Guitar Amps Under 250 Buyers Guide
What to look for in a guitar amp under 250
When you’re browsing affordable amps, there are some things to consider. The manufacturers need to make money somewhere along the line, and amplification components are generally not the cheapest products on the market. To determine which is the best amp for you, keep in mind these factors while you’re doing your online shopping.
The speaker size is a straightforward way of telling how much low end or high end the amp is going to be able to handle. The larger the speaker, generally, the more well rounded the tone will be because larger speakers can handle more bass. Also, you want the amp to be able to display high frequencies for a great sound.
If the amp has a built-in Whizzer cone, which is designed to offer detailed treble tones, then you will have a beautiful bright and shimmering high end to work with. That isn’t to say that a small speaker will sound bad, but if you have an 8″ speaker compared to a 6″ speaker, then you may benefit from having a little more low end to enjoy.
The importance of effects on your amp is totally dependant on what type of player you are. Many players are happy to have a clean channel and an overdrive channel when playing rock or metal music. However, having other effects at your disposal can spice things up.
The most common effects on an amp are reverb, delay, chorus, and sometimes a flanger. There are, however, many amps out there, which are modeling amps after many of the best tones ever created by rock stars. Modeling amps give you that extra level of versatility and allow you to play along with any style of music.
If you’re in the market for an amp under $250, then effects may not be the most important thing for you. Especially if you’re mostly using your amp for practice purposes, you generally don’t want to have too many effects muddling up your tone. You want to be able to hear it clearly and concisely. Think of effects as a fun add on, but not necessary to the effectiveness of your amp.
The most affordable amps won’t have the power necessary to perform on a big stage with a full band. That is unless you’re looking at a tube amp. Tube amps have been designed for such purposes. Any amp in the 10-15-watt range will be suitable for use around the house, but shouldn’t be expected to handle much more power than that.
This is a good thing, however, if you want an amp with low enough volume so that you can enjoy the natural tone without scaring your pets. If you want more versatility in what you’re able to do and want the option to keep up with a drummer, then try to go with an amp that is at least 25 watts or more, if possible. That should give you the headroom you need to keep your tone above the drowning point.
Most of the best amps under $250 on today’s market should have a jack for you to plug in an MP3 player so you can play along with your favorite music. Some will have an RCA input, and a headphone jack too. In any case, having this nifty little add on can allow you to enjoy the power of plugging in your favorite playlist and having a personalized jam session at home.
For most purposes, your amp should have more than one channel. All amps will have a clean base channel, and the best ones will also have an overdrive channel. The quality of the overdrive is vital because sometimes, overdrive channels don’t match up to what they should.
If you don’t want to have to spend another couple hundred bucks on pedals, then having a sufficient overdrive channel is essential. This will allow you to play leads that sound good without needing to plug in any extra effects.
The purposes of amps under $250 are pretty obvious. They give you a speaker to play your favorite music without spending too much money. Hopefully, this outline will provide you with the information you need to be able to work on those skills and polish your sound.
If ever possible, it’s best to have a tube amp instead of a transistor. Tube amps give off a lot more power and generally employ a very authentic and rich tone. So if you’re looking for great sound, go for tube amps. It could save you money and headaches dealing with a simplified version of an amp, and you’ll benefit from a better overall sound.
Did you know?
The first guitar amplifiers used by touring musicians were created in the 1920s. They were straightforward, having only a volume knob and an input jack. They had no effects or overdrive built-in; they just focussed on sound. But they were the first AC powered plug-in amps that allowed musicians to be heard in larger rooms.