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Author Topic: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.  (Read 1825 times)

Geert Friedhof

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Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« on: September 17, 2017, 08:52:05 pm »

Yep, the resonator guitar player bought a 'modeller'...

Now i have about 5 dB guitar sound and the rest is howling wolves and other crosstalk.

Guess i have to adjust to his new sound.

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Bradford "BJ" James

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2017, 09:36:54 am »

I feel you bro. These days I'm far less frustrated with guitarists and their toys than I am with lead vocalists and their toys. One guy I had this past weekend sounded like kanye west scuba diving.
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Josh Millward

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2017, 10:57:04 am »

I feel you bro. These days I'm far less frustrated with guitarists and their toys than I am with lead vocalists and their toys. One guy I had this past weekend sounded like kanye west scuba diving.
Oh good lord yes.

Whenever a lead singer shows up with his own "effects box" I always require a split of the dry microphone before it hits his box. Then I always take the output from his FX box and feed only that to the monitors. I may mix some of it into the house, if it is suitable. They always seem really happy when they get all their FX in their monitor. Everyone else in the band always seems really happy when they get only dry vocal in the monitor. It turns into a Win-Win-Win. LoL!!!
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2017, 11:13:12 am »

Oh good lord yes.

Whenever a lead singer shows up with his own "effects box" I always require a split of the dry microphone before it hits his box. Then I always take the output from his FX box and feed only that to the monitors. I may mix some of it into the house, if it is suitable. They always seem really happy when they get all their FX in their monitor. Everyone else in the band always seems really happy when they get only dry vocal in the monitor. It turns into a Win-Win-Win. LoL!!!

^^^^^^^  This. Right. Here.

ALWAYS split the singer's mic ahead of his/her FX box.  ALWAYS.

Why?  Because of the bone conductivity in the human head/hearing interface... the singer will perceive much more "dry" sound because of the direct connection.  The result is a much wetter FX mix to make the performer think the balance is right.  It's not, often by 9dB or more.  Singers also tend to not mute the FX while speaking between songs, something that makes YOU look bad so there's that as well.

I'm REALLY over most modeled guitar stuff - a big smiley face EQ curve (or it's distortion-created equal) that is all boom and buzz with precious little genuine guitar sound in between.  It may sound good to the player, trying it in a small space, but it fails on a PA system and in a mix with other instruments and vocals.  Bah Fucking Humbug... and unlike the FX-happy singer, there is no Y-cord style solution.
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Josh Millward

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2017, 11:31:14 am »

^^^^^^^  This. Right. Here.

ALWAYS split the singer's mic ahead of his/her FX box.  ALWAYS.

Why?  Because of the bone conductivity in the human head/hearing interface... the singer will perceive much more "dry" sound because of the direct connection.  The result is a much wetter FX mix to make the performer think the balance is right.  It's not, often by 9dB or more.  Singers also tend to not mute the FX while speaking between songs, something that makes YOU look bad so there's that as well.

I'm REALLY over most modeled guitar stuff - a big smiley face EQ curve (or it's distortion-created equal) that is all boom and buzz with precious little genuine guitar sound in between.  It may sound good to the player, trying it in a small space, but it fails on a PA system and in a mix with other instruments and vocals.  Bah Fucking Humbug... and unlike the FX-happy singer, there is no Y-cord style solution.

I am absolutely right there with you, Tim.

On bass and acoustic guitars, I also take my DI box and try to get it directly at the instrument output, before his pedals and "stuff". I'll also take a direct output from the bass head, if it is available, especially if the player is whining about his pedals being excluded. How much of which one to use depends totally on what they sound like. Electric guitars are the biggest pain because this modeling stuff can just make everything a massive mess.
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Geert Friedhof

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2017, 12:29:49 pm »

When or where will it end?

A few weeks ago i had an acoustic trio where the harmonica player had an fx box...
When i let him hear the difference the box was gone very fast.
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Steve Oldridge

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2017, 12:35:26 pm »

When or where will it end?

A few weeks ago i had an acoustic trio where the harmonica player had an fx box...
When i let him hear the difference the box was gone very fast.
Many folks are convinced that these "boxes" make them sound better, until proven otherwise.
I love the guys - bass, keys or guitars - that have a BBE in their racks.
I always ask them to turn it off. 
"Why? I love the sound!"
Then I fix their EQ and get the "SMH" response !! :)
Then there are those that are tone deaf and can't hear the difference.
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Andrew Broughton

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2017, 03:23:06 pm »

There was a good discussion about modelers a few years ago here.
http://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,155946.0.html
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-Andy

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Scott Bolt

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2017, 08:13:22 pm »

Yep, the resonator guitar player bought a 'modeller'...

Now i have about 5 dB guitar sound and the rest is howling wolves and other crosstalk.

