Blues Junior Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 12/18/2013 category: Guitar Amplifiers

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Fender: Blues Junior
This warm-toned favorite takes our 15-watt, tube preamp and power amp platform and pushes it through a 12" Fender Special Design speaker. Add our renowned Fender Reverb, flexible controls, and footswitchable fat circuit for golden tones.
 Sound: 8.7
 Overall Impression: 8.6
 Reliability & Durability: 8.4
 Features: 8.1
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (14) pictures (2) 48 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 7.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: BadGonzo, on september 13, 2005
14 of 16 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 280

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: This little amp isn't exactly heavy on features. It's a very meat and potatoes amp. It is a 20 watt, all tube single channel with your basic 3 band EQ, master volume, preamp overdrive and reverb. That's it. Not even a standby switch. Once it's on - it's on. Oh it also has a "fat" switch with boosts the mids a bit. About 6 dbs or so I think. Not alot to navigate but it gets the job done. // 6

Sound: I run mine with a Fender Lite Ash Strat loaded with Texas Specials. The clean is sweet as expected. Has Fender ever not done a good clean with tubes? I tend to play blues/rock/country and every once in a blue moon mess around with harder stuff. For the blues and stuff this thing can do it on its own no prob. The overdrive is mild, just starting to clip. You can get more but it gets a bit noisy. If you need more, add a good overdrive on top of it and it breaks up really nice (I like a Boss Blues Driver set just enough to add some crunch). You really need to open the volume up to get a sweet sound out of it, but its tube, so that kind of goes with out saying. Since its single channel getting overdrive and clean is a bit trickier than it would be with a channel switch, but its no rubicks cube. Just set your overdrive sound where you want and to clean it up dial your axes volume back a tad. I also have an Epi Les Paul and the volume pots on that are very touchy and the volume doesn't do much until they get to about 2 and then they want to drop off completely. So in that case I run a pedal for overdrive/distortion. If your guitar is like that I recommend the same idea. I said I mess with some heavier stuff too, but I wouldnt use this amp for it if I was very serious about those styles. The low end is lacking (it's a single 12, 20 watt I think its understandable) and the amps distortion on its own is not nearly enough. For all this I'm giving it a 4. I stated it wasnt suited for metal and such but for clean/overdrive stuff it sounds good so thats why so high. I got all the way to overall impression and remembered the reverb. It can get quite thick but sounds best to me around 2-3. Depends on the space and volume your playing. I crank it to 12 for funzies (seriously it goes to 12) but its best down low. I've heard others say the same. It sounds damn fine dry too. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I've never gigged with it, but I would. Its small enough to crank it up and get tone without killing peoples heads. If you need more volume, mic it. I bet you could pull off small bars with this thing. Plus its small and portable. This controls are on a recessed panel on top but are kind of left exposed a little on the back side, but I dont think they would get beat. If you were careless yeah they would. I try not to move it much unless I have to and when I do I make sure it has cooled for around 10 minutes before I do, and it hasnt given me any troubles yet so that seems to be paying off. 2 years and not even a tube replacment, so its durable. Like I said earlier I run this thing pretty hard and I've left it on for hours at a time on accident a few times too. Tuff enuff for me. I cant imagine its Mesa or Soldano tough though. I give this a 4 taking that in to concideration. // 8

Overall Impression: I like it. It suites what I do and where I do it. I would still like another amp though. A larger one and a different sound. If it was broken or stolen, Id get another. Used probably, the new price on it is a bit much for my tastes. I think new was $379. Mine was new but I had an employee discount so it was around 280 or something. Anyway, overall its a nice lil amp. If you need variety in one package look else where. If you need a good clean/overdive sound at low volume with a touch of muscle, this might be what you need. I hope this helps if you were wondering about it. // 8

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overall: 9.8
Blues Junior Reviewed by: Tele Echoes, on october 22, 2007
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 440.046

