Top positive review
93 people found this helpful
Amazing Sound, Amazing Quality, Amazing Functionality from a small package
on September 20, 2013
I copied this from my other post. Keep a couple of things in mind. Their is no amp hiss or noise when on battery, and I keep all my amps plugged in to a power conditioner. So your home electricity noise might affect how well yours works. I also know this is a long read, but I have been burned by enough amps that I was hesitant on this purchase. Especially after multiple amps I basically lost money on looking for this kind of thing.
Ok guys, so I decided to pick up another amp. criteria were simple (kind of). I already have great amps for at home. But this amp had to be low enough volume for my son and my godson to play around on, it had to have decent set of features, it had to portable, and it had to accommodate both acoustic and electric guitars. So a versatile amp with low volume sound that was unsurpassed for cheap. I know that puts big limits but Yamaha is excellent at audio engineering. basically a battery powered go anywhere. So after talking with a couple people here, and setting my price limit fairly low, I went and checked out the Yamaha THR10C. I know they have 5 models, so here is the break down. THR10 - Original Release Basic Catch All 10 watt, THR5 - 5 watt version, TRH10X - Heavy Metal Version, THR10C - Classic Blues Version, THR5A - Acoustic Guitar Version. Ive owned the marshall battery powered, the roland micro cube, the orange battery powered amps. all bedroom style portable amps. Well I must say I am really impressed with this amp. I picked mine up from guitar center for 160$ out the door (normally retail is 300$). A little negotiating and that I have good repoire with them helped a lot.
What you get: 10 watt amp with 8 presets and 5 empty slots, usb cable, audio in cable (from cell phone or computer or such). I have a good 8 or so effects already on, and combinations their of. Two things that were a plus... One is the line in has its own volume control. So the guitar volume, and line in volume are separated. Pretty nice if you feel the song is over powering just a tad and need to tweek that. The other thing is the acoustic modeling is very impressive. Very solid. In fact I tried it out on a semi hollow, lp, acoustic, and 12 string. When I was in the acoustic room the amp was sitting under me and really not visible. Oh the store was kind enough to put batteries in it, so I didn't have to worry about finding plugs (great thing too, I could jump from place to place and it functioned flawless). A number of people came up with the comment "that fishman really sounds impressive". Well sitting in front of me was a fishman artist series, but I was plugged in to the Yamaha, so I pointed it out, and showed them how I was switching from condenser mic setting to acoustic setting. And at 1/3 the size, and 1/6th the "wattage" it surprised a lot of people just how full the sound was. A lot of people were giving great comments, and one guy even wanted to buy it, but I already had my hands on it. It has incredible tone when using it with the 12 string as well.
Sound output wise. Its 10 watts. But if you don't know how that works heres a quick lesson. Sounds is not linear like you would think on the controls. Sound is logarithmic. So if you want to double the sound of a 10 watt you need 100 watts for twice the sound. 1000 watts to double the sound of a 100 watt amp. So the difference between a 10 watt and the 60 watt fishman? well its about a .6 increase in volume. so don't get caught up in watts over quality. And don't let this guy fool you. Its loud, I had a guy playing on a fender mustang II and I was able to play loud enough to compete over him. Which if you know how watts work a 10 watt amp vs a 40 watt amp is only a .4 increase, but when you add quality it nulls that down. At low volume you don't have the problems you have with other amps. I didn't hear any muddiness, any loss of any real quality, no rubber band effect, and the levels stayed about even. You didn't lose low end and get stuck with only middle tones like a lot of amps I have played do. When I turned the volume down on acoustic or electric the entire range lowered not just one end.
Software is pretty cool. You can control everything and even do advanced effects mixing from a very simple interface. The software will even remove the guitar from the song you are playing, which when the speaker is usb in to the computer it acts like the computers speakers. So anything you play, youtube, mp3, anything gets output through the amp. which has its own output volume. so your not stuck with just the master. I can have my guitar cranked way up, and the output volume at say 2/10. which is really really awesome. and the interface is smart. If you adjust something on the interface the knob doesn't move, but the second you adjust it physically on the amp, the interface goes with the input from the amp. and you have tons of leverage on sound. While this is the C model which stands for classic blues, it comes with the 8 models built in, and 24 models on the software. Including 3 for a bass guitar, and 3 for acoustic. strumming acoustic, flatpicking acoustic, and fingerpicking acoustic. In the software you have a total of 100 models but 75 are empty. You can import, create your own do whatever you want, but on the amp stored you only have 5 custom slots, kind of sucks wish it had more. and the sound output from the usb or aux in is stereo, very crisp clean loud stereo. works great for playing a (mp3,youtube,even dvd) song, and eliminating the guitar out of it, and running your own guitar in (which it will record for you, so its a full on recording interface). Which I might add is nice, you have an acoustic condenser mic, an acoustic pickup, and electric pickup recording interface all in one. for less than 200 dollars with software. Just like any other amp the gain and master work like a preamp and master. gain for preamp and master for well master. Its built after a 6L6 amp. Oh and you have cabinet selection too I might add. They are British Blues 2x12, Boutique 2x12, Cali 1x12, American 1x12, Boutique 1x12, and Yamaha 2x12. The built in amps are Deluxe (fender blues deluxe), Class A (Country or Southern Blues), US Blues, British Blues, Mini (Mini amp solid state circuit sound), Bass (like a Bassman Fender), ACO (acoustic electric condenser mic), Flat (acoustic electric guitar style amp, no effects, no mixing, what goes in comes out as pure guitar). The flat also works great on semi hollow and electrics if you want just pure clean tone. Effects Chorus, Flanger, Phaser, Tremolo, Delay, Reverb, Chompressor, Gate, Tape Echo.
It does work on my tablet and computer. I have used it with both usb and the aux out from the tablet to play music. It is very light and easy to carry around. It was really fun to run this amp from the tablet on batteries. I was able to outside with my tablet playing the backing track, the usb interface so I could make adjustments, and my guitar. I have a feeling hunting season is going to be a bit more fun this year with these portable capabilities. Its about the size of a 12 pack soda box. Built out of solid medal and powder coated which is nice. For 200$ and after spending hours and hours not much else really compares. You get an amp with settings for both electric and acoustic guitars. You have a computer interface so you can control it via a computer or via the amp. This acts a very accurate computer interface for recording. You can control the volume the guitar and aux in separate. The software will remove the guitar from a song so you can play in its place. When you start up the software it asks what your doing (acoustic, clean electric, distorted electric, piano, or stereo acoustic guitar) all are + vocals, so you can record guitar and vocal together. It will also do music scoring and audio production so you can edit songs you recorded and really master the tone you want. Oh and it has a headphone jack so you can listen to yourself as you play, or not disturb other family members whichever you choose. Oh I must add the software did pickup the mic in both the tablet, and the laptop. So you don't need a mic. The built in mics on both aren't great, but they work.
I hope that helps, I must say I am really impressed with what Yamaha has done, and I have never really heard anyone complain about their Yamaha amp. This is the second one I have owned and as far as low volume playing, its very hard to beat for this price range. What its missing, Bluetooth (I mean really in this day and age it should be blue tooth controlled), and as someone else pointed out the ability to record from the aux in port. With todays technology this couldn't have been hard to add. The software used to change the amp settings is already a very simple program.
Incase anyone wanted to see, here is its size comparison. That's an asus transformer prime tablet docked in a keyboard, and a Gibson hummingbird pro. Its not much bigger than the tablet. Fits on a work desk, or a night stand beautifully, out of the way, but the sound can fill a large room no problem.