Nail Tim Henson's guitar tone with his new signature Archetype plugin suite from Neural DSP

Neural DSP has unveiled the latest in its Archetype series of signature plugin sets with Polyphia's future-forward electric guitar trailblazer Tim Henson joining its lineup.

Like previous editions of the Archetype series – which have included plugins for the likes of Gojira's Joe Duplantier and Cory Wong – the Archetype: Tim Henson presents a comprehensive software solution for nailing his tone, and contains three guitar amplifier models, an array of effects pedals, and a cab sim module comprising hundreds of IRs made by Adam "Nolly" Getgood.

Let's start with the amps, first. Here you have an acoustic guitar amp, a low-gain British-voiced amplifier and a high-gain lead head for crushing rhythms and full-on saturated gain to help those solos pop off the fingerboard. Once again, these are beautifully rendered onscreen, reassuringly amp-like. 

The Acoustic amp model has a blend control that can give your pickups an acoustic/piezo quality. The Rhythm model, meanwhile, has two channels, a three-band EQ and Presence controls, and will take you from sparkling cleans to crunch. Finally, the Lead amp model, finished in an alien pink that looks like it was colour-matched to The Blob (the Chuck Russell version as opposed to the original) is simply described by Henson as: “this one f**ks.“ But let's not get bogged down in technical terms here.

Moving on, there is a generous complement of effects. The customary 9-band EQ affords you a huge degree of control over your sound, and as the black, white and Blob pink colour scheme suggests, you can run one with each amp. 

Now, EQ is exciting, no question, but the Multivoicer is exciting and radical, and if you have the chops, its quartet of pitch-shifted signals will help you recreate those sci-fi guitar sounds that make Henson's guitar style so compelling. Again, as with all Neural DSP products, you get a lot of control over this effect, with the voicing library allowing you to set the effect over the root note, modes, chords for harmonising and arpeggiating.

You can also activate MIDI to receive MIDI chords or notes that you can harmonise with your DI signal to the MIDI-instructed pitch, effectively building an electrical orchestra out of your guitar.

Elsewhere, there are boost, compressor and overdrive pedals in the pre-effects section, with the time-sensitive post effects comprising a simple one-knob chorus, a reverb with switchable shimmer mode, and a fully-featured delay pedal with tap tempo, a trio of modes (ping pong, wide, normal) and a choice of diffusion, vintage digital and modern. 

Then, of course, you have the cab sim module with IRs from Adam "Nolly" Getgood. All this can be run as a standalone plugin suite. No DAW needed. Or run it inside one. The option's yours. 

The Neural DSP Archetype: Tim Henson is available now, priced €119, and there's a 14-day free trial. See Neural DSP for more details.

Neural DSP Achetype: Tim Henson

(Image credit: Neural DSP)
Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.