Purchased from: Belle Air Music

Features: I'm not exactly sure what year my actual product was made, although on the warranty info that was tied around one of the control knobs it claims that the 5 year limited warranty was made effective in 2001. I believe it was made afterwards though, since the amp is Brand New and probably wouldn't be up for sale if it were made back then. I'm guessing it's about a year old, two tops. First of all, the model is called "Blues Jr.", meaning that it is primarily meant for blues. The name is quite deceiving though, with the "Blues" label being about as misleading as the "Jr" would lead you to believe this amp is quiet. It is neither. So far I've been able to get a good clean sound of it, to a silky overdriven blues tone, to a throaty blues rock overdrive, as well as classic and hard rock, simply through adjusting the various knobs. The gain on this amp is so natural and kind on your ears, you'll probably feel guilty for getting the amp at the price you did. Also, the reverb is really good, unlike the solid state version Fender puts into their FM series. There's 2 channels to work with, and those are the normal channel and the "fat channel". The fat channel supplies the bigger sound and seems to be satisfactory for the harder driven rock & roll style you youngsters think is all the rage. Seriously though, this amp offers you a really good overdrive/distortion and if you are a minimalist you can sleep tight, seeing as all you need is your guitar, a cable, and the amp to achieve a marvelous sound. As for myself, I use a Crybaby and a Double Muff pedal because I like using my feet. The reverb actually sounds like you'd expect the effect to sound; it gives off a sound that reminds you of playing in a performance hall of sorts, and the different amounts of which you choose to provide your sound with doesn't really matter, since it will sound great no matter what. One thing I noticed that the amp lacks is a drive/gain knob. However, seeing as this is my first tube amp, and that the Drive is not a simulated sound like that of a solid state, I figure that it's absence in reasonable. The Blues Jr. does not have a headphone jack, although I can't really understand why you'd pay more money for a tube amp to use headphones. That's the only thing that I can think of that could be considered missing, and it's not something I actually miss, so other than that there is nothing I wish the amp had more of. I use all the features that this amp offers. Lastly (looking back I should have noted this at the beginning). The Fender Blues Jr. is a 15 watt class A tube amp. I use it at my house and plan on using it to jam and gig, however I've only owned it 3 days and have been busy with work (a unusual occurence), so no jamming with people on it as of yet. Most of you may know this, but to those looking at this review because they want to know how much power a tube amp delivers, don't be fooled. While 15 watts may seem low, it suonds louder than a 50 watt solid state at least (I don't know the exact mathematics of it). I'm completely satisfied with the amplifier. Fender has once again come through for me. // 10

Sound: I play a broad range of music on this puppy (classical, folk, blues, blues rock, classic rock, and all that space rock and stuff). I use a left hand Fender MIM Telecaster standard through the amp and feel that the Fender on Fender combo is ideal for this amp. My friend played his Epi Les Paul Standard on it and it sounded great as well. If by noisy, you mean loud then yes, this amp can be very noisy. However, there are no negative sounds unrelated to my guitar playing that can be heard on the amp. When I put my Double Muff into it's max Drive 2 option, the amp sends out a buzzing sound. This sound is only because of how overdriven the signal is and is really what you want to be happening. The variety is wide for the sound you can achieve, and my review of the features more than explains my beliefs. The believe the clean level can sound a little distorted at high levels, however I'm unsure and not willing to wake my street up to find out. Sorry. The distortion is not "brutal", it's perfect. However, if you are a hardcore metal head, you may want to invest in one of those metal distortion pedals. If not, this amp isn't for you. // 10

Reliability & Durability: The amp is Brand New and has never broken down. If it had, this thing would be getting zeros across the board heheh. I would feel comfortable gigging this amp without a back up, seeing as it's the best amp I've ever owned to date. I imagine I'll have to replace a tube or two in the future, but that is just part of the tube amp lifestyle. I'd imagine this amp is delicate though, being a tube amp and all, so don't be rough with it. // 9

Overall Impression: I play classical, rock, and of couse "the blues", and play a Fender guitar, so this is a match made in heaven. I've been playing over 4 years now and if it were stolen I would definately get it again, unless of course I had 2 grand, then I'd probably get a Twin Reverb or a Hiwatt or Vox combo. My favorite feature would have to be it's wonderful sound, followed closely by its modest yet fashionable design and convenient wieght. I compared this amp to a 40 watt Peavey and some other tube amps. I felt that this was the best deal for a versatile tube amp both capable of playing at home and with a band and at gigs. I also own a Pacifica, although I don't use her that much anymore, and I always use my EH Double Muff overdrive/fuzz, and when I remember to bring it home, my Crybaby Wah. The only thing I wish this amp had was the tweed design I originally planned on getting. Since this version was in stock though, I have nobody to blame for that but myself. I know my other review didn't contain much negative comments and neither does this one, but this is my most honest and humble opinion on the deserved rating of this product. I love the Fender Blues Jr. because it contributed to me playing the blues, and not having them. I would highly recommend this to anybody looking for a good tube amp at a fair price. The Fender Blues Jr. gets a 10 from me. Thank you for your time and energy in reading my review. // 10

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overall: 9
Blues Junior Reviewed by: ECistheBest, on july 30, 2007
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: Amp was made in early '07, bought in april. I play Blues~Classic Rock type of genre. I dig the sound of this amp, kind of voiced like a Fender Bassman in a way. Single Channel, very nice for me and my 70's mentality. The "Turn down the volume to decrease distortion" thing. I use every knob. I mean every knob. The Volume is cranked, TMB are all at 12, and the splash of reverb at 3. Master Volume is most of the time at 12, with my Weber Attenuator, and it delivers some creamy saturation. I play this amp everywhere. Home, Jam Sessions, Practices, and Gigs. It's enough for all. It has 3 - 12AX7 preamp tubes, and 2 EL84 (6BQ5) poweramp tubes. // 9

