Acoustic guitars are great in many circumstances. And since they don’t require amplification, they are good to take on-the-go. But what if you want true electric sound and feel outside of traditional amplified settings? What if you want to take your Hendrix-style shredding to the park, the office, or become king of the subway (with a permit of course)?
These portable amp rigs are designed to give you an easy-to-use, battery powered, totally transportable music experience. Whatever guitar you prefer to play, you can power your sound with some excellent amplifiers that don’t require an external power source and still give you all the rock tone you’re seeking.
Incredibly affordable with powerful, compact tone, the Fender MD20 Mini Deluxe sports traditional Fender style and sound, in the tightest possible design. Its features include a dog bone handle for easy carrying, 8 ohm 2-inch speaker behind classic mesh face, and four black chicken head knobs. You can adjust volume, tone, and drive, to find a great Fender sound, no matter where you are. Powered by a single 9-volt battery, you’ll be taken aback by how great the MD20 sounds and how easy it is to take on-the-go.
A tiny, full stack Marshall amplifier, that actually plays? Now that’s cool. Marshall took their definitive rock amp rig and scaled it down to make the MS-4. You can put this portable rig on your desk or car dashboard, and aside from being an awesome decoration, you can actually plug in and play it. The battery powered 1-watt Marshall amp features volume, tone, and gain controls, and has a headphone jack that also functions as a preamp out. If you want a true rock amp aesthetic in an easily transportable package, the MS-4 is the one.
With an odd resemblance to its namesake, the Pignose Hog is a bold 20-watt combo amp. It runs on a rechargeable battery or AC power. Every charge affords from 6 to 10 hours of playing time and you can leave the charged Hog on the shelf for 3-4 months and expect it to hold its charge. The simplistic front-facing controls include volume, tone, and squeal aka distortion, which provides you with all you need when you’re playing on the go.
For something this small and sleek, the Blackstar Super FLY BT packs a lot of punch. It’s a 12-watt amp with 2 x 3″ speakers which runs on 8 x AA batteries, an optional rechargeable battery, or AC power supply. The face of the Super FLY is a straightforward speaker, with all the controls you need in a recessed top area. There’s dual channel inputs, one XLR/jack and a second ¼” instrument jack, as well as a 1/8 MP3 line in. Channel 2 lets you choose between clean and overdrive, or a specially voiced acoustic setting, as well as set the gain level. There are controls to adjust volume, bass, treble, and reverb, for each channel, and the Blackstar Super FLY is even Bluetooth compatible.
The Katana-Mini scales down Boss’s killer Katana series amps to a size that is so portable you’ll forget you have it with you. The convenient handle on top allows you to carry the 7-watt amp anywhere, and even hang it up somewhere for boundless sound on-the-go. Despite being only 3 lbs., this amp packs some heavy tone, featuring a multi-stage analog gain circuit, 3-band EQ, and tape-style delay. The Katana-Mini’s excellence is powered by 6 AA batteries or the single included rechargeable battery.
Don’t Think Twice, Take it With You
With the modern advancement in portable electric guitar amps, traveling with your axe is no longer limited to the acoustic crowd. There are so many scenarios where these battery powered amps will come in handy—from a quick band practice in that back alley before a show, to your lunch break at the office, these very affordable rigs are more than worth their price.
Check out everything else we have to offer on-the-go musicians at Samash.com.