Marshall Madness 1

Marshall Madness!

The goal here is to offer a comprehensive, experimentally controlled demonstration of the various programs’ Marshall models. All of them. Of which there are, oh, I don’t know, a lot. In order to obtain as much control over these as possible, as usual I’ve used the same dry track on all of them, and tweaked them by ear against clips of the real amp they’re modeling to try to obtain a realistic and useful sound. Since all of these programs address effects differently and that isn’t part of this review, I decided to use a couple of free VST effects on the Master rather than using individual programs’ effects (which would also seriously disadvantage Studio Devil Virtual Guitar Amp, as it is an amps-only modeler and has no effects). Therefor all of these tracks feature the same delay and reverb, provided by the awesome Classic series of plugins (Classic Delay, Classic Reverb). I was going for “subtle” reinforcement rather than overt wash-of-reverb or megadelay, which should let the amps themselves show what they can do more effectively. So without further ado, here we go, part one…

IK Multimedia Amplitube 2 Marshall JCM800

IK Multimedia Amplitube 2 Marshall JCM900

IK Multimedia Amplitube Metal Marshall JVM100

Native Instruments Guitar Rig 3 Marshall JCM800 (High VARIAC voltage & Bias adjusted hot)

Peavey ReValver MkIII Marshall JCM900

Studio Devil Virtual Guitar Amp Marshall JCM800

Studio Devil Virtual Guitar Amp Hot-Rodded Marshall JCM800 (kicks in an extra tube gain stage and does the bright-cap mod)

Almateq Overloud TH1 Marshall JCM900 (“High Input” global setting for +6db input gain on the amp)

Waves GTR Solo 1980 Marshall JMP

I’d like to apologize for the slight variance in track peak volume. I’m having difficulty getting my normalization method to function properly, and I am looking into better ways to do it. I will correct these files and re-upload them when I’ve got that accomplished, but for now there is a variance of about +/- 1.5db or so on the tracks. What you should be careful of, however, is thinking that the intro volume determines the track’s volume. In fact, that isn’t the case – the modeling of these amps in the different programs exhibit some differences, and one of the biggest and most noticeable differences is in how they react to playing dynamics. So if it sounds quieter off the bat, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be quiet at its peak volume, relative to the other tracks.

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2 Responses to Marshall Madness 1

  1. Dave Thomas says:

    It would be interesting to see an Analog Sims JCM900 and Softube Vinatage amp room modes in this shoot out…

    Any preferences/observations here?

    Personally I put an SD-1 in front of the JCM800/900.

    being doing some similar tests with Vintage Amp room and AnalogSims JCM900, I think the power amp stage is a little more realistic in Softubes vintage amp room.

  2. geareview says:

    I plan to make all of the old shootouts comprehensive – or, rather, to do most of them anew with the superior hardware and software that I have now. I can also mix in some analog Marshall-in-a-Box pedals, too, which should be fun.

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