#1
Hi, i have recently purchased an American special telecaster, but I am currently running through a vox valvetronix vt40+ that i feel does not do the guitar justice. I'm looking for a nice versatile combo amp mainly for jamming at home and with a band every now and then, so not a huge amount of power needed. Any suggestions are welcomed as my knowledge of amps is very limited. Also, if i was to buy a tube amp, how often do the tubes generally need to be replaced?
#2
- Budget?
- Combo or head/cab?
- One or two channels?
- Effects loop or reverb built in?
- What sound are you after (what band)?
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#3
Sqwukester Answer the questions that 8Len8 listed and we can help you out more. The main two are your budget and the genres you play.

With new production tubes, I suggest that power tubes to be used about a year before needing to change them as preventative maintenance. Pre amp tubes, 3 years. But that is just a "to be safe" estimate. You could use the tubes for as long as they will operate and only change them when they stop working, which may be anywhere from a few moments (rare) to decades (rare for new production tubes). It is smart practice to always have spares on hand though- typically you will get a new tube set to replace the stock tubes and keep the stock tubes as backup.
#4
The Vox VT is a pretty legit practice amp, especially for vintage tones. It really depends greatly on the specific sound you are chasing (favorite guitar tracks), budget, and location. Since you are keeping this a secret we will be fairly useless.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
#5
Cajundaddy In terms of budget, I wouldn't want to spend over £500, and I'm currently based in the UK. In terms of sound, I do like a lot of alternative rock such as RHCP, spending most of the time on clean channels or with a little gain. I love the punchiness of the tele, so anything that would emphasise that would be ideal if that makes any sense...
I think I'm just excited about my tele being delivered, I suppose I should see how it sounds on the VT40 first when it arrives. Thanks for the reply anyway.
Also, i think I'd prefer a combo, effects are nice but not essential, and I'm not fussed about channels either.
Last edited by Sqwukester at Jan 2, 2017,
#6
I suggest Blackstar Artisan series or Series one 45 watt combo. I think these amps will give you what your looking for.
If your on more of a budget check out the Club 40.

Blackstar amps are incredibly versatile and can cover a wide range of playing styles. For the money they probably are the best on the market.
The Quest for Tone.
#7
Quote by Sqwukester
Cajundaddy In terms of budget, I wouldn't want to spend over £500, and I'm currently based in the UK. In terms of sound, I do like a lot of alternative rock such as RHCP, spending most of the time on clean channels or with a little gain. I love the punchiness of the tele, so anything that would emphasise that would be ideal if that makes any sense...
I think I'm just excited about my tele being delivered, I suppose I should see how it sounds on the VT40 first when it arrives. Thanks for the reply anyway.
Also, i think I'd prefer a combo, effects are nice but not essential, and I'm not fussed about channels either.
Maybe you would like to graduate to a real VOX AC? AC15's can be found used for good prices. Blackstar is also a fairly solid option, their tube models are "versatile" due to their ISF feature. I see Josh Klinghoffer uses a Marshall, Silvertone, and Fender all at the same time.
#8
Maybe check out the new Boss Katana, seem to be getting a lot of good reviews lately
#9
RHCP use Fender, Vox, Supro, and Marshall amps with modest gain. The Vox VT actually cover those tones pretty well. Also consider Blues Jr, AC15, SuperChamp X2 which give you more organic tube tone and have just enough juice to run with a drummer or do small gigs. Enjoy, Teles rule!
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
Last edited by Cajundaddy at Jan 2, 2017,
#10
how quietly do you have to play at home?

it really depends with tubes- if you only play at home you can get years out of tubes (if you're lucky).

also cathode-biased amps don't need to be biased when changing tubes, which means you can change them yourself (in most instances, anyway, a very few models might have awkward-to-get-to tubes or something like that, but that's the exception rather than the rule usually). that often goes hand-in-hand with different circuits and different tones (probably not that useful for e.g. metal tones) but for the tones you want I imagine cathode-biased would be fine. vox ac15 and ac30 should be cathode-biased, for example.
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#11
Thanks everyone for the suggestions, that's helped a lot. I guess I'll weigh up my options now, counting down the days till my tele arrives!