Beginner Tube Amp Suggestions

northernguitar

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Well that's his decision to make, 6 months down the line.

Right now he wants a *eckin' valve amp. When I started playing, I wanted a *eckin' valve amp too because modellers didn't exist and SS amps were a bit crap. Eventually I bought a third or fourth-hand AC30 head and cab.

Now that was loud.
Or, ‘I love this, but I want more volume. Shoulda bought the 15 water!’
 

hepular

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I know this is maybe an old-fashioned suggestion, but OP could learn how to play first, on an acoustic, like many of us did.
Just discover the beauty of ( eventually) playing nice clear chords, runs, scales - whatever. Not have to worry about volume, or what kind of distortion or effects to use. Just good guitar playing.

OP likes blues? You can play great blues ( any level ) on an acoustic,
Just an idea
slightly contrarian: learn on electric. but unplugged.
 

LuckyPenny

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Nobody talked me into anything. From my very first post, I told everyone that I wanted a tube amp. I've been messing with the Spark for long enough to know that I want simple. I'm 38 years old and I live in the country so I'm not worried about volume or annoying the neighbors. I know what I want and what I don't want. Feel free to keep recommending modeling amps, but at this point it will only be good for laughs.

That AC4 and AC10 will make the list too, along with the Pro Jr. I will also look into the VHT6 that the other member has suggested. Thanks everyone!
 

Chiogtr4x

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slightly contrarian: learn on electric. but unplugged.

OP can do what he wants- be happy!

I just have a love for playing the acoustic, as that is how I learned, and have played & gigged 50/50 acoustic/electric since 1976.

( which also means by my association to playing acoustic, I don't mind the sound of an electric plugged into to any amp at low volume- squeaky Clean & clear is fine for me as well as overdriven)

As long as I have something in my lap I'm happy- but that's just me

- but I know the sounds I like are not for everyone- some folks don't care for clean electric guitar sounds.
 

Red Ryder

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Nobody talked me into anything. From my very first post, I told everyone that I wanted a tube amp. I've been messing with the Spark for long enough to know that I want simple. I'm 38 years old and I live in the country so I'm not worried about volume or annoying the neighbors. I know what I want and what I don't want. Feel free to keep recommending modeling amps, but at this point it will only be good for laughs.

That AC4 and AC10 will make the list too, along with the Pro Jr. I will also look into the VHT6 that the other member has suggested. Thanks
I offered
20220528_072241.jpg
another young man a good deal on one of these didn't hear back.
 

Red Ryder

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Nobody talked me into anything. From my very first post, I told everyone that I wanted a tube amp. I've been messing with the Spark for long enough to know that I want simple. I'm 38 years old and I live in the country so I'm not worried about volume or annoying the neighbors. I know what I want and what I don't want. Feel free to keep recommending modeling amps, but at this point it will only be good for laughs.

That AC4 and AC10 will make the list too, along with the Pro Jr. I will also look into the VHT6 that the other member has suggested. Thanks everyone!
I hope you've learned your lesson.
 

Tim S

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Nobody talked me into anything. From my very first post, I told everyone that I wanted a tube amp. I've been messing with the Spark for long enough to know that I want simple. I'm 38 years old and I live in the country so I'm not worried about volume or annoying the neighbors. I know what I want and what I don't want. Feel free to keep recommending modeling amps, but at this point it will only be good for laughs.

That AC4 and AC10 will make the list too, along with the Pro Jr. I will also look into the VHT6 that the other member has suggested. Thanks everyone!
Ok. So what attributes persuaded you that you are best served by a tube amp? There has to be something to make you this adamant. Knowing your reasons can help us give you a more meaningful response.

What kind of volume are you looking to get out if it? Just for home use? Or do plan to eventually use it with a drummer?

Do you have any size or weight limits in mind? Are you okay with a 60 lbs or 80 lbs amp? (Will you be climbing stairs with it?)

If you know you need a tube amp, do you what you need for speakers? Alnico or Ceramic? British or American voiced? Speaker size? Number of speakers?

Are you looking for a combo or are you open to a separate cabinet & amp head? (There are a LOT of micro heads out there)

Without knowing these things, everyone will just reply with their favorite tube amp under $600 (whether it meets your needs or not)

Edit: I missed this basic question — Are you looking for something new with a warranty or are you okay with used?

Other questions: Do you need an effects loop? (you mentioned using pedals). Do you need a line-out? Do you require tube rectification?
 
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northernguitar

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Ok. So what attributes persuaded you that you are best served by a tube amp? There has to be something to make you this adamant. Knowing your reasons can help us give you a more meaningful response.

What kind of volume are you looking to get out if it? Just for home use? Or do plan to eventually use it with a drummer?

Do you have any size or weight limits in mind? Are you okay with a 60 lbs or 80 lbs amp? (Will you be climbing stairs with it?)

