Welcome to our review of the Fender Frontman 10G!
If you are in the market looking for a budget guitar amplifier, chances are that you have heard the names such as Fender Frontman 10G, Marshall MG10 or Laney LX10.
These are some of the most popular budget electric guitar amplifiers available in India.
If you’ve been playing the guitar for sometime, then you should know that the sound of your Guitar is only as good as the amplifier it’s played through.
And if there’s one piece of gear that can make or break your tone, it’s the Amplifier.
So, let’s start with our review of the small but mighty Fender Frontman 10G Electric Guitar Amplifier.
I’m going to give you my honest and detailed review of the amplifier.
The Fender Frontman 10G is like a musical genie; with just a flick of its switches and knobs, it can turn even the most basic electric guitar into a rock ‘n’ roll machine.
Before we begin with the full review, let us understand what to look for in a Good Budget Guitar Amplifier.
BUDGET AMPLIFIER BUYING GUIDE
There are a few things that I recommend you should keep in mind when buying a guitar amplifier, especially a budget amplifier.
Number One thing. You want an amplifier that sounds good to your ears!
The tone is everything! So, when you’re trying out different amps, play around with the different knobs, settings and listen to how they affect the sound.
Look for an amplifier that can produce different tones, from clean and sparkly to overdriven and Distorted.
Another thing to consider is the wattage.
For home practice, a lower wattage amplifier can be a great option, as it allows you to obtain a good sound at lower volumes.
A 10-20 watt amplifier should be more than enough for most home practice situations.
If you plan on taking your amplifier to gigs, events or rehearsals, you’ll want something that’s easy to carry around.
A smaller, lighter amplifier may be a better option than a big, bulky one.
You’ll need to buy an amplifier that’s built to last.
I understand that you might have a tight budget, but don’t skimp on quality. Look for an amplifier that’s sturdy and well-built, with good reviews from other users.
Now, that we know the qualities of a Good Budget Guitar Amplifier, We can continue with our review.
FENDER FRONTMAN 10G REVIEW
Fender is considered to be one of the greatest Guitar Brands. It was founded by Leo Fender in 1946.
Fender’s amplifiers are known for their high-quality sound, reliability, and iconic designs.
The first Fender amplifier, the “Tweed Deluxe,” was introduced in 1948.
Ever since then, fender has launched many iconic Amplifier models such as the Bassman, Deluxe Reverb, Twin Reverb, Princeton Reverb and Blues Junior.
Frontman, Mustang and Champion series are some of the affordable Amplifier lineups of Fender.
These amplifiers are available in a price range of Rs. 6000 to Rs. 20,000 and are targeted at beginners and anyone who need a relatively small amplifier for practice.
Having said that, the Fender Frontman 10G is available in many Online and Offline Music Stores in India in under Rs. 7000.
We’ll take a deeper dive into the features and other aspects of the Frontman 10G.
Let’s Start with the features.
FEATURES & SPECIFICATIONS
Below are some of the Technical Specifications of the Fender Frontman 10G.
|Amplifier Type||Solid State|
|Power Output||10 W|
|Controls||Gain, Overdrive/Clean, |
Volume, Treble, Bass
|Inputs||1/4″ Input for Guitar,|
1/8″ Auxiliary Input
DESIGN AND BUILD QUALITY
Let’s talk about the features and the Build Quality of the Frontman 10G in detail.
The Fender Frontman 10G has “Vintage” written all over it.
The design, the logo, the knobs and even the sound to some extent makes you feel like you are playing a vintage amplifier.
The two things I like the most about this amp’s design are the Classic Fender Logo and the silver grille cloth covering the speakers.
Let’s talk about the various knobs and input/output jacks.
On the far top left, there is an input jack for your guitar.
Next to that, there is a Gain Control. Basically, Gain allows you to increase the Signal Strength.
Then we have the Overdrive button, which as the names suggests puts the amplifier in an overdrive mode.
Next to it, there is Volume knob to control the loudness of the amp.
Then we have the 2-Band EQ. You can control the Bass and Treble with these two knobs.
There are two 1/8″ jacks as well. One of them is for Aux-in which allows you to connect your Phone, or any other Mp3 player. The other one allows you to connect your headphones to the amp (for Silent practice sessions).
At the end, we have the Power button to turn the amp on or off. (Pretty obvious, right? but still gotta say it…)
The amp has a closed-back construction that means the back of the amplifier is covered to hide the speakers and other components inside.
The body of the amp is covered with a Black Textured Vinyl. The cabinet is made of 7-Ply 3/4″ Medium-Density Fibreboard as per the Fender Official Website.
The only things about the amp’s design that disappointed me are the knobs. The quality of the knobs is flimsy. I feel that the Marshall MG series amps have a better Knob quality.
The amp is fairly lightweight (approx. 3.8 kg) and even fits in my Laptop bag.
