What are the Best 100 Watt Guitar Heads?

blues telecaster pickupsThe Heavyweight division of guitar amplification is the 100 watt head. This list offers a starting point in your search for the one that’s right for you.

The 100 watt head is pretty much the standard for guitar players of any genre when it comes to live performance. Right now we are going to look at a few of the greatest amps available to see if we can find the best one for you. These amps are all modern designs but some of them might be reissues of older vintage amps. These amps will be designed for heavy overdrive, maybe even leaning towards modern Metal type tones. Even with all of today’s modern technology it is hard to argue against tubes when it comes to a tried and true, great-sounding overdrive amplifier, so most of the amp heads we will look at are going to be tube amplifiers.

The size and price of many of these heads might turn some people away, but for collectors, tone hunters, and live performers, these amps deserve a serious look. Pair one of these amp heads with a 4 X 12 cabinet, or better yet, stack two 4 X 12 cabinets on top of each other and you have the classic “Amp Stack.” It’s hard to stand in front of such a stack and not conjure images of Jimi Hendrix, Randy Rhoads, Metallica and so many more.

Marshall Plexi 1959SLP 100W Tube Guitar Amp HeadMarshall Plexi 1959SLP 100W Tube Guitar Amp Head

The Marshall Plexi 1959SLP 100W Tube Guitar Amp Head is a reissue of the Marshall Super Lead Model 1959 that was first introduced in 1965. This is the amp head that Pete Townshend, Eric Clapton, and Jimi Hendrix used, and we now recognize it as the one that set the standard for how amplifiers should sound and look in Rock music. more…

Bogner Uberschall 100W 6L6 Tube Guitar Amp HeadBogner Uberschall 100W 6L6 Tube Guitar Amp Head

The Bogner Uberschall 100W 6L6 Tube Guitar Amp Head is a very high gain amplifier with the needs of the modern Metal guitarist in mind. The Uberschall delivers 100 watts of power using four 12AX7 tubes in the preamp section and two 6L6 tubes in the power section. The amp has two footswitchable channels both with extended headroom. more…

EVH 5150IIIS 100S EL34 100W Tube Guitar HeadEVH 5150IIIS 100S EL34 100W Tube Guitar Head

As the name suggests, the EVH 5150IIIS 100S EL34 100W Tube Guitar Head is an amplifier designed to get you that Eddie Van Halen sound that he made famous on the first few Van Halen records. This amp has three channels for extended options and they are all powered with a whopping eight JJ ECC83 tubes in the preamp section and four JJ EL34 Matched tubes in the power section, delivering 100 watts of power. more…

Soldano SLO100 100W Tube Guitar HeadSoldano SLO100 100W Tube Guitar Head

Created in 1987, the Soldano SLO100 100W Tube Guitar Head remains very popular today. Well-known guitar players who use the Soldano SLO100 include Eric Clapton, Mark Knopfler, Eddie Van Halen, Lou Reed and Tommy Kessler. The amplifier is driven by four 12AX tubes in the preamp section and four 5881 tubes in the power section. The 5881s are more rugged versions of the 6L6 tubes. more…

Marshall DSL100H 100W All-Tube Guitar Amp HeadMarshall DSL100H 100W All-Tube Guitar Amp Head

The Marshall DSL100H 100W All-Tube Guitar Amp Head is modeled after the JCM2000 Dual Super Lead amplifier that was created in 1997 and was highly regarded until being replaced by Marshall’s JVM series more than a decade later. Now, a decade after that, Marshall has decided to do a reissue of the beloved amp. The DSL100H is a two-channel amp pushing out 100 watts of power using four ECC83 tubes in the preamp section and four EL34 tubes in the power section. more…

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