Katana MK2 or BlackStar Debut 50R.?

I own a Boss Katana MK2. Man. Too much. I watched and worked on Justin’s Katana series videos. I’m okay with it but I like simple. Has anyone seen, bought, and/or played with the BlackStar Debut 50R? It’s analog and seems good for the money… I don’t know … the many features of the Katana are good but I just don’t “vibe” with them lol



Welcome to the community.

If you want simple, then you can just ignore the effects and other options. A lot of people use the Katana and never use the Tone Studio to tweak the tones. There are some who ignore the built-in effects completely and just use it with external pedals or effects units.

Find a setting you like (e.g. crunch, or clean with a booster) and stick with it, and explore it using the EQ controls. That’s basically what you’ll have on a simpler amp.

Note that the Katana power amp is a class AB analogue design.

Of course, no harm in a simpler amp, but I would suggest trying out before you commit.




Thanks… I do like the amp, just overwhelmed with theTone Studio’s options. I’ll try your advice.

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When I had my Katana, 90% of the time I had it on the Clean setting with the Blues Driver booster setting.

The clean setting on the Katana is pretty good, and it dirties up a little if you turn up the gain, even without a booster.

Then you can turn up the booster setting to add more dirt. As I said, my preference was for the Blues Driver, which is the green setting, but I don’t tend to go for high gain tones that much.

Then adjust the booster level and gain to suit

For EQ I would start with the bass, mid, and treble knobs at 12 O’clock and tweak from there.

Personally, I tended to turn the bass down a bit, leave the treble at midway, and adjust the mids up and down depending on whether I wanted mid boosted or scooped.

But it also depends a lot on the type of guitar you are using, as well as the acoustics of your room.

That was then my baseline tone, and I would store that in a patch and use that most of the time.

Then I also had a clean tone which was the same setting but with the booster turned down or even fully off.

Start with something like this and tweak the gain and EQ and you should be able to get some great tones.

Of course you will probably want some reverb too.

There’s plenty more you can do from the top panel controls without plugging in a PC, but I would leave that until you feel ready to explore it and are comfortable with getting the basic tone you want.




Hi Demetrios, I’m a grade one newbie so absolutely no clue what you’re talking about……so my answer will just be welcome to the community



I completely agree with Majik. You gan get some solid tones just by using the top panel on the amp. You don’t have to connect it to BTS at all - although the real magic happens there.

Pick a channel, preferably clean or crunch. Adjust the EQ to your liking and maybe add some subtle reverb. That’s it.

If and when you start getting into effects, take your time to try them one by one. Don’t combine any effects yet because that will only confuse you.

If you’re like most users, there are maybe 3 to 5 effects that you’ll really like. The rest is just a bit of fun. The most common ones to try out first are a booster (overdrive/distortion), reverb and delay.

First set an effect to its extreme setting (level/drive) to see what it can do. Then find the sweet spot.

Once you found an effect you want to use often, you can assign it to one of the buttons on the amp. Do this for all the effects you like and you won’t need to reconnect your amp to BTS after that, everything will be available on the amp.

From there it’s all a matter of preference. Some people don’t use any effects at all, others go real crazy. Both have their use.

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If when you’ve tried that out and still can’t get on with it take a look at an Orange crush 35RT, simple but amazingly good and all analog circuitry!

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I’m actually learning to like this amp now! Thank you…

I think I’m liking the Katana :slightly_smiling_face:

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He has series for just using the panel for various genres (blues, rock, metal etc). There also a Justin interview with him on the JG site.

Welcome, @Jimgatos !

Thank you!

Yup. Found that and I also found the Katana videos Justin made with Juca Nery. Thank you folks … I think I will have some stuff to learn now with the Katana.

If you want to learn more about how to use the Katana, I also recommend The Studio Rats, on Youtube, for instance:

Bear in mind, most of this type of video will be diving into low-level editing using Boss Tone Studio, because they are about learning how to get the best from your amp, and how to use BTS to explore some of the more esoteric effects.

Although in a lot of cases, they are just using BTS as the top part of it mirrors the control panel, so it’s a good way to clearly show what is happening on the control panel.

I want to emphasise that, for baseline tones and simple effects, you can do everything you need from the top panel in pretty much the same way as you could on a more conventional amp):



Thank you and I’ll view these later today :blush: