Top 10 Guitar Amps For Your Christmas Wishlist
2021 was a special year for guitar amps, with plenty of new and innovative releases whetting the appetites of guitarists worldwide.
Just in time for the holiday season, we've compiled a top 10 list of some of our favourite amplifiers from the past year - and thrown in a few best-sellers for good measure!
It's that time of the year again. As Christmas draws closer, it can be difficult to know where to start when it comes to buying presents - whether you're shopping for someone close or looking to treat yourself!
Luckily for you, we’ve compiled this neat little top 10 guitar amps list so that you can easily find the perfect new amp to plug into on Christmas day. We’ve ensured that there’s a lot of diversity, regarding not only price but also the types of tones that these contenders can offer. So whether you’re a hard-rocking metalhead or a boutique-style blues amp aficionado - we’re confident that you’ll find an inspiring tone-machine to annoy the neighbours with!
BOSS unveiled its second generation of flagship guitar amplifiers in October 2019 - the Katana MkII series! While the originals received worldwide acclaim for their authentic tube tones, high-quality built-in effects and brilliant value, the MkII editions were enhanced with more sounds, effects and connectivity options for even greater versatility. It’s no surprise that these have been best-sellers for the past year - they’re perfect for both home practice and gigging!
BOSS quickly followed up its Katana MkII launch with the release of its highly-innovative Waza-Air wireless headphones. This all-in-one personal guitar amp system won the prestigious ‘Best in Show’ award at the 2020 NAMM Show, and sends pro-grade amp tones straight to your ears! With sounds that derive from the Katana series, other cutting-edge features include immersive ‘Gyro Ambience’ that adds real-time surround sound for a genuine studio, stage and room feel, as well as BOSS ‘Tone Studio’ compatibility. Is this the ultimate silent guitar practice solution? We think so!
For some of Andertons' own Boss Katana patches from The Captain and Danish Pete, head over to Andertons download store
BOSS Katana MkII Amps on Andertons T.V.
The Mustang Micro by Fender is an amp that won’t annoy your neighbours. If you’re the sort of player who wants to get some practice in without disturbing anyone, the Mustang Micro is the perfect solution. Just plug it into your guitar and connect to your headphones by Bluetooth or the headphone socket and enjoy a range of great tones. Using the modelling technology of the Mustang amps, the Mustang Micro has 12 Amp models and 12 built in effects, so you can find any sound you’re looking for. It also has a USB port for recording direct to a computer. And at under £90 it’s the perfect practice tool to put into your gigbag and take with you anywhere.
Fender Mustang Micro on Andertons T.V.
Victory are known for their stunning valve amplifiers made right here in Britain, and now they’ve shrunk 2 of their most popular amps – The Duchess, and The Kraken – down to pedal size! These could be the stompbox sized solution to having to carry heavy amps to gigs. But unlike modelling amps, the Victory V4 Amp Pedals feature all valve driven preamps for a truly authentic valve amp response. This is combined with cutting-edge Two Notes cab sim technology and world-class IR presets, so you can run through a speaker or directly out to your interface or front of house. For gigging musicians this could be your answer for a practical stereo rig, or kept in your gigbag as a backup amp.
Victory V4 Kraken Amp on Andertons T.V.
The Friedman BE-100 is a monstrous rock amplifier, based on the classic Marshall sound, with even more grit. Now you can get the BE-100 sound in a tiny and affordable package. The BE-Mini is a 30-watt solid-state amplifier that brings the ferocious Friedman tone in an enclosure that weighs no more than a couple of bags of sugar! The BE-Mini fulfils the criteria of any guitarist looking for travel friendly rock machine.
From 5-watt combos to 150-watt heads, the Bugera Infinium amp range offers great sounding, super reliable class-A valve amps at an astonishing price! If you’re looking for a valve amp with a small footprint for home and gig use, the T5 Infinium is a small 5-watt lunchbox amp packs a big punch, giving you tones anywhere from warm clean blues to thundering rock and grunge. It also features a three-way attenuation switch to bring it down to 0.1W, to achieve full valve saturation at whisper quiet volumes. All that for £150! On the other end of the scale is the 333XL Infinium, a 120-watt, 3 channel high-gain valve amp. This is loud and aggressive enough too keep up with even the loudest drummers on any stage, and still it comes in at under £500! All Bugera valve amps feature their revolutionary Tube Life Multiplier technology, which can extend the life of power valves by up to 20 times, and reveals an LED light when it’s time to change the valve, so you don’t damage your amp.
