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Steve Lukather Soldano X88R preset

guitarnerdswe

Fractal Fanatic
This preset uses the YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3 IR from YA Audio. Get it here:
Bogna 412

The Rig

What's represented


Soldano X88R preamp
DBX 160X compressor
Eventide H3000SE micropitchshift
TC Electronic 1210 chorus
2 Lexicon PCM70 delays
Roland SRV2000 reverb
Some kind of EQ/BBE 441 Sonic Maximizer
HH V800 Mos-fet power amp
2 Marshall 4x12 w/ Celestion Vintage 30

Not included
Wah
Yamaha SPX900
Rocktron PRO GAP preamp

Routing
The routing is based on the very first rig with the CAE 3+ preamp (done after a real CAE schematic). That rig is almost identical to the last incarnation of the X88R rig. Everything is even housed in the same gray fabric covered rack, in the same order etc. They probably just pulled out the Soldano/HH and popped in the 3+/VHT, plus added the John Suhr modded Marshall head (which was used just for the preamp). Back to the Soldano rig: There was a Rocktron preamp, which I don't know what it was used for. I'm guessing for DI clean tones in the studio (pure speculation). Also don't know about the SPX900. Maybe if he needed something weird or extra in the studio? Both units were removed after the KOD tour.

Preamp
Soldano X88R preamp, prototype. It had a bunch of different values compared to stock. Different output section (separate outputs for all 3 channels), different output transformer. Long story short, it had more compression and gain. I tweaked the amp models with this in mind, and also used pics of his settings, and fine tuned by ear. CH2 is much cleaner than you'd think, also a bit stiff and tubby. CH3 is just over the top distortion, with a lot of low end. Even more than his rhythm tones.

Power amp
Solid state power amp, so power amp modelling is turned off. I don't know what (if any) colouration the HH imparted, but I think that turning off the power amp modelling is enough.

Pitch
Pretty much everyone back then just set their H3000s to the original micropitchshift preset and left it there (there are 2 versions). Matched to real hardware (Leon Todds H3500, which is a H3000 + sampling capability). Pitch was always on.

Chorus
Matched to the TC1210 plugin and real hardware. Settings are the same as Luke used. It was always engaged on clean tones, and he kicked it on for leads sometimes.

Compressor
Loosely based on the DBX 160X that Luke used. Same ratio, and then the rest is a bit by ear, and a bit by technical information about the unit. Always on for clean, not used for distorted sounds.

Reverb
He used a big room reverb on his SRV2000. Stole the settings that were visible in pictures, did the rest by ear. Always on.

Delay
Based on real clips of PCM70s from users who were kind enough to help me. Leon Todd also helped out with his PCM81 to confirm a few things about the PCM architecture. Luke used a 1/8 & 1/4 delay most of the time, somewhat synced to the song (Bob Bradshaw changed presets backstage, and also rode the volume of the delays depending on the song). The PCM70 doesn't have tap tempo, but a BPM function on certain presets where you enter the BPM, and the unit adjusts the delay times. Occasionally, Luke would use a kind of bouncing delay (Out of Love live is an example), so I put that in there too.

The presets that he later became famous for using (pan delay and circular dlys), were rarely used. He used them for improvised stuff like the Hendrix tribute (Little Wing & Red House), and nothing else. Nonetheless, they've been painstakingly recreated. The only real difference is that the diffusion in the Axe is not as grainy, but it's tweaked as close as it can get. The weird levels of the delays (the left channel being louder than the right) is a quirk of the older PCM units. It's wonky, but it's part of the character.

DLY 1 CH A = Pan delay
DLY 1 CH B = 1/4 & 1/8 delay
DLY 1 CH C = 1/4 & 1/8 delay, louder

MTD 2 CH A = Circular dlys
MTD 2 CH B = "Bounce" delay

EQ/Sonic Maximizer
He did in fact use the BBE 441 for a while in the beginning of the 1990s. It was even in the early CAE 3+ rig. Before that, he used Rane Eqs for extra tone shaping. I stole the settings for a Sonic Maximizer from Jason Scott, and bumped it up a bit. Always on.

Cabs
He used old 1970s Marshall 4x12s, with after market Celestion Vintage 30s (not the Marshall Vintage by Celestion, which are different). The grill cloths were painted black, originally salt and pepper. I tried to find a suitable factory or free IR, but nothing sounds as good as the Bogna 412 pack by YA Audio. The specific IR is YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3.





