Amplitube3: Amps & Cabinets – The Power To Groove
The Amplifiers & Cabinets sections in IK Multimedia’s Amplitube3 provide an ocean of rich resource for sound enhancement and high quality tone colour production. Amplitube3 has an impressive feature set which oozes quality from the get go, supplying no fewer than 31 pre-amps and 46 interchangable cabinet models to choose from. The precise emulation of each of Amplitube’s pre-amps, cabinets and studio modeled microphones surpass expectation both in terms of irresistable sound quality and unique sonic identity.
Pre-Amp Browsing: Categorised into 4 model types: Clean – Crunch – Lead – Bass - the ‘Amps’ section is a seemingly endless goldmine of classic brands for you to bring forward into the mix. In Amplitube’s list of Pre-Amps & Power Amps you will find expertly crafted emulations using IK’s ultra accurate analog modeling DSM™ technology. Graphically, they are beautifully rendered and superbly replicate the interface of popular classic brands, such as: The Mesa Boogie MkIII Combo Clean channel(American Clean MkIII), the Fender Super Reverb Amp (American Tube), Vox AC30 classic (British Blue Tube) and the much sought after sound of the Marshall JCM800 amp (British Tube Lead 1). There are dedicated Bass Amps listed here too, such as: Trace Elliott AH250 GP11 (Green BA250) and the Gallien-Krueger Combo 150MB – Bass Amp. There is so much choice in Amplitube3 – the list goes on and on!
Pre-Amp Signal flow Structure: The signal flow when using the Amp section in Amplitube3, is, for the most part, pre-determined. It begins with a Power On/Off button or switch which is linked to the Amps sections macro Bypass switch. An Amp Model Selector menu is located to the left which provides close proximity browser functionality by listing all the available pre-amp models in a drop down menu. The Amp Tone Dials/EQs are usually allocated the central part of an interface consisting of a bank of rotaries or sliders, controlling: Bass – Middle – Treble – Presence – Distortion – Vibrato e.t.c. these parameters tend to vary depending on the pre-amp model type selected. The signal then passes through the Spring Reverb section usually to the right of the interface. From here the signal path often culminates in a final output stage Master Volume section.
Customisation: The ‘Amp’ & ‘Cab’ sections should be regarded as independent processor stages within Amplitube3 as each section can be bypassed and excluded from the plugin’s processing chain. However, there is a deep vein of processing power to be tapped into when the two sections are combined. Most fundamental to the core design of Amplitube3 is the ability to create multi-faceted custom rigs. The principle of mixing and matching models of one brand with feature sets modeled on other brands, guides the way. IK’s ‘Mix & Match’ design ethic extends to Amplitube’s Pre-Amps, Power Amp Models and most EQ sections. There is also a Match selector which provides a fast route for Amplitube to call up matching Amps – Eqs – Power Amps – according to the settings dialled in. Your custom presets can be saved using the preset panel at the top left of the interface or by right clicking the unit and choosing from the save options there.
Mic Models: Inextricably intertwined under the ‘Cab’ section in Amplitube3 is the remarkable ‘Mic Models’ feature. ‘Mic Models’ fascilitate the positioning of up to two studio modeled microphones across the left/right axis and close/near field position in relation to the cabinet’s centre cone. In keeping with the luxury of Amplitube’s wealthy tone shaping resource, you can choose from a detailed list of: Dynamic – Condensor & Ribbon Mics. When two Mics are loaded they exist as independent items. They can be can be seperately positioned along the axis lines of both parameters, can be adjusted with an independent Mute-Solo- Phase & Pan and mixed together using a Mic blender slider.
Room Section: The ‘Room’ section focuses on creating additional room ambience by allowing the stereo width of two additional Room Mics to be adjusted along a left/right axis in relation to the position of a cabinet in the studio sound stage. For this, Amplitube3 provides a dedicated interactive graphic which allows manual placement of the Room Mics, but you can also dial in the Room Mic positions using the rotaries on the Room adjustment panel bar. To the left of this panel is a drop down menu with a variety of Room Types to choose from: Amp Closet – Small Studio – Mid Studio – Large Studio and Hall. Each Room Type can be customised by adjusting the Width, Pan and Level of the two Room Mics. There is also the option to Mute/Solo a Mic and invert the phase of the Room.
Outro: When you consider the detailed emulation of Amplitube’s 51 Stomp box effects, 31 Amp Models, 46 Cabinets, 15 Studio Modeled Mics, the variety of Room ambiences, 17 Rack effects and a 4 track recorder/player with independent time stretch/pitch shift (Stand-Alone mode); you begin to understand how powerful this software – IK Multimedia’s ‘The King of Tone’ - truly is. Its inherent flexibility and multi-leveled feature set is so deep that it includes many more features, as yet, unmentioned, such as: Voicing filters, switchable Lo-Cut/Hi pass filters, Bright/Deep selector buttons, Contour and Hi boost rotaries and seperate Limiter stages. There are more switchable options to be found in the program’s Preferences too.
It is difficult not to enthuse about Amplitube3 because as a tone shaping production tool it really is that good. It demands attention and deserves attention. It has to be the most comprehensive Guitar and Bass tone gear modeling software available. Period.
Windows and Mac OS X Plug-in and Standalone application
Supported Plug-in formats: Audio Units, VST, RTAS (Mac OS X) – VST, RTAS (Windows)
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A fully functional free version of Amplitube3 is available here…
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