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ML SOUND LAB

Cab Pack Wizard
Vendor
We talk so much about IR's and different speakers but sound is sometimes a bit too hard to explain by words. So this time let's look at some SM57 graphs of some of the best representations of different speakers I've had the pleasure of miking up. :)`

The classic Chinese V30:
V30.png


I call this the perfect template. Just look at how neutral and flat a V30 can be at its best. Very even frequency roll offs at 150hz and 6khz. This is an SM57 IR from Cab Pack 9 which is based on a Bogner 4x12 with Chinese V30 speakers in it. Also Cab Pack 19 features the ML Angle which is based on an Engl 4x12 Pro and also has these speakers but front loaded while the Bogner cab is rear loaded. Overall it's a very even and characterless tone giving you total control to what ever you please. In comparison this speaker will feel more direct than most speakers.

The 70w Mesa V30:
Mesa%20V30.png


This is an IR from Cab Pack 7 which was my first official Cab Pack. It's got many similarities to the regular Chinese V30 but the frequencies kind of shift lower. Frequency roll off at around 100hz and 5khz which make it darker and therefore more pleasant sounding for most people. Actually it's a bit uncanny if you compare this graph to the Greenback Pre-Rola 75hz graph and how similar they actually are. It's no surprise that the Mesa V30s and the Greeback Pre-Rola 75hz speakers are my top 2 favorite speakers.

(Disclaimer: As this is an IR from my first official shoot you'll see information all the way down to 30hz that's not audible in any way for our use case but other packs will not have this information. Other than that my shoot method has always remained the same and Cab Pack 7 still includes some of my best work.)

English made 90s Greenback:
90s%20Greenback.png


This speaker has by far the most pleasant high end roll off and is brighter than a V30. This particular IR can be found in both Cab Pack 8 and Cab Pack 20 as it's the SM57 D1 from ML Brit TV. You can't go wrong with this IR. It will not sound agressive but it will sound sweet and will give you a lot of cut through but never in a harsh way.

Van Halen's signature speaker G12EVH:
G12EVH.png


This is an IR from Cab Pack 12. The sound is actually very close to the English Greenback but the high end is closer to a Mesa V30 to be honest. The biggest difference to other speakers however is the huge low end around 125hz kind of like the 55hz Pre-Rola. It's perfect for a tight low end as you can turn down the bass on your amp and use these IR's to compensate for it. Also it's a bit scooped kind of like the GEQ on a Mesa Mark IV in a V shape so it will make most vintage amps sound more modern. I've used it as a tool so make some bands sound more modern.

The 55hz Pre-Rola Greenback:
Greenback%2055hz.png


This cabinet and speakers are almost priceless at this point and an essential part of rock'n'roll history. I call this cab the Jimi cab as it makes my strat instantly sound just like him. :) Frequency-wise it was actually really hard to mic up. The 4khz-5khz area can easily sound too harsh so I spent a lot of time dialing that out but as I was capable of making it sound nice and even Cliff himself said that it's the best job I've done so far so I couldn't be happier. This is my go-to cabinet for vintage tones. I use it for a band that's kind of an Arctic Monkeys type of vibe. These IR's can only be found in Cab Pack 20.

The 75hz Pre-Rola Greenback:
Greenback%2075hz.png


This is the best cabinet for my own use from Cab Pack 20. I just love looking at that curve. It's so even and no sharp spikes anywhere meaning that it's capable of sounding very pleasant throughout its full spectrum. Amazing balance with a slight middle scoop and therefore surprisingly modern sounding as this is what was used on most records that started rock'n'roll after all. I wish I could afford to own a cabinet like this but I don't think it will ever happen. Similarities to Mesa V30 speakers kind of make a happy guy as I am originally a Mesa guy.

I'll add more speakers when I get a chance but I think this should be a good read already. Please discuss! :)
 

paranoid

Fractal Fanatic
out of your cab packs Cab pack 8 is my favorite pack so far. My goto though is the CabIR 1960ax which is the same speaker type I guess. Back in my real amp days in the late 80's early 90's I had a peavey 4x12 with these speakers( that I wish I still had)(I do not care if it wasn't cool to have peavey back then, it is what I could afford at the time), and my head just wont let me get away from that speaker sound.
 

ML SOUND LAB

Cab Pack Wizard
Vendor
The TV was also my go-to before I did the Pre-Rola 75hz. That's the one I choose for Marshall tones. I loved the PIN68 CabIR did and I'm sure you'll like it as well. :)

We have to remember that although I'm posting graphs of these speakers in reality every speaker will have a unique sound. F.ex. the Pre-Rola IR's out there are all drastically different sounding. Even the 90s TV cab has these modern Greenbacks and none of those speakers sound anything alike. Therefore IR producers do their best to capture the sound as good as possible but the sound itself comes from the gear we shoot. Last year I shot around 60 different V30 speakers and they were all different sounding.
 
