As seen in Guitar Girl Magazine Issue 14 – New York-inspired
We reviewed the Spark 40-watt combo amp by Positive Grid, which works with electric and acoustic guitar as well as bass, and right out of the box, it was fun to get into.
The built-in presets and onboard control knobs allow for a quick plug-and-play. Two onboard full-range stereo speakers and a bass port forgoing the tweeter give the Spark a good overall sound and a big bottom kick, making it a valuable option for bass players.
It’s a really portable practice amp (twelve pounds) that doubles as a Bluetooth speaker, sporting a thick carrying strap and sleek low profile. Hook a phone or tablet up to it with your playlists, and you have a high-quality wireless speaker option that’s loud enough for most sized rooms and applications. If we’d request any future upgrades, it would be a battery compartment, so it can be taken off the grid, and a footswitch for changing between the four-channel presets.
Auto Chords, an app that offers features for learning, jamming, and more, allows players to see the chords to a song laid out in real time and play along. They can also slow down tempos and loop songs to learn at their own pace. The addition of the Smart Jam is cool to use for songwriting, soloing practice, jam session, or woodshedding ideas: you start by tapping out a wanted tempo, play a few chords over it, and the Spark will come up with an individualized backing track with drums and bass accompaniment.
The Spark also triples as a basic home recording studio interface, where all you need is a computer, USB cable, the Spark, and a pair of headphones. You can record and mix your guitar or bass as a mono track and monitor your playback through the amp. A copy of PreSonus Studio One Prime recording software is included with the purchase, or you can use the Spark App, which we found to have an intuitive and easy-to-use interface. You can easily access and scroll through all the guitar amp modeling and multi-effects options through a clean, intelligent Graphical User Interface. There’s an ever-growing 10,000 tones through Positive Grid’s BIAS engine to play with, including guitar and bass presets from established players and tone creations by other users sorted by genre.
There’s certainly a lot in this powerful compact package at a low price for those who want a great-sounding practice amp, learn a massive song library, or write songs. If only we had this kind of amp available to us back in the day…
List price: $299.00
For more info: positivegrid.com/spark