Help me buy an all-purpose amp

FoxV

Member
Messages
231
I'd love opinions and advice on which amps I should consider given these goals/consideration (in approximate order of importance):

  • Price range: $800 - $1200
  • 30 lbs or less (maybe 35 lbs, but I really want it easy to carry around...from home to work to rehearsals)
  • Good for vocals, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar (independently)
  • Could be used for Vocals + Accoustic/Electric at same time
  • For electric guitar, can get 90% toward a warm tube-sound
  • Will take pedals well
  • Could be used in small-bar gig (but will mainly be used in studio/practice room)
  • I don't need or want or care about effects. Have that already for Vocals and guitar.
  • Modest tone shaping is fine
If there are other helpful threads, please point me there. I've done quite a bit of searching on here, but I'm sure I've missed some gems.

Thanks!
 

Torren61

Member
Messages
2,035
I'll start. What about a Roland JC-120? Actually, it sounds like you need a portable PA, like a Fender Passport.
 

Ilduce

And now for something completely different!
Messages
4,597
Strongly recommend checking out Quilter's Micro Pro amps. I think that they would be right up your alley!
 

James_E

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
572
Interesting. Does this exist in a form that excels at all 3 tasks? Vocals and acoustic guitar are often best paired with "Full range" amps/speakers (PA speakers etc.). Electric guitar amps and speaker cabinets are quite different than that.
 

FoxV

Member
Messages
231
Strongly recommend checking out Quilter's Micro Pro amps. I think that they would be right up your alley!
I'm definitely checking Quilters out! They seem like the clear front runner, but if there are other/better ideas, I'm all ears!

Get ready for 100 pages of every amp ever built.
I'm ready! ;) One of the reasons I love TGP. No shortage of opinions and expertise. And sorting between the two is much better done with help as opposed to trying to do all the thinking/fretting/OCD'ing in my own overtaxed noggin!

Interesting. Does this exist in a form that excels at all 3 tasks? Vocals and acoustic guitar are often best paired with "Full range" amps/speakers (PA speakers etc.). Electric guitar amps and speaker cabinets are quite different than that.
Exactly my question, yet much more succinctly put. Seems like some of the Quilters are able to do this.
 

Silent Sound

Member
Messages
5,111
Yeah, I wouldn't expect an amp made for electric guitar to sound good with vocals and acoustic guitars, nor an amp made for vocals and acoustic guitars to sound good for electric guitar. They have very different requirements and not much overlapping ground. I've seen it done, but was never impressed by it. The good news is for $800-1200 you could buy a small powered P.A. speaker (or acoustic guitar amp) and a regular electric guitar amp to cover all of your needs. You might even have money left over for a dolly or hand truck to haul around all of this stuff. Short of that, I might consider buying a P.A. and a modeling preamp for your electric guitar.
 

FoxV

Member
Messages
231
Hmmm...so my take away is that Quilter amps come close to doing this. Nothing else?
 

bgmacaw

Member
Messages
8,083
Peavey Bandit, preferably an older one.

There are several acoustic guitar amps that will do the PA thing well along with amplifying an electric going into a modeler.
 

kwicked

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
3,675
Get ready for 100 pages of every amp ever built.
Did you read his list of goals?? Nope. Lol
Anyway, OP, i would second what bgmacaw and silent sound said. Vocals are the tough part, so a modeled electric going into a portable PA or acoustic amp is going to sound way better than vocals through any true electric guitar amp-
 

synthetica

Member
Messages
319
Don't know about the vocals side but PM me for an amp I have for sale that may fit all of your other options.
 

jnovac1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,466
I'd love opinions and advice on which amps I should consider given these goals/consideration (in approximate order of importance):

  • Price range: $800 - $1200
  • 30 lbs or less (maybe 35 lbs, but I really want it easy to carry around...from home to work to rehearsals)
  • Good for vocals, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar (independently)
  • Could be used for Vocals + Accoustic/Electric at same time
  • For electric guitar, can get 90% toward a warm tube-sound
  • Will take pedals well
  • Could be used in small-bar gig (but will mainly be used in studio/practice room)
  • I don't need or want or care about effects. Have that already for Vocals and guitar.
  • Modest tone shaping is fine
If there are other helpful threads, please point me there. I've done quite a bit of searching on here, but I'm sure I've missed some gems.

Thanks!
vibrolux reverb
 

ksandvik

Member
Messages
6,331
Vocals? Skip most guitar amps/cabs that are tweaked for mid-range sound. Get a self-powered monitor, good one and a Fractal AX8 and a mixer between.
 
Last edited:

FoxV

Member
Messages
231
Thanks for all the helpful replies. Helped me to realize I need to split out my goals into A) get a great elec. guitar amp, and B) get something else for vocals and acoustic. I knew combining the two needs was a tall ask, but I wondered if anything out there might be able to do this. Sounds like a few things sort of can (e.g., Quilter, maybe a Fishman....eeks...actually, I would assume a Fishman would suck for elec. guitar), but nothing really does this superbly.
 

Torren61

Member
Messages
2,035
Did you read his list of goals?? Nope. Lol
Anyway, OP, i would second what bgmacaw and silent sound said. Vocals are the tough part, so a modeled electric going into a portable PA or acoustic amp is going to sound way better than vocals through any true electric guitar amp-
Oh, I read his list of goals. I've been here long enough to know that doesn't matter. He's gonna get every suggestion from some 1 watt kit amp to a Jimi Hendrix signature Marshall. I've read some of these kinda threads and just been like "Wow" when I read some of the suggestions. There's gonna be some gold in these here posts but he's really gonna have to look long and hard to know 'em when he sees 'em.

I'll repeat what I said earlier, sounds like OP needs a PA to go with his electric guitar amp.
 
Messages
6,175
It would have to be a tall order to do all the three, and that would still be a jack of all trades and a master of none.

Acoustic and vocals: granted. You'd get by with an acoustic amp or some kind of a PA. But with electrics - and should you ever want to get into harp - you'd typically want a completely different character of amp and other style of speakers that are middier and softer in the highs.

You could get by w. using amp emulating analogue pedals into the PA, but that would have a tone of re-amping about it that may not be to the OP:ers liking. Then wanting all three tasks of one unit, perhaps that is something you could still consider.
 

MickeyJi

Member
Messages
1,972
I used to have a Marshall AS 50 that did this quite well. It's basically an acoustic amp with a good mic input and a circuit that tweaks the speaker response for when you're playing electric.
 




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