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Discussion in 'Modeling Amps, Plugins and Apps' started by Headless Axeman, Oct 22, 2020.
You can also get the 3” 2watt cab to make a mini stack.... it also sounds way better than it should
OP here. Thanks for all of the input. It has sent me off to learn a lot more about these options, which is something that I probably knew I needed to do anyhow. So it was good to light a little fire under me.
For my own clarity, and for the benefit of any other complete newbies seeing this, I thought I'd summarize the response. I'm seeing generally three suggestions:
1. A different modeling amp like the Micro Cube or Katana
2. Playing through my computer with an audio interface and Garageband
3. A couple other standalone solutions, like the Iridium, Katana Air headphones, and the Amplug series
Aside from those specific gear suggestions (as well as the recommendation to invest in some decent headphones), there were a couple pieces of advice along the lines of "dude, you just have to work on this stuff and learn it."
And really, I think that is my takeaway here. Like I said in the first post, I'm not a gear geek, and not especially technical at all, but I do need to figure out how to find the tones I'm looking for. The big issue for me is that my time is so limited that when I spend "guitar time" without a guitar in my hands making music, it feels like I'm just not making the best use of my time. But I need to change my outlook on that.
Moving forward, this is my plan: 1) I'm going to dedicate a couple of practice sessions in the next week or two just to dialing in a handful of tones that I really dig from my THR. The THR has 5 favorite slots (that I always unintentionally delete), so I'll save those there, but I'll also dedicate a page or two in my notebook to writing out the exact settings of each favorite tone. 2) While recording has always been a "one day" idea for me, the praise for Garageband has convinced me to dive into that. I'm going to go ahead and pick up a less expensive audio interface--maybe the Focusrite Scarlett Solo?--and start working with that (which also means spending time dialing in favorite amp sounds in Garageband). 3) Not immediately, but at some point I WILL get the Iridium, or a device like it. I spent waaaaaay too much time today watching Iridium review videos (on Sweetwater, and the Pedal Show, etc.), and it truly does look so simple and so functional, and the 9 amp/cab sounds cover a lot of the sounds that I'd like to be making. I'm trying to take it slow, but I'm guessing that the GAS will get to me pretty quickly. 4) Eventually become a gear nerd and fill a spare closet in my house with a couple dozen pedals that I don't even use anymore.
OK, so questions: First, did I get the above right, and does the plan seem decent? Second, with Garageband, does anyone use it exclusively with an Ipad? The MacBook Air can't be 100% dedicated to guitar at this point, so I'm wondering if getting one of the smaller Ipads dedicated for that use would work. Third, I'm seeing that the Iridium works straight through from guitar-->Iridium-->headphones. In that basic configuration, is there a way to get aux input into the Iridium (for backing tracks, etc.)? (Understanding that I'd probably usually end up using it in a chain going into the computer, so could obviously get the aux in other ways).
Congrats, bud! I also have #2 on the way in January. I'm hoping to just keep the guitar as some small part of my life for the next year or so. Another reason why simplicity is king for me right now. Good luck.
Will do, and I appreciate the Garageband guide. Will be referring back to it going forward.
Dude, this has me drooling...
I actually have the AC30 version. It is a lot of fun. I usually use it for playing in other spots around the house than my usual basement corner. Usually when I'm on the couch with the tv on. I like it a lot, but don't think its a full time solution at this point.
No offense taken. I clearly don't know thing one about this stuff. And yeah, I think I was hoping that there was some secret, really easy solution that I hadn't come across before, but now I see that isn't the case. I'll do the work.
I have the first THR10(C version) - I've never plugged it in to USB or used an app with it. I always just use the Deluxe or the AC30 model, and turn a knob to get delay and / or tremolo. I don't love ANY headphone tones I have ever heard, so I don't expect it to sound awesome. But it's workable for late night practice.
There are a million headphone friendly options out there, but it sounds like you already have one...
Possibly consider a Boss GT series, everything you need for playing live or in the bedroom. The Garage Band idea makes sense, your backup band is right there and all the sounds one could want are available. It really depends on the desired outcome, do you want to play better or explore tones and options (and there is nothing wrong with either). I have an older TH and it can be cool but I don't always find it inspiring and often just play unplugged.
For me, it is 88% want to be a better player, and 12% want to get great tones. And I don’t want to spend a ton of time going down the rabbit hole trying to find the right tones. I’m basically trying to find the best tone per minute spent searching for it, if that makes sense.
