AmPlug Metal Review

manufacturer: Vox date: 05/30/2011 category: Guitar Amplifiers
Vox: AmPlug Metal
Even with its ultra-compact size, amPlug perfectly reproduces the complex and warm distortion that is distinctive of a vacuum tube, as well as the powerful high gain produced by a large amp stack. Using all new analog modeling technology, amPlug delivers full-fledged amp sound.
 Sound: 8.8
 Overall Impression: 9.2
 Reliability & Durability: 8.8
 Features: 8.2
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (6) 33 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.3
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: foo_diddles, on march 26, 2008
4 of 4 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 40

Purchased from: amazon

Features: It's pretty straight forward, a headphone amp that's supposed to sound great through headphones. I'm not the greatest player, but I got this thing so I can practice whenever I wish without disturbing any one or having to turn on my amp, since I mostly play metal on electric (acoustics are for clean sounds) this amp is great for me. It has a 1/4" jack direct to guitar, one aux input for playing along to cd's and mp3's, and one gain, one tone, and one volume control. No effects, but the line in sells it for me. // 8

Sound: My guitar is a piece of crap but it has emg's that make up for the horrible feel of shameful workmanship. It suits me very well for a headphone amp since I really just wanted distortion anywhere I go with my guitar. Even with the gain cranked and single coil pickups the hum is more of a low hiss that doesn't bug me since I know how bad hum can get from single coils. The clean sound was elusive to find and not particularly great, too dark with a wierd snap and uneven volume with fast playing. This thing wasn't designed for anything but pure distortion and the quality is better than some full sized amps. It goes from a smooth crunch into face melting, head ripping distortion with gain and tone maxed. The sound is consistent with volume changes, but since it's headphones I don't max it out. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I highly doubt it would break from normal use since it has a nicely solid feel for a plastic object. I wouldn't gig with it but I would use it for a pre-show warm up to mp3's of the setlist. It still works fine and will for a good while. // 10

Overall Impression: For playing anything high gain this amp would be perfect. I've been playing for a little over one year and have tried endlessly to match the distortion of my Peavy without having to set up an amp, I tried making a headphone amp to save the money but that disaster doesn't need to be mentioned. I am very happy with my purchase and would hunt down any thief and torture them for eternity for stealing this great amp (they could keep the guitar though). My only fault is that it doesn't have effects but the sound quality is good enough to make up for that. Anyone Who wants a practice amp couldn't go wrong if they love extreme distortion. Not for the faint of heart. // 10

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overall: 9
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: YgO, on december 13, 2010
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 30

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: Not sure when it was made. I bought it when they first came out. This is not a versatile amp, but if you like a modern metal sound, it rips! I play mostly metal and usually like a more chunky, higher midrange sound when I play through a real amp, but it's fun to use this and get a super scooped out sound for something different. It is a headphone amp only, No special effects. You can vary the tone a bit by messing with the 2 tone dials on it our the tone dials and pickups on your guitar, but again, pretty much modern metal only. I use this whenever I need to be really quiet, which is frequently, since I have a little kid who goes to bed early. It's plenty loud in the earphones though. // 8

Sound: I'm using it with a Dean Razorback 255 with EMG 81 & 85 and whammy bar. As mentioned above, I play mostly metal, so it suits me fine. It's not noisy. This thing rips when it comes to doing natural harmonics, pick harmonics and harmonic squeals! Extremely high gain. F'ing brutal distortion for such a little innocent looking thing! // 10

Reliability & Durability: Absolutely no problems whatsoever in the couple years I've owned it... Except for a short while when I didn't realize I had the phones plugged in the wrong jack and didn't know it. Duh! My bad! Batteries last a pretty long time too! I can't remember when I last changed. It does look and feel a little cheap, just plastic, but what do you expect for the price? And like I said, I've had zero problems. // 9

