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Best amp simulation software? Amp Sim & Guitar Effects Plugins
Old 11th March 2016
  #151
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There's a huge distinction not being made in the criteria with sims.

I'm not interested in wether or not it "Feels like i'm playing through a real amp".

All i care about is how it sounds in a mix. Depending on genre, alot of the time, the guitar sound that works best doesnt resemble a real amp. So.... Yeah....

Do you want to feel as though you're playing through a real amp??

OR do you want a good mix? I feel like these are two completely different worlds.
Old 11th March 2016
  #152
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I agree with that.

Now, what IS the best?

Old 11th March 2016
  #153
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ImNotDedyet's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by joecandy View Post
There's a huge distinction not being made in the criteria with sims.

I'm not interested in wether or not it "Feels like i'm playing through a real amp".

All i care about is how it sounds in a mix. Depending on genre, alot of the time, the guitar sound that works best doesnt resemble a real amp. So.... Yeah....

Do you want to feel as though you're playing through a real amp??

OR do you want a good mix? I feel like these are two completely different worlds.
I understand what you're saying, and I still say Scuffham's S-Gear, tone-wise for cleans is one of the best sounding out there. I had a smile I couldn't wipe off while demoing it.

But I do disagree with you on feel. You can squeeze a better performance out of something when playing through a great sounding chain vs just playing a DI'd signal.
Old 11th March 2016
  #154
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tkaitkai's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImNotDedyet View Post
You can squeeze a better performance out of something when playing through a great sounding chain vs just playing a DI'd signal.
Although I do agree that tone can absolutely impact performance, a competent guitar player will still be able to nail the part in lieu of a respectable tone. This is why reamping has become such a common practice — it allows for a wider array of tonal options and editing flexibility at the minor cost of unremarkable tones while tracking. Many guitarists have become hip to the benefits gleaned from reamping and are not bothered by the usage of subpar amp sim tones for recording purposes.

To me, the way an amp sim tone sits in a mix is more important than the way it feels to play through it. I'm starting to wonder if "feel" is more related to latency than it is to any deficiencies inherent in ITB tones. Since moving to an Apollo interface, I find that the best feeling amp sims are the UAD offerings, mostly because I can play through them at near-zero latency. As an example, I don't really like the UAD Softube Amp Room Half Stack tonally, but it definitely feels more convincing.

IME, even at very low buffer sizes (i.e. 32 or 64 ms) and high sample rates, something still "feels" off about native amp sims, despite the latency being virtually undetectable to my ears... maybe this is what others are experiencing? I could be totally wrong, of course.

All that said, I've found that most amp sims are simply not cut out for serious mixing purposes (heavy genres are a different discussion, of course). There are a few that work, however — various models in TH3 and Amplitube 4, UAD Marshall Silver Jubilee 2555, Ignite Emissary, and LePou LeXtac. Rosen Digital also makes some EXCELLENT impulse responses. Totally worth looking into if you haven't already.

Last edited by tkaitkai; 11th March 2016 at 11:15 AM..
Old 11th March 2016
  #155
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norbury brook's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ImNotDedyet View Post
I understand what you're saying, and I still say Scuffham's S-Gear, tone-wise for cleans is one of the best sounding out there. I had a smile I couldn't wipe off while demoing it.

But I do disagree with you on feel. You can squeeze a better performance out of something when playing through a great sounding chain vs just playing a DI'd signal.
Absolutely.

If there's ONE thing that ALL performers need to produce great records and that is to be happy with what they're hearing/feeling when performing.

Guitarists rely on the EXACT sound for the particular track. Why do you think guys take 4 amps and a huge pedal board into the studio when they can? So they can get 'the' sound that's required for the track.

Get that right, whatever that takes and you'll get the best from a performer.

Getting a great performance from everybody is my number 1 goal when producing a record.

I have an amazing array of boutique amps, mic's, cabs and I have tacks I've done with S-Gear that I would say no one but me would know they weren't the real thing.

I don't do high gain, I do clean, crunch, traditional blues, soul, country, rock , ambient sounds.



