The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
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  1. #1

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    Is there a small-ish headphone amp that has an aux input for silent practice with tracks? Right now I have to run my guitar and the headphone out of the laptop into my Yamaha mixer, then monitor the whole mess through headphones - there's gotta be a better way. I generate my own tracks with BIAB or Real Band then convert them to mp3 and put them on my phone or tablet. Maybe the Dunlop version of the old Tom Scholz Rockman thingy - I think they call it 'Guitar Ace'. Open for suggestions but don't want to break the bank. Both of my amps (Evans (RE200 & Quilter 101R) have headphone jacks for silent practice but there's no way to input mp3s in to the mix. I've read where the Quilter effects return won't let you do it - don't know about the Evans.

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  3. #2

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    This is great, rechargeable lithium battery, doubles as preamp, excellent sound quality:

    bighead_ha-1.pdf

  4. #3

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    Not sure if this would work for you or the planned budget, but I have a Yamaha THR-10C that I use in that way quite a bit. It's a small practice amp that sounds pretty good. I run it on batteries and carry it around the house. It has a headphone jack, so when I need to be super quiet, I use that. I can also use it as a small low output amp for just sitting on the couch or whatever, or jack in an iPhone or iPod to play back music just for listening. They don't make the 10C anymore, but there are a few models. Downside is the cheapest costs about $200. Upside is it doesn't sound half bad and can be used for other purposes.

    Amazon.com

    Later: I just read your post again and now realize you want to play along with mp3s. This box can't do that. I added a two channel mixer for that purpose, but it adds to the expense and needs AC power. The same problem you're facing, I guess. So I can see I wasn't much help! At least I tried, LOL. Good luck. I'm also curious what the smarter cats can suggest. The Phil Jones unit looks interesting.
    Last edited by Flat; 06-18-2022 at 05:15 PM.

  5. #4

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    You leave out a crucial bit of info (explicitly at least): what output are you expecting from that headphone amp, and what are you going to be connecting to the aux input? Does the Yamaha mixer go into the computer you mention, over USB?

    The Yam mixers I've looked at all had headphone outputs, so you shouldn't need an additional headphone amp for your monitoring headphones. The mixers I've seen also had line-in inputs which should accept a simple 3.5 trs cable from your phone or tablet (assuming they still have output jacks).

  6. #5

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    You could use one of these:

    https://www.boss.info/us/products/tu-88/

    They are unfortunately no longer in production, but they seem to show up in the used market fairly frequently:

    BOSS TU-88 Micro Monitor & Tuner Black Guitar Tuner Works 4957054408985 | eBay

    BOSS TU-88 Micro Monitor & Tuner Black Guitar Tuner AY19847 4957054408985 | eBay

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/17525425044...wAAOSw7pFiZBgP

    BOSS TU-88 micro monitor Used | eBay

    ...and at least 3 more on reverb.com. You can plug in your guitar and an audio device such as your phone, MP3 player, etc., and your headphones and listen to your guitar and MP3 player, as well as using the built in tuner and metronome - everything one would need to practice silently as far as the rest of the house and neighborhood are concerned. Everything in one small device keeps it all very simple and inexpensive.

    Tony

  7. #6

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    Rock Bug | carl

    try this on for size.
    Play your phone/iPod/whatever into the auxiliary. Guitar in the side, blend to taste and headphone with cab emulation out the side. Also acts as a backup AIAB with trs out or xlr out. Battery or external supply.
    Use mine all the time for quiet practice at work.

  8. #7

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    For headphone practice... BIAB and Real Band are on your computer, why not keep everything where it started, on your computer and just use a headphone out on your computer (or audio interface)? There's a free version of amplitude to use as an amp sim.

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by fep View Post
    For headphone practice... BIAB and Real Band are on your computer, why not keep everything where it started, on your computer and just use a headphone out on your computer (or audio interface)? There's a free version of amplitude to use as an amp sim.
    Just trying to not be tied to the computer. The Boss TU-88 sounds like what I'm looking for.

  10. #9

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  11. #10

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    There really seems to be a gap in the market that a smart electronics company could fill. I wonder why Roland/BOSS discontinued the TU-88? I wish someone would make something like this for an affordable price:

    -- 2 inputs (one for guitar; one for audio files AAC, mp3, etc.)
    -- a couple high quality models (Fender blackface, Vox AC30, clean Polytone, etc.) or just a nice clean tone
    -- a headphone output jack. or maybe two for duet practicing
    -- runs on batteries for portability
    -- a 2-channel mixer to blend guitar and audio output volume
    -- a master output volume knob
    -- an effects loop that works well with my pedals would be a nice addition
    -- I don't need a tuner or metronome but they would be nice features
    Last edited by Flat; 06-19-2022 at 02:05 AM.

