The Monoprice 15 Watt Tube Amp is a vintage looking lamp with a classic 60s sound in 2021. The thing about old school is that it never gets old. Trends come and go, but the classics will forever remain that, a classic.
You can’t go wrong with an amp that you can fine-tune to play any kind of sound you want to emulate. The power of amps will forever play a core part in finding your right sound to take the world by storm. In this Monoprice 15 Watt Tube Amp Review we’ll dive into more about the amp to give you a full picture of it’s uses.
Company Pricing Advantage
The Monoprice brand was established in 2002 building a formidable reputation in product quality and customer delivery. They always provide you with the best experience they can which remains such a rare commodity when it comes to business.
They offer over 7000 premium quality products that hit most people on a budget. Their business model is set up in a way where they can cut on many supply chain prices, making them able to sell their products cheaper than their competitors.
The Monoprice 15-watt combo tube amp hits all the right tones. If you want an old classic-inspired guitar amp, then look no further. One look at the design of the Monoprice 15-watt tube amp and you already feel you right on your way to playing alongside Carlos Santana. This amp holds a 1*12 Celestion speaker and supercharged by 5 vacuum tubes, 2 of those being EL84 tubes.
There are similar amps like these with similar sound tunes that go upwards of $500. The money you save alone for this amp that can compete with the best is mind-boggling. Priced at $249.99, it is an absolute steal.
Stick around as I go through what makes this combo tube amp a must-buy for 2021
EL84 Provide That 60s Vibe
The use of emulators, mods, and other technologies was known as the “British invasion”. This sound was a cultural phenomenon. In the late 60s, EL84 tubes were one of the main reasons to get that tone.
The right amp uses a 5 tube setup with 2 EL84 tubes partnering with 3 12ax7/ECC83 tubes in charge of the preamp and reverb sections.
The very best manufacturers of the EL84 tubes were the ones that made the most money. It offers the full output from a small speaker. This makes it easily overdriven and in this process, it gives you that iconic sound we all associate with the 80s. You can already picture that treble chime in your head as if you were a part of that massive Woodstock concert.
The majority of ‘British invasion’ bands preferred amps that used EL84 tubes manufactured by the Mullard brand. At the time, the Mullard brand was known to manufacture the best EL84 tubes on the market.
The reason why this British sound resonated with the Americans so well was down to their uniqueness. The 6L6 tubes were popular in American music at the time and the new EL84 was a breath of fresh air.
Control Like No Other
These tubes will carry your tone.
For your control knobs, you have gain, volume, tone, bass, middle, treble, and reverb knobs. All this provides fines tuning for finding your right sound.
The tone control is more like a presence control so you tweak it based on your instruments. If you are playing single coils or humbuckers, you can tweak the tone and it will shift your EQ or equalization on the amp. Once you are certain they are doing the job, you want to have the ability to tune your tone to how you want it to sound.
The spring reverb does this process so well. It adds the reverb to the tone. It passes the tone along with the spring which allows the vibrations along the spring to create sound waves. This travels to the end of the spring and some of these leftover vibrations are amplified creating that echo sound we so familiar with.
This feature is only offered thanks to the 611815 Stage Right amp. You can turn this feature off/on using a pedal. Many guitarists prefer to have an on/off switch rather than a pedal.
The Design To Please The Masses
Everyone loves the classics. This takes you back to the 50s and 60s with the retro cream-colored synthetic exterior. The chrome corner guards are a fitting look for a durable design. There is a leather handle making it comfortable and easy to pick up. The cloth speaker grills add a tough touch.
The Monoprice 15-watt tube amp sports many pros for what is needed in your guitar amp.
Responsive Tube Amplifier
There are 3 high-quality 12AX7 that push the reverb and preamp part enabling a more distinct sound. The EL84 delivers that punch and that distinct ‘British Invasion’ sound we all love.
