Best Practice Amps of 2020 – Complete Review

Regardless of how passionate or talented you are, practice is the key to success. This cannot stand more accurate in the vast world of guitars, either.

All you need to do is to put in some really good hours of practice at home if you want to get results – impossible without a good practice amp, though!

Let’s have a look at the best practice amps!

Comparison of the Best Practice Amps

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Fender Mustang 1 V2

  • Best practice amp overall
  • 8” Speaker with special design
  • Wide range of effects, including reverb, tremolo, delay/echo, and others
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Orange Amps Electric Guitar Power Amp

  • 2 switchable channels
  • 20-watt solid-state practice amp
  • 8” Speaker, 3 band EQ, gain, reverb and volume
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Fender Champion 20

  • Single-channel
  • Best practice amp for the Money
  • Includes many effects, distortion types and various amp voicings
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Hartke HD25 Bass Combo

  • Best Bass Practice Amp
  • Headphone output and easy to use
  • Controls for treble, mid, volume and bass
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Vox AV 15

  • Best Practice Tube Amp
  • True analog circuitry with twin triode 12AX7 tube
  • The unique design highlights the resonance and tone
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Roland Micro Cube GX

  • Includes power adapter
  • Best Small Practice Amp
  • Compatibility with iPhone, iPad, iPod for simple audio interfacing
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Boss Katana-Mini

  • Best Practice Amp Under $100
  • Includes multi-stage analog gain circuit
  • Can create a warm ambiance through the tape-style delay
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Blackstar 10W

  • Professional recording abilities
  • Best Practice Amp Under $200
  • Comes with 12 stereo effects and 6 voices
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Perks of Getting a New Practice Amp

Assuming you’ve already tried some type of amp, let’s have a look at these intuitive reasons why you should buy a new practice amp:

To Improve Sound Quality

A high-quality amp will make any instrument sound better. If you’re unhappy with current sound quality, a new practice amp might be exactly what you need. A new practice amp will help you determine if you have any issues with your guitar before you decide to make a more expensive investment. A great quality new practice amp will breathe life into your instrument!

To Get a Better Response

Your current amp might not be as responsive as a new one, which means that you are slacking off a bit, and so too is your guitar. A highly responsive amp will make you play the best you can. A high-quality new tube amp or solid-state amp will be highly responsive to your play and encourage you to make leaps forward. 

Improved Tonal Purity and Versatility

A new practice amp will most likely have a drive channel or give you some positive changes when you play harder. Our amps come with some distortion abilities, built-in effects, and quite high power outputs, so you might even be able to hold a small gig with your new practice amp. 

Why Did These Practice Amps Make Our List?

Here is a shortlist of aspects we considered when putting together our list:

Tone Shaping Abilities

First of all, a good quality amp needs to boost the quality of your tunes, or a bad one can truly take down your performance. Our products made it on our list due to their high-quality tone shaping abilities and preserving high-quality performances. 

Wattage and Speaker Size

The second consideration is based on wattage/power and speaker size. These are important for the reasons you need an amp. While wattage is quite abstract (i.e., 5-watt can be louder than 20-watt), when paired with speaker sound and configuration, they can be quite important aspects for your needs, especially if you are planning to take it with you to a small gig as well. 

Fender Mustang 1 V2

Portability

The main point of a practice amp is to be space-saving, portable, and easy to carry around as necessary. It needs to be comfortable, compact, yet robust, and durable to be worth it. 

Channels and Built-in Effects

High-quality amps should also be as versatile as possible. This includes being able to switch between clean and dirty channels, using distortion, reverb, delays, and many more effects, which will help you shape your tones. 

Quick Take: 
Top 3 Picks

Review of the Best Practice Amps

We have now looked at the features of a great practice amp - now let’s look at some of the best options.

Best Overall:
Fender Mustang 1 V2

Fender Mustang I V2 20-Watt 1x8-Inch Combo Electric Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • 8” design speaker
  • Greatly simulates Fender amps
  • Includes 17 amp models and 24 presets
  • Can be used as a USB recording interface
  • Ideal for indoor practice sessions and bedroom jamming
  • Great for practicing with numerous presets, amp models and effects

CONS

  • Cannot control midrange
  • Extremely digitized model
  • Not so suitable for clean tones (they are quite thin without high gain/effects)

What Recent Buyers Report

This amp is one of the best options available on the market for guitarists new to digital recording. It is incredibly versatile and packs a wide variety of effects, models, and other features that allow you great flexibility. The 20 watts of power is much more than you need!

