4 of the Best Guitar Headphone Amps Under $70
Guitar can be a very loud instrument. We’ve all heard stories about waking the neighbors with rock ‘n’ roll, as well as driving family members and roommates crazy with constant playing. If you don't want to get evicted, you may want to consider practicing guitar using a guitar headphone amp.
For a fraction of the cost of a full-sized guitar amp, a guitar headphone amp will provide a similar sound via a pair of headphones. Guitar headphone amps are also portable, meaning you can take them on the road with you. They make for a great practice tool when warming up for gigs.
To use a guitar headphone amp, connect your guitar and a pair of headphones to the device and start playing; it's that easy. Let's explore 4 of the best guitar headphone amps for under $70.
1. VOX amPlug 2 Headphone Amplifier ($39)
A bestseller for over a decade, the Vox amPlug 2 is described as "the easiest way to enjoy true analog amplifier sound in your headphones." Plug your headphones into the unit and play. Your neighbors won’t hear a thing.
The classic Vox amplified aesthetic is reflected in the design of this little unit, which plugs directly into an electric guitar’s output jack. The Vox amPlug 2 is palm-sized, so it doesn't extend further than the edge of the body of most guitars; it's also completely wireless.
With built-in amp presets and effects, the Vox amPlug 2 also provides an assortment of creative sound design options.
There are seven different models of this guitar headphone amp available which include the AC30, Classic Rock, Metal, Clean, Blues, Lead, and Bass version. Each model provides a unique tone.
2. Blackstar amPlug2 FLY Headphone Amplifier ($48)
Similar to the Vox amPlug 2 in many ways, the Blackstar AmPlug 2 seems to have one major advantage and one major disadvantage.
The advantage is that it can handle high gain levels a bit better than the Vox amPlug 2; this has been one of the only complaints the Vox amPlug 2 has received. The Blackstar AmPlug 2 was clearly designed high gain handling in mind.
The disadvantage is that this unit will always be an approximation (although a pretty good one) of some of those classic Vox sounds.
When deciding between the Vox amPlug 2 and Blackstar AmPlug 2, what’s more important to you? Authentic classic amp sounds, or clarity at high gain levels?
Ultimately, both pocket amps are thoroughly serviceable options at affordable prices that will get the job done.
3. Electro-Harmonix Headphone Amp ($57)
The Electro-Harmonix Headpone Amp is a sleek little option with a simple design. There's one input jack, one volume knob, and one headphone output. It’s incredibly portable and easy to use.
This unit doesn’t contain the amp preset options that the Vox amPlug 2 does. It's more well-suited for quiet practice using your pedalboard or pre-amp FX (which EHX proudly states the Electro-Harmonix Headphone Amp is built to handle, gain-wise), or playing clean.
4. Rockman Guitar Ace Headphone Amp ($68)
The Rockman Guitar Ace Headphone Amp looks like an old cassette walkman. It even comes with some of the fuzzy, over-ear headphones that used to accompany walkman machines. It's been said these headphones aren’t the highest quality, but the unit itself still provides excellent value.
This headphone amp delivers a crunchy, classic rock sound. If you're looking for a clear tone, you may want to consider another option.
For people looking to relive the 70's to 90's, the Rockman Guitar Ace may be the headphone amp for you.
Alex Bruce is a writer for Guitartricks.com and 30Daysinger.com.