I just played this head for the first time, and I was honestly FLOORED! I've owned a Dual Rectifier, a Roadster, and a Road King, so I'm familiar with what the Recto tones are about, and this little Recto is the real deal! Plenty of bottom end, the familiar Rectifier chunk, and the clean channel is warm and full of character - I do believe I've found my next amp!
Im no expert. I'll just share my experience. Ive never owned a tube amp. I absolutely love the sound of the dual rectifier, but was a little afraid of the volume as i dont need the cops called everytime i jam. So i musta watched every video there was on the dual rec and mini rec. Wondering how much of that classic sound i would loose buying the mini and would it still be too loud? After months of saving. I just went with it and got the mini. As far as the sound. I am in love. This thing sounds just as i wanted it to. I got the mini rec 1 12 cab and this thing gets loud as f*** to loud to put on the recomeded minimum volume at 4. But i have had great results recording in the 10 wat mode at "bedroom" volume. Im 100% happy with the mini and have no regrets. Glad i dident get the dual rec. Im sure the neighbors are too. Lol.
Articulate tones. Crunchy as hell or clean and shimmery. 2 voicings for each channel and they all are great. Worth every penny. Anyone wondering whether or not this little thing can krank out enough volume to play with your drummer, be assured, it is very friggin loud even at 10w. No problems hanging in a jam what so ever. Also I will not miss lugging a heavy *** 100w around everywhere! The thing ways like 8lbs. Absolutely tubular dude.
Five Stars for The Mini
I have to give this one 5 stars *****, 'cause I can't give it 6 stars ******..
Small Package & Huge Sound!
There are a ton of great reviews on this one, but I still wanted to throw in my $0.02 so I am going to go with some bullets here. Bullets will be easier to write & easier to read, right?
- I can happily confirm that everything you've read about this amp sounding great & sounding an awful lot like its big brother(s) is true. I have had two Rectifiers before & this one reminds me of everything I loved about either of the bigger ones.
- It's small. Like, sure, its mini but still it is smaller than you think. Lighter too. The 'tone per pound of amp' ratio here is crazy high!
- None of the pictures seem to show it, but it has kinda a mean-looking red glow when its turned on. Its pretty awesome. Neat stuff, right?
- I know the "Rectifier" series are known for distorted & heavy tones, but dont sell this little guy short...the clean channel is more impressive than I expected.
- It comes with a case/carrying bag & footswitch.
Exactly what I've always been looking for
Growing up, I always had got by with cheaper amps which had loads of effects onboard. Don't get me wrong, those digital amps are sweet and highly versatile - you can get almost any sound you want out of them; and I still really appreciate them and the learnings they gave me. But, those amps don't have "it" - that unmistakable scream from clean to mean gain settings that shine through in (name your favorite guitar player here)'s tone. Mesa Boogie had always been on my radar - but they were likewise products that I always deemed too expensive and loud/big. After months of research and looking at a lot of products (e.g. the PRS custom 50 head and Archon, Oranges, Randall, H&K) I started to question that notion of Mesa being "out of reach." In fact, this was a poor belief completely. Deciding on choosing a lunchbox amp, I couldn't help but pursue the Mini Rec even despite never even playing on one (I had tried the Transatlantic and thought that was killer though). I was indeed very afraid the amp wouldn't be loud enough and trust me - this fear couldn't have been more incorrect; THIS THING IS LOUD. With wattage, "loudness" increases at a decreasing rate (e.g. the 100W head is not 4X louder than the 25W). I can't emphasize enough how loud this thing is. The cleans on this thing are astounding and really bring out your guitar's sound (for instance, when I plugged in my strat, I thought that it was the first time in my 10+ years of owning it that I had "heard it"). The cleans accompanied with some reverb and delay pedals really seal in the flavor (I use TC T2 reverb and TC Flashback Triple Delay). After a month of owning it I think I can dial in anything I want - from ambient drones and SRV/Hendrix tone and feedback, to Mark Tremonti/LOG/Meshuggah rip your face off tone (a tube screamer like the Maxon OD808 is a great addition). I couldn't be more pleased and am proud to be a member of the Mesa cult. Its an expensive lunchbox amp with the matching mesa cab - but its 100% worth it. Thanks to Nick Mock at sweetwater for such a friendly conversation and great alternative recommendations and things to take into consideration; he is a great guy. Long story short: pay the cost, be the boss with the Mini Rectifier. Cheers to all reading this in 2016.
Everything I've Ever Dreamed Of
When I started playing guitar at 18 years old (late bloomer I know) it was Metallica who influenced me to start playing. There tone was just incredible. I looked up what amps they used and I saw MESA/BOOGIE. Right then and there it was my dream to one day own a Mesa amp.
When I saw that this smaller (not as expensive) head was coming out, I researched it, watched every single video on YouTube about it, and I was hooked. In this day and age you don't really need massive 100+ watt tube heads and big cabinets. I've got this head paired with the slanted 1x12 rectifier and it is just magical. I eventually want to get the straight 1x12 to have the mini stack, and raise the speakers up a little as my deaf ears need that extra volume, haha. Plus it'll look sweet on stage.
I started off playing bass at 16 years old, then switched to guitar. Then bass again in a few bands. Now I'm playing guitar in a band again. Being 30 I was like, I'm done settling for the best and cheapest amp I can get. No more selling and trading to get what I want.
It's so worth the money I've spent. If you had any small desire to get this head, just do it. You will not be disappointed. It's all the amp you'll ever need. The amount of head room even on a 25 watt head is unreal. This amp is so versatile. Just shut up and buy it now !! It took me roughly 1 month to get my amp after I placed my order. I questioned if it'd be worth the wait, getting antsier and antsier as the days went by. So glad I waited !!!!
