A great guitar amp can transform an average guitar into an incredible sound; as such, it is vital to find the amp that has the right features and tones to meet your needs. With the vast number available, it is not easy to find the right amp – here are some guitar amp 2021 options. This is especially true because each combo or head has its own set of best pros and worst cons. When buying an amp, power should be at the forefront of your mind. There is really no point in purchasing a 100-watt stack with no attenuation for guitar use in the bedroom. Likewise, the lower powered mini heads might not cut it in performance venues.
Quick Links To Our Best Guitar Amp Under $1000 Recommendations
- PRS MT 15 Mark Tremonti – OUR TOP CHOICE! A darn sweet amp tube amp head that any guitarist would love!
- Boss Katana Artist MkII – the runner up.
- Fender ’65 Princeton Reverb – great choice for someone considering a Fender amplifier.
- Orange OR15H 15-watt Tube Head – Excellent lower wattage option.
- Marshall DSL40CR – great for gigging guitar players.
- Peavey 6505 – perfect for metal players.
- Fender Hot Rod Deluxe IV – sweet blues guitar tone.
- Vox AC15C2 – great choice for guitar players that like it clean.
- Randall EOD88 Tube Amp Head – another top amp head recommenation.
- Line 6 DT25 – a nice modeling amp choice.
Below are our recommendations for the best guitar amplifiers under 1000:
- Quick Links To Our Best Guitar Amp Under $1000 Recommendations
- Our Guitar Amplifier Under 1000 Reviews
- PRS MT 15 Mark Tremonti (Best Tube Amp Head Under 1000)
- Boss Katana Artist MkII
- Fender ’65 Princeton Reverb (Best Fender Tube Amp Under 1000)
- Orange OR15H 15-watt Tube Head
- Marshall DSL40CR (Best Gigging Amp Under 1000)
- Peavey 6505 (Best Metal Amps Under 1000)
- Fender Hot Rod Deluxe IV
- Vox AC15C2 (Best Clean Tube Amp Under 1000)
- Randall EOD88 Tube Amp Head
- Line 6 DT25
- What To Expect With A Guitar Amp Under $1000
- Good Guitar Amps Under 1000 Conclusion
Our Guitar Amplifier Under 1000 Reviews
PRS MT 15 Mark Tremonti (Best Tube Amp Head Under 1000)
Besides its smaller size, this lunchbox-style amp head is truly equivalent to a number of larger amps. It has two channels with two individually voiced and completely independent channels and a number of other features not typically found in amps in this amplifier category. The PRS MT 15 is adequately versatile to be the ideal studio workhorse, especially paired along with the PRS MT 1 x 12 closed-back speaker cabinet; it is also adequately powerful to be used on stage with a 4 x 12 or 2 x 12 cabinet.
This amp is ranked at 15 watts of output; however, since its power amp unit features two 6L6 tubes, rather than the usual EL84 r 6V6 tubes used for the majority of compact amps, it delivers volume and tone levels that can compete with a number of full-sized 50-watt heads. There are also 6 JJ EC83S preamp tubes designed to deliver remarkable amounts of gain which go far beyond rival lunch box amps.
The key to this amp is its 6L6 tubes and precisely dialed-in circuit which delivers punchy percussive guitar attack, crisp pick articulation and remarkable bass, which will cause your trousers leg to tremble, when thee amp is played via a large speaker cabinet.
- Clean Volume Flexibility.
- Intuitive Controls and Smart Layout.
- pricey for some, but still a great buy for what you get.
Check out the full PRS MT 15 Mark Tremoni amp review as well.
Boss Katana Artist MkII
This amp delivers powerful 100-watt combo that is sufficiently loud for any gig. It is specifically designed to handle the tonal needs of a loud gigging amplifier. It also offers everything needed in a single package with recording solution built in and top-quality guitar effects.
Ever since its release, The Katana Artist has been a massive hit for the company. This is because it offers players impressive effects and tones at an affordable price and in a ‘giggable’ guitar package. Despite earlier success, the company has not sat on their laurels. Instead, they have been looking to improve their product, having meetings with players to talk about what could be enhanced to make the am even better; the MkII is the resulting best product.
