Updated by Bobby
Updated on January 27th, 2022
Though I've seen varying reports on the number of tubes in the Micro Dark, the current version only has one 12AX7 tube in the preamp, same as the Micro Terror.
What is the difference between the Orange Micro Dark 20 and the Orange Micro Terror 20?
Both are extremely similar and popular amp heads that can be monitored through headphones and hooked up to an external speaker cab. But we're going to compare the two of them side-by-side, via the comparison tool below.
What are the significant spec variations between them? Are they both pretty much the same amp?
Read more: Best Orange amps
If so, why the price difference?
We'll answer these questions in this article.
For basic pricing and feature differences, use the Compare+ buttons in this table:
Orange Micro Dark VS Micro Terror Comparison Tool
Orange Dark Micro 20
Orange Micro Terror 20
There are a couple basic feature differences between the two. First, the Micro Dark has an effects loop, while the Micro Terror does not. A second difference is an auxiliary input in the Micro Terror, which is missing from the Dark terror.
Both have a 12AX7 tube-driven preamp with a solid state power amp.
From what we can tell the Micro Dark and Micro Terror each have one tube in the preamp, though I've seen conflicting information concerning whether the Micro Dark has one or two. At the time of updating this article, we're fairly certain the Micro Dark has a single 12AX7 tube in the preamp.
Let's cover each amp individually.
Orange Micro Terror 20 Details
The Micro Terror is the cheaper of the two amplifiers, with an auxiliary input on the front panel and a tone knob.
On the back panel of the Micro Terror we can easily see a single 12AX7 preamp tube (the power amp section is solid state with no tubes). The Terror also has the single speaker output but is missing an effects loop, which is included in the Dark.
Obviously the effects loop is a functionality feature worth consideration, though folks who aren't concerned with that won't have a lot of additional info to go on. Both amps sound good, particular on heavier settings with higher gain. We liked the clean sound on the Micro Dark a little better, but the cheaper Terror is certainly comparable.
Orange Micro Dark 20 Details
On the Micro Dark's front panel, you're missing the AUX input, and have the tone knob replaced by a "Shape" knob, which serves essentially the same purpose.
On the back panel we can see the 12AX7 tube and the added FX loop, which could be significant for players bringing external effects to their Micro rig.
Both power amps are solid state, so the tubes only impact the preamp stage of amplification. The speaker out is also the same on both back panels, with a minimum eight ohm rating.
Summary of Our Comparison
This is one of the more difficult comparison we've done, since there's so little difference between the two amps. The aux input and effects loops are easy targets, and should be considered first. Note that an aux input would let you plug in something like an MP3 player so you could play along with music tracks.
Otherwise, we'd prefer to go with the Micro Dark, just because it seems to improve the clean tone and has a little bit of extra power.
More important than deciding between the two, we'd view both the Micro Terror and Micro Dark as practice amps and indoor jamming tools. We would not recommend them as your rig's main amplifier, especially not for recording or performing live.
If you have an external speaker and you want a solid practice amp that can handle some distortion and let you monitor through headphones, both these amps are solid options.
For anything that requires a little more versatility and pro-grade guitar work, we'd look elsewhere.
If you have questions about the Micro Dark 20 or Micro Terror 20, feel free to leave them in the comments section below and we'll do our best to help out.