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Pros: Amp Sims During Tracking?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by bouldersound, Sep 20, 2011.

?

As a pro engineer I use software amp sims during tracking

Poll closed Oct 5, 2011.
  1. Exclusively

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Often

    2 vote(s)
    25.0%
  3. Sometimes

    1 vote(s)
    12.5%
  4. Ocaisionally

    1 vote(s)
    12.5%
  5. Never

    4 vote(s)
    50.0%
  1. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    I know it's common practice in home studios, but do pros do it? I never have and, as an engineer or as a player, I can't imagine it would be satisfactory. It forces you to use software monitoring, which means latency. Then it adds processing, which means even more latency.
     
  2. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    I agree that latency can be a problem, but that can be manageable with small enough buffers. The key goal here is to get an isolated signal suitable for reamping while giving the guitar player a reasonably good picture of his/her playing. I don't do this any more since I have an extension speaker in another room.
     
  3. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    Can you get it below 10ms? That would be in the range of acoustic delay from using an amp. Much more than that seems like it would lead to sloppy sounding performances.
     
  4. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    No.
    It can. Some guitarist react badly to it. Some have no problems. It's not something you can rely on.
     
  5. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    An alternative - rather than using a plugin amp sim - is to use an outboard unit (e.g. a POD). Plug the guitar into a DI, send the direct signal to the DAW and the amp out to the POD. Then record the POD as well - monitoring with zero latency. I actually do essentially this all the time when recording my own bass playing. But like the POD sim as well as my recorded amp so the DI is almost always discarded.
     
  6. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    That's how I would handle it if I couldn't use an actual amp and DI. But mostly I just shoot for getting the right tone from the start. I try to keep guitar playing and tone together as a unit.
     
  7. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    I have an Eleven Rack. Yes there is latency even with PT9, but only when you use it as a digital device. I find I'm much happier patching it just like an outboard preamp. No latency and all the variety of settings at my disposal. I also use it as a simple rack mount effects box through an amp. The basic sounds I'm getting as well as the FEEL and the RESPONSE with the guitar is outstanding. I have several songs where there are no amps and I'll bet you cant tell one way or the other at the mix. One thing it does NOT have is noise. Imagine a Tweed Deluxe on ten and quiet as it can be........imagine......I can.
     
  8. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    That takes it out of the software amp sim category and into the "get the tone before going in" category. So we're on the same page there.
     
  9. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

    I use a tech 21 sans amp hardware unit on bass all the time. makes the record alot. check phase on 'actual amp/DI combo'. That can kill a great performance's sound faster than a little latency.
     
  10. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    I would use only the mic for the monitor mix. In post I would slide the mic to match the DI. But I don't generally use a DI or reamp.

    I normally use two mics and slide the far mic to match, so the direct path to the mics is lined up and it's just the reflected paths in the far mic, which are low enough to not cause cancellation, that are not in phase.
     
  11. JohnTodd

    JohnTodd Well-Known Member

    I always run the guitar into my guitar amp first, pre-amp only, with it set to the most neutral settings I can manage, then DI to the computer. I find it helps with the dynamic response of Amplitube - sounds more realistic to me when I do this, as opposed to the "Instrument In preamp" found on my FP10. Doesn't really change the tone, just changes the "reaction" of the guitar.

    That said, I always record the clean, boring, generic signal so I can tweak Amplitube later.

    If I am recording a fast solo, I almost always need that distortion to help me out. In that case I split the guitar signal. DRY goes to the recorder and the other side to a real amp I use to monitor while tracking.

    PS. I'm not a pro, just a knucklehead.
     
  12. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    Ooh, I misspelled "occasionally".
     

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