Hello again lovely people! Well its closing in on the end of the year and we've got a few moments to look back and see whats happened. Things f...
A year in review
December 24, 2014
Is this thing on?
October 27, 2014
Hey y’all, today we’re going to discuss how I used the Eleven rack to get Doom metal guitar tones.
So one of the things I read a lot when going into using the Eleven rack was that you can’t make Doom metal with guitar amp sims cause it is not organic enough. Now, I’m not saying that I was able to make it sound 100% accurate doing that, because goddamn there is no perfect replacement compared to a real vintage amp (I haven’t been able to try out an AXE FX II so I could be wrong). I guess this was my some what successful attempt at proving the naysayers wrong. Granted, ya’ll haven’t heard the tones yet, so you’ll just have to take my word for it.
Now, I ended up using a good bit of software on the track and also used a few “tricks” to make it sound more organic. Did I mention that no physical instruments were used to make this? So yeah, I guess amp sims and guitar libraries can be deceitful! Double or triple tracking guitars and basses with different software was really helpful in making it sound not only more full but more “real”. With all the main riffs, I tracked them with Omnisphere and its amp sims/effects. Then, I would use Shreddage 2 along with POD Farm 2 and that would give me two guitar tracks to work with. The “trick” that seems like it brought it all together was the Eleven Rack, and it also made it a bit cumbersome. At the beginning of the year AVID decided to untie the Eleven Rack from Pro Tools and make it much more useful piece of hardware/software. Let’s face it; that piece of equipment was on its last goddamn legs years ago, so if this is a sign of more fucking support for it then it’s about goddamn time.
Anyway, the only downside of this is that the Eleven rack cannot communicate with the PC via USB. Unlike POD Farm. With the line six stuff you can use the software as an effect in your DAW and play whatever you want through it. So that forced me to be a little creative. Now I don’t currently have access to physical instruments so how the fuck does one go about utilizing the sounds when the only way to use them is through the ¼ inch guitar input on the front?! And that’s where I had to get creative *pats self on back*.
What I ended up doing was taking dry samples (Shreddage 2 uses only dry guitars for samples so I exported dry riffs from that as WAV files), loading those onto an SD card, dropping that into my Zoom H2N, plugging a dual headphone cable into the headphone out on the H2N and then the other cable to the guitar in on the Eleven rack. BOOM! Thanks AVID for making me do things in the most fucking round about way possible.
After spending a good while coming up with a few different tones I went to record it in FL Studio as you would with an instrument. The only problem was… it would only record dry. Well fuck me. So, after an hour of pulling my hair out I ended up using Audacity, that’s right, GOD DAMN AUDACITY!!! A piece of FREE software did the trick and from there I was able to save the tones as a WAV file and with that I had all my guitar stems per section. Rinse and repeat.
Onto the highlights of each amp sim. With Omnisphere it’s not only your sample engine, but it’s also your amp sim. There’s no real room for expansion, but what you can do with what’s there is quite impressive.
The second step is to open Kontakt and Shreddage 2. Like I said before, all these samples were recorded dry so you need to use something to manipulate the sound. For this I use POD farm. Overall, this is an amazing piece of software that has a lot of really great sounds. The only drawback is that you have to use a Line 6 interface to act as a software activator. Unless they changed it. I usually use Line 6 for the more Metal/Djent sounds and it does that really well. It’s very thick, very modern, and very punchy.
Now onto the petulant Eleven rack! For me, I don’t see this as a piece of software that really does the heavy modern metal sound all that well. Yes, I have seen people make this sound just metal as hell, but again, for me, that’s not where I think it really shines. The Eleven rack has some really amazing “classic” tones that just so happen to work really well when it comes to Doom metal. I have to say if there is one feature of the Eleven rack that makes it work really well for Doom is the speaker breakup setting, which is one of the signature sounds of Doom metal. That setting basically emulates what it sounds like when the speakers in the cab are either old, loose, or cracking, Doing this can drastically change a good tone to a fully believable tone. The fuzz pedal that is in there is really good and the FX-loop on the Eleven rack makes it a good option if you, like me, have a specific sound you want to use that comes from a specific pedal.
And that, everyone, is how I went about getting the Doom metal guitar tones. Do I think it’s as authentic as really amps and guitars? No. Do I think it’s easier than having a vintage half stack, guitar, mic, and a place to play loud when you record it? Yes. Is it cheaper than the other option? Maybe. I got everything on sale, so I did alright moneywise. Am I saying this is a suitable and somewhat reasonable facsimile to the real thing? In this instance, I would say so. Sure, it’s not perfect, but it sounds like what it is supposed to be without having to track down a vintage HI-wat, matamp, or buying an Orange amp. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to do all of those things, but space and money are on short supply (Sooo, help this cat out and give me money!!1).
If anyone wants to see the settings that were used to get these tones go ahead and leave a comment below and I’ll make that happen!
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