MC
Old 11th March 2016
  #156
pjk
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by joecandy View Post
There's a huge distinction not being made in the criteria with sims.

I'm not interested in wether or not it "Feels like i'm playing through a real amp".

All i care about is how it sounds in a mix. Depending on genre, alot of the time, the guitar sound that works best doesnt resemble a real amp. So.... Yeah....

Do you want to feel as though you're playing through a real amp??

OR do you want a good mix? I feel like these are two completely different worlds.
That's all that concerns me also, but as I'm sure you know, a good mix starts with the right fundamental frequencies ie a solid source. unless they get the frequency response right for the amp head sim then the IR's or real cabs are not going to sound as well as they could (hence the growing trend of reactive load boxes from tube amp heads ). It isn't going to work the best if it doesn't sound like a nice amp through a cab as IRs are just snap shot mic'ed cabs, just lacking low end thump, depth and have thinner highs. You are right though , you can make many things work in a busy mix but there are often times where just the guitar is playing and it still has to sound something like a mic'ed cab to have any semblance of realism. Most of them do now on higher gain but they don't sound as good as a real tube amp on low to mid gain mic'ed by someone who knows what they are doing without a lot of work. Many of the commercial sims still fail quite badly at that to me and that is a fundamental frequency problem. Despite not sounding 100 % authentic all of the time on low gain, the free amp sims have the most natural amp sound I have heard. Most of the commercial ones I have tried or own don't even have that part right yet although AT4 Mesa boogie mk III seemed good and I'm sure there are others I haven't tried.

Like I say the proof is in the pudding. when I realised there was something wrong with them I took them out of the computer and eliminated the IRs, as some IR's are close now to mic'ed cabs and sure enough the resonant frequencies and restricted, slightly off frequency response still shows up.

I am talking about getting it closer than what the free sims did from 2009 or so onwards......to me they haven't moved forward at all in the amp department.

Last edited by pjk; 13th March 2016 at 09:11 PM..
Old 11th March 2016
  #157
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pelacuas_dev's Avatar
 

Ampkit from Peavey, bad thing is that it just work as a stand alone but you can use soundflower to route the output to yor DAW

Amplitube 4 is really surprising me, great tones specially with high gain which was a weakness in previous versions.
Old 13th March 2016
  #158
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krevvy's Avatar
My top 3 in order
1. Kemper
2. Scuffham
3. amplitude 4
Old 7th April 2016
  #159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilDragon View Post
In this order:

Scuffham S-Gear 2
Kuassa
TSE
Ignite Audio
Mercuriall
LePou

Anything else just doesn't compare.
How close minded.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dino321 View Post
Overload TH3. I own Guitar Rig, Scuffman, Pod Farm, Revalver and Ampitube. TH3 is easily I my favorite.

Yup!! This thread is a little old but there is absolutely no doubt that TH3 is the king of them all now. Especially when you factor in what you get with the suite, and i was lucky enough to pick it up for $162.
Old 13th April 2016
  #160
I think it's rare you can just record and it sits in the mix. Even Kemper tones recorded may need further tweaking. Sitting in the mix is something determined when your whole session is done and you can't know up front what will work in the end.

That said, I've been able to get POD XT and 11R to sound great. Clear tones with the pod, distortion with 11R, but I had to have reference tracks and the 11R takes me about 2 hours of tweaking with an EQ to get it to sound "real" much less fit it into the mix.

With the Kemper, it sounds real out of the box, but there is still some fitting. With so many available sims today, you can get away with many companies simulations (i.e. UA's Softube's etc) but the Kemper has the capability of handling all you amp needs whereas some sims just don't work well in some situations.

Plus, each sim is it's own cost, where as once you have the Kemper you can just peruse a huge free library if you don't want to purchase commercial ones.

