Hey !
I have an Eleven Rack MIDI recording interface, now when i record my music i usually use presets but i can't find the "Exact" sound that i want and everytime i try and mess with the settings it goes horribly wrong :P
How do you guys learn how to play with the several types of distortion and types of amps and mic simulation and god knows what else . . i'm quite lost.
I don't use the 11R, but for amp simulation I go like this:
Select a basic cabinet impulse (cab + mic simulation). Normally I go to a Mesa 412 Oversize w/SM57 impulse for a modern tone and a Marshall 412 greenback loaded w/HD421 impulse for a more vintage tone.
Then I pick the amp model I want and choose whichever works best initially with the settings flat.
I then go back to the impulse loader and start trying different options.
When I find what I think will work best for what I want, I start adjusting settings.
If I then feel like I need a boost or something, I load a virtual pedalboard and start playing with overdrive pedals.
Delays and all that are usually universal plugins (designed for production in general), but they come in last if needed.

Hope that helps a bit.
If I find what I like, I save my project and keep it as a sort of preset.
It's pretty time consuming, but finding the tone you think is best isn't an easy thing to do.
If I need something quick, I usually just go straight to a preset for the amplification software I use and tweak settings where I think they are necessary.
^Good tone is pretty much all trial and error.
I don't give a shit if you listen to me or not
Quote by fustrun
So it comes absolutly out of the ear ? . . i mean no books on the subject or any guidelines, looks like alot of work to learn it all by trial and error.

Yes, because tone is completely subjective as well.
There are obvious things like having enough mids to cut through and all that, but other than that, it's subjective. What I think sounds good, you might not.
It's complicated since i mostly involve my guitar with soundtrack compositions, and the guitar's role in the tracks vary from track to track, so it's really hard to know what sound would fit best if i don't really know the basics . . i wish there was like an eBook who could help me out . .