#1
Hello everyone,

I have been playing guitar for almost 4 years and I decided to get a new gear. I am completely out of touch with guitar gear world and I am looking for someone to help me out. My amp is really outdated and doesn't satisfy my needs anymore.

My current gear:
- Spear RF-150 RT 66 guitar
- Spider III 30W

I play guitar at home only. I am into GnR, Metallica, Megadeth, Nirvana, Pink Floyd, AC/DC, Guthrie Govan, Hendrix. I like to record my stuff and experiment with different tones and styles. I play with and without heaphones (50\50). I want to get into home recording and I want my gear to get as close as possible to the original sound of my musical influences. I have been searching on the internet for some modelling amps but I am not completely sure what I need in my case.

I would like to get a new pair of headphones and good practice amp. My budget is 450$-500$
Things I have found so far:
- Amps: Yamaha THR10X / Yamaha THR10 / Line 6 Spider 5 / Fender Mustang III / Vyper Tube 60
- Headphones: really don't know where to begin

I look forward to hearing your thoughts
#2
Vypyr tube 60 would be my choice from your list for the music you play. It is far better than the others for heavy stuff. You may still be left wanting though as you have pretty specific wants. A modeling setup like the Pod & quality headphones might deliver better tones within your budget. You could add powered monitors or a FRFR powered wedge to make noise live but it sounds like you don't ever play out so that may not be necessary. Most guitar amps are designed to get loud and play live. You don't have to use them that way but that is their purpose.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis
#3
Cajundaddy Thank you for your replay! I haven't had any experience with Pod and I really don't know if it will suit me. My 30 Watt amp is really too loud to practice with and I have never turned the volume all the way up so the Vypyr tube 60 seems like an overkill.

I have watched a lot of demos of Yamaha THR10X recently and it seems like a pefect peace of gear for me. Are there any alternatives that let me record and change my tone with my PC, have speakers so I can choose to play without headphones? I would love to have a simple way to record and I would really like to have a wide range of 'settings' to choose from.
#4
Rokzero Avoid Line 6 and Peavey, the others are fine. Get very small wattage - I have a 5 watt Roland Micro Cube that is more than loud enough for practicing and even jamming if the drummer is playing with brushes. My usual amp is a 30 watt Mesa Lonestar tube amp, which is obviously way better than the Roland, but for quiet practice the Roland is more than usable. So, if your getting a modelling amp, low wattage is fine and honestly a better bargain. The Yamaha seems great and I would probably go for that over the others.

As for headphones, get something mid-range from Audio Technica or Sennheiser - don't get wireless ! I would strongly suggest buying online during black friday sales - I got a $500 pair of Sennheisers for $130 last year on Amazon. You want the large ear muff type headphones - they will sit better on your head and be more comfortable to play for long periods.
#5
Quote by Rokzero
Cajundaddy Thank you for your replay! I haven't had any experience with Pod and I really don't know if it will suit me. My 30 Watt amp is really too loud to practice with and I have never turned the volume all the way up so the Vypyr tube 60 seems like an overkill.

I have watched a lot of demos of Yamaha THR10X recently and it seems like a pefect peace of gear for me. Are there any alternatives that let me record and change my tone with my PC, have speakers so I can choose to play without headphones? I would love to have a simple way to record and I would really like to have a wide range of 'settings' to choose from.


A Pod (XT, HD500, etc.) or similar allows you an extremely wide range of sounds well beyond anything the THR10X offers. While it seems obvious that you're just looking for validation for a Yamaha purchase in this thread, you may want to consider a dedicated modeler instead. These are excellent for recording, obviously, and all have a headphone output. If you're recording, you may want to consider getting a good pair of powered studio monitors. These usually have a much greater frequency range than do the speakers in a THR10X and are designed for nearfield (6-8' listening) use.

My usual murderer's row of headphones includes studio standbys Sony 7506, AKG 240, Sennheiser 280, BeyerDynamic 770 and AT50s. No exaggerated bass, comfortable wearing, clean sound. Virtually any professional studio you walk into will have one of these hanging on the wall. These represent a sweet spot of studio-quality sound reproduction and cost.
#6
reverb66 Thank you for your advice! Unfortunately I will not be able to benefit from Black Friday Sale because I live in EU. Are these type of headphones also good for just listening to the music? I know my budget is not really that big but will I be able to get a good pair of headphones for ~150$ that will serve me more than a year? What are the most important thing I should look for when buying headphones?
#7
Quote by dspellman
A Pod (XT, HD500, etc.) or similar allows you an extremely wide range of sounds well beyond anything the THR10X offers. While it seems obvious that you're just looking for validation for a Yamaha purchase in this thread, you may want to consider a dedicated modeler instead. These are excellent for recording, obviously, and all have a headphone output. If you're recording, you may want to consider getting a good pair of powered studio monitors. These usually have a much greater frequency range than do the speakers in a THR10X and are designed for nearfield (6-8' listening) use.

