Amp for low volume practice

Make it loud here.
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gusgorman
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Amp for low volume practice

Post by gusgorman » Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:19 am

Hey everyone,

I've got a Blackstar 1 watt HTR1 tube/valve amp which I love the sound of, but I've come to realise its just too loud to use at home so recently I've been practicising with headphones, which is fine - but Ideally I'd like something which I can use without thinking I'm disturbing the downstairs neighbours.

I'm a bit of a tube snob, but seeing as the emulated headphone output on the Blackstar has a digital circuit anyway, I'm thinking maybe I should look at modelling amps.

Anyone got any recommendations? Ideally something simple - tech with too many options doesn't appeal to me, I don't want to sit there flicking between 100 different emulated amps. I just want a decent clean sound for playing funk/soul/disco (which I use a Jazzmaster with Novaks for) and a decent overdrive (I've got a 92 Les Paul Studio which I use for heavier stuff, eg early Funkadelic or Led Zeppelin).

Thanks!

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spacelordmother
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by spacelordmother » Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:34 am

The Yamaha THR amps are fantastic for this. I have a THR10C — easy to dial in and sounds amazing. Gets surprisingly loud, but still sounds good at lower volumes too. Can run on batteries so it’s easy to just pick up and play wherever around the house. I’m not a tube snob, but found lots of consenting opinions while I was researching ahead of the purchase.
http://thewinterpalace.bandcamp.com
http://www.matthewgavette.com/noticing

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gusgorman
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by gusgorman » Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:59 am

spacelordmother wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:34 am
The Yamaha THR amps are fantastic for this. I have a THR10C — easy to dial in and sounds amazing. Gets surprisingly loud, but still sounds good at lower volumes too. Can run on batteries so it’s easy to just pick up and play wherever around the house. I’m not a tube snob, but found lots of consenting opinions while I was researching ahead of the purchase.
Cool thanks!

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guitalias
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by guitalias » Sat Oct 03, 2020 2:09 am

I've got a Vox DA5, the current model is called the Vox Mini 5. Very good at low volume, I don't want to be heard! I'm very much a beginner, just beginning to appreciate the capabilities of the amp. I find the DA5 complex to dial in the effects because they are push button. From what I've seen the Mini 5 has overcome this with simpler way to dial in the effects via knobs instead.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by min7b5 » Sat Oct 03, 2020 8:37 am

spacelordmother wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:34 am
The Yamaha THR amps are fantastic for this. I have a THR10C — easy to dial in and sounds amazing. Gets surprisingly loud, but still sounds good at lower volumes too. Can run on batteries so it’s easy to just pick up and play wherever around the house. I’m not a tube snob, but found lots of consenting opinions while I was researching ahead of the purchase.
Check out John Dale's envelope filter delay setting to open to that sound. It uses some high and low pass delay filtering to really change the sound. You can find him on YT.

Only down side is it had to then be on a preset. Which means if you want to tweak your EQ, you'll have to save it on one of the buttons or continue to use it with your computer.

Great amp.

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Cornelius Plum
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by Cornelius Plum » Sat Oct 03, 2020 9:49 am

spacelordmother wrote:
Sat Oct 03, 2020 1:34 am
The Yamaha THR amps are fantastic for this. I have a THR10C — easy to dial in and sounds amazing. Gets surprisingly loud, but still sounds good at lower volumes too. Can run on batteries so it’s easy to just pick up and play wherever around the house. I’m not a tube snob, but found lots of consenting opinions while I was researching ahead of the purchase.
Seconded!

I also have the THC10C and I love it. It's probably the piece of gear I use the most. Anything that allows you to practice more is a good thing.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by tequila_in_teacups » Sat Oct 03, 2020 11:01 am

Another vote for the THR10C. The clean tone is really nice and where it really excels. I find some very subtle chorus makes it sound really big, being a stereo amp. But I can play it at a comfortable volume and it’s pretty much inaudible to anyone in the next room. The drive tones are good too. The Vox/Matchless model genuinely feels like playing a Vox, I think.

