NAMM 2022: "It’s a design I’ve been building towards for the past 30 years" – BluGuitar's hugely ambitious AMP X pedal amp nears completion

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NAMM 2022: If 2022 is the year pedal amps truly arrive, Thomas Blug has been waiting for everyone else to catch up for a while. His BluGuitar has been at the forefront of making guitar rigs compact without a compromise on power. Now the AMP X could be his ultimate vision of it. 

The AMP X is a 100-watt, 'neural analogue' and fully programmable guitar amp and more in pedal format, and has been in development for over five years. We first reported on it two years ago at the 2020 NAMM but it's still a work in progress. 

"This amp marks the end of a journey for me in a way – it’s a design I’ve been building towards for the past 30 years,” says BluGuitar founder and CEO Thomas Blug. 

The overall concept is a player's entire guitar rig can be in one AMP X 6.5lbs unit. And it's certainly not the first to promise such a thing, but the claim is that the AMP X, when complete, can be programmed to recreate any valve guitar amp, and will offer a growing collection of classics alongside cabs and effects.


(Image credit: BluGuitar)

You can see Thomas talk through the features in the video above but such is the ambition of AMP X, a release date is still TBH. "It's a long journey and the journey will still continue for a bit," says Thomas. "But for me it's important to show the AMP X is really happening."

We have to admire Blug's commitment and ambition here, to make sure his vision of the ultimate portable rig is fulfilled. And while the AMP X is designed to be a one-stop live solution with traditional amp-esque controls, its front panel flap reveals deeper editing parameters with a display for the studio. 

This balance effectively allows player to edit their presets quickly to their live surroundings too. But the technology behind it is complex. 

The AMP X is described by Blug as an 100-watts nanotube amp, offering the headroom to allow it to run an array of power amp recreations. But Blug promises that the parameters will leave things wide open; it can be anything from a 5-watt amp. In the video above also explains how the analogue features of AMP X, and we're interested to see how the digital effects will be integrated in the finished product. 

More info at BluGuitar

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.