Overall Impression: I've been playing for almost 30 years. If this thing was lost or stolen, even if it broke, I would by another. I love the overall sound and it's high gain capabilities. Best feature is that it almost sounds like a huge beast of an amp in your head. I used to have an old Fender Headphone Pak from the '80's which was much bigger and heavier, but had more effects. The sound of this blows it away. It would be nice if the little Vox could Switch to clean, like a pedal, though. // 9

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overall: 8.3
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: JoePerry4life, on september 01, 2009
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 50

Purchased from: Ebay Seller

Features: A fairly new device. Its a headphone amp (No built in speaker), that models a high gain american voiced amp. Has a gain, tone, and volume control, and an aux in for playing along with a CD player or mp3 player. Pretty basic, but yet versatile, compact and portable. // 7

Sound: When I plugged this into a random pair of sony headphones, man was I blown away by the sound. I use an Epiphone G-400 with an MRG Rocker in the bridge, a stock AL-3000 and a partscaster with a GFS Lil Killer in the bridge. Really nice tone, honestly sounds better then most low end solid state amps, if I were a beginner I'd buy a few of these instead of an amp. Distortion can get very heavy, but can also do things like guns n roses pretty well too, minus the solo tone. I find it great for rhythm playing but not so much for lead, but there is another amplug for that anyways. Its possible to get a clean tone but only with a single coil, gain down, volume on the amplug up and lower the guitars volume a bit, it actually gives a decent clean sound with a strat. I play thrash and 80's hair metal on this and its great. Despite what you may think, it can get loud enough. I went out and bought a cheap pair of headphones, not ear buds, and it made alot of difference than the noise canceling sony ones I had. They only costed 8 bucks, so I could imagine how it sounds on a 100 dollar pair. I never got to use the aux in yet so I can't comment on that. Is this amp noisy? No its actually really quiet depending on the enviroment. For instance, when in my room with a computer on, its quiet, but when I turn my little T.V on its get a really annoying buzz, but its really not an issue once you find a place to play. I do however find the controls react to each other. For instance, if you have the gain on 10, which really isn't needed, then you probably should put the tone past 6 or 7 and volume past 3. That's right 3. Its fairly loud. I never put the volume past 4. // 9

Reliability & Durability: It comes in a plastic case which doesn't seem like a good idea. However it holds up pretty good, I dropped mine a few times and its fine. I've had it for a few weeks and never had a problem with it. I wouldn't gig with it, but take it to practice Backstage maybe. Seems prety well built for such a small palm size amp. // 8

Overall Impression: Overall, this is the best thing invented since slice bread. I'm still amazed how great this sounds. My Peavey XXX is in repair right now so this thing helped me through this wait period. I play thrash and 80'hair metal on this thing and its great, better than most low end solid states. I've been playing 3 years and have 3 other guitars and they all sound great on this thing. The only thing I don't like about it is the plastic casing, but it seems to hold fine. I love the tone. If it were stolen, I would easily buy another as its only 50 CAD. Overall, great buy, really convenient device. // 9

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overall: 9.3
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: Japanesekanji, on august 12, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 40

Purchased from: Mark's Guitar Shop

Features: This headphone amp has all you'd need for practicing metal. There's three controls: gain, tone, and volume. There's a line in and a headphone jack, both 1/8" jacks. I don't like the idea of 1 tone knob, though. But it only need two AA batteries to work, and it's very small. // 9

Sound: I'm using an Epiphone SG Special with stock pickups. It's great for metal. There's not much noise, but on high-gain settings, my palm mutes will randomly get loud and clip after a little bit. Still, the tones this thing makes are great. There's no actual clean tone, but it is made up with the extremely brutal distortion. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I'm not sure if I'd trust this on a gig. 1/8" jack plugs are not nearly as secure as a 1/4" plug would be. It hasn't broken after being generally careful with it, though. The batteries also last pretty well for me. I haven't seen any signs of damage on this, either. // 10

