May 2022

Guitar Amplifiers: Aggregated Ranking Report

This report contains an aggregate consensus of Guitar Amp rankings posted by key online experts, as of May 2022.

At a glance - May 2022 Ranking

Scroll horizontally to browse this ranking table
Rank Change Price Guitar Amp
Guitar World
GuitarPlayer
Gearank
Music Radar
BestCovery
Loud Beats
BestReviews
Music Critic
Consordini
Ledger Note
1
- $149
Orange Crush 20
-
-
1
-
-
3
3
-
-
2
2
- $299
Positive Grid Spark
2
1
-
1
-
-
-
-
-
-
3
- Check price
Mesa Boogie Mark V
13
-
-
17
2
9
-
-
-
-
4
- $159
Orange Micro Terror
1
-
5
-
-
-
2
-
-
-
5
- Check price
Marshall MG50CFX
-
-
-
-
-
1
-
-
-
1
6
- $452
Marshall AS50D
-
-
-
-
6
-
-
3
6
-
7
- $598
Vox AC15
5
-
-
10
-
7
-
-
-
-
8
- $150
Fender Mustang LT25
-
-
2
-
-
-
-
-
1
-
9
- $1700
Marshall SC20H
10
-
-
-
-
-
1
-
-
-
10
- $300
Peavey Vypyr VIP 2
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
7
-
3
11
- $400
Boss Katana 100 MKII
3
-
-
-
-
4
-
-
-
-
12
New * $150
Fender Champion 20
-
-
4
-
-
-
-
10
-
-
13
-1 Check price
Marshall DSL100H
-
-
-
-
12
-
-
-
-
5
14
-1 $750
Fender Blues Junior IV
4
-
-
5
-
-
-
-
-
-
15
-1 $759
Hughes & Kettner TubeMeister 20 Deluxe
7
6
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
16
-1 $900
Blackstar HT Club 40 MKII
8
-
-
-
-
6
-
-
-
-
17
-1 $1449
Victory V40 The Duchess
11
12
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
-
18
-1 Check price
Peavey Invective . 120
14
-
-
19
-
-
-
-
-
-
19
-1 Check price
EVH 5150III 50W EL34
-
-
-
13
-
5
-
-
-
-

We ranked Orange Crush 20 #1 in May 2022 because:

  • 4 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Orange Crush 20 as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Gearank

Best Guitar Combo Amp Under $200

Pros
Earning high ratings in this price range is quite a feat, especially when faced with other amps offer more features. Interestingly, the simplicity of this amp is what helped it gather high scores. And it's not just because it is easy to play - but because there aren't that many things to be unhappy about, only the default Orange overdrive voicing that almost everyone loves. It also helps that it looks good, which is reflected by the many kudos for its distinct visual appeal. Build quality is also often praised.

Cons
There haven't been many complaints about this amp, aside from a few who wish that it had some extra features.

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Simple and neat design.
Convenient to use.
Affordable.

Cons
Low output power restricts it for home use only.
No option to connect to an external cabinet.

Go to ranking

BestReviews

Distortion option

Pros
Geat distortion with this 20-watt amp and four stage preamp. Has clean and dirty modes, a channel foot switch, and aux ports for backing tracks and practice headphones. 8-inch speaker produces rich, harmonic overtones.

Cons
No onboard effects. More gear may be needed to flesh out your tone.

Go to ranking

Ledger Note

Best Budget Pick

Pros
Several wattage choices. The distortion is legendary. The clean channel is exceptional. 3-band EQ & CabSim tech gives you the same tone as their huge cabinets.

Cons
This amp forgoes all of the extra built in effects, proving only distortion. It'll be up to you to score the pedals or rack units you want, otherwise.

Go to ranking

We ranked Positive Grid Spark #2 in May 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked Positive Grid Spark as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The smartest amp on the market

Pros
Impressive smart features
Bluetooth compatible for streaming music
Spark app unlocks even more tones

Cons
Not designed for gigging

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

Is this the smartest amp on the planet?

Pros
Every sound you could ever want
Auto Chord/ Smart Jam features
Affordable

Cons
Not for those who dislike apps

Go to ranking

Music Radar

The ultimate smart guitar amplifier

Pros
Packed with features
Comprehensive range of tones
Smart Jam and Auto Chord features are invaluable for practice and learning

Cons
Waiting times on orders can vary

Go to ranking

Methodology: combine opinions of key experts

Identify Experts

We identify key publishers and experts that consistently review and recommend Guitar Amplifiers.

Capture Rankings

For each publisher we find a currently recommended "top 10" list of Guitar Amplifiers, it must be updated in the last 9 months.

Aggregate Rankings

We put all those lists together and aggregate them. The more frequently a product is recommended, the higher it is in our ranking

Experts chosen for May 2022 ranking

We ranked Mesa Boogie Mark V #3 in May 2022 because:

  • 4 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The best guitar amp for versatile cleans, and devastating gains

Pros
Sounds amazing
Feature-packed

Cons
Could be overkill for some players

Go to ranking

Music Radar

A feature-loaded low-wattage head with built-in speaker emulation

Pros
One of the best small amps on the market
12 possible sounds
Built-in CabClone speaker emulation

Cons
It's not cheap!

