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MF MD HG Black Friday Doorbusters 11-20-14
Product 488006

Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head  

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The Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H is a boutique-quality tube amp for the garage-playing musician that follows the tradition of Blackheart Engineering's ...Read More

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OVERVIEW

Killer Blackheart tone for the rocker with angry neighbors.

The Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H is a boutique-quality tube amp for the garage-playing musician that follows the tradition of Blackheart Engineering's Little Giant 5 amp. The Killer Ant amplifier head features Class-A, single-ended circuitry. The Blackheart Killer Ant guitar amp delivers the complete, classic, touch-responsive tube tone you need but at more manageable volumes for apartment dwellers and recording sessions.

Designed on a beer-stained cocktail napkin and prototyped, built, and tested in a one-car garage in Austin, TX, the little Killer Ant amp head is engineered to the same strict standards as the Little Giant 5 guitar amp, and delivers the tones and attitude you want when tone is everything and volume needs to be kept in check. The Killer Ant amp embraces 100% classic all-tube circuitry, but instead of a high power tube output section, it boasts a clever, all-tube power block pumping out a mere fraction of 1W. What you get is arena-rock tone at bedroom levels and no more angry neighbors.

Like its big bro, the Killer Ant guitar amplifier features completely overbuilt component specs, from 1W resistors in the signal path to double-sided PCB with 2 oz. traces. Even its diminutive cabinet, just over palm-sized, is built to take a beating with its 15-ply (18mm) void-free wood covered in durable black tolex. Final touches include distinctive white piping accents and a salt-and-pepper cloth-covered front baffle. 4-, 8-, and 16-ohm extension speaker jacks allow you to hook the Blackheart Killer Ant guitar amp head into virtually any cab you like, including a 4x12.

FEATURES
  • Output jacks: 16-ohm jack (1) 8-ohm (1), 4-ohm (1)
  • Solid State Rectifier
  • Volume
  • DC Power to filaments for super-quiet operation

Rock out without disturbing the peace—add the Killer Ant to the cart now.

SPECIFICATIONS

Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head

  • Output power rating: .25W RMS, 16-ohm load
  • Signal-to-noise ratio: 63 dB, typical
  • Input impedance: 1 megaohm
  • Preamp tubes: 1.5 of 12AX7/ECC83
  • Power tubes: 0.5 of 12AX7/ECC83
  • Rectifier: Solid state
  • Speaker outputs: 16 ohms (1), 8 ohms (1), 4 ohms (1)
  • Power requirements: 110/120 VAC, 50/60Hz, 20W or 220/240 VAC, 50/60 Hz, 20W
  • Size: 9.85" W x 7.9" H x 7.28" D
  • Weight: 13 lb.
Reviews
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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
BlackheartKiller Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head
 
4.7

(based on 19 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (16)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

80%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to use (5)
  • Excellent sound (4)
  • Portable (4)
  • Warm / comfy (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

      Most Liked Positive Review

       

      Very nice,

      Very good looking and the Blackheart logo has 3 layers. Red light is VERY bright. Fits nicely to the left of my 100 watt head's handle. At volume 2 it is as loud...Read complete review

      Very good looking and the Blackheart logo has 3 layers. Red light is VERY bright. Fits nicely to the left of my 100 watt head's handle. At volume 2 it is as loud as an acoustic guitar. At 5 it is at is it's best and sounds pretty hot and somewhat crunchy. At 10 it is distorted and loud but the bass is a bit flabby so don't expect your ultimate hard rock tone just by cranking this to 10. I like it best at 5 or 6 for crunch and then use a pedal for an all out lead tone. How loud is it at 10? My wife was in the next room watching tv with the door shut and she yelled for me to turn it down.

      VS

      Most Liked Negative Review

       

      Overdue Underdone

      This is a nice 1 watt amp that I would like to have seen with a small attempt at a tone stack, but the multi yap impedance out is a nice feature. I got...Read complete review

      This is a nice 1 watt amp that I would like to have seen with a small attempt at a tone stack, but the multi yap impedance out is a nice feature. I got too repair one, and like some of the features, but am not crazy about others. DC to the filaments is hard on the filaments, and leads to premature failure. The PC board issue is not a critical an issue when the tubes are as small as these, and the use of 2 oz. copper traces is a nice standard to keep. It is cheaper than doing a special order for 4 oz. copper, and cheaper than turret board hand wired flying leads or point to point, I do think point to point would have been very feasible in this amp, but it is much harder to design. When you put DC power to the filaments a main design issue for point to point has been overcome. I like the 1 watt output, but have a few reservations. I have a small collection of old Valcos, Silvertone Dannos etc, and they are all at least 5 watts. I have mad 1 watt amps, and all are point to point affairs with maybe 6 flying leads, and no PC board or terminal board of any kind. This does have a nice sound, but I think it could have been nicer. I was more reluctant to give it back to the customer than some amps I get in for repairs though.

