The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

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Blue Cat Audio
KVRAF
4034 posts since 8 Sep, 2004 from Paris (France)

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 5:04 am

Thanks again for taking the time to try out Axiom and review it! Here are my 2 cents about your findings and a few topics that might be worth discussing. Sorry for the long post!

Regarding complexity, as you mention, it can indeed be very deep if you want to, but it is just an option. Some of our customers (who are scared to open Pandora's box) rarely get into the details and just work with presets from the main panel: in AXIOM you can just load effect chains presets and Amp sim presets (they work like amp models, even though they are not exact replicates of existing gear), and tweak the usual amp-style parameters, without getting into the details.

If you want to build your own amp model, you just open the amp editor (a built-in Destructor), and it is possible to create new models only by selecting existing presets for the preamp, destruction and "post filter"/cab sections. Of course, once become experienced with it, you usually want to get more control over the tone and start expanding modules one after the other...

There is also a new version coming soon, with a brand new way to create new tones without getting into the expert mode nor combining module presets, but we will probably talk about it later.

About factory presets: they indeed have to be adapted to your taste and playing. As you mentioned, there are several types of presets, not just global presets (which number has been limited on purpose: who uses multi effects factory presets out of the box?): several hundreds of predefined amp models and effects chains can be combined together to create your own tone, and that's the preferred way to get started (most of the settings I personally use are built this way, using stock amp and delay presets or sub-presets without any tweak). The upcoming presets browser will make this process more intuitive and much faster.

About Late Replies: I am very glad that you like it! It has probably the same pros and cons as Axiom regarding complexity, given its similar "Matryoshka doll" design: you can create your tone out of presets or sub presets for each section, or go deeper and deeper while opening up all the components to tweak the tone in details. "Gourmet Delay" sounds like a great name for a French company! :tu:

Oh and if you want to get really deep into plug-inception, you can load Axiom inside Late Replies inside Axiom inside... :bang:

Reference to Trash: it is funny that you mention it, because it was part of the long list of plug-ins that I tried a long time ago, looking for an "in the box" solution to replace all sort of physical preamps, multi-effects, tube amps and cabs. But it did not work for me. What's very different with Destructor is that each section is packed with presets based on typical guitar/bass/other gear responses, so creating your tone is less of a challenge, especially if you have no clue about how it is supposed to work. The other thing is that static wave shaping does not work if you want to get the typical dynamic response of amps most guitarists are used to (whether it comes from the preamp, the power amp, or just your ears that start collapsing because of the sound pressure): I can't play a crunch tone if it does not react to the attack.

About guitar tones & sound design: one thing that I found interesting is that if you look at the shapes of the curves for all the presets that you like (most of them have been synthesized from measurements of existing gear: what's a better starting point than what we guitar players have been used to?), you end up finding out how these shapes influence the tone. And once you really get used to it, you can dial in a tone in expert mode that sounds exactly as you would expect, very quickly. It does not take more time than learning how all these cabinets/microphones and amp models combinations are supposed to sound when you try to replicate the outer world "in the box".

About the "Destructor" name: it is indeed a bit misleading (it's historical)... But if you think about it, the heavy compression & EQing in clean amps or many of the non-linear processors that you can model with the plug-in (which do not necessarily sound like distortion) still completely destroy the original signal, but hopefully making it sound better :-).

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Peter - IK Multimedia
KVRAF
6674 posts since 20 Oct, 2009

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 7:15 am

Mats Eriksson wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 2:45 am
Ryan_IK wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:59 am
... The sag can be easily observed with a test tone sent into AmpliTube...
Hear here. From the horses mouth. From the horses mouth II, Scuffham from S-gear:
...In order to test our software amp, we will use an oscilloscope to probe the virtual amp at different points in the circuit. We apply a pure sine wave and check the resulting signal at various stages in the design...
https://soundbytesmag.net/virtual-amps- ... fham-amps/

Which I think is a major gaffe. You should test with bursts. Like some British company does with their Tubes. Harma (Watford valves). From silent and the initial transient attack, the peak, before there's even oscillation and note/tone going on in the string. The explosives, the thums, the TSCHKKS (!).