Go to ranking

BestCovery

Runner Up

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Excellent sound quality.
Wide range of tone and sound effects.
In-built speaker emulation.

Cons
It is expensive.

Go to ranking

We ranked Orange Micro Terror #4 in May 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Orange Micro Terror as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The tiniest of tiny terrors

Pros
Compact
Cheap

Cons
Not full-tube
Not that loud

Go to ranking

Gearank

Best Guitar Amp Head Under $200

Pros
Many are impressed with the MT20's tone, which is as classic rock friendly as one would expect from an Orange amp. The tone is described as organic and lively, and sounds much more expensive than it actually is. There are also plenty of users who were surprised at how loud this 20-Watt amp head can go, especially when considering its portable and lightweight design.

Cons
This is not an ideal amp for those who want more tone shaping options right on the amp. While it is well loved for its overdriven tones, clean tone is not as desirable to some reviewers.

Go to ranking

BestReviews

Best bang for the buck

Pros
Compact and very affordable. Offers 20 watts of power. Great for young players getting introduced to music or those who share walls with others and can't be loud while shredding.

Cons
Entry-level amp with relatively modest volume, so most will outgrow it.

Go to ranking

We ranked Marshall MG50CFX #5 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 2 experts ranked Marshall MG50CFX as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Loud Beats

Pros
Neat layout.
Affordable.
Sound quality is great.

Cons
The sound produced by clean channel is somewhat bland and weak.

Go to ranking

Ledger Note

Best of the best

Pros
Various wattages available. One clean & 3 distortion channels, all passing through a 3-band EQ & plentiful FX strip. Can save presets for FX recall. Headphone output for quiet practice time.

Cons
The built in tuner isn't very convenient to access unless you route in a foot switch, which is nice to tap in your delays anyways.

Go to ranking

We ranked Marshall AS50D #6 in May 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
BestCovery

Best Acount Guitar Combo Amplifier

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Standard Marshall quality
RCA inputs
Balanced sound
Good for small venues

Go to ranking

Consordini

Best Amp for Acoustic Gigs

Pros
Exceptional sound quality – as soon as you plug into the AS50D you will recognize that it’s a Marshall.
Two channels – this amp can power up your guitar and your microphone at the same time.
Decently strong – the AS50D packs 50 watts of power.

Cons
Not so well suited for heavier types of music – the whole idea of the Acoustic Singer is for it to be used at acoustic shows primarily.

Go to ranking

We ranked Vox AC15 #7 in May 2022 because:

  • 3 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

The best guitar amp for a vintage vibe with class to spare

Pros
Nails that iconic Vox tone
You’ll love the tremolo!

Cons
Not one for the high gain fans

Go to ranking

Music Radar

A classic British combo in 2x12 format

Pros
Usable volume
Classic tones
Responds well to pedals

Cons
May not be enough headroom for totally clean players

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Balanced harmonics and natural sound.
Volume is usable.
Responsive.
Value for money.

Cons
Heavy to carry around.
Channels are not foot-switchable.

Go to ranking

We ranked Fender Mustang LT25 #8 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Fender Mustang LT25 as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Gearank

Best Guitar Combo Amps Under $200

Pros
The Fender Mustang LT25 is often praised for its sonic versatility, which in turn results in getting more bang for the buck. Many of the positive comments point to its Fender clean tones, but there are also those who are happy with its overdriven presets. Music Radar had similar sentiments in their review stating, "We loved the classic Fender cleans, but likewise the thick distortion you can find if you dial it in. Allied to a thoughtful complement of effects that includes modulation, filters, pitch-shifting, delay, reverb and more, the sky is the limit." The amp's sleek design also helps, giving it an appearance that is one step above conventional entry level amp design.

Cons
There are a few who feel that the volume control behaves oddly (too much volume increase as you up turn the knob). There are also some who are not too happy with some of the amp models and presets, especially when compared to its clean tone settings which most users love.

Go to ranking

Consordini

Best Versatile Amp

Pros
Exceptional versatility – there are dozens of preset sounds you can use to shape your tone anyway you see fit.
Great sound quality – even though it’s not particularly loud, the tone coming from this amp is pretty strong and robust.
Built like a brick wall – Fender’s Mustangs pack incredibly sturdy cabinets, and LT 25 is not an exception.

Cons
Only 25 watts – the only problem with this amp is that it’s not suitable for medium sized and bigger venue gigs.

Go to ranking

We ranked Marshall SC20H #9 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
  • Out of those, 1 expert ranked Marshall SC20H as #1.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

This downsized JCM800 is ground zero for the modern Marshall sound

Pros
Classic tones
Looks amazing

Cons
Few extra shiny features

Go to ranking

BestReviews

Best of the best

Pros
Crisp and clear classic tone. Durable construction. Ability to create effect loops as well as direct-to-record functions. Can be combined with other Marshall amps.

