Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

VST, AU, etc. plug-in Virtual Effects discussion
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nideto
KVRer
10 posts since 22 Aug, 2019

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:07 pm

Hi,

I tried few amp simulators, hard to decide ! It's a no for Guitar Rig and Bias but I'm okay with Amplitube even if i don't like the marketing target. S-Gear looks nice but i don't know if it's the right choice for my musical tastes and my workflow.

Nick Cave, Placebo, Sonic Youth... that's the kind of non clean sounds i want to approach. Most of the time, amp sim demos are about clean, blues, classic rock, funk and metal. Alternative stuff is a bit neglected. I stopped electric guitar a long time ago, my playing was more about metal (trash, power, speed, glam), and now i'm back to kick asses but for playing alternative/gothic rock, pop/jazzy/funk hybrid stuff, ambient and old school standards.
For non clean stuff, i am focusing on alternative rock. My playing is not well educated to that and my ears are accustomed to boosted marshall sound (JCM800) with palmute, powerchords, solo... So it's harder to decide about the right amp simulator with the keyword alternative in mind.

About sound, to be concrete, it's all about crunchy arpeggios and dirty chords. I got in my mind the guitar sound of "Without You I'm Nothing" song from the eponym album of Placebo, "Do You Love Me Part 2" and "Loverman" (chorus around 50s) from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds "Let Love In" record - something less compressed and mixed for Nick Cave stuff. I can add "I had a dream, Joe" too, similar to "Loverman", past the intro, around 20s, and what can do Eric Haugen on youtube with diminished triads : "How to Use Diminished Triads for a Creepy, Nick Cave Effect: Guitar Lesson" if you want to check this out.
Finally, it would be a sim able to go into Sonic Youth sound territory though i think it's more about effects than amp.

Clean Fender (reverb amps) or Roland JC-120 with pedals and marshall amps (JCM9000, 6100, that kind of gear ?) should do the job, with a Fender Mustang, Jaquar or Jazzmaster in front ! Fender amp sim from Amplitube come to my mind and i don't know about JC-120 and Marshall amp. Amplitube 4 (non free) come with few marshall amp that looks interesting.
In some ways, S-Gear is more attractive to me : less amp (less choice paralysis), more tweeking option (i am not a preset guy), looks like to sounds better, price... but no pedal effect before amp included and i don't know if it's ok for the kind of stuff i described - what do you think about The Stealer amp ?
It's for playing live in my bedroom, with Ableton live (session loops), hardware and software synths, with drum samples. If i go toward S-gear, i don't know if it would do the job in live condition (CPU, latence) cause i would need other plugins to simulate pedals effects - with Amplitube, pedals are include in the VST, it should be more CPU friendly, no ?

I should test TH-U and LePou marshall plugin too, but i am a bit lost. I know what kind of sound i want but not sure about my abilty to get the right sound, i need advices.

Any answers, suggestions would be really appreciated, thanks ;)

User avatar
borisky
KVRer
3 posts since 12 Apr, 2015

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 1:57 pm

Hi nideto,

well as a big fan of Sonic Youth, Nick Cave and many other alternative rock bands my go-to amp sim is Bias. I know you said it wasn't for you but I find it's really lively and feels a bit scary (in a good way) whereas many of the other sims I have or have tried feel a bit dead and meh...just not exciting to me. I never use presets either, I just call up one of the half a dozen Fenders or Marshalls and start tweaking. Btw, I'm still using Bias Amp 1.

Having said that, recently I've had my eye on the Neural DSP Plini sim. It's not cheap but from what I can tell from the YouTube vids it's got some real life to it. I'm gonna have to give the demo a go I think.

Anyhow, I hope this helps,

Regards

rollasoc
KVRian
551 posts since 13 Jun, 2003 from Shrewsbury, UK

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:05 pm

Weirdly I use Amplitude for effects and S-gear for amp. So I would say both. But then I sometimes use Bias or Guitar Rig for effects... So all of them.

Also take a look at the demos on youtube for the Kuassa amps, I have been using them a bit more recently. Also the three Waves PRS amps are rather nice too.....
Band: http://www.hairthieves.com
Solo Instrumentals : https://sineglidermusic.bandcamp.com/
New Hairthieves EP - EP 11 out November 29th 2019 https://thehairthieves.bandcamp.com/album/ep11
SO OUT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

User avatar
donkey tugger
Boss Lovin' DR
6563 posts since 15 Mar, 2002 from the grimness of yorkshire

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:14 pm

Welll....to dissent a bit..

Beyond a certain point I'd say it's not really as important as people make out in terms of amp sims, in that it's what you play and the way you do it that creates the sound - any of the modern ones will do it, with a suitable 'axe'. Use lots of drone/open strings/chords in higher voicings, and play with attitude over precision - give it some! Hollowbody guitars are also popular in a lot of indie stuff along with yer Jags/teles etc. For Sonic Yoof style stuff you're also looking at using a lot of alternate tunings to get that droney sound.

User avatar
vurt
addled muppet weed
58781 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 2:17 pm

and spoons.

