HT-5S Mini Stack review by Blackstar

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.5 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (18 votes)
Blackstar: HT-5S  Mini Stack

Price paid: £ 399

Purchased from: Rowlands music swansea

Sound — 9
I use it with an LTD EX-50 with ESP LH-300 pickups (upgrading guitar soon!). My style is Heavy Metal/Thrash Metal. I mainly play bands like Metallica, Iron Maiden, Slayer etc. It can do these styles very well. So far I have been able to get every sound I want! It's quite easy to get the sounds. For some reason, when I first got it it didn't sound that good but I think it was just my ears adjusting to it as I had been using a Line 6 spider III for 2 years! The ISF knob is pretty useless to me. I have only turned it to about 9 o'clock to get a good Iron maiden sound. It sounds best at 0. The clean channel breaks up after about 1 o'clock. Both channels sound good at quite low volumes. The Distortion channel gets quite noisy at high volumes when your not playing. There is lots of Gain on tap to use. I have not needed to turn the gain past 3 o'clock with any of the sounds I want. Overall, definitely a great amp that sounds very good. The clean is quite good but this amp is all about Distortion. Very great sounding amp and I am very happy with it even though I am using a cheap guitar with stock pickups.

Overall Impression — 8
I play metal and it suits it perfectly. I have been playing for about 4 years. I own a Zakk Wylde wah and it sounds good through the amp. If it was stolen I would call the police and then my insurance company and get a new one! Nah but if it were stolen I would probably save up some money and maybe buy it again. I love the Distortion channel because it is so easy to get sounds I want. I wish it had separate EQ's for the different channels because I sometimes don't like the sound of the clean channel but it is OK.

Reliability & Durability — 9
I have never gigged before because I am not in a band but I am sure I would trust it as it seems to be pretty well built. The knobs are all nice and tight and nothing has fallen off yet! I have only had it for a few weeks so I can't really give a big review of reliability. I would use it for a gig without a backup.

Features — 8
You can read above for this part as it's already been said quite alot! The only thing's I know are: - 2 footswitchable channels with shared EQ - 1 pre amp tube and 1 power tube - Blackstar 'ISF' knob I wish it had one EQ for the clean and 1 EQ for the overdrive channel.

6 comments sorted by best / new / date

    is this mini stack loud enough for bar gigs? cuz im goin between this 5w head and the 20w head
    I've got one of these and it's an awesome and powerful amp for the price. The ISF is a great feature and you can play any number of different genres on it.
    How could you get this amp to get a more modern metal tone? Would you need an overdrive pedal or a distortion pedal? I like what I see though.
    Just ordered this in the limited edition white finish. I sold my Bugera 333XL and Bugera 412 as I needed to downsize. I cant wait to get it