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Old 07-28-2019, 10:16 AM   #1
Wavelength
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Default Amp-Simulator: Overdrive-Sims drain amp of volume and tone!

Hi All,

Been really trying to obtain a good sound (mild overdrive with sustsin) to no avail. Everytine I load an overdrive/distortion pedal-sim it destroys the tone and severely cuts back on the overall volume and leaves the sound void of tone. Can someone please chime-in and help me to understand what I am doing wrong? It doesn't matter if I'm using all-in-one simulators (i.e. Amplitube4 or TH-U) or chain-simulators (paid or free individual and separate components). I have studied this for awhile but can't find a solution.

Thank you for your time.

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Old 07-28-2019, 10:19 AM   #2
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I'm not sure I understand, volume is just a matter of turning the output of the SIM up post overdrive and for devoid of tone and similar terms, posting a sample would really be best.
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:24 AM   #3
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I don't use distortion pedals, only sim amps. Kazrog in my case.
I find it easier to get an smooth distortion that way.
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:51 AM   #4
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KarboMusic, thank you for your reply. Working on uploading a sound sample. Good point!
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:52 AM   #5
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If it's cutting the overall volume by a noticeable amount, then you might be putting too much gain into the pedal.

Also, some pedals affect tone like that on purpose, for instance, I don't tend to like tube screamer pedals except when I'm using the bridge pickup of my strat or tele in order to smooth out the high end attack.
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:55 AM   #6
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Msundh, thank you. Yes, I tend to agree. But some amp-sims with built-in overdrive sound really cheesy, fizzy and rob tone. Finicky stuff for sure. Working on it!
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:05 AM   #7
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If you could describe the tone you are after a bit more, it would be helpful. For example you could name a player, band, song etc. what has the type of tone you would like to get.

In the meanwhile you mentioned a “mild overdrive with sustain” and that in mind you could try to add a compressor pedal in to your chain. That is how a cleaner overdriven sound could be made to sustain more. But first you should check whether you are running your overdrive pedal in to the clean channel of the amp or if it is boosting the dirty channel? If you try to get a more bluesy driven sound, you might want to point that overdrive pedal in to your clean channel and then use the pedal's drive to have that overdriven/mildly distorted sound that you can shape to your liking with the amp's eq.

If you have put that overdrive pedal in to the distorted channel, then it is trying to just boost what is already there, that is the amp's distortion and it does not add more volume, like it probably would on the clean channel, just more distortion.
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Msundh, thank you. Yes, I tend to agree. But some amp-sims with built-in overdrive sound really cheesy, fizzy and rob tone. Finicky stuff for sure. Working on it!
That reminds me of the difference between monitoring an amp/overdrive in a room with your ears vs what it sounds like with a mic up in the cone then coming out of monitor speakers. I'm not saying that a SIM can't sound like you are stating, just that they start sounding much closer when both are being heard through studio monitors.

That said, I can probably whip up some loose sim/amp comparisons, only because I was recording something as an unrelated test with both the other day.
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:18 AM   #9
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Karbomusic, I will send a detailed sound sample later. Starting recording it but have to go out for a bit. Can I send via private message (if yes, how do I send you a private message?). Thank you karbomusic.
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
But some amp-sims with built-in overdrive sound really cheesy, fizzy and rob tone.
Hope you don't forget to use a cab sim, or pick a variety of cab sim you like, seems to be one of the key components IMO.
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:41 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Karbomusic, I will send a detailed sound sample later. Starting recording it but have to go out for a bit. Can I send via private message (if yes, how do I send you a private message?). Thank you karbomusic.
Sure PM is not problem. I'll send you a quick one since some say that when they send one to me the first time it for some reason gets blocked. I have to head out to and may not be home until 10PM EST FYI.
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:51 AM   #12
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Definitely grab the new Tonelib GFX for free! https://tonelib.net/gfx-overview/

I've been able to get great sounds out of it, while loading my own impulses in

VERY low CPU use as well
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Old 07-28-2019, 11:54 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeekat View Post
Hope you don't forget to use a cab sim, or pick a variety of cab sim you like, seems to be one of the key components IMO.
I don't really use amp sims, but I mess around with them to see what I can get out of them. Normally I monitor guitar through a low power amp, speaker, Sennheiser 421, REAPER, and studio monitors so I hear what I'm going to end up with.

