Best Electric Guitar Amps of 2020 – Ultimate Round-up

Whether you are just diving into the world of high-quality audio or you are already experienced, an amp is a must-have unit to help you with your endeavors.

When you are practicing, recording, or delighting your audience in a live performance, you need a trusty amp by your side.

Let’s check out the best electric guitar amps on the market and why you need to consider them for your shopping list!

Comparison Chart of the Best Electric Guitar Amps

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Fender Champion 100

  • Best electric guitar amp overall
  • Dual-channel solid-state amp with 100 watts
  • Built-in effects: reverb, tremolo, vibratone, chorus, and others
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Peavey Vypyr VIP 2

  • Semi-closed back
  • Ideal for live performances, recording or practice sessions
  • Includes 10 models, such as 7-string guitar, resonator, baritone, bass guitar, acoustic guitar, and many others
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Fender Mustang GT 40

  • Best electric guitar amp for the money
  • Equipped with WIFI for easy updates and access to presets
  • Bluetooth streaming and controls are available from a mobile device
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Blackstar 10W Digital Stereo Combo

  • Best Electric Guitar Amp for Beginners
  • Combo amp with 10 watts power output
  • Dynamic EQ and USB audio for recordings
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Peavey Rage 258

  • Two channels for lead and clean
  • Best Electric Guitar Amp Under $200
  • Great tones, especially chilling low ends
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Fender Pro Junior IV 15W

  • Best Electric Guitar Amp Under $500
  • Tight bass response when overdriven
  • 15-watt power output with 10” Jensen speaker
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When Would You Use an Amp?

An amp is a must-have piece of musical gear in many situations. Here’s a short reminder of why we need them so badly:

Practice

Sometimes we use wired headphones to go ahead with the practice session. But maybe you’ve noticed the sounds are not so loud or high quality as we wish. This happens more often than not, and the good part is that most amplifiers do have input jacks for headphones, so you will not break the windows or upset the neighbors. 

Studio Recording

There are numerous small-sized amplifiers on the market today to help you with studio recording. How do they do that? They give you clear and high-quality gain with a low level of volume, and they can be manipulated easily because they are compact and lightweight. Also, these amps are quite affordable and offer you great tones for the best experience ever – both yours and your listeners’. 

Live Performances

Most small amps are strong enough to satisfy a small gig, but we also have some large, sturdy ones that can shatter an entire area. Either way, you will definitely need a high-quality amp to fuel your performance. 

What Should I Look For When Buying an Electric Guitar Amp?

Here’s a shortlist of what you should consider when choosing the best electric guitar amp for you:

Power

The first consideration is definitely linked to its purpose – do you need it just for practice at home, or you want to use it for gigs or large live performances? The power output represented by watts and the speaker specifications are a great indicator to help you choose.

Fender Champion 100 

Versatility

Some amps have more features and controls, while some include only basic ones. This does not mean it is bad quality – just that they are designed to fulfill different needs. If you are an experimental player and enjoy playing around for fun, an amp with more controls and large access to presets might be the best choice for you. If you know what you need already, a simple one should fit you best. 

Size

Lastly, some amps are bulkier than others. Do you plan to travel from gig to gig a lot? If you need to transport it all the time, you need to have a look at our list for some compact and lightweight products, which will give you high-quality sounds, but in a portable design. 

Quick Take: 
Top 3 Picks

Here are the best electric guitar amps:

  1. Fender Champion 100
  2. Peavey Vypyr VIP 2
  3. Fender Mustang GT 40

Review of the Best Electric Guitar Amps

Now that you know what to look for in a guitar amp, let’s examine some of the most excellent options on the market.

