Amplitube 2 vs. NI Guitar Combo

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by hdiddy, Dec 14, 2005.

  1. hdiddy

    hdiddy Supporting Member

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    Howdy

    Since Sweetwater is doing their same as cash deal. i was looking to get some Guitar Software. They are the same price, because I am upgrading the Amp. LE and I was wondering of any one has compared the two? I know that the Amplitube is more versatile, but I was going for what would sound the most realistic

    Please let me know your thoughts. I do not want to spend the extra money for Guitar Rig or the new Waves System.

    if Orren is around I wonder if he has reviewed the two

    Thanks
    Howard
     
  2. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    Then there's the new thing by Waves. I'm also curious how they all compare in real life. The magazine reviews are useless, because everything is great and nothing sounds better than anything else.
     
  3. elambo

    elambo Member

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    I have GuitarRig, the first version, and it's great for clean tones, but not so great at distortion. The demos for Guitar Combo sound really good though, so maybe they've rewritten some code for the Combo version.

    I've always thought Amplitube was a decent program, clean or distorted, but that it lacked the vibe and inspiration of GR. I've played Ver 2, but not much. I'm more familiar with the prior one.

    Based on their demos, if it were me, I'd go with Guitar Combo.
     
  4. hdiddy

    hdiddy Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the info
    I was leaning towards Gtr. COmbo
     
  5. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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  6. muddy

    muddy Member

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    yeah michael, that new waves app sounded really interesting on that real audio demo of it for namm or aes. seemed to be highly user-configurable, too.


    ml
     
  7. jzucker

    jzucker Supporting Member

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    Howard,

    Give me a call offline. You're welcome to borrow my Guitar Rig software to see if you like it.

    I love guitar rig 1.2 for cleans but wasn't knocked out with it's distortion although it had a pretty nice semi distorted fender. Guitar Rig 2 adds a better plexi marshall and some tweed fender sounds but is still nothing like a real amp.

    Waves GTR sounded awful in the demo IMO. I've tried amplitube and wasn't too impressed.
     
  8. muddy

    muddy Member

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    really? i thought it (gtr) sounded pretty good., considering the sound on those real audio clips is generally bad.


    ml
     
  9. Melodic Dreamer

    Melodic Dreamer Member

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    I think these types of software are better used as speaker simulations. Running a good head into a good load and then into Guitar Rig can sound really good.
     
  10. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    I disagree, I've gotten some great distorted tones of all flavours from GR.
     
  11. Orren

    Orren Member

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    Hi Howard,

    I wasn't around because I was racing to finish my next book...on Guitar Rig 2. :)

    To answer your question, I know an awful lot about Guitar Rig 2 and the Guitar Combos.

    I have reviewed Amplitube 1.0 for my Feb '05 Electronic Musician round up of guitar amp plug-ins. You can find that here: http://emusician.com/mag/emusic_stack_box/index.html

    Basically, I disliked amplitube's amp simulations. It's effects were nice, but I didn't like their amps.

    I like Native Instrument's amps. I think they sound especially good when you turn down the gain. I don't mean you need to use them clean, I mean that you just turn the gain to the minimum gain that you need for your guitar parts. That's where you'll find the "sweet spot."

    I can't tell you about Amplitube 2.0...AFAIK its not out yet.

    Hope that helps,
    Orren
     
  12. Orren

    Orren Member

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    I've not checked it out, but I'd like to. They've not sent a review version to EM yet, or if they have, it went out to someone else. Waves is generally a rather user and media hostile company, however, so I'm not counting on it.

    From what I've heard, the software sounds just fine. I've heard its main strength is that it ships with a preamp that has an impedance matched Hi-Z (1 MΩ) input, so that you get a great signal into the software. Then again, the Rig Kontrol 2 also offers an impedance matched Hi-Z input...

    Read the round up I link to above. Everything is not great, I call it like I see it. (Interesting side note, IK Multimedia complained, but EM stood up for me).

    Some things to keep in mind, however:
    1) We reviewers normally choose what we want to review. We tend not to select stuff we know in advance is junk. That's not to say it doesn't turn out to be junk, but more often than not, stuff that really stinks doesn't get reviewed.

    2) We have to compare stuff against things in its same price range. So sure, an M-Audio microphone preamp isn't going to sound as good as a Great River preamp, but we are going to compare it to the Edirol preamps--and the M-Audio might sound good, even very good, by comparison.

