Best Blues Amp Buyer's Guide

Choosing the best blues amp can seem a little daunting at first, but we're here to tell you that you can't go wrong if you stick with the classics.

The blues amps that we have selected for this guide, after reviewing many options, are all ones based on classic amp designs. In fact some of them are arguably better than the original amps they are based on due to superior component manufacturing these days - everything from speakers to tubes are now produced to more exacting specs.

Fender Hot Rod Blues Junior III

Fender Hot Rod Blues Junior III

Blues amplification starts and ends with Fender amps, thanks to their transparent, dynamic and detailed tonality. So to start off this list is a modest but elegant amplifier, the Fender Hot Rod Blues Junior III. This amplifier gives you that distinctive classic Fender tone, only slightly modified to accommodate contemporary blues. And it does so in a modern and modest package, where bells and whistles are kept to minimum in favor of affordability and portability.

With Fender's undeniable presence in the Blues genre, it is only natural that they to find that their tube amplifiers are varied enough to specifically address particular needs at various price points. The Fender Hot Rod Blues Junior III is one that hits the sweet spot right on, in term of quality, versatility and tone while remaining relatively affordable...

Get the latest Hot Rod Blues Junior III price & reviews at | ...Read our full Hot Rod Blues Junior III review here...

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Hot Rod Blues Junior III price: $480

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Peavey Classic 30/112

Peavey Classic 30/112

Behind bands that play pop and other music genres are passionate blues guitarists that are simply waiting to do a wailing blues solo. In a blink of an eye, they can transform their pop and ballad sounds into biting blues tones, thanks to versatile tube amps like the popular workhorse Peavey Classic 30/112.

This amplifier is well known for its versatility, handling anything from ballad, to pop, to hard rock and it will let you seamlessly switch back to blues. Its simply a blues amp hiding behind a seemingly all purpose amp. The Classic 30 can give you that classic breaking clean tone, and its overdrive captures your dynamics and nuances...

Retail Price: $650 | Get the latest Peavey Classic 30/112 price & reviews at | ...Read our full Peavey Classic 30/112 review here.

Video Demo:

Peavey Classic 30/112 price: $650

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Vox AC30C2X

Vox AC30C2X Amplifier

Thanks to its elegant look and distinctive tone, the Vox AC30 continues to be one of the most sought after tube amplifier for blues guitar players.

This amp has satisfied a long list of artists that include Jimmy Page, Rory Gallagher, John Scofield and Brian May just to name a few. And it continues to serve as a great looking backline to many contemporary guitar players. Vox utilizes modern technology to bring back this classic tube amp in all its glory. With the AC30's gorgeous looks, versatility and its uniquely piercing tone, jaws are surely going to drop when you play.

Retail Price: $1,250 | Get the latest Vox AC30C2X price & reviews at | ...Read our full Vox AC30C2X review here.

Video Demo:

Vox AC30C2X price: $1,250

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Fender '65 Super Reverb FSR

Fender '65 Super Reverb FSR

The limited edition Fender '65 Super Reverb FSR is designed to provide the perfect balance of dynamics, clarity, detail and power, that is simply suited for the blues. It is a testament to Fender's dominance in the blues amp demographic - combining impressive classic tones with great aesthetics.

This amp is based on the popular "Blackface" Super Reverb that were widely used in the '60s. It brings back this classic amp with vintage correct specifications and added eye candies for the enjoyment of modern day guitarists. If you play a Stratocaster, then it is imperative that you pair it up with this amp to get the legendary shimmering tone that shaped the sound of blues guitar as we know it...

Retail Price: $1,600 | Get the latest price & reviews at ...Read our full '65 Super Reverb FSR review here

Video Demo:

Fender '65 Super Reverb FSR price: $1,600

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Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker

Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker Combo Amp

The Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker amp is a remake of the amp that was designed for Clapton back in the '60s. It moves away from the glassy Texas style tones and inserts some British flavor, resulting in a fatter and "crunchy" tone, which became the basis for Clapton's "woman tone".

If you wield a Les Paul or other humbucker-equipped guitars, then this is a great blues amp to pair your instrument with. Its classy look, hand-wired construction, and great tones will give you a lifetime's worth of blues bliss...

Retail Price: $2,450 | Get the latest 1962 Bluesbreaker price & reviews at ...Read our full Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker review here.

Video Demo:

Marshall 1962 Bluesbreaker price: $1,600

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Although you might say the list above isn't exhaustive, we have deliberately left out modelling amps, and some of the more prestigious boutique amps due to their lack of general availability. If you have a suggestion for an amp we've missed, please post in the comments below - if we get enough requests for a particular amplifier, then we'll look at reviewing it and including it above.

If you're working to a budget, and these amps are a bit much for you, then check out our recommended list of Cheap Tube Amps or Practice Amps.

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Blues Jr

The Fender Blues Jr is pretty darn tough to beat for the money. Loud enough for light gigging and home use, and it sounds just awesome. Looks good too, if cosmetics are your thing.

Matchless DC/HC/SC 30

I suggest the Matchless DC/HC/Sc 30 be added to your list. I have played most every kind of amp over the last 30 years and the Matchless is undoubtedly the best & most versatile amp that I have ever played. On the one hand it gets the purest clean tone I have ever heard with a Les Paul guitar with just the right amount of compression, and if you want tube driven overdrive, it does that equally as well. Price wise, it is about the same as the Bluesbreaker, but with a way more "ballsy" sound, 30 watts that will blow most 100 watt amps away.

Blues Amps

For the money..Fender tube amps are really hard to beat for playing blues!
Older Trace Elliot Supertramp(before Gibson bought them) and Dean Markley DMC80s worked well for blues..for being Solid State Amps..
but as we all know...facts are facts...nothing beats a Tube Amp!

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