Help - Cab emulator/direct box

jzucker

Supporting Member
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20,734
I've heard mixed stuff about the H&K redbox and the Palmer DI stuff. What I want to do is go out of a Mesa Studio Preamp, into a Mackie Mixer and then direct to digital.

Mostly interested in fender clean type eqing but I need fusionesque tones too. A plus would be a device that allows me to tap off the speaker output.

I know this is not optimal but it's what I have to work with...
 

Ed DeGenaro

Supporting Member
Messages
22,102
Originally posted by jzucker
I've heard mixed stuff about the H&K redbox and the Palmer DI stuff. What I want to do is go out of a Mesa Studio Preamp, into a Mackie Mixer and then direct to digital.

Mostly interested in fender clean type eqing but I need fusionesque tones too. A plus would be a device that allows me to tap off the speaker output.

I know this is not optimal but it's what I have to work with...
Again... native Instruments guitar Rig with the amp sims turned off.
http://www.eddegenaro.com/audio/clip20.mp3
http://www.eddegenaro.com/audio/clip1.mp3
http://www.eddegenaro.com/audio/clip10.mp3
 

jzucker

Supporting Member
Messages
20,734
Those sound great Ed. The problem is that I'm using an external audio card (firewire). Round trip on the card even without software processing is 5-6ms. I'm guessing there's probably a 10ms delay with the software processing. Maybe more...

How much is that plug in?
 

Ed DeGenaro

Supporting Member
Messages
22,102
Originally posted by jzucker
Those sound great Ed. The problem is that I'm using an external audio card (firewire). Round trip on the card even without software processing is 5-6ms. I'm guessing there's probably a 10ms delay with the software processing. Maybe more...

How much is that plug in?
well 10 ms is like standing on stage.
Also since you're talking clean you can just record the DI signal and then add the plug-in.
It's like 400 bucks. Which is cheaper than the big Palmer and I much prefer its tone.
And you get a few amazing delays in addition to it.
 

jzucker

Supporting Member
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20,734
Originally posted by Ed DeGenaro
well 10 ms is like standing on stage.
Also since you're talking clean you can just record the DI signal and then add the plug-in.
It's like 400 bucks. Which is cheaper than the big Palmer and I much prefer its tone.
And you get a few amazing delays in addition to it.
Problem is the tone greatly effects my playing. I've done tests where I recorded dry and wet and it's amazing the difference in my phrasing. I suppose I could use the aux bus in my mixer or something...
 

Ed DeGenaro

Supporting Member
Messages
22,102
Originally posted by jzucker
Problem is the tone greatly effects my playing. I've done tests where I recorded dry and wet and it's amazing the difference in my phrasing. I suppose I could use the aux bus in my mixer or something...
FWIW, I have no issue dealing with a plug-in and running at 10 ms latency. I'm fairly certain you do neither.
 

jzucker

Supporting Member
Messages
20,734
Originally posted by Ed DeGenaro
FWIW, I have no issue dealing with a plug-in and running at 10 ms latency. I'm fairly certain you do neither.
Sounds like I should try that software. Thanks for the tip. Does guitar center carry it?
 

Ed DeGenaro

Supporting Member
Messages
22,102
Originally posted by jzucker
I wonder if their 30 day return policy applies to software?
If it doesn't run on your machine right and if it isn't registered...prolly.
 

LSchefman

Member
Messages
13,435
GC won't let you return opened software. Find the manufacturer's website, and see if there's a trial download.

BTW, Jack, I've been stuck in studio land, and will try to get that balanced line converter off for you to fiddle around with tomorrow.
 

Unburst

Member
Messages
4,215
Definitely give Guitar Rig a try, it's as good an amp sim as I've heard, plus you can use the cab sims on their own if you want to use a hardware preamp.

I know I sound like a broken record here but if you want a cab sim, find an ADA Micro Cab II or even better, an Ampulator.
They aren't made any more so you'll have to hunt on ebay but they are cheap.

Did you buy the Mesa already?
I'm not sure it's going to get you the Fender type tones you want.

imo to get good clean tones you really need to be running through an output transformer, that means using a power amp.

I think the closest you will get to a great clean tone with a DI is an amp, a Hotplate and an ADA Microcab.
The best clean DI tones I ever got was with a Fender Pro Jnr, a custom load box (clone of Holdsworth's pre-Rocktron Juice Extractor) and a Micro Cab II.
 

jzucker

Supporting Member
Messages
20,734
Originally posted by Unburst
Definitely give Guitar Rig a try, it's as good an amp sim as I've heard, plus you can use the cab sims on their own if you want to use a hardware preamp.
One thing I thought of. Due to RF noise, I'm probably going to eventually switch to a non computer based recording setup so it doesn't make sense to use a software based amp simulator.

