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Sorting out the high end?

eppyfone

Member
One of the things that has definitely hit me going from analogue to digital is just how much high end there can be when playing with distortion. I'm trying to perfect my presets for my Tele Special, but there is still a distinct screechiness at the higher frequencies that I can't really get rid of. The best I've done is to use the GEQ block and completely reduce ~8500hz and up. But this has resulted in a duller sound when e.g. playing octaves.

Does anyone know how to get closer to that warm, distorted tube sound? I've got an Orange Rockerverb Mk II, and I suppose that's the sort of sound I'm into.

I realise it can never be perfect because digital sounds can't fully recreate what the physics of tubes are, but surely there's something I'm currently missing out on?
 

funkstation777

Power User
I realise it can never be perfect because digital sounds can't fully recreate what the physics of tubes are, but surely there's something I'm currently missing out on?
I would say, that this is bullshit. ;-) But that's my opinion and NOT a fact.

Use good IRs, and I'm pretty sure, you won't need to use a HiCut. Most guitar cabs usually don't have much information above 5 - 6 khz, but it's still important for the feeling, imho. If you set a HiCut, you may dampen the important frequency range around 2 - 4 khz.

If you are into the rockerverb...use the rockerverb in your AX8 and a suiting cab IR (when going FRFR) The IRs are the key.
 

eppyfone

Member
I would say, that this is bullshit. ;-) But that's my opinion and NOT a fact.

Use good IRs, and I'm pretty sure, you won't need to use a HiCut. Most guitar cabs usually don't have much information above 5 - 6 khz, but it's still important for the feeling, imho. If you set a HiCut, you may dampen the important frequency range around 2 - 4 khz.

If you are into the rockerverb...use the rockerverb in your AX8 and a suiting cab IR (when going FRFR) The IRs are the key.
I forget what IR stands for, but it's to do with emulating cabs right i.e. the cab block in this instance? At the moment I'm not too worried about this because I'm still not comfortable enough with my Ax8 to make the leap into full digital. Like I mentioned in the other reply above, I'm currently still going through my stack but the only difference is that I'm obviously emulating the preamp with the Ax8. That being said, is there still a solution to the high end-iness I hear that doesn't rely on successfully using the cab block? And you're right with the high cut - I think it's not a suitable route because I can already hear a loss of good frequencies :(
 

bdrepko

Power User
I forget what IR stands for, but it's to do with emulating cabs right i.e. the cab block in this instance? At the moment I'm not too worried about this because I'm still not comfortable enough with my Ax8 to make the leap into full digital. Like I mentioned in the other reply above, I'm currently still going through my stack but the only difference is that I'm obviously emulating the preamp with the Ax8. That being said, is there still a solution to the high end-iness I hear that doesn't rely on successfully using the cab block? And you're right with the high cut - I think it's not a suitable route because I can already hear a loss of good frequencies :(
IR stands for Impulse Response. They are used in the cab block. You wouldn't use an IR in your situation (going into the effects return of a tube amp). I cut around 8k. This usually works for me.
 

yek

Moderator
Moderator
Bah, when I left the house I realised I forgot to mention this.

I use the power amp in my Rockerverb and go through my Marshall 1960A 4x12!
So you're using the AX8 as a preamp through your Rockerverb's power amp.

To disable the power amp modeling completely, switch that off in the Global menu AND turn down the Supply SAG parameter until it's says "P.A. off".

Using the AX8 as a preamp only should not result in more high end than when using the real amp.

But if you want to tame the high end in the preamp section, don't use a GEQ but use the Hi Cut Freq parameter in the AMP block instead:
http://wiki.fractalaudio.com/axefx2/index.php?title=AMP_block_parameters#LOW_CUT_FREQ.2C_HI_CUT_FREQ
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
Bah, when I left the house I realised I forgot to mention this.

I use the power amp in my Rockerverb and go through my Marshall 1960A 4x12!
Did you turn off power amp modeling? If you didn't you're getting the coloration of the virtual power amp plus the coloration of the real power amp. Since tube power amps (whether real or virtual) boost high frequencies you will get artificially boosted highs if you don't turn off power amp modeling.

Additionally the power amp in a Rockerverb has very little negative feedback so it will boost the highs more than most power amps.

Fractal Audio
 

mortega76

Fractal Fanatic
Wait, so this guy bought the most technologically advanced digital processing unit to date and didn't bother to read the instructions on how to properly connect it to his existing setup and is now complaining that it doesn't sound good? Sounds like something I would do... ;-)
 

mmpete

Experienced
snip ... because I'm still not comfortable enough with my Ax8 to make the leap into full digital ... snip
I started out AX8 life with a Mesa 20/20 power amp into a Marshall 1936 cab. It sounded good but to me, never really captured the essence of a real valve amp/cab setup. I then purchased a Friedman ASM-12 cab (FRFR) and all of a sudden it is like having a completely new toolbox. The AX8 really shines @100% when you ditch the PA/Cab scenario because you are getting to use all of the modelling features and some incredible cabs/amp combinations. The whole sound just opens up. Anyhow - just my 2 cents worth.
 