My usual murderer's row of headphones includes studio standbys Sony 7506, AKG 240, Sennheiser 280, BeyerDynamic 770 and AT50s. No exaggerated bass, comfortable wearing, clean sound. Virtually any professional studio you walk into will have one of these hanging on the wall. These represent a sweet spot of studio-quality sound reproduction and cost.


Thank you for your replay! It may seem obvious that I am looking for a conformation of my assumptions but it is only because I really have little experience in this field so the first thing I saw seems to be the best choice for now. That is why I am looking for advice here. Do I need to buy some additional stuff or is Pod just plug and play (assuming I have a pair of headphones)?
#8
Quote by Rokzero
Thank you for your replay! It may seem obvious that I am looking for a conformation of my assumptions but it is only because I really have little experience in this field so the first thing I saw seems to be the best choice for now. That is why I am looking for advice here. Do I need to buy some additional stuff or is Pod just plug and play (assuming I have a pair of headphones)?


Plug Pod into wall, guitar into pod, earphones into Pod.

Here's the caution, the glitch, the gotcha: you'll probably not find a lot of the user presets to your liking. I didn't. They're there mostly to demo the unit. You should be able to pull up several YouTube and online .pdf guides to help you tweak tones you really like. Spend a little time doing that and learning the unit and you'll be amazed at what it can do. 90% of the folks who have NOT liked the Pods didn't do that. Others, however, have recorded entire albums with the things and use them professionally on a nightly basis.
#9
dspellman Thanks for your reply. What is `the wall`? Can I plug the pod into my computer and tweak its settings on it? Does Pod come with recording software?
#10
The wall where the power plug is that you'll be using a DC cord
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
#12
Rokzero Any headphones from Audio Technica or Sennheiser will do fine - get the large earmuff type headphones ( because they are more comfortable and sound better - avoid bluetooth or wireless headphones.
Last edited by reverb66 at Nov 6, 2016,
#13
Quote by Rokzero
Can I plug the pod into my computer and tweak its settings on it? Does Pod come with recording software?


How do you feel about using your computer and software instead of an amp?
Something likes this http://uk.line6.com/pod-studio/ux1 would give you amp and pedal simulation, as well as recording/editing software. http://www.ikmultimedia.com/products/irighda/ and their other products let you connect and record on mobile phones/ tablets as well as computers; https://www.positivegrid.com/bias-fx/ works with computers and iPads.

Quote by Rokzero
Unfortunately I will not be able to benefit from Black Friday Sale because I live in EU.


A lot of online retailers in the UK have started doing Black Friday sales, so some in your country might too.
#14
Just a thought on headphones. My tech mates at the local music store suggested that lo-fi headphones would sound more like a speaker than hi-fi ones, so I bought a set of cheap Ashton electric drum headphones. They work fine, "more" isn't always the same as "better".
#15
Quote by Tony Done
Just a thought on headphones. My tech mates at the local music store suggested that lo-fi headphones would sound more like a speaker than hi-fi ones, so I bought a set of cheap Ashton electric drum headphones. They work fine, "more" isn't always the same as "better".


No way...wouldn't go that route at all.
#16
Quote by diabolical
No way...wouldn't go that route at all.

Ditto that.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!


alhaq369
It is very impotent to success a business.
#17
luke.g.henderso It looks really cool. Do I need to buy different types of hardware for my guitar to connect to different recording software? Can I use line6 Pod Studio for example to work with Bias FX? Does it sound as good as recording directly from an amp? It looks like it has everything I need, I just hope it is not very expensive to get a good sound and simple recording software.
#18
Rokzero There are a lot of different interfaces, and they should usually be compatible with most software. I have Cubase and a Steinberg/ Cubase interface, and inside that I've used the amp/ pedal software it came with, Pod Farm, Amplitube, Audified software, and free (but good) amp sims by LePou and others.

I've also combined stuff, running a head sim from one through a cab from another.

Quote by Rokzero
Does it sound as good as recording directly from an amp?


Does it sound as good as $2000+ of amp, cabinet, and mic? Probably not. But it probably sounds as good as spending the same money on an amp.

A POD Studio and some flat response headphones will let you plug your guitar into the computer and record, and get a range of good sounds. Also, you can go back and change the sound of the guitar afterwards without having to play again. Plus, I think you can just load up the POD software on its own without Cubase if you want to play guitar without recording.

You won't have the option of taking the POD Studio elsewhere like a normal POD, but the trade-off is that it integrates better with the computer, and you can get things like microphone inputs too.

Other interfaces from other manufacturers (Focusrite, etc) will probably have light versions of DAWs (recording software), if you don't want POD Farm.