I agree that cab sims are a huge part of making an amp sim sound more genuine, prefer to use IRs made from real guitar speaker cabs. I've done some side-by-side comparisons to see how close I could get an amp sim to sound like my real setup, and they can get close enough that you'd need to do A/B comparisons to identify what the guitar sim lacks. In a mix, prolly never notice.
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Old 07-28-2019, 07:44 PM   #14
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Hi All,

Yes, I do have an IR cabinet sim loaded. I use NadIR Impulse Response loader by Ignite Amps. I believe they only allow their own IR's to be loaded. See link below. I also use Lepou's Poulin LeCab2 as an IR loader.

http://www.igniteamps.com/#nadir

However, in regards to this thread, I am not using either of the above. I guess we should all be on the same page and will provide the exact amp-sim I am utilizing. It's free (Classic Thirty by Dave Clark). It's an all-in-one amp-sim like Amplitube4 but in addition I am also utilizing a couple of separate outboard chain effects such as the TSE-808 overdrive pedal (pedal-sim) and the Klanghelm MJUCjr Compressor. Both free as well. See links below.

Classic Thirty by Dave Clark
https://www.kvraudio.com/product/cla...exe-consulting


Klanghelm MJUCjr Compressor (Scroll down selection)
https://splice.com/blog/the-5-best-f...-free-presets/

TSE808 Overdrive pedal-sim
https://www.tseaudio.com/software/tse808

The Classuc Thirty is an all-in-one simulator (like Amplitube4) that has a built-in cabinet IR and effects. They are all listed along the bottom of the user-interface. I am using their built-in Cabinet only as far as the selection listed.

The sound I am striving for (among ALL the demos and free amp-sims I've auditioned) is my basic real amp setup which is a '67 Blackface Fender Twin Reverb, a Maxon Overdrive OD-808 Pedal and an MXR Dyna Comp Compressor (for sustain). A goal would be to get the free amp-sim listed above to sound like one of Overloud's "Fender Classics" rig library. Samples can be heard here:

https://overloud.com/products/american-classics

Professionals who have a similar sound are Derek Trucks, Warren Hanes and Neil Young. Ok, they're not using Fender Twins but you get my drift ... an overdriven sound but not saturation.

If anyone can kindly succeed at attaining an acceptable overdriven sound by using the above three simulators please advise me on your settings. I would very much appreciate it. I'm still working on it as we speak.

In his helpful article titled, "A Guide to Amp Sims", the author said,

-begin-
"So lets start with the first lesson: You don't need a Kemper OR an Axe-FX to get a great sounding sim tone. In fact, I warn against Kempers because they're only as good as the profiles it has (which cost extra). The other danger of the Kemper is they're too instant gratification (same with the Axe-FX) you don't really need to know a lot to use someone elses kemper profile to get a monster tone. HEED MY WARNING: If you can't get a usable/decent tone out of free amp sims/IRs chance are you won't with the big daddies either. DON'T BE THE GUY THAT THINKS BECAUSE AXE-FX COSTS $2500 YOU ARE GUARUNTEED A GOOD TONE.
-end-

Pretty bold statement. Sounds like he's had much experience with amp-sims. I'm not sure how different one amp sim is from another in terms of programming and algorithms but
I'd like to see if this author is correct in his claim in regards to free amp-sims.

Thank you very much.

p.s. Again, Overloud's TH-U amp-sim has a really good sound especially their "Fender Classics" add-on.

https://overloud.com/products/american-classics

Last edited by Wavelength; 07-28-2019 at 08:08 PM.
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Old 07-28-2019, 08:08 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
The sound I am striving for (among ALL the demos and free amp-sims I've auditioned) is my basic real amp setup which is a '67 Blackface Fender Twin Reverb, a Maxon Overdrive OD-808 Pedal and an MXR Dyna Comp Compressor (for sustain).
Having a real setup to compare should make things a lot easier. For that setup, you should be able to get pretty close with the free version of amplitube as it includes two fender amps and an mxr compressor (I'm not sure what the default overdrive is supposed to be, but I don't think it's an 808 so maybe drop the mxr comp and put the 808 plugin and another compressor before amplitube, assuming you're putting the compressor first).

Although, saying that, tonelib-gfx has a huge range of amps, cabs and effects to choose from, so you might have more luck with that.

Personally, I find it difficult to get decent drive tones from vox amp sims as the tone stack pushes the sound into distortion way too easily (e.g. I try boosting the bass and I just get a thinner, more distorted sound)
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Old 07-29-2019, 02:59 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Hi All,

Yes, I do have an IR cabinet sim loaded. I use NadIR Impulse Response loader by Ignite Amps. I believe they only allow their own IR's to be loaded.
No, you can load other IR's, not just their own. I haven't bothered to use NadIR for a long time, but I thought the comment sounded wrong so I downloaded the current version (not at home to load whatever version I had) and you can load other 3rd party IR's no problem.
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Old 07-29-2019, 04:41 AM   #17
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Yep, as "jinotsuh" says, you certainly can use 3rd party IR's with NadIR. I regularly use the free Red Wire Marshall Cab IRs.

