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Thread: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

  1. #1
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    Default Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Good day,

    I'm thinking about getting a Blackstar HT-5R (1st gen) as a starting tube amp. I've always used effects processors or digital amps. For someone new to the tube amp world, do you think the HT-5R would be a good starter combo amp?

    Thanks,
    GreatOz

  2. #2
    Mojo's Minions Gtrjunior's Avatar
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    Default Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    What types of tones are you looking to get?

    I think the Blackstar is a good choice though. It can get bluesy to hard rock tones easily.
    I have an HT Studio 20 watter and I feel itís a very versatile amp with a very decent clean channel too.

    Is this for home use or live performance?
    Last edited by Gtrjunior; 07-08-2019 at 01:47 PM.

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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    I will likely use it for both, but mostly home. I play a lot of blues and classic rock mostly.

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    Mojo's Minions Gtrjunior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatOz View Post
    I will likely use it for both, but mostly home. I play a lot of blues and classic rock mostly.
    You might want to try one out in a store if possible. I am not sure 5w is gonna cut it live. Sure you can mic it up but still. Iíd suggest at least 20-30w.
    My 20w BStar can get over a loud drummer but not by much.

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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Quote Originally Posted by Gtrjunior View Post
    I am not sure 5w is gonna cut it live. Sure you can mic it up but still. I’d suggest at least 20-30w.
    My 20w BStar can get over a loud drummer but not by much.
    Hmm, I will keep that in the back of my head. A buddy of mine has one and he said he has no issues live. In fact he actually switched to a 5 watt because his 40 watt was too loud for what he needed. Granted, I don't know of the conditions he ran it.

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    Mojo's Minions Gtrjunior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Maybe in a blues setting you would get enough volume.
    In my example I was playing in a rock/somewhat hard rock setting with a very hard hitting drummer.

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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    The Blackstars get a good rep.

    You might need to try one out just to be sure.....when I had one (an HT 50 head) the tones I got seemed to be all to scooped and modern no matter how I set the controls. But each person has their own tone as well as likes and plenty find the amp quite fine for the genres you want.

    The low wattage amps would probably keep up....just. But you would be turning them up so much that you'd probably get no clean tone fullstop. Higher wattage amps allow for clean to just gritty at higher volumes.

  8. #8
    Senior Member PAPADON's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Great for home use and gig worthy a lot more amp for a little less money.

    https://www.guitarcenter.com/Boss/Ka...o-Amplifier.gc

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    One of Jerry's Kids Securb's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    The Blackstar is a great amp but as others have said you might want a bit more headroom when playing with a drummer. You might want to check out the Jet City JCA20H it is a head, not a combo but it is in your price range. Speaker cabs can be found new at decent prices and dirt cheap on the secondary market.

  10. #10
    A Ficus ehdwuld's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    The headphone out of the Blackstar has a cab emulator
    If it ain't loud enough, you shouldn't have to mic it
    Just run a cable ove to the PA

    I have the Bugera G5 which is the clone of the Blackstar

    I like mine alot
    At the lowest wattage setting you can have a conversation over the top of the cranked amp
    At its highest wattage, it sounds great

    I think you'll like it, it has the knob that contours the EQ curve from Marshall to Fender
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  11. #11
    firstlessonologist guitfiddle's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    I would just be worried about running out of headroom live.

    Have you ever tried a Fender Super Champ XD or X2? They're a digital front end into a 15 watt tube amp, and use half a 12AX7 for some of the gain tones. That might be a better option, cause the sound great in the bedroom, and can still go up to a stage without running completely out of headroom. Unless you always mic it, it will be hard to hear clearly once you get it up so far on the volume dial. You could find one used for around the price of the Blackstar.

    Especially with the XD version, voice 3 is a heavily driven tweed type (Think Deluxe or Bassman) and with the gain on 3 or 4, and the volume where you like, it's a dream tone for the music you play.
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    I used to **** on Blackstar amps, mainly because it was the brand Guitar Center basically replaced Crate with -IE their traditional legacy high volume (in units sold), high margin "sell to parents" gear source -presumably because Blackstar had to work some serious deals to get represented on the shelves of the big retailers, where the legacy established brands do not.

    BUT.... I've played some of their stuff since then and it's good stuff and a great value. I did some blind A/Bs and several of their amps could stand toe to toe with the vintage or modern british/American amp they were designed to compete with. I was impressed on several of them.

    So if several experienced players who know that Blackstar say that amp you're thinking of is a good value and performer, I wouldn't think twice about getting it.
    ďFor me, when everything goes wrong Ė thatís when adventure starts.Ē Yvonne Chouinard

  13. #13
    Tone Member BenPerkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    For a beginner amp, I would verify that itís cathode biased so you can easily swap tubes yourself if needed. An amp thatís cathode biased doesnít require you to take it to an amp repair person to install new tubes.

    Personally, I would buy a head and then buy whatever cabinet suits your purpose. A 2x12 should be fine for jamming at home and playing live. Thatís just a matter of choice though. If youíre just playing to a small group of friends, a 1x12 combo would be fine.


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  14. #14
    Mojo's Minions texred's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    Greetings. As a professional beginner, I am proud to announce the end of the vypyr trials. Between my tech advisor and myself, we have been thru 5 VIP Is. Today I finally discovered the secret. 20% of them work. Fifth one's a charm. Today is NAD. Again. The bad news is the jack on Epi LP is f*****. Switched to 007 {HardTail}, and everybody's happy. Also, now I know why multiple guitars are absolutely, positively, necessary. Especially when you're too lazy to do setups.

    Sweetwater called. They want #2 back.
    Last edited by texred; 08-22-2019 at 02:35 PM.













  15. #15
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    Default Re: Thinking about this amp, for an amp beginner

    I ended up getting the mkii head and a 1 x 12 cabinet with a Vintage 30 speaker in it. Both should come in next week, so we'll see how that goes.

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