Inserting Effects Between Power Amp And Preamp Gives Versatility
With the fx send and receive options, you are able to fine-tune these settings to your liking. The amount of different sounds you are able to replicate with this setting alone makes it a must-have.
Switch between full power and 1-watt limited amplification
We all have that one neighbor that complains about the noise you are making. There is a 1-watt limited function where you are able to practice late at night or at a lower tone unlike the Joyo Bantamp Zombie which doesn’t do well on lower volumes. This is such a convenient design for guitarists who love jamming at home. The 15-watt packs a great punch if you are looking to blow the roof off a place during a gig.
Many compare the sound loudness to a Double Stack.
The Design Looks Sleek
Textured synthetic leather looks the way you’d expect the retro amp to look. It has the 50s and 60s retro shade of cream that will fit into any setting. The amps cabinet has a nice open back and a cloth speaker grill which protects your device if it falls over or not.
Durable and Versatile
The corners of the device have chrome guards that are excellent for durability. The leather handles make it easier to carry around.
Any top-tier product has minor downfalls.
Spring Reverb Only Works Via A Pedal
It would be better if the spring reverb came with a switch to make it accessible. The majority of the time you don’t want to focus on the foot pedal when you are playing and rocking out.
What Customers Think Of The Amp
There are over 850 reviews on the official Monoprice website, and customers cannot stop raving about this product. It has an average rating of 4.7/5 which makes it an overwhelming client favorite.
The customer service received is also a notable function of the overall experience of buying the product. Shipping times are fast and reliable and the amp is packed in a box that is in another box. How much more safe can one be?
Your amp or electronics, in general, won’t get damaged. The customer says the pictures don’t do the look of the amp justice. In person, it looks stunning to the eye.
People loved the 1-watt function and said it performed better than they could have ever expected. This feature makes it an excellent practicing amp alone.
Beginner customers noticed a big difference between their solid-state amps and this tube amp. The sound is crisper and cleaner.
What The Supplier Promises
It’s important to take into account the overall experience when buying a product. Sometimes you can have a great product but the supplier may be the reason why you don’t buy.
Monoprice Offers A 1 Year Warranty
They are a supplier that stands behind their product. For one year, you are liable for a replacement if anything breaks and to top that off they offer a day 30-day money-back guarantee if you are not satisfied. This alone reduces the risk in dealing with suppliers that may appear sketchy.
They ensure simplicity in their product packaging using recyclable materials. Customers were super impressed with how they delivered the product as it was safe and well taken care of.
Quality Service And Support
They offer magnificent customer support if anything does go wrong. They have a technical support team who helps troubleshoot different electronic products. They make sure your service is well received at all levels making this an easy process from buy to delivery.
12″ Celestion® Seventy 80
80Hz ~ 10kHz
Total Harmonic Distortion
0.5% (clean mode)
Hum and Noise
-75dB below rated power
50 watts maximum
Amplifier Load Range
8 ~ 16 ohms
3x ECC83/12AX7 preamp tubes
Power Amplifier Section
2x EL84 power tubes
– 16.8″ x 17.1″ x 9.25″ (427 x 435 x 235 mm)
– 25.4 lbs. (11.5kg)
Monoprice 15 Watt Tube Amp Review – Overall Impression
You can’t go wrong with purchasing this amp. It is a no-brainer if you look for a high-quality amp that provides that old-school feel and sound to your collection.
The design and sound layout of the Laney CUB-12R are similar and some may even say Monoprice outright copied them. For us, this is perfect because if you were to buy a new Laney Cub 12R, it would set you back $581. The value of this design and sound quality alone stacks up to those much higher in their price range. The Monoprice website offers its design for $249.99
The look and feel of it give you a retro 50/60s vibe and overall you will love it. The EL84 is the standout feature when it comes to that punchy sound we all crave. Kitted with your choice of hair raising 15-watt sound or a more mellow 1-watt setting. This makes it a versatile amp for many scenarios.