Plato67

Member
I'm interested in this as well. I've just been programming my setlist into the AX8. I'm playing my G&L ASAT with MFD PU's thru my PA into an EV LiveX 15" (or sometimes 12"). The low end and mids sounds glorious. I'm using the DC30 amp. I love the full open AC30 clean sound. The top end is a little screechy, but def. usable. I'm using stock cabs, but the high end digital tin is still there. Is there a high wattage speaker I should be trying? I'd like to try the OH Celestion Gold IR, but haven't had time to learn how to load it...
 

eppyfone

Member
Thank you Yek and FractalAudio for your help! That definitely did a lot of good, and now I just have to go back and adjust everything else accordingly.

So would that be the only thing to keep in mind when using the Ax8 as a preamp? Currently, I'm not modeling a cab (since I'm going through my Marshall 4x12) and the amp block has the power amp switched off. Is that all the bases covered?

Thanks again!
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
Thank you Yek and FractalAudio for your help! That definitely did a lot of good, and now I just have to go back and adjust everything else accordingly.

So would that be the only thing to keep in mind when using the Ax8 as a preamp? Currently, I'm not modeling a cab (since I'm going through my Marshall 4x12) and the amp block has the power amp switched off. Is that all the bases covered?

Thanks again!
Yup, you've got it.

Another way to do it, if you want simulated power amp breakup, is to turn Power Amp Modeling on and then go to the SPKR tab in the amp block and turn the Low and High Res parameters all the way down so that you get a flat response. This will let you use amps that get their distortion from the power amp, i.e. Fenders, Vox, etc.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
i have found that even with good IRs there is more bass and more treble than a real amp in a room. I therefore use a low cut and high cut on all my patches and it's made a world of difference.
IRs are equivalent to close-mic'ing an amp. When you close mic an amp you almost always get more bass and treble than an "amp in the room". The extra bass is due to the proximity effect of the microphone. The extra treble is primarily due to the directivity of the speaker.

During mixdown engineers/producers will typically incorporate a low cut and high cut to help the sound "sit in the mix".

The thing to take away from all this is that an IR represents the close mic'd sound (unless using far-field IRs which are rare) and the close mic'd sound of an amp is much different than the "amp in the room" sound. As such it is common to use frequency shaping on a close-mic'd amp.

Regardless the OP was commenting on using the AX-8 with a real guitar cab so all this is irrelevant.
 

Sixstring

Axe-Master
IRs are equivalent to close-mic'ing an amp. When you close mic an amp you almost always get more bass and treble than an "amp in the room". The extra bass is due to the proximity effect of the microphone. The extra treble is primarily due to the directivity of the speaker.

During mixdown engineers/producers will typically incorporate a low cut and high cut to help the sound "sit in the mix".

The thing to take away from all this is that an IR represents the close mic'd sound (unless using far-field IRs which are rare) and the close mic'd sound of an amp is much different than the "amp in the room" sound. As such it is common to use frequency shaping on a close-mic'd amp.

Regardless the OP was commenting on using the AX-8 with a real guitar cab so all this is irrelevant.
Maybe the case but it is still good information to have. These little easter eggs of info that some of us don't know about are really cool to learn about!
 

barhrecords

Axe-Master
IRs are equivalent to close-mic'ing an amp. When you close mic an amp you almost always get more bass and treble than an "amp in the room". The extra bass is due to the proximity effect of the microphone. The extra treble is primarily due to the directivity of the speaker.

During mixdown engineers/producers will typically incorporate a low cut and high cut to help the sound "sit in the mix".

The thing to take away from all this is that an IR represents the close mic'd sound (unless using far-field IRs which are rare) and the close mic'd sound of an amp is much different than the "amp in the room" sound. As such it is common to use frequency shaping on a close-mic'd amp.

Regardless the OP was commenting on using the AX-8 with a real guitar cab so all this is irrelevant.
I wonder if a new "Far field" mic type in the cab block could compensate for some of the differences. A little different tact than the Dephase parameter.
 
i have found that even with good IRs there is more bass and more treble than a real amp in a room. I therefore use a low cut and high cut on all my patches and it's made a world of difference.
Same here! I put a parametric EQ in the first block of all my presets to help with some of the invasive frequencies my setup seems to like to emphasize. My Mesa Combo gets shrill quick when you turn up the gain and post-EQ'ing it out was always a challenge. PEQ was the cure!
 

Randall d

Inspired
Try turning the Preamp Definition down (try -6.00). This is something somebody suggested on a thread and I tried it and liked it.
 
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