Similar to its predecessors, this all solid-state amplifier debunks the concept that tube amps are the best out there. This powerful 100-watt combo is sufficiently loud for any gig and it is designed to handle the tonal needs of a loud gigging amp while delivering everything needed in a single package with recording solution built-in and top-quality guitar effects.
- Incredible price for the amount of quality.
- Decent clean tone.
- Solid reverb and delay effects.
- Too much treble, not enough bass.
Fender ’65 Princeton Reverb (Best Fender Tube Amp Under 1000)
This amp is a revamp version of a legend. The decision made by Fender to do this has proven to be a remarkable thing for the guitar amp industry. Another impressive decision was to keep everything pretty much the way it was. Relating to controls, this is a relatively simple setup. Two instrument inputs, reverb controls, a modest two-band EQ and a volume knob are included. Nothing complicated at all.
The core of this amp is its complement of vacuum tubes. There are three 12AX7s, two 6V6 tubes, a single 5AR4 rectifier tube and a single 12AT7. Power output overall is ranked at 15 watts at eight Ohms. This single channel amp is equipped with what is among of the most amazing cleans you will ever have the pleasure of hearing.
It delivers a raspy dirt that has long ago become the symbol of classic rock. When paired with guitar effects pedals, the reverb plays extremely well. It only produces 15 Watts, so it might not be the most ideal for gigs in bigger venues but it is remarkable in a recording studio.
- Beautiful clean tones.
- Great for bluesy sounds.
- Only a 15 watt amp, so it’s perfect for your small room.
- It does not have an effects loop.
Orange OR15H 15-watt Tube Head
This powerful portable head stands out in both looks and sounds. It is all tube and can be operated at 7 or 15 watts; it is designed to deliver the ideal amount of drive you want regardless of where you are playing. Its ‘Pics Only’ graphic provides that classic 1970s orange look which make your dials smile. The vintage flavor of this best amp is also reflected in its ‘boutique’ voicing. This makes it distinct from the other lower wattage valve versions in the Terror Series.
The OR15H is as much about great tone as it is about ‘feel.’ This is designed to encourage players to get themselves reacquainted with the classic skill of ‘riding the volume’ control. The amp is always impressive regardless of the setting of the Gain control and even the most discerning players will find that there is always adequate range on tap. This compact head comes complete with a valve buffered effects loop; it is ideal for use in the club, in the studio and at home.
For those who enjoy their pedals, the low-impedance, fully-buffered loop enables any number of cables and guitar effects to be patched in between the input and output sections, without tone being sacrificed. This attention to detail indicates that your pedal arsenal will deliver peak performance.
- 7 or 15 watts of power (selectable).
- Classic tone
- Some people say it sounds “thin” or “tinny”. The sound is not very loud and may need to be turned up.
Marshall DSL40CR (Best Gigging Amp Under 1000)
This beautiful and powerful amp is designed to produce that classic and pleasing Marshall tone. The fully tube-powered amp is able to keep up in the studio and with the brashest bands on stage. The Marshall DSL40CR has 40-watts of tube power and everything comes pouring through a 12-inch speaker classically designed.
It can help you in recreating any sound. Its tone boasts so much strength and depth that any effect you desire to run through it will be genuine and powerful. There are 4 preamp tubes on a dual-channel panel that will deliver the level of personality and diversity you need to stand out.
The controls are placed right on the front panel. There are the classic bass, mid and treble knobs and a resonance and presence control. The additional knobs allow you to further crank it up when you want to really impress your listeners.
There are two channels that can be used in high and low power modes. Its classic gain channel delivers smooth distortions to the desired level. The Ultra gain channel mode is designed for when you want to blow out the windows. Either setting provides impressive guitar tonal quality and jump.
- Good sound quality.
- Has a 12 inch speaker that has the capacity to produce clean sound as well as distortion.
- Included footswitch is useful for changing channels and controlling effects.
- Lacks some of the features of higher priced amps.