A test tone or sine wave tells me nothing. The "modeled" tube doesn't go from silent to a high enery peak, but it's a stale stable and uniform sine wave. Nice smooth, and buttery, not scaring the tubes.

Order: scare the heck out of the modelled tubes first, with burts. Burst first. THEN go on with the lame sine wave test tones.
You took a statement about how a test tone would be a simple method to show the sag which was of course created and tested with far more complexity, and twisted it to imply that's all we do. That's completely disingenuous, and I think you know it.

We do MUCH more than that - obvious from the results, I'd say - and you can try to minimize it by twisting things out of context but I'm pretty sure most of KVR can see through those shenanigans quite easily by now.

If you're trying to goad us into going more "under the hood" about how we create our acclaimed modeling, that's also not going to happen - unless you want to apply and get accepted as a talented member of the IK team. For that, you can find a list of open positions here: https://www.ikmultimedia.com/jobs/
NEW: AmpliTube Brian May
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What you got just ain't interesting (or true).

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audiojunkie
KVRAF
2906 posts since 19 Apr, 2002 from Utah

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:28 am

Anderton wrote:
Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:50 pm
This probably goes without saying, but I welcome any comments (pro or con) from Blue Cat. These are obviously very creative people :), so I'd be interested in any insights regarding the program and its creation. But that's strictly optional...I'm sure they have quite a long to-do list, as do I.
Great write-up! I learned some new things that I really liked! There are a couple of things that I think you missed:

One, unlike just about everything else on the planet, Axiom uses a simple serial number (at least I believe they still do), which means that the paying customer is not hassled and punished (read: made to jump through copy protection hoops) because of pirates. REALLY APPRECIATED!! Note: I do recognize that there are many who are unbothered by copy protection, but I for one dislike anything that hassles my usage of a paid app. I use Linux, and the fact that Axiom uses a simple serial number means that my chances of getting Axiom to work in Linux through WINE will be that much better. 8)

And two (and this is a big one): The Re-guitar component (which is listed as included in Axiom on the front page of the Axiom site). I was hoping to get your opinions on this part of the program as well. I suspect you may not have noticed it, otherwise you would surely have mentioned it. :-)

Overall, a great write up! This program looks to be something that's right down my alley, since my interest is currently in the dreamy, ambient, droning, spacey guitar sounds (as well as the usual rock guitar tones. And since I was the one who was really, really asking for yout to review Axiom, I want you to know how much I appreciate you spending the time to do it!! Thank you! :D
C/R, dongles & other intrusive copy protection equals less-control & more-hassle for consumers. Company gone-can’t authorize. Limit to # of auths. Instability-ie PACE. Forced internet auths. THE HONEST ARE HASSLED, NOT THE PIRATES.

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Anderton
KVR Expert
128 posts since 4 Mar, 2004
KVR Expert

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:38 am

audiojunkie wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:28 am
Great write-up! I learned some new things that I really liked! There are a couple of things that I think you missed:

One, unlike just about everything else on the planet, Axiom uses a simple serial number (at least I believe they still do), which means that the paying customer is not hassled and punished (read: made to jump through copy protection hoops) because of pirates.
Excellent point, thanks for bringing that up.
And two (and this is a big one): The Re-guitar component (which is listed as included in Axiom on the front page of the Axiom site). I was hoping to get your opinions on this part of the program as well. I suspect you may not have noticed it, otherwise you would surely have mentioned it. :-)
It's under the Built-In FX section. Here's what the electric one offers:

Image

But it also does acoustic simulations...

Image

It's basically sophisticated EQ. I did a lot of guitar modeling for the ill-fated Gibson FBX, which involved analyzing guitars to find their spectral response. But, it was a much easier task because the FBX pickup providing the signal was 100% known and consistent. I didn't have to do one model assuming someone was using a single coil, someone else was using the bridge pickup or the neck, etc.

As far as I can tell, Re-Guitar does not involve profiling your instrument, like BIAS and Peavey do. So if you want a Variax-like model of a guitar sound, you may or may not get that, depending on the source guitar. However, what you do get is useful tonal variations.

