Best Guitar Amplifier Brands

The Top Ten
1 Marshall

I've played a handful of different amps, all being about the same "size", and Marshall is the one that moved me the most. Whether I was plugged in with my Les Paul or my strat, it gave me the tone I was looking for. This may sound weird, but when I first played on a Marshall amp, I was hooked because of the feel it gave me. It just "fits" for me.

Marshall are king when it comes to stacks and rock where fender leads with combos. Marshall offer a wall of sound with punchy lows, strong mids and aggressive highs. But it's not all shrill highs,dial back the trebble a little and you can also get really nice cleans and some real grunt as the crunch sets in. The classic Marshall sound is so coveted that there the market is saturated with imitators.

Been playing guitar for over 30 yrs now. And I have played them all. If your into rock. Rock n roll, hard rock, metal, grunge, thrash. There is no better amp out there. Plain and simple. You get the most massive chucking when doing rhythm and the best screaming solos and pinch harmonics from the marshall. And they are built to last a life time. Line 6 is a poor imatation of a marshall and a fender. There a amp for a youngster to play around with. How many pros on your T.V. do you see using marshall. There's a reason for it. Marshall is the best and will always be.

Whenever I've been unfaitfull and played another amplifier brand it's good to go back to Marshall.
There are a lot of good amps out there, but Marshall give me the sound I want and it do it so well.
It's like getting a little pice of chocolate with your black coffee, it have the little extra touch.

2 Fender

What can you say, if you've played electric guitar you've probably got the Fender amp tone in your brain somewhere, after years of playing in bands I can't get the twin reverb tone out of mine and I'm a bassplayer!

OLD Fender amps good but this NEW Fender are cheaply made over priced amps. Fenders are nothing but junk having thin PCB board, cold solder joint, and fire sale parts. I am not an electrical engineer but my friend is after repairing MY Hot Rod Deville Larry remarks were "this is some of the worst work on circuit board he had seen while fixing the piece of... Wow. I have owned many fenders, Twins, Deluxe Reverb, Fender Bassman, Fender Showman and today fender are not the same? I would take a Marshal even Low end stuff is better than the stuff coming from Mexico. Marshall is not over rate just pricey. Mesa Boogie, Rivera Good quality, Own an Egnater Sweet amp, Vox made in England Hand wired only, 65amps Bubba amp. Peavey Classic 30 II 1x12" you cannot kill 30-Watt Tube Combo or Rolland amps any of these amps are much better than a fender.

You could not give me another New Fender if you did I would sell it...JUNK... LINE 6 is tinker toy many good amps on the market but it looks ...more

People sometimes don't really know what they want and use other brands of amps. They haven't found their sound yet and kind of trying other stuff or heard someone or some artist talking of using it and try. But that is not good enough and then they try a Fender. With a Fender you can create your own sound whether you are using pedals or just using the amp and the guitar. A true wonder for every player. Fender's just the best

Definitely agree that Fender should be number one. Marshall is over rated, and fender brings the tone way better then a Marshall hands down. Marshall makes you pay for their name, fender only charges you for the amp components and the time tested fender quality. Why do you think so many amp companies try to replicate the fender tone?... Because its awesome and blows peoples minds!

3 Mesa Boogie

I have owned a Mesa Boogie Dual Rectifier for 5 years now and couldn't be happier! Granted, the amp took a long time to dial in my perfect tone, but it was a good way to familiarize yourself with the amp. If you want cleans, crunch, distortion, and a wall of gain that is big enough to destory small islands than this is the perfect amp. Not to mention, the customer service is out of this world! About a month after purchasing the amp Mesa Boogie called to make sure everything was okay and I was enjoying the amp. They also ask you to take a questionnaire on how the sales person performed. Great company, Best amps.

I have owned Fender amps and Line 6 amps and while they have been "ok" amps, none of them come close to my newly acquired Mesa Mark V 90watt and 4� - 12 rectifier cab. Amp is super versitile and the time is out of this world. I knew I'd hit the jackpot the first time I plugged up to one. Mark V pairs nicely with my variety of guitars including PRS Holcomb sig, Fender Tele and Strat, Schecter Hellraiser, and Epiphone Les Paul. There's a tone in there for everyone, every guitar and every style of music... you just have to be willing to sit down and get to know the amp. Mesa Boogie is definitely the brand for me so I cast my vote in with them. Great company with quality amps and super friendly/helpful custom service.