Guess i have to adjust to his new sound.
I hope someday you get to hear a Kemper in the hands of someone that knows how to use it.  I was a tube amp purist for decades .... and then only boutique amps at that.  The Kemper is my only gig rig now.  My back will never go back to shleping around 4x12 cabs. 

I can honestly say that my tone is better than it has ever been.

Not all digital amps are created equally ;)
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Steve Garris

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2017, 09:32:25 pm »

I hope someday you get to hear a Kemper in the hands of someone that knows how to use it.  I was a tube amp purist for decades .... and then only boutique amps at that.  The Kemper is my only gig rig now.  My back will never go back to shleping around 4x12 cabs. 

I can honestly say that my tone is better than it has ever been.

Not all digital amps are created equally ;)

I believe you! Give 5 guitar players a Marshall amp and a pedal or two. 4 of them will manage to sound like crap, but 1 will sound great, regardless of gear.
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Callan Browne

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2017, 10:29:40 pm »

I'm also a convert to the guitar modelling world and quicky realised that you must set up your sounds at gig volume, which I do at home on my srx812's. Anybody using headphones or lower volumes is going to sound like s**t once running at a gig through the pa.

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk

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Melbourne Cover band: Shake Ya Tree

Callan Browne

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2017, 10:32:08 pm »

Yep, the resonator guitar player bought a 'modeller'...

Now i have about 5 dB guitar sound and the rest is howling wolves and other crosstalk.

Guess i have to adjust to his new sound.
Hey Geert, see if you can help the guitarist ahead of time to get a better sound, maybe by letting them plug into your pa to tweak their sounds?

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk

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Melbourne Cover band: Shake Ya Tree

Mike Caldwell

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2017, 11:04:37 pm »

Had a guy a few years ago take a very expensive Gibson acoustic/electric guitar and run it through not one, not two...but three Fishman preamp pedals!!!

All were different models connected in series, kind of like every time a new model came out he just added to what he was already using. Yea it sounded like total ass!!!

Unfortunately there was no time at that show to set up a second DI pre pedal send.

Stephen Kirby

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2017, 01:37:57 am »

  My back will never go back to shleping around 4x12 cabs. 
I don't equate digital vs. tubes to have anything to do with 4x12 cabs.  Plug a good head into a Bogner Cube and it will sound as good, albeit not as loud, as any 4-12.  Many many folks are using these behind the dummy stacks.

Played an AxeFX the other week.  Total gear nut had it set up.  No way could I get the response out of it that I get from my Fuchs.  But maybe equivalent to a Mesa Lonestar.
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Geert Friedhof

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2017, 04:38:58 am »

Hey Geert, see if you can help the guitarist ahead of time to get a better sound, maybe by letting them plug into your pa to tweak their sounds?

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk

He never used one, except for a few stomp boxes, and never told me. It was at an outdoor festival so no time. It was horrible. The VU meters stayed at -10dB. No difference in him playing or not. He could not get within 10 feet of his amplifier before getting feedback. Guess the resonator part works... And why use an (expensive) resonator guitar when you want to sound like a cheap electric guitar? Just muted inbetween songs.

Dont get me wrong. I have seen modellers on ELECTRIC guitars for many years, sometimes great sounding, but what is with the obsession to use this crap on acoustic instruments?
« Last Edit: September 19, 2017, 04:45:54 am by Geert Friedhof »
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Scott Bolt

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2017, 07:15:07 am »

I don't equate digital vs. tubes to have anything to do with 4x12 cabs.  Plug a good head into a Bogner Cube and it will sound as good, albeit not as loud, as any 4-12.  Many many folks are using these behind the dummy stacks.

Played an AxeFX the other week.  Total gear nut had it set up.  No way could I get the response out of it that I get from my Fuchs.  But maybe equivalent to a Mesa Lonestar.
The kemper has a "recording" or "profiling" mode where you use a microphone, and optionally a DI from the amp as well, to "capture" the sound and characteristics of the amp.  It does this using a frequency sweep and some clicks and so on.  The end result is very nearly identical to the amp being "profiled" when sent through a good flat full range speaker.

In fact, I would bet you that you could not pick out your Fuchs in a recording from the Kemper.  Check Youtube and you will find several instances where people try live with an amp in the room .... some successfully, some not.

The Kemper isn't a modeler to be fair.  It is a profiler.  It "captures" amps then reproduces what they are doing to the input.

Using the stock profiles will not give you the same sound as your amp since the profile will not be done with your amp setup the way you have it, nor will the tubes be biased like yours, nor will the eq be setup the way you like yours.  If you profile YOUR amp, the profile will sound identical to your amp.  It is amazing.

