Pick the real amp...

Discussion in 'Recording Studio' started by Erockomania, Aug 8, 2016.

  1. Erockomania

    Erockomania Studio Geek

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    Hey folks, there has been some debate in a thread or two over the past few weeks (Fractal Forum) about how close the Axe was to the real thing and a "sonic imprint" that seems to carry across various models. I thought I'd do my best to see just how far the AXE has come by putting up 4 of my favorite amp models up against a real tube amp (which was run into a River Rock Crusher and then into an Ownhammer IR in the CABLAB plugin).

    [SC]https://soundcloud.com/eric-hill1/pick-the-real-amp[/SC]

    As I have no axe to grind here (proving the axe itself has a tone or proving amps sound "better"... I use every method in the studio with fine results), I gave each amp mix treatment to get things to sit the way I like (this means a touch of EQ where necessary and level matched the parts by ear). All patches have different IRs, some have drive blocks/pedals and some have a little deep editing while others have very little. I wasn't trying to coax out the "sonic imprint" but rather getting tones I'm pretty happy with (although these tones would likely change in a different context). Some of these clearly work better than others in this tune but I tried my best to cover a decent amount of ground in three separate riffs. The bass is exactly the same on all 5. It is not EQ'd to each set. Each amp has been reamped with the same exact DI. I thought it was pretty interesting so I thought I'd share here too :)

    --------please don't mind the sloppy playing, lol------


    Gear:
    Skervesen Nebelung with BKP Juggs
    Dingwall Combustion (into AXE patch)
    Superior Drummer 2
     
    hoffmaniv likes this.
  2. hoffmaniv

    hoffmaniv Basement Dweller

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    Cool demo of each amp! I'm inclined to think #3 is the real deal. Something about it seemed ... more organic.

    Otherwise, as a fellow Axe FX user I can't care enough to split hairs. I love the sounds that I'm starting to get as well as how helpful the community has also been in my search for heavier, but more controlled sounds. Every time I learn something about parameter such-and-such and feature this-or-that, I end up going right back to square one to make things better. And more often than not, they end up sounding way better!
     
  3. Drezik27

    Drezik27 SS.org Regular

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    I agree, I'm going 3.
     
  4. prlgmnr

    prlgmnr ...that kind of idea

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    Is it #1?
     
  5. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I'm going to guess #4.

    There's definitely a point to be made about how close models are getting to the real thing (unless this was a trick and they're all models). I'd wonder how much the differences are covered up by using impulses on the real amp, as well as whatever other processing you might have done to fit the mix. I would imagine there'd be a much bigger difference if we were comparing an entirely digital chain with a Head+Cab+Mic setup. If I were to take anything away from this example, it's that all the sounds are..... kinda the same? Are they different models of the same amp? Are they supposed to be modelling different amps? I mean, I've owned amp heads that sounded pretty drastically different from eachother, but all these models sound roughly the same to me.

    I'd like to see a comparison like this but with a much lower gain sound. Sure, modellers have nailed the modern-metal-with-all-the-gain sound, but what about squeaky clean sounds, or just light crunch? I feel like it would be easier to tell the sounds apart in those cases- not that it would sound bad per-se, but maybe different.
     
  6. Raswa

    Raswa SS.org Regular

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    Im going on a wild card here and pick the first one just cuz the resonance between the higher notes have more harmonics, but honestly man, i can't tell which one i like the best, they all sound great to me :D
     
  7. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

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    It seems almost pointless to guess as I changed my mind 3 times within a minute and still have no idea. Think I'd stick with 3 though but I really couldn't tell you why. I'm a firm believer that the Axe is 110% capable and those who say otherwise haven't compared the right things (e.g. forgetting that a miced recorded amp is way different to sitting infront of a loud cab).

    Great sounds overall :)
     
  8. Erockomania

    Erockomania Studio Geek

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    Agreed! I've already fooled my friends who simply refused to believe the AxeFX sounded like a real recorded amp. haha!

    and thanks!
     
  9. PBGas

    PBGas SS.org Regular

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    It would be a lucky guess to tell. People have done this many times over. If it sits well in the mix, it doesn't matter. Not even the audience will notice.

    The real difference for some folks is the feel you get when playing live with a real amp vs. a modeller. Some have no issue, others, like myself, aren't as comfortable with it.

    If I was a touring pro, I'd be all over the simplicity of having a modeller and keeping your travelling weight, consistency, and setup time down. I do like the Bias stuff with some external IRs from WOS-III.
     
  10. zenshin

    zenshin SS.org Regular

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    I intentionally didn't allow myself to listen for too long on each sample because I know my brain would start conjuring up some sort of cognitive dissonance to say "this is the amp!". If I can't tell immediately then it shouldn't matter.

    That being said, I couldn't tell the difference. Not to mention, I can't tell the difference even when playing anymore. Throw on some good IRs (Rosen Digital especially) and I feel no difference at volume from my tube rig or any other tube rig I play.
     
  11. Erockomania

    Erockomania Studio Geek

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    Should I let more people guess or do you guys want the key? :)
     
  12. Promit

    Promit SS.org Regular

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    I feel like it's #3 or #4, I'll throw my chips in on 4 just for fun. 5 is my least favorite regardless.
     
  13. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I say wait until a day or more has passed with no new guesses, then post the answer, but hide it with that colouring thing people do for movie spoilers and stuff like that- in case anyone else wants to play along.
     
  14. Erockomania

    Erockomania Studio Geek

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    what is this coloring voodoo you speak of
     
  15. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I dunno how they do it. Maybe it's just setting the foreground and background color of text to the same thing? Or maybe there's a tag for it?

    Just found it- there's a [ spoiler ] tag.

    Something like this:
    This is a spoiler!

    Edit:
    [banana]Turns out there's lots of tags I didn't know about.[/banana]
     
  16. Erockomania

    Erockomania Studio Geek

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    That is sweet!
     
  17. PhilT

    PhilT SS.org Regular

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    I would say it's either 1 or 4, but since it is my favourite I'm gonna go with #1
     
  18. Slampop

    Slampop Artist/Producer: IDOLER

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    Its either 4 or 5. My guess is 5. i liked 1 and 3 the most :metal:
     
  19. MaxSwagger

    MaxSwagger SS.org Regular

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    I dig em all but #1 is my fav nice and wet but I dig the more organic nature of a couple of these others too. Anyways I'm gonna with #4 as the real amp. Also, killer riffs man really enjoyed that.
     
  20. Slampop

    Slampop Artist/Producer: IDOLER

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    ^+1 :shred:
     

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