I've played through Marshalls and a couple of years ago used a lent Italian The Valve, with great sounds and great craftmanship. It is a real piece of amp art. I recently bought a Mesa Boogie Mini Rectifier 25 and I can assure anyone Mesa Boogie is a marvel. I'd say it's hard to set a definite boundary between great sounding all-valve amps, including Fender and Vox, but my personal taste goes for Mesa Boogie as number one.

Why is Mesa Boogie so low?! Have Mesa Boogie ever made a bad amp? Look how many guys endorse their gear. Have you ever tried a Dual Rectifier or Mark V? It will tear you to shreds. They are AMAZING amps. Best part, they're all tube. Line 6, why the hell are they fifth. Why are they in the top 15? They are nothing but crap digital rubbish. Play a real amp like a Mesa Boogie, line 6, pft. Mesa Boogie is the best amp brand by far.

4 Vox

I love my Vox ac15c1 ok its not an original but its still the Vox sound to me. I love how the tone and volume controls interact in a way that is really confusing if you come from the Fender world. It's really its own thing, a circuit that likes to do things its own way and it loves to be overdriven and ping. Also, greenbacks forever!

The amps that powered British rock from the very start and they end up voted below mesa boogie.

See this is the kind of ignorant BS that bought the end to guitar music in the charts and left us with nothing but the crap there is now. People just don't know jack about squat these days and that's how you end up with Vox at #4 and crap in the charts.

Vox ac15c1 with the alnico blue really is a great sounding amp. It really lets the characteristics of the guitar stand out. Great for blues, rock, country and takes pedals well. The amps low wattage enough that there isn't much need for an overdrive pedal other than a ts808 for added sustain. I've had Marshall, Mesa, Soldano, Fender there is something special about that Vox chime.

Vox ac30 just has that bite that the other amps can't bring. This amp can take any pedal with ease. I've never played a better amp than this one. Marshall and Fender both have fantastic amp but for me the unique sound vox gives is worth more than both of them combined!

5 Divided by 13

Best amp on the market. Made one at a time, point-to-point wiring. Great designs like the dual output stage combos. Take pedals exceptionally well. LOUD! A 9W will blow you everyone out in small bars/clubs. Simply the best.

Tons of big name pros use this, it's such a great studio amp (very common in the studio, all though quite a lot of people don't know about them). You're probably hearing them, but just don't know.

Boutique need I say more?

Best amp I've ever used. C 9/15

6 Orange Amps

Orange amps, where do I even begin? These are killer amps at every price point! I owned a crush 35rt and that thing could SING! From sparkly, buttery cleans to gritty, punchy dirty sounds, Orange is the only brand of amp you ever really need. They are highly underrated, they can do it ALL. When I went to GC I was intending to purchase a Vox Valvetronix but it wasn't the sound I was looking for. I spotted a pretty orange amp (my first time knowing about Orange) and told the salesman that I wanted to try it, he made a face and said "Ah you don't want that" and tried to sell me a 15 watt Bugera tube amp (sounded awful) I got my way in the end and tried out the orange. As I played through the amp the guy says "man this amp actually sounds GOOD" like he couldn't believe it. How can you write something off when you've never even tried it? I feel like that's the approach most guitarists have when it comes to non-popular brands like Epiphone, Orange, Laney, Behringer, Squier etc.

Great amps! These amps are very versatile, and can play just about anything you want. They are made with great materials, and will last nearly forever. Even the cheaper, smaller models are built with solid wood. Orange amps should definitely be higher up on this list because they sound great, are built well, and are affordable

Brilliant amps and should definitely be further up. They are all tube bringing with that the beautiful, warm, and powerful sound that is shared in a similar way with many Mesa Boogie amps, only for about a third of the price. I would strongly recommend this brand if you're into Coheed and Cambria, Iron Maiden or Metalica.