Best Overall:
Fender Champion 100

Fender Champion 100 - 100-Watt Electric Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • Large variety of tones
  • Powerful 100 watts output
  • Clean/distortion channels
  • Affordable and easy to use
  • Easy footswitch manipulation
  • Highly versatile with numerous effects and flexible tones

CONS

  • Bulky
  • No jack for external speakers
  • Can easily get interfered with by other electrical signals

What Recent Buyers Report

This robust and flexible amp is great for any user. Whether you want to play metal, jazz, or blues, this is the perfect companion for you. It is quite powerful at 100 watts and definitely easy to use. The footswitch is highly intuitive, and it is easy to tweak in order to find your ideal tonality.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Fender Champion 100 is a great choice for any electric guitar player. It comprises everything you will ever need – effects such as reverb, tremolo, chorus, and many others, which help you shape the tones to your liking. It is durable and sturdy, and the 100 watts make it loud enough for any settings.

Who Will Use This Most

This electric guitar amplifier is a great option for any electric guitarist, whether you want to play jazz, country, rock, or metal. It is impossible not to value its features and versatility. It is simple to use to fit beginners, but it has enough controls, features, and high-quality sounds to satisfy pickier experienced players.

Bottom Line

Overall, the Fender Champion 100 is our top recommendation for electric guitar amplifiers. For its price range, it is definitely hard to beat – whether you want crisp, punchy tones or rounder ones, this amp has it all. It is one of the best choices you could ever make!

Peavey Vypyr VIP 2 Combo Modeling Guitar Amp 40 Watt Amplifier + 10' Cable

PROS

  • Easy to navigate
  • Clear, crisp sounds and 40 watts output
  • Lightweight design with durable materials
  • Fast response knobs and wide range of adjustability
  • Includes plenty of instrument modes and is highly affordable

CONS

  • Not so easy to use for beginners
  • Less heavy bass sounds than other amps
  • Inconsistent volumes for distortions (sometimes)

What Recent Buyers Report

This amp was very well-received by its users, and the main features that are in outstanding shape are the fantastic, high-quality sounds paired with a sturdy build. All the knobs are highly responsive, and the features are incredibly flexible, so you can tweak it to your liking.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Peavey Vypyr VIP 2 is a revolutionary multi-use amplifier that uses the latest technology to offer you the highest quality of design and top-notch sounds. Built to impress even its most critical audience, this amp makes use of Transtube circuitry and 32-bit processors to achieve this.

Who Will Use This Most

This amp has a large target audience, including novices and professionals alike. It is portable, and it can easily be used by students and beginners, although it might take some ambition to become proficient with all of its features. It is definitely a must-try for professionals – the sound quality is astonishing!

Bottom Line

The Peavey Vypyr VIP 2 offers you a great balance of price and quality. Strong vibe, versatility, flexibility, sound quality, and durability are only a few of the main characteristics of this product. We strongly recommend it to anyone serious about their electric guitar skills.

Best for the Money:
Fender Mustang GT 40

Fender Mustang GT 40 Bluetooth Enabled Solid State Modeling Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • Highly compact and lightweight
  • Display is fully colored for an improved user experience
  • Highly visible and easy to read due to a full-color display
  • Extremely flexible with numerous sounds and effects available
  • Includes WiFi, so it remains up to date and offers access to presets exchanges
  • Bluetooth and USB connectivity can be used to access mobile device/computer

CONS

  • Sounds a bit too ‘digital’
  • Not so powerful sounds

What Recent Buyers Report

This Fender amplifier for electric guitars is a tiny but phenomenal device that allows you to exercise your skills with high fidelity and quick response. You can change the effects throughout the signal chain as you wish, and it is easy to use due to the fully colored LCD.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Fender Mustang GT40 is one of our top picks for best electric guitar amps due to its 40-watts of power and, most importantly, the endless tone combinations that can be realized with its modern features. You can use WiFi in order to download new presets, and you can use Bluetooth to control it from your phone.

Who Will Use This Most

This electric guitar amp is a great start for beginners. While pros might not enjoy it as much due to its slightly lower sound quality, a beginner will make great use of it. It is affordable and, most importantly, offers wide access to numerous combinations and features.

