Author Topic: A few questions regarding software amps.  (Read 1457 times)

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Offline mtthieu

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A few questions regarding software amps.
« on: August 27, 2020, 04:46:52 pm »
Hello guys!
I'm looking to start seriously learning the guitar. At my parents house, there is an acoustic guitar which i've been trying to teach myself with Justin's course. However as I'm not there often but want to seriously start learning, I'm thinking of buying myself an electric guitar.

Regarding the genre I'd like to play, I'm a huge fan of David Gilmour, so we could say that would be my "aim". I like the sort of "ethereal sounding" guitars; so other artists like Skinshape.
I need to mention this is my first guitar and I am on a big budget.

Anyway, I am currently looking at the "Squier Bullet Mustang HH". Would it be one that could potentially work for this?

Now, in Justin's guitar buying guide he mentions that buying an amp is not really necessary and that one can do pretty well with software. This seems quite controversial from what I've read but everything related to "software amps" is about recording, however, I'm really looking to simply learn in my bedroom and I'd say my laptop could handle it if performance is something that matters.

If so, what would be a good "audio interface" (something very cheap if possible) or would I be fine using my integrated audio interface of my PC? Could they substitute an amp?

Thank you guys!

Offline Majik

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #1 on: August 27, 2020, 05:32:39 pm »
Software amps can be fine. I personally don't recommend them for anything but recording because:

1. They can be a hassle, as there is always some latency and getting the latency low enough to be manageable can be difficult (and having a powerful laptop does not normally reduce the latency). There can be problems with drivers, etc.

2. They are a barrier to playing as you have to set your computer up before you can start playing. With an amp, you just flick the power switch and it's ready in seconds.

3.The audio from many PC speaker setups (and all laptop speakers) is rubbish and uninspiring.

That being said, they work for a lot of people. You will need an audio interface with an instrument input. Your laptop audio won't work. Something like this:

Behringer UMC-22

You will also need some amp software. I can't recommend anything here, but I'm sure others can,

Alternatively, get something like the Blackstar Fly 3 Mini amp, although that has limited effects, or a Zoom G1X or similar, and use it with headphones.

Cheers,

Keith

Offline joueur de guitare

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #2 on: August 27, 2020, 11:36:41 pm »
Regarding the guitar. Avoid the Bullet series, cheap and nasty.

The lowest entry level Squier worth bothering with is the Affinity.

 The Standard has been discontinued, although there are probably some still around. The Standard seems to have been replaced by the Contemporary series. I haven't seen one so can't comment.

The Classic Vibe series is well worth the money.

Do not buy a pack (guitar and amp bundle)
Guitars. Fender Highway 1 Tele: Fender Shortboard LE Mustang: Ibanez AS73 semi-hollow: Ibanez SR370 bass: Squier Affinity Strat: Squier Jagmaster.

Offline nigec

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2020, 08:48:34 am »
I have a classic vibe and its very good

We recently moved house and I started using Amplitube as my regular amp is in storage, and I agree with  Majik its not a good substitute  as you need to be able to set it up properly and sounds bland on a laptop.  maybe with a decent usb lead and a lot of fiddling it might of been ok
I bought a cheap practice amp and it sounds fine in the space I practice in, the lack of features means I focus more on accuracy

I have a Fender Mustang V1 amp as my main amp, like my Strat its 8 years old and still going strong, it has software application to create effects, inbuilt tuner, pre programmed effects I think Justin has tested one? the V2 is about £100 and its plenty loud enough! and it has a inbuilt treble booster... I need the v2 lol

« Last Edit: August 30, 2020, 10:19:37 am by nigec »
Guitars:  Hofner Bass, Squier classic vibe Stratocaster; Fender look alike Jazz bass from a kit, Cigarbox 3 string, Uke, Mandolin and the devil loves a tryer!

Offline DarrellW

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2020, 04:47:33 pm »
If you’ve got an iPhone or iPad GarageBand is free and there are a few reasonably priced interfaces that work well. The Bullet Mustang is probably the best of the Bullet range but there are some very much better alternatives made by Harley Benton from Thomann for very little more money - for example:  https://m.thomann.de/gb/harley_benton_st_90sa_swamp_ash_dlx_series.htm?o=34&search=1598802345
Still here, still learning and still a monumentally stubborn old f4rt 😂

Offline craigmill

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2020, 11:46:27 am »
Maybe the Spark amp by Positive Grid will give you best of both worlds - and it’s meant to be a great learning tool: https://www.positivegrid.com/spark#


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Offline Majik

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Re: A few questions regarding software amps.
« Reply #6 on: August 31, 2020, 01:33:03 pm »
I suspect the Spark is out of his budget, and the delivery delays on it have been significant, so he could be waiting for weeks or months for one.

So far, I have been relatively impressed with the sound and range of tones available on mine, but not really that impressed with the learning tools. They are all, actually, app based meaning that you could, theoretically, add a.similar capability to any Bluetooth enabled amp,.like the Yamaha THR.

Cheers,

Keith

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