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How can I add some analog / tube / saturation / warm goodness to my signal chain?

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  • How can I add some analog / tube / saturation / warm goodness to my signal chain?

    Hello,



    How can I add some analog / tube / saturation / warm goodness to my signal chain?



    Here's my signal chain :



    Guitar > Apogee Duet 2 In > Guitar Rig 5 (with GTR Ground for midi controller) > Apogee Duet 2 Balance Out > Emotiv Airmotiv 6 monitors ( http://emotivapro.com/products/power.../airmotiv6.php )



    It doesn't seem to make sense to put a tube preamp between guitar & interface so should I consider between interface out and my monitors? Should it be a preamp or a poweramp? I don't know the difference?



    Thanks!

  • #2
    Is this just for playing, or do you want to get a particular sound while recording? If the latter, which recording software are you using?
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    • #3
      Just for playing. I use Logic 9 with the intention of migrating to Ableton later down the line. The creative well has been dry for a while so I haven't been recording much lately. Instead of using my amp for jams, I would use the outs on my Duet 2 and go into a mixer with the rest of the guys & their Pod HDs.

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      • #4
        Get a good guitar amplifier and throw away everything else. And when you want to record, put a mic on the amplifier and plug it into the Duet.
        --
        "Today's production equipment is IT-based and cannot be operated without a passing knowledge of computing, although it seems that it can be operated without a passing knowledge of audio." - John Watkinson, Resolution Magazine, October 2006
        Drop by http://mikeriversaudio.wordpress.com now and then

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        • #5






          Quote Originally Posted by CB3874
          View Post

          Hello,



          How can I add some analog / tube / saturation / warm goodness to my signal chain?




          Why, the answer is to use something digital!



          I guess you can use tape saturation plugins and tube emulation plugins and stuff like that, or get something in the front end that creates harmonic distortion if you must imitate analog instead of, well, using analog, tubes, and tape saturation.



          Which way do you think works best?
          Ken Lee on 500px / Ken's Photo Store / Ken Lee Photography Facebook Website / Blueberry Buddha Studios / Ajanta Palace Houseboat - Kashmir / Hotel Green View - Kashmir / Eleven Shadows website / Ken Lee Photography Blog / Akai 12-track tape transfers / MY NEW ALBUM! The Mercury Seven

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          • #6
            I bought myself a Pod HD400 the other day, and was pleasantly surprised by it. That whole "woolly blanket thrown over the speaker" aesthetic you get with the older sims can be programmed right out of it. Instead, you get a "lets simulate annoying ringing microphone resonance" section. So you can use it to make a sound all but indistinguishable from a crappy, old-fashioned mic and tube-amp recording.



            I think it's going to be my favourite tool for adding a bit of dirt and grime to a guitar recording. Because I still favor external boxes for generating guitar noises. When I use an external amp-sim, I can directly monitor the output, so I don't have to worry about latency in the computer.

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            • #7
              I hurt my back recently and sitting in the studio has been real painful so I set up

              another DAW next to my recliner in the living room.



              For clean driven guitar I been plugging into a Boss compressor> stere echo unit

              and recording straight into the DAW. For leads I swap out a marshall Governer pedal

              into the echo unit.



              I didnt expect much. I was just writing songs with a drum machine, bass and adding vocals.

              I cooked up about a dozen songs and took them into the studio to do my final mixing and

              the results were very good. A few needed to have the lead cranked up a little so I used

              a guitar drive plugin like Voxengo Boogex. Rythum needed some space so I used some chorus and reverb

              plugins.



              I'd say the only thing I wasnt real pleased with were the vocals. I was recording through a behringer mixer

              and headphones so dialing up a good tone wasnt very easy. I normally use my recording monitors for tracking

              and dial my sound up live.



              As far as the guitar tones, the sound quality was good but limited to what the pedals could do.

              The sound is as good as any miced amp or tube preamp I have. I prefer to use my rack units with speaker

              emulation for recording direct. I have unlimited tones and effects with those including tube preamp so using

              this simple pedal method isnt going to replace those better options, but they are effective.

