Everybody is familiar with a guitar amplifier and its function. It basically gives strength to electrical signals from a guitar that are otherwise weak. It enables the acoustic, electric or bass guitar to produce sound through more than one loudspeaker. Guitar amplifiers are mainly in the form of standalone wood or a metal cabinet.
These guitar amplifiers or amps are available in a number of types. The type that we will be reviewing today is the solid-state guitar amplifier. These amplifiers are the ones that are not very expensive and are reliable and lighter in weight than other types of amps. They are also not as fragile and they have semiconductor or transistor circuits.
These solid state amps are known to produce a cleaner sound, which is usually liked by jazz guitarists. Solid state amps are further available in various features and differences. They differ in size, price, functionality, sound quality that is produced, or the output power needed. They can be used for practice sessions as well as for studio recordings.
Since there are so many variations available in solid state amps, we decided to help you out by reviewing the 9 Best Solid State Amps of 2020. Also, check out the Buyer’s Guide at the end of this article so that you do not miss any important feature that your solid state amp must have!
Phil Jones Bass Roadcase Bass Combo Amp
This amp is a combo one, as its name suggests, and it gives the user the benefit of a combo amp with the help of the output power from the separate components. It is an easy to transport amp, since it is light weight and has ergonomic handles.
It provides two channels. One of the channels is meant for acoustic bass and the other one for electric. It has a 750W RMS power amp that makes it suitable for use on any stage. It comes with 12 Neo Power speakers that have the ability to go with any style of playing, since it has a much larger cabinet to provide the required weight.
It has very small foot prints that provide the user with enough space on the stage, without having the need to sacrifice the tone or the volume. It is one the highest rated amps on Amazon and has mane happy customers.
- Combo amp.
- Output power from separate components.
- Two channels available.
- One channel for acoustic bass.
- One channel for electric.
- Easy to transport.
- Ergonomically designed.
- 750W RMS power amp.
- Goes with any style of playing.
- Tiny footprints.
- Suitable for use on any stage
- Comes with 12 Neo Power Speakers.
Overall Ratings– 5.0/5 stars.
Ampeg SVT-4PRO Series Tube/Solid-State Hybrid Bass Amplifier Head
Ampeg is the most known name in the market for bass and guitar amps and they have been in this market since the 1960s. Even today, it has maintained its superior performance and its customer ratings through its quality and innovation.
This amp provides rich harmonics and serves you with the reliability that a solid-state amp is supposed to offer. It also allows the user to shape the tones, like by using graphic, compression, 5-way mid control, etc. It basically gives you a vast list of options for your tones. Not just tonal control, it also features inputs and outputs that can help you in any situation.
You can connect this amp to any mixer or recording setup through its outs that are extremely versatile. It also allows the user to run it on a bi-amp mode so that separate outs can be used. It has a rackmount design, and is clearly the favorite of many professionals.
- Renowned brand name.
- Rich harmonics.
- Extremely reliable.
- Shaping of tones is allowed.
- Versatile inputs and outputs.
- Rackmount design.
- Bi-amp mode.
- Clean power.
- Recommended by many professionals.
Overall Ratings- 4.0/5 stars.
Marshall Amplifier Speaker (MG15GR)
This solid-state design amp provides the user with clean channels. It also allows shaping the channels with the help of a 3-band EQ.
It also features a digital spring reverb effect. The best feature carried by this amp is that the user can store and recall the settings for each channel. It gives a loud sound that is both sharp and clear. It is able to imitate the tube amp’s tone and response, all thanks to its solid-state design which is revolutionary.
It is a versatile product, since it allows a number of line inputs and line outputs. You can connect it to your music player, headphones, etc.
- 2 channels
- 1×8” Guitar Combo Amp.
- 3 band EQ.
- Digital spring reverb.
- Settings for each channel can be stored and recalled.
- Provides clear and loud sound.
- Follows tube amp’s tone.
- Speaker-emulated line/headphone outs.
- 15 watt.
- Line in.
Overall Ratings– 4.1/5 stars.
