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Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head  

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The innovative HT-1RH guitar amp head offers unbelievable tube sound in a compact format. The patent-applied-for ISF (Infinite Shape Feature) circuit...Read More

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OVERVIEW

Packs all the great tone and innovative features of the award-winning HT-5 tube amp into a 1W format.

The innovative HT-1RH guitar amp head offers unbelievable tube sound in a compact format. The patent-applied-for ISF (Infinite Shape Feature) circuit gives you infinite adjustment over the characteristics of the tone control network and takes you from the USA to the UK, and everywhere in between Add a fully specified speaker-emulated output, MP3/line input, plus an 8-ohm speaker out and you have everything you need for recording or practicing.

FEATURES
  • Innovative 1W tube head
  • 1 ECC83 and 1 ECC82
  • Unique push-pull power amp design
  • Based on award-winning HT-5
  • Two channels
  • Reverb
  • Patent-Applied-For Infinite Shape Feature (ISF)
  • Perfect for studio or practice
  • Speaker-emulated output
  • Stereo MP3/line input

A great amp for the studio or for bedroom jamming. Order yours now!

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Review Snapshot®

by PowerReviews
BlackstarHT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head
 
4.0

(based on 8 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

67%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

    Cons

      Best Uses

          • Reviewer Profile:
          • Experienced (3)

        Reviewed by 8 customers

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        (1 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Opps...Update to the 11/11 Review

        By aj0206

        from Southern man

        About Me Experienced

        Ask me a question

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Excellent Sound
        • Portable
        • Powerful

        Cons

        • Limited Functions

        Best Uses

        • Amateur Recording
        • Home Studio

        Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

        Sorry, prior review title contained a date error. Original review written 11/7/11. I guess the 7 stuck in my head stronger than the 11 did, hence the title "Update to the July 2011 Review." I should practice what I preach and proof what I write. Sorry for any confusion. Still mean every word I say though. Would of written more, but it was very early in the morning when the notion to update the review hit me. Oh well. Still, though, would someone out there that makes these decisions, decide to give the guitar-playing market (that's quite a large market) a fractional-wattage amp head, or combo, with all the bells and whistles given to their top-of-the-line 100-wt. stadium-rocking machines. I sound like a broken record, but ANYONE giving us the dream rig we've been dying for, and can play at home, will draw an awful lot of attention to their whole line of products. I bet you would see an increase in sales across the board by showing that you understand, and care, what the guitar-playing population needs. After all, after the tour, doesn't everyone go home? Make a "home" amp that doesn't leave anyone wanting for anything, and the world will beat a path to your door. It's the age-old adage of, "build a better mousetrap..." So, give us a feature-laden, fractional-wattage amp, with power settings for each of at least three channels (0.1-wt. to 5-wts. would be about perfect, and doable,) with at least a 12" speaker of top quality, or preferably, a head so we can use whatever cabinet combination we want, and you will satisfy a very hungry crowd of guitar players dying for that sound only a fully overdriven preamp and power amp can lend to any quality guitar, and player, or up-and-coming determined player, and we will pay a fair market price for it, regardless of what that has to be to satisfy the needs of countless thousands of players out there, from home recorders to headliners. Can't you see the light, and find your way home to us, the consumers of the full-range of your products. As of now, no one cares enough to give us enough in a low-wattage amp. Seems that low-wattage means low everything across the board on the amp. Give us the Caddy Elvis, and we'll be playing Elvis amps regardless of what we need. We just need a manufacturer to care about the little needs of the little guys to the rock stars. We all live in houses and play in those houses. Don't we all deserve a flagship amp for where we lay our heads each night. Just try, more than half heartedly, and you'll realize a return of benefits equal to what you give. That's the way of the world. Just DO IT! Blackstar, you gave it a good shot, but fell just outside the infield. We need a grand slam homerun. You already do it, just tone it down to manageable volume levels, even for the same price, and I'll buy at least two right out of the gate. Then I'm going to take a good, long look at the rest of your lineup for my needs in other areas. Charity starts at home, right?