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              • #8






                Quote Originally Posted by CB3874
                View Post

                Hello,



                How can I add some analog / tube / saturation / warm goodness to my signal chain?



                Here's my signal chain :



                Guitar > Apogee Duet 2 In > Guitar Rig 5 (with GTR Ground for midi controller) > Apogee Duet 2 Balance Out > Emotiv Airmotiv 6 monitors ( http://emotivapro.com/products/power.../airmotiv6.php )



                It doesn't seem to make sense to put a tube preamp between guitar & interface so should I consider between interface out and my monitors? Should it be a preamp or a poweramp? I don't know the difference?



                Thanks!




                I use Guitar Rig 5 quite bit now myself. I really like hitting it with an excellent analog pedal first. Not to add distortion per se, but for the cool things it does to the transient that don't seem to happen quite right yet in software. So, as much as I really like Guitar Rig 5, playing first through my old Boss CS-2, the old one with 3 knobs, set with minimal compression, it just seems to hit the sim perfectly. Another pedal that works is the Fulltone OCD set to a cleanish setting. That seems to massage the transients just right too.



                For me, great pedals going in make all the difference.
                __________
                Ain't no sacrilege to call Elvis king
                Dad is great and all but he never could sing -
                Jesus

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                • #9
                  One of the simplest ways to make amp sims sound better is simply to roll off some highs. Guitar cabs don't have a lot of high frequency response.



                  When mastering, sometimes I add a high-cut filter that kicks in around 15kHz. When people here the mastered version, they usually ask if I used an analog signal chain



                  De-essing before guitar sims, and dipping response at 2kHz, can also give a much more organic sound. I've actually kind of specialized in wrestling with amp sims until they sound good, including coming up with a proprietary process for conditioning the guitar signal on the way in to the sim.



                  Sometimes I think "tube goodness" is overrated. With guitar amps, it's the elements that surround the tube - the power amp, input stage, power supply sag, cabinet, guitar cord, etc. - that give the magic.
                  CHECK IT OUT: Lilianna!, my latest song, is now streamable from YouTube.

                  Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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                  • #10
                    I do like electric guitar -- it's my instrument of choice, after all. But sometimes I hate how crude and ugly it sounds. Especially when I'm trying to get a good live sound at a gig (where I can't rely on plugins).

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                    • #11






                      Quote Originally Posted by Kotch
                      View Post

                      I do like electric guitar -- it's my instrument of choice, after all. But sometimes I hate how crude and ugly it sounds. Especially when I'm trying to get a good live sound at a gig (where I can't rely on plugins).




                      Wow.



                      I love how beautiful guitar sounds, especially through my amp. It's when I have to rely on plugins that I sometimes hate how crude and ugly it sounds.
                      Ken Lee on 500px / Ken's Photo Store / Ken Lee Photography Facebook Website / Blueberry Buddha Studios / Ajanta Palace Houseboat - Kashmir / Hotel Green View - Kashmir / Eleven Shadows website / Ken Lee Photography Blog / Akai 12-track tape transfers / MY NEW ALBUM! The Mercury Seven

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                      • #12
                        Honestly my goal this weekend is to actually try my Yamaha THR10 through my computer. It's a cool little practice thingy, but I'm intrigued about the two channel wet-dry you can record off it -- I want to pursue how well it my work in my home-studio (it's fall/winter, and for me it's time to get back into recording.).



                        I'm still using guitar rig 4 -- though I think NI is having a sale on now with their audio interface and you get Rig5 for free or something... (I have to go back to my email to check).

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                        • #13
                          Get some hardware. Out of all the tube pres available I still like the PAIA Tube Head Model 9305.... either the rackmount version or the tabletop version. They're both identical on the inside. Only catch is its a kit you have to build or find one on eBay or musicgoround.com that's already assembled. I've built three of the PAIA kits... one rackmount 9305 and two model 9407 mic pres. I love these things!
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