Buying a new solid state amp


peterjams
Registered User
Joined: 02/28/17
Posts: 3

I am getting back into guitar and need to replace my old Line6 SpiderII amp.

I have a 2004 fender strat and I am leaning toward a solid state amp over tube amp mostly for the versatality of playing with all of the sounds and a little for cost.

At first, I was thinking of getting the Fender Mustang II. The Line6 I bought in '04 had ok sound (not great in my opinion), but it also had some reliability issues where it wouldn't always turn on. Plus, the FUSE software and community with it seemed really cool for downloading specific tones.

Today, I see the review in Guitar Tricks Insider for the Spider V120 and it seems like Line6 has also improved significantly over the years. I'm curious if anyone has any comments about how I might consider between the two lines or if there is another manufacturer I should consider.

I'm mostly a hobbyist, but also want an amp that can be miked for playing outside of home.


# 1
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 7,922
Originally Posted by: peterjams

I am getting back into guitar and need to replace my old Line6 SpiderII amp.

Awesome! Both the Line6 & the Fender Mustangs are great choices. And each have pros & cons. But the single most important thing you can do is try before you buy.

I've used both of those amps. The Line6 is sometimes more user friendly for beginners & students that just want to push a preset button & play! And some of them have told me the downloadable presets are easier to deal with on one versus the other.

But that depends on how computer savvy you are or how deep you want to go into that stuff.

My personal preference would be for the Mustang just because it has more timbres that I like to use: models of Fender & Marshall amps. Since I play mostly Strats, it pairs well with the Fender gear. The Line6 seems to lean toward more modern & hi-gain timbres.

But it really comes down to how comfortable you are with manipulating the settings on each amp. And most importantly, how they respond to your playing. Go to a music store that has both of them. Play a Strat through both & see which one you like the most!

Trying out new gear is a lot of fun! Often if I'm seriously considering buying an amp or pedal I will take one of my Strats with me to play through it.

The only other thing I can offer is that if you are going to use it play out & want to mic it, I prefer the live loud sound of a 12" speaker. Both of those company make combos with 12" speakers, so you'd still have to choose. But I think smaller speakers just sound sort of boxy when cranked & mic'd.

Have fun looking for new gear!


Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

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# 2
HDCornerCarver
Registered User
Joined: 05/11/17
Posts: 2

I'm still new to playing so I can't comment on how well it'd be for gigging, but I recently picked up a Fender Champion 40 and am very happy with it. It sounds great clean, and has multiple voice channels to simulate various amps, along with an array of built in effects. Both the voice and FX are easily switched using knobs on the front of the amp, along with a button to set the speed of the FX. You can also purchase a pedal to control the effets on the Champion 40 and 100. I bought my used for $150, new they sell for $200. It's a bit more user friendly than the Mustang in my opinion since both the tone and FX are built in. Just another option you may want to try out


# 3
fuzzb0x
Registered User
Joined: 04/02/13
Posts: 555

The Boss katana and box valvetronic are also amps worth looking at.


# 4