A guide to buying an Amplifier for your Guitar

With so many guitar amplifiers on the market its difficult to know which one to buy.  In general there are two types of guitar amps.

1. Valve Amplifiers (also known as Tube Amps).

2. Transistor Amplifiers.

As with most things in music it comes down to what type of sound you like.  For example if you look at Bob Dylan’s voice, some people love his voice whereas others don’t!

For me tube amplifiers are the king here.  Blues players often go for them because the more you turn then up (or drive them as we say), the more natural overdrive you get and it is a sweet ‘tubey’ overdrive compared with the more ‘waspy’ distortion that can often come through the artificial gain of a solid state amp.

Also don’t be fooled by wattage!

A 15 watt value amp will be much louder than its solid state counterpart.  Throughout the years tube amps have been played by the most influential guitarists.  Hendrix played Marshalls (although he did add pedals to give him extra distortion!).  Clapton played through a Vox AC30 with Cream.

All the old blues guys used  really simple tube amps to great effect.  From Muddy Waters to John Lee Hooker through to SRV and Buddy Guy.

I myself use a Fender Deluxe Reverb.  This is a fantastic Amp when cranked all the way up.  Having said this, many Rock and Metal guitarists do prefer solid state amps because they give more distortion at lower volumes than tube amps do!


Fender Amplifier


Marshall Amplifier

To hear the sound of a Fender Deluxe Reverb re-issue take a look at my YouTube video (played with a Fender Telecaster).

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