This amp is no joke! Truth be told, I owned a full size dual rectifier and ended up selling it off and getting this amp. IMO I prefer the sounds of this little guy over the larger amp due to volume capacity. I really love the simple controls and tonal capabilities this little guy is capable of. Gig wise....plenty of power, very easy to carry around, and true Mesa reliability. Effects loop works great! Don't think about buying this amp, just buy it!
Great sound out of a small package
I've always wanted a Mesa/Boogie, but at the time all they had were 100 watt combos and stacks. I was skeptical about getting one for fear that it wouldn't sound as good. I was VERY wrong. This little thing packs a punch. I have always loved tweakability in amps, effects. etc. The Mini rec doesn't disappoint. 2 channels each with 2 modes, and the option to choose between 10 or 25 watts what more could you ask for? The multi watt selection was another big factor in deciding to get this amp due to my current living situation with two roommates who work graves.
Channel 1 (Green) has amazing clean tones with every variation between clean/pushed and 10/25 watts. Lots of headroom in both modes. Turn up the gain in the pushed mode you can get a nice Vox-esque tone.
Channel 2 (Red) is Mesa all the way. That nice thick wall of distortion that they're known for. However, I did notice a volume drop when switching from modern to vintage at least in the 25 watt mode. I don't remember if there was one in the 10 watt. Just a small thing I noticed.
Mine didn't come with the hard bypass for the FX loop. Not a big deal since I have pedals in the loop anyway. It does take pedals very well both in the front and loop. I have a Mooer Green Mile for a little breakup if I need it or for a boost. It sounds great for either use. And don't let it's size fool you. I have the volume on both channels set between 9 and 11 O'clock and you can hear this throughout the whole house.
And only weighing 12 lbs is great. I think my Krank rev Jr Pro head is about 20 or so, that's really nice.
So, if you want that classic Mesa rectifier tone at reasonable volumes This will fit the bill just fine.
My friend also recommended me to sweetwater, he said they're better than some of those other sites. He wasn't kidding. That same day I got a call to confirm my order. I have never had that happen before. I will totally recommend Sweetwater to all my friends, and they will continue to get my business from now on.
Perfect little tube head
I have had this amplifier few weeks and find myself impressed with the construction, ease of use and tone. Be forewarned that even on the 10 watt setting, it's hard to push this amp to get great tube tone and keep the volume at bedroom levels. I suspected this going in and have no regrets.
Tired of lugging around a 60 pound head buy this now
Playing this thru a marshall 1960 b !!! Blown away sounds like the big ones ! Next on the list a mini mark 5 . The clean is amazing not chimey like some hi gain amps we know ! Hi gain side amazing lots of low end
Hot Power in Little Package
This amp is incredible. No more lugging around a huge head now that today's PA's are so much better than 30 years ago. Mesa Boogie's reputation is well deserved. I want to thank my rep Mark Magdich ext 1265 for all of his knowledge and guidance.
BEST AMP EVER
This amp gets pretty much any sound you could want in a super small package. The cleans are clean enough for acoustic guitar at reasonable
volume and the overdrive sounds are limitless.....I have used a Klon
Centaur overdrive since the 90s but no overdrive pedal is needed with
this amp ! Awesome tone from quiet to ear spliiting levels !!!
Wow! Sounds like his big bros!
I didn't think this little guy would sound so close to his big bros but I was wrong. If a triple rec is 100% this is 98%.
Perfect for anyone who doesn't want to break the bank or someone who lives in an apartment!
great big little amp
Loved my duel rec but got a little heavy for me so I bought this with the 112 slant cab. Gave up 1 channel and a solo boost,but kept all the tone and tube sweetness. Versatile,reliable. There's nothing this amp can't cover. Had it set on 10 watts with volume at 11 o'clock and got told to turn down at the first gig. Channel 1 clean or pushed is just beautiful. Channel 2,well if you know Mesa's you know how sweet the overdrive is. This is my main amp for a long,long time!
Mesa Boogie is the king
I have been a Mesa fanatic for a long long time. This amp is no different than any previous Mesa amp I have owned. Beautiful tones. Amazing heavy crunch, sustain, power and sound. Expensive, yes. But please. You get what you pay for.
What a GREAT addition to my amp collection!
This is my favorite amp out of my amp collection. It is simple, durable, reliable, LOUD and looks soooo adorable. It takes pedals well and the effect loop is a great option to have as well. It just has the sweetest clean channel and the distortion channel will give you more distortion than you will probably ever use. I could go on all day but I probably haven't said anything that hasn't already been said by the other reviewers. Give it a listen. You owe it to yourself!
Mini Mesa: the sound your looking for!
Let me start by saying I own all kinds of amps (Marshall, Mesa, Fender, etc) But this amp is my favorite! A lot of amps do the whole Distorted Growl thing in this day an age but none like the Mini Rec. Its punchy and sensitive to picking without being brittle sounding. The tone of the distorted channel is an immediate selling point and I encourage anyone to try out this amp whatever style of music you play.
The other reason to pick up this amp is the Clean channel. It goes from pure sweet sounding chords to a crunchy full tone just by flicking a switch! Definitely don't overlook the capabilities of the clean channel.
Note: On the modern setting after about 1 o'clock the tone does get a little "Buzzsaw-ish" and Fuzzy sounding. But I doubt most people will even need that thick of distortion from this amp.
A fantastic amp
I am blown away with the sound and quality build of this amp. I was looking for a lightweight amp head that would sound great and allow me to scale down my rig. I was also looking for an amp that had a decent drive channel so I wouldn't always need my pedalboard. I used it this weekend with no pedalboard and only a tuner between my guitar and the amp. The sound was incredible. I would recommend this amp to anyone who is looking to lighten up the load, and don't be fooled by the killer looks. It's not just a metal amp, and is capable of great cleans.
