Suhr Badger 30 [2006-2016]
Suhr Badger 30 [2006-2016]

Badger 30 [2006-2016], Tube Guitar Amp Head from Suhr.

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Mark Twang 01/01/2010

Suhr Badger 30 [2006-2016] : Mark Twang's user review


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Single-channel tube amp, three 12AX7/ECC83 preamp and two EL34 power.
No lamp rectifier.
Rated at 30 watts RMS Class A
Cathode Biased: no need to adjust the bias during the relining.

Adjustable parameters:
six potentiometers type button "Chickenhead" Crane
- 1 Gain
- 3 for Eq: Trebble, Middle, Bass
- 2 for Scalling Power: Power Drive
an impedance selector (4/8/16 ohms) secure (providing a coin in the slot to slide the selector)

Front: an Input.
On the rear panel: two slots fuses, power connector, two outputs for speakers in parallel (do not forget to match the impedance!), Send input and the effects loop series.

Construction: Two air vents (on the top and rear) provide excellent heat dissipation, which is a guarantee of longevity to the components. The rear panel can be easily removed (4 screws in the chrome wood and 5 black screws in the screened area) and book and access to the three 12AX7 tubes (each is protected by a tubular chassis Belton aluminum which reduces the risks vibration) and two huge EL34.

Effects: None

Accessories: power cord, a set of fuses, a padded cover.


The preamp could not be simpler. It adjusts the gain, it corrects the bass, treble and midrange. The power stage is a little more unexpected: the Power Scalling is a method of attenuating the power of playing on the power tubes. By lowering the power decreases the power of the amp but this loss of power affects the clipping becomes saturated earlier and made the sound more quickly, and then compresses a lot. The Drive control can act on clipping and return behavior of the power stage identical to that without mitigation. More subtly, it can also be determined for the drive to add compression or to make the sound brighter, like a master volume. Everything is explained in the squib provided (in English only, but very easy to understand) is obtained very easily sound good, provided you take the time to understand the operation of the Power Scalling ... and not go below 2 on the power and 3 / 4 on the drive because the sound is rough.


The sound of the Badger 30 is typed amp vintage British rock. Both the Badger 18, first amplifier "official" John Suhr, sounded "Plexi" (JTM45), as the Badger 30 is a bit more modern, perhaps due to / thanks to its two EL34 tubes. That said, we remain in a register typed vintage. With a gain of less than 4, it is easy sounds crystal clear, bubbling or precrunch by adjusting the drive power stage. Beyond 7 / 8, we attack saturations frank and creamy. The amp responds well to volume knob allows the guitar and, despite its single-channel architecture, moving from light to very effectively saturated. Tested with an American Standard Telecaster and plugged into a cab Suhr 1x12 "closed back with a Celestion Vintage 30 into 8 ohms, the sound is full, shimmering, and very present. No problem to pierce the mix. But I have "clean" in the lower band of the EQ on 2 only. I guess with a cabinet open, the behavior differs.


The quality is paid: assembled by hand in the United States with selected components, the Badger is one of those 30 amps boutique who spilled so much ink: without doubt it is possible to mount it for yourself the 1 / 4 of the asking price, but the fact is that not everyone has the soul of a qualified electronics engineer. For 2000 € TTC, Badger 30 is what is asked, and very well, while releasing a reassuring feeling of solidity and reliability: this is a pro amp for connoisseurs, suitable for work at home, studio and to the scene.
- The high-end components
- The careful assembly
- The sound somewhere between British and JTM45 JCM800
- Easy grip
- The excellent performance on all types of vintage and modern effect.
- The effects loop is totally transparent
- The Power Scalling to mitigate and to refine the behavior of the power stage
- 4/8/16 ohm impedance adjustable which allows you to plug into any cabinet
- Excellent heat dissipation by passive ventilation
- The weight (16 kg)
- The look really classy
- The cover provided

- The price at the edge of apoplexy
- The head is unbalanced because of its huge transformer is a bit awkward to carry by hand on a long distance.
- The power Scalling only be exploited on 3 / 4 of the race. Below 2 on the power, you lose definition and body.