Best Amp for Beginners: Our Top 10 List

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Choosing a guitar amplifier can be a difficult task when you are just starting out, as there are so many options out there that it can become confusing. In this article, we will unpack the top options for you, and give you our expert view to find the best guitar amp out there for beginners. 

pexels clem guitar amp

What is the best guitar amp for beginners? 

When choosing a guitar amp as a beginner, it is important not to get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of choice out there. When you go and see your favourite band you may see huge great  Marshall amps on the stage, blasting out music at high decibels, but this isn’t necessarily the route to go down – certainly not when just starting out. It would be useful to first set out what kind of music you hope to be making, which will help in your amplifier choice. 

Acoustic guitar 

Most guitar amps are designed for electric guitar, but you can get acoustic guitar amps. Due to the simpler sound of an acoustic guitar, and the fact that it’s not always played very loudly, there is no absolute need to own an acoustic guitar amp. Most acoustic guitars either get played through electric guitar amps or plugged straight into the PA system of the venue/band. It would be perfectly acceptable not to have an acoustic amp, but, if you feel like busking or playing very stripped-down sets and want to be self-contained, there are some great amps out there. 

AER Compact 60 MkIV 

aer amp for beginners

Along with the Roland Street Cube, this is the busker’s go-to amp. It is compact and very durable and is a great amp either for basking or for acoustic stage performances. It is the favourite of  Tommy Emmanuel. At around £890, it is on the expensive side for a beginner’s amp, so it may be a better second amp, but it is fully worth looking at, as it’s so good. 

Guide price: £890

Reasons to buy: Solid, compact and a very clear sound 

Reasons to avoid: Expensive 

Roland Street Cube 

roland street cube amp

Another buskers classic, the Roland Street Cube is adaptable, compact and surprisingly powerful for its size. It is a great weight to carry around and is either battery-powered or can be plugged in.  There are 2 easy inputs and the reverb for vocals is good. 

Guide price: £220 

Reasons to buy: Good price, compact and a very clear sound 

Reasons to avoid: The guitar preset sounds are a bit synthetic and it works better outside in a  busking capacity than inside. 

Boss Acoustic Singer Live LT 

boss amp

This is known as one of the best value-for-money amps out there. It has an excellent design and tone, making it very attractive to singer-songwriters. It has some great acoustic guitar presets to change your tone, and also some interesting vocal enhancement features. 

Guide price: £299-349 

Reasons to buy: Good price, great lightweight design and some great tones.

Reasons to avoid: It is not quite as in-depth as the PRO version 

Blackstar Sonnet 120 Acoustic Guitar Amp 

blackstar sonnet 60 amp

The Blackstar has excellent reverb, great vocal and guitar tones and is the most natural of amps we’ve discussed so far. Designed in collaboration with English singer-songwriter Jon Gomm and is a high-quality amp for a reasonable price. It has up to 4 different reverbs and a built-in stand for ease when performing. 

Guide price: £479 

Reasons to buy: Lovely, natural tones and a great choice of reverbs. 

Reasons to avoid: There is no chorus setting. 

Fishman Loudbox mini charge   

best amp for beginners

Perhaps best known for their guitar pickups, Fishman also make excellent amps! This one is again aimed at buskers, keeping it simple with one input for vocals, one for guitar and an auxiliary input to plug iPads and phones into. This simple but powerful amp is a real find. The playing time from one charge is said to be excellent, and it is very portable. There are some good reverb options for voice and guitar, so you should have all you need. 

Guide price: £410 

Reasons to buy: Great design, very portable and easy to use 

Reasons to avoid: It has limited outputs

Best electric guitar amp for beginners 

When it comes to electric guitar amps, a whole new world of possibilities opens up! We will limit it to the very best electric guitar amp for beginners, as tempting as it would be to give a rundown of all the fantastic electric guitar amps out there! As it turns out, there are lots of great options for best beginner practice amps for electric guitar, so here are a few options: 

Fender Frontman Guitar Amp 

fender frontman amp

At just 10watts and a nice small size, this is a great beginner’s amp, perfect for practice, either at home or in the rehearsal studio. With ample power and a nice clean tone, you can’t go wrong with this one. There are also distortion options and other effects if you would like them. It’s very affordable and portable and will do a very good job. 

Guide price: £65 

Reasons to buy: Very affordable, portable and good quality sound. 