The "Sounds Real" vs "Mix's Well" are, in my mind, entirely separate. Sometimes you don't want your guitar to sound "real", you want it as an effect (i.e. opening of Map of the Problematique by Muse)
Old 13th April 2016
  #161
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkaitkai View Post
Although I do agree that tone can absolutely impact performance, a competent guitar player will still be able to nail the part in lieu of a respectable tone. This is why reamping has become such a common practice — it allows for a wider array of tonal options and editing flexibility at the minor cost of unremarkable tones while tracking. Many guitarists have become hip to the benefits gleaned from reamping and are not bothered by the usage of subpar amp sim tones for recording purposes.

To me, the way an amp sim tone sits in a mix is more important than the way it feels to play through it. I'm starting to wonder if "feel" is more related to latency than it is to any deficiencies inherent in ITB tones. Since moving to an Apollo interface, I find that the best feeling amp sims are the UAD offerings, mostly because I can play through them at near-zero latency. As an example, I don't really like the UAD Softube Amp Room Half Stack tonally, but it definitely feels more convincing.

IME, even at very low buffer sizes (i.e. 32 or 64 ms) and high sample rates, something still "feels" off about native amp sims, despite the latency being virtually undetectable to my ears... maybe this is what others are experiencing? I could be totally wrong, of course.

All that said, I've found that most amp sims are simply not cut out for serious mixing purposes (heavy genres are a different discussion, of course). There are a few that work, however — various models in TH3 and Amplitube 4, UAD Marshall Silver Jubilee 2555, Ignite Emissary, and LePou LeXtac. Rosen Digital also makes some EXCELLENT impulse responses. Totally worth looking into if you haven't already.
I agree with the latency vs comfort issue. For years I struggled with low buffers and dropouts until my wife bought me a Line 6 Pod 2. It's not state of the art in amp sims but I monitor the Pod real time through my hardware mixer while sending a separate raw file to disk for later amp sim processing and now I'm a happy camper! I also track the Pod at the same time in case it may also be usable.
Old 22nd April 2016
  #162
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How does the latency of these computer based effects (S-Gear, Guitar Rig, Waves, etc) compare to the hardware offerings (Axe FX, Helix, etc)? Lets assume a top class computer is used with the (Intel i7, plenty of RAM, SS hard drive).

Computer based latency would be a deal breaker if it was more than 10ms
Old 22nd April 2016
  #163
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sizzlewich View Post
How does the latency of these computer based effects (S-Gear, Guitar Rig, Waves, etc) compare to the hardware offerings (Axe FX, Helix, etc)? Lets assume a top class computer is used with the (Intel i7, plenty of RAM, SS hard drive).

Computer based latency would be a deal breaker if it was more than 10ms

It's not just the power of the computer. You'd need an interface with rock solid drivers that will perform with buffers set below 10 ms. There are a number on the market, RME being one of them.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #164
Today i have been beta testing software that is close to what Kemper does, and i can tell you its amazing, very clever, I took some samples from amps off of Youtube, it matched them perfectly. I even loaded up some famous songs in to it, and you can even snatch the sound from them as long as there are no drums and other stuff in that part of the the recording. Cant say much more other then , its coming soon.. )
I can see this being used to go back to an old recording, and matching the sound of a setup and adding to the mix if you wanted to. Its hard to match a sound without knowing the exact settings, but this will get you 99% there.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #165
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History of guitar amp sim software

Does anyone know the very first guitar amp simulator software? Need to find out for a research project at uni. As far as I'm aware they've been around since the early 2000's but no concrete info anywhere.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #166
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I've tried just about every amp simulation software out. Some are not bad. The new S Gear isn't bad, but I don't think they really capture the same sound as a guitar miked up through a good amp.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #167
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydanter View Post
Does anyone know the very first guitar amp simulator software? Need to find out for a research project at uni. As far as I'm aware they've been around since the early 2000's but no concrete info anywhere.
I think it may have been Amplitube. That's the first software I remember. Line 6 was the first with hardware amp simulation.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #168
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronsmith View Post
Today i have been beta testing software that is close to what Kemper does, and i can tell you its amazing, very clever, I took some samples from amps off of Youtube, it matched them perfectly. I even loaded up some famous songs in to it, and you can even snatch the sound from them as long as there are no drums and other stuff in that part of the the recording. Cant say much more other then , its coming soon.. )
I can see this being used to go back to an old recording, and matching the sound of a setup and adding to the mix if you wanted to. Its hard to match a sound without knowing the exact settings, but this will get you 99% there.
Is it like "profiling" or just some kind of match eq?What company?
Old 23rd April 2016
  #169
Jus
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Jus's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockinrob View Post
I think it may have been Amplitube. That's the first software I remember. Line 6 was the first with hardware amp simulation.
"Over ten years ago Line 6 introduced Amp Farm, the first widely used amp-modeling software. [...]