You might not be after the Marshall sound but its good for free and has about a dozen quality mics as well. Might get you close.

https://www.redwirez.com/free1960g12m25s.jsp

rob
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Old 07-29-2019, 05:49 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by jinotsuh View Post
No, you can load other IR's, not just their own. I haven't bothered to use NadIR for a long time, but I thought the comment sounded wrong so I downloaded the current version (not at home to load whatever version I had) and you can load other 3rd party IR's no problem.
@ jinotsuh and westie07

Thank you. Yes, you are both correct. I located the proper folder icon beneath each file display window in NadIR. I initially was attempting to load 3rd party IR's using the "load" button at the top left of the user interface. All good now! Thank you!

Last edited by Wavelength; 07-29-2019 at 08:10 AM.
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Old 07-29-2019, 08:08 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glennbo View Post
I agree that cab sims are a huge part of making an amp sim sound more genuine, prefer to use IRs made from real guitar speaker cabs.
@ Glennbo

I thought all cabinet IR's were created from real cabinets!?!? Since when are there "fake" cabinet IR's? Please explain. Thank you very much.
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Old 07-29-2019, 08:21 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
@ Glennbo

I thought all cabinet IR's were created from real cabinets!?!? Since when are there "fake" cabinet IR's? Please explain. Thank you very much.
I was differentiating between modeled cabinet sims vs IRs. ToneLib for instance has modeled speaker cabinet simulations (as does Guitar Rig), but ToneLib also includes IR's for speaker cabinet simulation.
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Old 07-29-2019, 08:32 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by westie07 View Post
I regularly use the free Red Wire Marshall Cab IRs.
You might not be after the Marshall sound but its good for free and has about a dozen quality mics as well. Might get you close.

https://www.redwirez.com/free1960g12m25s.jsp

rob
Thanks westie07! I just downloaded the Red Wirez free Marshall cab IRs. Much appreciated!
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Old 07-29-2019, 08:53 AM   #22
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bedroom is a good source
https://bedroomproducersblog.com/?s=impulse+response
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Old 07-29-2019, 01:12 PM   #23
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I was differentiating between modeled cabinet sims vs IRs. ToneLib for instance has modeled speaker cabinet simulations (as does Guitar Rig), but ToneLib also includes IR's for speaker cabinet simulation.
Thank you! I'm new to all this simulation software. Had no idea there were two types of Cabinet sims (modeled cabinet sims vs IRs). Is there a link, website or source for learning all the types of simulators/IRs for cabs, amps, effects etc.? Thank you very much. Been googling all this for weeks and finally learning the lingo! Been a guitarist since '73 (lead/slide). Late to the game (as they say).

Last edited by Wavelength; 07-30-2019 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 07-29-2019, 01:19 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Thank you! I'm new to all this simulation software. Had no idea there were two types of Cabinet sims (modeled cabinet sims vs IRs). Is there a link, website or source for learning all the types of simulators/IRs for cabs, amps, effects etc.? Thank you very much. Been googling all this for weeks and finally learning the lingo! Been a guitarist lead/slide since '73. Late to the game(as they say).
Best way to get familiar is to dive in head first. If you don't have ToneLib,

https://tonelib.net/gfx-overview/

you should grab it and try it out. You'll see first hand the difference between a computer modeled speaker cab and IRs.
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Old 07-29-2019, 01:20 PM   #25
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Thank you msundh! Lots of great products! Appreciate it very much!
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Old 07-29-2019, 01:29 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by pipelineaudio View Post
Definitely grab the new Tonelib GFX for free! https://tonelib.net/gfx-overview/

I've been able to get great sounds out of it, while loading my own impulses in

VERY low CPU use as well
Thank you pipelineaudio! I downloaded and installed ToneLib GFX. It sure is an interesting piece of software! Doesn't sound bad at all!

Last edited by Wavelength; 07-29-2019 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 07-29-2019, 04:26 PM   #27
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It's very individual and subjective, but I hate simulated pedals. I much prefer a real pedal going into an amp sim (usually Amplitube Fender).

