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  1. #1

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    I restarted playing guitar recently. I bought a hollowbody (ibanez ak95 with Gibson '57 PU's) because of the sound and shape.
    In the past i owned lots of amps. I think i liked my Rivera R55 best. Great amp.
    But not for home-use ofcourse. And the budget changed. I'm not going to spent over a €1.000 on an amp.

    Right now i temporary use an Orange Crush 20. It does the job, but is in no way an amp that sounds good (although i was pleasantly surprised how it sounded considering it costs €125 new!). I know what my guitar sounds like on a good amp and i want a bit (more) of that in the future.

    My list of 'demands':
    - not to big and certainly not to heavy.
    - low wattage. or at least a good sound on lower volumes
    - i don't need a screaming overdrive but it's allways fun to have one.
    - i don't mind mids
    - not to many knobs. Although i understand the concept of modeling, i just need the one good sound.
    - budget €200 to €300, used is no problem.


    So far, my shortlist is very short:
    - Roland Bluescube Hot (because i remember bluescubes sound good and it has that neat option to choose wattage!)
    - Laney cub (super) 10

    Any other suggestions?
    Last edited by Marcel_A; 06-24-2020 at 06:29 AM.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Other amps that fit your criteria and you might wish to consider:
    - Boss Katana 50
    - Yamaha THR10

  4. #3

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    I found that even a low-wattage tube amp - think Princeton etc. - only sounds best a little above 'room-temperature ' whereas a Polytone or my Henriksen BUD gives me a round and satisfyingly warm sound at almost a whisper.
    But still, any speaker has to move some air in order to produce sound so there is a threshold under which it doesn't really work. Another aspect to consider is the type of guitar you're using : a solidbody guitar has almost no acoustic volume so we easily hear it's electric sound coming from the speaker at a very low
    level whereas an archtop is usually much louder (being an acoustic guitar to begin with) so the desired electric tone will have to be louder still in order to 'surpass' the initial acoustic volume of the instrument.
    The choices are many today and if I were looking for a small-footprint amp for practice at home I'd go for a used Bud (or one of the other Henriksen amps, which are often even cheaper than the Bud), Polytone Baby Brute/Teeny Brute, ZT Lunchbox, along those lines.

  5. #4

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    Fender Champion 40 1x12
    Fender Champion 50XL 1x12
    Last edited by cosmic gumbo; 06-14-2020 at 08:03 AM.

  6. #5

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    A used DV Mark Little Jazz?

  7. #6

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    Yes, I really like my Little Jazz. Sounds good at bedroom levels, or at full volume, and anywhere in between. No overdrive, though.

  8. #7

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    +1 for DVMLJ or THR10. The LJ doesn’t have any overdrive but will take pedals nicely. The Yamaha is just a great practice amp and even works for low volume jams. Plus it’s really portable (as is the LJ). And Yamaha has crunch and overdrive on tap - modeled rather than actual tubes, but really fine models.

  9. #8
    The little jazz is an option. I looked at some reviews and prices second hand. Seems like a straighforward amp for little money.
    An OD-pedal is an option. Preferably on the amp, but if the little jazz sounds really great i could live with that.

    Nobody is mentioning the fender blues junior or the pro junior? How do they hold up on the fenderish clean department?

  10. #9

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    Blues Jr is a great low wattage tube amp. Won’t do screamin’ high gain without a pedal. Great crunch tone. My son has one. Not sure about getting a clean jazz tone out of it but I’m sure others here can comment (and probably already have).

    For example here.

  11. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel_A View Post
    Nobody is mentioning the fender blues junior or the pro junior? How do they hold up on the fenderish clean department?
    I have one of those as well as the two I mentioned before, ruled it out due to the “certainly not too heavy” requirement :-)
    It can easily produce a good clean jazz tone (at least with a humbucker equipped hollow-body), in fact, I keep mine in the practice space where I get together with a few friends to play jazz standards each week.

  12. #11
    I don't think that is too heavy. Although 14 kg's is not light. I don't intend to move it around that much, so maybe that requirement is not that important.

  13. #12

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    Award-Session BluesBaby 22 review | Guitar.com | All Things Guitar





    I put a Jensen NEO 12-100 speaker in mine and made a pine cab. It weights just under 8.5 kg!
    Last edited by Little Jay; 06-13-2020 at 01:04 PM.

