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Tired of guitar sims. Is Tech 21 the answer? Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 9th September 2011
  #31
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ionian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikymike View Post
A little OT, but you might want to change one of the words in your sig, you know, being German and all.
Funny, since based on the context of his signature I never interpreted it as anything except nuclear holocaust. Then again I did come of age during the 80s where nuclear holocaust was a word thrown around daily.


Very strange you felt the need to make a post like that... I'd give you a facepalm, but I'm probably correct in assuming that facepalm at the end of your post is for yourself, knowing how awkward and out of place your post really is.

Anyway, I'm done questioning the hall monitor. Back to the thread, everyone.

Frank
Old 9th September 2011
  #32
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mikymike's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ionian View Post
Funny, since based on the context of his signature I never interpreted it as anything except nuclear holocaust. Then again I did come of age during the 80s where nuclear holocaust was a word thrown around daily.


Very strange you felt the need to make a post like that... I'd give you a facepalm, but I'm probably correct in assuming that facepalm at the end of your post is for yourself, knowing how awkward and out of place your post really is.

Anyway, I'm done questioning the hall monitor. Back to the thread, everyone.

Frank
Fair enough, could have dropped the face palm I guess, but a guy from Germany using the word "holacaust" in that context? He didnt say "nuclear holacaust". A little insensitive dont you think? Anyway, I'm done questioning the hall monitor monitor.
Old 9th September 2011
  #33
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Hotstuff's Avatar
 

Sansamp Tech21 hardware or software for BASS all the time, it is realy good for bass! Any style of music!
Guitars? no thanks! Line 6 amp farm!

Carlos Rocha
Old 7th February 2013
  #34
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I've been using Tech21 Sansamp TriAC for almost 10 years, both live and for recording purposes, and it never let me down.
I've been recording a record lately, and did almost all guitar parts with it (all kind of guitars in a rock-country-blues type of sound): well, the results are way better than I expected.

Another way I got good soundswas micing the amp, but not using its overdrive: the drive came from a stompbox with the gain I wanted, but with volume reduced. The overall sound pressure was high enough to hit the microphone with its share of moving air, but not annoying for other people in the house.

L.
Old 7th February 2013
  #35
Old 7th February 2013
  #36
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I have gotten a lot out of the tech 21 character series, as well as the sansamp bass stuff. I have never had any luck with software amp sims. I prefer a good tube amp recorded with nice gear, but that isn't in the budget, so perhaps try a Tech 21 California.
Good luck!
Old 9th March 2016
  #37
Here for the gear
I've been a very happy tech 21 guitar user since 2001. It sounds like your ears/taste are very similar to mine. I've owned a lot of digital modelers (hardware and VST) during that same time and noticed the persistent "fizz" factor and artificial sound. I've always stuck with the Tech 21 gear because of their organic, dynamic feel that they have which I have yet to hear equaled in a digital modeler (though they've gotten close over time). I believe this is because it's analog emulation via FET's rather than digital emulation.

I use a PSA-1 rack preamp (live/rehearsal) and GT-2 (home practice/direct recording). As a preamp for a signal that is getting routed to a real power amp and speakers (I use Mosvalve 962, IMO the best for emulators) they are the best thing I've ever owned or used. I combine that with a digitech 2112 effects unit (also have used G-major) and this setup gives me a very similar cabaility of effects and amp emulations as you'd find in an Axe FX... and I've been doing it for years.

There is, however, one area where the Tech 21 stuff is lacking IMO: Cab sim for direct. They sound great direct on clean or very slightly dirty settings, but when you start to saturate the gain they have a very fizzy character(I've only noticed this direct). It's a more "organic" type of fizz than a modeler, but it still sounds harsh and has to be heavily eq'd to be usable. My tech 21 gear is older gen, and I've heard that the cab sim on the fly rigs and character pedals are better, but watching youtube demos of this gear leads me to believe the problem is still there.

There's an easy fix though. I add cab IR's to my direct tracks, and for live (if I need to go direct) I use a Logidy Epsi C (cab IR loader pedal).

Regarding the earlier complaint that the tech21 stuff gets lost in the mix with the band... that's not my experience, but I'm powering mine with a very good, loud and warm power amp (the mosvalve). If you were powering it with a sterile type of solid state power amp like what is built into the trademark amps, then I can see that happening for sure.
Old 9th March 2016
  #38
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I just added a Tech 21 "Leeds" pedal to my Bass rig pedalboard.
Last in the chain, serving as the overall tone-shaper / preamp.

Holy moly! Total home run, it sounds fantastic!

I also love that pedal for "silent" direct guitar recording. Very convincing and "mixable".

But yeah, through a P.A. or clean amp in a live setting..? Not so much.
Old 9th March 2016
  #39
A good option would be the Two Notes Torpedo Reload. You get to keep your tube amp and play at bedroom levels while still soaking your tubes properly! Then just use the Wall of Sound plug-in for cab simulation. Also get the DI & reamping features.

