WHEN YOU THINK “CHEAP”, THINK “BUDGET FRIENDLY” INSTEAD! THESE ARE OUR TOP 7 CHEAP AMPS THAT DON’T SUCK AND WON'T DESTROY YOUR TONE, PROVIDING YOU WITH MORE FEATURES, MORE SOUND AND MORE POWER FOR UNDER & AROUND £100!
Lately here at PMT, we’ve been discussing our favourite budget friendly instruments that still provide high quality sound and playability, whilst remaining entirely affordable. Today - it's all about cheap guitar amps that sound amazing! When it comes to guitar amplifiers, especially the ones that we love here at PMT, “cheap” doesn’t mean poor quality! Thanks to huge leaps in manufacturing processes, stringent quality control and the fact brands really care about the products they create, you can spend far less on an amplifier and musical instrument these days and still get a fantastic, highly playable and superb quality option for your needs. So, when you see “cheap” think “budget friendly” instead! Here’s our Top 7 Best Cheap Amps That Don’t Suck and are all under £100 (technically under £105)...
1. MARSHALL MS-2 MICRO AMP IN BLACK
There’s 2 very small and cheap amps that are widely used by guitarists and by guitar technicians across the globe and the Marshall MS-2 Micro Amp is one of them. The other is number 2 in our list, before you ask… This tiny 1-watt Marshall amplifier may fit in the palm of your hand, but it sure packs a punch and is a LOT louder than you’d expect. Styled just like the classic Marshall amplifier stacks now synonymous with rock n roll, this is one of the best cheap amps thanks to its convenient size, 9V battery powered operation for ultimate portability and the fact you can plug your guitar into it and rock out anywhere you like. Adjust the volume and tone and engage the gain when you want to bust out some distortion riffs or throw your headphones in via the 6.3mm Jack headphone output which also doubles up as a preamp out. Enjoy silent practice anywhere or hook it up to your audio interface for studio recordings. A powerful little amplifier relied upon by guitarists when inspiration strikes. At under £30 it’s actually an essential purchase for musicians and one of the best music gifts ever – it’s certainly cheap, but it certainly doesn’t suck! Available in a range of different colours and as a double stack for extra volume.
2. ORANGE CRUSH MINI 3 WATT GUITAR COMBO AMP
Remember when I said that there were 2 amps widely used as practice amps and tools for guitar techs? Well, the Orange Crush Mini 3 Watt Guitar Combo Amp is the other one. Warm ups before gigs, during set ups and maintenance work, this amplifier is relied upon to provide accurate sound and incredible tone anywhere, anytime. This is one of the best cheap amps available thanks to the fact it’s made by one of the most respected amplifier manufacturers in the world, powered via 9V battery and busts out some seriously amazing clean and dirty sounds. You also have a headphones jack, a built-in tuner and 3 watts of power coming out of a 4”speaker – it’s that classic Orange amp sound just scaled down. Perfect as a gift for musicians, a great cheap practice amp for around the home and a wonderful hotel/studio amp for when inspiration strikes thanks to the 8 Ohm extension jack.
3. VOX PATHFINDER 10W COMBO AMPLIFIER
The VOX Pathfinder 10 is one of the best cheap amps on the market today, but don’t be fooled by its budget friendly price tag – this is a powerhouse of tone. Its pricing and ease of use makes it ideal for beginner guitarists but its signature, high quality VOX sound is why it’s also relied upon by professional guitarists and studio engineers everywhere. You have a 2 band EQ as well as independent gain and master controls as well as a headphone/line out jack for either silent practice or recording directly to your audio interface. There’s 10 watts of solid state power flying out of the 6.5" speaker so you’re covered for smaller gigs and practice sessions whilst the classic VOX grille cloth and chicken head knobs provide that unmistakeable VOX look. A fantastic amplifier that will provide you with lush tone and typical VOX reliability – you can’t argue with that for under £70.
