There are at least a dozen Peavey guitar amps that are great for playing skull-crushing metal, but they are all a distant second after our top choice for the best amp for metal, the Peavey 6505+112 Combo. It was designed for heavy skull splitting riffs.
The Peavey 6505+ is a powerful, high-gain guitar combo amp, whose pedigree we can trace back to when it was known as the Peavey 5150 in the early 90’s. The Peavey 5150 was created in collaboration with guitar legend Eddie Van Halen. It was an insanely popular, best selling amplifier among metal guitarist, and known for its outstanding face-melting, hard tones.
The 5150 amplifier was a staple in the metal community until the dissolution of their relationship in 2004. Van Halen maintained power over the 5150 name, but Peavey kept the most important thing, the amp itself, along with all of its gloriously aggressive distortion. It was renamed the Peavey 6505 in honor of their 40th anniversary (1965-2005). Changed name aside, this powerhouse of an amplifier remains a go-to for many heavy musicians. Now enough with the history lesson, let’s get to why exactly we think this amplifier is the bees knees.
The Peavey 6505 60-watt combo packs plenty of soul-crushing distortion into a compact package, putting you in total control of its tonal capabilities. Five select 12AX7 preamp tubes and a pair of 6L6GC power amp tubes provide the tonal foundation for the 6505 combo, while the patented circuitry of Peavey’s Resonance control tweak its legendary tone. Both the Lead and Rhythm channels feature independent three-band EQ, pre/post gain controls and Presence and Resonance adjustment. The Rhythm channel also includes a footswitchable Crunch boost.
The 6505 Plus 112 combo guitar amp also features the Peavey MSDI microphone-simulated direct interface, which allows you to route the amp directly to a recording device or mixing console. Additional features include: three-spring reverb, effects loop and external speaker outputs, plus a 12 in Sheffield loudspeaker in a sealed-back cabinet, maximal resonance and sound projection.
This amp was built for thrashing, there is no Clean channel, both options are high-gain and gritty. Plug your axe into the all-tube Peavey 6505 combo, and you’ll immediately understand what made its predecessor, the revered 5150, such a favorite among hard rockers and metal players. The delightfully meaty tones this amp produces when driven to its apex is one of the main reasons we feel its the best metal amp. Get down to your local shop and give it a spin, we’re sure this amp will be at the top of your list too.