        Comment on this review

        (0 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Update to July 2011 review

        By aj0206

        from Southern man

        About Me Experienced

        Ask me a question

        Pros

        • Easy To Use
        • Portable
        • Powerful

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Amateur Recording
          • Home Studio

          Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

          Back again for a few more words on the Blackstar HT-1, 1-wt. amp head. Well, it's three years later, and I'm getting ready to turn 56 early next year. I don't know how much longer I'll be playing. I'm not having any problems other than a trigger-finger release procedure done on my fretting hand, middle finger, which has caused me to incorporate my pinky into playing more than I ever cared to in the past. Too bad really because some longer-reach pull offs sound cleaner, and the triplet timing, cleanness, and sound are better than I remember them being doing the three-finger, traditional, lazy, blues player's way we've all seen and done before--that includes all the rockers out there too. Still have the HT-1, and use it and its sister head quite a bit. I play every day, and use these a lot of the time. I enjoy the sound I get out of them using whatever I front them with, which is always something different or new. I NEVER just plug into these amps and find a sound I want to lay a track down to on just about anything except something really clean; and again, the main culprit stopping that is the weak reverb, which hasn't been changed or updated in three years that I can tell. Blackstar actually came out with a new 1-wt amp head for Metal players, and I've yet to get my hands on one of them. It just doesn't seem all that attractive to me feature wise. The reviews, as well, seem to not be the best. It basically seems to be the same head with a different voicing to coax more gain, hence noise, out of an already too-noisy preamp architecture. No one has really answered my call to action to provide a top-of-the-line fractional wattage amp, save a couple of exceptions, for the home-recording, buddy jamming, solo-screaming crowd out there that surely has more residents than just me. The "Appetite for Destruction" 100-wt. down to 0.1-wt. head with Slash's signature on it from across the pond seems to be the leading contender out there so far, and it's been discontinued for a few years. Right before or after this came out, if I remember correctly. The ne AFD amp is a combo from 5- or 1-wt. that is still weigh too light on features, but not pounds, as in weight or the currency of its maker's country. The demise of the original, full-sized head might of had something to do with its two grand entry fee. I don't mind the size really, but it just seems someone could put out an amp that doesn't have to be "lunchbox-sized," but could pack in all the features without the huge transformers and big power soaks to actually tame a monster down to a teacup. I've tried the Special Ultra 6 that seemed promising, but I've had problems and problems with them until I'm about to give up. Alone, they sound more like the amps I watched guys play through when I got all jazzed about playing while in the sixth grade. Still, if you can get a good clean sound out of an amp, you can doctor the front-end with whatever you want. This practice seems to be what we're stuck with to get nice "simulated" overdriven power sections. All the major brands still think a low-wattage amp is in the ballpark of 5-wts, to maybe 1-wt. Too loud most of the time! Ever read the specs on speaker efficiency ratings? The dB sensitivity rating is measured at 1-wt 1 meter away, and you get sound level ratings hovering around 100dB. Definitely not a neighbor-friendly, let alone apartment-friendly sound level. C'mon guys, SOMEONE out there has got to get it into their heads that there is a whole untapped market out there waiting for a masterpiece to be released that is rated from .01 to 1-wt., or even up to 5. Ten is fine, but give me the option of turning it down to a normal level to jam with your friends and still carry on a conversation without a noise hangover from screaming at each other, or stopping playing every time you want to make a point. Across the pond they have a revived 1-wt. mini head or combo, for nearly a grand, that has a low-power switch down to 0.1-wt.. It lacks all the features you want and need to do what you really want an amp to do, plus it's paired with an 8" speaker. I don't care if it is a Celestion, you have to have a 10- or 12-in. speaker to move the air you need to emulate the sounds you want to emulate at a lower volume. Why is it that low wattage means low features and the ashcan end of everything else? Why can't someone bring out a feature-rich amp at a fractional wattage rating that will make half the guitar-playing population grin from ear to ear. After all, how many of you can really say you need, or can commonly utilize, a 100- to 120-wt. stadium sized stack, or even combo. Even the rock stars are at home sometime, and I'd bet they'd love to have an amp capable of reproducing the sound, harmonics, and all else that comes from their stage setup at a reasonable volume at home. I don't drink, but I bet wine drinkers like the same wine at home with dinner that they do at a nice restaurant. Today,you can run a pedal board or floorboard processor into a PA and rock out if it's a good system, which how many sound companies or bands having and touring with their own systems have bad-sounding FOH systems? I'm to the point where I use one of the dozens and dozens of preamps, both rack and floorboard models, into my own PA and play through a pair of lower-powered Mackie SRM monitors. Recently caught some EV Sx250 monitor/main 15" speakers that are passive, and "under-run" them with a Carvin DCM200L reference monitor/guitar power amp to get a perfectly-acceptable sounding stereo system, but it's still solid-state and quite often digital, to boot. Not what I want. Gee, I get going! The Blackstar is a nice head if you have good cabinets to go with it. A single 12 with a Vintage 30 is about as good of a setup as your frontend driving the thing will get you. My daughter has a little 8" Kustom 20-wt combo with a digital reverb/echo combination that sounds almost as good for a whopping outlay of 85 coins one Christmas when she got a Mini-Strat, along with her pro-level drums, and a little later on a 4/4 Cello. Not to mention her drum machines she used with open-ear headphones to teach herself how to play drums. All this while keeping first chair trumpet as a freshman and sophomore. Seems like yesterday I was tearing down and setting up at her Elementary school for the 5th and 6th grade talent shows. She left people with their mouths open as she calmly laid down her sticks and walked back to her seat. Skipped her Junior and Senior years of high school to go straight to college in a science and mathematics program that paid every penny of everything for her education she is finishing now. Smart kid. If only she became head of product development at a large vendor or something, dear old Dad could stick a bug or two in her ear, but that will never happen. Medicine is where our whole family went to for careers. I was fortunate enough to be able to retire at 50 and maintain my lifestyle and play guitar, which is a lot more fun. If the R&D guys would listen, or people would actually speak up, or write, or something, I, and a lot of others, could have a lot more fun without having to constantly find ways around the volume issue. Even Eddie's 50-wt combo will go down to 1-wt, taking the highs with it, and making the pre-amp noise, which seems to be excessive, unnerving at low volumes. You guys have got to figure this out in my lifetime, or I'm going to have to start my own amp company, I guess. So much for retirement then. Kind of self-defeating, if you know what I mean, and I know you do. The HT-1 is a good amp head. Could it be better? Yes, but so could just about anything else you would care to mention too. Keep wishing, and keep the faith. Someone will tap this huge market and earn themselves a big boost up the corporate ladder one day. Let's just hope it's one day soon. I really need it, don't you? I am soooo tired of waiting!