For me, it really depends on the amp I'm playing through.
I use my eyes just as much as my ears, so these kinds of graphs are nothing new to me.
If I'm working with a naturally dark amp (Rectifiers, Bogners, Friedmans, etc.) I'll tend to look for an IR graph that exaggerates the highs, for example.

The more balanced IR's seem to work best (for me) with the more balanced amps (or maybe just the ones I'm most familiar with).
So the shapes ML Sound Lab posted tend to compliment the 5150 models, the Mesa Mark IV models (once you know how to work them), Marshall JCM's, etc.

I guess it's relevant to admit (since I'm a consumer) that my objective with blending IR's is usually to create something akin to the even, smooth curves displayed here. If I can't get it out of a single IR, I don't immediately give up- it just means (theoretically) that I need to find the IR that will perfectly compliment it.
 

Etudica

Inspired
Dumb question probably, but what is the distinction between the 55hz and 75hz pre-rola IRs? is that the low res freq?
 

ETOLKIEN

Experienced
Cone types

Celestion used two main types of cones for their guitar speakers: lead cones (75Hz) and low resonance cones (55Hz).

All pre-rola labels have 75Hz printed on them (dont ask me why) so you cannot rely on the label to tell you which type of cone your speaker has. However the cone itself will have a white stamp on it:

  • The lead cones or 75Hz cones are usually stamped '102 003' or 'H1777'
  • The low resonance or 55Hz cones are usually stamped '102 014' or 'SP444'
  • Commonly found 55Hz models are the T1281 & T1534 (G12H), and the T1511 (G12M).
  • Commonly found 75Hz models are the T1217 (G12H) and the T1221 (G12M)
Tonal differences

75Hz cones generally have a stronger mid-range. 55Hz cones have more of a scooped sound. Both cone types have their fans and your preference will come down to personal taste.
For the record 55Hz is a very low bass frequency and is not achievable on a standard tuned guitar. The low E on a guitar is around 82Hz. The reason some guitar players prefer the 55Hz cones is because of their different tonal characteristics compared with the 75Hz, not because they can get lower bass sounds out of them.

http://www.bygonetones.com/pre-rola-explained---part-2.html
 

ML SOUND LAB

Cab Pack Wizard
Vendor
the first one looks the best fore sure :D
That's the most neutral and characterless speaker of the bunch for sure. Essentially a Greenback or a Mesa V30 will not give you that much brightness no matter what you do since they don't have any information that high. :)
 

symphx

Fractal Fanatic
It would be cool if you played examples of these, and even cooler if you made a best of cab packs! I honestly go crazy buying all these packs listening to a ton of cabs, trying to pick a few, that sound good with a particular amp, only later to find they miss the mark with other amps, even guitars. Its honestly like picking a needle in a haystack. Many times I just go with the standard cabs in the axe, pick a few pick a few mics and tweek to get nearly what I want.

I find the standard 4x12 v30 mixed with almost any other 4x12 sounds great, eg. 6160, cali 4x12.

Anyhoo, I have greatly strived to find an even keel nearly flat amp with small rolloffs at each end.
 

ML SOUND LAB

Cab Pack Wizard
Vendor
It would be cool if you played examples of these, and even cooler if you made a best of cab packs! I honestly go crazy buying all these packs listening to a ton of cabs, trying to pick a few, that sound good with a particular amp, only later to find they miss the mark with other amps, even guitars. Its honestly like picking a needle in a haystack. Many times I just go with the standard cabs in the axe, pick a few pick a few mics and tweek to get nearly what I want.

I find the standard 4x12 v30 mixed with almost any other 4x12 sounds great, eg. 6160, cali 4x12.

Anyhoo, I have greatly strived to find an even keel nearly flat amp with small rolloffs at each end.
Thank you for the feedback. I'll think of something. :)

I really wouldn't advice you to mix that many IR's with each other. That may give you a pleasant sound but I've noticed that the more IR's you mix the less authentic you sound. When you mix different speaker types you get interesting end results but you kind of enter a similar situation as when using too much de-phase. You start sounding neutral. I would much rather advice you to use IR's as the focus point of your sound and not the amp sims. An IR collection is way more powerful than any amp sim in the Axe-Fx.

F.ex. if you feel like you want more cut and presence you should try brighter IR's like f.ex. the Citrus 4x12 or Angle 4x12 to get that. It's way more natural sounding than boosting the presence knob on the amp with an IR that doesn't have any range in the higher frequencies and vice versa. If you feel like you're sounding like a bee in the ear I wouldn't recommend you to blend IR's until that goes away but rather find 1-3 IR's single mic IR's or a single Alloy IR that gets you there.

High quality IR's is what's closing the gap between modelers being capable of replacing real life tube rigs so I tend to emphasize people using IR's more like you'd do things in real life. I for one constantly compare the Axe-Fx to it's real life counterparts and cabinets as well.
 
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