If you know you need a tube amp, do you what you need for speakers? Alnico or Ceramic? British or American voiced? Speaker size? Number of speakers?

Are you looking for a combo or are you open to a separate cabinet & amp head? (There are a LOT of micro heads out there)

Without knowing these things, everyone will just reply with their favorite tube amp under $600 (whether it meets your needs or not)
Five pages in and this is your best, most useful post, though much has already been answered. Would make for a decent questionnaire.
 

hepular

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OP can do what he wants- be happy!

I just have a love for playing the acoustic, as that is how I learned, and have played & gigged 50/50 acoustic/electric since 1976.

( which also means by my association to playing acoustic, I don't mind the sound of an electric plugged into to any amp at low volume- squeaky Clean & clear is fine for me as well as overdriven)

As long as I have something in my lap I'm happy- but that's just me

- but I know the sounds I like are not for everyone- some folks don't care for clean electric guitar sounds.

when i started re-learning a couple years ago, guy in local shop said something that stuck with me: "You can tell you learned on acoustic cuz a how you play too hard." Sure enough, had to spend a fair amount of time re-learning how to not pull notes outta tune in chords.

but counter to playing unplugged: the amp is its own instrument & at some point an electric player's gotta learn how to play the guitar-amp interface.

but back to the OP: I'm a buy-it-once if possible guy. [& i'm a spend the $$ on the AMP guy: if the guitar will intonate and i can get the action where i want, i just don't care about the rest]. In my perfect world, my 1 amp would be a fender twin: hard to beat for blues and country. (as folks have said, volume knobs exist). BUT opportunity and $$$ meant that I wound up with an old SuperChamp.
 

Tim S

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It’s a shame the OP has no use for this. It’s a great small amp that sounds huge plugged into a 2x12 or 4x12 (it even has a headphone jack and is made in the USA)

 

northernguitar

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It’s a shame the OP has no use for this. It’s a great small amp that sounds huge plugged into a 2x12 or 4x12 (it even has a headphone jack and is made in the USA)

Not helpful. Opinionated and moot point.
 

Tim S

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Five pages in and this is your best, most useful post, though much has already been answered. Would make for a decent questionnaire.
Thanks! I’ll take appreciation anywhere I can find it.

AFAIK, the only details I know are “small” and “tube” for a beginner to learn on with 3 pedals. What else did I miss?

Not helpful. Opinionated and moot point.
Not helpful to the OP, but I’m guessing other beginners will stumble into this thread someday who don’t want a pony. It might be very helpful to them.

Opinionated? Aren’t recommendations opinions? Really…
There might be a few people at the monkey bars
 

M2roadwarrior

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Tube amps are awesome and powerful, all my friends that have the little modelers are blown away when they hear my 5w Marshall even when it’s set to .5w power with no pedals! Beware of the power of a 5 watter never mind the power of an even bigger model!
Sounds like most are suggesting the mono, this is likely a great choice as there are a lot of fart smellers around here. I have not tried the mono. I do own a 5w Marshall, an ac10 and a 15 blues jr. All of these are lovely to my ears! Good luck in your search!
 

Tim S

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He said he wants a tube amp.
6v6? 6L6? EL84? EL34? Triode or Pentode? SE or PP?
Tube or diode rectification?
Tube amp as in both preamp and power amp? Or is a hybrid a possibility? If so, which amp requires the tube: pre or power?

Since you tend to repeatedly speak for him, I figured you must know.
 

northernguitar

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6v6? 6L6? EL84? EL34? Triode or Pentode? SE or PP?
Tube or diode rectification?
Tube amp as in both preamp and power amp? Or is a hybrid a possibility? If so, which amp requires the tube: pre or power?

Since you tend to repeatedly speak for him, I figured you must know.

He said he wants a tube amp. He’s narrowed his preferences, even saying he’d like to try a few tube amps. Why not comment on his initial choices?

Dude is 38 and not strung out on the dole. Big boy, can try something and find joy, then change it up as he learns.

I’m just here, trying to help with suggesting amps, tube amps, in the tube amp forum. I’m not trying to change a man’s mind, based on what I think is right.
 
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PCollen

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+1 for a new Monoprice Stage Right 5 Watt 1x8" tube guitar combo for about $160. Straightforward easy setup with one volume knob and one tone knob, 8" Celestion and extension speaker out jack. If 5 watts is not enough, Monoprice also makes a 15 watt all tube amp 1x12" combo for about $280. I got the 5 watt version and it kicks @$$.

View attachment 987419 View attachment 987420

Or a used Fender Pro Junior $350-$520

Hard to beat this...and with a 6V6 and tone control vs. the typical EL84 found in 5 Watt s/e tube amps (like the Epiphone VJ and similar)
 




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