This is my review of the Best Mini Guitar Amp 2021.
I’ve played dozens of mini guitar amps over the years. The tiny belt buckle models right through to the ear-bleeding vibrating hissing units of death.
After carefully trawling through the best of today’s alternatives, I’ve decided to find you the best mini guitar amps on the market today.
My clear winner is the VOX Mini3 G2.
The Vox mini3 G2 delivers a range of pre-built amp tones for you to play with. Options include classic vintage, to a modern high-gain, and a rare boutique range of sounds. That’s not it, you also get four delay and reverb effects. There’s so much fun to be had here.
Whether you’re a home player or busking in the high street, the vox mini is suited to all situations.
I’ve considered all skill levels, budgets, quality of amp in all practice scenarios. Read on to see which mini guitar amp i have for you:
The 12 Mini Guitar Amps We Loved
- Fender MD20 Mini Deluxe Guitar Combo Amplifier
- VOX AP2AC amPlug 2 AC30 Guitar/Bass Headphone Amplifier
- Marshall MS2 Battery-Powered Micro Guitar Amplifier
- Fender Mini 57 Twin-amp
- Blackstar FLY 3, 3-Watt Mini Guitar Combo Amplifier
- Orange Amplification Crush Mini 3-Watt Battery Powered
- Fender Frontman 10G Electric Guitar Amplifier
- Boss Katana Mini Battery Powered Guitar Amplifier
- Roland MICRO CUBE GX Guitar Amplifier
- Vox Electric Guitar Mini Amplifier SuperBeetle 25w
- Fishman Loudbox Mini Bluetooth 60-Watt Acoustic Guitar
- VOX Mini 3 G2 Battery Powered Modeling Amp, 3W,
We do not recommend any of the following mini amps for rehearsals with a ‘band’. These are for recording, home use, guitar lessons or the acoustic/singer live. A drummer would most certainly be a great deal louder than any of these little fellas. Unless you’re brave enough to tell the drummer he’s too loud!
The 12 Best Mini Guitar Amps
Is Perfect For: A traveling companion or a student taking lessons
Ah, that classic Fender Deluxe Reverb look. Fender makes some of (if not the) best mini amps on the market. The MD20 is possibly the smallest member of the family but still made with all the quality standards you’d expect from the manufacturing heavyweight Fender.
The outstanding amount of versatility to be had from the MD20 is vast. You can literally play any genre of music with this bad boy.
It features a ‘drive controller’ knob for that extra crunch or fuzzy breakup tones. Unlike a lot of mini practice amps, this beast will really give you some serious punch and sustain. A compact and hard as nails build.
A great option for the serious guitar player who appreciates tone and wants longevity. A real safe choice if your want to practice at quieter volumes, and don’t fancy getting arrested (again).
A big seller in the practice amp department. You can’t go wrong with a Fender
Fender MD20 Features:
- 1-watt output
- Single 8 ohm 2″ speaker
- 9v AC in
- Headphone out
- Authentic contemporary styling
- Dedicated tone, volume, and gain controls
- 1/4″ headphone jack and 9V adapter jack
- Weight 7 ounces
- Dimensions 11.42 x 7.48 x 3.54 inches
Would Suit The: Travelling guitarist who doesn’t have the room to carry a practice amp.
Unfortunately, there are times where shredding some gnarly riffs at full blast may not be appropriate. Fortunately, Vox has produced a nifty little headphone amp!
These are great for players that just can’t put their instrument down when others within earshot might wish they could!
Here’s the amazing bit:
The VOX AP2AC isn’t a dull amplified version of what’s coming out of your guitar. There is a Tone, Gain, and Volume switch. Which is amazing considering the size of this little fella. Simply plug it into your guitar and pop your headphones in.
An Aux input is supplied if you want to go through a small amp. The effects onboard are outrageously good for the capacity of this ‘amp’! Chorus, Delay, and Reverb are the real deal. The best effect is the tremolo that layers on top of the other sounds. Truly an enjoyable gadget that fills a hole in the market perfectly.
A real steal for the price and a great accessory for the guitarist or bass player. A top seller and a super portable ‘guitar amp’. Simply chuck it in your pocket. This has to be the best pocket amp ever?