  12. #11

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    What about the Fender Mustang Micro? It uses bluetooth for audio in, rather than a jack, but it works very well and won't break the bank. It has good modeling capabilities, and I am very happy with the sound I get out of it:

    https://www.fender.com/en-US/guitar-...311300000.html

  13. #12

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    I use a Valeton Rushead Max for a travel headphone amp. Really nice sound quality, aux input for jamming....
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #13

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  15. #14

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    https://www.palmer-germany.com/en/pr...ocket-amp-mk-2

    Pretty much a Sansamp GT2 clone, but with a headphone amp and an aux input. Can be powered with a 9V battery. It won't break the bank.

    There might be a Behringer one for even less, because of course there is a Behringer version for less.

  16. #15

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    Audient Sono interface. Has a tube in it and, for your purpose, can do everything you want and also be used as a stand alone without connecting to your computer. Used to be expensive when it came out, but not anymore.

  17. #16

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    I am not sure if I understand. An Occam's razor approach might be best. I would run my computer into the mixer and my guitar into the mixer. Then run a headphone out.

    If I wanted a decent guitar tone, then I would buy something that lets me go direct in. The UA AITB pedals look very interesting. Tech 21 Sansamp stuff is really good.

    Typical when I have been using the programs (BITB IReel pro, Mapping Tonal Harmony), or Jimmy Abersold tracks, and wanting to play guitar through headphones, I would plug into my audio interface, run an amp modeler program. (I have used most of them and they all work). I would then run my headphones out of my interface.

    (... matter of fact this week, I was thinking about going to get a good set of cans (my old ones broke), because sometimes my neighbors play loud music. The low bass thump makes it difficult for me to practice).

  18. #17

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    How about a Boss MicroCube?

  19. #18

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    I use a Quilter Microblock. Pedal size amp-head with 45 watts of power. Auxilliary input. Can be used with headphones or with a speaker cabinet. Only downside is no reverb effect -- have to use a separate pedal.

  20. #19

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    The Boss Waza Air might be what you are looking for. I have one and it's the best practice tool I've ever purchased. I travel with it and a traveler guitar. Totally wireless, connects to my phone instantly via Bluetooth, sounds huge for me and silent for everyone else.

  21. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by pcjazz View Post
    This is great, rechargeable lithium battery, doubles as preamp, excellent sound quality:

    bighead_ha-1.pdf
    Yes, I have one and it's great. Far better build quality than anything else I've tried and it sounds very good.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flat View Post
    There really seems to be a gap in the market that a smart electronics company could fill. I wonder why Roland/BOSS discontinued the TU-88? I wish someone would make something like this for an affordable price:

    -- 2 inputs (one for guitar; one for audio files AAC, mp3, etc.)
    -- a couple high quality models (Fender blackface, Vox AC30, clean Polytone, etc.) or just a nice clean tone
    -- a headphone output jack. or maybe two for duet practicing
    -- runs on batteries for portability
    -- a 2-channel mixer to blend guitar and audio output volume
    -- a master output volume knob
    -- an effects loop that works well with my pedals would be a nice addition
    -- I don't need a tuner or metronome but they would be nice features
    I have a Korg PX5D that does most of that. The volume adjustments can be a little tricky. I think you control the mp3 volume from the mp3 player, not the Korg iirc. I haven't actually done it in a while.

    It's not that cheap.

    Sound quality is good enough that I sometimes use it as an outboard reverb.

    The thing I didn't like about it was all the wire. Bluetooth headphones would make it more comfortable, but it doesn't have bluetooth.
    Last edited by rpjazzguitar; 06-21-2022 at 06:31 PM.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar View Post
    I have a Korg PX5D that does most of that.
    The Yamaha AG0x series too, and IIRC it has some modelling capabilities (I looked into getting one but ultimately went with a Behringer UMC 204HD - which has support for effect loops where you could insert a modelling pedal).

    But the OP already has a Yamaha mixer...

  24. #23

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    I use one of these. Might as well have a small speaker as well as headphone capability.

    It has aux in as well as bluetooth in.

    https://www.amazon.com/NUX-Portable-.../dp/B07JMP2MFN

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ukena View Post
    What about the Fender Mustang Micro? It uses bluetooth for audio in, rather than a jack, but it works very well and won't break the bank. It has good modeling capabilities, and I am very happy with the sound I get out of it:

    https://www.fender.com/en-US/guitar-...311300000.html
    My first suggestion also

  26. #25

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    Zoom G1-Four will do this. I have one, and while at its price it's not the best-sounding device on the planet, it's acceptable. Around $100. If you're looking for only cleans, the A1-Four is worth a listen, at $130.