  14. #13
    i played over a sessionette 75 a few times . I remember them being loud. And crunchy.

    this 22 seems like a really nice amp. I'm not sure they are on the market in Holland though.

  15. #14

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    The Octal tube Harmony 8418 is fantastic for low volumes - octal preamp tube gives it an interesting clean sound and a bit of drive when cranked up, all hand wired, plus the Jensen speaker in there sounds great

    it is really quiet and nice sounding, I’m not sure what exactly it is about it, but I can crank it up and not bother my wife in The next room

  16. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel_A
    i played over a sessionette 75 a few times . I remember them being loud. And crunchy.

    this 22 seems like a really nice amp. I'm not sure they are on the market in Holland though.
    You can order them directly from Award Session! The cost are very reasonable (now that the Brexit is not yet a fact).

    Award-Session website, BluesBaby 22, BluesBaby 45, Guitar Amp, Session
    Last edited by Little Jay; 06-13-2020 at 05:28 PM.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by tfling
    The Octal tube Harmony 8418 is fantastic for low volumes - octal preamp tube gives it an interesting clean sound and a bit of drive when cranked up, all hand wired, plus the Jensen speaker in there sounds great

    it is really quiet and nice sounding, I’m not sure what exactly it is about it, but I can crank it up and not bother my wife in The next room
    Agreed... it's like that was it's specific design parameters.

  18. #17

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    Egnater Tweaker 15. Great Fendery cleans, very versatile (though only one channel) and though they sound best past 1 o'clock on the volume (which at 15w is damned loud), they get really good tones -- especially cleans -- below that threshold too. No reverb either, so that could factor into your decision.

  19. #18

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    I use either my Fender Vibro Champ, or my new favorite:

  20. #19
    Oke, that's an interesting amp. Any experience with the tsa 15 perhaps?

  21. #20

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    Looks like the DV Mark Little Jazz sometimes sells new within your budget.

    Great amp. Sounds good to me at low volumes and I've played big band gigs with it.

  22. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Looks like the DV Mark Little Jazz sometimes sells new within your budget.

    Great amp. Sounds good to me at low volumes and I've played big band gigs with it.
    probably prefer the 12 inch one.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by citizenk74 View Post
    I use either my Fender Vibro Champ, or my new favorite:

    citizenk74, Ya better call Saul.............................................. .............................. Cool Citizen

  24. #23

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    Cheapest Route or Most Expensive?

    Boss Cube or Katana is unbelievable in price and options.
    Quilter Aviator amps especially 1x8" combo fantastic cleans!

    Tube Wise: Fender Princeton or Blues Jr
    Older Gibson GA series from the 1950's my favorite!


    Tons of Boutique offerings from Carr, Bartell, Dr Z, Hand Wired Fender C S, etc....

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel_A View Post
    probably prefer the 12 inch one.
    I haven't played thru a 12". I heard an online comparison somewhere. It sounds a little fuller than the 8".

    That said, the 8" sounds great for all the things I do: practice, recording, quartet, octet and big band. The big band is a stretch, but nobody is mic'ed in that band. I play mostly as a kind of shadow behind the piano, although some tunes require more, and the amp handles it. Solos cut thru fine.

    15 lbs, 10 inch or so, cube. Usually sells for $350 to $399 and I've seen it on sale for $299.

    Negatives, if you can call them that: Doesn't come with a case. Can't back it up to a wall, because there's a rear port. I wouldn't mind if I could turn the bass down even further than zero (odd, considering the small speaker). Can't use the reverb too wet' although my son likes it turned up high, I don't.

    Positives: Sounds great. Seems to have a wide dispersal pattern, maybe because of the rear port. Weight. Size. Price. Seems well made. I've dropped it badly twice and it is still fine. You can buy a cuica case that fits it perfectly for about $70 -- I haven't bothered. I carry it in a canvas shopping style bag.

  26. #25

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    Yamaha THR all the way.

  27. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    I haven't played thru a 12". I heard an online comparison somewhere. It sounds a little fuller than the 8".

    Solos cut thru fine.
    Good to read. Although this amp will be for home-use, sooner or later somebody is going to ask me to join in. I'm a bit worried how amps like the small yamaha and boss katana hold up when playing together. Some of those smaller seem to have a HiFi-quality to them and that's not what i like.