Reasons to avoid: Probably not suited to gigging, but great for practice. 

Vox Pathfinder 10w Combo Amp 

vox path amp

With the eye-catching look of the classic British Vox amp, this will certainly make you look good!  It has a nice analogy quality to the sound and again is reasonably powerful at 10w, perfect for practicing and small settings. There is also a headphone socket for practising at home, or in private.  It also has a clean/overdrive gauge to give you some effects. Like the Fender, it is very affordable.

Guide price: £69 

Reasons to buy: Very affordable, portable and analog quality sound – and it looks great! Reasons to avoid: Probably not suited to gigging, but great for practice. 

BOSS Ktn-Mini Katana Portable Guitar Amplifier 

boss ktn amp

Although only 7watts in output, this Boss amp packs a bigger punch than you’d imagine from looking at it. It’s compact enough to carry around but powerful enough to make an impression. With inputs for guitar and vocals as well as an auxiliary, it is adaptable and runs on 6 x AA Batteries or an  AC Adaptor. 

Guide price: £85 

Reasons to buy: Affordable, compact and easy to carry around. 

Reasons to avoid: Not quite as powerful as the other options we have covered. 

15w electric guitar practice amp by Gear For Music 

pexels arthouse studio

Although not one of your famous guitar amp makers, this is worth a mention due to its price and simple design. Gear for Music sell all makes of music equipment, but also make their own based on their experience of other brands. This means you can get some good pieces of equipment from them. At 15watts it’s the most powerful of our options covered, and although the design is a little dated, it does resemble a Fender amp. This amp is simple but effective. With no microphone input,  it focuses just on guitar and headphones for practice. 

Guide price: £29

Reasons to buy: Amazing value for money and simple design. Perfect for guitar practice. 15 watts output is powerful for its size. 

Reasons to avoid: It will lack the clarity and build quality of the other more established brands. 

Best bass guitar amp for beginners 

pexels alena sharkova

We have unpacked the best beginner amp for guitar, so now we will briefly give you a couple of options for the bass guitar. Bass amps tend to be very heavy and quite hard to carry around to gigs,  so it’s best to buy something lightweight when first starting out. You can get some massive amps with cabs on top, but for now – let’s keep it simple. 

For the bass, you want something quite powerful, to enable the base notes to cut through the mix in rehearsals and gigs. You also don’t want it to be too cumbersome to carry around. 

The Redsub BA-60W 

redsub amp

This is a great option because it is both powerful at 60 watts and small enough to be portable. Billed as the ultimate practice amp, it is often used by more advanced players as an alternative at rehearsals as it is lighter than most amps. It also offers some great tonal options and is affordable at around £148. 

Laney R1 Bass Combo Amp 

laney amp

This one is slightly cheaper at £126, but still a great option. Laney is a reliable Bass amp maker, and you won’t be disappointed. 

It has rich tones and is versatile for rehearsal and stage use. Slightly heavier than the Redsub, but still workable.

Best Fender Amp For Beginners

fender amp

Fender is so well known for amps, that it’s hard to choose the best one, but for the love of sheer classic amps, we have gone for the Fender Deluxe. Used by literally everyone from Led Zeppelin to the Beatles, this amp is still popular today amongst guitarists around the world. 

Fender Deluxe 

fender amp

The Fender deluxe was first developed in 1968. Its silver and turquoise front panel and aluminum drip edge were seen as fresh at the time, and it still looks great today. It was quite small and compact for an amp and it produces a world-class tone. The deluxe has been a go-to amplifier for countless guitarists throughout the years and is still going strong today. 


So, let’s recap and run down our top 10 best amps for beginners:

10. 15w electric guitar practice amp by Gear For Music

9. Fender Frontman Guitar Amp

8. The Redsub BA-60W

7. Roland Street Cube


5. BOSS Ktn-Mini Katana Portable Guitar Amplifier

4. Laney R1 Bass Combo Amp 

3 . Blackstar Sonnet 120 Acoustic Guitar Amp

2. Fishman Loudbox mini charge   

1.Vox Pathfinder 10w Combo Amp 

There you have it, our choices for the best amp for beginners. In the end, it will probably come down to personal choice, so whichever amp you choose, remember to enjoy the journey through the bass, electric or acoustic guitar and make the most of all the fantastic amps that are on offer.

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