5 Tips to Selecting a Tube Amp
A tube amp is basically an amplifier that is used to enhance the sound of an electric guitar. And just like its name suggests, the amp uses tubes instead of transistors. Tube amps are used by guitarists to practice at home and perform at events. There are actually many brands of tube amps in the market. Shopping for this kind of amp can be a daunting task for beginners. This article will elaborate on what to look for in a tube amp.
1. Set Your Budget
Before you shop for a tube amp, it’s recommended that you decide how much you are willing to spend. When you have a budget in mind, you will be able to select an amp that you can afford to buy. There has been misconception that expensive amps are more powerful than cheap amps. Nowadays you can get a top of the range tube amp for less money. This is because technological advancement has made it easier for manufacturers to include more features in compact amps. You therefore don’t have to break the bank to be able to an amp.
2. Consider the Wattage
When looking to buy a tube amp, you should opt for the one with the ideal wattage. This is because the output of an amp is determined by its watts. The more the wattage, the stronger the output signal will be. If you will be using your amp at home or in a studio, it’s important you select an amp that features low wattage. On the other hand, an amp that has high wattage is highly recommended for guitarists who perform in night clubs and arenas.
This is due to the fact that they are able to produce high volume. If you opt for an amp that has low wattage and use it in crowded places, your audience will not be able to hear the sound of the guitar. Besides that, buying an amp with high wattage for home use is meaningless. This is because you will have to reduce the volume to avoid irritating your neighbors.
3. Supported Accessories
An amp that is rich in features is much better than one that has just a few features. You should therefore settle for a tube amp that is compatible with USB ports and headphones. Besides that, you might opt for an amp that has several channels and a set of equalizer. Although an amp that has many features is tailored to your convenience, it might be hard to operate it. If you are buying an amp for the first time, you should opt for a model that’s easy to operate.
4. Read Online Reviews
By reading reviews that are available on the internet, you will know the pros and cons of every tube amp that is in the market. The good thing is that tube amp reviews are published on a daily basis by people who have already bought them. Amps that are top rated usually guarantee the best sound quality. Moreover, you should opt for amp that’s made by a reputable company because it’s more durable than emerging brands.
5. Put it to the Test
The easiest way of knowing whether a tube amp is ideal for you is to literally play it. In fact, you should not pay anything without testing the amp first. By doing this, you will be able to tell whether the tube amp will produce the magnitude of volume that you want. In fact, you should try several amps so that you can pick the one that matches with your audio needs. Besides that, you will be able to identify any flaws in the amp before you buy it.