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Old 24th February 2012
Gear Maniac

Personally, I would go with plugins. That way with the modeling, you get all the convenience as well.

With modeling amps, I find that they sometimes sound pretty good in the room. Even with a tube power amp. But put a mic on front of them, and then you end up with weird artifacts.

So why compromise on the tone, when you are already having to do all the extra work of micing an amp (placement, room, volume, etc.).

With plugins or a dedicated preamp, you get all the convenience with about the same compromise in tone.

As for hardware vs. plugins. I prefer tracking with hardware (GSP1101, RP500, Behringer Bass V-Amp Pro) for low latency and convenience while tracking. But I always take a DI. I reamp through tube amps 60% of the time, then I would say 30% use plugins, the last 10% keep the tone from the hardware.

The latency with plugins really isn't bad with the right setup. I know there is a lot of debate. But my rig will go down to about 6ms. However, 4 guitar tracks later, drum processing, etc. It gets a little interesting. So I use the zero-latency mixer in my interface. Easier on the compy and the musicians prefer it.