Unfortunately, Amp Farm was available only for Digidesign’s Pro Tools TDM system. But then IK Multimedia introduced AmpliTube"

Guitar Amp Modeling | Emusician
Old 23rd April 2016
  #170
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slicklickz View Post
Is it like "profiling" or just some kind of match eq?What company?
Yes it is, its actually an engine simulation, but for legal reasons that word you used wont be mentioned. The thing with this is you will be able to have much more control, like on a real amp sim, change the gain and eq etc.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #171
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydanter View Post
Does anyone know the very first guitar amp simulator software? Need to find out for a research project at uni. As far as I'm aware they've been around since the early 2000's but no concrete info anywhere.
almost 100% sure it was alienware revalver, i used it way back in the day, think it was 1999
Old 23rd April 2016
  #172
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydanter View Post
Does anyone know the very first guitar amp simulator software? Need to find out for a research project at uni. As far as I'm aware they've been around since the early 2000's but no concrete info anywhere.
The first software sim I was aware of was the Simulanalog Marshall stuff. I don't remember the year. 1999? The research papers on their site (simulanalog.org) are dated 1995 and 1998 for the design of the sim circuits.

The first hardware model I personally had was the old SGXExpress by Art. I bought that in 1996 or something.
Old 23rd April 2016
  #173
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronsmith View Post
Yes it is, its actually an engine simulation, but for legal reasons that word you used wont be mentioned. The thing with this is you will be able to have much more control, like on a real amp sim, change the gain and eq etc.
Doesn't Bias already do this?
Old 23rd April 2016
  #174
Quote:
Originally Posted by thenoodle View Post
The first software sim I was aware of was the Simulanalog Marshall stuff. I don't remember the year. 1999? The research papers on their site (simulanalog.org) are dated 1995 and 1998 for the design of the sim circuits.

The first hardware model I personally had was the old SGXExpress by Art. I bought that in 1996 or something.
yes you are right simulanalog goes way back also. i recall using it as well. the latency on my sound card back then though.. haha
Old 23rd April 2016
  #175
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rockinrob View Post
Line 6 was the first with hardware amp simulation.
I think Roland released the GP-100 in 1995. Line 6 didn't appear until 1996 and the first POD was 1998.
Old 24th April 2016
  #176
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Ok, ok, I was wrong on both counts. Sorry.
Old 24th April 2016
  #177
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydanter View Post
Does anyone know the very first guitar amp simulator software? Need to find out for a research project at uni. As far as I'm aware they've been around since the early 2000's but no concrete info anywhere.
Line6 ampfarm was a plug in for TDM in Pro Tools, and let you play without latency.
It was introduced in 1998 ...and was a game changer in the professional studios.

I would still use it until I retired my TDM rig a few years back.
Old 24th April 2016
  #178
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bestbeforetoday View Post
I think Roland released the GP-100 in 1995. Line 6 didn't appear until 1996 and the first POD was 1998.
I think we're talking about software only,not hardware with embedded code.
Old 24th April 2016
  #179
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slicklickz View Post
I think we're talking about software only,not hardware with embedded code.
You're right, the tread is about software. I was replying to a specific post that mentioned hardware, as you can see from the text I quoted. No intention to derail the discussion.
Old 24th April 2016
  #180
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronsmith View Post
Yes it is, its actually an engine simulation, but for legal reasons that word you used wont be mentioned. The thing with this is you will be able to have much more control, like on a real amp sim, change the gain and eq etc.
so how are we going to find about this whenever it's going to be released?
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