Blackstar Amplification HT Studio 20H
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Blackstar Amplification HT Studio 20H

HT Studio 20H, Tube Guitar Amp Head from Blackstar Amplification in the HT-Venue series.

GutsMiura 12/06/2013

Blackstar Amplification HT Studio 20H : GutsMiura's user review

5

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All-tube amp
In terms of controls it has bass treble middle gain volume and what not for the overdrive channel, while the clean channel only has a tone and a volume control. The amp head also features a reverb.
20W all-tube amp
One 8ohms and two 16ohms outputs.

UTILIZATION

Dialing it in is more or less basic, the pots are really responsive, so you can start having a blast pretty quickly without breaking your head.
The manual is a bit "useless" because the amp head is easy to use, I know it for a fact because I "browsed" it...And I put that in quotation marks because It's so easy to use that it takes a whole page to explain how the footswitch or the pots work.
Is it easy to get a good sound out of it? I'd say yes, due to its simplicity, but if you want to get your own sound, you'll need to dig further into it.

SOUNDS

In my opinion, it's good for all styles, certainly due to that famous function called ISF: A small pot that you turn right to get an American sound and left to get a British sound.
I find the sound is in itself fat enough, but it is so incredibly versatile and you can get such a vast array of sounds. You need some time to get to know all its functions, though.
I love the clean channel as much as the overdrive. With a good responsive neck pickup you'll get a sound worthy of the best current amps, with the overdrive you'll get an incredible sensation of power. The only two snags are that the amp lacks a bit of personality and the reverb, which you should use sparingly because it has a tendency to become nasty...

OVERALL OPINION

I got it very recently, almost two weeks ago.
I tested many amps before this one and, to be honest, this brand didn't really seem to win, but in the end I bought it due to its value for money.
What I like the most about this amp, besides its sounds, is the simplicity...It's truly plug-and-play, no bias adjusting or anything of the sort, the pots couldn't be easier to use and they are effective...
As I said before, its value for money is simply insane. It's surprising that IMHO an amp like this is more convincing than a jcm amp, and it doesn't even cost $1000.
With hindsight, I don't know if I would buy it again, I mean, I chose it because I wanted to change my solid-state sound and I love it...But if I were 40 and had some tours in sight, I think I'd get a Mesa....But until that day comes, I won't regret a thing!
LONG LIVE BLACKSTAR!!!