Vox Ampeg Features:
- Weight 1.41 oz
- Dimensions 3.39 x 3.15 x 1.22 inches (WxDxH)
- Series amPlug 2
- 3 Effects (Chorus, Delay, Reverb)
- Guitar Types w/ Multi-Effect Functionality
- Rhythm Function Added to the Bass Type
- Foldable Plug Mechanism Rotates 180 degrees
- Auto Power-Off Function
- Small, Compact Design
- 11 hr Battery Life FX Rhythm On, 17 hr Batter Life FX Rhythm Off
- 2 x AAA Batteries Not Included
- AC30 – provides the AC30 top boost sound
- Classic Rock – delivers the classic crunch of a UK-made 100W amp
- Metal – gives you the extreme high-gain sound of a U.S.-made amp
- Bass – designed specifically for low frequencies, offering a wide-range response
- Clean – the ideal choice for fat, boutique inspired clean sounds
- Blues – the authentic, crunchy blues tone of a cranked tweed amp
Would Suit The: First time player looking for a foot in the door and have some fun.
For a more balanced review, we’ve decided to consider all types of ‘mini’ guitar amp. This tiny Marshall ms 2 mini amp deserves a mention as it serves a purpose as the most portable amp around.
In basic terms, the marshall ms 2 is a ‘micro amp’, or a battery-powered amp. Although this little baby can be plugged into the mains.
This was the first-ever amp I owned. You can attach it to your belt strap and walk around your bedroom pretending to be Dave Grohl. I bet Dave Grohl does exactly that in his bedroom!
Take this Marshall MS2 for what it is. A low-cost, decent quality, portable amp for a guitar fan looking to make some noise at the start of their journey. The most important thing is to have fun in the beginning.
It’s worth knowing these MS2s kick out a bit of a racket, but that’s what we’re buying it for, right?
The fun value: I give this 99/100 (it loses -1% for having to change the battery every so often). It serves a purpose to all those wanna-be rock gods. A perfect way to get any music fan interested in learning the electric guitar.
Make some noise, have some fun, get yourself a Marshall ms 2.
Marshall MS 2 Features:
- 1 watt of output for truly portable practice
- Channel switching
- Volume and Tone controls
- Headphone/Output jack
- Headphone jack doubles as a preamp out
- Small and lightweight – take it anywhere- best pocket amp
- Weight: 0.34 kg / 1 lbs
- Width: 110 mm / 4.3″
- Height: 140 mm / 5.5″
- Depth: 60 mm / 2.4″
Perfect For: A Gift For The Fender Addict
At first glance, the Fender Mini Twin amp looks like something Keith Richards would play. It’s a real beauty to look at.
Fender has done a great job with the aesthetics on this tiny practice amp. A wooden made unit with a Tweed grill makes you wanna play some Delta Blues.
The first real feature I should mention is the 2×2 speaker configuration. This gives the player more depth than any other amp around the same price tag.
So, the Mini 57 actually has two speakers, which is a fantastic benefit in such a small package. The quality of tone with an amp utilizing two speakers will always be superior to one.
When boosting the gain volume you actually receive some dirty, gritty, spikey tones. A growl sweetly saturated crush. This will make the blues enthusiasts out there very happy. The clear tones are decent, in the style of its Dad, the Fender Blues Deluxe.
A superb combination of features, performance, and price. This should be right up there in your thoughts if you have a smaller budget to play with, and you’re already a Fender fan.
Fender Mini 57 Features:
- Weight 1.1 pounds
- Dimensions 11.42 x 7.48 x 3.54 inches
- Batteries 1x 9V batteries required.
- Color Name: Tweed
- Output Wattage 1
Suited Best For: The Man Cave or bedroom guitarist
When it comes to great tones at lower, more discrete volumes, the Blackstar Fly 3 mini is ideal.
The standout feature is the patent ‘Infinite Shape Feature’. It gives you the power to decide on matching other classic amp tones by dialing in and creating via the ISF. This gives you the scope to discover your own tones. This is controlled easily, with the EQ knob.
You have two choices of channels. Clean and overdrive. The delay knob is also pretty lush and worth just adding a sprinkle to your playing. Slightly adjusting the delay level along with the EQ gives you many avenues of tones to discover. Unlike the standard mini amp where you’re kinda stuck in a sandbox of the manufacturer’s choice.
With two stereo mini-jack inputs, you’re able to connect your laptop, smartphone etc to jam along with tracks. This is a huge benefit for beginners learning their trade.