It’s so compact and portable, I can literally carry it around to work everyday if I wanted to.
Design-wise, this amp is perfect for anyone who loves the Fender Brand and is looking for a Small practice amp or a back-up amp.
If you want to read the full detailed specification of this amp, Click Here.
Let us now talk about the sounds this amplifier can produce.
You can control and customize the sound with the 4 knobs at the front.
You can adjust the Gain with the Gain Knob. It amplifies your input signal and increases the loudness as well. Too much gain can cause the sound on this amp to crack.
Around 3-5 is the sweet spot for me and most of the other players. You can of course experiment and find what’s the best-sounding gain level for you.
Nothing much to discuss about the volume knob. You can adjust it as per your requirements. The speakers are surprisingly loud for the size of the amp. But they can’t handle the max levels and give up.
Obviously, it is only a 10W amp. This is expected.
This is where the magic happens.
The Bass knobs filters-out most of the high frequencies and gives you a thick, mellow sound rich in low frequencies.
The treble knob does the exact opposite of the bass knob. It accentuates the higher frequencies giving you a crisp, clear, and twangy sound.
If you reduce the bass to 1 or 2 and increase treble all the way to 10, you’ll get a very sharp and clear sound that is perfect for Funk styles.
On the contrary, if you pull down the treble to 1 or 2 and dial up the bass to 10, you’ll get a thick and full tone. This setting is ideal for playing heavy rhythm sections or achieving a fat and warm tone for blues or jazz
Most people like to keep both the knobs at 12 O’Clock position. I like to keep the bass just a bit higher than the treble.
I like the sound in this setting of the EQ.
The amp has two channels – Clean and Overdrive. (Even though the company says it has One)
The Clean tones on this amp sounded surprisingly good through my Magna ST20M Guitar.
I could play rhythm, leads, and arpeggios and they all sounded good.
The sound is perfect for people who love the Classic Fender Clean tones.
Although the sound is not as good as the higher-end amps, but still for the price, I think the clean tones are quite decent and certainly acceptable.
This is where the amp falls short. The Overdriven tones did not meet my expectations.
I’m someone who likes to play Rock and Heavy Metal a lot. This amp isn’t meant for those genres.
Yes, you can play these genres, they will sound decent but far from great.
The sounds are great if you love to play Blues/Jazz, Punk, and Classic Rock, perhaps.
But if you crank up the gain to anything above 8, the sound loses its punch and becomes muddy.
In my opinion, with mild distortion and gain, you can achieve some cool tones on this amp.
Does the Fender Frontman 10G Chug?
Ola Englund has demonstrated this amp and answered the question in the video above.
Do listen to it, if you’re interested. But the short answer is, No.
In conclusion, this amp provides some good clean and crunchy/overdriven tones but is not capable of providing any good distorted tone for genres such as Metal and Hardcore Punk.
Is this incapability a deal-breaker? For me, Yes. I wish it had a better-distorted tone and at least one effect such as Reverb.
But for a beginner, I don’t think these things make much difference.
The amp has many features that make it a good option for a beginner guitar player. (Check the Pros and Cons section)
This is one of the easiest amps to use.
With simplified controls, the learning curve with this amp is next to None.
Just 4 knobs and a power button. That’s it.
This kind of setup is perfect for a beginner guitar player to get started.
Moreover, as mentioned earlier, it is lightweight and portable. So, if these two things are in your checklist, the Fender Frontman 10G is the perfect amp for you.
Just plug your guitar in and you’re ready to go!
However, for intermediate and advanced, players this amp is not a good choice. If you are low on budget, consider going for a Boss Katana Mini or a Marshall MG series amp. These amps will give you great tones.
VALUE FOR MONEY
Fender Frontman 10G is a value-for-money amp, especially for beginners or those on a budget.
It has simple features that are easy to use and offer a decent range of tones.
I mean, it’s priced at roughly 6500 rupees. What more do you expect from the amp?
For a fair price, You get the Classic Fender Clean and Overdriven tones, a Good-looking portable amp.
The Fender frontman 10G is certainly better than the cheap local and Chinese amps which retail on Amazon at 1500-3000 rupees. Please stay away from those! They’re just bad!
PROS AND CONS
Below are the Pros and Cons of the Fender Frontman 10G Amplifier:
|✅ Affordable||❌Knob Quality is OK|
|✅ Very easy to use||❌ Distorted Tones are NOT good.|
|✅ Portable & Light-weight||❌ No Extra Effects (Ex. Reverb)|
|✅ Good Build Quality||❌ Better Options available|
|✅ Good Clean & Crunch Tones||❌ No Provision for connecting Mics |
or Recording interfaces directly.
|✅ Can connect to Mp3 Player|
MAKE FRONTMAN 10G SOUND BETTER
Before you make your final decision, you should know that there are a few things you can do to make budget amps like the frontman 10G sound much better.
