Originally Posted by Hellraizer
Yea thats why I was thinking about using the line out from a hotplate because I would get the power amp section too right? I guess I would still need a speaker simulator too? i may look into this palmer device.
The Palmer isn't cheap, but it's one of the best I've heard. Satriani's been using one almost exclusively since "Engines of Creation."
That said, I personally think "Engines" was the only album he's done with the Palmer where the guitar tone doesn't sound like shit (compared to his non-Palmer tone, anyway), and I think the only reason it works as well as it does there is because it's an electronica album and the slightly fizzier "direct" sound sounds more appropriate in the mixes because so much of it isn't really intended to sound like a guitar, anyway. It's almost funny - I absolutely hated the production on Strange Beautiful Music, but by "Is there Love in Space" on a few tracks it sounded like he was getting the hang of the thing... until I read an interview mentioning he'd used a Peavey XXX cab on most of the tracks I could stand the tone of.
Ditto with Super Collossal, I had a pretty good idea which tracks were mic'd amp (for instance, the lead break on "A Cool New Way") and which were direct before I read interviews confirming this.
I mean, in a pinch a speaker simulator is way better than nothing, but I'd rather mic up an attenuated amp that isn't running as hard as it could to keep it at an apartment-sane level than run a speaker simulator from a line out, given the choice.
For recording heavy guitars, I stickied an old thread were I linked an awesome article - it's a pretty intense read, but both entertaining and seriously worth the time.