Sound: Fender Standard Stratocaster Made in Mexico with Fender Hot Noiseless Pickups. These are great combos. Strat through a Blues Jr, you can't have enough. Creamy saturation, with enough sustain, but the volume rolled off gives me such a clean sound with the preamp volume at 12. Breaks up ver ynicely. It really suits my Mid-Gain Blues addiction, and I have a Marshall DSL401 to do higher gain. This amp is dead quiet when I have the Volume off on my guitar. I have every setting on 12 except reverb at 3. Makes awesome sound for my genre, but not so much more. And to answer the last question, no, the distortion isn't brutal at all. And to add, this little beat is loud. You can't figure it's only rated 15watts. It has to be a 30watt or more for this loudness. // 9

Reliability & Durability: It's a very nice amp. I would definitely use it without a backup. It never broke down, but I went through some bad ones before I got this one. I bought a new speaker for this baby, a Weber 12F150, and it's nice. it gives really nice agressive mids, with the pick attack slightly accentuated, warm treble, and tight bass. I haven't replaced tubes yet, but I don't think I would for another year or so. // 8

Overall Impression: I play Mid Gain blues, and it's a perfect match. I've been playing for 2~3 years, and I have a Marshall DSL401 Combo for higher gain classic rock stuff. People want the footswitch for the fat Switch, but there's no need. You wouldn't turn off the fat Switch. If it was stolen, first I would get another one, then order the Speakers I have right now. I love the fact that it has such sweet tone out of a little 15watt $400 amp. and the 15watt is LOUD. It owns my 40watt Marshall. // 10

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overall: 9
Blues Junior Reviewed by: Irocknroll1990, on december 09, 2008
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: A Fender Blues Junior, very simple ALL TUBE amp, 4 EQ knobs, 2 volume knobs, a reverb knob, and a fat Switch button. That's all you honestly need. It is a single channel amp so an overdrive pedal would be huge help. When used with an OD pedal, it's best for blues, 60s and 70s rock, but can handle harder rock, not heavy metal though. It is LOUD. I played this at full volume and it was louder than my 50 watt Vox Valvetronix. However, I'm not sure how loud the clean can get before it gets distorted. Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Aerosmith are some sounds that this amp can produce wonderfully. // 9

Sound: I use this amp with a Gibson Les Paul Studio. My music style would hard rock, classic rock, and blues. Guns N' Roses, AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, and Jimi Hendrix are some of what I frequently play. This amp is wonderful for my taste (altho GnR sound would really be perfected with a Marshall since it is more bottom end). The amp's distortion is NOT brutal... even with an OD pedal, you can't play Slipknot or heavy stuff like that. The amp is very sensitive to how hard you hit the strings. It can produce wonderfully resonant clean tones. I never tried the amp's full distortion, I use an Ibanez TS9DX pedal. The best example of what this amp sounds like with an Ibanez TS9DX turned up, listen to the guitar riff YOU SHOOK ME ALL NIGHT LONG by AC/DC. It pretty much nails it. It sounds warm and creamy, and if dpending on the settings... it can sound ORGASMIC // 9

Reliability & Durability: I can definitely depend on it, I only had it for 2 months. I don't gig, I play at home... or else I would've gotten the Hot Rod Deluxe. Has not broken down and no tube problems... it's fresh. I can't really comment on this because the amp is new and I don't gig. // 9

Overall Impression: This amp is a GREAT choice for blues players. If you like Stevie Ray Vaughan... get this. An OD pedal will be almost mandatory so keep that in mind. With OD pedal... you can play Led Zeppelin and AC/DC crunch. I love how the amp sounds natural. It sounds like it is it's own instrument. I sounds warm and creamy. The OD pedal makes it sound like AC/DCish... big bright crunch. I also love how this amp can produce that tube tone of far more expensive amps. I chose this because I love Fender's warm sounding tube amps. They just sound gorgeous. This is perfect for bedroom playing. // 9

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overall: 9
Blues Junior Reviewed by: jjack, on december 18, 2013
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: This is a one-channel tube amp with not a lot of bells and whistles. It really doesn't have many features. That said, it's not supposed to. It's supposed to be a one-channel tube amp. It has exactly what it needs and not much more, and I think that's by design. It simply works. The master volume and reverb are great. I'd say maybe a more accessible speaker jack would be nice. Also, you get an amp, and nothing else. No accessories. Dust cover and footswitch for "fat" setting sold separately. So I give it an 8 instead of a 10. // 8

