If you have recently switched from acoustic guitars to electric guitars, you must have noticed that Electric guitars have better audio output than acoustic guitars. But if you feel the need to add an AMP, you might be wondering will an acoustic amp work with electric guitar.
Yes, an acoustic amp can work with electric guitar. But you might don’t get the desired sound as the acoustic amp has the infrastructure to work for an acoustic guitar.
In the article, I will share some practical options you can consider and how you can make it work smoothly.
Difference Between Acoustic and Electric AMP
It seems like both the acoustic and electrical amp should perform similar functions. The general purpose of the AMP is to bring loudness and clearness to your audio but how they do so makes a fortune of difference.
Acoustic guitars have simple infrastructure so does the acoustic AMP. Their prime purpose is to bring clarity and transparency to the passing signal.
On the other hand, electric guitars have complex builds, including transducers and amplifiers. An electric amp also works accordingly. The prime goal of an electrical amp is to alter the sound by adding loudness, gain, and various other effects.
Working of an Acoustic Guitar
Acoustic guitars are simple and vintage forms of guitar present today.
The acoustic guitar produces a mellow sound via its hollow body that you can enjoy in solitude or small studio settings.
You pluck a string. It sends out vibrations via a bridge to the inner body. When it reaches the hollow interior, waves collide with the walls molded into the specific structure to produce sound.
If you are addressing a crowd, you may need an amplifier because resonations from the hollow chambers are not capable of a loud sound.
Working of an Acoustic AMP
The prime purpose of an acoustic amp is quite clear. It more or less acts as a loudspeaker that delivers clear output without making any revisions.
At the same time, if you want to rephrase your audio, this is the feature that an acoustic amp doesn’t offer.
Working of an Electric Guitar
Electric guitars and AMPs differ from each other by 180 degrees. Electric guitars have a naturally loud sound. They produce tunes by transducers and amplifiers already present in their frames.
When you pluck a string wave of magnetic induction starts in your guitar, which travels from the pickup and reaches the output jack. It produces a decent amplitude note. But to enhance it further, you can connect your guitar to the AMP.
Working of Electric AMP
AMP takes in the signal from the guitar and boosts it. Electric amps can alter the incoming input by speed, tone, and volume.
You can personalize it according to your preferences. It provides vast choices between stereo, studio, jazz, and rock. In nutshell, electric amps more or less work as audio editors for live and record performances.
Can I Use An Acoustic AMP with an Electric Guitar?
There is no problem with using an acoustic amp with electric guitar. But from the differences, it is clear that acoustic amps cannot serve the same purpose as an electric amp.
Using an acoustic amp will louden your output, but if you want to boost and refine the audio, you will need an electric amp.
You can take other alternatives to boost the signal that can somehow eliminate the need for an amp.
Alternative Ways To Amplify an Electric Guitar
Electric AMP is an expensive gadget, but it is a must-have while mentioning that there are many options you can consider meanwhile. I will not say that they can replace the need for an AMP to cent percent. But they can cover some portion till you arrange an amp for yourself.
Options include a home stereo system, audio editing software, and earphones for your phone and laptop.
Use of Home Stereo System
Let me start with the most obvious option. Before looking for the complex and tricky to set alternates, give an eye to your home stereo system.
All you need is a high-quality audio cable and an adapter. Audio systems have a variety of input jacks ranging from 1/4 inches to 1/8 inches. You can accordingly buy the adapter in the range of 0.32 to 0.64 cm.
Once the adapter you have connected to the stereo, you can synchronize your guitar. You can adjust the volume levels afterward. It offers much more flexibility than an acoustic amp in molding the output by utilizing the tone settings on your stereo.
Use of Headphones
Intermission issues are the leading cause you want to use an AMP with your guitar. The use of headphone amps can be a capable option to tackle these issues.
A headphone amp is a cheap option in comparison to an original amp. It will give you a toned volume and efficiently tackle the latency issues. There are many options available in the market to meet your budget and studio needs all at once.
Bluetooth headphones are one of the highly-rated headphone amps available. They are easy to carry around, lightweight, and give decent output while efficiently addressing the audio output issues.
Sync Your Phone to the Speakers
This option may be surprising for some of you. But if you don’t have an amp available at hand right now, you can utilize your phone’s speaker as the output. To do so, first, you need to connect the phone and the guitar.
Once you establish a connection, the next thing is to install an amplifier on your phone. Many apps are available on AppStore and play store, but Amplitube and Bias FX are the best-rated apps. They have enough user-friendly settings to meet your needs.
The Downside of Phone Amps
Phone amps can be a preferable option, but if you are using them with Bluetooth speakers, they can cause a lot of lag in the form of latency. It can be confusing and irritating at the same time to hear the beats long after you have plucked the string.
Another point that you must keep in view is the frequency handling capability of your phone speaker (if you are using a phone speaker). Phone speakers can handle sound between 50 to 90 decibels. On the other hand, the guitar’s frequency goes beyond this limit.
The exceeding capacity can deform your phone’s speaker over time.
Use of Audio Editing Software
Audio editing software like Audacity can provide an excellent substitution for Electric amps in recording sessions. You can install the software on your laptop or computer.
Connect your guitar to the laptop, and here you have two options. Either you can use an external microphone or a laptop’s mic, but I will recommend using an external microphone to avoid distortions.
After defining your input and output next step is setting the software. You can choose between different choices such as bass, jazz, and pop or manually set the frequency. You can edit and cut out the unwanted parts that need toning.
Will an Electric Amp Work With an Acoustic Guitar?
This question might pop into your mind, can AMPs work the other way round? Yes, you can connect your acoustic guitar to the electric AMP. Many of you might be thinking that an electric amp provides rich features to your acoustic amp, which is not the case.
Both the guitars have their structures and capabilities. If you connect your acoustic guitar to the electric amp, it will never replicate an acoustic amp, nor your acoustic amp can produce electric guitar-like effects.
Electric amps have built-in loudspeakers, and they have extra bass. On the other hand, acoustic guitars are soft and quiet. So connecting it to the electric guitar will produce distortions, and you get the final output as palpitating beats instead of a steady tune.
Do Acoustic And Electric Guitars Need Different Amps?
Yes, acoustic and electric guitars need different amplifiers, especially for them. Both the guitars carry contrasting workings and infrastructures. AMP working fine for one guitar may distort the output quality of the other guitar completely.
What is the Difference Between an Acoustic AMP and an Electric Guitar AMP?
Both the AMPS serve different purposes. Electric AMP processes and amplifies electrical signals while giving more room for editing the tone of the output. On the other hand, an acoustic amp processes manual signals and work to louden and clear the output signal only.
Do All Amps Work With All Guitars?
Yes, all AMPS can work with all guitars. But what matters is their output quality. A Bass or acoustic AMP cannot give you the same results with electric guitar as an electric AMP, so you should use similar amps.
What is the Point of an Acoustic AMP?
The purpose of an acoustic amp is to amplify the output of an acoustic guitar in terms of volume and quality. You can use the acoustic guitar to make your guitar sound more sharp and deep.
AMPs work to enhance the volume and bring clarity to the tune of your guitar. But AMPs can vary in function depending on their specialty, for example, an acoustic amp processes manual signals. On the other hand, electric AMP and Bass AMPs work best with electric signals and bass.
It is a frequently asked question, can you use an acoustic amp with an electric guitar and vice versa. Technically you can use different amps, but you should not use them. An AMP working like magic for one guitar may distort your tune if it does not match your guitar.
You should go for the matching AMP. Meanwhile, there are many other options that you can try in place of an AMP.