What an amazing piece of Boogie. I'm so happy with this amp. Having played a Dual Recto, a Triple Recto, and a Roadstar for the sake of comparison, I can tell you that this amp isn't the same as its bigger brothers, you can tell they're related. This guy serves a bit of a different function that the rest of the Mesa family, and he serves it up hot. I could list everything this amp is lacking, and it would still earn a 5 star rating. Like, not having reverb, only being able to switch between 2 channels, when the amp really has 4, no footswitchable effect loop (it does however have a switch on the back of the amp for loop on/off), and that doesn't matter one bit. This little hulk will still blow you away with tone for days and a size that is super easy to take anywhere, with enough volume to handle anything a guitarist on the go can throw at it. Get one before theyre gone forever. That new rectoverb 1x12 might just be the replacement to the mini rectifier.
I bought this amp because I'm a fan of Petrucci's tone and wanted something that could at least get close (he used to use roadkings) and I couldn't afford a Mark series Mesa/Boogie. I have been absolutely amazed at the tonal quality and expressiveness of this amp. I don't even consider it a compromise anymore as I probably wouldn't trade it in for a Mark V even if I could. This amp sounds even better in my opinion than a larger dual rectifier and produces great creamy leads in 10 watt triode mode and a bitier, sometimes snappier sound in 25 watt pentode mode. Each of the four preamp modes (clean, pushed, vintage, modern) sound and respond in remarkably different ways, which make this an incredibly versatile amp. It's also a lot louder than you would expect even from a 25 watt tube amp. It's about as loud as my 1984 Carvin x100b in 50 watt mode. On top of all of this it's built very well and is signed with a birth date on it, which gives it some very special character right out of the box IMO. Definitely an amp to hold on to for life and I can see myself using this as my main amp for years to come.
The best all around amp I've owned !!!
I needed a lower wattage amp, but I did not wan't to sacifice quality so I was willing to pay more. Well, what can I say this Mini Rectifier just BLEW MW AWAY!! Good God, the tonal qualities,versatiy and punch that this thing has is beyond words, you just have to try it for yourself. You can go from sparkling cleans to AC/DC to all out metal depending on how you settings (BTW, it is so simple to tweak). Also, it is really, and I mean REALLY LOUD on 25w. Drop it to 10W and you still have an awesome sound at bedroom leves. And, then there is Sweetwater's Nate Edwards, the consumate professional that made this all happen. Thanks Nate and Sweetwater, I could not ask for better service and advice.
Stop Looking- This is it!
I've owned a Mesa Dual Rec for close to 10 years and never had a problem. I love the tone That I gett, but the 100 watt head is just too much amp for the majority of my gigs. I have been looking for something smaller that sounded like my Recto for years and bought and sold many combos. Well I finally made the right move and bought this amp. All I can say is that I absolutely love this mini-rec! My band plays everything from country to Metallica and this amp does 'em all with ease. It's perfect. I used it for my worship band at church and again, awesome. I usually pair it with a vertical 2x12, but it sounds great with my open back 1x12 too. I can finally relax and stop messing around with all those other amps...what a relief.
What an amp!
I have owned over 50 high end tube amps (and played many more) including models from Vox, Fender, Marshall, Orange, Peavey, Mesa, Fryette, and more. These range from vintage amps from the 50s on up to the modern high gain monsters made today. I purchased my Mini in October 2012 and this has been my go to amp since. It can do it all. Obviously, it's got the high gain sounds (and the modern mode sounds just like my Dual Recto). But the clean/pushed channel is actually one of my favorite circuits. It gets a HUGE range of tones. I would seriously buy this amp just for that channel and I would be totally satisfied. And everything sounds good through it too. Humbuckers, Fender single coils, P90s, etc. Channel 2 vintage on 10w with the master cranked up gets some GREAT lead tones. And, of course, the Modern mode on 25w sounds killer (but we already expected that). Through a 1x12 cab, this amp works very well at home and in the studio (but it won't quite cut it for playing live with a drummer). However, plug it into a 4x12 and it'll keep up with a drummer just fine (clean as well). This is an amazingly versatile amp and is worth every penny (and more). I'd love to criticize it, but I have nothing bad to say about it. It's awesome!
Mesa/Boogie has produced another excellent amplifier. If you want the Rectifier tone in a small, easily portable size, this is the only choice. This amp produces great tones at low volumes and is loud enough to play at small venues. The EQ is very responsive and the amp is as solid as any Mesa/Boogie product.
Thanks to Sweetwater for excellent service and quick shipping.
This amp is the real deal! Well worth the money!
I was a bit skeptical at first on this amp and was wondering if I had made a good investment or not. I play in a worship band at my church and I was scared this amp would be too loud to use on stage. But that is not the case...I was so impressed with just one performance with this amp. It is just perfect! This amp sounds good at all levels. You don't have to crank this thing loud to get good tones out of it. I have been playing for several years in this band and I received numerous comments on how good my guitar sounded last sunday. Our bass player was blown away as well and he is a sound tech nerd! He said "I've never heard an amp with so much warmth coming from it as this one does". Needless to say I am glad that I decided to purchase this amp. It was well worth the money. I went back and forth between this amp, Orange tiny terror, Vox AC30 and some others. But for my use I thought this was the best for the amount of features and versatility. And the gig bags look awesome and make it easy to carry on and off stage. Mesa has done a super job on this amp.
Best in class, plays way over its weight
This is just an amazing little amp. Can't say enough about it, the clean tones are excellent and the overdrive tones are scary good too. Can hang in many different contexts too, its awesome clean tones make it incredibly versatile. I just gigged it for the first time with my R&B group and it kicked butt. Can't wait to fire it up in my TX blues outfit. Handles different OD pedals in front very well. Effects loop works great too. I don't think I'll be hauling my heavier amps to rehearsal ever again, nor will they be seeing nearly as much gig time as they used to, it's just too easy to travel with this little guy... easy to carry, but NO compromise on the tone. FUN AMP.
