Blackstar HT Amplifier Galax VA

Studio 20? Well, if your home studio happens to be Abbey Road, the Blackstar’s appellation might make sense, because this is one loud-as-all-hell 20-watter. I used it for a fairly large club gig— mated with the Blackstar HTV-112 open-back cabinet ($249 retail/$199 street)—and the amp was feisty enough to be heard across the stage and into the audience. Small wonder that when the soundman gave me a board recording of the performance, it was obvious the Studio 20 was not put into the house mix. This low-wattage titan filled the club all by itself, with just a little help from signal bleed into the vocal mics.

Music Solutions
(276) 236-9106
7537 Carrollton Pike
Galax, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments

Data Provided by:
Orchard Springs Dulcimer
(276) 952-1865
105 S Main St
Galax, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Jodys Music Center
(804) 737-1346
54 Cedar Fork Rd
Richmond, VA

Data Provided by:
Smash Direct
18778427842x222
303 M Ashcake Rd
Ashland, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, DJ Equipment

Data Provided by:
Dnd Music
(757) 484-6233
3304 Taylor Rd
Chesapeake, VA

Data Provided by:
Barrs Fiddle Shop
(276) 236-2411
105 S Main St
Galax, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Guitars & Fretted Instruments

Data Provided by:
G&M Music Center Inc
(540) 662-3836
132 Stuart Dr
Winchester, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Acoustic Piano, Digital Piano, Band & Orchestral, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Jordan Kitt'S Music
(703) 450-5398
47100 Leesburg Pike
Sterling, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Digital Piano, Electronic Keyboard, Organs, Band & Orchestral

Data Provided by:
Bandroom
(540) 989-8777
4212 Brambleton Ave
Roanoke, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Band & Orchestral, Drums & Percussion, Guitars & Fretted Instruments, Print Music

Data Provided by:
Apple Music Inc
(540) 371-0473
1009 Princess Anne St
Fredericksburg, VA
Types of Instruments Sold
Drums & Percussion, Sound Reinforcement, Recording Equipment, Guitars & Fretted Instruments

Data Provided by:
Data Provided by:

Blackstar HT Amplifier

gp0610_gear0546Studio 20? Well, if your home studio happens to be Abbey Road, the Blackstar’s appellation might make sense, because this is one loud-as-all-hell 20-watter. I used it for a fairly large club gig— mated with the Blackstar HTV-112 open-back cabinet ($249 retail/$199 street)—and the amp was feisty enough to be heard across the stage and into the audience. Small wonder that when the soundman gave me a board recording of the performance, it was obvious the Studio 20 was not put into the house mix. This low-wattage titan filled the club all by itself, with just a little help from signal bleed into the vocal mics. But although the well-built Studio 20 is seriously road tough and gig ready, if you want to keep it as an “indoor” amp, its speaker-emulated 1/4" output and Master Volume let you record at low volumes if you’re miking, and silently if you’re going direct.

SPECIFICATIONS

CONTACT Blackstar Amplification, blackstaramps.co.uk

MODEL HT Studio 20H

PRICE $629 retail/$499 street

CHANNELS Two

CONTROLS Reverb, Master Volume, ISF, Treble, Middle, Bass, Overdrive Volume, Overdrive Gain, Clean Tone, Clean Volume

gp0610_gear0547TUBES Two EL34 power tubes, two ECC83 preamp tubes.

POWER 20 watts

EXTRAS Digital reverb, speaker-emulated output, Effects loop, footswitch included

WEIGHT 28 lbs

KUDOS Super-pristine clean tone. Ballsy overdrive saturation. ISF knob for blending American and British EQ voicings. Good value.

CONCERNS You better like it really loud if you want gritty clean tones.

Sonically, the Studio 20 is almost like the Batman anti-hero Two-Face. The Clean channel is as pristine and pure as Snow White, while the Overdrive channel is all about fury and aggression. Tested with a Guild X-160, a PRS Mira X, a Hanson Chicagoan, and a Fender Stratocaster, the amp’s dual nature was marked in each instance by either: (a) massive clean headroom that refused to get even slightly gritty until the controls were dimed to Godzilla volume levels, or (b) pretty ferocious saturation. There’s precious little sonic real estate flanking the two contrasts, which makes it difficult to dial up tones that evoke, say, roots rock or old-school rock and roll. Such styles seem to be “between the knobs,” so to speak.

Putting some vibey grit into the Studio 20’s immaculate Clean channel required adding some of my favorite overdrive pedals to the signal chain—a move that revealed this channel is perfectly tailored for those players who desire “hi-fi” amplification to best show off all the tonal colors of their stompbox armament. The Overdrive channel rages like a rabid boar, and as I couldn’t calm the roar for spiky or skanky tones, I used the channel exclusively for solos and riffs. The Tone controls are quite musical, and the EQ section’s exclusive Infinite Shape Feature (ISF) magically shifts the Bass, Middle, and Treble knobs between American (more precise center frequencies) and British (wider center frequencies) voicings.

The Stu...

Click here to read the rest of the article from Guitar Player


Guitar Player is a trademark of New Bay Media, LLC. All material published on www.guitarplayer.com is copyrighted @2009 by New Bay Media, LLC. All rights reserved