Your favorite practice amp?

Discussion in 'Ampage Area' started by ErickT94, May 12, 2020.

  1. afire

    afire Country Gent

    Do you have a willingness to solder and a desire to acquire a new hobby? I would say build yourself a practice amp. A tweed Champ or Princeton would be a great place to start. You can get some pretty gnarly tones at reasonable volumes, but still loud enough to at least be fun. Weber has very reasonably priced kits. The next time I build an amp, I'm thinking I might go with a Tweed Vibrolux. Weber doesn't make a 5F11, but Mojo does, although the $850 price seems a little steep to me for what it is.
  2. BohemianLikeMe

    BohemianLikeMe Gretschie

    Apr 18, 2020
    Prague, CZ
    I wish those weren’t so insanely expensive, because they’re really great amps. Best tremolo I’ve ever heard in a Fender too.
    Rmccamey and ErickT94 like this.
  3. Roger49

    Roger49 Country Gent

    Feb 18, 2015
    I'm another one with the mini Beetle - amazing little amp which sounds great at indoor 'in the house' levels but has some real umph when you need it. I love it.

  4. Telechamp

    Telechamp Country Gent

    Oct 20, 2010
    Tampa Bay

    I've got one of these myself. Got it brand new for 50 bucks at a Music123 sale about 10 years ago!


    MentalTossFlycoon and G5422T like this.
  5. MentalTossFlycoon

    MentalTossFlycoon Gretschie

    Dec 22, 2018

    You dont happen to have a Fairlane Blue G5420 to with it do you??
  6. Scott

    Scott Country Gent

    Jun 27, 2008
    Winston-Salem, NC
    IMG_20171230_100605185.jpg I have a couple of Victoria 518s. Tweed 5F1 circuit, 5 watts, 8" Jensen. Great for the living room, but I've also used them at church, and they excel in the recording studio.

    Downside? No modeling. Upside? Not necessary.
  7. johnny g

    johnny g Country Gent

    Sep 2, 2017
    union, ms
    My little 20w Fender Mustang 1 is my living room amp. I use a Roland cube 40w for my studio. Both are great amps with plenty if presets and effects.
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  8. Dana Rudd

    Dana Rudd Synchromatic

    Nov 26, 2019
    Greybull, WY
    Boss Katana 50 MK II for me, bought my granddaughter a Fender Champion 20. Both are modeling amps and serve our purposes quite well.
    ErickT94 and G5422T like this.
  9. Groutsch

    Groutsch Gretschie

    Jun 9, 2018
    Maryland, US
    +1 for the Vox Mini Super Beetle. I practice a lot while people are asleep upstairs, and the MSB can turn down to just-audible, with separate Gain and Volume knobs. It has a headphone jack too.

    My other small amps are a Vox AC10, a silverface Fender Vibro Champ, and a Vibro Champ XD with some cool amp models built in. Any of these can be played at domestic volume levels.
    Sid Nitzerglobin, ErickT94 and G5422T like this.
  10. BohemianLikeMe

    BohemianLikeMe Gretschie

    Apr 18, 2020
    Prague, CZ
    It's crazy how expensive Vibro Champs are here in the EU. I keep thinking I'll grab one and take it as a carry on home when I'm back in the US visiting my family, but who knows if and when that'll be with this virus going on.

    How is the Vibrochamp XD in comparison?
  11. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    BTW - I ment to ask is the headphone jack working out with you , the family and the neighbors ?
  12. LongJohn

    LongJohn Synchromatic

    Apr 22, 2016
    Queens, NY
    Living in a condo gives me more neighbors than I want. To keep peace I use a Digi Tech RP 360 XP. Lots of amp sims and pedals and a volume/wah pedal as well. When we can shop in a store again I would like to check out the new Mustang GTX 100. My original Mustang 111 was a neat amp that got sold in order to fund a guitar purchase. headphone jack worked well .:)
    G5422T likes this.
  13. Mr Swisher

    Mr Swisher Synchromatic

    Jun 12, 2012
    I've not used it yet. It works so well, and sounds so good, at low volume that I've been playing it without them. I couldn't be happier with it.

