How to Choose a Guitar Amplifier With The Right Tone

October 7th, 2021

Writing by Winbridge Team

Summary

Choosing the perfect guitar amplifier that suits your needs, personal preferences, and tone can be tiring. When choosing a guitar amp, many factors come into play, and each of them should be considered carefully. Most people would tell you to go with an amp that matches your guitar. Playing some classical electric guitar could mean going for a tube amplifier because it may sound better than a solid-state amp. However, what you need might be something that matches the kind of music you play.
Acquiring that perfect guitar amp that would serve you is making sure whichever amp you pick meets your requirements. It is where custom made guitar amplifiers come in. With custom made guitar amplifiers, getting your perfect guitar amp is simply bundling together your desired features to create the one you like. Custom made guitar amps would be your best route if you genuinely want a guitar amp that does what you want how you want it. Your amp can be made to produce your kind of music, on your type of guitar, and other special effects and preferences of yours.
Despite this, you can’t set all out to make custom made guitar amplifiers of your choice, especially with no professional experience. WinBRIDGE does the work for you. If you ever need custom made guitar amplifiers or any amplifier, WinBRIDGE will provide a product you love.
Now, before placing the order for your custom made guitar amplifier, read this foolproof guide that would take you from being an amateur to becoming an expert in the world of guitar amplifiers. This way, you will know what you want for your custom made guitar amplifier.

What are Guitar Amplifiers?

If you are a newbie in the world of guitars, you must have been wondering what a guitar amplifier is and what exactly it does.
A Guitar Amplifier is simply an electronic system that picks the weak signals of your guitar and makes them strong enough to come out as the sound you hear through your speakers. Most times, the speakers through which you hear your sounds are made together with an amplifier. Nevertheless, it is not uncommon to find amplifiers that require connection to external speakers.
It is also possible for an amplifier to make changes to the tone of your guitar. There are several knobs and controls which lets you increase or decrease specific frequencies. The knobs act as equalizer controls available in most home sound systems. It can also add special effects to your sound, like reverb and other products built into your custom made guitar amplifiers.
There are three main types of guitar amplifiers. These are tube, solid-state, and hybrid. The difference between these types and the configuration of speakers that come with them are important factors to consider before choosing a suitable guilter amp.
Tube amps were the original amplifiers made for guitars. Although the guitar amplifier technology has improved past the use of tubes, most people still prefer this as they claim it sounds warmer and more natural. The primary material in solid-state amps is transistors, making them more reliable, cheaper, and lighter than the earlier tube amp. Fewer people use solid-state amps, and they claim it has a cleaner sound. A hybrid amplifier combines both vacuum tubes and transistors to create a new type of amp. Getting familiar with the different types of amplifiers will help you choose custom-made guitar amplifiers specifications that are right for you.

Types of Amps for Beginners

Tube apps have a rich, thick sound and harmonic distortion. They are the amps often used on stages. Solid-state amps, on the other hand, have a tight bass that’s endearing to metal guitarists. Solid-state are also the beginners’ choice because they are more reliable and require less maintenance. Beginners looking to buy their first guitar find the solid-state amps a much better option.

What About Hybrid Guitar Amps?

Hybrid amps are like having the best of both worlds. They offer the best parts of both tube and solid-state amps, making them quite an excellent experience. Modern practice amps are even a bit more specific in how they combine features of the two. You can now find practice amps with a tube preamp section and a solid-state power amp section. This ensures a beginner’s rich practice experience even on custom-made guitar amplifiers built for you.

How to Choose The Best Hybrid Amp

It can be tempting to go for the hybrid amp because it offers tube and solid-state amps features. So, how do you choose correctly? By searching for an amp that has 12AX7. These tubes work on the sound and leave room for a reliable solid-state feature for powering the amp.

Other Types of Guitar Amplifiers

Aside from the primary types of guitar amps, there are other guiltar amps, including the acoustic guitar amps, guitar amp simulations, and modelling guitar amps. The primary thing about them is that they are designed for specific uses. Any musician can still choose them, but it is good to keep their intended use in mind when shopping for custom made guitar amplifiers. Let’s see if you can explore these other options.

Acoustic Guitar Amps

These amps are made for acoustic guitars and are suitable for live performances on stages. They are not your regular amps for making music around your house. With these amps, you can use effects with your acoustic guitar just like you would do with your electric guitar. The amps also allow you to produce sounds with your acoustic guitar that are usually done only with an electric guitar.

Guitar Amp Simulators

The Guitar amp simulator is built for an electric guitar. It is a software that allows you to practice using headphones or computer monitor speakers. They are suitable for use at home as you can block out the sounds. Some musicians choose to use this simulator software in their performances instead of amps.

Modelling Guitar Amps

Beginners love using this amp for practice at home. They are popular because they have effects from many different amps. Modelling guitar amps provide hundreds of times on a single amp. If you are experimental and love to try other things, modelling guitar amps have enabled you to access many incredible tones at once. If you want to buy this amp, you must ensure that it supports different musical styles and has various effects for the best experience.

Common Guitar Amp Specifications

Beginners usually go for what is known as a combo amp. Combo amps combine the power amplifiers, speakers and preamplifier. The preamplifier’s job is to determine the guitar’s tone, while the power amp is what gets the sound to the speakers. You will also need a separate head that comes with a different speaker cabinet. Combo apps are small and portable, which makes them an easy choice. They come with headphone jacks, input jacks, and other appealing features.

