Boss Katana Mini Vs Blackstar Fly 3 [Difference & Which is better]

When it comes to portable guitar amplifiers, the Boss Katana Mini vs Blackstar Fly 3 are two popular choices among musicians. These mini amps are designed to provide you with a convenient and portable solution for practicing, jamming, or even small gigs.

Boss Katana Mini Vs Blackstar Fly 3

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore into the details of both the Boss Katana Mini and the Blackstar Fly 3 to help you understand their differences and determine which one might be better suited to your needs.

Comparison Table:

Features –Boss Katana MiniBlackstar Fly 3
SoundWarm and full-bodied tones, 3 settings: Brown, Crunch, CleanVersatile tones with ISF control for American/British sound
Speaker Size4-inch speaker for fuller sound3-inch speaker with unique tonal shaping
PortabilityCompact and lightweight, suitable for travelUltra-compact, fits in your hand, ideal for on-the-go
ConnectionGuitar input, auxiliary input, headphone outputGuitar input, auxiliary input, headphone output
BatteryPowered by 6 AA batteries or optional AC adapterPowered by 6 AA batteries or optional DC adapter
PriceMid-range pricing (Approx. $99 to $119 USD)Budget-friendly (Approx. $59 to $79 USD)

Main Difference Between The Boss Katana Mini Vs Blackstar Fly 3:

a) Sound:


When it comes to sound quality, both the Boss Katana Mini and the Blackstar Fly 3 excel in their own right, but they do have distinct characteristics.

The Katana Mini is known for its warmer and fuller sound, thanks in part to its larger 4-inch speaker. It has a more traditional amplifier sound, making it suitable for various genres, from clean jazz tones to high-gain rock. The three selectable sound settings provide versatility and flexibility.

On the other hand, the Blackstar Fly 3’s unique ISF control gives it a broader tonal range. You can dial in a more American-style sound with scooped mids or opt for a British-inspired tone with pronounced midrange. The “tape delay” effect adds an atmospheric quality to your sound. If you prefer a compact amp with a unique character, the Fly 3 may be your choice.

b) Speaker Size:

The size of the speaker in a mini amplifier has a significant impact on the overall sound quality and volume projection. The Boss Katana Mini features a 4-inch speaker, while the Blackstar Fly 3 has a 3-inch speaker.

The larger speaker in the Katana Mini contributes to a more substantial and detailed sound. It can reproduce lower frequencies with more clarity, which is making it suitable for players who want a mini amp that approaches the sound quality of a larger practice amp.

The Fly 3’s 3-inch speaker, while smaller, still offers a respectable sound, especially considering its compact size. The unique ISF control and tape delay effect help compensate for its smaller speaker size by adding tonal versatility and depth to the sound.

If you prioritize fuller, more traditional amp tones, the Katana Mini’s larger speaker may be preferable. However, if you value portability and a unique tonal palette, the Fly 3’s smaller speaker with its ISF control may be more appealing.

c) Portability:

Portability is a key consideration when choosing a mini amplifier, as these amps are designed to be carried around easily. Both the Boss Katana Mini and the Blackstar Fly 3 excel in this regard, but there are differences in their form factors.

The Katana Mini, while still compact, is slightly larger and heavier than the Fly 3. Its dimensions are manageable, and it weighs around 3.3 pounds. This size allows for a larger speaker and more comprehensive controls, but it may be less pocket-friendly.

The Blackstar Fly 3 is incredibly small and lightweight, designed to fit in the palm of your hand. It’s a true “grab-and-go” amplifier, making it ideal for traveling, busking, or simply carrying in your gig bag. Its minimalist design doesn’t sacrifice sound quality, making it a fantastic option for musicians on the move.

If ultimate portability is your priority, the Blackstar Fly 3’s tiny footprint and low weight make it the clear winner. However, if you’re willing to sacrifice a bit of portability for a larger speaker and more control options, the Katana Mini is still quite portable.

d) Connection:

The Katana Mini provides a single input for your guitar and an auxiliary input for connecting external devices like your smartphone or MP3 player. This is a handy feature if you want to play along with backing tracks or jam to your favorite songs.

Similar to the Katana Mini, the Fly 3 provides a guitar input as well as an auxiliary input for connecting external devices. It also has a headphone output for private practice, which can be a valuable feature for late-night or silent practicing.

e) Battery:


The Boss Katana Mini excels in its power options, offering remarkable versatility. You can power it using six AA batteries, making it exceptionally adaptable for outdoor performances or scenarios where access to a power source may be limited. Alternatively, you have the option to use an additional AC adapter for uninterrupted power supply.

As for the Blackstar Fly 3, it operates on either six AA batteries or, for added flexibility, an optional DC adapter. This battery-powered feature proves advantageous in situations demanding a portable solution, capable of providing several hours of operation on a single set of batteries.

f) Price:

Boss Katana Mini priced at approximately $99 to $119 USD. The Blackstar Fly 3 was commonly priced in the range of $59 to $79 USD. This lower price point, coupled with its compact size & unique features. that makes it an excellent option for beginners, students, and those looking for a cost-effective practice amplifier.

Which is Better Performance?

The choice between the Boss Katana Mini and the Blackstar Fly 3 ultimately depends on your individual preferences and requirements. Here’s a quick summary to help you make an informed decision:

Choose the Boss Katana Mini if:

  • You prioritize sound quality and want a warmer, fuller tone.
  • A larger speaker for enhanced sound projection is important to you.
  • You don’t mind a slightly larger and heavier form factor for added control options.
  • You need the flexibility of both battery and AC power options.
  • You’re willing to invest a bit more for the added features and sound quality.

Choose the Blackstar Fly 3 if:

  • Portability is your top priority, and you want an ultra-compact and lightweight amp.
  • You value unique tonal shaping options, thanks to the ISF control.
  • You’re on a tight budget and need an affordable practice solution.
  • You prefer a minimalist design with straightforward controls.
  • You want the flexibility of battery-powered operation for on-the-go playing.

In the end, both the Boss Katana Mini vs Blackstar Fly 3 are excellent mini amplifiers that offer distinct advantages. Your decision should align with your playing style, tonal preferences, and how and where you plan to use the amp. Regardless of your choice, these mini amps are sure to enhance your practice sessions and provide a convenient solution for small gigs and impromptu jamming.

FAQs –

Q. Is Blackstar Fly 3 good for beginners?

Answer: Yes, the Blackstar Fly 3 is a great choice for beginners due to its affordability, portability, and versatile tones, making it suitable for practice and learning.

Q. What is the Blackstar Fly 3 used for?

Answer: The Blackstar Fly 3 is primarily used as a practice amplifier for electric guitars. Its compact size and unique tonal shaping options make it ideal for practice, jamming, and impromptu performances.

Q. Is Blackstar Fly 3 good for metal?

Answer: While the Blackstar Fly 3 is versatile, it may not be the best choice for heavy metal genres that require extremely high gain and power. It can produce some overdriven tones but may not deliver the extreme distortion needed for certain metal styles.

Last Updated on September 17, 2023 by Perry Garner

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