Seriously, What is the fuzz so big about the Blackstar Id:Core stereo 20? Being an hardass valve amp user for past years, I came to figure out the truth by myself last year, and here is the official review from me about the ID core 20! This would also give you a good idea about the popular Id series on the blackstar’s most affordable amp models take a major share on the solid state industry world wide.
What is it all about The ID?
Stereo? Yes,that is what I am talking about.This small box is coming with 2 speakers with 10 watts in each,and the 2*5 inch speakers are very capable to deliver the tight sound you need.It has all the standard inputs and outputs of an amp, and more surprisingly it has an usb audio interface to record at your home!The amp has tonality of rock to all heavy and standard fx in built to bypass the need of an additional processor! This can be a starters dream of having an amp and fx all in one box.
- Stereo and portable 20 watt speakers with dual amplification .
- ISF tone shaping, make it sound like british to america!
- 6 Channels/patches to select : Clean Warm, Clean Bright, Crunch, Super Crunch, OD 1, OD 2
- Standard modulation effects, Delay and reverb , 12 in total. And they are all stereo,there is a tap tempo control whenever you need.
- All 6 channels are programmable , you can store your tones.
- The Optional FS-11 footswitch will let you control the amp all by foot!
- USB port: Home recording goes easy!
- Speaker emulated line out: Practice with headphones, or record or go live with it or anything!
- Stereo MP3/Line In , for practicing with songs and even listening to songs as it is all stereo and wide!
- BLACKSTAR INSIDER software gives you more – deep editing of your amp, exchanging sounds with the Blackstar Online Community and downloading artist patches.
Even this is a budget amp, Blackstar does not make it light, it has the standard compact design and the materials always used by them. The amp is very easy to carry anywhere you want as well, the corners are bound with clamps/protection bumpers to protects from bumps and surges on the road.
Now to the final question, does too many features in a box make it sound tiny? Exactly no. The clean channels are just great, you can make it ring and bell and boom. If you want to play rock and blues, the crunch channels nail it, very interesting that it has the bite and the punch with the crunch. And finally the OD1 and OD2 is all about being Rock and to metal high gain stuff,very good low and midrange. All these channels are adjustable with a gain and the ISF knob for tonality adjustments. Just a small drawback is lead sounds a bit fizzy, which is adjustable by the eq and the effect controls to smoothen it. But hey..a very neglectable issue for the great affordable price!
As a beginner it is hard to figure out a budget for an effect/ processor unit and also an amp, and I wish the ID core had been there 15 years back, because it gives you the full capability to have them both in 1 single units price. The ID Core stereo costs approximately 15000 BDT. If you are looking for even lower budget amp with fx, there is ID core 10 just about 11000 BDT.And there is also the big 40 watt option for 24000 BDT.(All prices are approximate and subject to change from stock lot and tax) .
I would personally recommend the ID Core 10 and 20 for practice sessions, 20 watt with line out if you want to use it in live shows, and the 40 watt to use with a cabinet mic.
So let us think less about the budget and start playing with the most affordable great amps from the ID series!
by Sazzad Arefeen
Official Dealer of all Blackstar amps is World Music in Bangladesh.