Loudbox Mini Charge – New for 2018, and The Reviews are Coming In!
In the March issue of Guitar Player magazine, reviewer Jimmy Leslie summed up our newest Loudbox by saying, “Fishman’s Loudbox Mini Charge is a great-sounding little amp that delivers a ton of mobile tone for the buck.”
The review is thoughtful and thorough, starting with a basic overview of the amplifier. “… the Mini Charge is an exciting prospect because battery power and Bluetooth connectivity promise a troubadour’s dream—cutting the cord without tonal sacrifice.
“At first glance, the Mini Charge appears similar to the standard Loudbox Mini with a different cosmetic makeup… The basic layout remains the same. The guitar channel has controls for Gain, Low, Mid, High, Reverb, and Chorus, plus a phase button. The mic channel offers an XLR input, and the same controls sans Mid and Chorus.
“Upon unboxing, I did not connect the power cord. I flipped the power switch, and much to my delight a pair of green lights appeared—one next to the Master volume indicating power on, and another above it indicating the Mini Charge was indeed running on its battery.”
With the basics handled, as one would expect from “GP,” reviewer Jimmie Leslie then goes in deep. “I used three instruments to check the guitar tones: A Fender Paramount Travel with an onboard Fishman PM system, a Taylor 514ce equipped with a Fishman Prefix system, and a Breedlove Legacy Concertina. Vocal tests came courtesy of Sennheiser e835 and Carvin M50 dynamic microphones. With all the main control knobs set at noon for a taste of the Mini Charge’s basic guitar flavor, the most striking aspect was its plentiful low end packing a focused, distinctly closed-back style tonal punch—regardless of which guitar. One simply doesn’t expect such beefy bass from an amp with a 6.5” woofer. And girth doesn’t come at the expense of clarity. The tone sounds wonderfully pure and naturally present across a broad sonic spectrum. There’s plenty of power to fill a small space while maintaining good headroom and a very low noise floor.”
Leslie then takes readers through detailed descriptions of the individual guitar’s performance though the Loudbox Mini Charge, “When I tried the Taylor using a Fishman Blackstack passive soundhole pickup that was a bit softer than the onboard Prefix pickup [on that same guitar], I obtained the extra low-end punch and top-end sparkle I was listening for via the Mini Charge’s Low and High controls. All the EQ knobs are very responsive…”
The second half of the review delves into battery life, Bluetooth connectivity and implementation, effects, headroom, charging and other real-life concerns a player would anticipate with a portable, battery powered performance amp. The review sums up the Loudbox Mini Charge by saying, “… It’s simply a great-sounding little amp that delivers a ton of mobile tone for the buck. I can’t wait for warmer weather to put it through more paces in some wilderness spaces. The cushy optional deluxe carry bag ($99 street) makes it a breeze to tote the lightweight Mini Charge wherever you roam. The sound of the woods just got a whole lot louder!
“KUDOS: Ultimate busk-ability with battery power and Bluetooth connectivity. Fine tone with bountiful low end surprising for amp this size. CONCERNS: None.
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