Why it Stands Out to Us

This Mustang practice amp screams power and reliability. They are top-notch amps for today’s guitarists new to digital recording, although it does pack a reasonable amount of authentic amp models. It makes everything a piece of cake – from recording to editing, storing, and sharing your entire library.

Who Will Use This Most

Whether you are into Fender classics or high gain metal distortion, this amp can do everything and much more. It is an ideal amp for practice, both for beginners looking to jump into a limitless universe, or an experienced player in need of some good quality gear for a quick jam.

Bottom Line

Overall, this amp’s main feature is the wide collection of amp presets and effects, which allow you to tweak your tunes to your liking. It is such an exciting ride to discover all of its abilities, controls, effects, and many more! All you need is to make the step and check out this excellent practice amp.

Orange Amps Electric Guitar Power Amplifier, (Crush20RT)

PROS

  • High value for money
  • Highly portable practice amp
  • Compact and highly functional
  • Great performance with noise-reduction abilities
  • Built-in tuner, reverb, 3 band EQ, gain and volume controls

CONS

What Recent Buyers Report

This amp surprises with its top-notch tones and overall sound quality. It has an 8” speaker, which is outstanding quality, and the vintage highs, paired with modern lows, are the perfect mix for any guitarist looking for a high-quality practice amp. What’s best is the level of clarity of this amp, which is a must-have!

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Crush 20 RT has remarkable sound qualities, with well-balanced sounds and multiple controls for reverb, gain, volume, and 3-band EQ. The speaker is also one of the best in terms of power (20 watts) and the quality of sounds.

Who Will Use This Most

The Orange Crush guitar amp is a great asset for any musician, regardless of skill level. Whether you need some thick distortion or a light overdrive, you can achieve both and everything in between with the footswitch for the two channels available. Some metal players might not find enough grit, though.

Bottom Line

Overall, whatever you’re into, whether it is jazz, country music, or rock, you will definitely find this amp is great value for money and high-quality standards. It offers a wide array of tones, they are extremely clear, and the multiple controls allow a high degree of freedom.

Best for the Money:
Fender Champion 20

Fender Champion 20 - 20-Watt Electric Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • Classic Fender design
  • A wide variety of features
  • Ideal for practice and jamming
  • 20-watt practice amp with 8” speaker
  • Wide range of presets to choose from
  • Built-in effects are numerous and high-quality

CONS

  • Cumbersome power switch location
  • Simple controls might limit combinations

What Recent Buyers Report

This amplifier is great for tone shaping. It has a section for equalizing the tones, which includes treble and bass controls. Additionally, the effects include reverb, chorus, vibratome, and delay, which are great to make the combinations you want, and they are ideal for a wide range of music genres.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Fender Champion is well worth its name - despite its small size, it is a true champion among other marketplace choices. It is the perfect example of not having to pay a fortune for good quality sounds packed into a tiny casing, and it offers endless experimentation possibilities.

Who Will Use This Most

If you are an ambitious aspiring guitarist or an intermediate level, you will win a great deal of experience with this Fender amp. You can use it in practice sessions, bedroom jamming, and even take it to a small venue for an occasional gig. It is robust, durable, and you can rely on it at all times.

Bottom Line

Overall, Fender Champion 20-watt offers a lot of bang for the buck! You get massive amounts of effects, presets, amp voicings, and even more – you can take it wherever you go thanks to its minimalistic design. It is extremely easy to use and a must-have for any ambitious musician.