EDIT 2021-10-18: Updated delays ahead of 17.01. Increased pitch and reverb levels.
EDIT 2021-11-01: Ported the Pan Delays to the regular delay block so that MTD 1 could handle the TC1210 chorus. Updated TC1210 and Eventide micropitchshift emulations based on real hardware.
 

Attachments

  • Lukather Soldano X88R.syx
    48.2 KB · Views: 117
Last edited:

rrhoads17

Inspired
You sent me this preset a couple of weeks ago and it's fabulous! Can't recommend enough! I am actually working on something similar, but I am working on the EVH tone during the FUCK and Balance tours. That rig is simple, yet there are still alot of kinks to be worked out since I am using custom made IRs and he used Micropitch as well, but I am having a hard time emulating it to my ears . I hope to have it completed soon, and I can share it.
 

guitarnerdswe

Fractal Fanatic
You sent me this preset a couple of weeks ago and it's fabulous! Can't recommend enough! I am actually working on something similar, but I am working on the EVH tone during the FUCK and Balance tours. That rig is simple, yet there are still alot of kinks to be worked out since I am using custom made IRs and he used Micropitch as well, but I am having a hard time emulating it to my ears . I hope to have it completed soon, and I can share it.
You can steal the pitch block from my preset. Luke and EVH used the same Eventide model, same preset.
 

rrhoads17

Inspired
You can steal the pitch block from my preset. Luke and EVH used the same Eventide model, same preset.
Right, I am tempted to use my Eventide Micropitch pedal to try to match them since it has the H3000 setting, but the real H3000 sounds better to my ears. I already stole the Flange block from Rocco Pezzin lol.
 

Patzag

Fractal Fanatic
This preset uses the YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3 IR from YA Audio. Get it here:
Bogna 412

The Rig

What's represented


Soldano X88R preamp
DBX 160X compressor
Eventide H3000SE micropitchshift
TC Electronic 1210 chorus
2 Lexicon PCM70 delays
Roland SRV2000 reverb
Some kind of EQ/BBE 441 Sonic Maximizer
HH V800 Mos-fet power amp
2 Marshall 4x12 w/ Celestion Vintage 30

Not included
Wah
Yamaha SPX900
Rocktron PRO GAP preamp

Routing
The routing is based on the very first rig with the CAE 3+ preamp (done after a real CAE schematic). That rig is almost identical to the last incarnation of the X88R rig. Everything is even housed in the same gray fabric covered rack, in the same order etc. They probably just pulled out the Soldano/HH and popped in the 3+/VHT, plus added the John Suhr modded Marshall head (which was used just for the preamp). Back to the Soldano rig: There was a Rocktron preamp, which I don't know what it was used for. I'm guessing for DI clean tones in the studio (pure speculation). Also don't know about the SPX900. Maybe if he needed something weird or extra in the studio? Both units were removed after the KOD tour.

Preamp
Soldano X88R preamp, prototype. It had a bunch of different values compared to stock. Different output section (separate outputs for all 3 channels), different output transformer. Long story short, it had more compression and gain. I tweaked the amp models with this in mind, and also used pics of his settings, and fine tuned by ear. CH2 is much cleaner than you'd think, also a bit stiff and tubby. CH3 is just over the top distortion, with a lot of low end. Even more than his rhythm tones.

Power amp
Solid state power amp, so power amp modelling is turned off. I don't know what (if any) colouration the HH imparted, but I think that turning off the power amp modelling is enough.

Pitch
Pretty much everyone back then just set their H3000s to the original micropitchshift preset and left it there (there are 2 versions). I matched the plugin by Soundworks, which is made by the very same guys that did the hardware and software on the H3000. Great plugin, very authentic. Eventides own plugins don't sound bad, but the algorithms are just generic and not authentic at all. Pitch was always on.

Chorus
Matched to the TC1210 plugin. Again, amazing plugin. You can tell a lot of love went into it. Settings are the same as Luke used. It was always on on clean tones, and he kicked it on for leads sometimes.

Compressor
Loosely based on the DBX 160X that Luke used. Same ratio, and then the rest is a bit by ear, and a bit by technical information about the unit. Always on for clean, not used for distorted sounds.

Reverb
He used a big room reverb on his SRV2000. Stole the settings that were visible in pictures, did the rest by ear. Always on.