Also, Reaper is a very respected DAW, and only $60 from http://www.reaper.fm/purchase.php
#19
Rokzero You need:

1) an audio interface - Focusrite, Tascam, Steinberg etc. - they're all decent now, so just find one within budget that has the features you want;
2) a DAW : Get Reaper, it's like $60, and it is a full featured DAW that runs very well on PC or Mac. It is much better than any "Lite" version of other software. On PC it's probably the best running program out of all of them, including Cubase and Pro Tools, as far as CPU efficiency goes. So if you have a mediocre computer - Reaper is THE Daw to get.
3) Bias - is a great amp sim and you will get decent results if you use it, once you learn how to mix properly. A great amp in a great room miced will sound better, but you have none of those things so you will get better results with Bias.
#20
Quote by reverb66
Rokzero You need:

1) an audio interface - Focusrite, Tascam, Steinberg etc. - they're all decent now, so just find one within budget that has the features you want;
2) a DAW : Get Reaper, it's like $60, and it is a full featured DAW that runs very well on PC or Mac. It is much better than any "Lite" version of other software. On PC it's probably the best running program out of all of them, including Cubase and Pro Tools, as far as CPU efficiency goes. So if you have a mediocre computer - Reaper is THE Daw to get.
3) Bias - is a great amp sim and you will get decent results if you use it, once you learn how to mix properly. A great amp in a great room miced will sound better, but you have none of those things so you will get better results with Bias.


Thanks a lot guys! Now I pretty much know how my setup is gonna look like. I guess I can find out on my own what software I need so that is settled. I just haven't decided on 2 things:
- Are flat response headphones also good for just listening to the music? I know there is no universal solution possible but I am trying to get the headphones I can use for different purposes. (I think I am going to get Sennheiser HD 280)
- Audio Interfaces are really complicated and I really don't know how to pick one that suits me. I have seen that a lot people are bashing Line 6 for their stuff so I am not certain about Pod Studio anymore...
#21
From a computer software perspective I like Peavey ReValver and their new profiling features look nice but I haven't used it that part yet. The interface is very intuitive and ReValver is a stand alone program so you don't have to fire up a DAW (like Reaper) and then load a track/preset that's using the amp simulation program. You can run ReValver via the DAW when you record however.

Most of the new mini amps have recording capabilities built into them if you want an actual tube amp and then use the computer for effects. The Laney IronHeart Studio should be able to get the tones you want or at least most of them.
Guitars:
Jackson Kelly KE3 - MIJ (Distortion/Jazz)
Jackson DKMGT Dinky (EMG 81/85)
ESP E-II Eclipse Custom (JB/'59)
ESP LTD EC-1001FR (EMG 81/60)

Amps:
Mesa Dual Rec Roadster 212
Peavey 5150 212 with V30s
Peavey Vypyr 30
Peavey ReValver
#22
Most interfaces will be fine. If you're serious about recording, flat response headphones would be better.
#23
OP, lots of freeware options for amp and impulse response, check the Recording forum stickies.
My personal favorite is NadIR and Kalthallen free impulses, for amps you can check LePou, Nick Criw Labs, etc. So all you'll need is a software to liad these vsts and go from there. If you pick interface they usually come with something to get started.

Headphones - I'd say you can't go wrong with DT-770 for recording and listening. AKG 240 MKII are great for recording but mayve a bit too uninteresting for listening, although that would be my 2nd recommendation.

Btw, the THR line by Yamaha is also great for your needs, so don't let me stop you from getting one.
#24
Sorry for late replay but I was really busy the past two weeks. There are a couple of questions I have left after my research:
- Can you record 'wet' sound with software amp simulators/impulses + recording software without noticeable delay?
- Is Pod 500hdx better than software alternatives? I have heard a lot of good things about Bias, but 90% of it is obviously paid endorsement.
#25
Quote by Rokzero
Sorry for late replay but I was really busy the past two weeks. There are a couple of questions I have left after my research:
- Can you record 'wet' sound with software amp simulators/impulses + recording software without noticeable delay?
- Is Pod 500hdx better than software alternatives? I have heard a lot of good things about Bias, but 90% of it is obviously paid endorsement.
1. I think it would depend on what software in particular. I only have experience with BIAS, and I thought the latency at reasonable bit rates was okay to work with, but not something I would ideally want to record or play live with- although I am used to physical tube amps so I may be... biased...

2. I would say so, just comparing the prices should give you that idea. BIAS Amps can get some really solid tones, but you will want to get FX too to integrate with it as Amps has no real "effects". A used POD HD500 may be a better option for you as you do not need to get an Audio Interface as well, and I think the tones will be arguably better.
Last edited by Will Lane at Nov 18, 2016,
#26
The more you load the pc the bigger the latency, so it is not a perfect system. I'd say with a top notch PC you could probably squeeze about 4-6 milliseconds of delay on the response.

The more effects and processing you put the slower it is bound to get.
#27
I have a pretty decent pc, but I am afraid I won't be able to freely tweak my sound while playing without getting noticeable delay. I guess 4-6 ms is not a big problem... Just don't like the idea of recording something when you can't even hear your real tone.
#28
I just use one of these and a wedge for practice (I gig with it too)
http://atomicamps.com/amplifire-pedal/
It doesn't have an audio interface built in, I just use an old Tascam US-200 for recording
Gilchrist custom
Yamaha SBG500
Telecasters
Randall RM100 & RM20
Marshall JTM45 clone
Marshall JCM900 4102 (modded)
Marshall 18W clone
Fender 5F1 Champ clone
Atomic Amplifire
Marshall 1960A
Boss GT-100


Cathbard Amplification
My band