4. BLACKSTAR ID:CORE 10 V2 BLONDE SUPERWIDE STEREO DIGITAL COMBO
The Blackstar ID:Core 10 V2 Guitar Combo Amplifier Cream is one of the best cheap amps you could hope to play, offering up a world of different sounds, tones and effects in a portable, budget friendly and easy to use amplifier. Straight out of the box, you have 6 x enhanced amp voices to choose from ranging from crystal cleans to bone crushing gains to get to grips with as well as 12 x super wide stereo FX effects that you can use to create your ideal sound. The 10 watts pumping out of the 2 x 3” woofers make it a great desktop amp and something to jam along with friends. The amp is ideal for beginners still getting to grips with their sound as you can choose from Clean Warm, Clean Bright, Crunch, Super Crunch, OD 1 and OD and the budget friendly price tag makes it all the more appealing. This software is a free download that functions as an editor/librarian for your Spider tones. In addition, you also get Presonus Studio One DAW bundled with the amp so you can record loops, craft entire songs, change and store patches using the Blackstar INSIDER software. This is not only one of the best cheap amplifiers, it’s also one of the best amps for beginner guitarists who want to get into songwriting too!
5. ORANGE CRUSH 12 SOLID STATE 12W 1X6 COMBO
When it comes to amplifiers that won’t break the bank, but sound loud enough to break your windows, Orange Amplification know exactly what they’re doing and they do it well! The Orange Crush 12 Solid State 12W 1X6 Combo is one of the best cheap amps in the music scene and one that can easily be used on stage and in the studio due to its legendary tone and reliability. This Orange Crush 12 Solid State 12 watt amplifier features a 6” Voice Of The World speaker custom designed by the team at Orange amplification to deliver punchy and articulate sound. Although fairly small in size, this packs a serious punch thanks to the overdrive control which can produce that classic orange crunch to smooth and creamy British distortion. The Orange Crush 12 is definitely a great small gig and rehearsal amp, but it also makes a fantastic amplifier for practice at home thanks to the headphone/line output which features the Orange CabSim technology. This allows you to plug your headphones in and enjoy a faithfully emulated sound of a mic’d Orange 4×12" cabinet directly to your headphones – ideal for silent practice. This can also be used in conjunction with your audio interface for direct recording and the capturing of authentic Orange tones without dragging a massive cabinet into a room (or destroying your windows!).
6. BOSS KATANA-MINI GUITAR AMPLIFIER
Whilst we’re on the subject of practice amps, we have to talk about the amazing BOSS Katana-Mini Guitar Amplifier. This little powerhouse of tone makes our best cheap amps that don’t suck list due to its immense sound, portability and inspiring tones within. Coming straight out of the acclaimed BOSS Katana series, the Katana-Mini uses the authentic multi-stage analog gain circuitry which allows you to select from three classic sound settings - Brown, Crunch, and Clean and enjoy a selection of fantastic sonic options. On top of that you have a classic 3 band EQ to dial in your perfect sound as well as an onboard tape-style delay. You can also run the BOSS Katana-Mini via 6 x AA-size batteries or optional AC adapter (sold separately), jam along to your favourite tracks via the Aux input and enjoy silent practice thanks to the headphones/recording output with cabinet voicing.
7. EASTCOAST G10R GUITAR COMBO AMPLIFIER WITH REVERB
So, we're at £59 with the Eastcoast G10R Guitar Combo Amplifier with Reverb. The fact you get a Boost channel, reverb effect and independent volume, gain and tone controls all for under £60 definitely makes it one of the best cheap amps money can buy. With 10 watts of power at your disposal pumping out through a custom 6.5" speaker, it won’t blow the windows out, but it will certainly stand up on its own when used in a rehearsal or practice situation. The Eastcoast G10R Guitar Combo also features an integrated headphones input which allows you to practice in silence. The easy to use control panel allows you to see and change your sounds and connectivity for an extension cab means you can expand your sound when you want to start gigging with the amp. A fantastic amplifier for beginners and players of all levels.
WANT MORE? CHECK OUT DAGAN'S FAVOURITE CHEAP AMPS VIDEO
View a complete range of guitar amplifiers over at PMT Online today or call in to your local PMT store to speak to one of our experts and try out a selection of amplifiers for yourself!