Sound: 10, hands down. I am mostly writing this review to respond to an earlier review that railed on this amp for not having a sound that is rockin' or punk enough. I play in a touring punk rock band and this is exactly the sound I wanted. Granted, if you want a no-tone ultra-crunch distortion of doom that you get out of a solid state amp or crappy stomp box, you won't get it here. That said, you could just plug in your crappy stomp box if that's what you want. If you want real tube distortion, crank the front-end "volume" up to 12 and roll back the "master" to whatever decibel level suits you (I go with 3-7 depending). Remember, this is a one-channel tube amp. The "fat" switch does NOT switch between clean and gain channels. The front-end volume determines the amount of overdrive you are getting and the master volume is meant to adjust the volume to a reasonable level after you've sculpted the sound. If you dial in a crunchy overdriven sound you have to roll the volume switch on your guitar back to clean it up. Sorry if I'm putting too fine a point on this but a little understanding of how a classic-style tube amp works will go a long way, and the previous reviewer I have in mind obviously lacked that knowledge. One final thing, the volume on this is BIG for such a small package. Jamming in the living room, "3" on the master is big enough to rattle the windows. We frequently mic the amps and run through the PA but I've had to fill a medium sized venue at stage volume and this thing can handle it. I couldn't get enough monitor to get over the thing. Don't let 15 watts fool you. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Everything is pretty solid. It's compact, seems well built. It's a tube amp so I'm a little bit careful with it. But I've hauled it around back and forth from home, rehearsals, gigs on the road in the trailer of a freezing semi. The only problem is that one day the master volume knob mysteriously broke completely in half. No big deal; I super-glued it back together and put it back on (it was under warranty and I'm sure you can get a replacement part for like $5 but I don't mind fixing minor easy things). That's the only reason I give it a 9 instead of a 10. // 9

Overall Impression: This was my first and, so far, last tube amp. As soon as I brought it home and plugged it in I immediately thought, "this is what a guitar amp is supposed to sound like." Like I said, I am now in a touring punk rock band and this is my gig, rehearsal, recording and songwriting amp. I think it's funny to see it on the backline, so tiny and cute, next to all the big amps. Then I fire it up and it sounds so fat and raunchy compared to the other bands that schlepp around their ultra mega half-stacks. I have a 120 watt half stack that now sits in a storage unit collecting dust. Most importantly it has an awesome tube sound with enough overdrive suitable for a punk rock band. It's light enough to haul around, loud enough to gig with, looks cool; all my complaints are very minor. I have no regrets about this purchase and if I lost it I would buy another one (or a similar Fender tube amp). // 9

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overall: 9.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: unregistered, on october 24, 2005
0 of 5 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 399.99

Purchased from: Crossroads Music

Features: Has enough knobs to get the job done, treble, bass, master, reverb, middle. It also has a "fat switch" that gives it an extra boost of sound. I bought a Boss DS-1 because this thing has almost no distortion. I use every feature on this amp, just to fool around with everything. It is 15 watts, but sounds way louder than that, and it has tubes. // 9

Sound: I use my Fender Mustang through this, which has two single coil pickups. With the Boss DS-1 I have hooked up, it's awesome. The distortion straight from the amp isnt enough for me, my style is grungy loud music. The clean channel is crisp and clear. The only time it's noisy is with the Boss hooked up, otherwise, it's only a little noisy. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I could definitly depend on this thing. I haven't gigged with it, but I'm sure that it would be ok during a gig. The amp has never had any problems. // 10

Overall Impression: My style is grungy, loud music. The Boss DS-1 makes this happen, so its a good match. I've been playing for 2 years. I have a Fender Mustang, Washburn House Of Blues electric, this amp, a little 8 watt amp the Washburn came with, and the Boss DS-1 Distortion pedal. I probably would buy another if it was stolen, unless I tracked down the moron who took it. I like everything about it except the distortion, but it's a tube amp so I couldn't expect much. // 9

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overall: 7.3
Blues Junior Reviewed by: L_Z_Nut, on may 19, 2006
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 387.1

Purchased from: eBay

Features: '05 model made in mexico, all tube, 2 EL-84's, and 3 12AX7's. This amp is pretty versatile (except if you play metal), but it really shines when playing blues/rock, and classic rock. It's called Blues Junior for a reason. 3 band EQ, Volume, and master to control overdrive. Fat switch for boost. Could have really used a stand-by Switch though. I'm using it for a bedroom/practice amp, it has more then enough power for my situation, way more then expected. 7 for lack of features and stand-by switch. // 7

Sound: I'm using an Agile ST-802 with Tex-Mex pickups, and an Epiphone Vintage G-400, my pedals are an Electro-Harmonix The Wiggler, Electro-Harmonix Big Muff, and I just recently purchased an Electro-Harmonix Graphic Fuzz (if you can't tell I'm an Electro-Harmonix fanatic). Sounds great with both guitars and with my pedals, and is a perfect combo for blues and classic rock. The clean is unbelievable sounding, crystal clear, and bright, and sounds amazing when the volume is turned up (great tube break-up sound). It has a little bit of hum, but I'm sending it in to Bill Machrone to get his hum cancelling mods and various other mods I want, I should be sending it in before the end of this year. I just can't let this thing go right now, I love it too much. Giving it an 9 because of the hum, but it's not that bad, just a slight hum. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I've had it for about a month now, and put a lot of hours in it already. Seems like it's built like a tank, very sturdy. Haven't had any problems with it whatsoever, hopefully I won't ever have a problem (knock on wood). I would definately gig with it(if I ever get a gig) without a backup, but only if it's a small venue, if I ever do a big one I would use my Traynor YCV40T. Giving it a 5 because it's too early to tell if I'll have any problems with it further on down the road. But I'm very confident it will last a very very long time. // 5