Bottom Line

Overall, with more than 45 effects, the Mustang GT can offer you a wide variety of tones, ranging from classic or brand-new customized ones as you wish. The power output is strong enough to suit numerous settings, and it is sturdy and extremely flexible. Definitely a great choice for a solid-state amp!

Best Electric Guitar Amp for Beginners:
Blackstar 10W Digital Stereo Combo

Blackstar 10W Digital Stereo Combo (IDCORE10V2)

PROS

  • Ideal for recording
  • High-quality sounds
  • Contains USB connection
  • Goes well with low registers
  • Highly versatile with 6 voices and 12 stereo effects

CONS

  • No analog re-amping
  • Aggregate audio devices only for Mac users
  • Cannot mute speaker during USB connection

What Recent Buyers Report

Highly performing and versatile, this Blackstar Core 10 VS is a true rock star among other similar amps on the market. The effect range is truly impressive and a must-try, but what is truly unbelievable is the highly competitive price. Overall, it is a bargain that cannot be missed!

Why it Stands Out to Us

This amp is a great combination of traditional and modern. While it keeps the simplicity of often traditional, simple amps, the Blackstar is highly programmable due to its highly modern features. You can shape your own, personalized sounds as you wish, and it comes with six different channels.

Who Will Use This Most

The 10-watt power output makes it strong enough for home practice, but might also be useful for track recording. The controls are highly intuitive and thus ideal for both beginners and professionals. With a bit of experience, you will be able to navigate from clean, warm tones to super crunch in no time!

Bottom Line

Easy to use and extremely affordable, the Blackstar is an incredible bargain. It is one of the most capable small-sized amps on the market, yet it comes with numerous features that not even some full-sized amps have. Positively a must-try, and especially recommended for studio recordings!

Best Electric Guitar Amp Under $200:
Peavey Rage 258

Peavey Rage 258 Guitar Combo Amp

PROS

  • Highly affordable
  • High-quality sounds
  • Includes EQ for tone shaping
  • Two voicings modern/vintage
  • Easy to use with intuitive controls
  • Straightforward and great for beginners

CONS

  • Not as versatile as other amps
  • Confusion terminology of knobs

What Recent Buyers Report

This amp is an excellent option for anyone looking for simplicity. Other products might be highly versatile and full of controls, but this tiny amp is extremely simple and more limited, which can be a real advantage for beginners since it is less confusing and easier to understand.

Why it Stands Out to Us

For any list to be complete, a balance between versatility and simplicity needs to be reached. The Peavey Range 258 does exactly that, offering 25 watts of power and two channels for clean/lead options. But not to worry – it still features controls for pre-gain and post-gain, three-way switch for amp modeling, and quite a few more.

Who Will Use This Most

This amp really shines for beginners or anyone looking for the perfect amp for practice. The tones are clean, although it is best used for distortion – the true diamond of this amp. It is a good option for a small gig, rehearsals, or home practice!

Bottom Line

Overall, Peavey Rage 258 is a tremendous amp for anyone on a tight budget. It offers everything you need for a high-quality band rehearsal, a small gig, or simply to practice at home whenever you like at a price below $200. It includes all the required basic features, and it is incredibly convenient and easy to use.

Best Electric Guitar Amp Under $500:
Fender Pro Junior IV 15W

Fender Pro Junior IV 15 Watt Electric Guitar Amplifier

PROS

  • 15-watts power output
  • Highly competitive price
  • Great for bass response when overdriven
  • Outstanding performance when recording
  • Vintage design with leather handle for easy manipulation

CONS

  • Poor packaging
  • Poor quality control
  • Design could be improved

What Recent Buyers Report

This electric guitar amp is yet another Fender classic that comes with a vintage vibe. It packs interesting features, effects, and controls, which beg to be explored for either the perfect, clean tones or a bit of a crunch. It has a fantastic bass response when it is overdriven!

