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Logic Amp sims vs Brand X
Old 31st August 2019
  #31
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Jay Asher's Avatar
 

I am not a guitarist but a friend of mine is a very good one and he says that the new 1K Multimedias Fender amp sims are the best he has ever tried.

https://www.ikmultimedia.com/product...itube-fender-2
Old 2nd September 2019
  #32
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MusiKLover's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sascha Franck View Post
Apart from some clean to slightly chunky tones (which you can for example get from the Tweed amps), which I find to be useful, IMO the Logic amps just suck. Once you're into overdriven territory, the already mentioned over-compression gets very noticeable in form of excessive noise and almost zero dynamics (and yes, I do have a decent input path, in fact more than just one...).
Do yourself a favour and check out the free Ignite Amps. Make sure to set things up right - some are preamps only, but they offer a separate poweramp plugin, plus, they need a cab sim loaded behind. I'm using Space Designer and a bunch of quality IRs for the latter. Unfortunately, there's no Vox to be found in that suite and the clean sounds aren't exactly Fender-ish, either, but you may find some goodies, though. IMO, the single best Fender-rendition is coming from S-Gear and Amplitube apparentlxy has some pretty great Vox tones (can't tell myself, I hate pretty much everything Vox).
Disagree. I put the Amps through the Ultimate Plugin Test of Andy's (Cytomic) and many, if not most or all, of the Amps do not have noise and register quite well. They seemed to have been decently modeled.
Old 2nd September 2019
  #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MusiKLover View Post
Disagree. I put the Amps through the Ultimate Plugin Test of Andy's (Cytomic) and many, if not most or all, of the Amps do not have noise and register quite well. They seemed to have been decently modeled.
Where do I find that test?
Old 3rd September 2019
  #34
Decently modeled compared to what though? I mean I have an 82 JCM800 with its matching 4x12 sitting right here, and no 800 sim can hold a candle to it before or after its recorded (I still haven't seen one that has the option for the stock power tubes that came in the US models like mine either so theres that). They are missing something I cannot exactly describe in the feel and sound that, if you've played one of the good ones will know right away. Dont get me wrong, theyre great tools, especially when you've got a riff to write at 2am and dont want to piss off your significant other micing up said Marshall that late. A good digital preamp and a rad power amp through a cabinet is one thing but strictly ITB? Every single time Ive used them and thought I might leave them in a track, they just cant hang after I put em next to my Marshall, Bassman, Laney or Vox with even just a 'cheap' old 57. Every amp sim is missing this substantial weight in the midrange, that even a scooped Mesa Triple Rec has, that makes the world of difference between sounding like a grinding 100w steamroller, and a piece of ripping cardboard. There is way more than just how the tube distorts the signal at whatever conditions they modeled going on that nobody has gotten.

Note: Have not tried any of these IR things with Sound Diver yet.. Too broke at the moment, but I wanna try the Celestions now. I can pretend I have a cabinet of Creambacks now!
Old 3rd September 2019
  #35
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MusiKLover's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sascha Franck View Post
Where do I find that test?
Lets do it: The Ultimate Plugin Analysis Thread

Keep in mind that anything below 120dbfs is not relevant to human hearing. Andy, in his earlier years, even said 100 give or take. To give an idea, that's precisely the level Tony Klanghelm targets, that is 100-120dbfs. As you might know, and it is my other Digital Audio Workstation, Andy does development for Ableton Live. His IP includes the Glue Compressor and the Filters, among other things such as EQ-8, which he claims FabFilter "further commercialized," but I digress.

Rgarding AmpDesigner/Pedalboard, if you are a purist, then you could easily utilize a high-pass filter, though the
DC-Offset/Rumble is below 120dbfs in almost all cases.