Overall Impression: Great for blues, and classic rock, and versatile enough for other styles of music, but this is what I mainly play so. Been playing about 7-8yrs now, I own a Traynor YCV40T 2x10 and I'll tell ya' if this little monster was 25 watts more powerful, it would blow my Traynor out of the water. I love it that much. If it were stolen I'd buy a new one in tweed then I'd hunt down the scum sucking ass-monkey that stole it so I can have 2 of them. I love how loud this little thing is for 15 watts, I was very surprised about that. My favorite thing about this amp though is the natural tube break-up, it's so sweet. The only thing I don't like, or wished it had was a standby Switch, and perhaps a tremolo effect, but that's why I bought the wiggler. 8 because of the lack of features, and standby switch. Try this amp, you won't be disapointed. // 8

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overall: 5.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: Rock Boy, on november 06, 2006
0 of 37 people found this review helpful

Features: I don't actualy own this amp, but I have used it on a local club where I am practising with my band. The Blues Jr features two channels, clean & fat. In the name, it says Blues Junior, and that's what it's blues it is made for. Since I play mostly hard rock and punk, this amp doesn't fit my style of music. When I play Jimi Hendrix, the amp is nice if I turn the gain to 12. There isn't too much difference between the clean and fat channels, so fat just give a little more boost. This amp is 15-watts, but it sounds like a 50-watt amp. There is almost weird that this little bastard can produce so much sound. I wish there was more Marshall tube feeling in the overdrive sound. // 6

Sound: For blues or pop rock, this amp is great. For punk, hard rock & metal, forget it! There is not much noise though, but the clean channel gets a little distorted if the volume is too high. The sound isn't very vaiable, because the equalizers don't affect the sound much enough. The sound may be great for other guitarists, but I give it a 4 because it doesn't fit my style. // 4

Reliability & Durability: I won't use it in a gig because of the sound, but it has never broken down when I practice. The wires are well wired and ther is no squeeking when carrying the amp around. The knobs is solid placed on the amp. The tubes seems to be solid, so it's dureable after all. // 8

Overall Impression: I didn't like this amp at all. The sound is not my style, the clean channel isn't clean. I am glad I don't own this amplifter at all. I do not reccomend it to any hard rockers at all. The Laney HCM15R or the Marshall MG15CDR is a much better choise and is both more cheaper and have better distortion. The Marshall does even have digital effects, so skip this amplifter! // 4

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overall: 9.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: andybene, on june 11, 2007
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: This is an all tube amplifier. It's totally modern and fit for today, but breathes Vintage tone. This amp I'd say can handle up to a Hard Rock Classic tone, any higher and the amp would distort. This amp works exceptionally well with blues, rock, and jazz, almost perfect tube tone. Which really fits my playing style. I play blues, rock, jazz, and hard rock. So if your into modern rock or metal do not buy this. Totally Vintage authentic amp. This amp has two channels One being clean, but with the volume knob you can increase the drive or roughness of the tone. The 2nd channel is the fat button. It basically increases drive and db+. The only the only things I wish it had would be a vibrato, tremolo, or a rotary simulator. Hey it's only 400 bucks. I don't believe in headphone jacks anyways you get an amp for the amp tone!. I use this amp as my main amp. it's perfect! loud in my room on 3/12. It goes to 12. I've gone in my friends garage and he has a Modern rock amp the Line 6 Spider w/ 150watts and mine could still be heard w/ volume and master @ 6! I wouldn't say blast it to 12 cause the tubes probably would burn. hahaha way better than any solid state nothin beats tube, unless you don't like them. // 8

Sound: I use a Fender Strat with my amp. HA the only thing else I need is an upgrade of a guitar cause this amp has set me for life it's awesome! I use all pickup styles and sounds great. Suits all of my styles too good. Not a noisy amp at all. Hey just slap in a trio of Noiseless Strat pickups and you'll be noise free. It can put out a pretty beefy FAT tone like SRV when de-tune. The Dirty channel sounds great if you know how to tweak. The clean channel always sounds perfect no matter what. And this is not a distortion solid-state amp. It's tube driven overdrive. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Now it is a tube amp so tubes will eventually burn out. But for now I've owned it for about 6 months and nothing has gone wrong. I can depend on it Fender has been making tube amps for so many years and they're one of the best makers in guitars and amps if not the best. I would use this amp everywhere I can rely on it. The speaker is Made in USA by Eminesence Gold label, and these tubes are Fender logo Russian made, and the Spring Reverb is USA made by Accutronics. The amp overall is all made in Mexico. They use to be made in US but it dosn't matter still a well made amp. Just keep this amp nice and treat it well and it will last you till you die. // 10

