SMG Poll: Who Make the Best Guitar Amps

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  • Man, I wish I had standing to answer this. I favor a clean Fender style, but Brad Paisley gets some great country tone out of a Vox.

  • Hey Jacob- I know it’s a very subjective sort of thing… but still interesting to see what ya think! My guess is that the search for the ultimate guitar amp will be a lifelong process…. not that I’m complaining! Oh and it must go to eleven, very important ;P

  • Its all down to personal preference, I think they all make quality stuff, its just which gives you the sound you prefer, but its nice to provoke a bit of debate. Of course the other debate is what type tubes/ solid state /hybrids / modelling.

  • I voted for Fender because those are the amps I consistently get good sounds with when I plug in. However, they also have some of the worst amps (IMHO), so I thought I should balance out my vote with this comment.

    • @ gtr1ab, that’s a good point. Fender has so many amps and they’ve been at it for over 60 years… guess they know how to make the best the worst and everything in-between!!!

  • Tons of great amps out there now. For big amp needs, ENGL is tough to beat these days. For small club use, CARR amps have great tones.

    • I’ve heard great things about ENGL and will check out CARR, thanks for the tips!

  • Another small amp that’s very popular on the US Blues circuit these days is RED PLATE AMPS.

    I notice that “other” is the second highest stat in this survey. You oughta do another survey sometime to find out what people DO LIKE besides the makes you listed. Then you’ll gain more useful data.


  • Mark Sanders

    I voted Mesa because that is my primary but, I have a U.S.A. made class A Crate 30 watts that could easily fit under ‘other’. I have found through the years that genre often times is the determining factor in what amp I use. Example, for country, Fender shimmering clean is hard to beat.

  • tom

    I now have a fender, but I’ve played with Vox, Crate, and a few others. My favorite amp is one that I can afford that will fill my need at that time. If I win the lotto Im sure my favorite would change…

  • Tonemaster

    I am a MESA junkie and have been for almost 10 years now. Main rig is a 2:90 power amp and a TriAxis preamp. Backup amp is a Triple Rec

    • @Tonemaster, you’re right, Mesa Boogie makes killer amps! I have a studio .22 which is awesome for a smaller venue, like my apartment 😉

  • Michael Harper

    I’ve had some good ones from just about all of them, but the Bogner Ecstasy that I have is at the top of my list.

  • (quote Tom)”Its all down to personal preference, I think they all make quality stuff, its just which gives you the sound you prefer, but its nice to provoke a bit of debate. Of course the other debate is what type tubes/ solid state /hybrids / modelling.”

    +1 on this observation; which power tubes, which preamp tubes, which speakers, what kind of wood for an enclosure-I picked Mesa just because right now I’m in love with my F50 112. That thing blows the roof off anyplace, but is also very good at lower volumes as well. Pretty good versatility, etc. I’ve done some recording with a Fender G-dec 30 (this year’s model), and they’ve come out great.

    Maybe a good poll would be favorite amps under $1000.00? Over $1000.00?


    • Hi Tom, Thanks for the comment. Great feedback and stay tuned for new polls on SMG on favorite guitar amps under and over $1000!!!

  • well, i gotta say fender….as marshalls are hotrodded fenders, as are boogies…vox are different, but they too were a reaction to the fender amps that were unavailable in england..
    take a look at the schematics…the basic amps are all quite similar …the notable differences are in the tone stacks (and their locations) and how the bass end is biased….other than that, it’s pretty much western electric all the way.

  • Doad

    I’ll just say ‘Other’. The amp that I play the most is the one that I would have to say sounded the best ever, to me. You’d think that a guy as old as me would’ve had better amps or more of them by now, but nope…


    qugley then masa but my fav is my 63 black face twin,guitar and my ampeg b-15 bass the b-is is fron the 70s i think


    the masa has to have vintage 30 speakers

  • Brent DeJong

    For my sound I find that Traynor amps work perfectly for me

  • James

    I voted Other. I like Dr.Z

  • Jeff Pennington

    Any amp that does not buzz, crackle, spit, smoke, hack, play all-day traffic reports, or fails to light up that shiny little light on the face or the top. Prefer for it to reply back the full spectrum of frequencies sent to it via the guitar cable. Added tube inspired tone enhancements would make a nice touch.

  • Doad

    I’ve heard and went through owning quite a few amps this past year-Mesa, Fender, Marshall, even Bugera, but right now I really like Egnater!

  • Richard

    Divided by 13 makes one of the bast amps on the market. Pricey but what a sound.

  • Cary

    Hughes & Kettner, they Rock.

  • Jim Donovan

    nobody loves Soldano? C’mon! Warren Haynes turned me onto them 20 yrs ago.

  • JOHN


  • I’m really liking my new Rivera Clubster 50 w 1/12 combo…..however I prefer small wattage tube heads that I can mix and match with different cabinets and speaker combinations….then there’s the Egnater Rebel that has both EL84 and 6L6 tubes with a blend knob…….yummy

  • jamminfool

    My 1998 Fender Hot Rod Deville 4×10 is the baddest sounding amp I’ve ever owned! 60 watts of pure Fender juice, four Jensen 10s, and a whole lotta attitude…oh yeah, it’s pure badass!

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