Best Bass Practice Amp:
Hartke HD25 Bass Combo

Hartke HD25 Bass Combo

PROS

  • Sturdy and reliable design
  • Extremely portable and lightweight
  • Can be purchased in different sizes
  • High-quality sound and volume compared to the size
  • 25-watt practice amp with controls for volume, midrange, treble, and bass

CONS

  • Fairly basic
  • No built-in effects
  • Becomes less clear if the instrument is loud

What Recent Buyers Report

This practice amp offers the perfect balance between portability, ease of use, and sound quality. It retains many premium features other amps have and transposes them into a bedroom-friendly amplifier, which can be extensively used for practice sessions. The design is high-quality and long-lasting.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The HD25 Bass Combo stands out to us due to its true capabilities of enriching the low-end tones of your instrument. It can easily amplify the bass with impressive durability, and this amp can definitely outmatch many alternatives for bass combos on the market.

Who Will Use This Most

You can use this amp as a beginner to practice your guitar skills, or even to have a performance in front of a small crowd. It is versatile, yet extremely simple to use due to its fairly limited controls and features. It will be no problem to control it in a rush while in a live performance!

Bottom Line

Overall, the HD25 Bass Combo is excellent as a bass combo, which can be used in small spaces, such as rehearsal rooms, bedroom practice, or even a small venue. The performance to cost ratio is a well-balanced one, and you will definitely not regret it if you give it a chance!

Best Practice Tube Amp:
Vox AV 15

Vox AV15 15w 1x8-Inch Analog Valve Modeling Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • Great design
  • Easy to tweak
  • Versatile and intuitive interface
  • High-quality tube-specific sounds
  • 15-watt practice amp with 8” speaker
  • Construction improves resonance and tone

CONS

  • Lacks external speaker output which could be useful for live performances

What Recent Buyers Report

This product is great if you are looking for consistent quality and great guitar tones. This unit has eight classic preamp circuits and three analog inspired effects that allow you to take your performance to the next level. The effects loop is also another convenient feature. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

The VOX AV30 is one of the most fascinating amps in the VOX army due to its robustness. If you are a fan of the natural chimes and distortions specific to the full-size tube amps, this hybrid one will definitely stand out to you as well. It offers a full range of clean, overdrive, high gain, or crunchy tones. 

Who Will Use This Most

This tube amp is great for both beginners and more experienced players. You can efficiently use it in the studio for recordings, or at home for a quick practice session – whichever you wish! You can tailor its sound qualities to your liking through the bright/fat switches, being perfect for various tastes and music genres. 

Bottom Line

Overall, the Vox AV15 can be the perfect companion to start your music journey or a new best friend along the way for more experienced players. It is affordable, and it faithfully replicates the sweet sounds of tube amps, despite its tiny size and low price. 

Best Small Practice Amp:
Roland Micro Cube GX

Roland MICRO CUBE GX Portable 3-Watt Guitar Amplifier, Red

PROS

  • Offers amp emulation
  • Can save different presets
  • Can connect microphone/guitar
  • Amazing, versatile built-in effects
  • Ultra-compact amp with 5” speaker
  • Can be used with battery and power adapter (supplied)

CONS

  • Overdrive could be improved
  • The tone is unstable at higher volumes
  • Cannot attach both microphone and guitar simultaneously

What Recent Buyers Report

Simple and quite limited, this amp has a great range of usability and functionality, especially if you are not a fan of a lot of ‘bells and whistles’ in your musical gear. When you pair this amp with an electric guitar, it truly shines through even though it has only 3 watts.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This amp stands out to us due to its simplicity, which manages to be paradoxically complex at the same time. Although it is not as packed as other models, it offers a nice range of digital effects (delay, reverb, and eight more). It includes a power adapter, has a compact footprint, and you can save all your tones as you desire.

Who Will Use This Most

Although this tiny 3-watt compact amp is questionable when it comes to its use on a stage, no-one can deny its sound qualities as fitting perfectly in the spotlights. It is incredibly durable, easy to use, and it even has 25 hours of battery use – all you might ask for from a beginner to intermediate amp.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Roland Micro Cube GX is not only versatile, but it also encases quite a wide palette of features and effects. The interface is straightforward, easy to use, and it is suitable for any music genre, ranging from highly distorted metal or a clean, soft jazz sound.