    Another thing: the blues junior seems to be to expensive on the second hand market, but the junior pro is offered within my budget (give or take). The setup will be in that case cleans on de pro junior and an OD from a pedal. How long is a pro junior clean? Is it possible to play rhythm alongside a drummer/bass combo?

  28. #27

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    I've played my Little Jazz at painfully loud blues/rock jams, and it could be easily heard through the much bigger amps used by everyone else, with the volume not much above noon. It sounded fine to me there, and it sounds about the same at bedroom levels. I think the others at the jams were using Fender or Fender-style amps with big scoops and no mids, and the Little Jazz, with plenty of mid output even with the knob at noon, filled that void. The drummer was deaf and much too loud, but I could easily be heard over him even with 4 or 5 other guitars playing chords at the same time. The Little Jazz is more than loud enough for me, and sounds the same at any volume level. But it's not a Fender, and it does not do crunch/overdrive/distortion on its own. For that you need a pedal, and it takes pedals very well.

  29. #28
    Quiet an acomplishment for such a small amp. Based on specs i would have preferred the 12 inch version, but you guys make me doubt.

    Oh and those mids. That's where 'it' happens. With any amp. They make the difference between cutting through and not. I played with lots of players who had dailed in there sound at home, just to be drawned when playing together. A simple twich at the middle control fixed that problem most of the time.
    That's why i have a slight preference to tubes. They cut through better.
    But lets calm down . . . . i'm looking for a small amp for practicing purposus . . .

  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell
    I've played my Little Jazz at painfully loud blues/rock jams, and it could be easily heard through the much bigger amps used by everyone else, with the volume not much above noon. It sounded fine to me there, and it sounds about the same at bedroom levels. I think the others at the jams were using Fender or Fender-style amps with big scoops and no mids, and the Little Jazz, with plenty of mid output even with the knob at noon, filled that void. The drummer was deaf and much too loud, but I could easily be heard over him even with 4 or 5 other guitars playing chords at the same time. The Little Jazz is more than loud enough for me, and sounds the same at any volume level. But it's not a Fender, and it does not do crunch/overdrive/distortion on its own. For that you need a pedal, and it takes pedals very well.
    Well said. For me, there's a point where my amp is as loud as I ever want to play. If I need the amp to be louder, the stage volume is likely to be deafening. At that point, I lose detail in my hearing and I go to earplugs which never sound great (I have etymotic and others). If the FOH needs more, there ought to be a PA.

    So, the question becomes, is the amp capable of being as loud as I ever want to play? The LJ is in that ballpark. I know plenty of people who are willing to play louder than I care to play, so maybe it wouldn't work for them. But, I continue to be impressed.

  31. #30

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    Another vote for a Fender Blues Jr. it’s my favorite at home amp. Good clean jazz tone and you can get crunch at low volume by adjusting the volume and master controls.

  32. #31

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    Fender Super Champ XD or X2 15W 6V6 1x10 is a sweet tone machine.

  33. #32
    The super champ has 16 voicings and fx. I don't know. The fx are probably useless. And 16 voicings. . . . I just don't need/want them.

    On the other hand . . . the clean channel seems to sound good.
    Last edited by Marcel_A; 06-16-2020 at 01:25 PM.

  34. #33
    i'm slowly picking up the pace here. Blackstar. Seems to be a big thing nowadays? i ran into quiet an impressive review with some beautifull cleans.
    Has anyone experience with this amp?

  35. #34

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    Blackstar makes a 1-watt tube amp with 8" speaker.

  36. #35
    That an interesting amp aswell. I'm a bit concerned how long it stays clean. At home i don't need a lot of headroom, but 1 watt is not much.

  37. #36

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    One of the most underrated low wattage (all tube!) amps is the Laney Cub8.
    Guitar Amp for Low Volumes-9508648c-8d6f-4219-8365-b2eb95020d53-jpg
    Single ended class A, 6V6 powered, 8“ speaker, 5 watts.
    That little amp‘s got an amazing clean tone especially a hair before breakup. Very very close to a vintage Champ. One of my best discoveries.

  38. #37
    I like the simplicity of it. How does it sound?

