Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups Warmoth.com

Downsides to modeling amps?

Discussion in 'Modeling Amps, Plugins and Apps' started by AndreasBrown, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. bparnell57

    bparnell57 Poster Extraordinaire

    Feb 10, 2014
    Philadelphia, PA

    Mercury Magnetics transformers are simply higher quality transformers in many cases and they are often tweaked in their designs to be better suited for the amps they're going into. If you put a properly designed output transformer in a silverface Princeton that sounds flubby when it's on 10, a MM transformer may certainly help, because most guitar amp transformers are weak. Now the stock transformers sound great in tons of amps, but everyone has a flavor. Quality is often associated with louder or deeper sounding. It's a proven fact that cars with heavier doors are perceived as more valuable, so imports are designed to be louder than necessary when you close the door.

    Also, just wondering, does anyone have any experience with the Kempler Profiler amps? They sound like incredibly innovative technology but it takes some great trust or experience to throw that kind of money on a modeling amp. Is it really that good at what it does?
     

  2. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

    Sep 18, 2011
    los angeles
    Most do, yes. But like anything else they all do it to a different degree. Some extremely well, some not well at all and everything in between. The M does it extremely well and also has great touch dynamics which i think is part and parcel of how well the guitar volume cleans up like in that video.
     

  3. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

    Sep 18, 2011
    los angeles
    People seem to love them and i'm sure they're good. But someone here said they know someone with them and has played thru it and found his mustang does just as well for producing great tone. The main differences are things beyond that like the fact you can profile other amps so theres no limit to what you can do with it. If your goal is to have many tones and mimic certain amps, i don't think the mustang can come close. If like me and apparently a good percentage of others here and just need one great tone, the mustang will likely do that as well as anything. If you are into trying to nail exact tones of popular brands/models, the kemper is probably the best bet by far tho you will pay 5-7 times that of a MIII for a head.
     

  4. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    341
    Oct 18, 2014
    NY


    Did you listen to the shootout on the classic tone website? Could you not hear the MM transformer was warmer and thicker than the others? Did you not hear the same difference in the other two clips I posted?

    If warm and thick isn't your thing, thats fine. However pretending the difference is not there is willful ignorance.

    Also many of the high end of professional builders seems to rave about Mercury transformers. Makers like Redplate, Gries, Voodoo, Fargen, etc. The builders are selling $$$$ amps to professionals. They choose the transformer that sounds the best, not what saves them a few bucks. I guess they hear a difference too.
     

  5. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

    Sep 18, 2011
    los angeles
    You believe what you want. I've done things to amp design that made them sound thicker than you've likely ever heard only to find in a band mix it was utterly useless and buried. Besides, listening to video demos is as informative in judging tone as it would be in judging taste by watching someone eat 2 brands of pizza in a video and deciding based on that. It's all but totally useless. The fact that you are listening to videos and making judgments based on that tells me theres no way you're going to understand so i'll leave it at that. Spend years designing amp circuits then we'll talk. Till then you just aren't going to understand because you can't possibly. The fact you judge based on videos tells me that much. In short, transformers are not what will make or break and amp. Tubes make 10x the difference. No disrespect intended, but it's the truth.

    Also, MM is renown for thier BS propoganda, well known by builders. It's almost like a running joke in the community.

     

  6. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    341
    Oct 18, 2014
    NY

    Actually I do study electronics so if you care to go into detail I can certainly hang with you.

    I agree NOS tubes make a big difference as well.

    What is so uninformative about listening to clips posted by people? Keep in mind I have 15+ years of studio experience and certainly know how to judge listening examples. Why on classic tones own website shootout does the MM sound the best?

    Who are these builders who think MM are all propaganda? Who are they selling amps to? Because the names I listed are some of the best in the biz, especially Redplate.
     

  7. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

    Sep 18, 2011
    los angeles
    Ok, you win. transformers will transform an amp. case closed. Not the thread topic anyways. Thats about an amp you have lots of experience with right?
     

  8. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    341
    Oct 18, 2014
    NY

    Oh I see, now that you know I understand electronics, you back away from your stance.

    Some people accept mediocrity, others strive for the best. If saving a few bucks at the cost of tone is ok with you, thats cool. I don't feel that way.
     

  9. fender4life

    fender4life Friend of Leo's

    Sep 18, 2011
    los angeles
    No, i'm just tired of arguing with you when i see a lot of what you say from a point of experience you don't have. how many amps have YOU built and how much time have you spent on them. And you listen to a video and believe that tells the story?! Then you see a video of the mustang where literally the vast majority of comments were by people saying they guessed wrong as to which was the real BF and which was the mustang and whats your response...."well, the guys is biased and made sure the mustang sounded better" or some such nonsense. (paraphrasing)

    So no, i'm not backing off because you know so much. I'm backing off because you don't and won't listen. I'm done...
     

  10. vintagelove

    vintagelove Tele-Meister

    341
    Oct 18, 2014
    NY

    Ok, I will make this my last response as we have certainly hijacked the thread.

    While I have not built an amp myself, I have experience modding circuits (in recording equipment), including on a console that cost more than all your music equipment combined. I have also done tests on the effect of different transformers in a circuit. And unlike you, I record the differences between these tests on the highest end equipment, then listen to it on high end studio monitors. You swapped a transformer once, listened to it a half hour later, and think that is a better measurement than actually recording the outcome and analyzing it afterword?

    The effect a transformer has on a circuit is a large one. You are the first "engineer" I have ever hear deny that fact. So you are by far in the minority. Perhaps your ears are not good enough to detect the differences? The amp companies I listed all sell a lot more amps than you ever will, and they think the MM iron sounds great. I think I will trust their ears over yours. Oh yeah, and the recordings which demonstrate that as well.