          Comment on this review

          (2 of 21 customers found this review helpful)

           
          1.0

          Did not like it

          By Dave

          from South Carolina

          About Me Experienced

          Ask me a question

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

            Cons

            • Poor Sound Quality

            Best Uses

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I didn't like the tone that much. My biggest problem with the amp was using head phones. The reason I bought it was to use at home instead of my Mesa head so I could play and not bother my family members. THe head phone jack had a constant hiss or hum, can't remember, I ended up returning it.

              Comment on this review

              (9 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              My favorite amp ever

              By Dean Jones

              from Atlanta, GA

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              This is by far my favorite amp. I have it connected to a Blackstar HTV-212 cab and it absolutely screams and sounds beautiful. With this cab, at home, I typically keep the volume at around 1/4 and the Gain around 1/2 and get a nice clean sound. Take the Gain past the 1/2 way point and it starts to break up a tad. Crank the Gain all the way up and you have some absolutely beautiful sounding breakup. I personally like this better than the overdrive channel and I do not really use the overdrive channel. Taking the volume up past 1/2 makes my ears bleed in my home office. It's astonishing how loud it is while driving 2x12 and just 1 watt!

              Originally, I purchased the HT-408 cab (4x8) and was just not very impressed at all. I could crank the volume on the amp and it just didn't get as loud as I wanted at a fully cranked level. The HT-408 sounded good, but just wasn't full or loud enough. So, I returned that cab and bought the HTV-212 and was just amazed at the difference. I would highly recommend at least putting this head to a 1x10 if not a 1x12 to get the best sound. It even sounds great connected to a 4x12!
              I'm giving an 8 here. I personally love the limited feature set for a home/practice amp. The tone knob is fine. I keep it in the middle myself... What I REALLY wanted out of this is a footswitch to get between the clean and overdrive channels. I keep it on the clean channel and run an overdrive pedal for some nice high gain tones. Sometimes I will just crank the gain on the amp on the clean channel and it just sounds amazing, even at 1/4-1/2 volume.
              Top notch. Beautifully made. Everything feels solid.
              Could be cheaper... for a 1w with limited features, I'd expect it to be about 25% cheaper.

