Guitar Amplifier Shopping Tips
Guitar amplifiers are a major part of your tone. Some amps can do many things well, while others excel at producing specific tonal qualities. When looking for a guitar amplifier, you'll have to choose between a Tube or Solid-State version, and if you want a combo, or separate head and speaker cabinet.
Tube established guitar amplifiers use old fashioned vacuum tubes to make their electricity and process the guitar's signal. They are extremely loud, and create a great deal of heat during operation. Normally, tube amps offer a warm tone that if pushed hard will make a natural, overdriven distortion that's extremely sought after by many guitarists. Tube amplifiers will need maintenance as the vacuum tubes require periodic replacement.
Solid-State guitar amplifiers rely on transistors and integrated circuits to amplify and process the guitar's signal. Even though they can not match the raw power and smooth, natural distortion of a tube amp, Solid-State amps are generally much more versatile. Modern electronics are often utilised to make a wider range of tones than found in many tube based guitar amplifiers. They also run cooler, and are relatively maintenance free.
Choosing from a combo or separates is often a personal choice. Combo guitar amps use a single cabinet to house the electronics and speakers. They take up less space, and are generally easier to transport. Separates give you greater flexibility with regard to speaker size and kind. As there's more space for elements, some assert that divides are designed to higher standards than combos, but this isn't always correct. One really major benefit of separates is the head could be isolated from vibrations created by the speakers, prolonging the life and reliability of the digital components.
Whichever kind of amp you choose, bear in mind your amp and guitar work as a team. Plugging an expensive, well voiced tool into a inexpensive amplifier won't enable the instrument to attain its full potential. A fantastic amplifier will last you for several years... so do not skimp!