Monday, August 16, 2010

The Right Amp

You finally got your electric guitar and thinking of buying a guitar amplifier. Selecting an amplifier is a little bit confusing. Some base it on the looks, from its price and others consider where they'll use it. 

Each guitar amplifier has its own voice, its own behavior and for some, even the looks matter.  But for me, the right amp means that can respond best to my playing style with the least processing (i.e. no compression or overdrive/effect pedals) and at the same time can get the sound that I want.  And it should also work well in a given musical situation.

Before getting an amplifier, here are some checklists that you can consider.
  1. Where will you use it? (I.e. Room, Garage, Church, Road shows). If you just want to use it at home for practice you can consider getting 15 to 30 watts of power which has just the right sound amount for your room. Of course if you use it for road shows you also might need to consider of getting a bigger amplifier which has more than 100 watts of power.
  1. Sound – The most important thing to consider in getting your amp is its sound. Even if you got the most expensive and most good looking amp but if its sound is cheap. It will make you a bad player.  So expect people one by one clearing your gig.
  1. Durability – Some of the guitar amps have what protective cloth for the speakers which can protect the speakers. There are also amps that have kick grill instead of cloth to protect the speakers. 
  1. Price – if you’re considering in buying your first amplifier, price will be one of your primary concerns. Guitar amplifiers prices differ from their brands, wattage and materials used (i.e. tubes, wood etc.)
Before buying an amp, make sure try as many amps as you can that attracts you. It would be great if you try your own electric guitar on some stores. Play them from minimal volume to the loudest volume with or without the Overdrive or Effect pedals.