    3) There is only a limited space in the print mag. If you are a publisher, what would you rather print, a review of something that is really killer and that deserves the notoriety, or a review of something that sucks and that you don't even think deserves the space? So the positive reviews tend to get printed, the negative stuff bumped until they have an opening. In fact, I think there's a negative review in the December EM, and it clearly is an old product that got bumped quite a bit.

    But I agree, there are reviewers who do that (and magazines that don't like publishing criticisms). Its unfortunate that some soft pedal, because it puts all of us on the defensive, when in fact some of us do try to be balanced.

    Orren
     
  13. Orren

    Orren Member

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    I'm assuming you mean the Lead 800 amp, based off a rodded Marshall JCM800. There already was a "Plexi" amp, and it wasn't changed.

    You are of course entitled to your opinion. :) But if you haven't yet, my recommendations to get the best out of Guitar Rig 2 are:
    1) Make sure you are using a specially matched DI box or microphone preamp that offers at least a 1MΩ Hi-Z input. To get the best out of any of these programs, that's what you need. That's why Waves ships with the PRS co-branded DI box, and Guitar Rig 2 ships with a Rig Kontrol 2 with a 1MΩ Hi-Z input. Its not just a "loudness" issue, they get a more realistic pickup tone into your computer, and everything benefits.

    2) Turn on Hi Res mode.

    3) Turn down the gain (BTW Jack, An expert of your skill level doesn't need gain staging advice, but it's part of my regular advice to everyone. :) )

    Even following all this isn't a guarantee anyone will love GR2, but at least if you do these things, you know you'll be hearing it at its best. I think its the most worthy offering out there today of all I've tried, which is why I wrote about it. But in the end, my opinion is just that--my opinion. :)

    Orren
     
  14. Orren

    Orren Member

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    I agree that a great use of this stuff is to use it as a speaker simulator. I have a chapter on all the nifty studio tricks you can use this stuff for, including that. :)

    (My book, by the way, is not a "reference manual" but more of a workbook of tips and tutorials and working methods, and should be out around February 2006).

    Orren
     
  15. Ed DeGenaro

    Ed DeGenaro Supporting Member

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    Here's my deal on any of this...
    Like the speaker sims in GR...1+2 for that matter.
    The ability to animate efx via LFO's in GR2 is great for well keyboard tye abuse in GR 2.
    The stomp boxes in GTR are cool, the amps I can do less than with GR2.
    Still waiting for my NFR of Amplitube 2.
     
  16. jzucker

    jzucker Supporting Member

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    Correct. But GR's plexi amp is relatively poor compared to the Vox tonelab. The JCM800 sounds a little better to me.

    GR's distorted tones are still lacking and the blues tones get a 3.5 out of 5 but still don't compare to a real amp.
     
  17. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    >> Everything is not great, I call it like I see it. (Interesting side note, IK Multimedia complained, but EM stood up for me)...

    I really didn't mean that comment to refer to you, directly or indirectly. Not by a long shot. I've always liked your reviews. In fact, I believe you wrote a very useful review of this stuff not too long ago... but it was before some of these products were released, I'm pretty sure.

    >> But I agree, there are reviewers who do that (and magazines that don't like publishing criticisms). Its unfortunate that some soft pedal, because it puts all of us on the defensive, when in fact some of us do try to be balanced.

    In retrospect I guess I should have specifically excluded you, since you post so frequently here. Sorry to have put you on the defensive.

    While we're at it: which of these products are useable for speaker simulation only?
     
  18. hdiddy

    hdiddy Supporting Member

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    Thanks for all the info guys

    I decided to go with the NI Guitar Combo; I also got on ebay the Nomad Factory Rock Legends and I have Amplitube LE.
    Hopefully soon I can do a semi comparison of everything.

    Orren thanks on the info on the HiZ 1m input; I have to check to see if Presonus Eureka has it (Possibly my next same as cash purchase). I know that the FW1884 has a guitar level input, but do not no the specs
     
  19. µ¿ z3®ø™

    µ¿ z3®ø™ Member

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    i'm surprised more peeps aren't considering this piece o' software.
    none of them are anywhere near perfect and they all have their own subset of strengths and weaknesses. but NFs little trick of creating 'creamy' distortion is pretty cool. not as touch responsive as GTR in the middle gain settings, not as good a clean sound as GR, can't say anything about amplitube 2 'cuz i ain't heard it.
    i must say that the ads for amplitube 2 i find extremely disappointing. the ones i've seen sport a CGI of some trashy, fake chick that looks like something from a bad misogynist video game. if the sim sounds like she looks, it'll be bad news.
    cartoon girl.
    cartoon tone.
     
  20. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    There's got to be a lyric in that.
     

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