Peavey 6505 (Best Metal Amps Under 1000)
The Peavey 6505 delivers crushing high-gain sounds and has a lot of power to spare. It also has a unique texture and tone, one that can be immediately noticed whether live or in a recording. This 120-watt head utilizes five 12AX7 tubes in its preamp section and four 6L6 units handle the power stage.
The tube quality is pretty remarkable and the channel selection is taken care of by the footswitch. The FX loop has 16, 8 and 4 ohm compatibility. It doesn’t have many flashy features but its core impressive performance is definitely worth the cost.
The type of distortion offered by Peavey 6505 is relatively unique in comparison to other tube amps. It has impressive Gain and its 6L6 valves produce a spicy texture. It is also very reliable and durable. They can take much guitar tone and handling abuse and keep ticking.
The defining features of this amp are its pre and post gain knobs for both channels. A three-band EQ is in the center of these controls. There is also a presence knob and a resonance knob. The bright and crunch buttons put an extra touch on the guitar tone profile. Generally, the controls provide a wider range of options and are fairly intuitive.
- This amp is an all-rounder, great for rock and metal.
- Very versatile.
- All tube powered with awesome tube overtones.
- It doesn’t come with a footswitch (you will need one to really get the most out of this amp).
Fender Hot Rod Deluxe IV
This amp is made with pine wood and has a sturdy construction, while at the same time being beautiful and having versatility for multiple genres. It has three channels that allow you to discover a remarkable array of tones. Adding the refined spring reverb delivers a richer and smoother tone even at max. Its weighs 45 pounds and its chassis measures in at 18.75 × 23.5 × 10.5-inches. It is a tad heavy but can be comfortably carried around the house and the stage.
Essentially, this is an all-tube, 40-watt amplifier with a single 12-inch speaker that is renowned for its fat/thick lows, relaxed mids and sleek highs. Forty watts may look like nothing much; however this amp is more powerful than a solid-state, 100-watt amp and has comfortably filled larger venues with exceptional clarity, quality and guitar warmth.
Normal, Drive and More Drive are the three available channels, which is kinda cheesy but the controls on the More Drive are not the same. This means the distortion levels of the Drive channel will have to be adjusted. There are also three-band EQ settings and the tone can be shaped in a very nice way with them.
- An outstanding tube amp sound that is super fat and powerful
- The Fender Hot Rod Deluxe IV also comes equipped with three channels: clean, normal, and drive and the ability to easily switch from one to each of them
- It doesn’t come with built in effects that are found in other more expensive amps such as echo. It does offer reverb through.
Vox AC15C2 (Best Clean Tube Amp Under 1000)
This amp offers impressive tonal quality, while delivering a vintage sound that is loaded with pedigree. The first group of knobs on the AC15C2 is labeled master and these include tone cut and master volume knobs. Next is your tremolo section with depth and speed controls, which are followed by a reverb section with its level knob. The top boost cluster includes volume, treble and bass knobs. There are also the clean or normal channel volume controls and there are two inputs, one for the regular channel and the other for top boost. Additionally, an impedance select switch is on the back.
That C2 designation of the amp indicates two things; it is a customized version of the AC15 and there are two 12-inch speakers included. Its 15-watt output is sent to the speakers by way of the 2 EL84 tubes located in the power stage and the three 12AX7 tubes found in the preamp stage.
This amp has quite an organic overdrive and impressive cleans, which is largely due to its additional 12-inch Celestion. In addition to it renowned tone profile, a tremendously natural sounding reverb has been included along with a guitar tremolo effect.
- It’s a Vox amp, which will make it a great choice for many people as Vox amps are known for their sound that sounds more vintage-y than most other amps on the market.
- It has 2 channels with a tremolo and chorus effect that you can use on either channel, meaning you have your choice of two different sounds.
- It doesn’t have as many features as other amps on the market.
Randall EOD88 Tube Amp Head
This old school, unapologetic tube amp head is inspired by the legendary Ozzy Osbourne. The acronym EOD means ‘Element of Doom’ and the front panel has a skull on it to highlight that it is all about heavy metal guitar.
