Why Should We Choose Virtual Amps?
A good quality guitar amp is incredibly important to get a good sound. What separates a good and bad amp is the variety of tones it provides to the guitarist, as well as the sound it produces. Of course, guitar pedals can be used to make up for the lack of tonal diversity. However, cluttering cables or paying for each pedal is not for every guitarist. Especially if you are a new guitarist and do not want to spend money on anything, this may even turn into an inextricable problem. This is where virtual guitar amps come in.
On the other hand, not being able to get the sound of the actual tone you want to play from the amp in your hand can even turn you off from the guitar, and this is why guitarists often prefer guitar amps or virtual amps with a wide range of tones, even if they sound worse. But there are still some problems that need to be resolved.
The most important of these is mobility. You can only take your guitar and guitar pedals for stage shows. Thanks to your pedals, you can use the amps on the stage, and you can catch the tone you want, and this will save you from carrying the amp. But you can’t have all the pedals or carry them all with you, right? This is when the importance and convenience of virtual amps come into play.
What is a Virtual Amp, and What Does It Do?
A virtual amp is an emulation created by combining many devices such as power amps, preamps, speakers, cabinets, and microphones in a computer environment. Imagine a wonderful studio with lots of amps, cabinets, rack gear, an extensive microphone closet, and a room with high-quality acoustics. Virtual amps combine all these components to create a studio on your computer through virtual amp software. By connecting your guitar or other instruments to your computer, you can use any equipment you want with the interfaces of this virtual amp software.
On the other hand, just like real guitar pedals, these virtual amps have a variety of pedals. It is also possible to add effects such as reverb, delay, distortion, fuzz, and overdrive to your music. The variety of these effect pedals in virtual amp software is perhaps one of the biggest reasons virtual amps are preferred. On the other hand, virtual amps are truly virtual in the literal sense. They require almost no hardware. Sounds pretty good, right? Let’s take a look at the advantages of owning a virtual guitar amp.
Advantages of Using Virtual Amps
It’s a real benefactor for those who know how to use a virtual guitar amp. The moment you discover what a virtual amp can do, the doors of a completely different world open for you. Because a virtual amp can do things beyond what a real guitar amp can do. Of course, there are no rules, as there are no hardware constraints on the virtual amp, allowing you to create any sound you want. After this tonal flexibility you’ve encountered, I’m sure you won’t want to return to a standard tube or solid-state amp again.
1. Comfort and Mobility:
Perhaps the greatest convenience of virtual amps is that you can use them wherever you want, whenever you want. After all, you don’t always play the guitar in the same place. It shouldn’t be very pleasant to carry around lbs of amps with you on a trip, at a campsite, perhaps for a little concert on the street with your friends. On top of that, not only the amp will save the job, but you will also need to carry pedals and cabinets alongside the guitar you already carry. How burdensome, right? However, you can enjoy your music anytime, anywhere with a virtual amp installed on your computer, a small sound card, maybe a MIDI keyboard that you can take with you according to your preference.
On the other hand, even if you do not have a studio environment where you can bring your amps or pedals and set up, you can still catch the perfect tones with just your virtual amp. Either way, with the virtual amp, you’ll be able to get an extensive range of tones for much less than a real equipment setup. Considering the virtual amps, which have very reasonable prices, it seems that we have no chance to discredit virtual amps. Of course, for manual lovers, touching the knobs and feeling the cables may be more pleasant, but I bet you will not even look for them when you get used to this comfort.
Advantages of Using Virtual Amps | 2. Doing Stereo in the Right Way
When you use a real guitar amp, it is necessary to microphone the amp while recording. And believe me, it’s uncomfortable to mic two speakers in a guitar amp. Especially if you are trying to capture two speakers from the same cabinet, dealing with a muddy sound and phase cancellation is inevitable. The resonance between the speakers, believe me, infuriates the sound engineer and even the musicians. That’s why you can often witness that more than one microphone is used, even for a single speaker. Of course, you can get rid of this problem with additional speakers, but using additional speakers will prevent you from catching a pure tone in the studio.
Instead of miking speakers and tackling cabinets, why not use a system that was designed from the ground up for stereo sound? Virtual amps eliminate all these problems. Whether stereo or mono, virtual amps can easily provide you with the perfect studio environment so you can easily catch the tone you want effortlessly. Remember, all you need is a software, a computer, and a sound card.
3. Swap Between Cabs Easily
Guitarists are always on the hunt for a good guitar cabinet. Unfortunately, few people can afford high-end guitar equipment. Unfortunately, they only have one or two at most. That’s why they have to make do with whatever is best at that moment. So, do we still have to suffer this torture in the year we came? We know very well that the answer to this question is no.
