Harp Amps , what's the difference

Valve,tube, solid state?

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Tube is another term for valve. There are big differences in how tube amps sound. Most of those who aspire to play blues on the harmonica are looking for an amp which will provide a greater or lesser degree of tube distortion, because they usually sound warmer and richer than solid state amps. There are many digital simulations of amps of all kinds readily available today, but though they may allow you to create cool sounds which can work well for harp, they often lack the dynamic response of a good tube amp.

There are good solid state amps for certain purposes (the old Roland Jazz Chorus or Roland Cube are examples), but they’re not generally objects of desire for harmonica players.

In the end the most important thing is, do you like the sound of a particular rig? If it makes you happy then it’s good :grinning: But I wouldn’t recommend spending any amount of money on an amp unless you’ll be playing it live with a band. Amps are tools and there’s not much point in buying tools you’re not going to use. And a good player will sound good through anything :wink:


Thanks again for your time and help. Learning so much . I am shopping this weekend for a new mic. How do I get a sm57 with volume control. Like Ines?

Hi Michael, I got mine from Greg Heumann at blowsmeawayproductions. However, we now have a new harmonica microphone, the Harp Blaster HB52, produced in cooperation with sE Electronics. List price in Germany is €219. This is the best harmonica mic I’ve ever played in terms of sound, handling and playing comfort and I will be using it exclusively in future:

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