Overall Impression: In all this amp fits me perfect. I've been playing guitar for six years and I just turned 20 so I'm still a young player, but I've grown so use to playing bluesy music that this amp I knew would fit me nice. I only own Fender gear so I can't beat one up over the other. I use to own a Gibson LP Special, but I hated the tone, so I switched to a Strat and I love it. The reason I bought this amp was affordable, all tube, Fender, and vintage look. I am finally set on amps. Love this little amp. // 10

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overall: 8
Blues Junior Reviewed by: E V H 5150, on january 18, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: When it comes to features, this amp has the full package. It has a master volume knob; bass, mid and treble knobs; master volume knob; reverb level; a FAT Switch; and a volume knob that adjusts the gain. To me, that's all a good amp needs. It doesn't need cheap little effects, or amp models or even it's own heavy distortion. It has tubes, and all the "basic" controls one would ever need. That's not to say that I have no need for my ME-50, but with that, do I really need all these extras in an amp? I do play straight through sometimes with the amp. I can get this really nice blues tones, and some good cleans. It will not do metal on its own. It will not give you death-metal gain, it will not give out distortion. It will give you some killer blues tones, whether you want those dirty, dirty blues, the kind that you just need to play slow with the slow bends. And it can give you a more rock-blues type sound. If you want blues and cleans, it is fine. It does a nice job of handling my ME-50's distortion. With that, I can get a death metal tone. Not that I ever use it. It's not the most versatile. No effects, nothing. But it is loud. I've played it with my band a few times, and it worked perfectly. It is a bit loud for a bedroom amp. It's not like my old MG15DFX, which was good for bedroom, and pretty much nothing else. I use it in my bedroom and with my band. I have not used it in a gig situation, but I'm sure that I could just mic it up if I really had to. I bought this amp used, and I think it's made a while ago. I read the specs on the modern one, and it seems like they've added a footswitch jack for the Fat. // 8

Sound: I use this amp with my Peavey HP Signature EXP and Boss ME-50. I play mostly classic rock and bluesy stuff, and I also need a good clean channel. Like I said before, if you're looking for a death-metal amp, you better have a pedal or something, because this is a BLUES Jr., not a metal Jr. But Fender does have the MetalHead amps, if you really like Fender. The amp doesn't do much. It amplifies the sound. It is basic, and suits me perfectly. The tone, however, is great for blues. I cannot say enough how this amp has great blues tones, and I just love to play dirty, dirty blues. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Unfortunately, the reverb on mine does not work. I checked that the thing is plugged into the reverb box, and I don't know how to repair amps, so I'd rather not go investigating, because I can just use the ME-50 for that. It would just be nice to have the reverb, really. I am not the first owner, so I do not know if it has broken down, or when the last tube change was. I also do not know how to tell if it needs new tubes. It seems to be working just fine, however. I would depend on it, but if worst comes to worst, I could always plug my ME-50 direct to the PA, which is what I found this. It's used, but the last owner took care of it, I can tell. It seems to have been alive for quite a while, and I think if I take care of it, it will last at least long enough to when I can afford a bigger and better amp. // 8

Overall Impression: It does do blues, but not metal. That's why I have the ME-50. I love to play blues, and that's pretty much how I play most of the time. I've been a guitarist for 4 years, and I also own: Marshall MG15DFX, a broken Squier Strat, a Peavey HP Signature EXP, a random Squier acoustic guitar, a Boss ME-50, and a Bad Dog distortion pedal. I only ever use the Peavey and the ME-50, with this amp, however. I compared it too, nothing really. I was at my local music store, and I had a bit of money from Christmas, and I asked my friend giving me a ride home to stop there so I could look around, and then I saw this, and a Fender 65 reverb amp. I don't know what it's called, it was also used, and it said reverb on it. I also considered the FM210, and the ValveKing 112. They were all out of my price range, and I was much more impressed with this than the other Fender. It was more of an impulse buy, and it had a real nice clean channel, which was pretty much the only thing I wanted. I bought it for what I needed: an upgrade from the MG. It's loud enough for at least a band practice, and the tone, if you have a distortion or something, is very versatile. // 8

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overall: 8.8
Blues Junior Reviewed by: unregistered, on september 01, 2008
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Features: The 2008 All-Valve Fender Blues Junior I bought yesterday is easily the most amazing, immense, meat and potatoes amp I've ever bought(as if we expected anything less from Fender). I run my Boss ME-50 through it so I get the 'kick-in-the-nuts' metal sound I look for. As earlier said it is a meat and potatoes kind of amp, with a simple 3-Band EQ, master and volume knobs, an amazing spring reverb knob, and a FAT switch, which gives you that classic Fender crunch. The only let-downs are that it's a single channel amp, so I can't run my iPod into it or jam with a friend, and that there isn't a gain knob, so I can't control the FAT distortion. However the amp is very easy to take apart to install new valves, repairs etc, but I would suggest when changing valves, that you order in the Fender ones for this amp, otherwise it's just not the same. // 9

