Amp Simulators for Virtual Guitars

Zoot_Rollo

Throbbing Member
Slightly related question -

Can you recommend any good youtube videos or reading (or your own wisdom) about what is considered a "good distortion tone" especially in the context of guitars, pedals, and high gain amps? I mean of course I can use my own ears and mix referencing, but sometimes I feel surprised when guitarists say "that tone is crap" when I thought it's OK, and I can't really discern what's not likeable about it.

here's a great HARDWARE rundown - should give you an idea for heavy toAnZ


all achievable in software
 

Zoot_Rollo

Throbbing Member
I'm not sure if I'd trust guitarists' opinion of guitar tone completely. They often like it to sound nice by itself, so nice that it takes up the full frequency spectrum and doesn't need the rest of the band. Not saying they're wrong, but take that stuff with a grain of salt, and compare it to the opinions of producers. "That tone is crap" might mean "I can still hear the snare and cymbals", heh.

completely agree.

watch Eddie Kramer stepping through Electric Ladyland tracks.

some of the guitars solo'd sounds weak and uninspiring - but with full mix!

good god - Hendrix was studio masterful by the time that album came around.

and 26.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
I have a bass-tone related question and figured here's a good place to ask it. Please listen to the file that I uploaded first (and listen especially for the bass), and then read the text in the spoiler tag.

The first quarter is a VI bass, just for reference, the rest uses an 8 string guitar in drop-E as a "fake bass". The last quarter shows that fake bass exposed, the part in the middle is guitars, bass and a simple drum loop in context, without any mastering. I'm currently only interested in the question whether a real drop-E guitar posing as a base for black metal would be an improvement over a sampled virtual bass, given that it's going to play very monotonous lines and burried deep in the mix anyway.
If this is B(l)assphemy, I'm ready to accept my scolding, but I'm not quite sure I'm ready to buy a real bass yet.
 

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Eldhrimnir

New Member
If anyone wants to try to replicate that Mgla guitar tone, the "messiah_3.wav" IR is from an IR pack with 4 impulses that I bought years ago. It was called "Messiah Impulse Pack" and I'm not sure it's available anywhere anymore. Just use something else that has a full enough frequency spectrum and compensate with the match-eq. Except for the IR, EQ and Reverb every other plugin is free. I've used SPAN to compare the frequency spectrum and if you don't have a match EQ you could try to shape the sound with lots of bands on e.g. ReaEQ in Reaper. I'm mainly just mentioning this in case anyone finds this via google because it's possibly now the only place on the web where getting the Mgla guitar sound with (mostly) free vst plugins is discussed. Hope it helps someone get started.


p.s.: In the mp3 the riff plays only once, it's the original at the beginning and fades quickly into my version after the first ~1.5 seconds.
[/QUOTE]

Cool. Exercises in Futility is one of the greatest albums to come out in the last 15 years. My 2 cents would be to keep it rather simple and go with TSE X50 and/or Fortin Nameless, in conjunction with a tube screamer or similar. Those are the two of the best ITB high gain amps to this date IMO. If you can run the old (and free) TSE X30 (which is only 32 bit), I would try that too...in some regards, esp tremolo picking like in your example, it really shines. But remember that the cab IR is half of the sound.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
Cool. Exercises in Futility is one of the greatest albums to come out in the last 15 years. My 2 cents would be to keep it rather simple and go with TSE X50 and/or Fortin Nameless, in conjunction with a tube screamer or similar. Those are the two of the best ITB high gain amps to this date IMO. If you can run the old (and free) TSE X30 (which is only 32 bit), I would try that too...in some regards, esp tremolo picking like in your example, it really shines. But remember that the cab IR is half of the sound.
Thanks for the recommendation! I'm glad to hear that because I bought x50 in the black friday sale :).

The last tone I tried to clone was this one. I might post some questions about it along with an example of how far I've gotten after I put a couple more hours into it. This is the reftrack that I picked (the youtube channel is well worth checking out if anyone likes this kind of stuff, imho the guy is really good):


But I'll return to my black metal template eventually and will post an update here too. I think the next iteration should feature performed guitars since ultimately I want to play the parts in myself.
 

MartinH.

Senior Member
Cool. Exercises in Futility is one of the greatest albums to come out in the last 15 years. My 2 cents would be to keep it rather simple and go with TSE X50 and/or Fortin Nameless, in conjunction with a tube screamer or similar. Those are the two of the best ITB high gain amps to this date IMO. If you can run the old (and free) TSE X30 (which is only 32 bit), I would try that too...in some regards, esp tremolo picking like in your example, it really shines. But remember that the cab IR is half of the sound.
I spent another couple of hours down that rabbithole and this is where I'm currently at. It starts with the original and switches back and forth between my mockup (which still is mostly VI based, with the exception of the rythm guitar that only plays powerchords because the VI doesn't have enough round robins to sell that).

Let me know what you think!
 

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Tim_Wells

Tim Wells
I'm not sure if I'd trust guitarists' opinion of guitar tone completely. They often like it to sound nice by itself, so nice that it takes up the full frequency spectrum and doesn't need the rest of the band. Not saying they're wrong, but take that stuff with a grain of salt, and compare it to the opinions of producers. "That tone is crap" might mean "I can still hear the snare and cymbals", heh.
Yeah, that's an excellent point. As a guitar-centric musician I'm sure I'm guilty of what you describe. Guitars are so adept at dominating huge chunks of the frequency spectrum. During the past 50 years, how many small bands and solo musicians have earned their bread and butter with guitars as their primary tool?