The Yamaha is definitely a pretty good piece of gear. Might be best off finding 5 tones you'll use, saving them, and boom, now it's easy!
Benefits of the thr are that you have the monitors built in. - I just had to spend another $400 on monitors for my Iridium. You can easily go direct into a daw - which I believe they gave you for free with purchase. Plus you can take it to the back yard or cabin and use batteries. That's cool! And it has an aux in for jamming (or playing Spotify at said cabin). And... You already have it!
I have a focus rite Scarlett solo. It's great! I have a chrome book, so I'm stuck with audacity as my software. But it's a good one to learn on I think, and does what it does well. Just a bit clunky to use.
You definitely want to ask yourself if the single XLR and single 1/4 are sufficient. Sometimes I wish I had 2 XLR in... I'm a vocalist as well, a terrible one.
Invest in headphones. Money well spent whichever direction you go. Audio Technica and Sennheiser have good stuff in the $100 to $300 range. Think about whether you want open or closed back. Ideally you have both. But your headphone experience on the Yamaha, and especially the Iridium will depend on the quality of your cans. Try to keep the impedance under 50, unless you wanna get an external dac/amp.
The Iridium is a very nice piece of gear. But it's a bit of a rabbit hole to connect. And it's maybe 10 to 20% better sounding than the Yamaha. And at times, I miss the versatility of the Yamaha. Built in effects are handy. Just very different tools. The difference with the Iridium is I see myself using it live in certain situations.
Congrats and good luck. Enjoy!
IMO if you're just playing guitar, Rocksmith cables work fine.
I use both iPad and Mac version, but I've recently looked at this and got the iPad version set up. Aforementioned Rocksmith cable + CCK. The iPad GarageBand has Drummer now, and is functionally close enough to Mac for everything I need.
Good for you for thinking about this in advance!
There are players who are really interested in one type of music, and they're the lead player in their band, and that's what they do. For them it makes sense to figure out which of two similar overdrives is better and how they interact with different amps and like that.
For me, I'm in this for fun and can just do whatever silliness I feel like. I play a few different instruments and lots of different styles. I'm trying to learn to play lead guitar better. I sing. I am doing home recordings with others online during 2020, and I gig (or did and plan to again) solo acoustic and in an electric trio where I'm the guitar and vocals. GB's amp and pedal simulators are fine for my needs and when we gig electric again, the TC Play Electric works fine.
I've been using this setup while my practice room is being decorated. Doesn't get much simpler than this.
I have the Vox AC4 for when I can play through an amp and the Boss GT-1 for headphone use. And use the Boss for effects through the amp. Took a little while to ge the Boss to sound good, but I am happy. Both used for just under $200. In hotel rooms and apartment setting without complaints.
I second the Fly Rig V2 of your choice.
I use my Helix LT with headphones when I want something small and quiet. Much easier than moving an amp into the bedroom.
Great tones and very versatile. Plus, you can still use it with an FRFR/amp.
I've had a micro cube and liked them alot, i now have a Blackstar ID Core 10 and like it a little more. It has beautiful stereo effects.
a martin d-18
Positive Grid Spark. It replaced a Mesa Express and pedal board in my living room and sounds fantastic
Positive Grid Spark review
With features such as Smart Jam and Auto Chord, is this the future of desktop amplification?
"The hype is real. The Spark is an incredible practice and recording amp, and it is very competitively priced. To be honest, we’d recommend the Spark at this price if that’s all it delivered, but once you factor in those smart features, each encouraging solo players to learn songs and stay inspired, there is no doubt that the Spark is a guaranteed home run."
Actually too loud! At least if strummed with any vigor. I sometimes practice some quiet finger style on my acoustic (which is not anywhere near a Martin D-18).
I was gonna recommend something but it is discontinued ,sorry.
Or sell the THR10ii and get a simpler THR10. Actually is the one I use since 2012 and will keep using so far it seems
The Vox has been perfect for me. I am usually starting early in the morning when the house is dead quiet and I don't want to wake anyone up. With the headphones in it, I can play as loud as I like and get great sound through a pair of average headphones. I have the vox Amplug clean (https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/amPlugCleanG2--vox-amplug-2-clean-headphone-guitar-amp) that meets my needs. What I really like though is I can wander around plugged in and play. Sometimes when it was nice out in the morning, I would walk outside and play. Now only if I could play the Star Spangled Banner like Hendrix when the sun comes up.
It don't get any simpler than this. The preamp jack on the back can be used for headphones if you want.