  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stefan Eff
    One of the most underrated low wattage (all tube!) amps is the Laney Cub8.
    Guitar Amp for Low Volumes-9508648c-8d6f-4219-8365-b2eb95020d53-jpg
    Single ended class A, 6V6 powered, 8“ speaker, 5 watts.
    That little amp‘s got an amazing clean tone especially a hair before breakup. Very very close to a vintage Champ. One of my best discoveries.
    There is another bundling of this amp under the Monoprice brand. I have it and like it.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  40. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcel_A
    I like the simplicity of it. How does it sound?
    To me very close to a vintage (silverface) Champ, just lacking the tube rectifier (not a big loss). Very dynamic and responsive. Amazing american clean tone. The hi channel is very bright, I prefer the lo channel for my Telecaster. I‘ll swap the speaker for the great Warehouse G8C, the best 8“ speaker I know (loud, american vintage type speaker that sounds more like a 10“ speaker). And it‘s a very quiet amp!

    I‘m not a big friend of PCB-tube amps, but the Laney is build very clean, simple and solid. And darn cheap to get 2nd hand.

  41. #40

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    The OP already mentioned the Roland Blues Cube, so I'll expand on that amp maker's selection of small, versatile amps.

    Any of the Roland GX series amps might meet your needs. From the lowly GX Micro Cube, 10GX, 40GX, 80GXL to the GX80 these small amps offer a ton of tones for the money. Check the used market for the best deals, and since the 40 and 80 series are discontinued.

  42. #41
    Yeah, the cubes. I owned one + 20 years ago. They are nice and you are absolutely right it would do the job. It just has to many options i don't want/need.
    My list is down to:

    Bluescubes
    Fender blues junior (probably to expensive) or super champ (this is the only modeling amp i'm willing to give a shot because the clean seems ver nice).
    Blackstar ht5 (i prefer the mark ii, but the mark i seems oke aswell)

    I changed my mind about the overdrive channel. The amp has to have one. I don't want the hassle of different cables and powersuplies for pedals. Out goes the DV Little jazz (wich seems like an extremely good bang for the buck).

    The Laney seems interesting too. I'll be checking that out aswell.

  43. #42

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    You gotta know what you want: Solid state? Digital emulations? Real tube circuits?

  44. #43
    Whatever sounds good.

  45. #44

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    In your list of demands you stated" "i don't need a screaming overdrive but it's allways fun to have one"
    But now the LJ is out because it doesn't have an overdrive. If you only use it occasionally maybe it's not that much trouble to hook up a pedal.

    I have a Cube 30x and I thought it was a great amp, until I bought the LJ. It is so much better than the Cube. I also have a Fender TMDR which I haven't used since I got the LJ. One downside of the LJ: there's a hiss on the headphones out.

  46. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joeontheguitar
    In your list of demands you stated" "i don't need a screaming overdrive but it's allways fun to have one"
    But now the LJ is out because it doesn't have an overdrive. If you only use it occasionally maybe it's not that much trouble to hook up a pedal.

    I have a Cube 30x and I thought it was a great amp, until I bought the LJ. It is so much better than the Cube. I also have a Fender TMDR which I haven't used since I got the LJ. One downside of the LJ: there's a hiss on the headphones out.
    I've been using a Cube 40XL at a rehearsal space when I don't bring the LJ. I played an outdoor gig with the Cube one time. Octet, big backyard party. The Cube was plenty loud enough.

    I prefer the LJ. The Cube has more bells and whistles. The LJ sounds better for what I do. It's been loud enough for everything so far and I'm not sure I'll ever want to play louder than it can play.

  47. #46

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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmic gumbo
    Fender Super Champ XD or X2 15W 6V6 1x10 is a sweet tone machine.
    I've never played through an X2, but both the XDs I've played (total time, about an hour) were great amps. At $200 used they'd fill the bill nicely here. I heard enough in that hour to make me think the $200 would be well spent; the only reason I didn't go with that is that at the time it wouldn't have been enough for what we were doing.

  48. #47
    The Roland Cubes are good. I had one 20 years ago.
    I never used the OD's on it. i remember them being pretty artificial.

    If a fender super champ is for sale used i will give it a try.
    Last edited by Marcel_A; 06-22-2020 at 03:12 AM.

  49. #48

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    I have a Super Champ X2 head, very happy with it. At home, I connect it to a 10 " low-efficiency cab so neighbors and wife would not complain. At jams, I can connect it to a 12" Eminence Wizard (102.8 dB) and get very loud.

  50. #49
    I replaced the fender for the Laney cub super 10. Affordable and simpel!

  51. #50
    Anyone experience with the boss nextone?