As for guitars, choosing an amp can be very complicated, as there are different kinds of the amp. So that you can understand the choices that will arise to you, it is necessary to know the different components of an amp!
The pre-amp is the essential component in terms of sound character. It is at its level that will be made available settings, whether the equalization (low minds and treble), distortion or the different effects available depending on the model of the amp. The output signal of the pre-amp is sent to the power amp.
The power amp will amplify the signal so that it has a sufficiently powerful output level to send it to the speaker. It is therefore important to note that it is only this element that will be responsible for the wattage of the amp.
However, it should not be forgotten that the power amp also colors the sound, and will be important in the restitution of the dynamics of the sound, and the attack in particular. The perfect options are now available as per https://musiety.com/the-best-2×12-guitar-cabinet-review/.
The cabinet (or speaker) is the final element that will transform the signal from the power amp into mechanical energy, i.e. sound!
The choice of the cabinet is not negligible, and this for several reasons:
- The performance (in dB) of the cabinet will affect the strength of the sound.
- The cabinet colors the sound, so all speakers will not have the same result.
Combo or amp head and cabinet?
To assemble the 3 elements we have just seen, there are several configurations:
The combo is the most used system. It integrates the pre-amp, the power amp, and the cabinet into the same body. Its advantages are to be less bulky, and cheaper! For issues of size, it is rare to find combos with more than 2 speakers; they will be rare at high power. The stack consists of an amp head where we find the pre-amp and amp power, and body where we find the cabinet. The advantage of this configuration is that one can use heads of very high power, and have a configuration of 4 speakers in the cabinet.
- We can obviously choose the cabinet of his head separately, and thus change only head instead of changing the whole amp. This configuration, however, remains relatively more expensive.
- There is a third system, the Rack system, which allows you to independently choose pre-amp, power amp and cabinet.
- To consider only for high-end, the price is even higher.
Which category of amp to choose?
You will have the choice between the acquisition of an amplifier with transistors, lamps (or tubes in English), modeling and hybrids.
- The transistor amp gives a warmer sound and less rich than a tube amp. However, it is the cheapest amp, so it is essential in the low end.
- The tube amp gives a very warm sound with a lot of harmonics. This is the technology favored by most guitarists. Its cost is relatively higher and he is more fragile. This is the most of the high end.
- The modeling amp is an amp that mimics the sounds of a tube amp. If its sound will be less good, it will also be less expensive, and you can find many different sounds and effects that ensure great versatility.