Amp head > Loadbox > Audio Interface doubt

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by KenA, Mar 6, 2015.

  1. KenA

    KenA Member

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    Hi. In order to be able to record an amp (amp head in this example) without a mic, but direct into a DAW I believe I need to do something like this: Amp head > Loadbox > Audio Interface > DAW

    I was checking the Palmer Junction PDI09 loadbox but the diagram shows also a connection to a guitar cabinet. Is the cab used just for monitoring? eg, do I really need to go through the cab?

    I also understand that some loadboxes come with built in Speaker Sims an some also include Pre and Power amp sims. I just want a loadbox because I'll use Recabinet as the speaker sim. So the only doubt I have is if I really need a cabinet along with the loadbox?

    Can you guys also point me to other loadboxes. Mesa Boogie has the CabClone but it has Speaker Sim built in, not sure if I can bypass it?

    ps. Will I need an Atenuator as well? I believe I can crank the amp head and control de overall volume via Audio Interface, right?

    Thanks in advance, Ken
     
  2. sysexguy

    sysexguy Member

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    There are many choices that can offer a uncompensated out to DAW while properly loading your amp. My business is involved in selling Torpedo Reload which is an excellent solution with tons of flexibility but is not the least cost solution available.

    In the case of the Mesa you mention, I believe the unbalanced output (1/4") can be selected to be dry. A similar dry output can be obtained easily from products from Palmer, Badcat, Suhr, Rivera amongst others.

    With a loadbox, the signal is attenuated 100% and no physical speaker is connected to the amp. Many units allow a thru speaker connection which then allows 100% of the amp sound to go to the speaker while providing a line level tap to feed a speaker simulator. A few of the units can allow a line level feed to a DAW while having an independent volume control (attenuation) for the connected guitar speaker for monitoring including the Reload, Rivera and Badcat.

    In a studio environment, this is not necessary however sometimes it can be a way to get around the DAW's latency while tracking, add a physically mic'd track and have some coupling (feedback effects) between guitar and speaker.

    I hope that this overview is helpful, I am trying to be as apolitical as possible given my relationship to Torpedo :banana

    Andy
     
  3. randombastage

    randombastage Member

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    Some direct boxes need the speaker plugged into the amp, some will not attenuate some will but still require the speaker connected so be careful what you chose.

    I have the Fryette Power Station and it attenuates and provides a line out as well as a load and few other functions. I send that signal into the Two Notes Torpedo CAB for speaker sims, it is excellent.

    Look at this for a good option of no speaker attached, line out: http://www.suhr.com/amplifiers-for-electric-guitars/Reactive-Load/
     
  4. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    I believe you can bypass it using the 1/4" out instead of the XLR DI out.

    You could also use an attenuator like the THD Hotplate set for load and use the line out to your cab sim.
     
  5. riffmeister

    riffmeister Gold Supporting Member

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    The new kid on the block is the Suhr Reactive Load. Supposed to be an amazing unit, you won't need your cab sim.
     
  6. KenA

    KenA Member

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    Thanks everyone for the input ... really useful info and I'll check them asap ... I forgot to mention that I don't own (at this moment) an amp head, but I'm considering buying own. At the same time there's the questioning of: is it really worth? wouldn't it be "as good as" if I decide to go for a simpler solution like: pedals > pre-amp > Torpedo CAB > audio interface > DAW ?

    I understand that a "real amp" is of course the real deal, but once you're doing the loadbox thing it's not going to be as good as the result of proper mic > cabinet > console, right? Plus to really achieve a great "traditional" amp recording there are more things involved: good mics, proper room, etc ... well, I'm still brainstorming and considering the possibilities. Again, any tips are welcomed. :)

    ps. and in my case, recording real amps in traditional ways, just not possible.
     
  7. Blix

    Blix Supporting Member

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    Using good load (like the Suhr) and good IR's I'd say it's definitely comparable to using a quality mic>cab>console as long as you have a decent interface.
     
  8. KenA

    KenA Member

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    Yeap, now that I understood the differences between Reactive and Resistive Load ( thanks randombastage for the link ) I guess my desire to buy an amp head is back, heheh.

    If I take this route I'm thinking something like:
    Mesa Mini-Rectifier > Suhr Reactive Load > Audio Interface > DAW

    Second option would be:
    Pedals > pre-amp > Torpedo CAB > audio interface > DAW
     
  9. ryanougrad

    ryanougrad Member

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    Did you ever go with one of these setups? I'm considering a Mark V 25 and want to be able to record silently. I know it has a DI out, but I wonder what other options are out there. Is the Torpedo Live possibly the best overall solution? It's a load box and speaker cab simulator in one.

    Does anyone have an opinion on what the best reactive load box is for recording direct? I know there are plenty of opinions for playing through a cab.
     
  10. ncyankee

    ncyankee Member

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    In my opinion the best solution is the Two-Notes Reload. I picked one up and it has changed the way I look at amps, recording and tone.

    I have two young-ish (5 and 2.5) kids at home and while I have a pretty large guitar room/studio, most of my play time is after they are asleep.

    The reload allows me to record DI and then reamp through effects and amps completely silently. It also allows me to mic a cabinet and keep the signal attenuated but still sounding original for when the kids aren't home. Finally, my favorite purpose, the Reload allows me to use multiple amps because of the variable ohm options (I have an 80s JCM800 and Silverface Bassman). The Wall of Sound app is ok I haven't noticed a world of difference between it and moving a cabinet.

    In a room with lots of money one gear the Reload is the single most important part of my recording process. I feel like I can finally use my amps like they are capable.
     
  11. KenA

    KenA Member

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    Just updating this old topic. I currently use Suhr Reactive Load and VST based Cabinets and Speakers. For amps I'm using the Friedman PT-20 and the Victory V40, both into the loadbox. Choosing good VSTs and also the Convolution sw that will load the cabinets is key. The best I've found so far is actually a free one named Lernvall Audio LAConvolver. Its interface is very simple in comparison to Redwirez's one, but to my ears it's so far the only one that don't add some bite of mudness to the overall output. ( Recabinet is the worst ). For cabinets I'm using IRs Gods Cabs, Simpulse Dave and some Redwirez's cabs.
     
  12. electricity17

    electricity17 Supporting Member

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    Here's a video from Pete Thorn with some useful info on this topic:


    In your situation, you might want to consider the Fryette GP/DI. It combines a lot of useful things into one device, I don't have one but the demos I've heard sound pretty good.
     

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