I just received a beta for the new Peavey module that does "re-guitaring." I have several of the actual guitars Blue Cat, BIAS, and Peavey offer as transformations of your existing guitar. Although not really about amp sims per se, I'm hoping at some point to spend some serious time in the studio trying these different approaches, and finding out which ones sound most like the target instruments. Until I can do a more thorough review, for the moment I'll say that Re-Guitar provides useful tonal variations that do capture characteristic guitar sounds. Of course, the most difficult sound to capture is an acoustic guitar but it still sounds very much like an acoustic with an internal pickup.

So...download the demo, try it for yourself, and see what you think! Feel free to share your opinions here.
Overall, a great write up! This program looks to be something that's right down my alley, since my interest is currently in the dreamy, ambient, droning, spacey guitar sounds (as well as the usual rock guitar tones).
You are the target audience, for sure!!! You will be able to get your usual rock guitar tones, but what you can do in terms of sound design with Axiom is off the hook. I've not encountered any amp sim that is as comfortable in sound design-land as Axiom.
My educational website has launched! Read articles, see videos, read reviews, and more at https://craiganderton.org. Check out my music at YouTube.com/thecraiganderton, and visit my digital storefront at https://craiganderton.com. Thanks!

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Anderton
KVR Expert
128 posts since 4 Mar, 2004
KVR Expert

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:43 am

Hello Blue Cat - thank you for your comments!
Blue Cat Audio wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 5:04 am
Regarding complexity, as you mention, it can indeed be very deep if you want to, but it is just an option. Some of our customers (who are scared to open Pandora's box) rarely get into the details and just work with presets from the main panel: in AXIOM you can just load effect chains presets and Amp sim presets (they work like amp models, even though they are not exact replicates of existing gear), and tweak the usual amp-style parameters, without getting into the details.
True...I immediately wanted to open Pandora's box, so I hit the Edit mode buttons and didn't really think about using it simply...if you put a high-performance Lamborghini in front of me, I'm not going to drive it in first gear. :) That said, I re-visited Axiom for a while today, and pretended the Edit button didn't exist. You're right, it is possible to approach Axiom from a more basic standpoint. Many times, just altering the Dynamics control gave the sound I wanted.
Of course, once become experienced with it, you usually want to get more control over the tone and start expanding modules one after the other...
To me, the best thing about Destructor is how the saturation/distortion curves can respond to dynamics. Being able to tweak it to that level is one of the most important features. It often let me take a preset I didn't like so much and turn it into a preset I liked a lot. I also like that the breakup is smooth, as opposed to "switching" from clean to distorted.
About factory presets: Several hundreds of predefined amp models and effects chains can be combined together to create your own tone, and that's the preferred way to get started (most of the settings I personally use are built this way, using stock amp and delay presets or sub-presets without any tweak). The upcoming presets browser will make this process more intuitive and much faster.
Perhaps a "favorites" option would be helpful as well, where presets you use a lot could be placed at the top of the list.
Reference to Trash: it is funny that you mention it, because it was part of the long list of plug-ins that I tried a long time ago, looking for an "in the box" solution to replace all sort of physical preamps, multi-effects, tube amps and cabs. But it did not work for me.
Well to be clear, the sound is different. My comparison was about giving the user more control over what's going on inside, compared to not letting you open Pandora's box.
About guitar tones & sound design: one thing that I found interesting is that if you look at the shapes of the curves for all the presets that you like (most of them have been synthesized from measurements of existing gear: what's a better starting point than what we guitar players have been used to?), you end up finding out how these shapes influence the tone. And once you really get used to it, you can dial in a tone in expert mode that sounds exactly as you would expect, very quickly. It does not take more time than learning how all these cabinets/microphones and amp models combinations are supposed to sound when you try to replicate the outer world "in the box".
I already found that to be the case when using the post-filter. I've done so many virtual cabinets using filtering that I knew exactly what kind of filter responses would give the sound I wanted. But, I am still wrapping my head around the Destructor parameters...that's a learning process!

Some things just require experience, and I think Destructor is one of those. To your point, I pretty much do know what the different mic combinations/placements will sound like in other amp sims, and can call them up quickly, because I've miked so many guitar amps in my time. Of course the sims don't duplicate the experience of physical amps, they simulate it. But they're close enough so that my prior experience comes in handy. I have no prior experience with Destructor; although I know the theory behind transfer functions, the only way to know for sure how a parameter affects the sound is to try it.
My educational website has launched! Read articles, see videos, read reviews, and more at https://craiganderton.org. Check out my music at YouTube.com/thecraiganderton, and visit my digital storefront at https://craiganderton.com. Thanks!