How to Choose a Guitar Amp That’s Right for You

A lot of factors go into choosing a guitar amplifier that works for you. You can be tempted to choose an amplifier that matches the audio of your favourite guitarist, or you may consider only the tone of the amp. Choosing your custom made guitar amplifiers in this way is unlikely to meet your needs as different types of guitar amplifiers work for various purposes. Someone who plays at home would require a different tone from someone who goes from place to place. The features of the amplifier that every musician requires will be different. Consider someone playing for a large audience. Will they use the same amplifier as you if you only want to play your guitar in your apartment? Chances are they wouldn’t. They are likely to need different audio specifications from you. No matter how tempted you are to ramp up the volume, your space would get uncomfortable using an amplifier that’s too loud for. This makes custom made guitar amplifiers exciting. It would help if you choose an amplifier that works for you and that suits your tastes, your needs, and your circumstances. If you are playing indoors, you need a lot less volume than someone using the amp with a team or with large audiences. It is essential to decide what you will be using your amplifier for and where.

Choosing your Amplifier by Specifications

When choosing your custom-made guitar amplifiers, another thing to look at is the specifications that suit your needs and preferences. You should check the amplifiers with features that work for you. Here are some things to consider.

Size and Portability
Depending on where you would be using your guitar amplifier, ensuring that you are going for the appropriate size is essential to enjoying the amplifier in the long run. Guitar amplifiers range from tiny microamps to giant rigs and from single speaker cabinets to multiple cabinets. Even when you are going for custom made guitar amplifiers, you would want to consider the best size for you. If you are starting and need to practise, a small amp would be suitable for you. If you would be travelling a lot too, a small amp may be all you need because of its portability.

Tone Effects
Usually, you want to get a guitar amplifier because of its enhancements for your guitar tone. This means that you would look out for various tones and effects and which ones you love best. But it is not that simple. The kind of music you want to play largely determines what type of amp you will buy. You need to understand guitar amp tones and effects, and that’s what we will help you do in this section.

1. EQ Controls
Guitar amplifiers have equalizers built into them. These are controls for tone, and they are labelled treble, mid, and bass. The equalizer will help you adjust your amplifier’s frequencies to get your desired style at all times.

2. Reverb
This is an effect that sounds like a loud echo in an empty room. It is usually found in practice amps and may not be available on all amps.

3. Distortion
The sound coming from your amplifier may contain some distortion. Many guitar amplifiers will have a knob for controlling this so that your tone sounds more pleasant and well suited for the type of music you are making.

4. Digital Effects
When you are starting, you can get carried away by the many effects on your guitar amplifier, mainly as they help you improve your tone. On the other hand, their sheer number can be overwhelming. But not to worry, you can choose from them and even experiment to see which ones work for you. You can include the effects you love most in your custom made guitar amplifiers. The good thing about starting with an amp that has many effects built-in is that you can learn which exact ones you like so that when you are obtaining a much bigger amp, you can choose the specific effects that work for you.

5. Multiple Channels
Your amplifier can come with different channels that produce different sounds so that you can switch between them to enhance the tone you are creating. They also come with a footswitch that makes it easy for you to toggle back and forth between the channels. Some amps come with only a single channel. You can also find single channel amps that have a footswitch for turning effects on and off.

Quality

You would want to consider the quality of the guitar amp before making a decision. It can be fun to play with all the features of an amp, like the tone effects, multiple channels, and footswitch, but you do not want to forget to ensure that you are selecting a quality amp. It would be best to choose a well built that produces a great sound like our guitar amplifiers at WinBridge. You also want to look at the durability of your amp. Our guitar amps at WinBridge are made with materials that make them last long and retain strength and quality. If you want custom made guitar amplifiers, you will find the best quality for your needs at WinBridge.

Flexibility
You should consider if you are planning to stick with a particular style of music or would like to try several. If you are getting a practice amp, you want one that allows you to explore several musical styles. If you are a more experienced player, you may want to go for custom made guitar amplifiers specific to your tone.

Tips for Improving the Tone of your Amp

Now that you have an idea for selecting the amp of your choice, it is crucial to know how to improve the tone of your amp. Many things can affect the amp you choose, eventually causing you not to get the tone quality. These tips can help you get on top of that.

What’s your Musical Style?

Your amp should suit your needs, like where you will be playing it and the musical styles you are looking to play. Make sure that the audio of the amp you choose can work well with the amp you choose. The number of effects your amp has may not be relevant where they are a terrible fit for your musical styles. So, be sure what kind of music you will be playing before making an amp selection. Will you be playing rocks or blues or both? Perhaps, a solid-state amp would be better for you, or it’s a hybrid amp that would serve you correctly. It all depends on the music you will be playing and where.

Outdoor Performances

If you will be playing your music outdoors, the wind will significantly affect what you produce. In such a situation, you will need an amp with enough power to correct this. An amp with high wattage would be the appropriate one for such circumstances. With some planning, a good amp choice, and other equipment, you can improve the tone of your music at outdoor performances.

Choose a Good Speaker and Cabinet

You should also pay attention to the speaker and its cabinet as they can influence the tone and volume of sound from your custom-made guitar amplifiers. If you want more volume from your amp, you can easily achieve this by choosing a speaker with higher efficiency. A good speaker will also reduce your amp’s work to produce a good tone. A speaker with more decibels will provide more volume to your tone. If your amp has low wattage, the speaker will be your only hope not to drown out by the other types of equipment in a musical setup and to have your volume up.

Think of yourself as part of a Larger Band

Even if you are playing alone or practising, realize that the guitarist is part of a larger band. Choose an amp that would sound good as part of a band and not merely alone. Remember that depending on how efficient your amp is, the drums alone can drown it out. Take this into consideration to decide the speaker efficiency and amp wattage, among other features, when making your selection or order custom made guitar amplifiers.

Guitar amplifiers come in all shapes and sizes and with many different effects. They even have other uses. Identifying what features work for you and combining these into custom made guitar amplifiers can be a great experience and meet your specific needs. At WinBridge, we can take your specifications and create a guitar amplifier that’s specifically for you.

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