Using my Radial X-Amp, I’ve ran a line out from my Presonus Firestudio to the Radial X-Amp. That ran into either a Rivera Knucklehead or a Peavey 5150. I tossed my Royer R121 in front of my 1×12 cabinet with a brand new Hellatone 30 (I blew my Celestion G12H30) into my Vintech 1272 into a Distressor EL-8x and into a Mytek AD96. I guess I pulled out all the big guns for this one. (Of course, the Recording Gear Quiz tested just how big these guns really are).
I had some drums I threw together quickly that triggered the Steven Slate Drum samples and I used Quantum Leap XP Hardcore Bass for the bass guitar.
From there it was off to the races playing with the amps.
Previous Multiple Amp Issues
In the past I’ve never been too found of recording more than one amp at the same time. The biggest reason for this is my facility is not set up for it properly. I don’t have that much isolation from my control room and my live room. My guitar fort does help, but I can’t hold two amps. Without being able to hear what is really going on with each individual amp it’s hard to make decisions on what amp should do what. On top of that the extra volume is just gonna push my luck with the neighbors a wee bit further.
I never know if I’m better off setting both amps to sound their best, setting one amp to be thin and the other to be thick, or setting one with too much gain or not enough gain. It is always a tricky mess and I just never know where to start.
When I did try multiple amps, I always had problems getting the amps / mics in phase. Maybe I’m a bit militant about phase but I don’t think it’s possible to go through the Michael Wagener Workshop without becoming robo anal about the phase relationship between multiple sources.
Because setting up such a rig takes quite a bit of time while the guitar player was waiting on me, I decided it was best to keep it simple stupid. Now that I have the freedom to go into hardcore engineer mode with no regard for the performance, I feel like I can be more creative, try more daring ideas, and come out with better tones. Before, the exact opposite was true.
So, there were some hurdles that made it really tough to ever benefit from using multiple amps simultaneously.
Radial X-Amp and Multiple Amps
Now that I have the ability to run the same performance (recorded with DI) back through an amp, I can mic up one amp at a time and record a track with each amp. This is about as close as it gets to recording multiple amps.. I can use the same mic and mic placement so this guarantees that my side of the fence will be in phase. An amp can still be out of phase. In fact, it appears that my 5150 and Rivera Knucklehead have opposite polarity which is easily fixed by pressing the phase/polarity button either on the X-amp or in my recording software.
Does It Work?
So does using multiple amps “simultaneously” really make metal guitar tracks sound huge?
Find out here in the Member’s Only section of Recording Review.
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