It’s worth noting, the Blackstar FLY takes 6 AA batteries. Blackstar claims at lower volumes you can receive 50 hours of playtime. Errr, I’m very much doubtful of that. Unless you’re literally playing at pin-drop volume. So at full blast, you only get 4 hours. That’s a massive gap.
My advice would be to get rechargeable batteries (see below). Oh, by the way, you can also plug this baby in if you’re at home.
All in all, I love this amp. A truly versatile and silky smooth practice amp. Blackstar produces some cracking amps further up the scale, so you’re guaranteed some great little tones with the Blackstar FLY 3.
Blackstar Fly 3 Features:
- Technology Type Analogue
- Wattage 3
- Inputs Guitar Input, MP3/Line Input
- Channels 2 – Clean, Overdrive
- Speaker Size 3
- Weight 0.9KG
- Dimensions (Width x Height x Depth) 170 x 126 x 102 (mm)
Best Suited For: The already Orange fanatic and the portable practice guitarist.
The instantly recognizable orange vinyl and woven grille. Orange has many loyal followers up and down the amp chain. They provide players with the iconic Orange sounds of gentle crunch to full-on Guns N Roses destruction.
A new addition to the Orange crush mini is the ‘shape’ feature. This allows you to dial in loads more tones and sounds. This alone will keep you interested for months. Essentially this is a mid-tone control or EQ. Some lead players love a lot of mids, so turning it all the way to left you’re given a whole lotta mids over a more rounded scoped tone.
The crush comes with a very basic selection of EQ. The panel from left to right: Input jack, gain knob, shape feature, volume, and headphone jack. If all you’re looking to do is plug in and rehearse rock music, this is for you.
You might notice there isn’t a power button! Don’t fret (sorry!), simply plug your guitar jack in and that completes the circuit adding power to the amp.
Orange is a very popular beginner choice of amp. If you’ve experienced the classic Orange tones before, you’ll be all over this. At such a friendly price you can’t ignore a proven amp like the Orange Mini Crush.
Orange Mini Crush Features:
- Built-In tuner
- 3-watt battery-powered amp for Orange tone on the go!
- Versatile, simple controls
- Speaker output
- Aux-in, headphone jack
- Power supply not included
- Weight 1.99 lbs.
- Dimensions 5.9 x 5.7 x 3.26 inches (WxHxD)
Suited To: The guitarist looking for a more superior sound at louder levels
Buying anything Fender in my book generally means you won’t face the issue of it falling apart.
The Fender Frontman is built for beginners who are looking for an affordable amp with ‘the Fender tone’
This sturdy combo amp is a powerful little unit. I had one of these whilst I was moving house about 5 years back. They are so much louder than I thought. Definitely good enough to blast out in the house, but also can be turned way down without sacrificing any tone loss.
With the overdrive switch, you are invited to get some sticky crunch or aggressive gain.
The main feature in my opinion is the authentic Fender clean tone. I’ve had 25 years of various Fender amps and the Frontman clean channel is exactly that. If you love the clean Fender sound, this is the lowest price amp where you’ll receive it.
Once again you are supplied with an aux input to jam along with your phone or laptop.
Unlike a lot of the mini amps around today, the Fender Frontman can maintain its quality tone at high volume. A lot of mini amps cannot deal with louder volumes and spew out a mass of distorted hiss and muddy awfulness.
This amp would suit somebody who likes a bit more volume and appreciates the Fender tone.
Oh, did I mention it is really loud?
Fender Frontman Features:
- 10 Watts
- 1-6″ Fender Special Design Speaker
- Controls: Gain, Over-Drive Select Switch, Volume, Treble, Bass
- Other Features: 1/4″ Instrument Input, 2-Band EQ, 1/8″ Auxiliary Input Jack for Jam-Along with Media Player or CD, 1/8″ Headphone Output Jack for Silent Practice, Closed-Back Design for Heavier Bass Response
- Item Weight 8.5 pounds
- Product Dimensions 5.75 x 10.25 x 11 inches
Suited To: The Tonester, someone who cares about every inch of their tone
Boss is a recognized manufacturer for quality builds with a superabundance of features. They’ve been supplying us with superb equipment since the 1970s. They gave us some of the best synthesizers, keyboards, and drum machines as well as amps and effects processors.