              Comment on this review

              (1 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

               
              3.0

              noisy

              By Joseph Immesberger

              from east coast

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I sent it back, toooo noisy at idle with nothing plugged in. To bad because it had a nice warm sound for something that is basically digital. I know it got tubes or tube but it's a hybrid amp' which to me is cool. I think it's the best of both worlds.

              Maybe I just got a dud, the older ones without the reverb are suppost to be quiet.

              I've also read it's a pain to change tube/s. That I don't like.

              I think this is a good value if you can find a quiet one or don't mind some hum. It's cheaper than alot of pedals, as a matter of fact it kind of reminded me more of a pedal than an amp.
              HT-1RH
              1 watt, reverb, tone shaper, line out, ext speaker, headphone,nice appearance, basic stuff.
              Seemed well built.
              Good value, cheaper than some pedals.

              Comment on this review

              (10 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              A trendsetter

              By VikingBlood

              from New England

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              The first usable guitar amps appeared in the early 1930s. Now, after 80 years of using them, people are beginning to realize that the most useful guitar amp is one you can actually play through in the situation EVERYONE plays in most - in your living room / bedroom / hotel room etc. But that sounds like that 50-watt Marshall or 80-watt Twin Reverb onstage. So you don't have to change your style if you want to practice. The Blackstar 1-watt head with reverb is the first amp to really pull it together for this purpose and I gather it's selling extremely well. Any other manufacturers care to take notice? There's only a huge market here waiting to be tapped.
              Herewith, a quick review of the essentials and what it could do still better. (1) The amp has an "EQ" knob that takes you from a mid-60s Fender sound on the left to a late-60s Marshall sound on the right. The Fender sound is surprisingly convincing but too thin in the upper midrange - which needs to be beefed up. (2) The amp makes a farting noise whenever it is switched off. The addition of a circuit costing only a few dollars would fix this. This amp should be aimed at pros as well as kids starting out. Everyone needs something like this. (3) The Blackstar EH-1 head is better than the EH-1 combo, which has an inadequate 8-inch speaker. All amps need a 10-inch speaker to come alive - or a 12 or 15, if you prefer the sound of them. (4) At 1 watt, the EH-1 is STILL TOO LOUD for the living room - at least if you want that bit of bluesy distortion, or more. Some people are claiming it lacks "clean headroom", but this is a myth - it has plenty of clean headroom. Any company thinking of making one of these should reduce the power output to 1/2 watt or maybe 1/4 watt. Will Blackstar again get there first? In the meantime, this is the only major production amp of its kind. The revolution of micro-powered amps is beginning.

              Comment on this review

              (16 of 19 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Great Low-Wattage Home/Studio Amp Head

              By aj-jTDCy

              from Hometown of W.C. Handy - the "Father of the Blues"