    I referenced an audio recording from your favorite transformer company, where the MM sounded the best, you still won't comment on that recording. The videos I posted demonstrated the same phenomena. Meanwhile you reference a video by a guy who can't get a DR to sound better than a $30 joyo pedal???

    You are the one that said the mustang cleans sound like crap, not me.
     

  11. TwangyWhammy

    TwangyWhammy Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 10, 2014
    Under the DownUnder
    Same here.

    But the same can be said for any amp, not just the Mustang.

    One way I have found useful is to go into the Utilities Menu and scroll down until you can switch-on the "preset lock." Once locked, any dial changes made (deliberate or accidental) to the presets can't be saved. So you can rest assured that you can confidently switch to the next channel then switch back again and you'll be back to where you were before - you DON'T need to move any of the altered dials back to their previous positions.

    All the other dials can be pointing all at ten or all at zero, makes no difference. Once you switch to another preset and back again, all the dial settings of that preset will revert back to its original programming - regardless of where the dials happen to be physically pointing.

    The only parameter that will directly relate to where it's actually pointed physically is the Master Volume dial. The master volume level is always ACTUAL and never goes into the programming.

    Of course before you 'lock' your presets, it's better to already establish the desired sound you want from a prior full band rehearsal at the volume levels you intend to play live.
     

  12. tele salivas

    tele salivas Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 5, 2008
    Tulsa
    I can see a few years ago saying modeling amps have a ways to go before they sound anywhere near as good as a tube amp, but these amps have come a long way in the last 3 or 4 years. Now there is a diverse field in quality of modelers, at least enough a range to compete with tube or SS amps. It's not a matter of convenience or function trumping sound quality- it's a matter of not settling, and getting it all.
     

  13. Drubbing

    Drubbing Friend of Leo's

    I understand where you're coming from. but really, if Shane's vids aren't good enough for you (and are deemed agenda driven), but some poorly recorded handy cam vid featuring a BF you love, tells you all you need to know about the difference, I'm not sure what else to say.

    Except perhaps go into a store with an open mind and check one out?

    Unlike vintage BFs, they're pretty easy to find.
     

  14. soulman969

    soulman969 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Mar 20, 2011
    Englewood, CO
    Originally Posted by fender4life View Post

    No, i'm just tired of arguing with you when i see a lot of what you say from a point of experience you don't have. how many amps have YOU built and how much time have you spent on them. And you listen to a video and believe that tells the story?! Then you see a video of the mustang where literally the vast majority of comments were by people saying they guessed wrong as to which was the real BF and which was the mustang and whats your response...."well, the guys is biased and made sure the mustang sounded better" or some such nonsense. (paraphrasing)

    So no, i'm not backing off because you know so much. I'm backing off because you don't and won't listen. I'm done...




    That'll be the day. :rolleyes:

    If that was the case this thead would have died a natural death long ago. LOL
     

  15. pondcaster

    pondcaster Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    52
    Nov 29, 2010
    Tryon, NC
    And our entertainment, too!
     

  16. TwangyWhammy

    TwangyWhammy Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 10, 2014
    Under the DownUnder
    Agreed… it's a shame that the newer and better modellers are still being judged unheard, based on previous offerings which did in fact fall short in terms of being warm and responsive musically. And even if they get even better than they already are now - which they will (by leaps and bounds one can expect) - modellers would still be viewed with distain simply because it's merits aren't derived in a particular way.

    This opinion will be around for many more years to come… until the day when truly great and highly respected guitarists begin to use modellers live. Perhaps it may never happen... or it's only a matter of time - but should this happen tomorrow, I don't think music has nothing much to loose and only everything to gain.
     

  17. Jim Dep

    Jim Dep Friend of Leo's

    May 23, 2010
    Northern Colorado
    I'm sorry for being rude.

    With an amp from years past, while performing, you wouldn't have any presets to tweak while you're onstage. There would be no way to save anything, so what you do instead is take notes on what changes you make with all your knob settings.

    I suggest using the footswitch just for FX pedals and not for changing presets.

    I approach the Mustang III as an actual set of amps, instead of a menu of presets. I started off creating a bunch of presets for about the 1st year I had it, but I've found that I've gotten better and more consistent results since then by treating it as the amp it represents.

    Regardless of the band setup area, I'd never let anyone I didn't know have access to my gear. I would really not like to have to spend my breaks guarding my equipment, but if that was the case, then I'd do it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2015

  18. Jim Dep

    Jim Dep Friend of Leo's

    May 23, 2010
    Northern Colorado

    You came up with about a $1600 difference between the Mustang III and the
    Vintage BF amp where you live.

    I forgot to mention that we need to add the cost of FX pedals to that $1600.

    :eek:

    Did any of us Mustang owners expect the amp to sound exactly like the prototype?
    Am I disappointed because it's not as ...warm...as a tube amp
    that costs $1600 more? NO.

    I'm surprised my $200 Mustang III can sound as warm as it does.
    I'm surprised it does a lot of tones really well,
    and has a variety of usable, quality effects.

    Did anyone have unrealistic expectations that it would sound
    just as good as a $1000+ tube amp?

    With some time invested, it can sound pretty darn close though....:)
    I'm happy. Money well spent.


    So, what about the downside of tube amps?
     

  19. Drubbing

    Drubbing Friend of Leo's

    You're kidding. I meant an everyday RI. I couldn't find a single original BF on any classified or online retailers in the whole country.
     

  20. Jim Dep

    Jim Dep Friend of Leo's

    May 23, 2010
    Northern Colorado
    No, I wasn't kidding, just not thinking it through when I posted. :p
     

IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.