Peavey Rage 258 Guitar Combo Amp
The factor that makes this product liked by so many people is its design of the power amp. It is able to meet any amount of drive, be it thin, crystal clear or thick and smooth.
This power amp follows or emulates the tube amp exactly. It responds to the preamp in a way that produces natural compression, which is made to increase as the amp gets louder. This power amp features wide ranged dynamics and also provides natural grit. Basically it functions just like a tube amp.
It gives two channels that can be switched between; those are clean and produce a clear sound. It features 3-band EQ and ¼ Aux input. It is an 8 inch super-duty speaker.
- Innovative design of power amp.
- Preamp tailors gain to meet any amount of drive.
- Emulates tube amp.
- Gives natural compression.
- Wide ranged dynamics.
- Natural grit.
- 2 channels.
- Provide a clear and sharp sound.
- 3-band EQ.
- ¼ Aux input.
- 8-inch super-duty speaker.
Overall Ratings– 4.0/5 stars.
Orange Crush 20-Twin Channel 20W Guitar Amplifier
This is an amp that produces gut-punching tones and is also value priced. It fulfills your wish of having an overdrive that is highly-responsive and also gives an amazing level of saturation, which is detailed.
It comes with 2 channels that are footswitchable. It produces wide ranges of tones just like old school guitar amplifiers. It features the innovative CabSim circuit which results in this amp producing sounds just like an Orange 4×12” cabinet does. It comes in a compact package which makes it easy to store and to carry about.
It gives rich harmonics and has a 4 stage preamp design, which offers a huge palette of distorted or overdriven sounds. It features 3-band EQ which gives the guitarist control over the sound and the tones.
- Gut-punching sounds.
- Highly responsive overdrive.
- Detailed saturation.
- 2 footswitchable channels.
- Wide range of tones.
- CabSim circuit.
- Emulates Orange 4×12”.
- Compact package for easy storage.
- Rich harmonics.
- 4 stage preamp design.
- 3-band EQ.
- 20 watts.
- Analogue signal path.
Overall Ratings– 4.6/5 stars.
Kithouse B9 Electric Guitar Amp
This amplifier is known be to become the powerhouse of your audio setup, once you purchase it. It produces a crisp and clear sound and is one of the most reliable amps available.
It is an all-in-one system, which includes speakers, power amp and preamp. This makes it easier for you to carry just one system any where you go, and also allows you to wrap up quickly. This amp is most suited for small areas. You don’t need to buy a large amp if you mostly practice in a much smaller venue.
It has wired/wireless microphone input and has a feature of adjustable volume and adjustable echo as well. It comes with rechargeable lithium batteries and has a battery life of 10 hours when fully charged.
- Produces crisp sound.
- Reliable amp.
- All-in-one device.
- Easy to carry.
- Suitable for smaller venues.
- Wired/wireless microphone amp.
- Rechargeable lithium batteries.
- Batteries included.
- Battery life 10 hours.
- AUX input.
- Headset output.
Overall Ratings– 4.2/5 stars.
Wangs Amps 10W Guitar Amplifier All-Tube Combo
This guitar amp is a 10 Watt all-in-one device that has a special power switching mode which allows the tone to remain strengthened even when power is reduced. Even when it is switched to 5 watt practice, the tone can be allowed to remain 10 watt.
It offers three channels that have balanced adjustments, so that you can easily attain the tone you desire. It comes in a series loop design, to fulfill the demands of the users. The material used in the cabinet is particle board, which makes it an overall durable and long-lasting product. It gives a clean and sharp volume that can be easily adjusted.
The channels can be switched manually or with the help of a foot switch. Although, the foot switch is not provided in the package. It has a leather strap and has a vintage look, which makes it a more demanded product.
- 10 watt.
- All-in-one system.
- 3 channels.
- Desired tone can be attained easily.
- High quality particleboard is used in constructing the cabinet.
- Durable product.
- Produces a sharp sound.
- Adjustable volume.
- Manual switch or footswitch for channels.
- Vintage look.
