A day with Ownhammer

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by scrmnglspl, Feb 5, 2012.

  1. scrmnglspl

    scrmnglspl Member

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    My great friend Shawn (goes by zerok00l on here) and I had the pleasure of visiting Kevin, Mr. Ownhammer himself, this past weekend. Kevin showed Shawn and I wonderful hospitality and was gracious enough to demonstrate some of his more advanced products as well as help us with some side by side comparisons of our Xitone cabs versus the real thing.

    First Kevin demonstrated his new plugin with Nebula Pro. Kevin showed how you can use the Tone, X - Z axis, Aux and fat controls he has worked into this plugin to fine tune guitar tracks in a mix. Since I have recently got my first DAW setup and have begun dabbling in home recording I find this very exciting. I plan on getting the Nebula plug in to do this for future recording. Anyone reading this doing tracking home, should definitely look into this. Very versatile.

    Next we set up the Bogner cab that was used for the OH Bogner libraries side by side with a Xitone X24 and a Xitone X7 FRFR solution. We found that the OH Ir that best represented the live in the room sound of the Bogner cab was the SM57 - 1. From there we cycled through lots of the Bogner IRs including my favorite, the Mix and Match 8 Fat 1.

    We found that the Xitones had a significantly better coverage than the source cab. You can move around quite a bit and get the same feeling of a "sweet spot" position on a real cab. As well, we found that you can fire the Xitone directly at your face and get the feeling of standing just a little off axis of a cab (the place I feel is the sweet spot - who really ever plays a show with a 412 firing right at their face?).

    Next we performed this same test with the source cab for the new OH Mesa V32 cab. This was a little nostalgic for me. My first really great cabinet was this exact cabinet. I found it very satisfying to hear this cabinet in person again. More importantly, I found Kevin's IRs from this cabinet EXTREMELY representative of the source material. I have seen some posts where the OH libraries have been accused of being overly bright. I can state with confidence that this is not the case. The brightest IR in the library was very representative of the cab in the room sound (I believe we were using SM57 position 1 to test this as well). I suspect that those who are accusing the OH product of being overly bright are not objectively comparing it to similar source material. I have found that if you use a lower quality "FRFR" solution (in my case a Peavey PVM115 with a very aggressive horn, that I had before my Xitone) that one could perceive the OH product as overly bright, but it's simply not the case. In my opinion, the Ownhammer IRs aren't overly bright, they're extremely accurate.

    That being said, having had the opportunity to audition the real cabs again with the single speaker FRFR format of the Xitones, I can say that I will likely never go back to a separate driver FRFR solution again. It would have to be pretty darn awesome, and at this point I'm very excited about the Xitone products (if you haven't had the opportunity to try them, you really should. Drop Mick a line, he's a super cool guy and will work with you.)

    After that, I offered up a certain KT88 tube power amp that I have the privilege of possessing for Kevin to capture and our day was done. I had a great time visiting Kevin and learned a ton (not the least of which, the flattest response setting of the previously mentioned KT88 power amp, which wasn't far from my usual setting). A big thanks to Kevin, keep the products coming!
     
  2. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

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  3. CyberFerret

    CyberFerret Member

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    Great mini-review...and quite edifying too... :aok
     
  4. mtmartin71

    mtmartin71 Silver Supporting Member

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    Good stuff. Just so I'm clear, you felt the SM57 - 1 position represented the best? I too use the Mix-N-Match 8 (regular, not fat). I'll have to compare those two now. Thanks!
     
  5. Yek

    Yek Member

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    For me, MnM 8 worked fine through a close-by FR monitor, mimicking a real cab. But I quit using it after hearing the tone through the FOH PA. Not "present" enough. I prefer SM57 1-2, and also the stock ones (without mic simul.).
     
  6. mtmartin71

    mtmartin71 Silver Supporting Member

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    Interesting...I think this is how i feel. I tried the SM57 1 position and it was too sizzly for me. I much prefer playing to the sound of MnM 8. Kind of sucks. What cuts live is not pleasing to my ear. But...I guess I could send one cab to my monitor and one cab to FOH...if I really want to get in the weeds.
     
  7. scrmnglspl

    scrmnglspl Member

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    Yes, the SM57 position 1 was the closest representation of actual cab. We AB'd back and forth several times. I think most of us who use FRFR have forgotten exactly what a 412 cab sound like when it's actually "in the room". If you've ever played a show with a Bogner cab, where your sound was being monitored through a wedge at the front, then what you are used to hearing from that monitor is an SM57 close mic'd (and more than likely you're probably hearing some sort of stock EQ that the sound man isn't telling you that he is adding to your guitar sound because he believes that you do not know what you're doing).

    After having experienced this sort of comparison, I kind of wonder if what we want to hear is REALLY an accurate representation of the source cab or more of an idealized version of it (read: those of us that love MnM8 or other blended cab IRs).

    Either way, Ownhammer makes a great product and Kevin is a super cool guy.
     

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