So, after the departure of my little Mustang I modelling amp, I am currently amp-less in the US. One of the reasons I had for getting rid of it was that the tones, although OK, were not significantly better than GarageBand on the Mac or JamUp Pro on the iPad and it was a pain the in neck to use — adjusting tones without a PC connected was frankly impractical.
(By the way JamUp Pro by Positive Grid for iPad is absolutely awesome, combining some tasty amp models with effects and practice functionality such as a tuner, looper with pitch shift and the ability to painlessly import tracks from iTunes to play along with — and you can even get a pedal unit from Griffin called Stompbox that works with it…)
But I miss not having an amp, and I’ve always wanted a tube amp. We’re also soon to leave the US and return to Finland where everything is much more expensive, so the time to get one is now.
Back in the day when I did my amp geekout prior to getting he Mustang, I worked out that the Blackstar HT1 or HT1R might be a good bet (1W amp with headphone output and aux in), but another interesting one was the Bugera V5 — a 5W amp with the same features, but significantly cheaper. On Sunday night I was invited to a pre-Black Friday event at the Scottsdale Guitar Center and I ended up putting in order for the V5, discounted from $200 to $150, or about $163 after tax.
Opinion on the ‘Bug’ online appears divided. Most user reviews are positive, but some folks seem to really hate Bugera and their parent company. Behringer, labeling their goods as cheap Chinese crap.
But I am kind of a GAS bottom feeder, so this could suit me down to the ground. We’ll see!