Yes. It's really THAT good.
It's hard not to fall in love with Mesa products. It's even harder not to accept something just because it has the Mesa name on it. But I almost walked away from this one when I saw it the first time. Like many others I thought I had been shipped a Happy Meal toy by mistake. Its small size was drawn more sharply into focus as it sits beside my Roadster head with 4x12 Recto cab. But dang... it sounds wonderful. And the volume is abundant. Bear in mind that it has no on-board reverb. But I use an Electro-Harmonix Holy Grail in the effects loop and it sounds terrific. The EL-84s give you less bottom than the 6L6's in my Roadster. But high-gain sounds are still VERY good. And the clean sound is superior to those that my Roadster provides. My previous smallish amp was a 4x10 combo made by a great company whose name rhymes with "Bender". That product was inferior to this one in every way, even after compensating for expense. If you have the jack to spend on an amp of this price level, you won't be disappointed.
I read lots of reviews for this amp before I finally decided to pull the trigger and buy it... I had bought a solo 50 rectifier from ebay, but had problems with it so I sent it back... SO GLAD I DID... when I first took this amp out of the box, I literally thought "no way is this toy looking thing going to be able to play large venues"... boy was I WRONG... this amp has some of the best tones I've ever heard, and LOUD! I turned the master up to 3 on the dirty channel and was literally almost blown out of my bar stool... the construction is top notch, very solid.. you can tell this amp is hand built.. the tubes are easy to access... I cant wait to play my first gig with it this weekend, in a LARGE venue no less... you wont believe your ears..
25 Watts is PLENTY!
Going in I knew I wanted the range of Mesa Rectifier tones (I play in both a Fleetwood Mac/Stevie Nicks tribute band as well as a hard-edged blues/rock band); my concern focused on this: Would 25 watts be enough to gig with?
So, I waited to post my review on the Mini Rectifier until I had completed 3 gigs with it. The 3 gigs were: an outdoor festival, a mid-sized venue (the main room at Smith's Olde Bar in Atlanta) and a small club. At each venue during sound check, I had to turn down from the levels I thought I would need. Basically for each of these gigs I wound up with the Channel 1 master set at about 1 o'clock (gain between 12 and 1 o'clock) and the Channel 2 master set at about 10 o'clock (gain between 2 and 3 o'clock). At the mid-sized venue and outdoor festival the cabinet was mic'ed, but at the small club the cabinet was not mic'ed. I still had plenty of volume -- and the band I played with at the small club is a loud, hard-edge blues and rock band that covers tunes by Bad Company, Joe Bonamassa, Hendrix, etc. Still ... plenty of volume!
Disclaimer: I do use a pedal board with a Tube Screamer and compressor (as well as a wah, delay and chorus), and the compressor and Tube Screamer do boost the volume from what the amp puts out at the levels described above on its own (Note: At the max I set the gain on the Tube Screamer at the 9 o'clock and the level, at max, at about 2 o'clock, so I'm not jacking the amp with tons of extra boost). You can definitely ditch your distortion pedal with this amp! The Vintage and Modern settings on Channel 2 will have you covered.
I also got both the slant and straight Mini Rectifier cabs to create a "Mini stack". Technically, this does not significantly increase the volume (due to going from 8 ohms to 4 ohms when you add the extra cab), but the two together push a ton of air and the effect is definitely that of noticeably increased volume.
Finally -- you just can't beat the weight and size of this amp. Load in and load out are so much easier.
Bottom line: Very pleased with this product and, as usual, the service at Sweetwater remains top notch! Kudos to Ryan Holquist.
Good things in small packages?
I must admit that when I pulled this little guy out of the box I had to wonder if I could really take it seriously. Don't get me wrong, it's a thing of beauty, but man, is it tiny. From an engineering standpoint, this head is like the mating of a swiss watch and a custom motorcycle: absolute precision meets badass design. Its looks are impressive but the variety tones and pristine headroom under the hood are more impressive still. Every channel has something good to offer and the responsiveness of the controls gets you to the sweet spot with minimal tweeking (but do youself a favor and read the manual). The amp sound good by itself, but if you're picky and want it all, you'll still find yourself using a few choice pedals; fortunately there's no need for endless stacking and tweeking: a little bump is all you need. When you get right down to it, there's absolutely nothing wrong with this amp (although the bag and footswitch are a bit of a joke). You can play just about any style of music through this thing and sound pretty good doing it. It's tight, articulate, and fun as hell to play. Buy one immediately.
Fueled by the Fires of Hell!
After playing live with this head the first time, I had two friends that know the difference compliment me on it's tone. Previously had a Night Train 15 which has now become my backup.
It's expensive, but "hand-made in the USA" goes a long way with me these days...
Fantastic low wattage amp with enough juice for a gig
The mini rectifier is a great low wattage amp that lets you 'play the amp'. It has enough juice to jam with a loud drummer as well. Pure and sweet tube tones. This amp is well built and sounds amazing. I have owned many Mesa amps (mark iv, Rec 50 and 100, lonestar) and this amp keeps up with the tones but now I can actually turn the volume knob past 3 and not have hearing loss. You still get the great Mesa tones from clean to gritty to a fluid heavy tone that will clean up with your guitar's volume knob. Plus you can not beat the service at sweet water. Great and knowledgable staff.
Truly the drummer's best friend...
I bought a TA-15 that was great, but my guitar player was not completely satisfied with the amount of "crunch" from the amp. I returned it for a mini 25. He is thrilled with this amp and it definitely
is more of a crunch machine than the TA 15...oh well, what can I say,
I am a drummer. Anyway, I advise to demo both of the amps and pick
the one that most satisfies your ears. Mesa Boogie rules...it is all a matter of personal taste at this level of quality and performance.
The people at Mesa Boogie are the best and were very helpful in guiding me to make the right choice this time. Made in America.
