Valve amp vs modelling in Apple Logic

Apple Logic 9 – Amp Designer and Pedalboard vs Matamp C7


Issue 332 of Guitarist – on sale 03 August – features the second instalment of Mick's longterm test of Apple Logic Pro 9, the company's flagship recording package.

It does a lot more than straight multitracking of course. One significant extra for guitarists are the Amp Designer and Pedalboard plug-ins for digitally modelled guitar amp and effects sounds.

As part of the test, Mick has recorded five short phrases, enabling you to compare them, below. Here's how he approached it…

"I set up a small amp and a few pedals at home – deliberately simple and very much with a 'home recording' head on, instead of using Guitarist's full studio resources. This is all about being quick and simple, not necessarily spending hours and hours tweaking sounds.

"The signal chain goes: guitar into a HumDinger by TheGigRig. One output (the buffered one) goes through a selection of pedals and on to a Matamp C7 head through a Celestion Alnico Blue speaker, then close mic'd around two inches off the centre of the cone with an Electro Harmonix ribbon mic.

"The other output goes straight to a Zoom R16's Hi-Z input which is acting as an audio interface for Logic on my Mac. The Zoom is doing nothing to the tone, so the guitar is simply DI'd to the Mac.

"That means that the playing excerpts you hear for amp and Logic tones are exactly the same – played once, but recorded via two separate signal chains. I've left the mic'd amp sounds absolutely as is: no mastering, no EQ, no nothing.

"The DI'd signal is then treated to Apple's Pedalboard and Amp Designer plug ins after I've played. Here are the results. Note that when it says 'OD 1' for a pedal, for example, that means that control is set to 1 o'clock if you were viewing it as a clock face.

Amp Tone 1 – Fender Stratocaster
Matamp C7 set clean with the amp's spring reverb


Logic Tone 1 – Fender Stratocaster
Apple Amp Designer Small Brownface amp model with the model's spring reverb


Amp Tone 2 – Fender Stratocaster
Matamp C7 set clean with the amp's spring reverb
Ibanez TS-808 Tube Screamer (Keeley mod). OD 1 / Level 10.30 / Tone 1


Logic Tone 2 – Fender Stratocaster
Apple Amp Designer Small Brownface amp model with the model's spring reverb
Apple Pedalboard Vintage Drive Pedal


Amp Tone 3 – Fender Stratocaster
Matamp C7 set clean with the amp's spring reverb
Jimi Hendrix Fuzz Face. Vol 2, Fuzz 3.30
T-Rex Viper. Depth 10, Level 1, Speed 1


Logic Tone 3 – Fender Stratocaster
Apple Amp Designer Small Brownface amp model with the model's spring reverb
Apple Pedalboard Happy Face Fuzz
Apple Pedalboard Spin Box


Amp Tone 4 – Fender Telecaster
Matamp C7 set clean with the amp's spring reverb
Fulltone Full-Drive II Mosfet, comp cut mode. Volume 11, Tone 1, Overdrive 9, Boost n/a
MXR Carbon Copy Delay. Regen 8, Mix 9, Delay 9.30


Logic Tone 4 – Fender Telecaster
Apple Amp Designer Small Brownface amp model with the model's spring reverb
Apple Pedalboard Vintage Drive
Apple Pedalboatd Blue Echo


Amp Tone 5 – PRS DGT
Matamp C7 set clean with the amp's spring reverb
Fulltone Full-Drive II Mosfet, vintage mode. Volume 10, Tone 1, Overdrive 1, Boost 1
MXR Carbon Copy Delay. Regen 9, Mix 10.30, Delay 11


Logic Tone 5 – PRS DGT
Apple Amp Designer Small Brownface amp model with the model's spring reverb
Apple Pedalboard Vintage Drive
Apple Pedalboard Double Dragon
Apple Pedalboard Blue Echo


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