I'm planning on getting a new amp/speaker system in the next 2 weeks. My budget is R3000. What could i go for thats decent. OK so i have a crap guitar but im planning on getting a new guitar after the amp. Also is is better to have a distortion pedal or distortion built into the amp.
I am not the greatest knowledge about amps, but I think The first thing you gotta ask is: what do you need the amp for?
If it is just practice, then a 15 watt Marshall amp or a fender or something would do fine. I got a small Marshall MG15 for under a 1,000, but with the exchange rates now you'll probably pay a bit more. My all time preference is Marshall amps, but that's just me.
Are you playing solo or rhythm? That may make a difference in what you buy. Decide on what tone you like and check the internet what your favorite guitarist use. Always a good start, but don;t try to spend the 100l UD$ they spend!
If you want something to play life, you may want to consider going seriously up in wattages and then your budget just might be a bit small. Are you planning on micing the amp? Many moons ago I had a 80 watt valve amp. never played in large enough venues to need to mic that babe.
You ask about distortion pedals? My personal favorite is to use a distortion pedal. Almost all amp today have a distortion channel and a normal channel. The Marshall for example has a great distortion tone. Problem is that you can not so easily switch that distortion on or off between verses and solo's while playing live. That makes a stomp pedal the preferred choice for most live playing guitarist.
Another choice is the pod type pedals. It has 100's of different distortions and effects built in and sometimes sound as good as the pros.
If you are not playing live (or even if you are and have the adventurous feel) and you already own a laptop, you should consider going for a soft amp simulation. For home studio work and for recording, this is in my opinion the way to go. I just got amplitube 2 plus the jimi Hendrix expansion for a really great price and I am so over the moon with it.
Many more options, but I will stop here by saying that you should go down to Marshall music, or any other large local store, and try out as many as possible.
Thank you seph.
Yes the amp is for Home(practice). I have an amp but sounds so sh*t. I heard about Marshall. Been pricing the amps at Marshall music and there prices aren't to bad. I do have a laptop. Would love to record. What all would i need and estimate price? I also have a piano that i love playing and want to make backing tracks. Do i need an external sound card, or can i just connect my guitar to the line in of my laptop
and have a mike by the Piano.
An external soundcard is a good idea, as on-board card usually do not have great latency. If your lappy has firewire, that is pretty good, but the cards are a bit expensive. USB cards are usually going for reasonable prices. Before you buy, ask the guys if you can try it out to see if the latency is good enough. Anything above 7ms might become an irritation.
Going the software route isn't necessarily a cheap route either. Your soundcard has to have at least one HiZ (high impedance) input, or you'll need to use a DI box too. The "Hardware" version of Guitar Rig doubles as a DI/Interface/footcontroller, but it's an expensive system (About R5.5K IIRC).
Back to amps - The Vox Valvetronics are good and good value for money, as are the Roland Cubes. I haven't been looking closely at stuff lately, but I know they have models in your price range.
I'm going to go for the amp. My skills aren't ready for recording. I'm going to Marshall on Saturday and will have a look at there amp selection.
Thanks for the replies