User avatar
audiojunkie
KVRAF
2906 posts since 19 Apr, 2002 from Utah

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:53 am

Anderton wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:38 am
audiojunkie wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:28 am
Great write-up! I learned some new things that I really liked! There are a couple of things that I think you missed:

One, unlike just about everything else on the planet, Axiom uses a simple serial number (at least I believe they still do), which means that the paying customer is not hassled and punished (read: made to jump through copy protection hoops) because of pirates.
Excellent point, thanks for bringing that up.
And two (and this is a big one): The Re-guitar component (which is listed as included in Axiom on the front page of the Axiom site). I was hoping to get your opinions on this part of the program as well. I suspect you may not have noticed it, otherwise you would surely have mentioned it. :-)
It's under the Built-In FX section. Here's what the electric one offers:

Image

But it also does acoustic simulations...

Image

It's basically sophisticated EQ. I did a lot of guitar modeling for the ill-fated Gibson FBX, which involved analyzing guitars to find their spectral response. But, it was a much easier task because the FBX pickup providing the signal was 100% known and consistent. I didn't have to do one model assuming someone was using a single coil, someone else was using the bridge pickup or the neck, etc.

As far as I can tell, Re-Guitar does not involve profiling your instrument, like BIAS and Peavey do. So if you want a Variax-like model of a guitar sound, you may or may not get that, depending on the source guitar. However, what you do get is useful tonal variations.

I just received a beta for the new Peavey module that does "re-guitaring." I have several of the actual guitars Blue Cat, BIAS, and Peavey offer as transformations of your existing guitar. Although not really about amp sims per se, I'm hoping at some point to spend some serious time in the studio trying these different approaches, and finding out which ones sound most like the target instruments. Until I can do a more thorough review, for the moment I'll say that Re-Guitar provides useful tonal variations that do capture characteristic guitar sounds. Of course, the most difficult sound to capture is an acoustic guitar but it still sounds very much like an acoustic with an internal pickup.

So...download the demo, try it for yourself, and see what you think! Feel free to share your opinions here.
Overall, a great write up! This program looks to be something that's right down my alley, since my interest is currently in the dreamy, ambient, droning, spacey guitar sounds (as well as the usual rock guitar tones).
You are the target audience, for sure!!! You will be able to get your usual rock guitar tones, but what you can do in terms of sound design with Axiom is off the hook. I've not encountered any amp sim that is as comfortable in sound design-land as Axiom.
Again, thank you for the very useful information!! So re-guitar does not profile the existing guitar in any way...... I can see why it would be difficult to accurately model the guitar parts/components. But these filters may still have a use. Thanks for checking that part out!! Thanks again!!
C/R, dongles & other intrusive copy protection equals less-control & more-hassle for consumers. Company gone-can’t authorize. Limit to # of auths. Instability-ie PACE. Forced internet auths. THE HONEST ARE HASSLED, NOT THE PIRATES.

mmann
KVRist
33 posts since 22 Nov, 2015

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:47 am

First of all a quick introduction; my name is Mike Mann and I have been playing guitar for over 50 years, but not as a professional guitar player. I'm fortunate in that I got to retire just after my 52nd birthday, which gives me plenty of time for playing guitar!

I was going to write my mini reviews in the order that the original main reviews were presented, but I thought at this point I will comment on the latest one while still freshly minted.

Blue Cat’s Axiom
The Interface:
Very clean and resizeable (in set amounts only, unfortunately).

The Amps:
With Axiom you have only one, Destructor. So it is lucky that this amp is very versatile and (despite the name) very good at clean as well as distortion.

The Effects:
My picks; the Late Replies delay is actually one of the best delay plugins available. The Re-Guitar plugin is fun to play with, although for acoustic guitar, it's good but not the best of my available options.
Not so good; Most of the supplied effects are capable but certainly not 'head of the class'.