Mesa Boogie Mini RECTO
I own a lot of amps, I bought this amp for my practice room and not to gig with, and I must say the Mini Recto suprised me, not for the Recto sound, I expected that, but the crystal clean tight clean sound! This amp is a winner, I don't know how anyone could be disappointed. Of special note, I was set on buying the Britain Made (not CHINA!) Orange Tiny Terror, but the dirty channel was so noisy, the Mini Recto is quiet. Plus the size is great and I don't have to re-bias the amp when I change tubes! It looks tough and when I crank it up it screams! SWEETWATER is the best!
this amp is the cats ***!!!
Bought this amp a couple of weeks ago and its absolutely worth every penny. You want sparkling cleans? U got it. U want a multitude of gain options, from warm bluesy OD to ball blistering distortion? You got that too. This ***** is plenty loud for gigging, and great at producing widespread eargasms for your unsuspecting listeners. When you want great tone you definitely have to open up your wallet. Don't be seduced by the lure of more affordable, foreign made, low watt tube amp imposters (marshall,orange,vox) You get what you pay for. If you wanna sound like a rockstar, buy a Mesa. You won't be disappointed.
If you are thinking of buying a very powerful amp and only do small gigs, think again. I just love my Mesa Mini Rectifier and matching cab. This setup will BLOW YOU AWAY. My 100 watt Marshall was not used to it's full potential. You will not be disappointed with the Mini.
Don't let it's size fool you, it breathes fire!!
Well, I received this amp today and I have to say I'm just amazed by the tone coming out of this little box! I've tried a lot of other lower wattage tube heads, but have never been able to find the right one for me....until now. Firstly, unlike Rectos of the past, the clean channel is simply amazing on this amp. Tons of clarity and headroom. The bottom end is very fat if you want it that way, but does not get all flubby. Plenty of shimmering highs, my Strat just sounds beautiful through it. Channel 2 has everything you would expect from the boys and girls in Petaluma, CA! The vintage mode slays, the tone just oozes out of my speakers. In modern, hold on to your shorts because this bad boy just rips! Everything you would expect from it's big brother, only FAR more manageable for home use. Don't misunderstand by point, this amp has MORE than enough volume and headroom to play out with. I'm just thrilled to death with this little amp, it truly is worth the money and sounds totally amazing! You NEED to get one now! A final point...as a long time user of Mesa Boogie amps I can say with the highest confidence that no other company stands behind their gear and takes care of the customer like they do. NOBODY!!
The perfect solution
Like many guitarists, I got caught up in getting bigger and badder amps...but I could never get them to the sweet spot because I could never turn up the volume without blowing the windows out of the room. This amp is the answer. First of all, it's loud...25 watts is more than enough in most live situations. But the versatility is what really blew my mind - you can get so many sounds out of this amp. While I love the modern, high-gain sound, I was really surprised at the Channel 1 pushed. You can literally play any kind of music with this amp. I've never used an amp that responds like this one does to the smallest, most subtle changes in volume, gain, and eq. It's great!
The Real Deal
I've owned 2 dual recto's at different points in the past, always loved the tone but due to volume constraints could never turn them up to the proper sweetspot.. This version is the perfect solution to that dilemma. And believe me it's PLENTY LOUD for any practice, club, or hall type of gig.
While the overall tone of the amp is familiar and what you'd expect, the EL 84 power section imparts a new character....it sounds a little more British to me which is very cool. Plus it has some cool nuances in the triode 10watt mode on both channels.
An added bonus is the Pushed mode on channel one....really wide gain structure that goes from chimey, almost Vox-ish clean to power overdrive. It is even a more versatile mode in my opinion than on the 100 watt dual rec.
I originally bought this to have an easy to carry, high quality backup amp but have found myself using it all the time. It's great to get that recto tone of the 90's again but at usable volume levels. Awesome amp!!!!
Mini in size maxi in sound!!! Sounds fantastic, easily loud enough to handle medium to large club's, easy on the back.
Have had this since day one when it launched at Sweetwater. (Thanks Robby Resnick @X1368). The Mini Recto has a plethora of tones, good features in a righteous sized chassis that is truly a serious player. Cleans, to grit, to full-on gainiac mayhem we all love from the REC big brother. The amp is quiet, the EFX loop works well, no additional noise, pedals are a breeze in front of and through the loop. The mini magma machine sounds killer through my 212 Recto cabby with V30's or my Marshall 412 with GT75's. It's easy to fall prey to the wattage game, 25/10 watts from a tube amp is rock solid loud. Well worth the investment in your tone.
i have owned :
mk1,2c,3, nomad, studio 22, triaxis, and now my mini recto. to me this is very reminiscent of cranking a mk series amp to the brink. i have done that many times. i have this hooked up to a 2x12 soldano with v30's . holy cow ! first off, this ain't no toy. it is built like a mini tank. the head and the 2x12 cabinet is much lighter to lug around that a mk series combo. YEAH!!!!!!!! I LOVE THIS AMP ! get awesome boogie cranked tone at reasonable volume, clean/headroom is cool, and you don't break your back. with a tele it is spectacular, and with a les paul it is heavenly. takes all my pedal like a champ. get it !
Same Recto at ear friendly volume
Got it last night. It really does sound like it's big brothers only without ear bleeding volume. I've only tried out the 10W setting so far but I can't complain. It's also super quiet and doesn't hum or buzz like some other high gain amps do.
Great amp, -1/2 star for picky stuff
This is a great all tube amp, that can cover a lot of genres. I'm playing at home, at volume levels of conversation to movie theater, and some gigging volumes (with earplugs) just to experience all the amp has to offer. I'm using a 2x10 open back cab with Celestion Silver Series (part of a Crate GXT210 combo amp, which I modified to make the speakers useable as a cab).