- Power switch: 1W, 5W, 8W.
Overall Ratings– 4.2/5 stars.
Laney Amps CUB ALL TUBE Series 10 Watt Guitar Combo Amplifier
This guitar amp comes with a class A/B output, which gives the amp its desired mid-range, allowing the natural frequencies to sit. It gives a natural and responsive mid range.
The brand believes that “Small is Beautiful”. It delivers pure and vintage tones in small format, working on low watt units, with no unnecessarily complex layouts or settings. It is a simple to use amp and provides a single channel, having all the required controls, like volume control, tone control, gain control, etc. It also comes with the amazing feature of being able to be attached to a larger cabinet, with the help of its extension out socket.
Its unique and exclusive design makes it perfect for pairing your loudspeaker to your amp.
- A/B output.
- Gives desired mid-range.
- Produces tones in small format.
- Single channel.
- Volume and tone control.
- Gain control.
- Extension out socket.
- Custom designed speaker.
- 10 watts.
- Hi and lo input.
Overall Ratings– 4.4/5 stars.
BOSS KATANA-MINI Compact 7 Watt Guitar Amplifier
These amps are recommended and used by many guitarists around the world. They are known for their amazing feel and their sound, and are also of great value.
It runs on batteries and can easily be carried around and offers various on-board effects. The sound quality offered by this amplifier is claimed to be better than that produced by other amps. It has a multi-stage analog gain circuit, which makes it possible loud and expressive sounds. It features an analog EQ and also has an on-board tape-style delay.
It has an extremely compact design which makes it suitable for transportation and easy storage.
- Excellent feel and sound.
- Battery operated.
- Highly portable.
- Rich sound is produced.
- Produced sound exceeds the quality produced by other amps.
- Multi-stage analog gain circuit.
- 3 band analog tone stack.
- 3 amp types- church, brown, clean.
- Tape-style delay.
- Gives a warm ambience.
- Battery type- alkaline.
Overall Ratings- 4.5/5 stars.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do tube amps sound better than solid state?
Tube amps are definitely louder than solid state amps. Which means, say, an “x” watt tube amp would produce a much louder sound than a solid state amp of “x” watt.
How do solid state amps work?
The working of solid state amps are quite simple. They simply convert an electrical signal into an audio wave. They use transistor circuits to perform this conversion.
Do all solid state amps sound the same?
No, all solid state amps do not sound the same. It depends on the brands, the quality of the circuits, or the age of the solid state amp also effects its sound production.
How long do solid state amps last?
If treated properly and handled with care, good quality solid state amps would easily last up to 50 years. They may or may not need repairs every 15 years or so.
When did solid state amps come out?
Solid state amps appeared in the 1970s and they have been accepted well and have been used widely since then.
Though every individual has their own preferred choice of solid state amps, the newest and the latest additions or features are something that cannot be missed by any guitarist.
For example, digital solid state amps are becoming the talk of the music town and are indeed quite reliable. They can be connected to androids which makes the lives of guitarists so much more convenient!
The kind of solid state amp that you need also depends on the kind of music you play and the purpose for which you are buying. Whether you play at small gatherings, or large areas, or need an amp for recording purposes. The kind of solid state amp you select would vary with varying purposes.
Of course, whichever type of solid state amp you select, it should be distortion free. The speaker size and the power are something to look out for too.
The construction of the cabinet of your solid state amp is crucial as well. Usually, it is made of wood, but the thickness of the wood determines a lot. Thin cut wood cabinets would result in more vibrations. The ideal thickness of the wood is 1/2″, which would give the perfect sharp and strong sound you desire.
Also, always go for closed back solid state amps, because they produce a better sound than the open ones.
So,buying the perfect solid state amp is not as difficult as you were thinking before reading this article, right! We sure have changed your minds!
Select a product from the list provided by us, check out its features and place that long awaited order! Also, take a quick glance through the buyer’s guide, so that you don’t miss out on anything.
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Don’t forget to check out our article on the 7 Best Wireless Guitar Systems of 2020.