Tube sound is typically quite difficult to afford, and it usually takes a serious investment in order to acquire one. But there are exceptions and as always, there are definitely hidden gems on today’s market to be found. And sometimes, such gems are located in front of our noses and produced by the most renowned companies in the world.
And yes, our Fender Blues Jr III review is based on the conclusion that this classic amp fits the description listed above. It is a fine amp that we are very eager to discuss with you. Off to the review now.
Fender Blues Jr III Features
The amp delivers 15 Watts of power to ensure a classic touch-sensitive tube tone with a capability to overdrive very smoothly when cranked up to 11. Also included in the mix is a spring reverb and a foot-switchable FAT boost, a distinctively warm 12AX7 preamp tube overdrive, a set of EL-84 output tubes, a spring reverb, a simple and basic control layout, a highly-sensitive Fender Special Design 12-inch “lightning bolt” Eminence speaker, and a set of heavy duty set screw “chicken head” knobs.
The amp has a single input channel, Volume and Reverb knobs, along with a standard set of Treble, Middle, Bass and Master controls and a neat red light to signalize that the amp is on. In addition, the device is quite lightweight and very portable, yet strong and sturdy enough to be capable of taking a punch or two during transportation or due to frequent use.
Just hear it roar! With a small package and seemingly small power of 15 watts, this thing delivers a thunderous punch for its size and is more than capable of covering your back even at medium to large gigs. You won’t be able to use it on your arena tour, but local gigs are something the Jr III can easily handle.
Much like any other tube amp, this one works best when pushed into overdrive and cranked to 11, so feel free to give it a little extra push to acquire the punch, but DON’T push it too hard, it’s not a 100 watt monster worth several thousand dollars after all. Apart from that, the item delivers a warm bass, quite punchy middles and super bright treble, making the amp ideal for hard rock, blues and classic rock ‘n’ roll music and guitar style.
What we like
We like the overall mix very much. As noted, this just might be the greatest budget-friendly tube amplifier in the world. The sound is stellar, classic tube stuff, the price is very affordable by tube standards, the power is surprising by 15-watt standards, and even the looks are cool, classic Fender package, grill, black leather and overall casing.
Additionally, the amp isn’t too powerful for house practice like larger tube amps that simply cannot shine at low volume, allowing you to use the amp at your home or for smaller band practice sessions and still get great results.
What we don’t like
Some users have been reporting reliability issues with this one. Although we cannot confirm any problems from our experience, users have reported that the amp should be given break times from overdrive mode. If you crank it, don’t crank it for three-hour gigs.
But, and this is a big but – the reliability issues are mostly nothing but minor, we’re not talking exploding amps or anything, and our previous assessment of this Fender dude being the best cheap tube amp in the world still stands solid.
So in a nutshell, if you are looking for a killer tube sound with a reasonable amount of power and a great deal of punch, all packed up with an affordable price, the Fender Blues Jr. III is the choice for you. This amp will pleasantly surprise you with just about every aspect, going from the aforementioned price and sound, through durability and reliability, all the way to portability and light weight. It’s an investment you won’t regret and a step forward in your musical journey, highly recommended and a big thumbs up from here.