Atlanta Tube Amp
Buying Tips/Good Values

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Buying an amp
  • Start by THINKing about what you want out of an amp (practice, recording, gigging, etc). If you're not sure, talk to people who can help you. If you don't know anyone, ask me. I'm an opinionated crank and I'll tell you what you need.
  • Take your TIME and shop around. There are always good deals if you have the cash and time.
  • Focus on the FEATURES you're interested in ... NOT the wattage.
  • DON'T BE TIED TO A BRAND NAME as there are many great "under the radar" amps. Superior tone is the goal not brand name du jour.
  • VINTAGE VS. MODERN? AMERICAN VS. BRITISH? There are great amps in all categories. It comes back to what puts a smile on your face.

In conclusion, with some forethought, time, cash and a little info, you can have an awesome amp. Now what's so hard about that?


ATA "Good Value" Amps

To headoff the hatemail, there are many great amps available but I've found these to offer a good value for less than the price of a cheap used car. In addition, with minor modifications these can be superior amps.

This will get you started...


  • Reverb-O-Rocket (Linden, NJ era)- probably the best reverb available anywhere


  • Bassman '59 Reissue
  • Blues Deluxe
  • Blues Jr.
  • Deluxe Reverb '65 Reissue
  • Hot Rod Deluxe
  • Hot Rod Deville (4x10 is suggested)
  • Pro Jr.
  • Super Reverb '65 Reissue


  • JCM 800 series 
  • JCM 900 Series  
  • JCM 2000 Series
  • JTM 30, 45 or 60 combos


  • Studio 22


  • 5150 - head or combo (a great amp as is - with the bias mod, this amp is amazing!)
  • Classic 20
  • Classic 30
  • Classic 50


  • G40V (sounds good stock but with some circuit mods, this amp sounds awesome)
  • G60VR (ditto)

There are also a number of "under the radar" great sounding amps. The key is to explore.

General Suggestions (once you have an amp)

  • Plug your amp into a power strip. That way if there's a spike, the circuit breaker in the strip will pop and help prevent something from frying in your amp.
  • Run a fan on low behind your amp (small clip-on ones work well). This will help with your amp's ventilation and will keep things running cooler. Trapped heat with electronics can bring about premature failure.
  • Use SPEAKER CABLE to connect your amp with your speakers, not a guitar cord. See the Amps - Q&A tab for more info on this.
  • Assemble an emergency kit and take it with you to rehearsal, gigs, studio, world tour (spare fuses, tubes, small flashlight, duct tape, tools, etc).

Now go forth and find YOUR tone!

Call Steve McKinley at 404-545-3581 or e-mail