The smallest guitar amplifier, the Vox amPlug 2, can fit in your pocket. Other mini-amplifiers are small enough to put in your backpack or even the gear pocket of your guitar case. Fortunately, there are plenty of options if you love tiny portable amps.
Vox amPlug 2
The cable-free, battery-operated Vox amPlug 2 is the size of a pack of a gum, with a foldable jack that slips into your guitar when you're ready to play. It was designed to sound best over headphones for practice sessions or warm-ups before gigs, but its output jack technically allows you to send the signal to any speaker system that has a similar jack size for its line-in. The amp can also send its signal to a recording system, so it can be used in the studio.
Some of the features of this pocket-sized rock and roll wonder include the following:
- Headphones output jack (which can also be used as an output for other headphone-sized jacks)
- Auxiliary input jack, so you can plug in an mp3 player or tablet and play along to your favorite songs
- Pocket-sized W x D x H dimensions of 3.39 x 3.15 x 1.22 inches
- Only requires two, AAA batteries and does not need cables
- 17 hours of battery life
- Auto power-off function, so you won't constantly kill your batteries by forgetting to turn it off
- Three amp model tones
- Nine effects (three kinds each of Chorus, Delay, and Reverb)
The standard AC30 Vox amPlug2 costs about $40. Vox has made several other versions of the amPlug 2 that model different instruments and genres of music including:
- Bass guitar
- Classic rock
Other Tiny Amplifiers
If you want something that has more wattage to it but still small enough to fit in a gig bag, these great sounding miniature amplifiers will do the trick.
Marshall MS2 Micro Guitar Amp
The MS2 is a battery-operated miniature Marshall amplifier with a belt clip on the back and a 9-volt battery to keep it rocking, cable-free. At about $47, it looks and sounds like a Marshall half-stack, except it ways 12 ounces and has dimensions of 2.4 x 4.3 x 5.5 inches, small enough to fit in the side pocket of a gig bag. It features clean and overdrive modes and a tone knob just like the big Marshalls.
Orange Amplifiers Micro Crush PiX 3
Orange's Micro Crush PiX 3 has all the fuzzy wonder of the full-sized Orange amplifiers but is squeezed into a tiny 5.91 x 3.35 x 5.91 inch package weighing only two pounds. One of the more expensive mini-amps at a price-point of about $69, it has some nice features. Orange put a built-in tuner, an overdrive button, a tone knob, and a headphone jack into the mini-amp.
Fender '57 Mini Twin Amp
If you're a diehard fan of Fender's history-changing, retro amplifier sound, your mind will be blown when you see how the legendary company has shrunk one of its most famous vintage Fender amps to the size of a cigar box. The Fender '57 Mini Twin Amp delivers a classic sound out of side-by-side 2-inch speakers with a clean channel, built-in distortion, a tone knob, and a 1/4-inch output jack that can go to headphones, a power amp or recording gear. At about $40, this twin mini-amp is a great buy.
Tiny Amps Bring Joy to Guitar
If you're a guitar player who needs amplifier capabilities on the go or in places where cables cannot follow, the current market of tiny amps is a glorious thing. They let you go virtually anywhere to play; what joy!