#1
I've been playing around with some amp VSTs (mainly Amplitube 3 and Guitar Rig 5). I can get some great clean tones, but any high gain tone I attempt always sounds harsh and fizzy.

I see guys like Devin Townsend get great tones out of PodFarm, Keith Merrow get great tones out of JamUp, Stephen Carpenter get some nice tones out of Guitar Rig, etc. I've also seen several youtube videos with some decent high gain tones.

What's the secret here? If it matters I'm using a Presonus Audiobox as my interface and monitoring through AKG K240 headphones and KRK Rocket 6 monitors.
#2
It's all about EQ. Make sure you have a low pass somewhere between 8kHz - 12kHz. Also try a narrow Q band reduction around 4kHz and 6kHz.
#4
it's all about Notching using an EQ with a Visual meter makes the job of finding the best place to notch Much easier.

This Tutorial made the most scents to me.

but I found that with a Visual meter helps alot,. the basic's are use a EQ with a Meter showing Pre and post EQ waveform ( I ended up using Waves H-EQ) but if your not in PT land you should be able to get a free VST EQ that does the job.

focus on one tight frequency, max the gain on it and move it up and down until you hear a Whistle sound and see where the largest jump in the peak is in the meter, the EQ gain raises the meter Wave abit as it should BUT at the problem area the Amount it is raised is ALOT more. it's not very pleasing to the ears holes at all BUT you will find the problem frequency.

once found KILL IT or reduce it as much as you need to keep the tone you want.

you find some around 7-9 k area 99% of the time and sometimes there's one in the low end, the low end one is really funky, easy to find when there, but you notice a Nice improvement when you cut it alittle.

OH and you should always kill the Highs and the lows with a shelf so you know what space the guitars lives in the mix.

when EQing the whole band you need to give each instrument is own space in the EQ the hard job is when Bass is near the same area as drums, the toms and cymbals run in to Guitar and Singer and the Guitar and singer are in the sort of same area,. BUT that's the art of mixing

Good luck
Last edited by T4D at May 22, 2013,
#5
Also make sure that when you load them in your DAW, use cab impulses. It gets rid of some of the fizz as well.
#6
Quote by Garlic Owl
Also make sure that when you load them in your DAW, use cab impulses. It gets rid of some of the fizz as well.

Nope. The cab impulse just makes it sound like the tone is coming out of a speaker, instead of a noisy mess. You're expected to have a cab sim in there anyway. In fact, a lot of the fizz comes from the IR itself.
An IR has a frequency response (how much of each frequency it'll let through), and usually that response has spikes at certain frequencies (2.2kHz is one that I've heard in some professionally-produced albums!), caused by resonance in the speakers in the cabinet. The mass and elasticity of the speaker bell cause sympathetic vibrations at a certain frequency, which shows up as a shrill-sounding spike in the frequency response. And since most IRs are sampled from real cabinets, they have these spikes too. The best way to deal with these is to drill them out with a parametric EQ.
I'm an engineering major, and I just took system dynamics.
#7
HeadCase has an inbuilt fizz killer... but since the main HeadCase amp distribution network got shut down by it's crazy owner that thing is kinda dead in the water sadly.

Shame, was a great amp sim.
All I want is for everyone to go to hell...
...It's the last place I was seen before I lost myself



Quote by DisarmGoliath
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#8
Quote by ChemicalFire
HeadCase has an inbuilt fizz killer... but since the main HeadCase amp distribution network got shut down by it's crazy owner that thing is kinda dead in the water sadly.

Shame, was a great amp sim.

Really? I didn't know that. I never warmed to Headcase as much as the older freeware AcmeBarGig heads but that's a real shame. I always thought they needed to get some better promotion though.


I agree 100% on low-passing guitars. You can go to extremes as low as 5k if you want dark guitars that blend pretty far back in the mix, or go for a more conservative cut (10-12kz often doe the trick) to remove fatiguing sizzle and fizz that adds nothing to the tone. I generally end up low-passing at around 8-9k on heavy rock mixes, it pulls everything together nicely.

EDIT: I'm only talking about your generic 'meaty hard rock crunch' kinda tones here, I treat cleaner or more dynamic guitars very differently. Don't go lowpassing a funky clean strat at 5k if you want to be hired again!
Last edited by kyle62 at May 26, 2013,
#9
Yeah, it's just a knob that I assume adds an EQ drop at the most common fizz points.

If you were talking about the Crazyness, the guy who ran the site that hosted all the amps was't part of the Headcase company and he just went weird and caused lots of drama. He ended up deleting his site.

There might well be a new site that hosts lots of headcase stuff, but I've honestly not checked.
All I want is for everyone to go to hell...
...It's the last place I was seen before I lost myself



Quote by DisarmGoliath
You can be the deputy llamma of the recordings forum!
Last edited by ChemicalFire at May 26, 2013,
#10
Quote by Cavalcade
Nope. The cab impulse just makes it sound like the tone is coming out of a speaker, instead of a noisy mess. You're expected to have a cab sim in there anyway. In fact, a lot of the fizz comes from the IR itself.
An IR has a frequency response (how much of each frequency it'll let through), and usually that response has spikes at certain frequencies (2.2kHz is one that I've heard in some professionally-produced albums!), caused by resonance in the speakers in the cabinet. The mass and elasticity of the speaker bell cause sympathetic vibrations at a certain frequency, which shows up as a shrill-sounding spike in the frequency response. And since most IRs are sampled from real cabinets, they have these spikes too. The best way to deal with these is to drill them out with a parametric EQ.
I'm an engineering major, and I just took system dynamics.


gotcha, I was just going off of something that I had just tried out that I thought sounded good. I would load Amplitube into my DAW and rather than turning off the cab sim in Amplitube, I'd leave it on but then I'd run it through an IR (LAconvolver) and that would get rid of some of the fizziness. I'm a biology major and know nothing about the technical side of guitar tone
#11
Quote by kyle62
Really? I didn't know that. I never warmed to Headcase as much as the older freeware AcmeBarGig heads but that's a real shame. I always thought they needed to get some better promotion though.

Yeah, Richard went nuts, Ken handled it poorly, and it all resulted in the VAS being shut down then revived as a forum. They're trying to fix it all, and the amps are all available now on ABG's own amp stash but I just couldn't be bothered with it any more, too much drama.
#12
Quote by Garlic Owl
gotcha, I was just going off of something that I had just tried out that I thought sounded good. I would load Amplitube into my DAW and rather than turning off the cab sim in Amplitube, I'd leave it on but then I'd run it through an IR (LAconvolver) and that would get rid of some of the fizziness. I'm a biology major and know nothing about the technical side of guitar tone

Think of it this way, instead of dissecting frogs and rats, you're dissecting sound here.

@TS:
I generally do a low pass at 8k for Metal. I would mess around with your low pass. If you're doing something like alt rock, you'll find you want your low pass around probably the 12k range. So, mess around until you lose that fizziness. Also, if I would try to add surgical cuts at around 3k and 4k or even 4k and 5k, depending upon the VST. I get good results with a cut at 3k and 4k, using LePou amps and LeCab2.
#13
If your using inserts then you could EQ before and after you amp sim, get your guitar tone sounding pretty before it hits the sim. While they usually have fizz anyway, it becomes more noticeable the hard you start pushing it. Remember that most real guitar cabs have trouble with anything above 10k, so you don't want that information there.