I'm taking a 1/2 star off for these two items which keep it from being perfect:
1.) The "Modern" voicing on channel 2 is much louder than "Vintage" and channel 1. You can mostly adjust for this by cranking the master on channel 1 in order to get a good balance between clean and distortion, etc. Switching between Vintage to Modern always requires fiddling with the Gain and Volume knobs though if you want to keep the same volume level.
2.) It would be nice if the footswitch did more than just change between channels. Changing between voicings would be great (clean to pushed on channel 1 for example would be very useable). Also switching between 10/25 W modes would be useful. I understand the bigger Rec's, Marks, etc. don't have this functionality either, so you're not missing that feature with the Mini. Just a wish!
A couple points I'll make, because these are the questions I had when researching this amp:
1.) The amp takes pedals well! On channel 1, clean or pushed, I have used an Xotic EP booster & compressor, JHS Muffuletta, JHS Andy Timmons, and an Amptweaker Tight Metal Jr. and gotten great sounds from the amp. I've also used delay and reverb in the front and loop of the amp. I've you're using the Mini's preamp distortion, then effects like delay and reverb sound much better in the loop.
2.) Bedroom volume is possible, and sounds good! What I do, to give myself an overall Master Volume control, is to place a master volume pedal in the effects loop (like EHX Signal Pad, EWS Subtle Volume Contro, etc.). This type of pedal is just an input & output jack, switch (if you want), and a volume pot. It doesn't increase the amp's volume, so at max. pedal volume you're getting the bypassed volume level.
But, backing the volume on the master pedal down to 2-5 (out of 10) lets me turn the preamp volume down on the amp, prior to hitting the power tubes. This means I can hit the preamp hard with full guitar volume, get great sounding preamp tube distortion (with higher gain settings on the front of the amp), then lower the whole volume level to a quiter level.
This works on this amp because it has a serial effects loop. On amps with a parallel effects loop, this "trick" won't work. The only thing I'm missing out at the quieter volumes is the power tube distortion, which while great, the preamp tube distortion on this amp is pretty great too.
Clean Channel Suprisingly Good Compared to Mark V
I would give this a 5 star rating based on what Mesa was able to give us in a 12 Lb package. With this size compromise, I wasn't expecting it to be they only amp I'd ever own - it was going to be a portable practice amp in my mind. But with those compromises, this amp gets as close to a big boy amp as you can probably get without having 100W 50 Lb head. I only give it 4.5 because the tone is slightly compromised naturally because of the size/wattage limits, but overall, this amp actually nails a fantastic tone and after trying a few other low wattage amps, this is the best I have tried and there is nothing about it that is displeasing.
I owned a Mesa Tremo-Verb Head and Mesa 4x12 Recto cabinet back in 2004 so it's been a while since I had played with a rectifier. I was drawn to this amp because of the size/weight for portability and the known factor of Mesa quality. I currently own a Mesa Mark V and was able to directly compare the two amps on the same Avatar 2x12 open back cabinet loaded with an Eminence Governor and an Eminence ManOWar speaker.
Out of the box, all controls on the green (clean) channel of the mini-rectifier at noon, I was instantly getting clean fat tones that put a smile on my face. Switching back to the Mark V clean channel, the Mark V only beat the mini-rec because it has more "thud" in the bass due to the 90W 6L6 power amp and EQ, and it was able to maybe get a little cleaner. But for all intents and purposes, I was able to get very nice fat, clear, clean tones out of the Mini Rec. Headroom to me was very good, not pristine as the Mark V, but didn't expect it to be. Seems plenty loud too - with gain at around noon I couldn't turn the master volume up too much without blowing myself out of the room. Seems like this would be a good pedal platform channel to me for a reasonably loud band (which is why I bought this amp). I liked this clean channel better than the Egnater Tweaker 40 which is reportedly very good for clean tones.
Red Channel - Also good, a touch fizzy on the top (which is the recto sound partly, but this is little more fizzly to my ear). It is missing that deep thud of a full 100W recto for sure, but still, for a EL84 amp (which I normally do not like), this has good amount of tight bass. Overall tone is good and very usable and loud enough for most bands I think. Compared to the Mark V crunch and lead channels, this mini-recto sounded very good (just a touch lacking on the bass compared to a 90W Mark V, but not surprising). The distortion tones a quite different of course between a Mark V and recto, but I guess what I am saying is that the Mini sounds like a real amp, not a toy lunchbox amp.
The Avatar cab I have been using has never really put out a lot of bass (I need to experiment with closing up the open back), so a good cabinet will do major miracles for tone as well I am sure. So this review is based on a so/so cabinet. I am likely going to upgrade soon to a mesa cabinet, it really is worth it, don't underestimate the value of good cabinet!
Overall, for a 12 Lb lunch box amp, this thing sounds almost as good as the Mark V (of course the dirt channels are very different, so that is taste as well). I almost found myself liking the clean sounds BETTER than my Mark V in some ways, believe it or not. The mini has some mojo in that clean channel that I am very pleasantly surprised by.
Joe Schafer has been awesome and Sweetwater service is in another category. I got lured away to discount places but I came back to Sweetwater because they make things right no matter what and when you need that kind or service you'll be glad you went with Sweetwater.
Mesa Mini Rectifier 25
This amp is extremely versatile. I do most of my playing in a back room so it doesn't much to blow your ears out. The problem with my other amps is you need to get them cranked up to "work" the tubes. This switchable 10W/25W amp gets me the tones I'm after and actually performs much better than I expected. I did use at an outdoor party and it had plenty of headroom to get the sound out there. It comes with the slanted cabinet, but after playing it out I decided to add on the straight extension cabinet as well. It should come with reverb, which it doesn't, that would be my only negative input on this equipment. It cranks, sounds awesome, Great purchase.....