Orange amps just have a wonderful organic growl that no other amp quite matches in my opinion. With 20 years of playing under my belt, I fully understand why Marshall and Fender occupy the top spots, but if I could only ever play one brand for the rest of my life, it would be Orange.

7 Randall

Randall deserves to be up here in this list. Don't get me wrong, they've got a lot to contend with, in Orange and Mesa Boogie in particular, but Randall have always crafted excellent amps. Rugged build and vast tonal opportunities make this brand a mighty force, I mean they were good enough for Dimebag Darrell and countless others, enough said really...

I have a rg75g3 plus amp and it has to be one of the best amps I've used, I also had a blackstar amp but the randall was far better in terms of build quality and overall tone. Plus they were used by dimebag. Why aren't they higher up the list?

Try the new Randall Satan guys...

8 Peavey

Over the years in my travels, I've seen more Peavey amps on real working musicians' stages than any other amp manufacturer. The fact that real, everyday working musicians use and depend on them also dictates that Peavey amps are out there making more money for real working musicians in total, than any other amp out there. Yes, I know, the big act shows have huge backlines of Marshalls behind them, but they are in the minority, as there are more lesser-famed bands and musicians out there working than there are "stars". I "stepped down" to Peavey almost 20 years ago, when I was beginning to have reliability issues with my Fender amps...issues I couldn't afford to keep having while on the road. I still have my old Fender amps, but I've been gigging regularly and exclusively with only Peavey for the past almost 20 years now. I still get the tone I want and need and the reliability I expect in order to keep making a living in music. And by the way, I've been gigging since 1963.

There are lot of great amp out there, but there are overpriced. Peavey prove they can do almost as great as other for a really more decent price. Moreover, they have great features and technical improvement that the "classic" manufactureres avoid to be focus on vintage sound and their reputation... The bandit 112 is a bargain. The valveking series was great budget valve amp for metal. Classic 30 and 6505 are interesting too. Vypr series was also great but it seems their recent series have issues... Anyway they build great amp and doesn't scam people as others do... check it out!

Best choice for rock and metal, the peavey bandit is probaby the best all around amp that is not tube. I don't personally like tube amps but for those who do this amp does clean tone very very well as well as bone crushing distortion. For $350 and is 80watts this amps is the perfect gig amp but be sure to hit the gym, I had one of these and the amp is like 50 or 60 pounds.

I just got done playing around with many amps at guitar center and an old, beaten up Peavey sounded 100x better than a new fender mustang 2 and marshall mg30fx. My friend has a massive line 6 that sounds great on its own but sounds like a cat that just got its tail run over by a truck when you jun pedals to it.

9 Roland

Roland Jazz Chorus (pick your size), enough said. The perfect pedal platform, it'll blow everything off the stage. You will never overcome its headroom.

It's usually integrated with BOSS system effect and of course its portability. Although its small power consumption but its enough to make whole your house get 'bang'! And so the neighbour!

Pure sound for jazz. Like it. Stronger and more reliable than any tube amp.

Amazing quality and versatility!

10 Blackstar

I tried the Laney, H & K, JCM (Marshall), Peavey 6505 and the Eddie Van Halen 5150 when shopping and I purchased the Blackstar Club 50. I do like Marshall tone but it was too pricey. Blackstar has almost identical tone but what I really like is the ISF technology. Basically you can make this head more British (Marshall) sounding or more warm American (Fender) sounding. I play in a cover band and this amp has more versatility than the other amps. I can quickly dial up a hard rock metal sound, alternative, or clean bluesy sound. I have 70's fender combo that this replaced. I love the sound of the fender but the Blackstar has more versatility for what I play. It has 2 settings for clean, dirty and reverb channels. All other heads just feel like a "one trick pony" after using Blackstar. They seem to know what they are doing. Marshall and Fender seem to just ride their 60 year trend. Blackstar are innovators.

I can't believe this! Blackstar are designed and built by retired Marshall professionals and they have every last bit of knowledge on tube amps, heads, and combos. I own a Blackstar HT-1R, it is 1w but it feels like 100w just the way the Blackstar team have combined their ideas and structures and balanced it out with tubes. And line 6 is further up the list? You are mistaken bro. Another thing. These are bloody expensive and aren't very well known but Two Rock make probably the GREATEST amps ever made and I would kill to fire one up!

