Do you want to take your playing and turn it up a notch? Like, literally turn it up? Then look no further – our guide for finding the best ukulele amps is here!
With so many options on the market, it can put your mind into overdrive trying to figure out which make and model is right for you and your four-stringed companion. Can you use a guitar amp with your ukulele? And even if you can, should you? What key features should you be on the lookout for? What the heck are watts and more importantly, how many watts do you really need?
We’re AMPed (sorry, I couldn’t help it!) to answer all of these questions and more below. So let’s plug in! Er… I mean dig in!
Before we get ahead of ourselves, we need to make sure your ukulele is capable of being plugged into an amplifier. While most of you will probably already know the capabilities of your uke, I want to take a second to cover this for any true beginners out there.
In order to plug your uke into an amp, it needs to have some sort of pick-up system installed in it. There are several types of pickups out there, but for the purpose of this section, all we are concerned with is if it has a pickup at all.
The easiest way to figure out if your uke is set up to be played with an amp is to check for an input source for a 6.35mm audio jack (the one that’s like a headphone jack but bigger). Inputs will be located on the bottom or bottom side of the uke body.
Have one? Great, let’s keep rolling!
Ukulele amps vs guitar amps
One of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to shopping for an ukulele amp goes something like this: can I use a guitar amp with my ukulele? And the answer to that question is a resounding YES! Electric ukuleles use the same 6.35mm audio cords (mentioned above) as electric and acoustic electric guitars, making cords and amps interchangeable.
However, it’s important to note that while many guitar amps are suitable for ukuleles, there are some that are optimized for traditional hard-bodied electric guitars and are therefore less suitable for the ukulele (unless you have a hard-bodied electric uke like this one). Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that you’re looking for amps designed for acoustic electric instruments, which again are essentially acoustic instruments with pickups installed.
Watt the heck are those?
All amps come with a specified wattage. In essence, the number of watts an amp has is a key factor in determining its maximum volume level before the sound begins to distort. Wattage, or lack thereof, also impacts overall tonal richness of the sound that is produced. Therefore, amplifiers with higher wattage ratings are capable of producing more powerful and dynamic sounds, while amps with a lower wattage become distorted and thin more quickly when cranked up.
While it’s not entirely accurate to say that higher wattage is always better, it’s generally true that higher wattage signifies a more capable and versatile amplifier. Luckily for us uke players, we – for the most part – aren’t looking to bring the house down, and so we don’t require the highest wattage.
So what features do you want?
The answer to this question mostly depends on your intended usage of said amp. If your goal is to play with other musicians on stage, it’s important to select an amplifier with enough wattage to cut through the mix and be heard amidst the other performers. On the other hand, if you plan to perform solo in front of an audience, you might want an amplifier with multiple channels and an MLR mic cord input to allow you to sing and play at the same time. If you intend to play on the go, there are amplifiers with battery power capabilities.
Before making a purchase, it’s essential to consider your specific needs and preferences, to ensure that you select an amplifier that best suits your intended use. To help you out, we’ve put together a list below of some of the best amps currently available for uke players.
Take a look!
The Best Ukulele Amps
Whether you’re a seasoned player or a beginner, our list of top ukulele amps has something for everyone.
Kala Mini Tweed 5w Acoustic Amp
At $79 dollars, this little guy makes for a great budget option. Its compact size and lightweight design make it highly portable and easy to transport, and it can be powered using both an AC adapter and 9v batteries, which adds to its convenience. Additionally, it features an auxiliary port that enables you to play music from your phone.
While this amp is ideal for playing in small rooms or outdoors for a small audience, it may not deliver enough power or volume for larger spaces. It also has limited knobs for adjusting the tone, which may not suit the needs of some musicians.
Orange Crush Mini 1×4 3w Ukulele and Guitar Amp
Introducing the Orange Crush Mini, a portable amp that packs a punch and looks cool doing it. With a bold color that sets it apart from the rest, this amp has some unique features that really make it stand out.
One feature that sets the Orange Crush Mini apart is its built-in chromatic tuner, which allows you to tune your instrument without needing any additional equipment. And with a speaker output, you can even plug this little guy into a larger speaker for an even bigger sound.
This amp is perfect for beginners, with features that make it easy to get a great sound out of it. So if you’re looking for a portable option that’s both stylish and functional, the Orange Crush Mini is a top choice.
Fishman PRO-LBT-500 Loudbox Mini Acoustic Amplifier
The Fishman Loudbox is a must-have for professional musicians.
Its features are unparalleled. With a power output of 60 watts, you’ll be able to deliver crystal-clear sound to large audiences. Additionally, the Fishman Loudbox boasts not only an auxiliary port, but also Bluetooth connectivity, providing endless possibilities for playing along to your favorite tunes.
What really sets this amp apart though are its advanced effects. With dedicated knobs for chorus and reverb, as well as a separate channel and XLR input for a microphone, this amp is great for performances. It even comes complete with its own tone controls!
This amp is an ideal choice for performers who want to sing and play simultaneously, and who demand the highest quality sound for their audience.
Read more: Can the Ukulele Be Self-Taught?
For more lessons on chords, techniques, and songs, make sure to get plugged into our site www.ukelikethepros.com. We offer you a bunch of great ukulele content that comes hand-in-hand with an awesome ukulele community that will get you amped up for your ukulele journey.