I will say that the OCD pedal in Amplitube does have a good sound, albeit different from the actual pedal.
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Old 07-30-2019, 11:38 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glennbo View Post
Best way to get familiar is to dive in head first. If you don't have ToneLib,

https://tonelib.net/gfx-overview/

you should grab it and try it out. You'll see first hand the difference between a computer modeled speaker cab and IRs.
Done! Installed ToneLib GFX and yes, I can hear the difference. Working on the software now. BTW, what exactly is modeling verses an actual IR? Thank you.
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Old 07-30-2019, 11:44 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Done! Installed ToneLib GFX and yes, I can hear the difference. Working on the software now. BTW, what exactly is modeling verses an actual IR? Thank you.
IR cabinet sims use a sample from a speaker cab, then a computer algorithm constructs an approximation based on the sample. Modeled uses no sample and is pure computer algorithm.
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Old 07-30-2019, 06:25 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wavelength View Post
Hi All,

Yes, I do have an IR cabinet sim loaded. I use NadIR Impulse Response loader by Ignite Amps. I believe they only allow their own IR's to be loaded. See link below. I also use Lepou's Poulin LeCab2 as an IR loader.

http://www.igniteamps.com/#nadir

However, in regards to this thread, I am not using either of the above. I guess we should all be on the same page and will provide the exact amp-sim I am utilizing. It's free (Classic Thirty by Dave Clark). It's an all-in-one amp-sim like Amplitube4 but in addition I am also utilizing a couple of separate outboard chain effects such as the TSE-808 overdrive pedal (pedal-sim) and the Klanghelm MJUCjr Compressor. Both free as well. See links below.

Classic Thirty by Dave Clark
https://www.kvraudio.com/product/cla...exe-consulting


Klanghelm MJUCjr Compressor (Scroll down selection)
https://splice.com/blog/the-5-best-f...-free-presets/

TSE808 Overdrive pedal-sim
https://www.tseaudio.com/software/tse808

The Classuc Thirty is an all-in-one simulator (like Amplitube4) that has a built-in cabinet IR and effects. They are all listed along the bottom of the user-interface. I am using their built-in Cabinet only as far as the selection listed.

The sound I am striving for (among ALL the demos and free amp-sims I've auditioned) is my basic real amp setup which is a '67 Blackface Fender Twin Reverb, a Maxon Overdrive OD-808 Pedal and an MXR Dyna Comp Compressor (for sustain). A goal would be to get the free amp-sim listed above to sound like one of Overloud's "Fender Classics" rig library. Samples can be heard here:

https://overloud.com/products/american-classics

Professionals who have a similar sound are Derek Trucks, Warren Hanes and Neil Young. Ok, they're not using Fender Twins but you get my drift ... an overdriven sound but not saturation.

If anyone can kindly succeed at attaining an acceptable overdriven sound by using the above three simulators please advise me on your settings. I would very much appreciate it. I'm still working on it as we speak.

In his helpful article titled, "A Guide to Amp Sims", the author said,

-begin-
"So lets start with the first lesson: You don't need a Kemper OR an Axe-FX to get a great sounding sim tone. In fact, I warn against Kempers because they're only as good as the profiles it has (which cost extra). The other danger of the Kemper is they're too instant gratification (same with the Axe-FX) you don't really need to know a lot to use someone elses kemper profile to get a monster tone. HEED MY WARNING: If you can't get a usable/decent tone out of free amp sims/IRs chance are you won't with the big daddies either. DON'T BE THE GUY THAT THINKS BECAUSE AXE-FX COSTS $2500 YOU ARE GUARUNTEED A GOOD TONE.
-end-

Pretty bold statement. Sounds like he's had much experience with amp-sims. I'm not sure how different one amp sim is from another in terms of programming and algorithms but
I'd like to see if this author is correct in his claim in regards to free amp-sims.

Thank you very much.

p.s. Again, Overloud's TH-U amp-sim has a really good sound especially their "Fender Classics" add-on.

https://overloud.com/products/american-classics
Did you try the Ignite Emissary amp? Its free and on the clean channel I've gotten pretty nice cleans, can be overdriven a bit aswell. You can load your own impulses in the NadIr plugin, I have not tried their own impulses that much so that might also be something to consider. The folder symbol in the blue window is the button for that.

I'm mostly playing distorted through the Emissary and it's probably my favourite virtual AMP for that, gonna experiment more with cleanish sounds aswell now that we're talking about it
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Old 07-31-2019, 11:11 AM   #31
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Did you try the Ignite Emissary amp? Its free and on the clean channel I've gotten pretty nice cleans, can be overdriven a bit aswell. You can load your own impulses in the NadIr plugin, I have not tried their own impulses that much so that might also be something to consider. The folder symbol in the blue window is the button for that.

I'm mostly playing distorted through the Emissary and it's probably my favourite virtual AMP for that, gonna experiment more with cleanish sounds aswell now that we're talking about it
Thank you Osse. Yes I have discovered the Emissary amp by Ignite. I am impressed with the clean channel. Working on adding a basic overdrive pedal-sim to the clean channel (on the Emissary amp) combined with the clean channel's own drive setting to obtain a nice overdrive sound (similar to Trey Anastasio, Derek Trucks and Warren Hanes).

Thanks for the information Osse.
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