    My hot rod deluxe just won't operate at that low volume. Even attenuated.
    thunder58 and G5422T like this.
  14. Byron

    Byron Synchromatic

    Sep 4, 2009
    I love my Vibro Champ XD but I'm not sure it bares any resemblance to a real Vibro Champ. But it is a great amp with good tweed and blackface sounds. I record with mine, I'll post a black face/spring reverb setting
    G5422T likes this.
  15. Byron

    Byron Synchromatic

    Sep 4, 2009
    Vibro Champ xd and dynasonic style pickup in a Jet Firebird
  16. SAguitar

    SAguitar Gretschie

    Jan 17, 2020
    Jack Plate, Oregon
    Years ago, when they were the rage, I got an Epiphone Valve Jr. Then I modded it a bit with some of the tips I found on the forums, and it became my best practice amp. Junior still logs in many more hours per week than any of my other amps.
    mike77rios and G5422T like this.
  17. calebaaron666

    calebaaron666 Friend of Fred

    Aug 15, 2018
    Portland, Maine
    Hell yeah!
  18. capnhiho

    capnhiho Synchromatic

    Feb 16, 2013
    For pure practice I still use my Micro Cube RX. I replaced my original Micro Cube with the RX version because it has a built-in tuner and a versatile metronome/simple drum track function. I used to work out of town a lot and always brought along the ‘Cube and a beater guitar if I was going to be gone for over two days.

    Nowadays I’m retired but I’ve hung onto the RX mainly for the rhythm tracker. Let’s me know how sloppy I’ve gotten.
    Rodney Germany and G5422T like this.
  19. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    Glad your diggin' it
    Mr Swisher likes this.
  20. Bertotti

    Bertotti Friend of Fred

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    I just don't consider these small low watt amps practice amps. I can practice and do at low volumes with my big Half stack just as easily with the master volume. But for portability, these small amps rule! TX super forty or half stack at home, on the road it is the JSX Mini Colossal or the Nocturne Baby Blondeshell and a cab or the small Joyo Atomic or Orange Micro Dark if I don't want to haul a cab around because they both have BlueTooth and headphone outputs but put out 20watts or the small NightTrain. I think you really need to define wants and needs and physical size constraints then decide what flexibility you want before you chase a practice amp because low wattage and or size isn't the only deciding factor. For instance the JSX Mini small tube amp 8" combo or jack into an external cab, which to me is as important as wattage. A different speaker and cab can really change the whole character of an amp for better or worse or just completely different so it's like having different amps, or do you want a head only and share a cab or several cabs to mix and match? Do you want a headphone out, Bluetooth abilities, line out, variable wattages so you can have a wider range of playing available? I recently added a Fryette PS100 primarily for its impedance matching but it will take the small 5-watt BabyBlondeshell and turn it into a 100watt beast! I can use any cab I want to. I just have to be careful not to crank it too high because with 100watts available the small 15 watt cabs can cook quickly! So, my advice would be to 1 pick a tone path, British American, Fender type Vox Marshal or something that can scratch all the itches like a modern Mesa, Pick the format combo or head cab, options you need or want, ability to switch tube types, change wattages, headphone out, line out, a built-in attenuator, or does it need to have channel and master volume, fx loop, etc. You'll be surprised how you can narrow down you're choices and also open up your choices once you have a good idea of what you want. I wouldn't Pidgeon hole yourself into a choice as simple as 5 watts only or 15 watts only. I did this with a physical size limit and it lead me to the Joyo Atomic and Orange micro but the truth is that although they are very portable and do sound good they do not sound as good as an all-tube amp to me so they both go through the Fryette when I'm in the mood but for tossing something small and still sounding good into a bag they are perfect for my travels so, in this case, it was a function of light small and headphone abilities. If I was shopping for this criteria today it would probably be one of these newer pedals that would have beat both of those small amps, there are so many choices out there. Well ramble off I hope I got my point across apologies for the long post.
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