I've never been satisfied with the Tech 21 guitar products. I do however love the RPM for bass!
Old 10th March 2016
  #40
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by swmorgan77 View Post
... I've owned a lot of digital modelers (hardware and VST) during that same time and noticed the persistent "fizz" factor and artificial sound. I've always stuck with the Tech 21 gear because of their organic, dynamic feel that they have which I have yet to hear equaled in a digital modeler (though they've gotten close over time). I believe this is because it's analog emulation via FET's rather than digital emulation.

...


There is, however, one area where the Tech 21 stuff is lacking IMO: Cab sim for direct. They sound great direct on clean or very slightly dirty settings, but when you start to saturate the gain they have a very fizzy character(I've only noticed this direct). It's a more "organic" type of fizz than a modeler, but it still sounds harsh and has to be heavily eq'd to be usable. My tech 21 gear is older gen, and I've heard that the cab sim on the fly rigs and character pedals are better, but watching youtube demos of this gear leads me to believe the problem is still there.

There's an easy fix though. I add cab IR's to my direct tracks, and for live (if I need to go direct) I use a Logidy Epsi C (cab IR loader pedal).

Regarding the earlier complaint that the tech21 stuff gets lost in the mix with the band... that's not my experience, but I'm powering mine with a very good, loud and warm power amp (the mosvalve). If you were powering it with a sterile type of solid state power amp like what is built into the trademark amps, then I can see that happening for sure.
I agree 100% with all of this. I see my earlier comments on this subject back in 2011, and my opinion is still the same.

I've since added the Leeds - that's a fantastic new flavour.

I think you have to use analog for what it does best, and digital for what it does best. I still don't really appreciate digital distortion, although they are improving all the time. But a Sansamp isn't *really* attempting to provide cab emulation. Just a HPF so it doesn't sound too nasty. That's where digital convolution is your next best thing, if you can't drive a real cab to adequate volumes. (And if you can do that, you may as well just have a tube amp ...).
Old 10th March 2016
  #41
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Amp sims are a bit like looking at a picture of the Grand Canyon instead of going to the Grand Canyon.
Tech21 is like being at the Grand Canyon but you forgot your eyeglasses at home.

Tech21 wins of feel and dynamic response, but it'll never sound like a real 12" speaking moving air in a proper cab, because the speaker sim is purely EQ. It always ends up being a bit nasal and fake IMHO.

However, run that SansAmp through a Impulse Response (IR) based cab simulator (either a hardware device from Two-notes or a plugin) and you can achieve amazing things. You could also take the line output from a tube amp (FX Send works) and run that through sad IR-based cab sim. The ultimate is to run an actual tube amp full on into Two-Notes' Torpedo Live, which is a reactive speaker load with IR cab sim built-in. You can have all the dynamic feel of a real amp, preamp AND power amp, with amazing cabinet simulation, at any volume. But that's more cash.
Old 10th March 2016
  #42
Registered User
If the Sansamp pedals were simply called 100% analog FET transistor guitar preamps, there would be less confusion about what they actually are and what they can't do. Coupled with a power amp and real cab, there *are* a real guitar amp. As valid as any solid state amp and remarkably tube-like.

They actually work as a simple convenient direct to PA amp replacer - but to get serious tone out of them you do need a serious cabinet replacer.
Old 10th March 2016
  #43
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I don't agree with naysayers that digital can't work or can't work well in a mix with other instruments.

Last time I recorded guitar was Blackstar ht head and the venue series cabinet, and a solid state Roland head / cab, used combinations of tube mics / sm57 /7b. Got some killer, thick tones. Slight compression when needed with hardware compression.

3 or 4 of the songs I recorded half to all of the guitar late at night direct from podhd to a nice DI, same ext. pedals, same chain as going into amp head/cab. They were supposed to be placeholder tracks just to get the inspiration out. I took the DI guitar, EQd it, added a bit of ambience to breath life into it, added a bit of color to the tracks.. just initially to get a good rough mix as i recorded. Don't get me wrong - the are processed, 2 sometimes 3 different plug in eqs on them mixed in with saturation and some maximizer, slight compression on some. Every I.R. or cab Sim I use sounds thin and terrible and makes the tone sound worse so I've just kept a bit of finely dialed in reverb.

I printed all the tracks when I moved to a new daw later that month before the songs got polished mixes and I cannot for the life of me tell them apart.. and doesn't matter tbh. I ended up keeping them.

They don't sound the same by any means but with multiple guitar parts, several different guitars used , multiple cabs in each song, layered guitars, varying mics meticulously positioned on the cabs... they all sound like a different flavor of awesome and add something to the mix.
Old 10th March 2016
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnickSound View Post
Amp sims are a bit like looking at a picture of the Grand Canyon instead of going to the Grand Canyon.
Tech21 is like being at the Grand Canyon but you forgot your eyeglasses at home.