Use A Reverb Pedal
Adding a reverb pedal to your inexpensive amp or finding an amp with a built-in reverb can make a significant difference in the sound quality.
Reverb can add depth and ambiance to your guitar tone, making it sound fuller and more professional.
Use Less Gain
Using gain sparingly can help you achieve a cleaner and better sound. Using too much gain can cause your sound to become muddy and lose clarity.
Setting the gain to a moderate level and experimenting with different settings can help you find the sweet spot.
Set EQ very flat
Set the EQ on the amp very flat before making any adjustments. This means setting all the knobs at the 12 o’clock position so that there are no boosts or cuts in the frequencies.
This approach ensures that you start with a neutral and balanced tone, which can then be fine-tuned to your liking.
Use high-quality cables, always. Experimenting with different pickups, and adjusting the tone controls can help you achieve better tones as well.
So, Even with affordable amps, it’s possible to achieve great-sounding guitar tones.
FENDER FRONTMAN 10G ALTERNATIVES
For the same price or slightly more, you can get amps which can sound better than the Frontman 10G.
I’ve compared some of the alternative amps that are popular in the Budget Amps Segment.
|Frontman 10G||VOX Pathfinder 10||Boss Katana Mini|
|Inputs||1 Guitar, 1 Aux-in||1 Guitar||1 Guitar, 1 Aux-in|
|Outputs||1 Headphone||1 Headphone||1 Headphone|
Volume, Treble, Bass
|Volume, Gain, Bass, |
|Volume, Middle, Bass, |
Treble, Time, Level
|Amp type||Solid State||Solid State||Solid State|
|Weight||3.8 kg||4.8 kg||1.2 kg|
|Best Buy Link||Amazon||Amazon||Amazon|
You can also watch the below video which compares the sound of the Fender Frontman 10G with other Budget amplifiers such as the Marshall MG10, VOX Pathfinder 10, and Orange Crush 12.
I personally own a Marshall MG15CF and can vouch for it. It has a great distortion tone and Cleans are also pretty good. According to me, It’s the best Guitar Amp for a beginner.
If you can stretch your budget a bit, I think you should go for the Marshall MG15CF or MG15CFX.
If you can’t extend your budget, the Marshall MG10, its little brother, is also a very good option.
Instead of going for a Fender Frontman 10G, you can definitely go for a Marshall MG10.
Another amp that I can recommend is the Laney LX10. It sounds great as well.
I’d recommend that you listen to the sound demo in the video above and decide which one you like the most. Go with what your heart says!
In conclusion, the Fender Frontman 10G is a decent and affordable guitar amp that provides good sound quality and versatility for beginners and experienced players.
Its compact size, lightweight design, and simple controls make it a great choice for practicing at home or on the go.
Some people may or may not like its Clean tones, Others may or may not like its overdriven tones.
Ultimately the decision is yours to make. Don’t just go with my words, Listen to the sounds of all the budget amps we’ve discussed and then decide if the Frontman 10G is, indeed, the best option for you.
How much does the Fender Frontman 10G cost?
The Fender Frontman 10G typically costs around 7000 rupees
What kind of guitar genre is the Fender Frontman 10G best suited for?
The Fender Frontman 10G is suitable for a wide range of guitar genres, including jazz, blues, pop, and more.
Can I play Metal on the Fender Frontman 10G?
Frankly Speaking, No. It is not meant for heavy Music. You can go ahead and try to play such Genres but it may not sound the best.
Is the Fender Frontman 10G loud enough to use for small gigs or performances?
While the Fender Frontman 10G is not designed for larger gigs or performances, it can provide enough volume for small gigs or jam sessions.
Does the Fender Frontman 10G come with any built-in effects or distortion?
The Fender Frontman 10G does not come with built-in effects or distortion, but you can use external pedals or processors.
Can I connect my phone or other devices to the Fender Frontman 10G for backing tracks or jamming along with songs?
Yes, the Fender Frontman 10G has an aux input that allows you to connect your phone or other devices for jamming along with songs.
How easy is it to use the Fender Frontman 10G’s control panel and adjust the settings?
The Fender Frontman 10G’s control panel is straightforward and easy to use, allowing you to adjust the settings quickly and easily.
Is the Fender Frontman 10G durable and well-built?
The Fender Frontman 10G is well-built and durable, with a solid construction that can withstand frequent use and transport.
Can the Fender Frontman 10G be used with headphones for silent practice?
Yes, the Fender Frontman 10G has a headphone jack that allows for silent practice.
Does the Fender Frontman 10G have any options for recording or direct output?
The Fender Frontman 10G does not have a built-in recording or direct output, but you can use external recording devices or processors.
How does the Fender Frontman 10G compare to other similar-sized practice amps on the market?
The Fender Frontman 10G is a decent amp that is better than many cheap amps out there.