There are so many different types of channel amp brands, types, and models on the market today, so it’s totally understandable if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the number of choices you have to pick from.
Making the wrong decision when choosing your channel amp can not only cost your time and money but can even put your speakers a risk.
Before going through with a final decision for your 4 Chanel amp, you need to do a bit of research to find the best combo amp that’s best for you.
Combo amps provide musicians with an amplifier that has a crisper and cleaner sound, at all levels of volume. The external combo amp takes the signal that your clean pre-amp produces and amplifies the sound to the best level of your RMS that your speakers need, without adding any distortion to your signal.
If you’re interested in an external amplifier, you’re looking at one of the most affordable ways to upgrade your sound system without having to change out your speakers or your receiver. If you’re looking to increase your sound’s bass and clarity, all you’re going to need is an external amplifier.
Adding an external amplifier boosts the amount of power your back and front speakers, which will provide you with a world of difference in the quality of sound and production of the volume.
The most amazing part of these amplifiers is that they are small enough to be installed on your car’s dashboard, but are powerful enough to breathe a fresh wave of life into your system, making it sound completely brand new.
No matter what your price range is, you are certain to find a combo amp that suits your personal taste and your budget.
What is a combo amp?
If we’re just talking about the simple version of what a combo amp is, it’s an amplifier that puts out equal power in four separate channels. At the very basic version of a combo amp, you can use the multi-channel amp on two pairs of full-range speakers.
However, combo amps are at their most versatile when you bridge two amps; in order to bridge two amps together, you are going to need to combine the power of the two amps into one single amp. There are many combo amps that have the ability to bridge between two or even three channels.
In the situation where you are looking to have a 3 channel confirmation, you are going to need to have power for a subwoofer from the bridged channels and two channels that are remaining, in order to be able to power up a pair of speakers.
Bridge down to the two channels and the amp will provide enough power for the two subwoofers or a single dual voice coil subwoofer.
Why would someone want a combo amplifier? An un-bridged combo amp gives a guitarist an amazing amount of control over the fade and the balance of your speakers; it also provides musicians with the ability to give more of a punch to the middle and bass tones. Bridging two amps together can provide more power than the sum of two channels that have a woofer.
Bridging two amps together can be very difficult, but not all amps are created to be bridged together and not all bridgeable amps bridged together in the same way. When you bridge an amp together, you change the impedance; bridging your amps together can increase the risk of damaging your amplifiers and your speakers.
How do I know which combo amp is right for me?
Picking out the proper type of amplifier is absolutely imperative, as the amplifier is the backbone of the tone that your guitar produces. A lot of professional guitarists often talk about how finding the perfect amp tone is a journey that never seems to end.
The DSL15C is the smaller version of the DSL40C; this amp is 15 ways, compared to 40, which also makes it a great practice amp if you’re looking for that! If you’re not looking for a practice amp, you can always add a mic in front of our amp if you’re looking to perform on stage.
Even for an at-home practice amp, the DSL15C provides musicians with an amazing amount of versatility. Dial the amp back to receive a smooth overdrive with a bluesy sound or you can turn the amp up and receive a floor shaking sound (for a practice amp).
This 40-watt amp pushes through with a single Celestial speaker, with a Pentode switch that you can use to switch the power of 40 watts to 20 watts to give your tone more of a roundness to it. There are two channels, which are Classic Gain and Ultra Gain, and have two models per channel.
You can really shape your guitar’s sound with three-band EQ (bass, middle, treble) and controls for resonance, presence, and a mid-shift button.The additional feature that comes with this amp is a foot switchable reverb, level control for each channel, an FX loop, and external speaker jacks.
Fender Hot Rod Deluxe
Fender’s Hot Rod Deluxe has provided musicians all over the world with a quality amp for years and years. This amplifier makes a great practice amp, especially since it’s only 15 watts and doesn’t have a large production of sound. I think this amplifier is perfect to use if you’re interested in playing a bit of country, rock, and blues.
The Fender Hot Rod Deluxe provides musicians with a clear, glassy, and smooth sound that has a natural overdrive. The Hot Rod Deluxe has 40 watts of power that go through a single Celestial speaker.
This amplifier has three channels: normal, drive, and more drive. Some of the controls that are on this amp are Bright Switch, Master Volume, Presence, Treble, Middle, Bass, Drive Volume, Drive Select Switch, and Reverb.
This amp features an effects loop, a 2 button footswitch, an external speaker jack, and a red jewel pilot light.
Peavey 6505 Plus 112
The Peavey ValveKing II has an amazing high gain and has a great amount of power, at 60 amps with a Sheffield speaker; a Sheffield speaker has a darker sound than Celestial, and this speaker compliments this amp perfectly. This amp has two channels: Lead and Rhythm, with four bands EQs for each channel, Pre Gain, Post Gain, Presence, and Resonance.
Both of the channels on this amp are high gain, but you can really achieve some clean sounds on the amp by lowering the Pre-Gain control on the Rhythm channel.
My biggest complaint about this amp is that it’s a bit heavy, at 61 pounds. The Peavey 6505 Plus 112 has an external speak output jack, an effects loop, a footswitch, and a microphone simulated XLR output.
All of the amps listed in this article have many similarities, but they are different enough to serve different types of guitar players different purposes. For a lot of guitar players, finding the right type of combo amp takes a lot of trial and error in order to figure out what sound you’re exactly looking for and what tone you want your instrument to produce.
In the end, you are going to find a combo amp that perfectly fits your sound. Your choice of guitar, your playing style, and your choices in the amp will greatly impact the sound quality and tonal production of your guitar.