      Reviewed by 19 customers

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      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Get one before they're gone!

      By Casey99

      from New Castle, PA

      About Me Novice

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Excellent Sound
      • Well built

      Cons

      • No Master Volume

      Best Uses

      • Jamming at home
      • Learning
      • Practicing

      Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

      I'm a beginner, looking for an amp to learn on at home. I tried a few solid state amps that I just didn't love the sound of, so I thought I'd try a small tube amp. I wish that I had bought this before wasting my money on the others. It churns out respectable rock (not metal) tones at almost the volume levels I was looking for (to be honest, I'm STILL running it through an attenuator so I don't annoy people while learning). It's built solid as a rock and the simple operation is wonderful. Nothings perfect, but the Killer Ant is just what I was looking for all along. I think somebody that knows what they're doing would "really" enjoy it.

      Comment on this review

      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Lotta fun for little money!

      By joweerocks

      from New Jersey

      About Me Experienced

      Ask me a question

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy To Use
      • Excellent Sound
      • Good Warmth
      • Portable

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Amateur Recording
        • Home Studio

        Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

        Plugged in my 2x10 30watt 4 ohm cab with 40 year old speakers! Neck position on my strat, behringer compression pedal produced a superb vintage tone.Decent volume ,not overbearing. Gonna try different pedals and cab combonations in the future.

        Comment on this review

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head

        By SLM

        from Houston, TX.

        About Me Novice

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Excellent Sound
        • Good Warmth
        • Portable
        • Powerful

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

            Exelent for the home

            Comment on this review

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Buy This!

            By Spaceowl

            from Belgrade, Maine

            About Me Professional Musician

            Pros

            • Easy To Use
            • Excellent Sound
            • Good Warmth
            • Portable
            • Powerful

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Perfect for Home
              • Professional Recording

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I purchased this about a month ago. It sits on top of my Legacy II half-stack. I have been running it through my cabinet and have not turned on my Legacy head since. The tone is very versatile and great for recording. I have been skeptical about 1 watt amps until my friend recently picked up one of the Marshall 1 watt limiteds. I did not want to dish out the cash for the Marshall and decided for the price of this what do I have to loose. Straight from my Gibson Les Paul into the head. Unreal sound and sustain. You can crank it on 7 and have a tone you just can't get from larger wattage amps. If you are looking fo a classic sound right out of the box. Do yourself a favor....Buy this amp!

              Comment on this review

              (3 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

               
              3.0

              it's ok, get what pay for

              By Thumpmyloins

              from Midwest

              About Me Experienced

              Ask me a question

              Pros

              • Easy To Use
              • Portable

              Cons

              • Poor Sound Quality

              Best Uses

              • Events
              • Performances

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I know most reviews are favorable for this little baby but I could easily live without it. Yes it's easy to use but the sound is very cold and ss like and no the mods associated with this amp won't turn it into a full tube stack. The mods are not tone effective other than new tubes but it is what is is even after that.Yes very easy to use, 1 knob c'mon even a drummer could figure it out (Sorry J lol)Hooked up to a Blackheart 1x12 cab it is still very loud in a small room. I don't see how some can hear talking at full volume because you would have to scream to be heard... same as playing with people sleeping in next room..wish I could sleep that sound.
              All in all I am much happier with a Cube etc.. for high gain at low volumes.. they sound better and way more eq. I did use a eq in fromt of the KA but just did not do much... a eq needs to be in the loop, (KA has none unless modded) to take advantage of it's powers.Also you have heard it before if you want any cleans at all look elsewhere, this amp was not made for that at all.I was fairly undecided on the KA untill I played my C30 and there is the tone for warm cleans and crunchy od. The KA IMHO is only usable up to 4-5 on the dial, after that it's just noisey and flabby bass, If I had to do it again, which looks like I will have ti I would go with the Blackstar HT-1.You get what you pay for and this amp is cheap to buy.