The EOD88 is definitely eye-catching in its limited-edition bold red casing. Its single-channel tube amp head is equipped with 2 KT88 tubes that delivers 88 watts of power. Its built-in switchable fuzz circuit represents the spirit of heavy metal and the footswitch, which is included in the cost, can be used to change the fuzz circuit.
Available are 3 switchable gain modes, with each being a tad angrier than the last; these can be controlled by the footswitch as well. The overall weight of the EOD88 is approximately 35 pounds, which is a substantial weight for a best little amp head.
On the front panel, there are the fuzz and gain controls that operate in conjunction with the footswitch. There is also a simple EQ section that has bass, treble and mids knobs along with its depth and presence controls. The last two knobs make the tone a little more spacious. There is also a master volume knob designed for you to really crank up the amp.
- Versatile – good for a variety of genres
- Solid build quality.
Line 6 DT25
If your tone is your thing, this portable all tube guitar combo amplifier is definitely for you. This 25W/10W electric guitar amplifier delivers 4 impressive amp voicings and extraordinary versatility on which you can build your ideal tone. The combination of HD modeling and configurable analog components enable the amp to function as a four-in-one device.
At a flick of a switch, this remarkable amp has the capacity to deliver shimmering Fender-like clean tones, modern high gain guitar tones, classic Vox chime and Meaty Marshall crunch. Power tube mode, selectable operating class and four Voicings make it possible to produce your own highly-customized originals or dial in classic vintage tones; each of them has tactile touch responsiveness and boutique tone.
This tone monster amp gets straight to the point. In essence, the LINE 6 DT25 amp is a modest, two-channel, remarkable sounding valve amp that is equipped with a streamlined front panel. Pretty much any guitarist can pull a tone that is both inspirational and powerful.
- Versatile amp modeling–cuts through any mix.
- Excellent guitar sounds on most models.
- Plenty of effects, amps, and cabs to choose from.
- Built in tuner and metronome for quick setup.
- No footswitch included for controlling on the fly. You’ll have to invest if you want one.
What To Expect With A Guitar Amp Under $1000
Are you planning on buying a new guitar amplifier and have $1000 to spend. There are a number of features you should be looking for in an amp to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck.
Make Sure It Has Enough Watts To Cover A Gig
Too many guitarists and bassists are buying amps that only have 50 watts or less of power. This is a terrible mistake because it means they’ll be unable to play at a gig, unless they plan on playing onstage through their PA system (which is impractical). Without enough power, the amplifier will only be loud enough for practice and/or rehearsals (not a concert venue). Don’t make this mistake if you’re planning to play in a band.
Make Sure It Has Good Clean And Overdrive Channels
Guitar amplifiers come with two main channels: a clean channel and an overdrive or distortion channel. If the amp only has one channel, it’s likely this feature won’t be available. But if you’re planning to play in many different styles of music, you’ll need clean and overdrive channels for both your lead playing and rhythm playing needs.
Make Sure A Footswitch Was Included
A footswitch is used to change channels on your amplifier as you’re playing a song. Make sure one was included with the amp if you plan to play in a band and it’s likely you’ll be changing channels often.
Make Sure It Has Reverb, Tremolo And An Effects Loop
Reverb adds depth and warmth to your guitar or bass. Tremolo adds a pulsating effect that gives a sense of movement to the music. An effects loop allows you to connect an equalizer, a wah pedal or other effects in between the preamp and power amp in the amplifier. If one of these features isn’t present on your guitar amp, you’ll need to either add it later with pedals (which is expensive) or without pedals (which costs nothing).
Make Sure There Are 2 Channels, Each With Their Own Volume And Tone Control
Many guitar amplifiers have one channel with 2 knobs (volume and tone). This means you can only control each channel together. If you need more control over your channels, look for a model that has separate volume and tone controls for each channel.
Good Guitar Amps Under 1000 Conclusion
The recommended models are among the top guitar amp under 1000. Whatever you intend to do with it, there are a number of options available in this price range. However, it is important to carefully choose the best amp for you because a thousand dollars is not exactly chump change.
There will never be a definitive answer to what is the best amp under 1000 because sound is extremely subjective. The preference is truly left to the guitar player and while each category of amp has its own pitfalls and merits, the decision is left up to you.