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Guitar Effects


If you didn’t know, my primary instrument is guitar.  Its also a bit of a paradox for as good as I am at guitar I’m absolutely terrible at picking out effects for it.  Add that into the shear amount of effects and tweaking I do on synthesizers and it makes even less sense.


Classical or flamenco sounding guitar is relatively easy to make sound good.  Just play the part perfectly and then add some decent reverb and a slight EQ if there is any accompaniment.  Heck, I think I did an okay job on Missing Dead and Breathe for the guitar.  I suppose guitar distortion is my anathema.  I have a need for it to sound brutal, yet clean.  Polished if you will.


Lately I’ve been experimenting with Native Instruments Guitar Rig 4.  First off, the program is actually fantastic for vocals.  Although I have not experimented actually recording said vocals, I have had several singers jam with Guitar Rig 4 while I did some instrumental things that had favorable results.  The thing that is driving me crazy is I have this soundtrack piece I have to do.  And it needs heavy, distorted guitars but for the life of me I can’t find a distortion I’m entirely happy with.


Guitar Rig 4 does have a recording program in it but I can’t for the life of me get it work in any sort of sane way.  I might be too curmudgeonly for it.  Anyway I decided to bypass the whole bit by using Kontrol Audio 1 with my laptop and sending that out to the RME so I can just record with my main computer.  Unfortunately my laptop seems to cut out every 45 seconds or so and then cut back in.  Its very strange especially since Guitar Rig hovers at around %30 CPU usage.  I’ve experimented with the ASIO settings to no avail although I have found I can actually delay the audio so I never am quite sure what I’m playing on the guitar.


The trouble with layering effects on guitar is you can’t do it after the fact.  Well you can but it will more than likely sound like shit.  There are certain reactions that live effects have that after effects do not.


But who knows?  Maybe its just me.  My biggest problem is oftentimes on guitar I’m too technical for my own good.  This usually results in either overly simple guitar riffs or overly complex guitar riffs.  I’ve gotten much better at just recording whatever sounds good, I just can’t quite the sound down though.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Specter permalink
    12/06/2010 20:23

    It’s funny because we always use Guitar Rig 4 to play with effects for vocals hehehehe.

    I think you do just fine with guitar, and yes it sounds better when you do it… …. Organically… Or… Whatever….


    We’ll just call it “orgcoustically”


    Heh. You said curmudgeonly….

    Also, the laptop cut out on me using that tiny interface whilst doing the guitar lesson – Cut vocals and audio every now and again… Strange…


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