Cons
Lacks some of the bells and whistles of premium Marshall amp models.

Go to ranking

We ranked Peavey Vypyr VIP 2 #10 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Critic

Pros
Variable sizes
Exceptional modeling tones
Bass capabilities
Modern design
Lightweight

Go to ranking

Ledger Note

Best Bang for the Buck

Pros
Other wattages available. Built in looper. USB connectivity to computer for easy recording. Far more convenient than lugging around giant pedal boards.

Cons
You'll ultimately want the foot switch to make it easier to use, which is a separate purchase. Could have benefited from a built in compressor.

Go to ranking

We ranked Boss Katana 100 MKII #11 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Could be all you ever need from a guitar amp

Pros
Wide range of sounds
Great value

Cons
Needs the software for deep editing

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Compact & sturdy design.
Excellent in-built sound effects.
Affordable.
Power splitting.

Cons
Does not include a footswitch.
Some may not appreciate the simpler looks.

Go to ranking

We ranked Fender Champion 20 #12 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Gearank

Best Guitar Combo Amps Under $200

Pros
For the price, many are surprised at how good sounding the Champion 20 is, impressing even experienced musicians, myself included. As expected, it gets the Fender clean sound right, a big reason why people rate this amp highly. Many are surprised by its touch sensitivity and clarity, which you normally don't expect from affordable amps. It also gets a lot of kudos for its other amp voicings, including mid-gain and high gain. I love its blackface look, and old school style controls, and many agree with in reviews. Others point to its reliability as another important positive trait. This is surely a great starting amp that can also serve as a good beater amp for those with more playing experience.

Cons
Its in-between design is a double-edged sword, those who want nothing more than a classic plug-and-play amp will find no use for the extra features. While those who need more tone shaping and effects might opt for those focused on digital sound processing. Some wish for a line-out port for sending their signal into PA systems. Finally, with its 8" speaker, don't expect it to have as much low end as bigger combo amps do.

Go to ranking

Music Critic

Pros
Lightweight
17 Amp models
Quality tone
4 effect options
Simple design

Go to ranking

We ranked Marshall DSL100H #13 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
BestCovery

Best Medium Range Guitar Amp Head

Go to ranking

Ledger Note

Best Guitar Amp Head

Go to ranking

We ranked Fender Blues Junior IV #14 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

This amp may be small, but it’s mean too

Pros
Classic tone
Compact

Cons
Not very versatile
Not cheap

Go to ranking

Music Radar

The best low-price combo for all-valve blues tones

Pros
Ace clean tones and hot sizzling drive
Fat switch thickens up single-coils nicely

Cons
Lacks clean headroom when playing with a drummer

Go to ranking

We ranked Hughes & Kettner TubeMeister 20 Deluxe #15 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Technical wizardry meets German engineering

Pros
Modern features
Compact

Cons
Only 20W

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

When tone meets technology

Pros
Built-in Red Box AE DI
Lead boost switch
Solid build quality

Cons
20 Watts may not be enough for some players

Go to ranking

We ranked Blackstar HT Club 40 MKII #16 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Likeable everyman amp rebooted

Pros
UK/USA voicing switch offers versatility
Great-sounding reverb

Cons
May be too many options for some players

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Build quality is great.
Versatile and responsive.
Value for money.

Cons
Quite heavy.

Go to ranking

We ranked Victory V40 The Duchess #17 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

Sometimes, one channel is all you need

Pros
Clean tones to die for
Takes pedals exceptionally well
Super portable lunchbox head

Cons
Voicings are not footswitchable

Go to ranking

GuitarPlayer

A small victory for your guitar tone

Pros
Surprisingly versatile for a one channel amp
Fantastic value for money

Cons
Not for high-gain players

Go to ranking

We ranked Peavey Invective . 120 #18 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Guitar World

A metal head for the new generation

Pros
Excellent clean and gain channels
Modern features

Cons
Most don't need 120W

Go to ranking

Music Radar

A modern metal beast

Pros
In-built noise gate highly effective
Switchable power is super useful
Clean channel is actually good

Cons
Still kinda pricey

Go to ranking

We ranked EVH 5150III 50W EL34 #19 in May 2022 because:

  • 2 independent experts mentioned it in their “best Guitar Amplifiers” rankings.
Critic endorsements:
Music Radar

The best valve head for hard rock and metal

Pros
A compact powerhouse with gain to burn
Exceptional harmonic and dynamic detail
MIDI switchable channels and effects loop

Cons
A lot of volume for domestic use

Go to ranking

Loud Beats

Pros
Sound quality is outstanding.
Tube amplifiers provide natural tones.
Flexible gain controls are effective.

Cons
This guitar amplifier is a little expensive.

Go to ranking