The Boss Katana mini is 7 watts of power. You’re given an EQ display like a ‘standard sized’ amplifier. From left to right you have gain-volume-bass-middle-treble and a Delay time and level. Generally speaking, practice amps don’t give you the mid-range options, so this is a positive feature and will add so much to your overall tone.
Having the opportunity to have 3 different types of gain is great. You have the option for ‘brown, crunch, or clean’. The delay is another top-notch feature. Playing with the delay time and level knobs enables you to go from a small amount of shimmer to full-on Edge from U2. Hours of fun to be had.
There’s an aux port for the player who wants to jam along with your favorite song or a backing track.
It’s worth knowing, the power adapter has to be purchased separately but the amp comes with x4 AA batteries. Again, see my recommendation at the bottom of this article for trustworthy rechargeable batteries.
All in all Boss Katana is one of the best battery powered guitar amp
The Boss Katana mini is one of the best mini amps you can buy from a ‘value for money’ aspect. Fantastic Tonal quality with endless amounts of sounds to be discovered. Very simple to use and from a trustworthy brand in today’s market.
Boss Katana Mini Features:
- Rich, full sound that far exceeds other amps in its class
- Authentic multi-stage analog gain circuit and three-band analog tone stack
- Three versatile amp types: Brown, Crunch, and Clean
- Built-in tape-style delay for warm ambience
- Aux input for jamming with music from a smartphone
- Phones/recording output with cabinet voicing
- Runs on six AA-size batteries or optional AC adapter
- Item Weight 3.3 pounds
- Dimensions 4.21 x 2.68 x 3.66 inches
Best For: Just about every practice scenario
A big player in the small amp market for over 10 years now. Roland Micro Cube is possibly the most popular battery powered amp of all time.
The GX is an updated version of the old classic. Although the Cube still retains its huge sound and tiny tank-like appearance just like the legendary prototype.
The updates include some impressive additions including the i-cube link, a chromatic tuner, a memory function for saving your favorite settings.
A heavy octave feature has been added to the onboard effects section for thick, ultra-low tones. I Cube Link opens many new opportunities for practice and recording, providing a built-in audio interface for working with music apps.
The micro cube GX now has increased power supporting a 25 hour battery powered playing time. 8 superb Amp types to instantly dial into. A chorus, flanger, teremlo and mighty impressive heavy octave feature for big fat White Stripes riffs. Delay and reverb dials too.
Wow, they just made the old classic even better.
Roland Cube Features:
- Comes in a fetching white & red
- Power Output 3 W
- Speaker 12 cm (5 inches) x 1
- Power Supply AC adaptor
- Alkaline battery: Approximately 20 hours
- Dimensions 9-3/4 (W) x 6-13/16 (D) x 8-15/16 (H) inches
- Weight 2.7 kg/6 lbs
Most suited to: The British Rock fan of the 60s
Wait, this looks like a Vox stack! Just to clarify, it’s a two-foot-tall mini amp. But it’s more than loud enough for your rock requirements.
Vox’s beautifully traditional sparkle and chime in a small package. If you’re looking for that British 60s twang with a bit of bite, you’ll be amazed at how clear this two-foot tower sounds.
There’s not much in the way of gain, mostly a gritty breakup tone. So if you’re looking to smash out some AC/DC riffs or some fresh metal chugging, I wouldn’t be purchasing this.
The reverb is one of the best features on board. Reminds me of The Beatles during the Cavern days. It’s not overpowering so it won’t be intruding on the rest of your sound.
The Tremolo is notably clear cut, it adds that something the competitors cannot compete with around this price. You’ll receive an all-new analog NuTube circuitry for authentic tube tone.
If you’re looking for the fresh shimmering British tone from the 60s, this superb practice amp is your next toy.
Vox Superbeetle Features:
- Amplifier Type Solid State
- Wattage (Built-in/Handling Capacity) 25w
- Speaker Size 10″
- Weight 19.18 lbs
- Dimensions 12.7 x 7.09 x 23.5 inches (WxDxH)
- Iconic design inherited from the classic stacks of the British Invasion
- Traditional VOX AC tones, powered by Nutube, with a maximum output of 50W (at 40)
- An open-backed cabinet equipped with one 10-inch Celestion speaker
- On-board digital reverb & NuTube driven tremolo
- Built-in digital reverb that simulates a spring reverb
- Speaker output for pairing with a variety of cabinets
- Headphone/Line output for practice or recording
- Serious sound that exceeds its appearance
Best suited to: Acoustic Performer or enthusiast searching for that something special
As I’m trying to cover all bases of practice amp, I thought it’d be good to add a suitable acoustic guitar mini amp for the live performer.
