Rumble Studio 40 vs Logic Pro X Bass Amps

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Berthos, Sep 30, 2020.


  1. Berthos

    Berthos

    Apr 22, 2011
    Australia
    I use Logic Pro X for recording in my home studio. I have used the built in bass amp sims quite successfully but think maybe they are a little limited--just the 3 amps are simulated. I find twiddling the virtual knobs on a virtual amp a bit ... something less than ideal.

    I'm toying with the idea of buying a Rumble Studio 40 to use for recording bass into Logic. Has anyone here used one of these for recording bass in Logic? How were the results? How does it compare to the bass sims in Logic?

    Any comments would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Droopy_TX

    Droopy_TX

    Jul 17, 2016
    Houston
    @Berthos, sorry for the delay in my responding to this query.

    I have used Logic Pro X (LPX) as my primary DAW for several (4+) years.

    I also own the Rumble Stage 800. The Stage 800 is the big brother of the Studio 40 you’re considering; but, from a modeling and USB/analog line out standpoint, they are identical.

    I am at a bit of a disadvantage in discussing this in significant specific detail right now, as my MacBook Pro is in the shop for repairs. So, I can’t reference the amp plugins and give you a model-by-model comparison; but, I can speak of my history and experiences in general terms...

    When I initially started using LPX, I used the Apple amp plugins that ship with the app and S-Gear amp plugins from Scuffham Amps. I found them both to be capable; but, somewhat limited. I don’t think the gain and overdrive functions resemble real amps well as newer modeling technology does, nor (of course) as real amps do.

    My only bass amp at the time was an old Line 6 LD-150 modeling amp. It was a nice amp for general usage in very small venues; but, its older modeling tech was a bit limited. It was still functional for recording via its analog line out into an audio interface. So, I used that amp when possible, and the plugins when more signal processing was necessary.

    Not long after, I picked up a Fender Bronco 40 (the spiritual and technological predecessor of the Studio 40). It came with 9 amp models and a modicum of effect. For deeper programming, it leveraged the Fuse app. It also had a USB line out; so, you could just plug it into the Mac or a USB hub, and LPX recognized it as an audio input. No audio interface required. I loved that little amp. Indeed, I still have it and use it from time to time for informal jams.

    But, time moves on; and so does Fender. New tech emerged. Support for the Bronco series (and the older Mustang amps) and the Fuse software waned.

    At end-2018, I was doing a lot of home recording. I was also in a band for which I supplied the PA, which was capable of supporting me playing with IEMs and no amp. Being a strong supporter of amp/cab modeling, and having been really happy with all my old Line 6 gear, I purchased a Line 6 HX Stomp as my primary “amp“ for both live and studio use.

    I am really happy with the Stomp. My only complaint is its (current) 6-block limitation. But another item it lack in features, is that it makes no sound by itself...;)

    Time marches onward. I left the aforementioned band, and joined a blues-rock power trio. The BL is old-school. Loves his powered mixer and passive speaker/monitor setup; but doesn’t run anything but the vocals and some kick through the mains.So, I needed an amp that’ll work for me in any venue short of a sound company doing the house.

    Enter, the Fender Rumble Stage 800.

    I really like this amp. I initially got just the combo; but soon added the matching extension cab. Wow, talk about power! And features...?

    The current firmware ships with 20 amp models, 26 cabinet models, and over 50 effects. Analog line outs for audio interfacing; digital line out for (stereo or mono) input directly via USB. Integration into LPX could not be simpler or more functional.

    So, from my experience, these are my thoughts and suggestions...

    Although, amp plugins lack the fidelity and subtleties of real amps and leading modeling tech, they are certainly good enough to be usable; especially for the bass. (I hate to say that; but, the truth is, bad models are much more apparent on guitars.)

