune on one to see what it would sound like with someone who could actually play, and the above quote pretty much summarizes exactly where I came out on things. (Besides, the tubes on the XD actually sounded better than a couple of the "full-tube" amps I tried.)

One day, when I can actually play, I will be picking up a 100% tube Marshall stack, but not just yet.

Appreciate the advice.


Gear:
'00 Fender SRV Strat MIA
'95 Gibson Les Paul Standard
Ibanez Acoustic/Electric (Mod. AEG20E - VV)
Fender Super-Champ XD Amp
Boss Loop Station Pedal
Hope, fear, confusion, no natural talent.
#13
Congrats. Here's a hint... Try to keep gain knob turned down to prevent the tone from getting too compressed. Of the Brit voices (7,8, and 9) I like 9 the best because it's brighter and sounds more open with humbuckers. If you're using single coils then you might like 8 better. I find myself using my SG and #9 a lot with the gain knob generally between 1 & 2 1/4. You'll cover a lot of classic rock crunch in that territory.
#14
Quote by fly135
Congrats. Here's a hint... Try to keep gain knob turned down to prevent the tone from getting too compressed. Of the Brit voices (7,8, and 9) I like 9 the best because it's brighter and sounds more open with humbuckers. If you're using single coils then you might like 8 better. I find myself using my SG and #9 a lot with the gain knob generally between 1 & 2 1/4. You'll cover a lot of classic rock crunch in that territory.


Thanks! Very helpful to get specific advice like this.
Much appreciated.


Gear:
'00 Fender SRV Strat MIA
'95 Gibson Les Paul Standard
Ibanez Acoustic/Electric (Mod. AEG20E - VV)
Fender Super-Champ XD Amp
Boss Loop Station Pedal
Hope, fear, confusion, no natural talent.
#15
I liked using the 13th voicing and rolling the gain down to about 3 on my Super Champ. Sound really nice on a strat. Really big sounding considering it's such a small amp.
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