The Blackstar Jared James Nichols JJN-20R MKii


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Aug 9, 2013
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I've really been intrigued by the new Blackstar lines. Especially the HT 20 head and 2x12 cab and the Jared James Nichols JJN-20R head and 2x12 cab. I had a chance to demo both yesterday.

I've seen people say the JJN is the same amp as the HT-20. Well it's definitely a different amp. I swapped speaker cabs and found the following information.

The HT-20 is more of a modern, higher gain amp. More voiced for metal, detuned metal, but can do various styles. It has a chimey, fender esque clean tone.

The Jared James Nichols JJN-20R is a different beast. The amp is voiced for the player that likes an amp to sound like it's on the verge of melt down. The overdrive is full of lush over tones, think dimed modded Plexi or a Soldano SLO-100 on the American side, the British side is like Leslie West, Jimi Hendrix, maybe up to Zakk Wylde Pride and Glory era ( or perhaps Jared James Nichols) The clean tone is very Fender like, Marshall and Vox like are good descriptors.

Needless to say the JJN-20 was among the greatest sounding and fun playing amps I've ever played. I brought a HW 808 tube screamer and this amp kills, it can do SRV, Kossoff, Page, Slash tones. And to me on the 2 watt setting to have "the tone" is amazing. I ended up getting the JJN-20R it's awesome. Check one out if you can.

Clips to come.

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