Overall Impression: I've been playing about 2 1/2 years, and I play metal. This thing is great for me. If I lost this, I would buy another one. Other than the 1 tone knob, I love this thing. I love the heavy distortion, though. Compared to using my Line 6 Pocket POD and my Zoom G1X, this is much smaller, more portable, and requires less batteries. // 9

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overall: 8
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: xShade, on march 29, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 39.99

Purchased from: Sam Ash NYC

Features: I have no idea what year it was made in, but I'm guessing 2011. It's good enough for me to practice/play on, and doesn't have anything fancy like different channels since it is a headphone amp. It does have a headphone jack, obviously lol. I wish it had a wheel for controlling the treble, mid, and bass. I use this amp at home mostly, but also when I go to my grandparents' house since carrying a full sized amp is a pain unless I go for a few weeks. // 8

Sound: I use a Les Paul Epiphone Special II equipped with Ernie Ball Beefy .11s. I keep my guitar on the Bridge pickup because my guitar's cheap and it's the heaviest pickup on it. It can be noisy, but it also depends on the type of headphones you're using. I use KOSS DJ headphones (can't remember the exact model) and it gets a louder the more you turn up the volume and distortion. The distortion is pretty brutal, but kinda fuzzy as well. // 8

Reliability & Durability: You can depend on this for private practicing and playing. You can't use this for a gig. It's new and has broken down at all. // 8

Overall Impression: I play a lot of hard rock, heavy metal, thrash metal, death metal, metalcore, post-hardcore, and a little grindcore. This is a great match because of how much distortion it has. I've been playing for a little over a year, and the only other amp I have is a Line 6 Spider IV 15, which I love. If it were lost or stolen, I would get another one since it's sound is solid and it's portability fantastic. I love how it sounds and how portable it is, but what bothers me is how much bass it has and how the distortion can get pretty fuzzy, although it is very good for the price. My favorite feature is how it has an AUX In port because I can connect my iPod to it and rock out to my favorite songs with out having to playing them on my laptop. As for it comparing to other products, I haven't tried any other headphone amps, but for now is my #1 choice. // 8

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overall: 8.8
AmPlug Metal Reviewed by: tonyr669, on may 30, 2011
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: I was surfing Ebay, and saw a PRS SE Santana, the new with the birds for CHEAP. I bought and in the gig bag (will be replaced the Santana merits a real case) was this little Vox thing. Hmmm, I said lets try this baby out. Never even thought about ear pods or phones, I unplugged my Altec Lansing computer spears from my laptop and plugged em into the Vox. I freaked out. It was kicka-s. My speakers are pretty loud and this thing drove them all the way. Sounds great low too. Didn't even know I could hook in my Ipod and Ipad. No idea what year it was made. Single channel, I'm a headbanger so till I read it here. This is the sound I require and it nails it. It took a couple tries to dial in the sound I wanted but overdrive city! // 9

Sound: I have the PRS SE Santana, an Ibanez RG 760 from 1989, a 1990 Epiphone Les Paul Classic Plus with an EMG in the bridge and a Burstbucker in the neck and Grover tuners, and a 1991 Gibson Les Paul Classic. Noise level is nothing to playing an overdriven valve amp, easy enought to control. Pick squeals and harmonics are good not great, but then I have a Blackstar that just screams like a banshee so the comparison is not fair. I love it because its easy to set up and play anywhere. The name is metal and that's what it does. You want clean buy a country amp. // 8

Reliability & Durability: Don't have it long enough to rate, I'm worried I'll snap it or something. Its really light and plastic. Can I gig with it? Umm no. // 8

Overall Impression: I've been playing a long time maybe older than the trees used to make my guitars. I'm a shredder and this amp keeps up and even have a slapback echo thing that I love and would try to capture in the studio. This little guy made to me and I dig it. I would buy another if I broke or it got gone somehow. When I use I'm smiling, Ain't technology great? Good job Vox! // 10

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