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Pro Junior IV is an astonishing amplifier with a balanced, clean tone that can gradually become richer and add multi-layered overdrive as you crank up the volume control. The volume has especially been improved to add a gradual change from clean to dirty sounds!

Who Will Use This Most

This amp is great for any guitarist out there who needs the perfect balance between tone quality and touch-sensitive quick responses. For single coils, the sounds remain polite more or less until the halfway volume, while humbuckers break up a bit earlier. Absolutely a must-have!

Bottom Line

With a premium price, the 15-watt Pro Junior IV is a great practice or recording amp, giving you a compact unit with a straightforward, tweakable tone. Whether you need a balanced, clean tone or are looking for some dirty sounds, this amp has it all!

Advantages and Disadvantages of Electric Guitar Amps

Here is a list of the main advantages and disadvantages of electric guitar amps:

Advantages

High-quality electric guitar amps are extremely important in shaping your tones, comparable in importance to the guitar itself. A great amplifier will make your guitar stand out from the crowd and give it more punch; they often come with built-in effects, so you don’t need many effect pedals

Here are the main advantages you can expect when using the electric guitar amps on this list:

  • Highly affordable 
  • High-quality materials, which are light and easy to transport
  • They are sturdy and reliable
  • Some of them have a wide range of features
  • Highly versatile with numerous controls
  • Some of them have access to presets
  • Quite straightforward to use

Disadvantages

Overall, if you are still trying to decide if you need an amplifier or not, you might realize that all guitarists have to get one sooner or later, even if you are just a beginner. And after all, most of our products are so competitively priced that there is literally no reason why you should not check one out. 

When it comes to disadvantages, these are the biggest (and yet still minor) cons:

  • Might sound a bit too ‘digital’
  • Might lack heavy distortion effects

How to Set Up an Electric Guitar Amp

Getting a new electric guitar amp is all fun until you actually try it out – and ugh, what is that noise? The amp is all good – all you need to know is some basic controls to help you set up your new amp. Once you do this, there is an endless universe ahead of you!

  1. If you’ve used head amps previously, do not go for the same controls straight away. Firstly, the new one is different, and additionally, if you want it to sound exactly like the old one, there’s no point in getting a new one! The point is to tweak the new one to sound much better.

  2. Set the gain and volume controls to a manageable level – for instance, the gain should be somewhere around 10 o’clock (or 3 or 4 if the knob has 10 levels) and start to crank up the volume until a comfortable level gradually. 

  3. Center the EQ control (12 o’clock or the middle). This will be a starting point, and you can tweak it until it sounds good to you. 

  4. Start tweaking little by little, up and down, all the other controls, such as treble, bass, mid, or whatever other controls for tone shaping you have. 

Conclusion

Overall, amplifiers are roughly as important as your guitar when it comes to tone-shaping and the quality of your music. This is why we decided to walk you through the uses of an electric guitar amplifier, when to use it, how to get a quality one, and which features are the most important, based on your needs. 

People Also Ask

Here’s a short FAQ section to answer your most common questions regarding whether you can play the guitar without an amp, if amplifiers are power-hungry or not, and how many amps a guitar amp uses.

Can You Play the Electric Guitar Without an Amp?

Try to strum your guitar without an amp, and it will definitely make a bit of noise. However, if you want to take advantage of your guitar’s true power, plug it into a high-quality amplifier, match it with some effect pedals, and start rocking! 

How Many Amps Does a Guitar Amp Use?

The consumption needs of your amplifier are shown on the back of the amp or the power cord. There is not a straightforward way to determine this since they have different builds, but usually, the fuse value needs to be multiplied by the line voltage – this is the maximum usage, but often, it is one third or half of that amount. 

Do Guitar Amps Use a Lot of Electricity?

If you’re worried about your electricity bill, you can rest assured as a guitar amplifier will consume much less than your boiler or air conditioner. You can determine how much electricity it draws by multiplying the fuse value on the amplifier (which will be in amps) by the value of the voltage of the wall outlet – usually 120v for US outlets.