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Cab Enhancer can be used to either emulate a cabinet without the use of IR, enhance an existing IR cabinet, or enhance a mic'd cabinet. IR cabs can lose some of the "live" feel no matter what equipment or how you place a mic, it will always be like that it is a simple matter of physics. So, what Cab Enhancer does is place back some of that live 'feel', so to speak.
To illustrate how the CabShaper will help out, consider the example of a snare drum. When you hit a snare drum hard or soft the sound of that snare drum changes with the velocity of the strike. These tonal changes occur with speakers too, albeit to a lesser degree. So, it is these tonal/resonant changes that are missing from an IR file. Use of AcmeBarGig's EAR (Enhanced Audio Resonance) technology attempts to put them back in.
This loss, on the other hand, does not occur when you are recording with mic'd amps. EAR reads how hard or soft you are playing and resonates certain frequencies based on speaker type. Unfortunately, AcmeBarGig are still defining speaker sizes with it, but in future versions of EAR you will be able to select your speaker type and size from a list. So for this version, AcmeBarGig recommends that you simply turn the dials until you like the sound.
For mic'd cabs, you can use a small amount of EAR to enhance the punchiness, but using too much of it in this scenario will not help. What Cab Enhancer does in this regard is allow you access to an extra equalizer, 2 filters, and a widener - so it doesn't perform any type of "magic" but does contain the tools required to better craft your sound, including a noise gate. One of the filters can also be used as a hiss eliminator, and then you could use the EQ to boost the high end that was removed from the filter.
When used as a Cab Emulator, it is almost identical to the previous version of CabShaper, as seen in DIG and BIG but with enhanced low end rumble. The EAR and Filters can also be used with this as you would when using Cab Enhancer with an Impulse Response file.