In conclusion:
I have a custom built computer for guitar amp simulation and Axiom is the only one (of my many guitar amp sims) that I run as a standalone application. The main reason is that Axiom has the ability to host third party VST plugins in an endless (CPU limited only) number of levels. All the other sims I run through either Cockos REAPER or (better yet) Blue Cat's PatchWork.

guitarzan
KVRian
1162 posts since 3 Sep, 2005 from Outer Bongolia

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 1:15 pm

Anderton wrote:
Mon Sep 02, 2019 11:22 am
Mats Eriksson wrote:
Mon Sep 02, 2019 9:14 am
Well I think we can all make our wishes what todays amp sims lacks. Otherwise there's little use of evolving or development.
Of course, side discussions are welcome and helpful. However, there is also the question of how much to keep a thread on topic. To have one person do 26 posts on the same subject, with none of those posts about the topic itself (roundup and review of amp sims), is why I recommended starting a separate thread to help keep this thread focused.
OK, I made the trip to OZ and the Wizard told me to take a hike. Got it.

Guitar Amp Sim for Amp Players?
viewtopic.php?p=7511755

Please — no corporate enforcer goons insisting it's already been done. This is no way directed at or about you in any way, shape, or form. What you got ain't it.

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Anderton
KVR Expert
128 posts since 4 Mar, 2004
KVR Expert

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 2:20 pm

The Wizard just said there's more than one Oz, and this thread ain't it :) Hopefully the responses you get will be germane to the topic you started. This thread will continue to compare and contrast amp sims that currently exist.
My educational website has launched! Read articles, see videos, read reviews, and more at https://craiganderton.org. Check out my music at YouTube.com/thecraiganderton, and visit my digital storefront at https://craiganderton.com. Thanks!

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Anderton
KVR Expert
128 posts since 4 Mar, 2004
KVR Expert

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 2:26 pm

mmann wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:47 am
First of all a quick introduction; my name is Mike Mann and I have been playing guitar for over 50 years, but not as a professional guitar player. I'm fortunate in that I got to retire just after my 52nd birthday, which gives me plenty of time for playing guitar!

I was going to write my mini reviews in the order that the original main reviews were presented, but I thought at this point I will comment on the latest one while still freshly minted.
Thanks, Mike. Looking forward to the next one! As I've said many times, amp sims (like amps and guitars in general) are very subjective, so it helps to have other opinions.
My educational website has launched! Read articles, see videos, read reviews, and more at https://craiganderton.org. Check out my music at YouTube.com/thecraiganderton, and visit my digital storefront at https://craiganderton.com. Thanks!

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audiojunkie
KVRAF
2906 posts since 19 Apr, 2002 from Utah

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Fri Sep 06, 2019 4:08 pm

@Anderton Are you going to review the Kuassa products? :-)
C/R, dongles & other intrusive copy protection equals less-control & more-hassle for consumers. Company gone-can’t authorize. Limit to # of auths. Instability-ie PACE. Forced internet auths. THE HONEST ARE HASSLED, NOT THE PIRATES.

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Blue Cat Audio
KVRAF
4034 posts since 8 Sep, 2004 from Paris (France)

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:05 am

audiojunkie wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:28 am
I use Linux, and the fact that Axiom uses a simple serial number means that my chances of getting Axiom to work in Linux through WINE will be that much better. 8)
Yes, it has been reported to run on Linux, and we could play with it at the office (although low latency probably requires some more work). Of course it may depend on the distribution and how Wine is configured!

User avatar
Blue Cat Audio
KVRAF
4034 posts since 8 Sep, 2004 from Paris (France)