Tech21 wins of feel and dynamic response, but it'll never sound like a real 12" speaking moving air in a proper cab, because the speaker sim is purely EQ. It always ends up being a bit nasal and fake IMHO...
I couldn't agree more. I like amp sims for the convenience factor. It's nice to be able to wake up in the middle of the night and record ideas without having to crank up my amps. But that's where it stops for me. To me, the sims still lack the magic of a real amp. Depth, width, 3D, harmonics, pushing air, whatever you want to call it, the Sims just haven't progressed far enough for me to dump my amps. I have tried all the usual suspects including Axe FX and Kemper. No thank you.
Old 10th March 2016
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alrod View Post
I couldn't agree more. I like amp sims for the convenience factor. It's nice to be able to wake up in the middle of the night and record ideas without having to crank up my amps. But that's where it stops for me. To me, the sims still lack the magic of a real amp. Depth, width, 3D, harmonics, pushing air, whatever you want to call it, the Sims just haven't progressed far enough for me to dump my amps. I have tried all the usual suspects including Axe FX and Kemper. No thank you.
I'm with you on not making it 'the solution'. I can't say I'll ever discard my amps and I love nothing more than to get use out of all my mics.. I also think if they don't sound 3d enough or good enough, you aren't done with them yet. Either need to fix it on the front end and re-record, or mold them in post to.

I feel like most who give it a shot give up way too soon and just count off digital as bad.


A few times I've re-amped the guitar out to a tiny vintage danelectro amp and recorded that to have something to mix in with parallel, both for color and the 'air'. It was a neat effect when mixed in.
Old 10th March 2016
  #46
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Originally Posted by nmrecording View Post
I'm with you on not making it 'the solution'. I can't say I'll ever discard my amps and I love nothing more than to get use out of all my mics.. I also think if they don't sound 3d enough or good enough, you aren't done with them yet. Either need to fix it on the front end and re-record, or mold them in post to.

I feel like most who give it a shot give up way too soon and just count off digital as bad.


A few times I've re-amped the guitar out to a tiny vintage danelectro amp and recorded that to have something to mix in with parallel, both for color and the 'air'. It was a neat effect when mixed in.
When i refer to "3D", I mean the core sound. Of course I can make a sim sound 3D with effects. To me sims without effects sound horrible. The effects make them somewhat usable. Once sims can get the core sound of a tube amp, I will be all over that.

Give me at least a little credit. I have tried on and off for years to shape and mold sims to sound like a real amp. I have come to the conclusion that amps sims are just amp sims. Good for what they are, but that are not tube amps so lets not pretend that they are. You cant fit a square peg into a round hole.

Don't you think many of us would like to stop carrying 100+ pound amps around and not have to replace tubes, speakers etc.? I hope that day will come, but for me... it hasn't come yet.
Old 10th March 2016
  #47
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As others have said, nothing compares to micing an actual amp. But given a $250 budget a sansamp is your best bet. Having a cab sim still helps. So something like gt2 pedal into an h&k red box.
Old 10th March 2016
  #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyc View Post
As others have said, nothing compares to micing an actual amp.
That's not true, the Kemper is as good as a well microphoned amp and can be even better with all its features (save, recall, fx, not having to change tubes, being able to move it right after turning it off etc etc etc)
Old 10th March 2016
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlosguardia View Post
That's not true, the Kemper is as good as a well microphoned amp and can be even better with all its features (save, recall, fx, not having to change tubes, being able to move it right after turning it off etc etc etc)
No doubt it is convenient. But I have yet to hear one that doesn't sound overly compressed, there is a lack of dynamics compared to a real amp.
Old 11th March 2016
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyc View Post
As others have said, nothing compares to micing an actual amp. But given a $250 budget a sansamp is your best bet. Having a cab sim still helps. So something like gt2 pedal into an h&k red box.
To be honest, the GT2 is one of a few Sansamp pedals I have sold ... I really love the newer Character pedals, but they are voiced specifically so it's an expensive option if you want lots of flavours. Being analog, I think there are too many compromises trying to get wildly different amp models out of one box. It's not like digital where it just loads a new software algo. Even the Original Sansamp with the dipswitches - I think there are only just so many things you can switch in an analog circuit. To model amps that have 1 tube or 12 tubes, and totally different EQ methods etc .... the Character ones really go places the others can't reach.

The cab sims in the pedals (switchable OFF in the newer ones) are just HPF filters, and the H&K Red box is just the same ... so no advantage.

Have a look at the Epsi - for real digital convolution of IR's taken from real amps. If you can run a real amp at full volume, this is your best bet. Or just use software if recording - track the Sansamp for what it does best.
Old 11th March 2016
  #51
I have used many guitar sims but always seem to get burned out on the sound and they don't sit we'll in a mix. I also tried the load box and iso cab route. Still have them but don't use them. I have a Sansamp PSA-1.1 that I like and use all the time for heavy guitar and Bass sounds. I also have several 1w and 5w amps that cover everything else. I think a good 1w for clean sounds and a flavor of sansamp could work for you.
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