One of the best and most affordable gigging amps I have ever played. Blackstar accommodates all styles and budgets and should be in place of line 6. Too many people want traditional tone, but Blackstar brings a new edge to the table and builds extremely reliable tough as nails amps with new ideas like the ID series amps, I own an ht40 and am extremely impressed. Get one.

Been playing professionally for 20 plus years. Played Marshall, I love, and crates for a time...loved them too. My Marshall failed one night at a show, so I borrowed a buddies blackstar whom was playing in the opening act. I was sold. I have a id260 that I gigged with for a while, but missed that tube sound and feel. I now gig with a ht stage 60. Best amp I ever used. Pure tube tone...

The Contenders
11 Laney

I tortured a 50W AOR head for over a decade in the 2000s, 50-70 gigs per year. The amp was awesome and it did not have any hiccups during the way. I don't know about new ones but Laneys around the late '80s - early '90s must be among the most reliable amps in production.

Laney is great, I have an Ironheart and that's a competitor for the Pearl 6505+. The Peavey lacks so much compared to the Ironheart as it has 3 channels with 2 separate EQ's (rhythm and clean share an eq) along with a built in pre boost its super versatile and robust. Laney make great amps.

OFC! Laney one of the best amplifier brand, most of famous band in our country used Laney next to Marshall. Small gigs, Big Events etc.

Laney do make remarkable amplifiers. Killswitch Engage use the Laney Ironheart and I believe their tone is very near perfect.

12 Ulbrick

I can not believe Ulbrick Amps are not number 1
Apart from the Divided by 13, which I would say is a close second to Ulbrick amps, the others above are pretty ordinary. (in my humble opinion)

It's the only amp you'll ever need.

13 Line 6

Line 6 have produced some of the best amps with amazing built in effects like the spider IV its an amazing amp I play a spider II and I absolutely love it sounds great for my style just cause most line 6 amps aren't tube amps doesn't mean they're not good amps.

I have a 75-watt Spider and it is the best amp ever. Really loud, great manual and preset effects, easy looping, and you can also use it as a speaker for your iPod or computer.

Line 6 amps are awesome. Their spider model has amazing effects but the only thing about this amp I don't like is that pedals don't sound that good in this because of all of the cool effects it already has

I have a line 6 spider jam 75 watt. Best amp ever. Has all the effects you need for every song. Just amazing what technology it has.

14 Crate

I have played crate amps for years they are reliable and are a key part of my tone. But when it comes down to it the best amp is the amp sounds good to you and that you feel comfortable playing.

I have two Crate amps GX65 connected in stereo via line 6 helix pedalboard, my tone is unique. Great amp for the price.

I think it is a phenomenal amp. I own the fw 65 combo amp and it is one loud amp suitable for stage performances

I have played crate since I started gigging and it's durability and lasting qualities are ideal plus used by Sammy hagar Joe Walsh and Billy gibbons

15 Krank

I've played a krankestein+ and It rocks! Very warm with good cleans. Perhaps I need to try another krank reference to be more accurate, but krankestein+ sound give a good reference of this brand.

The high gain high-rollers, not ahead of a Mesa, but near the same level. Krank's power level is over 9000!

16 Engl

Engl has to be the most underrated amplifiers on the market. I have an engl gigmaster 15 and it is pure awesomeness. No fender cleans but if you want fender cleans buy a fender. The gain section is where this thing shines. I haven't used any kind of distortion pedal since getting this amp. More gain on tap than any Marshall I've ever owned or played. Getting ready to upgrade to the ironball and can't wait. If you like metal, hardcore, punk, grunge, sludge, doom you should look at an engl. This thing will even do blues extremely well without a ts9. It will take pedals very well as this is a 15 watt amp with an effects loop. Wow, right. Won't get that with a tiny terror. Plus these are German designed and built unlike the terror series built in China.