Sound: I put my Custom 2007 Fender Japanese Telecaster w/neck humbucker through my Boss ME-50 and into my Blues Junior. I find the neck humbucker gives the amp much more of a boost rather than the less powerful single-coil that comes with the Tele. When put through my distortion pedal, it gives the amp probably one of the best sounds on earth, not to mention the fantastic clean sound you get when put straight into the amp with middle on 1, bass and treble on 12, reverb on 4, volume on 12, master on whatever, and FAT switch off. The clean channel doesn't distort the slightest bit until 11 or 12 so very reliable for gigging, however if you want distortion, I suggest you buy an FX pedal. // 9

Reliability & Durability: It seems to be a very durable amp from what I've been told, and it proved that after I lugged it back from London to Surrey yesterday. I would gig with it without backup, however may consider bringing spare valves to gigs when the sound begins to fail. Because of the fact that I've only had the amp 2 days, though, I can't really judge the reliability or durability, however friends Who have the same amp say that it is very reliable and durable. // 8

Overall Impression: For a blues, rock, and metal guitarist such as myself this amp is perfect when matched with the right distortion pedal(I suggest the Boss MT-2). I have been playing for 5 years and have gone through various amps over time, and after my last amp, a Laney, broke again, I knew I had to up my budget a bit. I couldn't have made a better choice, because as I see it, you get what you pay for. If it were stolen or lost, I would see no choice but to buy it, or another Fender amp, because they are the best, and there's n two ways about that. I love the look of the amp, the tone of the amp, the playability and durability and just about everything else, so if you want a valve amp for small gigs and practice, this is it. // 9

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overall: 8.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: unregistered, on january 19, 2010
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Price paid: C$ 575

Features: Mine was made in 2007, bought it in 2008. It's a fairly versatile amp in my books. It shines in terms of blues and rock type genres. It's got one channel with fairly standard controls like reverb, master volume, bass, treble, mids, volume, and a fat switch. In terms of the fat switch its like a mid boost with the slightest grit to it. I have gigged with it, mainly being put through the P.A. System. I gigged with it a couple times in small venues without being miced up and it did alright, I had to have it on 12 the whole gig. It's a great tube amp for studio use and live use to some extent. // 8

Sound: I use two guitars through this amp, a Fender Standard MIM Strat and a Epiphone Les Paul Standard with Seymour Duncan Alnico II's. I used to play solely blues but I moved onto hard rock as I always loved and this amp does justice in that area. I run a total of 6 pedals through this, them being a Line 6 Echo Park, MXR Phase 90, MXR Zakk Wylde Overdrive, Ibanez TS9, Ibanez TS7 and a Dunlop Original Crybaby wah. I use the wylde overdrive as my main rock tone and I have the Blues Junior with the volume set on 7 with the master wherever and with this I get an amazing beautiful punchy crunch. I use the two tube screamers for either boosting solo's or for blues tones. This amp handles pedals like a motherf--ker(in a good way). // 9

Reliability & Durability: well unfortunately mine just blew up about three weeks ago and I'm just in the process of getting it back. The reason it blew is because I was gigging with it and I had it cranked up to 12 for about three hours so it gave way. But in terms of all the times I gigged with it before that it worked perfectly, no malfunctions at all. So other than this one incident its been great. // 8

Overall Impression: This amp is pure gold to me. It suits my genre perfectly and I enjoy playing much more when I'm using this amp. I've been gigging with this amp for about two years and other than the time I blew it up its been fine(I've also blown up two tubescreamers) But overall if this amp was stolen I'd find the bastard who took my amp and gitter back! But I'd buy it again if needed. // 9

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overall: 7.5
Blues Junior Reviewed by: unregistered, on october 22, 2010
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Price paid: £ 270

Purchased from: eBay

Features: The Fender Blues Junior is a single channel, 15W all-tube combo with a single 8ohm 12" speaker and is presented in the style of Fender's popular Hot Rod series of tube amps. My particular example is a second-generation 2006 model as was made in Mexico. I bought this amp second-hand, but barely used, so it has the original tubes and no other modifications. The amp uses 3x 12AX7 preamp and 2x EL-84 output 'Groove Tubes' producing 15W @ 8ohms. While it is a conveniently sized, compact and portable amp, it has more than enough volume and headroom to handle live performances and full band practices. I say this with experience! What features do I wish it had? Maybe a footswitch for the reverb and a standby Switch instead of just an on/off toggle, but apart from that it does what it does - a simple, no frills tube combo. // 8

