Guitar amp for home recording

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kvotchin
KVRist
222 posts since 9 Aug, 2018

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:19 pm

So, hoping to record electric guitar via an amp, but at home, without (generally speaking) the ability to go really loud.

Is there such a beast as a tube amp in particular (I prefer them), that can do nice clean and excellent drive . . . all at low to medium dB?

I realise that could be unlikely, great tube drive at low volume, but hey, this is why I’m asking - it might be possible?

TIA

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donkey tugger
Boss Lovin' DR
6247 posts since 15 Mar, 2002 from the grimness of yorkshire

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:36 pm

As an alternative you could get the amp you really want and use an isolation cabinet;

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isolation ... t_(guitar)

I'm no expert in this, but I know some people on here use them and indeed seem to recall have built their own... :scared:

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BertKoor
KVRAF
11312 posts since 8 Mar, 2005 from Utrecht, Holland

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:51 pm

Or use a Koch Loadbox (or simular) instead of a cabinet. It's like a DI at the speaker end of the chain.
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KVRAF
5065 posts since 22 Jan, 2005 from Sweden

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:24 pm

I have a Laney Ironheart Studio which I find really well thought out unit.
There is a 1W input too - and even having no speaker on, doing phones, it default to 1W and have internal load(resistor).

But I use it in normal 15W and loadboxes like mentioned above.

Ironheart is 3 channel, clean, normal lead - and a boost feature also on pedal board, with amount setting how much you want to boost.
Clean + normal share eq section - lead have separate eq section.
Normal and Lead has separate gain+master knobs.

Ironheart can do clean to high gain as you please.

Want more like Marshall - Marshall Origin 20 is also really good and modern. Three wattage selections. This is rather clean in itself to get that raw clean Marshall and still do gain to distort. If you want more like hi gain DSL series is good too, pretty much the same as Origin otherwise.

Otherwise I also have a Fender Superchamp X2 - which is digital emulation, but with tube power amp. I think they are replaced by Mustang series today. They have the digital section open to load emulations of various stomp boxes and effects and stuff. Not bad at all - if taking line out though it's all digital emulation.

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Tappistry
KVRAF
1544 posts since 3 Aug, 2017 from San Diego, CA

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:32 pm

The trouble with tube amps is that they tend to sound the best when they're cranked loud. How good one may sound at low volumes usually depends on the design of the master volume, not just the wattage (although a 100 watt head will probably be immense overkill in any case).

If you must do it "the old fashioned way" vs. recording a tube preamp into your interface with IRs or using VSTs, your best option is probably going to be a good quality attenuator/loadbox that will act as a power soak for the amp. The Fryette PS2 is not a cheap solution, but it's probably one of the best out there because it isn't a typical loadbox. It's an attenuator with it's own tube power stage.

My personal recommendation for what you want to do: there are a TON of great-sounding pedal preamps around these days that cover many genres and flavors of distortion: Victory's V4 series, Friedman, Origin RevivalDrive, Abasi Pathos, KSR Ceres, and many more. These all provide convincing tube amp sound and feel in a small form factor. Just plug them into your interface, load up your favorite cab IR, and call it a day.

stimresp
KVRian
1024 posts since 1 Jul, 2008

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:52 pm

I highly recommend the Laney Lionheart L5. Like it's brother the Ironheart studio, it has USB recording and on-board cabinet emulation so you don't have to disturb the neighbours. Most importantly, it sounds wonderful and is a joy to play through.

While the Ironheart is more high-gain, the Lionheart lends itself more towards more bluesy/jazzy/rock tones. Cleans are lovely and it takes pedals very well. I record mine through the emulated output into an ipad running a looper. Haven't touched (or wanted to touch) a VST sim since.

Before that I had been using an Ironheart Pulse which might be an option - tube tone USB recording and re-amping that really beefs-up Amp sims and provides a decent level of touch response. Now I use it as a tube overdrive pedal in front of the Lionheart. Plenty of tube deliciousness on tap and still the neighbours think I'm a nice quiet boy.

kvotchin
KVRist
222 posts since 9 Aug, 2018

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 12:54 am

I know, it’s probably a bit foolish, wanting to record an overdriven tube amp “quietly”, lol.

But if I can, I will! :D

Anyway, appreciate the insights. Cheers.

Etienne1973
KVRian
542 posts since 8 Feb, 2013 from Switzerland

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 1:34 am

Are you looking for a sound in a room experience?

If you only have closed mics impulse responses after the analogue loadbox then it's different.

If you mix stereo room mics IRs to them then you can achieve a similar result. Sure without the moving air sound pressure body experience but with a more 3D sound. Even in your headphones.

Vintage Tube Amp Cranked > Speaker Out > Loadbox > Digital Cabinet IRs

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Hermetech Mastering
KVRian
1135 posts since 30 May, 2003 from Paris

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 4:06 am

Depends what tone you like really. I find my AB763 (heavily modded Blackface Deluxe Reverb style) clone just perfect for recording clean tones at home. If I need grit I can crank the input and reduce the Master Volume, or it works great with pedals (I have a Germanium Fuzz Face and the Moog Drive). KM84 about a meter back from the grille (yes, I like a bit of room tone in there), into the Chandler TG2 pre, and I barely need to do any post processing.

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Hink
Rad Grandad
29578 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 12:19 pm

kvotchin wrote:
Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:19 pm
So, hoping to record electric guitar via an amp, but at home, without (generally speaking) the ability to go really loud.

Is there such a beast as a tube amp in particular (I prefer them), that can do nice clean and excellent drive . . . all at low to medium dB?

I realise that could be unlikely, great tube drive at low volume, but hey, this is why I’m asking - it might be possible?

TIA
frenzel tube pre amps with a two watt power tube, I own two (one is hi-gain with an extra 12ax7) and a frenzel superchamp. I lived in aprtments for over 30 years so I know you issue well///this worked well with a jet city isolation cab. The isolation cab though was not to keep me quiet but to keep outside noises from getting in

https://www.frenzeltubeamps.com/
Albert Einstein may have been a genius but his brother Frank was a monster

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The Noodlist
KVRian
1245 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from UK

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:16 pm

Bugera G5 Infinium looks feature packed and fairly priced, could also be used for rehearsals and small gigs. Adjustable output levels, FX loop, cab emulation.
Last edited by The Noodlist on Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral:

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Hink
Rad Grandad
29578 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:26 pm

wow that is a good price...but only one pre-amp tube? :shrug:
Albert Einstein may have been a genius but his brother Frank was a monster

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The Noodlist
KVRian
1245 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from UK

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:42 pm

Hink wrote:
Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:26 pm
wow that is a good price...but only one pre-amp tube? :shrug:
The next one up has more, and might be more of an investment, 20w.
Bugera G20 Infinium Head. Has less options for home recording.
Last edited by The Noodlist on Tue Oct 29, 2019 5:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral:

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donkey tugger
Boss Lovin' DR
6247 posts since 15 Mar, 2002 from the grimness of yorkshire

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:02 pm

The Noodlist wrote:
Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:16 pm
Bugera G5 Infinium
I'm sure it's very nice, but I could never have one, as in the back of my mind I'd always be worrying that I'd bought something with a name that's really pronounced as, 'buggerer'.

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The Noodlist
KVRian
1245 posts since 16 Aug, 2017 from UK

Re: Guitar amp for home recording

Post Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:32 pm

donkey tugger wrote:
Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:02 pm
I'm sure it's very nice, but I could never have one, as in the back of my mind I'd always be worrying that I'd bought something with a name that's really pronounced as, 'buggerer'.
Could always get a Messy Bogey.
Currently trying to turn noise into music. :neutral:

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