Funkybot's Evil Twin
KVRAF
6887 posts since 16 Aug, 2006

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 3:13 pm

I really liked Neural DSP Plini. Covers a wide range of rock tones and sounds good throughout. I’d rather have 3 really, really good amps than a mixed bag of stuff, and Plini is the former IMO. If I were buying an amp sim today, that’s the one I go for.

spoontechnique
KVRist
190 posts since 7 May, 2018

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 6:15 pm

I haven't fully explored Amplitube, but here's my initial take. The defaults and presets suck, but that's a given with most amp sims. The stompboxes are good and varied. The Amplitube amps are not great but the third-party ones are. The cab sim is powerful but again, the defaults are weak. It's much better than I thought, but I do think something like Neural DSP or any of the newer, smaller companies (the boutique ones working closely with musicians) would do better.

ifinallysignedup
KVRer
3 posts since 31 Aug, 2019

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 8:56 pm

Funkybot speaks the truth!
I haven't contributed much to this forum other than my praise for Neural DSPs Plini.
Plini is my go-to. I use it for anything clean to mid-high gain and I'm liking Overlouds' TH-U "Carved Vai" for higher gain.

I use both AXPs "Softdrive" and Cytomics' "The Scream" in front of my amp sims
for two differing levels of boost/character
Using a boost in front of your amp sim of choice may assist in finding that sound that you're after ?

User avatar
dimitar
KVRAF
2056 posts since 13 Dec, 2003 from Bulgaria

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Tue Jan 14, 2020 9:16 pm

Hi nideto,
Check out these tones that I've produced.
I will check today some tracks by Placebo
Best regards and Happy New Year!
Dimi
:)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3pmTxiuUSU
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-j-qE-67yE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqTsAnapeY0
Product Specialist for Kuassa http://www.nalbantov.com
http://www.kuassa.com

Kinh
KVRian
1297 posts since 26 Aug, 2012

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:44 am

shit, whyz dont ya just gets a good amp, mic and send Z DI + mic'd amp in and press record.

The Main Event
KVRist
86 posts since 20 Jul, 2012

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:53 am

Kinh wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:44 am
shit, whyz dont ya just gets a good amp, mic and send Z DI + mic'd amp in and press record.
Because he wants to get a proper result, i guess.

0w0
KVRer
1 posts since 31 Jul, 2019

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 3:44 am

S-Gear as amp sim is a lot better to me.

User avatar
telecode
KVRAF
1544 posts since 24 Mar, 2015 from Toronto, Canada

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 4:22 am

I use S-Gear and Amplitube and Guitar Rig. NDSP Plini* is on my to get list but haven't used it yet.

S-Gear sounds the best but I can only manage to wrangle commercial sounding rock sounds out of it. Amplitube I find better for bluesy sounds. I will mix and match effects with other stuff. I also experimented with using the built in amp sim's in the DAW . Don't forget to look at those. Sometimes you get better results with them in some cases.

I have found that even with newer gen Amp Sims, I am still going back to Guitar Rig to get the weirdo sounds I need as the other Sims I feel are more all geared towards "dad rock". To get more non traditional( and to my ears moderish sounds) ,I use a the split and crossover tools and mix different sims in GR. i either double them and dedicate one for the low end and one for the high end frequencies. or i mix two different ones and dedicate one for one particular modulation or effect and the other for another. e.g. one group handles the overarching phaser part of the sound and the other the delay sound. then usually put compressor or reverb on the master.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fvXWspIsLM

* from the little I have seen of Plini, I am getting the impression it's going to be system performance heavy. how it will tax the system resources with having multiple tracks of it is yet to be seen.

rollasoc
KVRian
551 posts since 13 Jun, 2003 from Shrewsbury, UK

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:40 am

Kinh wrote:
Wed Jan 15, 2020 2:44 am
shit, whyz dont ya just gets a good amp, mic and send Z DI + mic'd amp in and press record.
I do, into either my 50W Laney amp or my 5W tube amp, through either a pedal board or my M13. I also record onto 4-track cassette, via an old Behringer V-amp, but didn't think any of those points was relevant to the question asked.
Band: http://www.hairthieves.com
Solo Instrumentals : https://sineglidermusic.bandcamp.com/
New Hairthieves EP - EP 11 out November 29th 2019 https://thehairthieves.bandcamp.com/album/ep11
SO OUT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

SLiC
KVRAF
4417 posts since 2 Dec, 2004 from North Wales

Re: Amp sim for alternative rock... S-Gear or Amplitube ?

Post Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:09 am

I also have/use most of the above mentioned by 9 times out of 10 I use Line 6 Helix Native which has it all pretty much covered and IMHO the best FX. Always go in to a whatever simulator you use with a (valve) preamp and the results will always be a lot better - a bit of analog boost and natural compression before the signal gets converted.
i7 Win 10 PC+ Surface, BWS V3, StudioOne 4, Cubase 10, Live 9 suite, X32 Desk. , DM12, Odyssey, P8, Virus TI, 500hp Eurorack, Elektron A4, RYTM, Heat, Digitone, Deluge, OP-Z, Mother+DFAM, Drums, Guitars, Basses and Amps

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