Beginner's Guide to Guitar and Bass Amplifiers
Guitar and Bass Amplifiers
Amplifiers (Amps) allow you to amplify the sound of your guitar.
Guitarists playing in their room may find a small 10 to 30-watt practice amp with 4-inch to 10-inch speakers most suitable.
Bassists playing in their room may find a small 15 to 50-watt practice amp with 6-inch to 15-inch speakers most suitable. Due to the low frequencies of the bass, bass amps need more power to push more sound from the speaker.
If you don't want your neighbours or flatmates to hear you practice, make sure the amp you choose has a headphone jack. Almost all our practice amps have this as standard.
Guitarists wishing to join a band or play concerts may prefer louder 50 to 150+ watt models with speakers 10-inches to 15-inches in diameter.
Bassists may need 60 to 300+ watt amps for on stage use.
Amplifiers can have one control or more than a dozen. In general it?s useful to have an amp with:
- An on/off switch.
- A volume control.
- Separate tone controls for treble and bass. More expensive amps may also have a midrange control to adjust the tone between bass and treble.
- It?s also important to have a reverb control. This helps you sound as if you are playing in a large hall. Which in turn makes your sound better.
Types of Guitar and Bass Amps
Companies such as, Fender, Marshall, Line 6, Oldfield, Mesa Boogie, Ampeg, Orange, Peavey, Roland, Trace Elliot, and Vox make traditional amps for electric guitars, bass amps for bass guitars and acoustic amps for acoustic-electric hybrids and other pickup-equipped acoustic guitars.
The different amps bring out the best tonal qualities of each type of instrument. Pricing and sound quality also depend on the type of technology an amp uses.
Solid-state amplifiers use transistors to amplify the instrument. They are lighter than tube amps, cost less and sound great for the cost. Ideal for beginners
Valve amps amplify sound using vacuum tubes. They are heavier than solid-state amps and often more expensive. Many guitarists prefer the sound they produce to solid-state amps. Based on the technology of the 1940s & 50s these amps produce a warmer, fuller sound than most other types of amp.
Modelling amps use digital processors to simulate the sound of a tube amp. You can usually preset tones and many include built-in digital effects.
These amps provide all the digital processing of the modelling amps with the addition of the vacuum tubes from a valve amp. A perfect hybrid.
Amplifiers can also come in several configurations: A single cabinet houses amplifier circuitry and speakers.
Combines cabinets and a head. Marshall and best known for stacks.
Cabinet that can securely mount multiple speakers and amplifiers. Until you begin playing concerts, it's probably best to stick with an amp in your price range that has basic features.
Important Notes: -
Guitar amps are designed only for guitars, do not use a bass guitar in a guitar amp, as this will damage the speaker due to the low frequencies of a bass.