Yamaha THR-5 Review

Bottom Line

If you need a very portable amplifier for your home or RV or when you travel, this is a great choice.

If you need a great sounding battery powered amp, this is a fantastic choice.

If you want a modeling amp that is also a sound card / interface, this is an excellent choice. Just a laptop and this unit and you’d have a complete recording studio.

It works great with Cubase and sounds fine miked. It is NOT on par with my Fender GTX-50 but for a tiny 10w amp its superb. This amp will not replace my Fender.

I highly recommend installing all software. the modeling editor really makes this amp shine.

Full Review

I have been using a Royer R-10 ribbon mic + Royer dBooster and a Shure SM-57 on a fantastic Fender Mustang GTX-50 50 watt amp for two years. I run those mics through an SSL2+ and then Cubase. For most songs this has been great but in some cases, the sound is muddy or noisy. The Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin with single P90 makes a lot of noise and feedback, but its become my favorite guitar.

In one of my recording books they mentioned that sometimes miking a smaller amp is needed. This is why I purchased the THR-5. I did not want high power, but I did want full sound at low power. I also wanted battery power so I can avoid line noise. Finally, stereo is best since I record left and right channels into the SSL2+

The THR-5 is just a bit bigger than a lunchbox

I’ve only recorded one song but I do like this little amp. It is not at all the same as a single speaker amp, so buyer beware – you need to try this and compare against other amps. This little amp will not replace the Fender. I think its important to realize that at 50 watts, the Fender has a lot more headroom. The Yamaha had the clean sound and will solve my “sometimes” problem with the Fender. It also will most likely be the go to amp for my Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin. The Godin through the Fender is a noise machine, but is tamed through the Yamaha.

Miking the THR-5

My first impression is to use the Yamaha on the Godin and my cello – both get noisy or muddy with the Fender, and other instruments through the Fender. But I also have never played too much with the Fender settings.

Listen to “Less is More” – recorded from the. Yamaha, and then “Archtop” recorded using the Fender. You can hear the noise of the Godin and the bottom end muddiness of the cello. But the Fender has a grittier, maybe fuller? sound. I think using both amps will be the winning idea. Maybe Godin rhythm playing through the Yamaha THR and lead in the Fender Mustang. I’ll experiment.

The song “Decisive Moment” is all recorded through the THR-5 as an interface, except the vocals which were recorded through my UA 276.

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