Many people who have multiple tube amps profile all their amps, then bring the Kemper to their gig.  Neat trick to get a Fender black face and a Bogner .... and a Marshal JMP 45, etc, etc, etc all on stage in 5 minutes.
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Dave Batistig

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2017, 10:36:26 am »

The kemper has a "recording" or "profiling" mode where you use a microphone, and optionally a DI from the amp as well, to "capture" the sound and characteristics of the amp.  It does this using a frequency sweep and some clicks and so on.  The end result is very nearly identical to the amp being "profiled" when sent through a good flat full range speaker.

In fact, I would bet you that you could not pick out your Fuchs in a recording from the Kemper.  Check Youtube and you will find several instances where people try live with an amp in the room .... some successfully, some not.

The Kemper isn't a modeler to be fair.  It is a profiler.  It "captures" amps then reproduces what they are doing to the input.

Using the stock profiles will not give you the same sound as your amp since the profile will not be done with your amp setup the way you have it, nor will the tubes be biased like yours, nor will the eq be setup the way you like yours.  If you profile YOUR amp, the profile will sound identical to your amp.  It is amazing.

Many people who have multiple tube amps profile all their amps, then bring the Kemper to their gig.  Neat trick to get a Fender black face and a Bogner .... and a Marshal JMP 45, etc, etc, etc all on stage in 5 minutes.

I saw Queensryche last December and both Michael Wilton and the young guy (forgot his name) were using Kemper amps. Their FOH guy told me Michael had "profiled" his Marshall's with the Kemper...it sounded good..sounded like Queensryche. I recently provided sound for Crowder at a local fair. Their guitarist was using Kemper, again, it sounded good. That all said, I have heard many, MANY players with AveFX, Line6, or whatever else and it sounded terrible. Grainy, brittle, etc, etc.

I was on a large stage recently at a festival with my band, an 80s tribute band, and I had a wall of Marshalls behind me, 3 full stacks. 2 of which were in use in a quasi stero rig, one for looks. All vintage JCM800s, modified with efects loops. I had this young dude come up to me after the show and tell me that my guitar tone was killer sick but I had to "get with the times" and quit lumping around all these Marshalls. He proceeded to tell me how he can get this awesome JCM800 tone from his Line 6 modeler, yada, yada, yada. I asked him who he played with and he told me he "records at home" and plays thru his headphones...I smiled and thanked him for checking out our show. 8) ;D
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Steve Oldridge

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #17 on: September 19, 2017, 12:41:27 pm »

That all said, I have heard many, MANY players with AveFX, Line6, or whatever else and it sounded terrible. Grainy, brittle, etc, etc.
I've heard as many that sounded good.
If the guitar player can't get decent tone out of a stand-alone amp.. they stand no chance with most modellers.  Too many I've seen take those "skills" and think a modeller is going to make them play better. Garbage in, is still garbage out, no matter how much you process it in between :)
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Jay Marr

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2017, 03:46:16 pm »

Modelers can sound amazing or awful.  It is 100% based on the ability of the user.
Let me say that again:  IT IS 100% BASED ON THE ABILITY OF THE USER.

I've used Axe FX, Kemper, Line 6, etc.  I can get my tone out of any of them (like it or not).
I prefer the Axe FX because the effects are also stellar. 
That being said - I also still LOVE my all tube Marshall/Mesa rig (and will never get rid of it)....but it's not practical for local gigging.
I gig my Axe FX over 100 times per year....it's a godsend.

Unfortunately, modelers give beginner/novice players the false confidence (and affordability) to think that because their rig emulates a Marshall, that it automatically sound good.
Dialing patches at low volume and/or on headphones....big mistake.

I understand why some engineers don't like modelers (because many people just don't know how to get a good tone).
But it's not the modeler's fault....it's always pilot error (as long as they own a decent modeler).

If you truly think the Kemper/Axe FX units are not worth of the big stage.  Go google some Dweezil Zappa or Larry Marshall clips.  They get beautiful tone out of the Axe FX.

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Andrew Broughton

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2017, 04:47:25 pm »

In the thread I linked to earlier, there is a link to all the Axe-FX players. Guaranteed there will be several players on that list that every guitar player will respect. The key is they don't have to use the product. They have techs who set up, tweak and maintain their rigs. They already own tons of analogue gear and they really don't need to go to a modeler for any reason other than it works better for them.


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-Andy

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Kevin Bayersdorfer

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #20 on: September 19, 2017, 05:15:37 pm »

Oh good lord yes.

