Does anyone have any experience with smaller Fender amps (in relation to surf music or otherwise)? I'm thinking specifically the Blues Junior, but reviews for the Pro Junior or Blues Deluxe or really any all-tube Fender (or if you know of a better brand for the same/less money, mention it too) combo amp under $600 are welcome, as I'm still considering options.
Things I'm wondering about:
-Is the built in reverb good/enough for surf music?
-What kind of clean headroom does it have? Enough to turn it up for a small gig?
-Can it get loud enough for a gig at all?
-Alternatively, can it stay quiet enough to practice with? (I will be living in a second floor apartment next year with people above, below and next door [I think], so I don't need/want ear splitting when the volume is at 2 and would enjoy being able to practice in the apartment.)
-When it does get dirty, how dirty can it get? Am I gonna get any power-pop type distortion out of it?
-If I can't just overdrive it to get the desired distortion, how does it sound with pedals? Any suggestions on pedals?
Also, I may be in the market for a new guitar instead of a new amp (just had a birthday and my parents are wondering what I want). Can anyone suggest some good guitars around $400 or less? I'd prefer some versatility for the money I'm paying but that's no big deal. (For the record, I currently own a Squier Cyclone and am looking for something to expand my style. I largely use the humbucker on it, combined with distortion [think weezer], unless I'm playing blues or surf).
Guitars I'm looking at:
-Cyclone II (as a cheapish surf guitar)
-Some kind of semi-hollowbody. I've been looking at Ibanez' Artcore line. (to experiment with jazz, as well as do some rockabilly and various other humbucker type things)
-Telecaster, somewhat on a whim
Right now I'm leaning toward the Artcores.
Lastly, I might be looking for a bass instead. If I got a bass, I'd probably spend less on it (since anything would be an upgrade right now. I've got a $200 amp and a $60 bass with a neck like a ski ramp), so maybe the $200ish range? I've got no idea what's good or what to look for in basses.
(for reference, I play surf-esque music in a band, along with blues in the same band. I play in a side thing that is just me, and the style ranges from acoustic pop to hardcore punk. I am looking to explore jazz and rockabilly too.) Thanks. (This might be crossposted a little).