For more recent information, and note there are some heavy hitters participating, here's a technically oriented page later in the thread: Lets do it: The Ultimate Plugin Analysis Thread

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Old 3rd September 2019
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Monotremata View Post
Decently modeled compared to what though? I mean I have an 82 JCM800 with its matching 4x12 sitting right here, and no 800 sim can hold a candle to it before or after its recorded (I still haven't seen one that has the option for the stock power tubes that came in the US models like mine either so theres that). They are missing something I cannot exactly describe in the feel and sound that, if you've played one of the good ones will know right away. Dont get me wrong, theyre great tools, especially when you've got a riff to write at 2am and dont want to piss off your significant other micing up said Marshall that late. A good digital preamp and a rad power amp through a cabinet is one thing but strictly ITB? Every single time Ive used them and thought I might leave them in a track, they just cant hang after I put em next to my Marshall, Bassman, Laney or Vox with even just a 'cheap' old 57. Every amp sim is missing this substantial weight in the midrange, that even a scooped Mesa Triple Rec has, that makes the world of difference between sounding like a grinding 100w steamroller, and a piece of ripping cardboard. There is way more than just how the tube distorts the signal at whatever conditions they modeled going on that nobody has gotten.
Serious question: Did you ever play a decent modeler through a 4x12 cab?

Thing is, most modelers are listened to through whatever kind of fullrange system. So it's the mimicking the situation of listening to your mic'ed up amp through, say, studio monitors. And out of my experience, I can say that listening to whatever quality amp (owned a whole bunch of them over the years) through such a setup pretty often is a pretty dissapointing experience. Well, perhaps not exactly "dissapointing", but very, very different to listening straight to the thing in person, blasting away next to you in the same room.
Yet, these tones work perfectly well in recordings.
Whatever, in any case you need to make it a fair comparison - which many people don't seem to do.

Anyway, in case you have done these fair comparisons, you may as well have missed some options on the modeler side of things. You're saying you haven't fooled around with IRs yet - that very technology IMO is a true game changer. The difference between most "oldschool" cab simulations (which aren't much else but EQs, sometimes with a little bit special curves) and real cabs/mics captured by IRs is like night and day, really. Even certain oldschool modelers which you would usually through straight into the trash can sound at least decent once you run them through a proper IR instead of using the cab sims they're coming with.
Regarding the final sound, I would even say that the cab/mic portion is making up for at least 50% of its overall impression, probably more.

Now, that still doesn't make the amps themselves feel better under your fingertips. They may even sound fine in a production but just feel awkward when you're playing them. I'd call that the "POD syndrome". Even up to these days you can get rather decent final tones out of a first/second generation POD - in case you dial in a new sound for each part. What you can completely forget about with (at least earlier) PODs is using one sound and doing the rest through playing dynamics and the guitar controls. For a recorded riff that is supposed to always sound the same this might even be an advance in some cases, but it defenitely makes up for a horrible playing feel, especially in case you're used to the real deal.
IMO this is what a lot of modelers (Logics Amp Designer most defenitely included, and I could even prove that, regardless of whatever "ultimate plugin shootouts" that have been mentioned - which I had a look at by now, fwiw) still fall short at.

In addition, very, very often, the input signal chain is messing with things, especially on the dynamic side of things.
Yes, by now we do have Hi-Z inputs on just about each and every interface, yet, they're often not calibrated properly. Heck, even RMEs high impedance inputs featured an input impedance of something around 350 kOhm whereas the typical input impedance of most guitar amps is 1 mOhm. The differences between those can be drastic, especially once it comes to playing dynamics. In case you've ever used a traditional fuzz box (Dallas Arbiter Fuzz or even a Big Muff) with active PUs or a buffer in front, you will already know about that. With traditional passive PUs they will sound great, with active elements in front of them what you'll get very often is utter garbage.
IMO, passive guitar PUs put out one of the most delicate signals we might be dealing with. Now, most often, this can be adressed. In case you don't run into an old, traditional fuzz box, using a dedicated guitar buffer box can be the ticket already (I'm still using my old Whammy II for that, which has an excellent buffer). A bypassed guitar pedal with an active bypass (aka non "true bypass"), such as all Boss pedals, might be the ticket as well.
These are serious issues that one might run into when dealing with amp sims and it's pretty easy to mess the sound up right at the input stage already.

I also noticed that plenty of amp simps don't seem to be calibrated right for an "ideally" recorded signal. In digital recording land, we all learned that a signal using as much of the dynamic range as possible is a good signal. Hence, you dial in you input gain so the recording is coming as close to 0dB as possible. Alternatively, in these days of 24bit recordings, you may as well leave plenty of safety headroom. Whatever you do, amp sims may expect something else. Which is why experimenting with additional gain plugins in front of an amp sim may as well be a good idea.