Sound: Ultimately, tone is what you make it and what you make of it! As far as putting my review of the sound this amp; my preferred weapon of choice is a Fender Japan '62 reissue Jazzmaster with Seymour Duncan pickups and simplified circuitry = lovely single coil tones and a bit more sparkle than a stock model. Fender amps are regarded for providing clear, clean tones and this amp is no exception. Volume is controlled by a combination of Master control and a Volume control so you can push the gain and roll back the volume for natural tube overdrive or do the opposite to retain clean tone at volume. EQ is shaped by individual bass, mid and treble controls. The built-in spring Reverb is also on a similar knob and you only need a touch - it can get a bit too 'wet' otherwise. At practice volumes the clean sound is pure and warm, at louder volumes it will start to break up naturally, but isn't this the point of a smaller tube amp? It means it works! This is a single channel amp so it does not have a switchable Drive channel. While you can crank up the gain to get natural overdrive from pushing the tubes, you will not be able to flick a Switch for full on distortion. The good news is that having a great pure tone as a base means pedals sound great through this amp. I use a Proco RAT and a Boss SD-1 for more distorted sounds. The last thing to mention is the FAT switch. This is a little toggle switch that will boost the mids and bass to 'fatten' up the sound. I use this all the time as it beefs up the sound, which can sound a little thin and boxy without. Don't get me wrong, this amp sounds great as it is, but if you're really into seeking the best possible tone from it you may want to consider one or more of the various modifications that exist. There is a highly regarded guy on the web who sells upgrade kits and knows these amps inside out - it is possible to make this amp compete with more boutique equivalents without spending that much. So, I rate this amp on the stock sound... // 7

Reliability & Durability: It is sturdy, weighty enough to feel solid and strong but also not too heavy that you can't carry it in one hand and your guitar in the other. I am confident in this amp enough for small/medium gigs (mic it up and let the PA handle the volume, the amp is for the tone!) and have not had any reliablity issues. My only critisicms are that I had to open the back (careful of the 400V folks DO NOT OPEN IT UP unless you know what you're doing) and separate a wire that was causing a rather annoying hum. Also, the the on/off switch feels a bit flimsy and the the control knobs wobble a bit - this is because of the PCB mounted pots. There is potential here for someone to drop something on the controls or accidentaly push them down which could break them off the PCB and cause wallet-ache. Fender are doing this to keep the price down and make these amps affordable to us, but it is nevertheless a design weakness. On a similar topic, my Hot Rod DeVille 212 broke down a month ago and the repair is still eluding my techie friend. Lets hope the Blues Junoir is not destined for a similar fate. To conclude; treat it with care and it you shouldn't have any unexpected problems. // 7

Overall Impression: I've ranted on enough so I'll try to keep this it brief. I've been playing for 7 years now and have owned a couple of amps already, a Peavey Transtube, and the aforementioned DeVille (which I'd love to bring back from limbo). I got this amp to replace the DeVille in situations where lugging a very heavy 60W combo around outweighs the reward of that amp's Empire State Building-sized headroom. The trade off? Well it is a 15W amp so it will require a mic-into-PA for mid sized venues with a full band or you could get lost in the mix. Tone wise it is really good, a little boxy but that is probably due to it being fairly small and open-backed. there's a couple of quality issues but nothing that puts me off or affects the sound. I would definately consider buying another if this was lost or stolen because it is a very affordable, capable and convenient amp. It is due to get a mod kit from the aforementioned 'guy' which improves the overall sound of the amp even further. I'm doing this not because it sounds bad in the first place, but because it is a good amp that is popular enough to have developed a following dedicated to unleashing it's true potential. I highly recommend this amp! // 8

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overall: 9.8
Blues Junior Reviewed by: Stevegio, on march 11, 2011
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 499

Purchased from: American Musical

Features: 1 channel that wrote the book on Tube tone from a 15 watt amp. I've played and own a LOT of tube amps but there is no better tube amp the the NEW Blues Jr III. No of the other makers come close. If only they'd add a standby switch. Love the red Jewel and the version III has better protection for the tubes while still allowing fairly easy access to the tubes and board. // 9

Sound: NOTHING on the market sounds like a Blues Jr. If your into classic Rock, Blues or Jazz this amp is THE go-to amp. If your into metal get a Bugera. Nothing can give you better clean and Reverb than a blues jr. Breaks up nicely and oversaturates with ease. This is the finest 15W tube amp on the market and I'll take this amp over anyother for gigs and blues. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Built like a Tank and know they have the tubes proteceted too. a solid 10. They/ve made thei amp to last a lifetime and I have no doubt with just normal maintinebce this amp can easily last you a lifetime. They aren't the most popular tube amp in the world because they say Fender on them, they're the most popular 15W tube amp in thw world because they have the best soung for the dollar you can buy anywhere. // 10

Overall Impression: You can shop every amp out there. I own a Jey City 333 20watt Tube half stack (LOVE IT)... A Blackheart Handsome Devil 15/7 watts and a Bugera V22 and this is the BEST all around sound from any of them although I am REally impressed with the Jrt City and really dissapointed in the Bugera V22 but this is my giging go-to amp. // 10

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