Why is ENGL so low? There amps are of a much better quality than line 6. Line 6 is just a computerised electronic unit with a speaker, whereas ENGL has the balls and umph of a real amp. My ENGL Powerball is amazing, quality build, built to last, and an amazing amount of tone versatility. I cango from 80s thrash to prog metal to blues easily with this amp, without losing that real sound and feel of valve. Very underrated amplifier company, highly recommend! And line 6 are for retards, an abundance of effects does not mean it is a good amp, its about the real vntage tone!

I have an old 1964 60watt Australian Goldentone which I love and will keep. Had a Marshall 800 Lead at one time (head and quad box) when I was in a band but let that go when I stopped gigging. I tried a 50W ENGL combo as I was looking for an amp that was easier to cart around than my old Goldentone and I was blown away with the sound and the build quality. The ENGL should be in the top ten.

Engl amps are maybe the most underrated amps there are. Good for everything. Cleans aren't bad but if you are looking for fender cleans buy a fender. More gain than needed. I got a gigmaster 15 and it rocks. Built in power soak. Effects loop as well. Tiny terror can't touch it.

17 Hughes and Kettner

Bought a Tubemeister 18 Twelve about three years ago. Love the size, and options of this amp. Primarily use it at home. Replaced a Fender and a Marshall combo amps with this one. Really like the sound, but recently blew a power tube as well as a fuse, and capacitor as a result. Replaced the Chinese power tubes with JJ's, when professionally repaired. All seems well, but wonder about the reliability of this amp in the long run. My tech recommended changing the tubes every year or two, especially if using the power soak feature. Running it really hard by doing so. Also, read that it generates more heat inside the cab (no vents. closed back). Overall still like the amp, but after dropping $200 to repair, after spending $800 on the amp.. having second thoughts of long term reliability. Not using the power soak very much any longer, and keeping a better eye on the TSC (tube safety control)... not sure if it actually did what it is suppose to. To me... less features and simplicity could be ...more

I've got a hk switchblade 100 with the matching 4x12 cab with v 30s. It doesn't seem to be the most popular brand but I've made many fellow musicians playing duel rectifiers or 5150s drool over the tone. The veristility is also top notch.. I can go from twangy country to face melting metal tones with the click of a switch.

Own a switch blade 100 halfstack.
Extremely verstile from mellow blue rock to tasty gain death metal. Includes a number of effects and 4 channels. Although old news now since being replaced by the coreblade, still an amazing amp. The higher up models are even more spectacular.

Got a Statesman dual EL84 ("vintage" flavored combo) and love it. The brand is more into "modern" sounding amps. I don't think HK can be on par with the true classics but rank 18 is ridiculous. It deserve to bo be in the top ten.

18 Bugera

Their amps sound great and their new infinium technology has fixed their issues. I really don't care that their amps are just half priced versions of pricier models. The way I see it, if I can get a great tone, the ability of a Peavey Triple X II, and at half the price, I'm going to go for it.

333XL-INFINIUM for the win!

I have the 333 Infinium Head and it is simply amazing how good it is. The TONE is so great on EACH of the 3 channels. I have it since 2 years now, I travel a lot with it.

I've owned a Bugera 333XL Infinium for 2 years and oh, my, god. Amazing tone, amazing sound. I couldn't be happier. Great amp for the price and great for heavy stuff.

I just purchased a Vintage 55 HD... And plugged this baby into my 6505. I can't begin to tell you how great everything sounds... Amazing!

19 EVH

Come on Eddie is a master at tone, and the 5150 series is incredible.

20 Ibanez

I live to love them

They're not that great but my neighbor has one- I played through and its pretty good

21 Soldano
22 Dime
23 Diezel
24 Traynor

I used a Traynor 200 watt bass amp with 6-10" speakers in the 70s. Amazing amplifier. Ran a Fender Precision bass with nylon strings through it.

I stumbled onto a 1970's Traynor YBA-1 and it soon became my favorite amp. I still have my trusty old Fender Quad Reverb and a Traynor YVC-40, but the YBA-1 just seems to make my guitars sound so much better.

They should be in top 5.

Great acoustic amp

25 Behringer

I have this amp and still good.

Great amp for the price,effects are OK for the garage
Player,perfect for use in the right venue all and all a
Good amp.

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