Fender Mini Deluxe Amp Review.

Honey, I shrunk the Hot Rod Deluxe!

OK, so it’s not as powerful as that, but this little puppy can still rock – for its size!

The Fender Mini Deluxe looks like the “Mini-Me” to the Fender Hot Rod Deluxe – it includes identical “dogbone” handle, chrome control plate, mini chicken-head knobs. The Fender Mini Deluxe has Fender tone too (just a bit less of it than it’s 40w, tube powered big brother)! In fact, it’s a 1w solid state amp with a single 2″ speaker.

Fender Mini Deluxe Features

This is where I usually state the “features at a glance”, but to be honest – the Fender Mini Deluxe is a really simple battery powered amp and there isn’t a lot of room for bells and whistles. These pretty much are the features:

  • One watt of power
  • Single 8 ohm, two-inch speaker
  • 9V battery-powered
  • Headphone out
  • simple controls: Volume, Tone, Drive

Is the Fender Mini Deluxe a toy or a real amp?Fender Mini Deluxe

This is the big debate.

People who love the Fender Mini Deluxe say it’s the real deal, while people who bought it expecting a “real” amp say it’s a toy you’d expect to buy at Walmart.

The truth is somewhere in the middle.

The Fender Mini Deluxe is pretty awesome for its size ( 5.8 x 6.2 x 2.8 inches and just over 1 lb) and price, but it will not compare to a traditional practice amp. It’s surprisingly loud for its size, but it won’t rattle any windows.

Yes the Fender Mini Deluxe is a bit of a novelty, but it’s a rocking novelty well suited for late-night, dorm or apartment practice. And selling for around $35, the Fender Mini Deluxe Amp is a very well priced novelty at that.

Besides, the damn thing is just so cute!

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Vox AC1 RhythmVOX Portable Practice Amp Review.

The AC1 RhythmVOX ups the ante on the battery powered guitar amplifier stage. It’s a great portable practice amp, but the beauty of the RhythmVOX lies in the 66 Rhythm/Song Patterns it provides for hours of fun.

Vox-AC1-RhythmVOXThe RhythmVOX can be used as a straight forward metronome, or song accompaniment with a host of song style beats.

Coming in at about the size of a lunchbox (7″W x 2-1/2″D x 5″H) and weighing about 1 lb, the Vox AC1 RhythmVOX is a truly portable battery powered amp.

AC1 RhythmVOX Features

Rhythm Features

At the heart of the AC1 is a Rhythm box. Sure, the RhythmVOX is a great little amp, but what really makes it stand apart from the rest of the portable battery powered amps are the Rhythm Features.

Rhythm specs at a glance:

  • Includes a total of 66 built-in Rhythm/Song Patterns
  • Tempo range: 40-240bpm
  • One extended-length additional song pattern

The Vox AC1 RhythmVOX includes 10 rhythm patterns ranging from standard, metronome beats – including 4 beat, 8 beat and 16 beat – to more advanced style-based pattens like blues, funk reggae and jazz.

Add to these patterns, the ability to select 6 different variations of each and you get a total of 66 rhythm parts to chose from! Also included is an extended, multi-measure drum part.

The quality of these beat patterns is excellent. The tempo and volume of each can be controlled in an intuitive way, so you can quickly dial in the settings you want.

Amp Features

The AC1 RhythmVOX is much more than just a rhythm box, it’s also a very competent little amp.

Here are a few of the amp features:

  • gain, tone, and volume controls
  • A pair of 3″ speakers delivers a full-bodied sound
  • A dedicated E-string tuner
  • headphone jack (essential for private practice)
  • Aux In jack – to jam along with your CD or MP3 player
  • Optional AC power adapter

The AC1 utilizes the same analog circuitry as the Vox amPlug series of headphone amps, and includes an Overdrive switch for increased sonic variation- on for high-gain sound;off for a bright, clean sound.

The RhythmVOX is a truly portable battery powered amp that runs off 6 AA batteries for up to 26 hours of play, but an AC power adapter is also available.

Conclusion

Whether you’re a beginner who is using the RhythmVOX to help practice keeping the beat or a more advanced player looking to break out of your rut and create some new avenues of exploration, this little guy delivers the goods.

AC1 RhythmVOX is impressive for a portable battery powered practice amp with a full compliment of tone shaping possibilities through the tone, volume, gain and overdrive controls. You’ll be surprised how good a pair of twin 3″ speakers can sound!

But the AC1 is also a great little beatbox, destined to send you down a host of new playing possibilities

The AC1 RhythmVOX currently sells for about $49 on Amazon.

Demo

I’ll finish things off with a demo of the Vox AC1 RhythmVOX in action:

(click here if the video above doesn’t play.)

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