Whenever a lead singer shows up with his own "effects box" I always require a split of the dry microphone before it hits his box. Then I always take the output from his FX box and feed only that to the monitors. I may mix some of it into the house, if it is suitable. They always seem really happy when they get all their FX in their monitor. Everyone else in the band always seems really happy when they get only dry vocal in the monitor. It turns into a Win-Win-Win. LoL!!!
Great idea, when I see one I usually say well ok I'll try, but I never have good experiences with them. 99% of the time before the 2nd set I remove it from the chain.
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Scott Bolt

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #21 on: September 19, 2017, 08:30:40 pm »

I saw Queensryche last December and both Michael Wilton and the young guy (forgot his name) were using Kemper amps. Their FOH guy told me Michael had "profiled" his Marshall's with the Kemper...it sounded good..sounded like Queensryche. I recently provided sound for Crowder at a local fair. Their guitarist was using Kemper, again, it sounded good. That all said, I have heard many, MANY players with AveFX, Line6, or whatever else and it sounded terrible. Grainy, brittle, etc, etc.

I was on a large stage recently at a festival with my band, an 80s tribute band, and I had a wall of Marshalls behind me, 3 full stacks. 2 of which were in use in a quasi stero rig, one for looks. All vintage JCM800s, modified with efects loops. I had this young dude come up to me after the show and tell me that my guitar tone was killer sick but I had to "get with the times" and quit lumping around all these Marshalls. He proceeded to tell me how he can get this awesome JCM800 tone from his Line 6 modeler, yada, yada, yada. I asked him who he played with and he told me he "records at home" and plays thru his headphones...I smiled and thanked him for checking out our show. 8) ;D
Ok, before I say this .... no offense to those with the equipment I am about to defame ;)

The Kemper simply acts like a tube amp better than anything but a real tube amp.  The AxeIIFx does an only slightly less impressive job of "acting tube" than the Kemper and the efx are stronger on the Axe.  These are the only two digital amps I currently put in the same category as a real tube amp.

While the Line 6 stuff is "Ok" for practice at home with headphones, it misses the mark IMO for live work.  The new Helix is better, but still quite "thin" compared to the real thing.  The older pod stuff (to my ears) was simply bad in any live situation.  It was thin and didn't cut into the mix as a good tube amp does.

.... and I completely agree.... a singer with an "efx box" requires a split of the dry mic before it hits the box.  Anything else is sure to get you into a world of s***.
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Roch Lafleur

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Re: Oh dear, the guitarist has a new fx toy.
« Reply #22 on: September 20, 2017, 09:30:42 am »

Same here re singers with their own "pedal"... split that signal! IMO, there's almost no situation where their settings, which may sound good to them on stage, will translate well in a bigger p.a.

As for profilers/modellers for guitar (or bass), I'm buying into the idea. A few years ago I mixed a band where the guitarist had a Kemper. I was very skeptical as I had never even heard of it. I assumed it would be bad. Turns out I was wrong. It sounded very good. So I started doing a bit of research and was blown away. I also stumbled on the Fractal Audio gear since a facebook friend works at FAS and keeps posting videos of his demos. Again, blown away.

I also play bass in a rock trio (cover band) where I have to cover quite a white range of styles (Beatles, Blue Rodeo, Foo Fighters, Black Keys, Big Sugar, Metallica, Black Sabbath, Clash) . Think clean, punchy, bright, dirty, very dirty, fuzzy, octave up and down, emulating simple guitar parts, synthy, etc. I ended up with a 28x16 board mostly loaded with boutique pedals. Last month, I listed  all my pedals (also have a smaller board for my country bands, including a touring artist). I've sold about half so far totaling close to Cdn$2,000 and purchased the FAS AX8. I only spent about 6 hours programming it and came up with some pretty cool tones, most pretty close to what pedals could do.

Although I have several amps and cabs (Aguilar, Ampeg, Euphonic Audio, Bergantino), I have been on IEM since 2003 and rarely use a rig for live shows, unless there is one already on stage at a festival. I used the AX8 at a show for the first time a couple weekends ago and it turns out my settings were a little too bassy for the FOH guy. No problem! I just turned down the bass on the output of the board and also sent him a direct signal (post effects but pre amp and cab simulator) et voilą! The rest of the band loved the tone in their IEM. Apparently it was also pretty good out front. Carrying a pedal in a laptop bag is certainly more appealing to me than carrying a huge pedal board + 50-100lbs tube head and 100lbs cab. It is also more consistent, quieter on stage and sounds even better in my IEM.

For programming, I started with presets from other users and found them really bass heavy. This was done at a pretty high volume through one of my PRX615 which is a bit scooped. I rolled off the low end quite a bit, but not quite as much as I would have since I knew the 615 was bassy. I will be going to my buddy's studio in the next couple of weeks to do more programming through his reference monitors. I think that should get me pretty close to where I want to be. I'm currently using an Orange 200B and Aguilar 810 simulators, but may end up removing the Ag or both from my signal chain. The effects are awesome though. You can get lost easily in programming these things as there are endless parameters to adjust. From what I've heard so far, I'm confident it will be perfect to cover any band I play with.
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