The sound of Master Of Puppets in your DAW? Yes please! Neural DSP's new Mesa Boogie Mark IIC+ Suite plugin is designed to emulate the legendary guitar amps used by Metallica's Kirk Hammett and James Hetfield, as well as Prince, Steve Lukather (Toto), Neal Schon (Journey), and John Petrucci (Dream Theater).
Crucially the second amp in the suite is the Mesa/Boogie IIC++; the rare factory-modified iteration of the original IIC+ amplifier. It adds a new preamp-circuit design that provides additional gain alongside tighter low-end response. And is so revered by Metallica they even have a pet name for it.
Hetfield called theirs the 'Crunch Berries: "They made very few of those Boogies and we happened to get a few," he told us. "And those amps, along with EMG pickups were defining our sound. They enabled us to get the sound that we needed to get across. It's a very integral part of the sound still."
Hammett concurred in the same interview: "They made very few of those Boogies and we happened to get a few," he told us. "And those amps, along with EMG pickups were defining our sound. They enabled us to get the sound that we needed to get across. If it wasn’t for those Mesa/Boogie amps and EMG pickups, I don’t know how much further we would have got with just Marshalls.
“With the Boogies it was something different," continued Hammett. "Those Simul-Classes had three gain stages and a parametric EQ built in. The great thing about that amp is how they cascaded the gain stages, there’s a particular order that you could run the gain stages to get a certain sound. And that’s what we liked about them."
So for Metallica guitar fans this is understandably going to be a big deal. Because Neural's expertise is now beyond question when it comes to delivering accurately modelled amp tones for your recordings or jams.
In this suite you will find the Mesa Boogie Mark IIC+ and Mark IIC++ amps with a virtual layout that mimics the original: the Amp Front Panel features push/pull knobs for Bright/Rhythm channel and Bright/Lead channel, Treble Shift, Bass Shift, Deep, and Lead/Rhythm, as well as Mesa Boogie’s famed five-band graphic EQ for tone-shaping Valhalla.
The rear of the amplifier features Presence and Reverb controls and a switch between Simul-class and Class A.
In addition there's a Compressor, Chorus, Stereo Delay and Reverb to colour the scope of the amp's Overdrive 1 and 2 that will take you from boost to beastly.
Virtual cabs are very well catered for here; hundreds of IRs made by 5by5 Studios with three speaker options (Mesa Boogie Rectifier Standard Slant 4x12, Traditional Slant 4x12, and stacked Horizontal 2x12s), ten virtual mics, and Neural DSP’s room-mic section. You can also load your own IRs.