By the way, check out the 2 clips I just recorded with my Mesa Studio Preamp.

1st take on each of them. Not bad for 15 minutes worth of tweaking.

http://www.sheetsofsound.net/audio/mp3/bluesfunk.mp3 (funk fuzoid)
http://www.sheetsofsound.net/audio/mp3/jazzsolowank.mp3 (solo jazz guitar)
 

Ed DeGenaro

Supporting Member
Messages
22,102
Originally posted by jzucker
One thing I thought of. Due to RF noise, I'm probably going to eventually switch to a non computer based recording setup so it doesn't make sense to use a software based amp simulator.

By the way, check out the 2 clips I just recorded with my Mesa Studio Preamp.

1st take on each of them. Not bad for 15 minutes worth of tweaking.

http://www.sheetsofsound.net/audio/mp3/bluesfunk.mp3 (funk fuzoid)
http://www.sheetsofsound.net/audio/mp3/jazzsolowank.mp3 (solo jazz guitar)
Damn you're really fighting the easy options here Jack. But hey, it's your trip down GAS alley.
As for stand alone speaker sims...
I used them all sti;ll own the $500 Palmer thing and the only time that comes out is when i work with yet another engineer that has so no clue about tracking guitars.
 

renico00

Member
Messages
238
Unburst

Did you build the loadbox yourself? I've been looking for a schematic for the Juice Extractor. I would e-mail you but you have that hidden...

Jeff
 

Unburst

Member
Messages
4,215
Originally posted by jzucker
One thing I thought of. Due to RF noise, I'm probably going to eventually switch to a non computer based recording setup so it doesn't make sense to use a software based amp simulator.
By the way, check out the 2 clips I just recorded with my Mesa Studio Preamp.
1st take on each of them. Not bad for 15 minutes worth of tweaking.
Jack-The clean clip sounds pretty good, a little spiky on the top strings but with a decent rack compressor (RNC or maybe a half rack Summit if you want to splurge) you could make that sound good.

The fusiony clip on the other hand was pretty typically DI'd sounding to my ears, was that the Mesa's recording out? They use a pretty primitive eq iirc, I know i could never use it even on their flagship Quad preamp.
Guitar Rig's cab simulation would sound a lot better than the Mesa's if you were to go the computer route.

For a hardware setup, my advice is to find a used ADA Ampulator, it is a cab sim with a 12AX-7 tube configured to run as a power amp, you plug your pre-amp of choice, into it, DI out and away you go.
It will add more body to your high strings on clean sounds and give much better cab sim. than the Mesa on it's own.
The biggest problem in recording clean guitar DI'd, especially single notes, is getting a tonal balance between the low and high strings, having some kind of power amp will help achieve this.

The other option is a used ADA MicroCab II and a decent (rack) compressor, the RNC is very good for the money and very cheap used.
You could buy both for around $300.

Another cool thing about Guitar Rig is it has a nice compressor built into it and some good eq's too.
If you get your RF problems sorted out it's worth investigating.
I can get decent jazz tones from my Tele and some tweaking, I have no doubt you would get a great clean and fusion OD tones out of it.
 

Unburst

Member
Messages
4,215
Originally posted by renico00
Unburst
Did you build the loadbox yourself? I've been looking for a schematic for the Juice Extractor. I would e-mail you but you have that hidden...
Jeff
No I didn't build it myself, a few years ago (like maybe 10) a friend of mine was working in a Ca. studio that Holdsworth used to hang out in and the tech there built one for me.
It's a very simple design, basically a heating element. I've got some good sounds using it, usually for thick sounding lead tones, but you'd probably do better with a Hotplate or a Weber MASS for general stuff.

I don't use it much, you could prbably tempt me to part with it....
My email is on, feel free to drop me a line.
 

bjm007

Member
Messages
569
There are only two that I think are worth using:

1) Palmer PDI-03

2) Groove Tubes SE-II

Palmer makes some newer models (PGA-04, etc) that sound pretty good IF you know how to dial them in. The PDI-03 is long discontinued because of the GT lawsuit, but they can be had on ebay for about $2k every once in a while. Wjen you have the two Palmer's side by side, you can begin to tweak it to sound pretty close to the newer stuff.
 




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