The Blackstar HT-20 MKII Combo Electric Guitar Amplifier is a 20 Watt, all-valve beast from Blackstar. Don’t let the diminutive wattage fool you, this amp packs some serious punch. Featuring two channels with four voices you’ll find enough variety of tone to suit any style coupled with the build quality you’d expect from one of the world’s leading manufacturers.
EL84s are at the tonal heart of the HT-20 MkII combo and head. We have used our decades of valve amp design experience to combine the response and character of this classic British valve with a carefully voiced preamp to create wonderfully lush valve tones. From pure boutique cleans, to mild overdrive that cleans up by backing off the guitar volume control, right up to saturated distortion, this amp does it all.
For at home or in the studio the Power Reduction switch takes you down to 2 Watts without any compromise in tone: perfect for driving the EL84 power stage.
Simple and intuitive controls, combined with pro features like our patented ISF control, studio quality reverb, effects loop, XLR D.I. out and USB speaker emulated output, make them perfect for any performance situation – whether you’re in the studio, gigging in front of a small crowd, or playing to thousands.
From chiming ‘boutique’ cleans, to on the edge crunch, or full-on distortion, HT-20 MkII deliver ‘the sound in your head’
All Valve Power
With two EL84 valves in the power amp stage and an ECC83 (12AX7) in the preamp, the HT-20 MKII gives you a tight sound with a chime-like quality. Often found on lower wattage amps, the EL84 valve has plenty of gritty tones and works well in high gain scenarios.
Valve amp owners know well that you have to crank the valves to get the full tonal spectrum from your amplifier but that’s not the case with the HT-20R. Featuring a power output reduction button you can use 10% of the power whilst keeping all of that glorious valve tone, great if you want to practice at home without getting any noise complaints.
Four Expressive Voices
With four different voice options, the HT-20 MKII is ideal for any style or situation giving you great versatility and killer tones. The voices are footswitchable so you can change it up at the click of a button.
The clean channel has two voices, the first is an ‘American’ style sound with more emphasis on the low-mids and a warmer character. Voice 2 is designed to emulate the Class A ‘British’ amplifier sound, a strong midrange and overall more aggressive sound.
The Overdrive channel consists of a ‘Classic’ tone which is the well-known Blackstar ‘British’ overdrive. It cleans up remarkably well and can go all the way to all-out crunch if you need it. The second is a ‘High Gain’ channel which has extra growl in the high end and a tight low end inspired by the Blackstar HT Venue MKII high gain sounds.
Infinite Shape Feature
The HT-20R MKII features Blackstar’s patented Infinite Shape Feature, an addition designed to give you access to a much wider tonal palette than a traditional amplifier circuit. Set to ‘0’ you get an ‘American’ style tone with a tighter focal point. Give it a twist to ’10’ and you get a more ‘British’ tone that’s full of warmth and crunch.
A traditional amplifier has a specific range that it operates within which is what gives you the signature sound of the classic brands. Blackstar have created something wholly different with the ISF knob, so instead of being limited to a specific range built in by the manufacturer, you have access to the full tonal spectrum, resulting in an extremely versatile amplifier that will cater for any occasion and allow you to create your own signature sound.
With the Blackstar HT-20 MKII, you get a tonne of connection options so you’re equipped for any situation from the studio to the stage. With speaker outputs for 1×16 OHM, 1×8 OHM and 2×8 OHM this combo also doubles as a head if you ever need more grunt on larger stages. Alongside these, you have USB Audio and balanced XLR outputs for recording flexibility plus a newly voiced, studio quality reverb.
The HT-20R MkII has two footswitchable Clean Voices, one with an “American” character and the other with a Class A “British” sound.
Voice 1: Voice 1 clean gives a bright and tight tone with a solid bass response, the tone shaping is positioned early in the gain structure for a refined American tone and response.
Voice 2: Voice 2 gives a highly responsive “chime” with a looser, resonant bottom-end for a British tone that can be pushed into a mid-range overdrive when driven hard.
The two footswitchable Overdrive Voices are characterised by a tone which is high in gain, but avoids any of the detached top-end “fizz” often found in other designs.
Voice 1: This is the Classic “British” Blackstar overdrive. Rich and natural it goes all the way to Super Crunch gain but cleans up beautifully
Voice 2: Inspired by the critically acclaimed HT Venue MkII high gain sounds, this overdrive has additional aggression in the high-end with a tight resonant low-end.
The conventional three way guitar EQ network, or tone stack (a.k.a. Bass, Middle and Treble), is a key to the characteristic “voice” of traditional guitar amplifiers. Classic amplifier designs have their own versions of this network which leads to their own tonal voicings. The ISF control allows you to infinitely adjust the response of the tone control network between any of the traditional voicings in a way that has never before been possible. In this way you can design your own sound and truly find ‘the sound in your head’.