Mini Amp Docs
The Memphis Mini Blues Harp Amplifier
Congratulations for choosing the Memphis Mini amp! We know you will love it: the Memphis Mini has a full, crunchy, colorful tone very similar to the tweed amps of the 1950s. It is one of the coolest sounds in all of blues music, a real vintage vibe. Your amp is specifically tuned for blues harmonica, and it is suitable for practice, recording, or performing in any venue.
The Memphis Mini was designed with two goals in mind: tone and value. Every circuit component was judged for its tone. The cab was chosen for its combination of sturdiness, appearance and value. We chose items that were economical, to be sure, but they deliver the tone and quality we were after. Other amps like this cost twice as much, but we think they do not sound any better. And the bottom line for any amp is the sound.
Minor cosmetic imperfections on the amp are normal and expected. The Memphis Mini amp is a great tool for serious players. It is gig- or studio-ready.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE
Save all the packing materials!
Connect your harp microphone to the amp via the INPUT jack on the top panel. The jack accepts a ¼-inch phone plug, like on a typical guitar cable. If your harp microphone is wired for low impedance it will have a different connector and you will need a converter. I use the Audix T-50K converter and I recommend it, but there are many other good products out there.
Switch the amp on and wait for the tubes to warm up. This will take about one minute. Make sure the volume and tone controls are set low at first. Increase the settings as needed after the amp is ready.
USING THE LINE OUT
The Memphis Mini amp has a line out feature that allows you to easily connect the amp to a PA sound system so you can be heard in any venue, no matter how large. It sends a line level signal from the amp. Use a regular instrument cable with ¼-inch phone plugs. The line out jack is on the underside of the circuit chassis on the back of the amp. You can see the jack if you look inside the amp between the back panels. It is straight down from the On/Off switch. Plug the cable into a Mic or Line input on the PA mixer, or ask the sound guy at the gig to take care of it.
I start with the settings on the mixer channel all “flat”, or straight up. PA systems and speakers tend to sound bright, so I sometimes boost the lows and roll off the mids and highs in the mixer channel. I recommend you send just a little of the signal to the monitors: too much and it may cause feedback.
PLAYING THE AMP
This is the ultimate grab-n-go amp! Great tone in a small 18-pound package. When practicing at home I usually dial the volume and tone to 3. When gigging I always use the line out and set the volume on 7 and adjust the tone to suit the room. Your settings may vary a lot because of room acoustics and your personal tastes.
The Memphis Mini amp has a wonderful crunch when you attack with more than one reed. Open your playing aperture a bit to allow adjacent reeds to play on a draw note. Hit it a little harder on the attack and then quickly drop to normal pressure. This is one way to get the crunch and color you hear in the example videos at the Memphis Blues Amps website. This amp loves the overtones generated by multiple reeds!
All harp amps feed back at higher volumes. Feedback has seldom been an issue with the Memphis Mini amp. If you are playing in a small room with reflective surfaces the amp may begin to feed back. Reduce the volume and tone. Try pointing the amp away from you. Work on your mic cupping technique to isolate the mic from the sound of the amp. Move to a larger space.
If you are playing in a club and you hear feedback, try the solutions mentioned above and also consult the sound guy. The most likely culprit is too much harp signal in the monitors.
Very little maintenance is required. When you receive the amp it is a good idea to make sure the four screws securing the chassis are tight. They can sometimes work loose during shipping. Check to see if the speaker is solidly attached to the baffle. Do NOT overtighten! That could damage the speaker and/or strip the screw holes.
The fuse is accessed at the bottom of the chassis in the back of the amp. It is a F2A250V fuse. Fast acting 2 amp 250 volt.
WARRANTY AND SERVICE
The Memphis Mini amp comes with a limited warranty for the period of one year from the date of new shipment. There is a 90 day limited warranty on tubes and speaker subject to approval. Any modification to the amp or abuse will void the warranty. Shipping for warranty is the responsibility of the buyer.
DO NOT return the amp unless you have first obtained an RMA (Return Merchandise Authorization). No exceptions! You may contact us three ways:
Call or text 530-408-6710, or
In the case of a return, shipping costs are not refundable.
Thank you again for choosing the Memphis Mini amp! Please feel free to contact me with any comments or questions you may have. I’ve gigged the amp extensively for the last four years. It has delivered fantastic tone and dynamics every time, even when being used by different players in every set of a raucous blues jam. I’ll be happy to help you get the most from this great little harp amp.
Sheridan Wyoming USA