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:20 am

Anderton wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:43 am
I re-visited Axiom for a while today, and pretended the Edit button didn't exist. You're right, it is possible to approach Axiom from a more basic standpoint. Many times, just altering the Dynamics control gave the sound I wanted.
:tu: Another thing that has a lot of influence on the tone is the input level: too high and it may sound too distorted or pumping, and too low and it may sound tiny. That's another difference with guitar amps in the real world (you plug into it and hope the impedance of the instruments is ok). And I am not just talking about Destructor: that's pretty much the case with all simulations. Sometimes you find a plug-in that sounds or feels really bad, until you adjust the input gain and reach the sweet spot.
To me, the best thing about Destructor is how the saturation/distortion curves can respond to dynamics. Being able to tweak it to that level is one of the most important features. It often let me take a preset I didn't like so much and turn it into a preset I liked a lot. I also like that the breakup is smooth, as opposed to "switching" from clean to distorted.
Great! That's what took years to get "right" (=hopefully usable by human beings).
Perhaps a "favorites" option would be helpful as well, where presets you use a lot could be placed at the top of the list.
Indeed. You can also save your favorite presets into your own folders (as you probably have to tweak them anyway). It's also the preferred way if you want to select them with a MIDI pedal board (they are located in their own bank in this case).
I've done so many virtual cabinets using filtering that I knew exactly what kind of filter responses would give the sound I wanted. But, I am still wrapping my head around the Destructor parameters...that's a learning process!
Yes it is. On the preamp side there are also patterns that are worth learning. More on that with the upcoming release too :-).
Some things just require experience, and I think Destructor is one of those. To your point, I pretty much do know what the different mic combinations/placements will sound like in other amp sims, and can call them up quickly, because I've miked so many guitar amps in my time. Of course the sims don't duplicate the experience of physical amps, they simulate it. But they're close enough so that my prior experience comes in handy.

Yes, the issue is that it takes ages to get this experience, especially when different simulations have different tones, and you do not have access to the original gear.

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audiojunkie
KVRAF
2906 posts since 19 Apr, 2002 from Utah

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:21 am

Blue Cat Audio wrote:
Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:05 am
audiojunkie wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:28 am
I use Linux, and the fact that Axiom uses a simple serial number means that my chances of getting Axiom to work in Linux through WINE will be that much better. 8)
Yes, it has been reported to run on Linux, and we could play with it at the office (although low latency probably requires some more work). Of course it may depend on the distribution and how Wine is configured!
Awesome!! Great to know!!!! Are there any high quality sound demos around that you’d recommend?
C/R, dongles & other intrusive copy protection equals less-control & more-hassle for consumers. Company gone-can’t authorize. Limit to # of auths. Instability-ie PACE. Forced internet auths. THE HONEST ARE HASSLED, NOT THE PIRATES.

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Blue Cat Audio
KVRAF
4034 posts since 8 Sep, 2004 from Paris (France)

Re: The Big Guitar Amp Sim Roundup + Review

Post Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:41 am

Anderton wrote:
Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:38 am
I did a lot of guitar modeling for the ill-fated Gibson FBX, which involved analyzing guitars to find their spectral response. But, it was a much easier task because the FBX pickup providing the signal was 100% known and consistent. I didn't have to do one model assuming someone was using a single coil, someone else was using the bridge pickup or the neck, etc.

As far as I can tell, Re-Guitar does not involve profiling your instrument, like BIAS and Peavey do. So if you want a Variax-like model of a guitar sound, you may or may not get that, depending on the source guitar. However, what you do get is useful tonal variations.
Yes, that's indeed a bit of a challenge, but that's why it offers an input selector and additional tone controls that can be used to "calibrate" your own instrument (there is a calibration procedure explained in the manual) or to tweak the response by ear.

I have tried many systems that take measurements of your instrument (most of the time that's some sort of impulse responses) and (to my ears) the result is usually worse than what you can achieve by ear. BTW, Re-Guitar is more focused on "pickup" simulation than "guitar": it is more like changing the pickups on your own instrument, keeping the other characteristics unchanged - unless you add some body or acoustic simulation to it, but you cannot remove the specifics of the original guitar.
Of course, the most difficult sound to capture is an acoustic guitar but it still sounds very much like an acoustic with an internal pickup.
Acoustic tones are indeed a "bonus" and not the main focus of the plug-in. You cannot get the same sound as an acoustic guitar recorded with the right set of microphones in a great room (with a great engineer) anyway: on a electric guitar, strings are different and so is your playing. But it can help, especially in the context of a mix, or in live situations where an acoustic guitar thru a piezo straight into the PA will probably sound much worse that your solid body with the simulation.

Also, it is usually worth spending some time EQing and adding effects (such as reverb) to the transformed tone to get a more realistic result, as explained for example in this acoustic guitar tone tutorial (video below):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NlP76p5LTLg

Bit that's getting a bit off-topic... When talking about acoustic guitar, amps are pretty far away :-).

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