Little brother size but not little brother tone - it screams
I'll add to the positive reviews here and my 4.5 is very realistic. I don't even think my Dual Rec is a 5.0 and I love that amp. Yes, this seems to be the most expensive lunchbox amp out there but I've tried nearly all of them and none have the tone or features of this amp. Most venues we play have a capacity of 250 people or less and unless we have a big stage, my Dual Recifier + 4x12 cabinet is really too powerful to get loud enough on stage to get the right tone without blowing everyone else in the band away. I wanted something more portable and compact but I ended up unknowingly changing my main rig! I pair this with the Mesa 2x12 vertical rectifier cabinet and these are voiced perfectly for each other. FYI, I'm not crazy about the mini-rec 1x12 cabinet that are supposed to go with this amp. Sounded boxy and small to me.
The thing I like better about this mini compared to my Dual, is that I can run it hotter, getting better power amp saturation/tone and musical feedback. You have to dial the controls slightly different than a dual but you can get nearly identical sounds (I have an A/B box and did thorough tests). Because the gigs I do are smaller, I actually prefer the sound of this to my Dual for the reason listed above. What surprised me was the clean channel and it's ability to get dirty too. At the 25 watt setting and the gain dimed, the clean channel produces an excellent recfifier tone, very similar to the hot channel, but with less gain, making it a great choice for classic rock or a tight AC/DC type rhythm tone. Switch to lead channel with higher gain for solos and it soars! There is no channel popping like others have mentioned if you keep both channels at the same wattage. There will be a pop if one is at 25 and the other at 10.
On both channels, the 10 watt setting is certainly useable and nice, but no where near as good as the 25 watt setting. The clean channel is quite good when gain is low and you are truly looking for a clean sound, but it is true that it isn't super loud this way. Most people buy a rectifier for the distorted sounds and this amp has about as much gain as you could ever want. Do NOT be concerned this amp isn't loud enough for a full band. This amp is ridiculously loud and with my 2x12, I can easily keep up with my bandmates (we play hard rock) and then some. This is a fantastic amp with tons of tone and power, regardless of it's "lunchbox" size.
This is a killer amp head. It packs so much tone into such a small package it's almost impossible to believe. Mesa rectifiers are often associated with heavy bands and for good reason, this thing knocks heavy tones outta the park. But underneath all the gain lies an immaculate tonal canvas. From cleans to high gain there is not a single tone this amp doesn't crush. I play mostly clean to some moderately heavy rock crunch and I could not be happier with the tone.
There are a ton of features jammed in there as well. 2 footswitchable channels that can be set to 25 or 10 watts independently? You bet! An fx loop that can be hardwired out of the loop? Nailed it. Separate EQs and master volume for both channels? No doubt. The only thing I can really fault it for is no reverb, which with this amp's size is a logistical impossibility, however the fx loop handles a reverb pedal so nice it doesn't really matter.
I once thought mesa rectifiers were for metal only and I was wrong. VERY wrong. I almost never touch the high gain modern setting (though it is a great setting) and I couldn't be happier with the sound. Great for live use and for recording. Sick of sound guys at the club or church telling you to turn down your 50 or 100 watt head? I was too, this is the answer.
Killer Amp for clean and heavy Distortion
I am proud to say that this is a bad *** little amp that I now own! It does clean very well and the dirty channel drives some heavy yet articulate and warm gain tones! I am running it through a 1x12 Trans 19 open back cab and it is super punchy. I may get a 1x12 reto cab to use in tandem with the TA-19 cab. I am also running a TC. Electronics Hall Of Fame Reverb through the fx loop and it is the perfect setup. Overall this is my fave amp to date and I have played many from cheap to expensive.
I had the TA-15 for a while and it was awesome too but did not have the warm bite with overdrive and pure harmonic punch that this amp has.
The best lunchbox, bar none
This is my first experience with Mesa/Boogie products and I have to say they have completely won me over. Everything right down to the packaging is great. You really feel like you are getting quality for your hard earned money right out of the box.
The only things I don't like about this amp are the look (a little too metal), and the carrying case (a little too small). Everything else is phenomenal. You can get any sound you want out of this thing, and it has more gain on tap than any other amp I've played. I run the gain at about noon-1 o clock and get some pretty gnarly hard rock distortion from single coils.
Some say Mesas can be tough to dial in, I did not find that to be the case with the mini recto. Out of the box I set all the controls to noon and it sounded great right there. A little tweaking and I've found my perfect sound. The eq is extremely responsive, and the presence control is outstanding when you want to fatten up your tone a bit or add a bit of twang.
I don't see myself ever parting with this amp. You can get great tube tone at acceptable home volume levels, but make no mistake - this thing has more than enough volume to gig. I am playing it through a single 112 with Celestion Vintage 30 and I have no trouble being heard at band practice (and that's without even pushing the limits on this little beast).
If you're in the lunchbox market and are considering this amp, just buy it. I highly doubt you'll be disappointed.
Little amp - Huge sound!
This amp totally rocks! It's my 2nd Mesa Boogie amp and I'm even more impressed with this little jewel than I am with my Express 5/50. They both get great clean, over-drive and distorted tones, but the Mini-Rectifier goes one step further with the ability to get feedback (aka Santana/Al DiMeola) at amazingly low volume levels with ease. I think I'm starting to understand all the buzz surrounding amps based on EL84s because this is borderline the best amp I've ever played. The only reason I don't give it 5 stars is because of the price.