Anyway, there's really some kickass amp sims out there these days, especially in hardware land. The top tiers being Kemper and Axe FX, closely followed by Line 6 Helix, Atomic Amplifire, Boss GT-1000 and Headrush. For certain sounds, these are indistiguishably close to the real deal. Heck, Mark Knopfler is now using a Kemper instead of his luxurious amp palette live. Metallica (not that I'd care, but still) are using Axe FX's live. These aren't exactly acts that couldn't afford the real deal for their live stuff.

And obviously, plugins are getting closer, too. IMO S-Gear is as good as it gets for clean and certain traditionally overdriven sounds, Amplitube seems to have some excellent Vox stuff (can't tell exactly, I hate Vox-like amps myself, even if I dig some players using them), Helix Native, while possibly requiring some tweaking, is an incredibly versatile and great sounding sim as well. Etc.
Given a decent input chain and good IRs, these are capably of guitar sounds that even demanding guitar tone hunters probably wouldn't be able to distinguish from the real deal.

However, Logics Amp Designer is nowhere even close to that ballpark. I guess I could even set up a comparison, demonstrating how it lacks of dynamics and introduces more noise than most others.
Old 3rd September 2019
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MusiKLover View Post
That test is *completely* irrelevant when it comes to amp modeling.
You just don't run an amp sim through a frequency analyzer and call it a day - the issues aren't about aliasing, either. See my last post. No offense meant, but you seem to be entirely missing the point when it comes to amp sims.
Old 3rd September 2019
  #38
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MusiKLover's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sascha Franck View Post
That test is *completely* irrelevant when it comes to amp modeling.
You just don't run an amp sim through a frequency analyzer and call it a day - the issues aren't about aliasing, either. See my last post. No offense meant, but you seem to be entirely missing the point when it comes to amp sims.
You're missing the point regarding THD, Harmonic Distortion, and IMD. Perhaps it is over your head. You must have a big picture mind to grasp the concepts. The Amps are decently modeled, even given subjective feedback. They may not be the best in the commercial world, but such phrases as "those were the days" and "back when I engineered a project" do not play a role. Data does. Period. I provided what some would say an exorbitant amount a few Posts ago. As they say, shut up or put up--thus provide your own objective refutations, else do not comment.
Old 3rd September 2019
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MusiKLover View Post
else do not comment.
I comment as much as I wish to - and not as much as you wish to. Period. And when it comes to amp sims, providing screenshots of frequency analyzers is as pointless as it gets.
Old 3rd September 2019
  #40
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And fwiw, I will happily provide some sound samples later today.
Old 4th September 2019
  #41
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I'm relatively inexperienced in recording but have a lot of experience recording in pro studios as an artist. Thought I'd share some differing opinions. To my ears, the Logic amps are pretty good. Better than the couple of 3rd party amp sims I've tried, and I don't feel the need to try more. My recording mentor who is a Tape-Op-interviewed level of expert also uses them exclusively over real amps if he's recording himself.

I have never attempted to play metal, but I could see the Logic amps not being good for that. I do mostly post-punk and jangle pop, so maybe it's better suited for those styles.

I've found playing real pedals seems to make the most difference to me. The Logic pedals suck... maybe?

Also my own weird finding but the pick choice seems to make a difference when recording into fake amps, much more so than when playing real amps. Maybe that has to do with the lack of dynamics that were discussed earlier. Using a lighter pick always seems to help. When recording bass, I use a fairly guitar pick. Also the person playing makes a huge difference. Almost sounds like the amp has changed just by having two different people play the same part.

A good recording buddy of mine always duplicates the lead vocal and runs the duplicate track through Logic guitar amps! His vocal mixes always sound really good to me.

I accidentally ran a real drum machine through a Logic guitar amp and it sounded awesome!!! Definitely gonna do that some more.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #42
Gear Nut
 

This demo seems to encapsulate the issues

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-mJTM3rjRs

The cleans sound almost identical to me. Like the VST sounds really really good.


But.... overdriven and far distortion sounds are just terrible on the VST.

Now.... maybe if he messed with the tone a little bit instead of keeping them identical he could make the vst sound better. But...... unlikely....


I ended up getting the Friyette powerstation and... while it cost as much as my amp.... its a really powerful device that lets me record it at normal volume with almost zero difference in "feel" or tone. Its overkill depending on your situation but it seems perfect for me so far.
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