The Blues Junior III (Tweed) is my only amp. I play it pretty clean (Volume and Master on 4-5) It's always mic'd and it sounds great! They are pretty well known for taking pedals well. And it's really got a great drive sound too, though I prefer pedals for that.
Also, I put a Celestion V30 in it and JJ tubes. HUGE improvement!
I use a Blues Junior III clean with pedals and it works great stock but I made a lot of changes to the amp which I think sounds way better than stock. I did some simple circuit tweaks, changed all the tubes a 12AY7 in V1 is key to getting a nice clean tone that can handle getting hit with dirt pedals and I also put the chassis into a larger cabinet the same size as a Hot Rod Deluxe!
Here is what it looks like now!
Really good. It works especially well with pedals having strong mids - loves my Barber DDSS and Cusack Screamer. But it also works well with my TIM. It's very touch sensitive. For higher gain I prefer to use a different amp like a MK IV but for low to mid gain the BJ III is just fine.
IMO, yes. But they are very different amps. 40 watts, 2 channels, large cabinet vs 15 watts, single channel master volume, small cabinet. The Hot Rod has a lot more bass which I personally thought helped out a lot when running fuzz pedals. Other pedals are pretty much a wash between the two. The Blues Jr. takes pedals exceptionally well though. I certainly wouldn't buy one over the other just for that factor alone.
I use a blues jr(with a Crex) to gig with and find that it takes pedals very well. I also have a hot rod DeVille 410(60W) I used to gig with. On their own, the deville sounds more full, with more bass, but in a band setting, this seems to get lost. I find that the blues jr. cuts through the mix better. But maybe it's just my short coming in setting up the deville.