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Old 01-28-2020, 04:01 PM
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Doug Young Doug Young is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Mountain View, CA
Posts: 8,374

It's cool to see people experimenting with this stuff, and both Jon and Cuki are doing some great work. I sent Jon a pickup/mic example to use to see what his process would do with a different guitar. The results are quite interesting. I loaded his IR into my TwoNotes IR pedal and recorded directly from my pedal board:

Here's an initial comparison of 1) the raw pickup, 2) Jon's process, and 3) ToneDexter (Character 2), just for comparison:

To my ear, Jon's is much more mic-like than the pickup, but does have those "resonances" that we often hear with IRs, and that may cause issues at volume, and sound a bit distant as well.

Looking at the waveforms is also interesting. Here's the waveforms for the above three samples:


(The waveforms look stereo but they're actually mono - dual mono with the same thing on both sides)

Notice how different Jon's IR looks compared to either the pickup or ToneDexter. In fact, it looks a lot like the pure mic looks:


BTW, I always find mono mic recordings to sound "washy" as well, so I think to some extent, Jon's approach is kind of capturing what's there. ToneDexter on the other hand must be doing some more interesting things to keep the pickup from sounding so distant. BTW, the above example for ToneDexter is the full Character 2 setting, no blend, so this is a setting that some people think is "too much", tho it usually sounds just fine to me.

I decided to see if I could do a blend with Jon's IR to reduce the resonances. Here's an IR that is basically a 50% blend (The Two Notes pedal lets me load 2 IRs and blend them):

Seems much better to me, and pretty usable as a live sound, I suspect (tho I've only listened to these at home). To the extent that the visual of the waveform tells us anything, here's how the 50/50 blend looks:


After sharing these with Jon, Cuki and he consulted, and Jon used Cuki's software to generate an IR for me, from the same inputs. Here's how that sounds:

I think this one sounds pretty good.

Finally, for a slightly more real-world test, here's how I'd actually use any of these. I always blend in a mic, so here's the direct output of my pedal board with the IRs (Jon's 50/50 blend, Cuki's IR, ToneDexter CH2) with the internal mic added and using my Sunnaudio preamp. There's some subtle interaction going on between these IRs and my mic, probably due to phase differences, and also that the basic IRs may not be precisely level-matched in the pedal board, so the mic/pickup balance varies a little bit.

These are all just "at home", direct recordings, of course, so they might behave a bit different thru a PA, tho in my experience using ToneDexter I've not heard a big difference. As long as the PA is decent, this (the TD snippet) is the sound I hear.
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