HT 60 Stage review by Blackstar

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.4 (46 votes)
Blackstar: HT 60 Stage
6

Price paid: $ 829

Purchased from: FSV

Sound — 10
I use an Epiphone Les Paul with an alder body. I have tried a range of other guitars through it in the shop and to be honest whatever guitar you plug in it will shine! I play blues rock ranging from Hendrix to Zep mostly but I also mess around with Jazz and Metal from time to time. This amp does it all the clean channel doesn't Drive until 6 o'clock but if you want a clean sound at high volume the master can carry you all the way and vice versa. I stick my volume up to ten generally on the Drive channels and use the gain as my volume, it really gives a punchy tone like that ideal for blues! The distortion can be anything from an axe wielding murderer to a soft purr! This amp is suited to all genres of playing!

Overall Impression — 10
It matches my style perfectly. I love some crunchy blues and heavy rock so this beast is amazing, but I also bought it for its singing clean channel. If it were lost or stolen I would look for it in a weight lifting club because its a very heavy amp! Love the amp and if I had more money I still would have bought this one. My favourite feature is its crunchy OD-1 which rocks! I love this amp!

Reliability & Durability — 9
This amp is a good sturdy box of an amp but it is a tube amp so TLC is required. I wouldn't go banging my own round anytime soon! I haven't gigged it yet but I've been up at that volume in the store and it handles it well. Have had no problems with it so far and if I was to gig it I always have a backup because the ME-70 I plug into it can go through a PA and has amp modelling. Overall I would trust this amp but its tube nature loses it a mark.

Features — 10
This amp is fairly new. It is a tube amp with 2xECC83, 1xECC82, 2xEL34. After the success HT-5 came Blackstars bigger brothers of the HT-5 the Venue Series. The biggest combo in this series is the HT-60 Stage. This beast can do anything and everything. The overdrive channels seemed strong at first but with controlled use of the volume and gain you can balance out the channels to any level of distortion. This amp has 3 channels each with its own second voicing, it also packs a very useful ISF which allows you to alter the signal to range from a more british style Drive to a more american style drive. The reverb is digital but with 2 voicings also and although I was wary at first the lads at Blackstar did a great job voicing it. It also has presence and resonance controls. On the back theres an FX loop, external speaker outputs the usual... This amp is has more than enough in the power department for any musician and more. I never put it past 1 or 2 on the master. It has everything a guy can need in one amp but its only downfall is it weigh a ton (30kg). I'm still giving it a ten because amps should be rated on sound not weight!

20 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ghast
    Works fine for metal, especially once you bring up the channel volume getting all the driven tube distortion too. If you're looking for a mesa-boogie really slick hiissss kinda distortion you're not going to get that though. It's more of a darker rounded sound. If you're an extreme gain junky you might need to add maybe a tube screamer or something, but really if you need more gain than on tap you need to learn to play better.
    bastardsodecent
    Good review, but however...on features, you gave it a 10 because of sound, despite sound being a totally different section.
    Irishman94
    Touche, sorry, my internet acted up and had to type it out again... But for features a lot... No cd ins or headphones out but has everything else and to be honest they are hard to find on tube amps from what i've seen anyway. That ISF thing is really useful!
    Ghast
    You'll get a great Opeth tone out of it, think deliverance or bleak. Thats the kinda tone youll get of it for metal. One of them uses the blackstar amps now
    ^Thats the kind of metal tone you can expect to get absolutely stunningly.
    richardlpalmer
    Sorry if this is a redundant question, but I currently have an HT-5 (which I LOVE) but need a bit more volume, some more headroom on the cleans & having a 3rd channel could be huge. This amp seems to have it all, but at 60W I'm concerned it's just going to be more demanding than I can give it most of the time. I play my HT-5 pretty loud (compared to itself) and sometimes use a boost. With that in mind, if I used the HT-60 but turned the Master Volume down to a comparable volume of the HT-5 fairly cranked, do you think I would still be able to get adequate tones? I play mostly in my home as a bedroom player, but could play with others either in my home or elsewhere. But mainly I'm going to be jamming in the home. What do you think?
    Irishman94
    Good OD like metalxsymphony said when cranked but at low volumes you clean is grand. Like all tube amps, the louder the better If uyour looking for a low level amp a 60watt 2x12 tube amp is a bad choice, not`hing is suttle about them, theyre big, hefty and loud
    metalxsymphony
    KKND wrote: how is this at bedroom levels, very very low volume?
    It does not sound good at low levels. Clean channel is great at any volume. However, I tried cranking the volume on the OD channels and lowering the master volume. No go. When I started to crank it, I started getting good tones. But since I'm in adorm, I couldn't crank it. Going to try it out with the band this weekend, but I'm guessing it sounds much better cranked. That said, I usually like the tone of amps that have been cranked.
    rory5693
    Has anyone found a latency problem when changing sounds , i have this combo it does everything soundwise but the footswitch leaves a gap in sound when changing
    Irishman94
    Metal works grand with the mids up + channel 2 voice 2 with volume up all the way
    Irishman94
    If your gonna get one get one wuick, with currency changes happening dude the price will onl go up and up got mine for 829
    Its So Easy
    Sounds great Ghost. As of now this is my top choice for a new amp. Just need some serious time to try it out, sadly only GC has one around me...
    Ghast
    Not to double comment.... It records beautifully too. Sounds great mic'd up on any of the channels with my audix i5. The emulated output isn't great, but it sounds decent. Would work great if you didn't have the experience or money to mic it up.
    Ghast
    Love. This. Amp. So good, got mine 2 days before your review. I can't get over it. I can get any sound I want over it, the overdrive and distortion is BEAUTIFUL. I play can metal on the high gain channel, any kind of classic rock on the overdrive 1, and I love the boutique clean setting. It took me a bit to find it's sweet spot but once I figured out all of the amps features It's one of the best I've ever heard. Kicked the crap out of all the others amps in its price range by FAR.
    Irishman94
    Can you??? Thanks, thats pretty handy! Also Hawg427, if you put the OD-1 volume up to ten then use the gain control as a volume you can get an SRV style tone. Put the volume on ten, gain on one and use the master to adjust the volume. Sounds pretty epic!
    hawg427
    I just bought the Stage 100 Head and am running it thru a Egnater Tourmaster 2X12 Cab. Heck, the cab weighs over 55lbs. I love this head. Still trying to get that SRV tone out of the Clean channel. So many different combinations. I ordered a Weber Attenuator so I can play it at the amps sweet spot w/o rattling the windows. I had the clean channel on 10 and the Master on 6 and the windows were makin noise. LOL So far it seems to be a great product. Now for the BAD news. Don't try to get up with Blackstar through their website. I had a few questions and sent a total of 6 emails and received NO replies.
    Irishman94
    No question is redundant HT 60 stage is huge dude, tone at low volumes is pretty decent on clean but you need a tiny bit of volume on the ods to get them singing. However ive never played a HT5 myself. There is a 20 watt a 40watt and a 60watt soloist also available in this range. For jamming at home i dont see the point in a 60 watt tube amp but hey the choice is yours. But if you are planning on gigging in the future and are willing to carry around a 30kg beast then by all means this is perfect. My main reason for buying an amp of this size was so that i wouldnt need to buy another (ITS A KEEPER) If you are looking at the smaller models of this amp then keep it in mind that they do not have as many functions as the stage. Keep in mind that if you like your ht5 and just need more volume you can always mic the amp. That way you can crank it without extreme volume and still be heard. If you only play in your bedroom what is the estra volume for???