Best Practice Amp Under $100:
Boss Katana-Mini

BOSS Katana Compact 7-Watt Guitar Amplifier (KTN-Mini)

PROS

  • Power controls
  • Has outputs for recording/phone
  • Vibrant, full and high-quality sounds
  • Runs with both an AC adapter and batteries
  • Includes three amp styles (clean, brown and crunch)
  • Dedicated controls for effects for quick adjustments

CONS

  • No footswitch
  • No reverb effect
  • No external cabinet

What Recent Buyers Report

The Boss Katana Mini is a highly flexible practice amp that gives an impressive range of full, vibrant tones. You can easily create a warm ambiance with the delay effect, which can set the footprint through any band setup. Unique design and power control combined work smoothly to create the perfect gear for home playing and practice.

Why it Stands Out to Us

As opposed to other mini-sized amps, the Boss Katana Mini practice amp is a true inspiration once you turn it on and play your first note. The sound quality is exceptional, and you will find out how perfect the combination is between advanced technology, custom speakers and a refined circuitry​.

Who Will Use This Most

This product is great for anyone looking for accessibility, tone shaping capabilities, and a tiny device, ready to rock at any moment. The miniature practice amp is great for traveling, practicing, and the expressive sounds fit well in a wide variety of play styles and music genres.

Bottom Line

All in all, this tiny Boss Katana is a neat option to practice your guitar skills. You can customize its five presets to match all your play needs and achieve a wide range of tones. Quality is outstanding, and it offers high value for the money.

Best Practice Amp Under $200:
Blackstar 10W

Blackstar 10W Digital Stereo Combo (IDCORE10V2)

PROS

  • Affordable price range
  • Great for low registers
  • Wide stereo sound qualities
  • An impressive suite of effects
  • Has a mini USB connection for recording
  • 10 watt combo amp with great quality features

CONS

  • No line level in/out for analog re-amping
  • When using USB, you cannot mute the speaker
  • Only Mac users benefit from aggregate audio devices

What Recent Buyers Report

BlackStar Core 10 Vs. is a great solution for any guitar player who is on a tight budget and wants to benefit from one of the greatest price/quality ratios on the market. The unique controls allow you to adjust the tones to your liking, and you can even use delay and reverb effects at the same time!

Why it Stands Out to Us

This product stands out from the crowd as a highly functional combo amp, which is both versatile and high-performing. The range of effects is impressive, yet one of the best parts is the highly competitive price, which makes this amp a real must-try option. It is highly tweakable, with various options and features.

Who Will Use This Most

Small yet powerful, this combo amp is ideal for home practice for beginners. The controls are intuitive – volume, gain, and ISF equalization. The main onboard effects can be turned into 12 built-in effects by tweaking the reverb, digital delay, and modulation settings.

Bottom Line

For such a price range, there is nothing else you can wish for. It’s easy to dial and store your tones, there are quite a few effects and features to tweak, and you can easily connect to your computer in order to record music and program the amp, apart from many other options waiting to be explored!

Pros and Cons of Practice Amps

Practice amps are excellent products when you are a beginner as they will help you get more experience by having fun practicing sessions. They will introduce you to the all-mighty world of effects and multiple features to allow you to tweak your sounds as you desire. As for more experienced players – we already said it, we all need to practice to get better or just for fun. 

Pros

Here are some of the most important pros associated with a practice amp.

Portability

They are portable and compact, making them easy to take with you no matter where you go. They are also easy to transport and store based on their size.

Affordable

Typically speaking, practice amps are very reasonably priced because they do not have the gear inside for full performances, drastically reducing their cost.

Features

They are normally very easy to use and quite straightforward, plus they are highly versatile and combine numerous features to offer you a top-quality practice experience.

Cons

Of course, with all products, there is a downside. Luckily, there is just the one: 

Power and Functionality

As they are practice amps, they have quite limited functionality and power - but this is to be expected for what it is.

Overall, there are not so many downsides to practice amps, so you should definitely consider getting one or updating your old one. New technologies are developing incredibly quickly, and we recommend looking into these affordable, feature-packed options. 

Conclusion

Overall, there are countless perks of having a practice amp. We offered you some highlights into all the possibilities they offer you, some of their main features, what they are suitable for, and also if they are worth the hype – and we honestly believe they are. They are indispensable products to any musician. All you need to do is pick the one which suits you best!