7 Best Mini Amps You Can Take Anywhere
These mini amplifiers are perfect for those with limited space
As all guitarists and bass players will understand, there’s nothing quite like plugging in to the loudest amp you can find and letting your guitar wail. However, your neighbours may disagree, especially if you decide to start busting out some serious riffage late at night. So what do you do when you need to be able to practice anywhere and at anytime without those pesky noise constraints dictating how loud you can go? Well, you turn to a glorious invention called the mini amplifier, say what?!
Every guitarist needs a mini amp in their rig. There, I’ve said it. They’re inexpensive, give you an accurate representation of what you’re playing and best of all, you can play them through headphones! Here are our favourite mini amps;
- Vox amPlug Series 2 AC30
- Marshall MS-2 Microamp Electric Guitar Amplifier
- Orange Micro Crush Pix Guitar Amplifier
- Blackstar Fly 3 Amplifier
- Orange Micro Terror Amp
- Yamaha THR5 Amplifier
- Fender Bassbreaker 007 Amp Head
Teeny Tiny Mini Amps
Simply plug it in and connect your headphones for silent playing and enjoy the host of onboard effects such as tremolo, reverb, and delay whilst you dial in your own gain, volume and tone to your requirements. You can even connect any audio source via the 3.5mm stereo jack – perfect for jamming along to your favourite music or any recordings you may have. You can even hook it up to an external speaker too! A perfect choice for those who want something unobtrusive and extremely easy to carry around – it’ll fit straight into your guitar case or bag.
Thanks to Marshall build quality the clean tone never sounds weak or tinny, and the crunch will make you feel like you’re playing Download festival main stage! It’s a versatile mini amp that is very easy to carry around too, as you can even jam whilst walking around thanks to the built-in belt clip. If you want the full stack experience, check out the Marshall MS-4 Micro Stack Electric Guitar Amplifier with the extension cab bolted on.
A Little Louder
For those who want their amps a little louder, but with the same amount or portability, another great mini amplifier that should be on your list to try out is the Orange Micro Crush Pix Guitar Amplifier. This is a 3 watt beast of an amp that is actually pretty loud! It’s perfect for those impromptu jams with your friends or for practicing at home thanks to the headphone jack.
You’ll often see this amplifier backstage at gigs or on guitar tech rigs as it’s a perfect warm up amplifier that doesn’t take up too much room without sacrificing quality of sound. It has a built in chromatic tuner as well as strap holders on each side and the two channels with switchable overdrive make sure you have enough tone to play with. This is also a great mini amplifier for overdubs as you get a ferocious growl and beautiful glass like clean tones at the touch of a button.
Whether you want classic rock sounds or ethereal cleans, you can achieve it with the Blackstar Fly 3 as it responds beautifully to any intricacies in your playing. The headphone output is great for silent practice and the 3.5mm input means you can use it as an mp3 player as well. Don’t be fooled by its size as it is capable of some serious volume, especially when paired with the Fly 3 extension cab giving you 6 watts of pure Blackstar tone. A solid, portable option perfect for home use, backstage or even as a small gigging amp if you need a little extra volume.
Let’s Get A LOT Louder!
As previously stated, using a mini amplifier doesn’t mean you get a “mini” sound. There are a huge variety of portable mini amps that you can actually gig with. One such example, is the Orange Micro Terror amplifier and its heavy metal version the Orange Micro Dark. The Micro Terror 20 Watt guitar amplifier head, is one of the coolest amplifiers around, let alone one of the best mini amplifiers. Orange’s world renowned vintage British tube tone has been captured in this 135 x 165 x 95 mm head that weighs less than a kg and can power any 8 or 16 Ohm cab.
It’s that gorgeous Orange tone you know and love in a tiny head that makes good use of a ECC83/12AX7 preamp valve to give you that tube amp sound you need with solid state reliability. Perfectly partnered with the Orange PPC108 Micro Terror Cabinet. For those who want a little more bite, the Micro Dark has a seriously brutal amount of gain and can be easily gigged or taken to practice.
View a complete range of guitar amplifiers and mini amps over at the Dawsons website.