Delay
Based on real clips of PCM70s from users who were kind enough to help me. Leon Todd also helped out with his PCM81 to confirm a few things about the PCM architecture. Luke used a 1/8 & 1/4 delay most of the time, somewhat synced to the song (Bob Bradshaw changed presets backstage, and also rode the volume of the delays depending on the song). The PCM70 doesn't have tap tempo, but a BPM function on certain presets where you enter the BPM, and the unit adjusts the delay times. Occasionally, Luke would use a kind of bouncing delay (Out of Love live is an example), so I put that in there too.

The presets that he later became famous for using (pan delay and circular dlys), were rarely used. He used them for improvised stuff like the Hendrix tribute (Little Wing & Red House), and nothing else. Nonetheless, they've been painstakingly recreated. The only real difference is that the diffusion in the Axe is not as grainy, but it's tweaked as close as it can get. The weird levels of the delays (the left channel being louder than the right) is a quirk of the older PCM units. It's wonky, but it's part of the character.

MTD 1 CH A = Pan delay
MTD 1 CH B = 1/4 & 1/8 delay
MTD 1 CH C = 1/4 & 1/8 delay, louder
MTD 1 CH D = "Bounce" delay

MTD 2 CH A = Circular dlys

EQ/Sonic Maximizer
He did in fact use the BBE 441 for a while in the beginning of the 1990s. It was even in the early CAE 3+ rig. Before that, he used Rane Eqs for extra tone shaping. I stole the settings for a Sonic Maximizer from Jason Scott, and bumped it up a bit. Always on.

Cabs
He used old 1970s Marshall 4x12s, with after market Celestion Vintage 30s (not the Marshall Vintage by Celestion, which are different). The grill cloths were painted black, originally salt and pepper. I tried to find a suitable factory or free IR, but nothing sounds as good as the Bogna 412 pack by YA Audio. The specific IR is YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3.





EDIT 2021-10-18: Updated delays ahead of 17.01. Increased pitch and reverb levels.
Would you mind posting the Axe Edit screen grab of this. Loading onto an FM9!
 

Sashman

Inspired
Thank you, I really like this preset.
I tried it with some other York Audio BGNR IRs as well, love it, well done!
 

is9582

Power User
This preset uses the YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3 IR from YA Audio. Get it here:
Bogna 412

The Rig

What's represented


Soldano X88R preamp
DBX 160X compressor
Eventide H3000SE micropitchshift
TC Electronic 1210 chorus
2 Lexicon PCM70 delays
Roland SRV2000 reverb
Some kind of EQ/BBE 441 Sonic Maximizer
HH V800 Mos-fet power amp
2 Marshall 4x12 w/ Celestion Vintage 30

Cabs
He used old 1970s Marshall 4x12s, with after market Celestion Vintage 30s (not the Marshall Vintage by Celestion, which are different). The grill cloths were painted black, originally salt and pepper. I tried to find a suitable factory or free IR, but nothing sounds as good as the Bogna 412 pack by YA Audio. The specific IR is YA BGNR 412 V30 57-3.
Thanks for sharing the preset. I don't have the YA's Bogner pack, so I tried some of my other YA IRs, specifically I tried the 5153 412 VH20 Mix 01 and Mix 02 in the first two slots, hard panned left and right as the first two IRs were in your original preset. I enjoyed it so much that I played for more than an hour.

Lee
 

Stratmatt

Member
Hi, this all seems like a great lot of work however I tried to import this for my Axe3 and it comes up with a completely blank preset. Any idea why? I'm running 17.00. Thanks.
 

Blix

Inspired
Hi, this all seems like a great lot of work however I tried to import this for my Axe3 and it comes up with a completely blank preset. Any idea why? I'm running 17.00. Thanks.
Same here, but I gave it another try and it worked the second time I tried to import it.
 

Georg80

Member
When I import the .syx file to my Axe FX III (FW 17.00) it just shows an empty preset ???
What am I doing wrong
 

km 202257

Member
@guitarnerdswe , thank you for developing the preset and making it available here. I downloaded it and there are lots of blocks to steal to my presets! :grin: Can't believe this is for free, this will be my gems as far as I'm owning AXE-FX III.

In case you're interested in how people sound like with your preset, here's my track inspired by your preset. Cab IRs are swapped with that of Pacific Woodworks' 1x12 Cab with EVM12L, however. Believe it or not, I played this with the red guitar in my avatar.

Maybe not much Lukather-y (just because I haven't dug into him that much), but hope you like it!
 
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