Bugera Infinium Vintage Amps on Andertons T.V.
The DSM & Humboldt Simplifier Deluxe is the ultimate pedal sized amp, with 2 channels and built-in stereo reverb. However, unlike most pedal amps, it is entirely analogue, making it very easy to use without any additional software. True to its name, the Simplifier Deluxe contains a small selection of amp settings – offering AC Brit, American and MS Brit (Vox, Fender and Marshall) amp styles, with a choice of clean, crunch, or lead gain controls. This simplicity continues with the cab options – 1x12, 2x12 or 4x12, and with the power valve option – KT66, EL34 and 6L6. There is more than enough variety to finetune your sound without falling into option paralysis. The two channels can be individually programmed to use like a traditional 2-channel amp, using the included footswitch to change channels. Alternatively, you can run both channels in parallel to create the effect of running two amps simultaneously. There are several stereo options for you to run your effects loops, out to cabs or straight to desk, making this little amp a real all-rounder for any application.
DSM & Humboldt Simplifier Deluxe on Andertons T.V.
The Atomic Ampli-Firebox MKII is another pedal sized amp and effects processor. The MKII offers the same simple to use interface from the MKI, and now boasts amp modelling technology from Studio Devil for an even more authentic sound. It features 20 amps models, a 4-band EQ and a variety of effects, all accessible by Atomic’s free software. You can also load in your own IRs to fine tune your sound. The pedal allows you to tweak the EQ and switch between 3 amp models, 3 cab sims and 3 favourite presets without the need to connect to a computer for when you want to play on the fly.
Atomic Ampli-Fire MkII on Andertons T.V.
The Line 6 POD Go is your all-in-one amp and effects solution. It’s compact, lightweight, and easy to use. With pro-grade effects, amps and cab models derived from the renowned Helix, this can be your stand-alone rig or a cog in a larger setup. With the POD Go you can run straight into your DAW or connect to your amp with the 4-cable method.
Line 6’s best-selling HX Stomp got the super-sized treatment in 2021! Packing in the same 300+ amp, cab and effect sounds found in the standard HX Stomp — all derived from the groundbreaking Helix series processor — the XL is essentially an expanded version of the original HX Stomp, boasting 8 capacitative-touch footswitches rather than just 3.
Line 6 POD Go on Andertons T.V.
HX Stomp XL Go on Andertons T.V.
The Headrush MX5 is another all-in-one amp and effects modeller. Its touch screen interface is very intuitive, so you can switch between presets or create your own with ease. Touch, swipe and drag-and-drop to instantly create and edit your perfect tone in an unprecedentedly realistic and intuitive way. It also features a best-in-class 5-minute looper to layer parts in a performance, practice and build your own soundscapes. It also allows you to load audio files into the looper to play along to your favourite songs and backing tracks.
Headrush MX5 on Andertons T.V.
The MG Series has been part of Marshall’s lineup for years. In fact, they’ve become some of the best-selling solid-state amplifiers ever made! A popular choice with beginners for their affordability, Marshall’s MG amplifiers provide iconic “black & gold” sounds but without traditional valve power. Adhering to a transistor-driven design, Marshall MG amps are suitable for bedroom levels but still have enough punch and volume for live scenarios - particularly the bigger ones.
Speaking of which, there’s a huge amount of choice in the MG lineup when it comes to size and features. Ranging from highly-portable 10-watt and 15-watt combos all the way up to 100-watt tone machines, the MG range caters for all price-points and playing needs. Some of those higher up in the range can be worth the extra money though, with more channels, built-in effects, and additional tone-shaping controls. But all models feature thoughtful headphones outputs for silent practice, as well as auxiliary inputs that enable you to jam along to your favourite tracks from a connected phone or MP3 player!
If you're looking for something really "cool" this Christmas though (pun intended), why not kit out your practice space or studio with the Marshall fridge? It doesn't go to 11, but it'll keep your beers chilled!