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How to Play Electro-Acoustic Guitar Through an Electric Amp

By Matthew Anderson ; Updated October 03, 2017
Play Electro-Acoustic Guitar Through an Electric Amp

The electro-acoustic guitar was primarily developed to more easily be amplified than a standard acoustic guitar. Rather than attempting to catch the sound of the guitar with a microphone, the guitar plugs into an amp like an electric guitar. An electro-acoustic player usually just wants the amp to make the guitar louder, unlike an electric guitarist that uses the amp as part of the tone process. An electro-acoustic player can minimize the tone coloration on an electric amp.

Plug the instrument cable in the electro-acoustic guitar jack. On many guitars this can be mistaken for the bottom strap pin of the guitar.

Plug the instrument cable into the input jack on the electric amp.

On multiple channel amps, switch to the "Clean" channel. Some amps also refer to this as the "Normal" channel.

On amps with one channel, turn the "Drive" or "Gain" knob to 0. Turn any amp effects off.

Turn the Treble, Mid and Bass knobs to 5. Try playing a few chords, you may need to experiment with these knobs to improve the tone.

Tip

When plugged into an amp, electro-acoustic guitars produce more string noise than just when played purely acoustically. You may need to mute the strings a bit more to get a nice, clear tone without excess background noise.

If the guitar is not producing any sound, make sure the volume slider is not all the way down. If the volume is not the problem, the battery inside the guitar preamp may need to be changed.

Warning

Avoid unplugging or plugging in anything when the amp is on. This can create all sorts of unpleasant noises and can potentially damage the speaker.

Check to make sure the master volume on the amp is fairly low before turning on the amp if it is 50 watts or more.

About the Author

Matthew Anderson started as a writer and editor in 2003. He has written content used in a textbook published by Wiley Publishing, among other publications. Anderson majored in chemical engineering and has training in guitar performance, music theory and song composition.