How Do Guitar Amps Work? [Complete Guide]

The past two years of lockdowns and restrictions have led to many people deciding to take up a hobby. With time on their hands, people have begun to indulge in something they had always wanted to but could never find the time for. Learning to play a musical instrument is the most recurring among the most popular pastimes that have boomed lately. The guitar is a great instrument to understand and may not be as difficult as you believe. If you want to play electric guitar, you need an amplifier or an amp. How do guitar amps work, and what should you be looking for when you are thinking of buying one? 

fenders guitar amplifier
Fenders guitar amplifier

Check out Crunch Reviews for the latest news and products if you are on the lookout for some headphones that work great with guitars and do not want to get bogged down in technical details. Back to our topic – let’s explain how a guitar amp works.

 How Do Guitar Amps Work?

The fact is that when we look at the question of how do guitar amplifiers work, we will see that the concept is very quite simple. However, before we get to that, we need to look at how an electric guitar works. The two main types of guitars are acoustic and electric. 

Acoustic guitars are those with hollow wood bodies. Although many models can be, they are generally not amplified (although many models can be) and rely upon projecting the sound as it resonates in the body, which acts as a soundbox.

acoustic guitar
Acoustic Guitar

The electric guitar usually has a solid body and a device known as ‘the pickup’ or pickups. This part of the guitar sends the sound to the amplifier, so it helps to understand how pickups work. The pickups are copper wire tightly coiled around a magnet. In simple terms, when a string is plucked, the magnetic field is disturbed, and the signal is sent down the cable – or wirelessly in some cases – to the amp.

electric guitar
Electric Guitar

 Inner Workings Of A Guitar Amp

Now the amp gets to do its job. A pre-amp is the first stage of the procedure, and this strengthens the signal and sends it to the power amp. The power amp drives the speakers and presents the signal to those in an electrical instruction. The result is sound as we hear it from the speakers. This sound can be modified in volume, tone, and many other ways in more sophisticated examples.

 If you’re looking at buying an amp, our next section is about what you need to look for, and there are a few features that should be considered. Also, there are different types of various usage, as we shall see.

See also: 14 Best Piano Software To Learn Piano Easily | Top Piano Apps

 Features To Look For In A Guitar Amp

Now that we have answered the query: How do guitar amps work? Let’s look into their features.

guitar with amplifier
Guitar with amplifier

What do you need in a guitar amp? That depends on the use. Are you looking for an amp to practice with at home and improve your playing? Or one to use for band practices with friends, a school band, or another group? Or perhaps you need a professional amp as you are heading out on tour? The latter is a big step and requires professional advice, so we recommend you find a reputable retailer and ask them for recommendations.

The performance meters to look for are its wattage – the power and loudness that it produces – which will need to be greater for performances and not for practicing. The practice amp does not need a massive wattage as it’s only you – the player – who will hear it.

Tips For Beginners

Let’s be honest; if you are a beginner, you want to keep your budget small if you decide that playing the guitar is not for you. In this case, you wouldn’t want to spend a fortune on one of the big-name brands, such as Marshall or Fenders. Your best bet is an affordable and usable practice amp with low wattage. You must also be sure it is  beginner-friendly 

guitar practice setup
Guitar practice setup

We will give you another tip: If you don’t want to disturb your neighbors, you should make sure your amp has a headphone jack and buy a pair of headphones that work with it. Make sure you check the size of the plug and the output socket, as there is more than one type across the guitar amp industry. Also, make sure the parts of the guitar amp you choose to use are readily available. 

amplifier features
Amplifier Features

  Modern guitar amps tend to use transistor technology and are not expensive, so there will be plenty of choices for you within the budget you have set. Check out online reviews and retailers for ideas, or visit a local music shop where you’ll find enthusiasts happy to pass on their advice. 

See also: Top 22 Best Free Beat Making Software (Updated)

Which Guitar Amp Is Best For You?

 If you can answer the question, how do guitar amps work, you can now choose an amp best suited for you.

 It’s great to see live music returning in large and small venues after being stricken by the pandemic. Even if you are just a beginner, we strongly recommend that you buy a decent amp for your budget, and there are many reviews, blogs, and articles that will help you make the right decision. 

live music
Live music

 If you want to perform, eventually, you will find a bar or other venue in most cities and towns that have an open mic night. These are great fun. You will get to make new friends and also get used to performing in front of a crowd. 

Check them out now and start enjoying your guitar to the fullest. Open mic nights have been the foundation of many a great band. This could certainly be a step forward for you.


How do guitar amps work? We hope we have answered this question and helped you choose which amp to get for yourself. Especially as a beginner! Happy playing.

See also: Top 4 Loud Music Player For Android To Use In 2021

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He is a Tech Geek, Gadget Expert, SEO Expert, Web Designer, and a Blogger. Having a technology background gives him a unique perspective on what is the latest and best when it comes to tech.