Virtual amps allow you to switch to a different cabinet whenever you want, instead of making do with what’s best at the moment. Various virtual guitar rigs and built-in Impulse Response loaders allow musicians to create and use their own Impulse Response collections. On the other hand, these Impulse Response collections can be anything you want. This way, if you’re always on the hunt for new sounds, you can catch sounds that are hard to find and quite unique in virtual amps. Virtual amp means freedom to sounds!
Advantages of Using Virtual Amps | 4. Custom Effect Pedals
Have you ever bought a guitar pedal for free when you buy an amp from anywhere? Or let’s say the salesperson made you such an offer, but would this offer promise you unlimited guitar pedals? I do not think so. We all know that virtual amps alone will not get you the sound you want for your guitar or bass. It will be like connecting your guitar to an amp that has no tonal knob on it. That’s why virtual amp software offers not only amps but also guitar effects pedals alongside the amp.
Of course, these pedals will be prepared in accordance with the tone of the amp you are using. And a single software will prepare it and put it in front of you without any trouble. Imagine having a guitar mechanic individually tweaking your pedals to match the tone of each of your amps. How tedious and costly! However, you do not have such a problem with virtual amps. And virtual amps can run all the effects that you want. Using the delay, reverb, overdrive, fuzz, and even the wah pedal with a few small touches is possible. Especially when you start to create your custom tones, it becomes an inedible experience. If you still don’t own a virtual amp and are missing out on this experience, I’m incredibly sorry on your behalf!
5. Always Take Control
No matter where you use your virtual amp, being able to change the settings is very important. We all know that guitarists and sound engineers always want to have control over their guitar tone. Especially when it comes to guitar tone, good modifying is the only thing that makes a guitarist a real guitarist. It is always recommended to adjust your effects pedals before, during, and after recording. You can use the MIDI controller to have full control and make all the adjustments from start to finish. As guitarists, a MIDI pedal will come in handy. One advantage of the MIDI pedal stands out here. When you use a physical pedal, it takes a lot of time to adjust your settings.
On the other hand, your settings may not always stay the same. It can be not easy to copy or reuse the tones you have prepared. But it’s pretty easy to do in a virtual amp. With just a click of a button, you can have your MIDI controller find the settings you’ve already made. You can save the desired setting and assign it to a MIDI channel and use it again whenever you want. This way, you can have multiple settings depending on your MIDI pedal and switch to the channel you want. However, there is a situation where virtual amps are generally used on laptops or tablets. In this case, using a MIDI footswitch is unlikely. So, using a BluetoothMIDI Controller will give you even more, peace of mind. Just a suggestion!
Why Should We Choose Virtual Amps? | Summarize
To summarize, owning a virtual amp will give you many advantages. Of course, you can have a physical amp and enjoy using it. Maybe you feel like you’re in the 70s and 80s and use a vintage amp. Of course, you can. But we all know that no one wants to carry amps wherever they go. Or think about it, carrying amps everywhere you go can also damage them. On the other hand, the number of guitar pedals you can own and bring with you is pretty limited.
You can equip your entire home with guitar pedals. However, the venue owner where you take the stage will not be very keen on filling the platform with pedals. I am sure that the owner of the studio where you record will have the same opinion as to the owner of the venue. And individually, who doesn’t want to have unlimited pedals and play even the hardest to reach tones? Effect pedals in virtual amps save you from all these troubles at once. You can create an outstanding stage performance with your guitar, laptop or tablet, instrument cable, a MIDI footswitch. Not to mention the joy of playing at home or in the studio anymore.
Yes, maybe virtual amps may not be as popular as physical amps. Perhaps it’s not as attractive as it looks. However, when we make a general comparison, we can say that virtual amps are very attractive for your pocket. A good real guitar amp costs around $800, while a virtual amp costs around $100-200 on average. In my opinion, don’t try to show off your money! On the other hand, when you close your eyes and listen to a real amp and a virtual amp, you will never, ever understand the difference because there is no difference!
On the contrary, as mentioned above, it is possible to catch interesting sounds with many different guitar tones and surprise those around you. I think all this should now satisfy you. If we compare, virtual amps seem to be ahead in every lane in terms of their advantages. The virtual amp is the best, especially for a home studio. Because when you use virtual amp software, you don’t have to worry about room acoustics, microphone, and noise.
So don’t stop and start doing your research. Find yourself a virtual amp before it’s too late to keep up with the new era!
Now, how to get the guitar tone you want?
Advancing your way throughout the guitar journey is a wholistic process which includes two main pillars: 1. Improving your playing skills; 2. Tweaking the guitar effects and amps to shape your guitar sound.
We all have a guitarist idol that we dig the sound of, right?
Getting the guitar sound of your favorite guitarists/band can be very costly and frustrating. It can require years of expertise to achieve your desired guitar tone.
Don’t worry, you don’t actually have to spend that much money and effort to get any guitar tone you want. Deplike Guitar FX Amp Sim suite plug-in got you covered on all Windows, macOS, iOS and Android devices. All you have to do is plug your guitar and play!