Mesa Doesn't Disappoint
There are few moments in a guitarist's life when he/she can look back and say, that piece of equipment made me a better player. Plugging into the mini-rec for me was one such moment. The diversity of sounds, the control and the power are just staggering (at even low volumes). This was an upgrade from my Bogner Alchemist (with which I was perfectly happy other than the weight). Unlike other amps that have wattage switches that basically do nothing, each setting and switch on this amp is a different persona. I was worried about the clean channel but it was perfectly clear and warm. I knew I could rely on the distortion of the red channel, but what I didn't know was how diverse and musical each setting was. Despite the fact that I play very heavy at times, the vintage channel is perfect. Singing leads and low growl with no muddiness. Each and every note is well defined. This amp isn't for everybody. If you're looking for a Vox-type sound, buy a Vox (or the Transatlantic). For those of you more into Santana or SRV or like your rock hard, look no further. There are a few things that could be improved: foot switch seems a bit flimsy, but has held up, the knob positions are very hard to see in dark or light (even with the red glow), the cable that comes with it is total crap and the bag for the head is too tight a fit. It's a pain to cram it in after a gig. I know, pretty small stuff. I would also flip the on/off standby switches so that they're up and down. It would make them more intuitive.
Loving this amp
Got this amp about a month ago, and I can honestly say that this amp has exceeded my expectations and the some, Mesa makes quality gear folks hence the higher price tag (USA gear is top quality). Ok the sound, the cleans are great just takes some time dialing in, now this is where Mesa has everyone beat, the dirty channels folks this amps is 25 watts but it sounds like a 100 watts, the distortion is djent, and everything between. Buy this amp, and more importantly buy it from sweetwater the best sales team I've dealt with, no joke
I really like the responsiveness of the amp and the power. It is loud enough to work with a drummer. I think you have to take some time with it and get your tone. It makes you play more intentionally. I have found that it sounds best with a compression pedal and OD.
Nice little amp head
I have previously tried its big brothers (dual and triple rectifier heads) and did really like them both, specially the triple rectifier head. Unfortunately I was not able to afford either of them, reason why I decide it to pull the trigger and get the mini rectifier and man, I do not regret it.
Sound wise it’s just amazing; although I am a hi-gain amp guitarist, I am more pleased with the clean channel side of this little guy. Do not get me wrong, hi-gain channel side its good, but it just does not delivers enough gain, at least not for me, nothing than can´t be cured with an overdrive pedal.
Portability wise it’s just a five star amp, very light weight and easy to carry, do not forget it’s reliable and amazing clear sound that can be carry anywhere you need it, something particularly important for a tone chaser guitarist.
To be able to tell what this amp can possible deliver, I really recommend using at least a 2x12 cab with this amp to do justice, you won’t be disappointed.
The only reason I am giving this amp 4 starts, it’s because its high cost
Bottom line, I would definitely recommend it.
Sweet little amp head
This little head has seemingly endless potential for sculpting your tone. Some find the price excessive for a lunch box amp but this one sits head and shoulders above the rest. Plenty loud and doesn't require cranking to achieve any number of overdriven tones. Goodbye overdrive pedals, they aren't needed anymore. If there is one thing it's missing it's a little more volume when you are shooting for a completely clean sound. Then again, this isn't most folks' choice for a clean amp. I'm running it with the Mesa slant 1x12" cabinet and a second 1 x 12" cabinet with an Eminence Governor. I couldn't be happier with this purchase. Nothing really compares at this price point.
Great Value and Versatility with Great Sound!
The little engine that could!
Pretty much blew the paint off of the walls the first week with this thing. A blast to play, though I find myself keeping it in 10W mode for most things. The "Pushed" Ch.1 setting with the "Vintage" Ch.2 and a GT-OD. Booyah.
4Stars only because of the foot switch. Very basic, no option for controlling the separate sides of each channel, seemed cheap for a $1000 head. Read the manual as the tone/Eq circuits are laid out a little different than some amps.
Mini Rectifier has maxi output
Don't be let down by the four stars. I would only give five to a product that gave me features or performance that I did not even know I needed. The Mini Rectifier provides what you need to get your job done, whatever it is. Each of the two channels has a selectable input setting (sort of low gain and high gain) and a selectable output setting of 10 or 25 watts. 25 watts sounds a bit on the small side, but make no mistake, this head will produce some serious output. The knob controls are straight forward, three for EQ plus presence. You can actually hear some difference in the tone as you adjust the tone controls (something I have not always found on amps). This feels like a well built solid piece of gear and comes with a useful carry bag that I hang over my shoulder for easy toting. A foot switch provides channel selection, so I can have a pretty and an ugly channel setup and change on the fly. This is worth the bucks.
make sure you get a good cab
i do not own this amp. however i regularly jam with a friend who does. He plays lots of thrash in the vein of big 4 stuff and he pairs it up with a dv mark cab. When i first heard this head through that cab, it sounded horrendous in the treble frequences, like mini ice picks for your ears. moving the mid frequency up and down didn't do much either with that speaker. I decided to pair the amp up with my friend's 2 by 12 that has v30s. wow what a difference. the frequency response was much more even. I was able to get useful tones for jazz (cleans imo are better than full sized rec), blues, thrash metal, death metal, and other extreme forms of metal. If you're looking for a massive upper mid sound of 80s british metal, look into getting an orange terror or blackstar ht20. Moral of the story is make sure you get a good cab loaded with v30s and has decent amount of bass response. also with what you get i think it would be more appropriate to price this amp in the $600-$800 range, not 1000.
mesa mini rec
The cleans are great, but not loud, The lead channel is loud, but not great.. None of the 10 watt settings sound good compared to the 25 watt settings, and I'm on my second one, due to some problems with the original one I purchased. Oh yea,, then theres the price... On the positive side, This thing is capable of conjuring up a multitude of different tones. I was hoping to get an amp that I could run without pedals, but that didnt happen.. Unfortunitly, I did end up spending a few hundred more, to get exactly the tone I was looking for. Dispite my problems with this amp, I do think it is the best lunchbox amp on the market right now. It definitly offers more controle, and bigger sounds than its competition. And yes, Its loud enough to gig with... And for the people saying " You could get a used..... for that kind of money..." Lets remember why these amps exist in the first place: portablity, and the ability to sound good at lower a lower volume.