              Comment on this review

              (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great Sounding Amp

              By Biggs Johnson

              from Berkeley

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              This thing sounds great. No tone control is awesome. It sounds absolutely fantastic for recording. Everything from a nice bluesy overdrive to crunchy classic rock.

              Comment on this review

              (6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              Very nice,

              By Kelly James

              from Weslaco, TX

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              Very good looking and the Blackheart logo has 3 layers. Red light is VERY bright. Fits nicely to the left of my 100 watt head's handle. At volume 2 it is as loud as an acoustic guitar. At 5 it is at is it's best and sounds pretty hot and somewhat crunchy. At 10 it is distorted and loud but the bass is a bit flabby so don't expect your ultimate hard rock tone just by cranking this to 10. I like it best at 5 or 6 for crunch and then use a pedal for an all out lead tone. How loud is it at 10? My wife was in the next room watching tv with the door shut and she yelled for me to turn it down.

              Comment on this review

              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              WOW!

              By Freddy-jXzod

              from Michigan

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              Wifey doesn't dig glam rock or classic rock and is always complaining about me playing too loud. So I picked up the Blackheart Killer Ant thinking it might make for an interesting practice amp to play along with the radio and learn new tunes. I was shocked how great it sounds! At about 10'clock on the dial you get classic AC/DC riffage and classic rock tone at speaking volume! Crank it all the way up and you can get a nice 80's style crunch at just above a loud talking volume. I threw on an eq pedal and distortion pedal and used it simply as a volume/gain boost and got a great lead sound. There was enough gain gain for good early VH plexi type stuff, lots of pinch and natural harmonics! This amp is a gem for jamming with the radio at low volume or learning riffs without disturbing the neighbors...or wife! I gave it a 4 for features simply because there's no EQ, but that's easily fixed even the cheapest of pedals. I'd say the only downside is it's hard to get a clean sound, but any cheap solid state will do that if you need it, that's not what this amp is really for. If you play classic/80's rock and need a quiet practice amp that still sounds like your tube half stack, here it is!!!

              Comment on this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Love playing the ant

              By Anonymous

              from Undisclosed

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I have been looking for a low volume tube amp forever. I have built several different amps from scratch even to try to achieve a nice low volume for early morning playing in an unfinished basement with a family above. I would have built a killer ant similar design, but didn't want to go to the trouble to get a specially wound output transformer that would work with a 12ax7 as a power stage.The Killer Ant can be somewhat loud depending on the speaker and perception (some mornings it seems loud to me, others fairly quiet through the same cab) but ultimately does mostly what I have looked for. It can get good crunch early in the morning without being too loud. I like the tone as well, it isn't as dull as some triode output amps I have experimented with, but has a nice clarity without being harsh. It sounds great with my strat and P90 guitars, need to dig out the 335 clone to see how humbuckers sound, but haven't yet done so in several weeks of ownership. I haven't even gotten around to swapping tubes as it has a nice chimey clean to me and a nice crunch with clarity. There isn't much headroom, but that isn't the point and there is plenty of clean through my greenback loaded 4x12 for clean practice and through a smaller, less efficient speaker cab I can crank it without complaints. Different speakers make a huge difference with this amp in both loudness and overall character. I'm not sure how well the stock 1x10 cab is as I only played it for a few minutes in the store with that one and have plenty of various speakers and cabs at home to play around with.Overall, I thought of a huge list of reasons not to buy it with various small homebrew amps and vintage practice amps at my disposal, but now that I did, it has surpassed my expectations.Love the clarity, the low volume tube breakup, simplicity of just a volume knob and on switch, and the 4-8-16 ohm jacks. It also seems well built with the plywood enclosure and the insides look decent as well (I will probably only upgrade the signal caps in this one for now.) Another beauty, it only uses a couple of 12AX7's, so I should be able to use this amp without guilt forever as that will probably be the last tube ever to go out of production.

              Comment on this review

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Tube = Glorious

              By Anonymous

              from Undisclosed

              Comments about Blackheart Killer Ant BH1H 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              This is my first tube amp. I upgraded from an Orange Crush 30r solid state and this thing blows it away. I chose to go with a <1 watt amp because i live in an apartment with 4 other people at school and anything more wouldn't go over too well with the masses. Don't let the low wattage fool you though. This thing is amazingly loud for bedroom practice. I absolutely love my Killer Ant and would replace it with another if anything ever happened to it. At this price range there isn't anything that comes close.

              Comment on this review

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