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Looking for a small 'practice amp' with 'THAT' sound...

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by advid, Oct 3, 2017.

  1. advid

    advid Electromatic

    Mar 5, 2017
    London UK
    .....just purchased a used 5120 'Electromatic' with's got a nice neck and plays good. Acoustically - not a lot coming out...SO.... can anyone recomend a nice smallish practice amp that will 'hopefully' give me that Gretsch / Chet Atkins type sound.
    Please don't tell me that I have to change the pickups and all that stuff in order to get that Chet 'twang'.....I don't really want to do that ...but I am a Chet fan and would like to try and get somewhere near that tone of his when plugged in....
    I've looked online (Amazon) at the Fender Champion 20....this looks like a verstatile little amp with plenty of tone settings and effects...could this get anywhere near it...
    Or - are there any other little amps that might do the trick ?
    Any help and advice - most welcome.
  2. LA Miles

    LA Miles Country Gent

    Dec 6, 2012
  3. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    Any stores around you have any of the Fender Bassbreaker amps. Small sound good. Might do it if dialed in. Bit pricey depending on budget and it gets a lot of other good tones as well.
  4. TSims1

    TSims1 Friend of Fred

    Jun 18, 2013
    nickurso likes this.
  5. hcsterg

    hcsterg Country Gent

    Feb 13, 2012
    A 2nd hand Roland MicroCube wouldn't be a risky little investment IMHO. I wouldn't part with my red mine. It's a killer amp for surf, 60's Rock'n'Roll and Rockab' practice with its trem/echo/reverb. Also very good for Funk and Soul. When I borrow the black one of my daughter, I can have a stereo psychedelic sound... But For a Chet Atkins style, I don't know...

    Last edited: Oct 4, 2017
    wildeman likes this.
  6. wildeman

    wildeman Friend of Fred

    May 10, 2015
    I 2nd the Microcube, i just picked up another little Boss amp called the Katana mini that also sounds great.
    Both of these amps can also run on 6x AA batteries ( for quite a while) making them super cool imo.
  7. Gretschman2

    Gretschman2 Country Gent

    Apr 8, 2013
    Enetai, WA
    Peavey Vypyrs are often overlooked, you can get them used for fairly cheap on EBay too. They are SS modeling amps, so you can dial in many of the tones you're looking for. I have a Vypyr 30 and love it for what it does as much as I do my tube amps for what they do.
    zebulon and TSims1 like this.
  8. Gimper

    Gimper Gretschie

    Oct 30, 2016
    VOX VT20+ is another very versatile option that you may be able to find Used at a very low price point.
  9. DaddyDog

    DaddyDog Country Gent

    Sep 18, 2011
    Mississauga, Canada
    Quilter plus an analog delay.
  10. wabash slim

    wabash slim Friend of Fred

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    For Chet stuff, you want clean. Solid state would be cheaper than tubes. Those small Vox amps might be right up your alley.
  11. NJDevil

    NJDevil Gretschie

    Jul 9, 2014
    Commack, NY
    For the money, I like the Tech 21 Trademark 30. You can get them for under $350
  12. Rikki Ericson

    Rikki Ericson Gretschie

    Aug 25, 2017
    For £100, get the Champion 20 as per the other thread.

    Chet's 'sound' is much more to do with his palm muting of the bass strings and expert ringing of the top strings, than any particular sort of amplifier.

    Get a nice clean sound, bordering on overdrive, add a very very quick slap-back echo, and a touch of reverb.

    Happy Days.

    Take no notice of the 'you have to spend thousands' brigade. They can't play.
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2017
  13. MarkyMac

    MarkyMac Gretschie

    i found these pretty cool. Thinking of grabbing the AV15 myself. They are getting pretty good reviews and seem good value for not much $$$$
  14. ruger9

    ruger9 Country Gent

    Nov 1, 2008
    Wow so many recommendations just to get a clean sound??? LOL

    Anything will work, seriously. (I mean, maybe not those little toy amps, or the amps Epiphone sells in their "Player Packs", but...)

    Having an amp with built-in echo and reverb certainly makes the job easier. The Microcube should do it just fine, we are talking at-home practice volumes here. Any modeler.
    Henry likes this.
  15. Waxhead

    Waxhead Country Gent

    Aug 30, 2014
    If someone wants to have Chet's tone shouldn't the 1st question be - what amps did Chet use ??
    Just having his guitar is not gonna do it imo :)
  16. MikeyUK

    MikeyUK Synchromatic

    Dec 15, 2016
    Rochdale, GB
    Vox AC4C1. £330 new. Gretsch and vox go together well. Go test one against other recommended options. We all mean well :)
  17. Ricochet

    Ricochet Gretschified

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    My new rig...;)

    zebulon likes this.
  18. Dead Roman

    Dead Roman Country Gent

    Dec 22, 2015
    Champ, blues jr, ac4...
    rytar likes this.
  19. rytar

    rytar Gretschie

    Apr 28, 2015
    I second all of Dead Roman's pics. I have auditioned many solid states and I just can't get going on them, no tubes no deal. Closest I get is one of those micro orange mini heads which are SS but do have a tube in it. Blues jr tweed is an amp so many sleep on, I recommend that or the HW AC4. Sorry amp is as important as the guitar so a little extra dough to help your baby reach it's full potential is way worth it.
  20. afire

    afire Country Gent

    Excellent suggestion. But $10,000-$15,000 for an original Standel 25L15 might be overkill for a practice amp. But $3500 for a reissue seems appropriate.