The Blackstar ID:15

The Blackstar website says,

The ID:15 boasts many of the same unique features and functionality as the larger ID models but in a compact combo format making it perfect for home recording and practicing.

My first inclination is “challenge accepted” and without reading anything more, I looked at the picture of the ID:15. I thought to myself,

Where is the XLR or DI? Something that claims to be the perfect recording device needs an XLR!

As I read on however, they have something better, a USB port connecting to a Graphic User Interface (GUI) on your computer where you can download tones from the Internet. “Oh!” I said to myself. “That’s right. We are now in the computer age.”

blackstar-id-15The GUI also allows for deep editing and gives you a place to store, share, upload, and download patches. An a all-in-one package, the ID:15 lets you record directly into your computer or to re-amp guitar tracks, play along with your favorite tunes or loop and time-stretch sections for those guitar licks that you can’t quite play up-to-speed.

There is a point of which this is or is not a modeling amp that goes to moot.

First, to be a modeling amp is not a bad thing. It’s just an issue of your preference. Unfortunately, some prefer to verbally attack what they don’t care for.

Moving on.

This is, in fact, a digital amp that is programmable. Sounds like a duck to me so far, but what’s different from your conventional modeling amp is the circuitry. Think of an old rotary phone (if you’re old enough to remember what one looks like) that has been converted to digital sound.

The approach is from the same circuitry one would find in a valve amp but the valve sounds are digitally emulated through the True Valve Power (T.V.P.) knob. The patent-applied-for T.V.P. grants you one step closer to the warm tone you are looking for with the consistency of a solid-state amplifier that promises to be Loud as Valve™.

Standard EQ comes with an additional knob marked ISF. Infinite Shape Feature is meant to give you even further tonal control over the thickness of the gain. 0 mimics the general idea of scooped American distortion, while 10 is the smooth and bold tone of classic British gain.

Together with the T.V.P. knob, I can find a tone in my head that that thrills me everyday of the week.

This is of course after I sift through the non-English speaking voices that resonate inside my head.

With 128 user storable patches, I won’t get bored anytime soon. Unless, there’s a problem with my guitar. (note to self: New pickups for the Jackson). If you’re a person of simple taste, there are six voice channels to select from. Clean Warm, Clean Bright, OD1, OD2, Crunch and Super Crunch.

And if you didn’t catch it the first time, this amp will get as loud as a Valve amp!

Let me know what you think of the Blackstar ID:15 in the comments below.

And, don’t forget to check out The Tone King’s first look at the Blackstar ID:15! 

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Filed Under: FeaturedReviewsAmps


About the Author: Started playing bass at 15. It was Danko Jones who inspired me to play at all, and in a small town I couldn't be picky on what I can get my hands on, so I bought a squire with pride. Obtained a B.C. Rich guitar months later. Moved to the city at 17. At 19 joined my first metal band as a bassist which ended at 20. Joined a bass heavy rock band, which I loved being in whole heartily. I now wait to venture into a new project. For the time being though, I am exploring my abilities as a writer.

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