The Fishman combo amp is an outstanding choice for any level of acoustic guitar player.
The Layout is super silky and sophisticated. A unique brown and cream finish that will fit in perfectly with your home decor. I realize that’s a huge consideration these days for some people! It’s also the best portable guitar amp with mic input.
This Fishman 60 watt, two-channel Preamp and controls use Digital reverb-Two stage chorus and a Phase switch. The Phase switch is ideal for the live guitarist. It’s a process that inverts the electrical signal from your guitar. This really helps reduce the amplifier speakers feeding back to the guitar.
The Fishman has a wireless Bluetooth option. This is perfect for a singer/guitarist, or if you require micing up another instrument. That’s a benefit you won’t find anywhere else on my mini amp round-up.
To say the reverb and chorus effects are ‘good’ on this amp would be an understatement. A genuinely superb array of onboard effects to be had. This doesn’t by any means get in the way of the overall sound and quality.
Ladies and Gentleman the superb Fishman Loudbox
Fishman Loudbox Features:
- Amp Type Solid State
- Channels 2
- Watts 60
- Speaker Configuration 1 x 6.5″ and 1″ Tweeter
- Speaker(s) 6.5″ Woofer 1″ Soft Dome Tweeter
- EQ Three-Band
- Inputs 2 x Dual 1/4″ XLR Inputs, 1 x 1/4″ Aux Input, 1 x 1/8″ Aux Input
- Outputs 1 x D.I. Output
- Digital FX Yes
- Line Out Yes
- Reverb Yes
- Weight 21.2 lbs.
- Dimensions 12 x 13.7 x 9.7 inches (WxHxD)
Best Mini Guitar Amp Winner
The Vox Mini 3 is a great resource for the busker. You can sound fantastic in public and it’s dynamic enough to reach your audience on the high street.
With a simple layout, you’re given more tone options than you can shake a stick at. The control knob designs are spacious and clear. With classy bright creamy knobs, you won’t be straining your eyes and struggling to find the correct mode.
With 10, yes 10 choices of realistic amp models to choose from, you’re absolutely spoiled for choice (+1 Line channel=11 in total).
From left to right you have a clean channel (BTQ), this is a practical mode to find your standard shiny electric guitar sound. Next, you have the option to dial straight into 10 sounds from classic vintage, modern high-gain, and rare boutique amps.
The tone menu is as follows: Black 2×12, Tweed 4×10, AC15, AC30TB, UK 70s,80s & 90s, Cali Metal, and US Higain. The Line option is last. Line in is ideal for acoustic guitar, keyboards, drum machines, or even a vocal.
Your fun doesn’t end there. With more onboard effects available with the four delays and reverbs give you an outstanding range of possibilities. This includes a compressor as well as a chorus, flanger, and tremolo.
The battery can apparently survive up to 10 hours, but I’m not so sure. If you’re playing in an outdoor environment where you need a bit of volume. I guess you’d be getting around 7 hours of battery life. The Mini3 does come with a power supply anyhow.
Still, in comparison to the rest of the amps in the review, the Vox mini g3 is the best battery powered guitar amp
A superbly priced mini amp with multiple uses. The pre-set built-in amp effects are so much more superior in my eyes (ears!) than the Roland Cube. It was very close, especially considering the Cube is the crowd favorite.
A must-have for the street busker or someone who just wants a bit of fun. After all, that’s what it’s all about eh?
Extremely easy to use so the Vox mini should appeal to everybody of all skill levels.
Vox Mini3 G2 Features
- (W x D x H): 262 x 174 x 223mm/ 10.32″ x 6.85″ x 8.78″
- Weight 6.61 lbs. (Excluding Batteries)
- Eleven amp models range from high-gain to pristine clean types, supporting a variety of instruments
- The proprietary VOX “Bassilator” circuit delivers a heavy sound with ultra-low frequencies
- Enhanced quality effects such as: compressor, chorus, flanger, tremolo, delay and reverb
- Dual power options; use the included AC adaptor, or six AA batteries for up to 10 hours enjoyment
- AUX input jack – connect your MP3 player or other audio source and jam along