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Blackstar Amplification Artisan 30
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Blackstar Amplification Artisan 30
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lemmer007 lemmer007

« WOW what an amp! »

Published on 12/07/14 at 02:10
Value For Money : Excellent
Audience: Advanced Users
Hi,

After having owned it for several years, I think I'm qualified to write a review about this great amp. The review by Pucelle_Dabidjan pushed me to write a review of the Artisan 30, because I don't think his review is objective, having tested it in a store (at least that's what he wrote). In order to do that, I think you need to have used a product, at least, several months, in different situations, at home, for gigs, etc.

This amp has a magical side to it. The sensations and sound this amp provides are absolutely magical.

I use this amp to play from funk to rock.

The Artisan 30 is a rather heavy combo (75lbs), but it's a 2x12 (2x Celestion Vintage 30). Personally, I prefer 2x12 combos to 1x12 models, so it doesn't really matter, any combo will be heavy. :) To get this sound you need to make such compromises.

It's a 30 Watt amp with 4x EL84 and it has a switch to choose between 30 Watts or 10 Watts. But be careful: 10 Watts Class A is a lot. And to get a super crunch, remember you need to really crank up the volume. And that's where the Artisan 30 shines. From an amazing clean sound to an amazing crunch, it's all magical. :)

The amp has two independent channels with two separate inputs. Channel 1, one HI and LO input. Channel 2 also one HI and LO input. You can also combine the two channels and "jump" them. Which means connecting a cable between the LO input of channel 1 and the HI of channel 2 while you plug your guitar to the HI input of channel 1. Great sound, you will be surprised by the sound you get. :) The Artisan 30 has NO footswitch!!! Personally, I use a Lehle little dual. The Lehle gives me the possibility to choose between channel 1 or 2, but also to use both channels combined. Sweet! I have three different sounds at my feet.

It's possible to play hard rock with this amp and pedals to drive the amp. Unfortunately, the amp has no effects loop, but that would've meant losing purity. The Artisan 30 works fine will all sorts of pedals, which surprised me.

The amp is very easy to dial in, it's very intuitive. It's impossible to get a bad sound with the Artisan 30.

It has its own character, to make yourself an idea it's a mix between a Vox AC30 and a Marshall Plexi.

The pros of the Artisan 30:

- Solid hand-made amp handwired point-to-point. The inside is really the work of a pro, it's really WOW. Great job and super reliable.
- The sound you get with the Artisan 30 is truly magical. From jazz to rock, really excellent. And the feeling you get when playing at quite reasonable volumes, WOW.
- The purity of the amp and the fact that it respects the character of the different guitars.
- It works really well with effects pedals.

The cons of the Artisan 30:

- Its 75lbs, which make it really heavy, although it's a reasonable weight for a 2x12 combo . I don't really mind, given the sound I get.

P.S.: If I someday decide to sell the Artisan 30 it would only be to return to a 4x12 cab setup. Given the case, I wouldn't hesitate to buy the Artisan 30H with its own cab. ;) But the 2x12 is more compact to transport, otherwise I would have to buy a new car LOL ;)

Don't hesitate getting in touch If you have any questions.
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