NAMM 2024: “Not just an upgrade but a complete reinvention”: Vox debuts the amPlug3 travel amp in 7 classic guitar and bass amp-channeling forms

Vox Amplug3
(Image credit: Vox Amps)

Vox has just launched the third generation of its nifty pocket-sized travel amp, the amPlug3. Smaller than your average pedal and sitting at the end of the 3/4" jack input, the latest version – announced ahead of NAMM 2024 – adds new features to its seven-strong range.

Each mini amp is designed specifically for use with headphones, much to the delight of your neighbours. The range sets out to authentically emulate a host of classic amps.

Every model comes with two channels and up to four effects including tremolo, chorus, reverb and delay. They too come with in-built rhythm patterns for solo practices, something which was exclusive to Gen two’s bass model.

Another new feature comes in the form of smartphone connectivity via AUX, making it easier than ever to jam along to your favourite songs. Although, in light of many modern phones being bereft of aux inputs, an adapter via your charging port may be needed. Alternatively, the Aux can be used for recording.

There are also tempo controls as Vox aims to create inspiring and dynamic practice sessions for all players. The compact, battery-powered amps can rotate 180 degrees, working around the positioning of your instrument’s control knobs and whether you’re sat or stood.

For Vox, this latest version is "not just an upgrade – it's a complete reinvention and your solution for practicing anytime, anywhere." Each comes with a two-year warranty and is expected to cost around $35, in line with previous generations.

The range is split between guitar (five) and bass (two) tailored amps and is made up of the AC30, UK Drive, US Silver, Boutique, High Gain, Bass, and Modern Bass. It’s worth noting there are some slight variances between the models in terms of effects and features, which we’ve detailed below.

The AC30 model replicates Vox's legendary amp through nuanced analog circuitry, with channel one offering a warm tone, which is greatly boosted on channel two. It features all four effects and a metronome and its rhythm options vary from rock, blues and pop to funk, metal and jazz.

Then there's the one-two of the UK Drive and US Silver, which, between them, aim to mimic British classic rock tones and American combo amps. The UK Drive's channels are split between Marshall-esque warmth and sharp distortion, whilst the US Silver, tailored for jazz and blues, offers a warm clean on and a rich drive with its two channels.

There is no tremolo effect with the UK Drive; the US Silver offers the full suite. While the former offers rock, metal and blues rhythms as your jam companions the US Silver offers jazz, disco and pop.

If you're after silky cleans and a "luminous" overdrive, then the modern/vintage blending Boutique will be your pocket-amp of choice. It has chorus, delay and reverb effects and a range of rhythm patterns which range from rock to funk.

Its guitar range is rounded out by the High Gain, for those who love a guitar tone that'd beat you up for your lunch money. Channel one dials in a pristine clean, with full-blooded and contemporary distortion on channel two. There's no tremolo effect, and its rhythms range from blues to metal, so unfortunately there will be no brutal disco jams with this model.

Over on the bass guitar side, it's a case of vintage versus modern. The Bass – and we wonder how long it took to come up with that name – is naturally built for lower frequencies and offers a built-in compressor and chorus, reverb and delay effects to add to a wide-range channel one and a punchy, overdriven channel two. Get your jazz, funk and rock on via its practice rhythms.

Alternatively, the Modern Bass is all about brightness and clarity with channel one, and modern and assertive high-gain distortion on its second channel. The rhythm options include fusion and metal and, while offering "integrated effects", these are not mentioned at this time.

The amPlug3 range has been launched alongside a new AC Hand-Wired series, which promises to be the ultimate recreation of the company's most iconic guitar amps.

To keep up to date with the latest gear news and releases, with NAMM 2024 coming fast, head over to our guide to the latest NAMM 2024 news.

For more information on all things Vox, head to VoxAmps.com .

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Phil Weller

A freelance writer with a penchant for music that gets weird, Phil is a regular contributor to Prog, Guitar World, and Total Guitar magazines and is especially keen on shining a light on unknown artists. Outside of the journalism realm, you can find him writing angular riffs in progressive metal band, Prognosis, in which he slings an 8-string Strandberg Boden Original, churning that low string through a variety of tunings. He's also a published author and is currently penning his debut novel which chucks fantasy, mythology and humanity into a great big melting pot.