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I like the HT-1 head. Like stated earlier, when paired with the components of your choice in the front, it has a very decent-sounding clean channel to make what you feed it sound just as good. Just remember the old caveat, GIGO, and you will do fine if you're wanting to jam live in your bedroom, studio, or the basement with your buddies. The amp is loud for what you expect for a 1-watt rating. Actually, I prefer two of these in my den, with the previously-mentioned Ampeg cabinets, or a couple of Bogner Alchemist 2 x 12 cabinets, when playing or recording that I do the pair of Blackstar HT-5 5-watt heads I also have. You can achieve a nice clean sound for your pedals out of either, but you can overdrive the power amp section before you overdrive your neighbors like you do with the 5-watt versions. If I had to let a pair go, it would be the HT-5's, so the HT-1's are a keeper in my book. They fall short in a few areas, but for what's out there right now, they rank pretty high on the desirability scale for this specific application. When, oh when, will someone realize, and offer to fill, the need for a fully-featured, fractional-watt, tube amp head/combo. Series and parallel effects loops, 0.1- to 5-watt power rating, 3-4 channels, full tone controls for each channel, separate power settings on each channel, MIDI, and all the other features of a quality amp head or combo. Throw everything in there, but let me blast the thing in my den with that creamy overdriven sound you only get when you fully saturate the preamp and power amp sections, at a level I, and everyone else in and around the house, can easily endure. Make it. I don't really care what it costs, within reason, or who makes it, as long as it doesn't leave me wanting for features I need to do it my way. I'll pay for it - gladly. I'll get four of them for my home studio and divest myself of at least 12 short stacks, half stacks, combos, and various heads. Keep the powerful pieces for when power is needed, which is out of the house and home studio. Fill the same needs you'd need in larger venues, in my home studio. I will be a happy man - forever and a day. Surely someone sees the need; it's always been there. I've been a proponent for low-wattage tube amps forever, for this very reason. It's about time someone fills that need. Blackstar is halfway there. Build what everyone wants, whether they realize it or not. Once it's out there, people will get a taste and have to satisfy it. Whoever steps up to the plate will be the winner for their whole line of products. Anyone listening? Please? I've been waiting 40 years, and things are starting to come around to what guitarist need for home playing. Let's get this job finished while I'm still playing. Blackstar: you're fairly new in the arena of amp makers, while you bring tons of experience to the plate from former affiliations, so why not take that knowledge of the needs of a top-of-the-line amp and disseminate those features all the way down through your line of products. Damn the torpedoes and the costs. Give us what we need, and we'll come running to your corner. Like I said, you are halfway there at the bottom, and right up there at the top. Make a fully-loaded fractional-wattage amp for guys and girls to dime the controls across the board and add all the benefits of all the features found in the flagship models. Extend the features of your top series all the way down through the fractional-wattage units, and people will buy it. Low-wattage players need a flagship too.
              Features are a little light on this amp head. It really isn't much more than Blackstar's similarly-designed pedal with the addition of reverb - a nice touch, but don't let the digital-stereo reverb addition get you all excited, as it did me, because the reverb, as nice as it sounds, is not up to par for a "reverb" you would expect to be getting on an amp head. It is weak and sounds as if it barely gets to 4 on a regular reverb. No effects loop. External input for MP3 player, etc., is a 1/4" jack, not the 1/8" TRS you would expect. Yes, adapters are made, but the average person is going to plug in an MP3 player, CD player, notebook, etc., and the 1/8" would of made a lot more sense. Only one speaker out jack that is a 4 - 16 Ohm jack. No mention of an impedance-sensing feature, just implied. Two jacks would of been appreciated, as well as different jacks in a setup similar to the HT-5 head, of which I own 2 of those as well, the earlier ones without the reverb. Nice, but I like the sound of a pair of these, front-ended with pedals/floorboards of choice, into a pair of nice cabs. I have them paired with the new Ampeg 1 x 12 Celestion Vintage 30 speaker cabs, driven in stereo with a Boss ME-70 floorboard fed with a TS9 and Crybaby 535Q - sweet sounds await you when plugging into this setup with a nice clean sound dialed on the HT-1. Overdrive channel is a little noisy, but usable for limited overdrive sounds of usable quality. Noise gate/compressor should be first in your line of fire to feed this capable mini-head's second channel.
              Blackstar is putting out some quality amps and heads. Cabinets, unless you pop for the top-of-the-line models are less than stellar in construction and speaker selection. Celestion 70/80's seem to have a love/hate relationship with a lot of guitarists. I'll pass on them for what sounds I like to chase. MDF cabinets will never hold up to their multi-ply plywood counterparts. However, the heads are beautiful, both in appearance and build quality. Just a bunch of Marshall guys doing it on their own terms. Good for them, and us. Mostly.
              When you consider you're getting a head with a power amp section; even if it is low wattage, for the price of a good pedal, you can't complain. However, 2 1/2 Franklins gives a fellow a few other options. Make sure this is what you want, and play through one if you can before purchasing. Of course, you can always take advantage of the return policy, if you don't mind paying the return shipping. Decent value overall.

              Comment on this review

              (6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

               
              4.0

              A little monster!!!

              By Mandoman-3LWRF

              from sunny Arizona

              Comments about Blackstar HT Series HT-1RH 1W Tube Guitar Amp Head:

              I use this amp as a bedroom practice amp and it sounds great! I don't use the overdrive channel much and it is a little hissy but the clean channel is terrific. The clean channel spans the range from clean, (DUH!) to quite a bit of crunch, particularly with humbuckers. The ISF control seems to me to be just a tone control but I do use it with noticeable effect. I also like the reverb, think it sounds nice, and is another feature not usually found on a small amp. I have also used the headphone jack and, again, found that it is voiced pretty well. I have the head and use it with some small speaker cabinets I have built. As you can tell I am quite impressed with this amp.
              It has a lot of features for such a small amp
              I have had no problems so far in the 2 months that I have had it.
              I thought it was pricey at first but now that I know how good it sounds I think it is a pretty good deal!

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