The new THR10II is worth considering too, though it’s a bit pricey. It has all the amp models from the earlier THRs, and the new app for tweaking looks really nice and simple. The old software is not difficult, though, and I pretty much ignore it now that I’ve got a bunch of presets stored.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by Phil4369 » Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:03 am

If money is no object, a Two Notes Captor X or UA OX Box is the best solution if you like tube amps.
I use a Captor X and can play my tubes amps in my bedroom + use it for recording/headphones with the included IR cabs and hundreds available.
It’s way better than the Iridium or the Simplifier that I got. It’s the real sound of the amp.
I also have a Tone King Gremlin coming, it has a good attenuator included. It’s not cheap though but I can’t stay away from real tubes amps long.

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gusgorman
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by gusgorman » Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:05 am

Phil4369 wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 3:03 am
If money is no object, a Two Notes Captor X or UA OX Box is the best solution if you like tube amps.
I use a Captor X and can play my tubes amps in my bedroom + use it for recording/headphones with the included IR cabs and hundreds available.
It’s way better than the Iridium or the Simplifier that I got. It’s the real sound of the amp.
I also have a Tone King Gremlin coming, it has a good attenuator included. It’s not cheap though but I can’t stay away from real tubes amps long.
Thanks, I've got the combo version of the Blackstar so perhaps not the thing I'm looking for now but I'll defo bear that in mind for the future.

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gusgorman
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by gusgorman » Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:08 am

Thanks everyone. Plenty of votes for the THRs. I'm probably just gonna go for the THR5. I don't even have a working smart phone atm ( Nokia 6300 FTW :) ) and my laptop runs Linux so I don't think I'll make use of editing the patches or anything like that, so the simple option will do me fine for now.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by Cornelius Plum » Mon Oct 05, 2020 3:30 am

gusgorman wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 1:08 am
Thanks everyone. Plenty of votes for the THRs. I'm probably just gonna go for the THR5. I don't even have a working smart phone atm ( Nokia 6300 FTW :) ) and my laptop runs Linux so I don't think I'll make use of editing the patches or anything like that, so the simple option will do me fine for now.
I've had my THR10C for about 5 years now, and I've never edited a patch. The stock sounds and the controls that are immediately accessible are good enough for me. I'm always on the deluxe setting and I use pedals if I need a bit more gain.

Does it sound and reacts exactly like a good tube amp? No, I don't think so. But, in my opinion, it's close enough to practice guitar.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by spacelordmother » Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:04 am

Same. I tried the editor once just to see, but haven't used it since and haven't felt the need.

Biggest reasons I went for the 10 was the added models, presets, and 3 band eq as opposed to just a master tone. Still very simple and accessible, but feels more complete to me. That said, I'm sure the 5 will still serve you well.
http://thewinterpalace.bandcamp.com
http://www.matthewgavette.com/noticing

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gusgorman
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by gusgorman » Thu Oct 08, 2020 5:06 am

Cornelius Plum wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 3:30 am
I've had my THR10C for about 5 years now, and I've never edited a patch. The stock sounds and the controls that are immediately accessible are good enough for me. I'm always on the deluxe setting and I use pedals if I need a bit more gain.

Does it sound and reacts exactly like a good tube amp? No, I don't think so. But, in my opinion, it's close enough to practice guitar.
spacelordmother wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 4:04 am
Same. I tried the editor once just to see, but haven't used it since and haven't felt the need.

Biggest reasons I went for the 10 was the added models, presets, and 3 band eq as opposed to just a master tone. Still very simple and accessible, but feels more complete to me. That said, I'm sure the 5 will still serve you well.
Great, thanks people - I've ordered the THR5. Both my local stores were out of stock - alot of people been buying practice amps during the lockdown.

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Cornelius Plum
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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by Cornelius Plum » Thu Oct 08, 2020 6:12 am

Hope you like it!

Tells us how you feel about it.

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Re: Amp for low volume practice

Post by Nevets » Fri Oct 09, 2020 3:40 pm

Great choice. I've been running a THR5 for years now. Wanted to upgrade to the new wireless THRII, but too expensive. I just added a $50 wireless adaptor and it's working fine. I think Yamaha really nailed it with this '3rd Amp' concept. This thing just does what my other amps can't do.

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