Review: Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge Guitar Amp

(Image credit: Fishman)

Some of the most awesome benefits of an acoustic guitar are its portability and ability to be played almost anywhere (other than underwater). Unfortunately, however, in some cases, an acoustic guitar simply isn’t always loud enough. The Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge is the perfect companion for an acoustic-electric guitar when you want to be able to perform anywhere and be heard loud and clear without having to haul around a bunch of gear.

Featuring a rechargeable battery, compact dimensions, light weight and a ton of awesome features, the Loudbox Mini Charge delivers all the pro performance benefits of an acoustic guitar amp in a package you can carry anywhere in one hand.

FEATURES The Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge is a 60-watt combo amp with a 6.5-inch woofer and 1-inch soft dome tweeter that produces an impressive 108dB SPL at one meter. At slightly more than 21 pounds, the amp weighs about the same as a guitar in a hardshell case and measures less than one square foot. The rechargeable battery lasts anywhere from four (maximum volume) to 18 (low volume) hours, and a wall charger is included (an optional 12-volt car charger also is available).

Separate instrument and mic channels allow users to amplify both an acoustic-electric guitar and vocals, and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity allows the Loudbox to amplify backing tracks from a smart phone. The instrument channel provides a ¼-inch input, gain, low, mid, high, digital reverb and chorus controls and phase switch, while the mic channel features an XLR input and gain, low, high and reverb controls. Separate LEDs monitor full power, low power and charging modes. Other features include a DC input that allows for using the amp plugged in or while charging, a 1/8-inch Aux input for line-level stereo audio sources and a Mix D.I. output that sends the output of the instrument and mic channels, Bluetooth and Aux to an external mixer or recorder.

PERFORMANCE The volume output of the Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge would be impressive for a regular plugged-in amp more than twice its size, but considering this amp can be played anywhere for hours on a single charge, it’s the perfect solution for street performers or even impressing friends around a campfire. The reverb and chorus effects add a professional polish, and the EQ controls are tuned to a very useful range for dialing in stellar acoustic guitar and vocal tones.

LIST PRICE: $657.83

● The rechargeable battery lasts anywhere from 4 to 18 hours and can be fully recharged in about 10 hours.

● Two separate instrument and microphone channels, each with reverb (plus chorus for the instrument channel) provide pro quality sound.

THE BOTTOM LINE If you love to play acoustic guitar in the great outdoors but still want to be heard loud and clear, the Fishman Loudbox Mini Charge provides the ultimate combination of sound quality, volume output and portability.

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Chris Gill

Chris is the co-author of Eruption - Conversations with Eddie Van Halen. He is a 40-year music industry veteran who started at Boardwalk Entertainment (Joan Jett, Night Ranger) and Roland US before becoming a guitar journalist in 1991. He has interviewed more than 600 artists, written more than 1,400 product reviews and contributed to Jeff Beck’s Beck 01: Hot Rods and Rock & Roll and Eric Clapton’s Six String Stories.