After the little Orange amp didn’t live up to my expectations, I decided to get a better small amp for taking around and practising, or taking on holiday. I wanted something that was small enough to be put in a suitcase, but which had reasonable sound quality and some useful features.
As on so many occasions, my solution was to make a spreadsheet. I found 16 small amps and entered their specs into my spreadsheet to help guide my decision. The list included amps from Blackstar, Fender, Laney, Line 6, Marshall, Roland, Vox and Yamaha. I tried as many of them as I could in a couple of shops, and in the end I liked the feature set of the Vox, together with the sound from the 6.5 inch speaker, which was larger than the speakers in many of the others on the list. I’m convinced that there is no substitute for speaker size (for a full-sized combo amp, I always find less than a 12-inch speaker is a compromise in sound).
The Mini5 Rhythm has amp models, modulation effects and a set of drum rhythms (hence the name), so it’s versatile. It can run off mains power or batteries, and it looks good. I think it’s a good solution for my requirements (the Blackstar ID Core amps are also very good).
Here’s a link to the Vox Mini5 product page.