    One powerful advantage that amp plugins offer is the option to “re-amp”. That is to say, your are recording the signal before it hits the amp. If you decide later you don’t like it, you can change amps. The HX Stomp offers very a similar option, in that one (pair) of its USB outputs is a dry, unboosted signal that (if recorded) can be reamp’d via a USB input into the Stomp. The Rumble Studio/Stage cannot re-amp. There is no USB input channel into the amp.

    However, the advantages of the Rumble Studio (and Stage) are: all the excellently modeled amps, cabinets, and effects; light-weight portability; analog and digital connectivity; and the fact the amp can be fully programmed both within the Tone app AND via the front panel. (No concerns about ongoing app support.).

    But, the biggest advantage is...
    It sounds great when you turn it up, all by itself.
    You don’t need to run it through a computer to hear it.

    So, my suggestion is: Get the amp. You’ll love it.
    And you’ll always have the plugins if you have reason to use them.

    TL;DR: It’s not too long. Read it from the top. :laugh:

    Hope this helps.
     
    ShawnG and G-Dog like this.
  3. Berthos

    Berthos

    Apr 22, 2011
    Australia
    Thank you very much for taking the time to provide me with such a detailed answer. It was all either useful or interesting, mostly both.

    That the Rumble recordings cannot be re-amped hadn't occurred to me. I could just play it again with a different sound of course.

    Rumble Studio 40 added to the shopping list.
     
    Droopy_TX and G-Dog like this.
  4. Berthos

    Berthos

    Apr 22, 2011
    Australia
    Thinking a bit more about re-amping using the Studio 40, this could be done fairly easily it seems to me, like this ...

    The S40 has a pre-out. Record the pre-out signal on a different track (at the same time you record the modelled signal received via USB). You could, of course, re-amp that signal using the amp plugins in Logic.

    You could also send the recorded pre-amp track back to the S40 either directly into the Rumble's input (watch the levels!) or via an impedance matching device. There might be a slight latency introduced to the bass track doing this but if it was detectable it could be easily rectified in Logic.

    Using this method you could actually make adjustments to the amp modelling and effects used on the fly. Loop Logic and twiddle away to your heart's content until you find the perfect sound for the song, then hit record. You could easily also use different modelling at different points in the song.

    The more I think about this the more I think this is a good way of doing things. You could use the Studio 40 as a plug-in, but a physical one rather a software one.

    You could use this approach with any Rumble, (or any amp). The amp you are using doesn't even need to have a pre-out. You could just record the raw bass track (guitar, keyboard, whatever) by plugging straight into Logic then send that off to the amp. You could record the amp directly or using microphones. I'm sure I would not be the first person to have thought of this.
     
  5. Droopy_TX

    Droopy_TX

    Jul 17, 2016
    Houston
    That sounds like possible, though convoluted, approach. I think I’d just be tempted to follow your original approach of just re-recording, unless it’s a performance that’s really difficult to repeat.

    Although it’s really easy on the Stomp, and I usually record its dry signal, I’ve used it only occasionally.

    Since getting the Rumble Stage, I use it the majority of time to record due to the quality of the amp models and cabs quality. So, I usually just take the time to get a good tone that (hopefully) is only going to require EQing to sit well in the mix.
     
  6. Berthos

    Berthos

    Apr 22, 2011
    Australia
    I have done a little more research on re-amping. This from an ad for a 'reamping box':

    For years, Reamping has been the 'secret weapon' for countless recordings by the biggest names in the business! Few realize that recording engineers not only Reamp guitars, but often Reamp bass, keyboards, drums and even voice as a means to bring creative new tones and sonic signatures to their music.

    Reamping has many benefits. You start by recording a clean track and concentrate on capturing the best musical performance. Once the magic has been captured, send the clean track back to the amps and effects and adjust the sound to suit. No more hours of repetition for the guitarist, no more rushed jobs due to scheduling, and best of all, you do not have to commit to the sound of the track. You can modify the tone as the recording progresses while using real amps, effects and natural ambiance for the most organic tone.
    Well, I never knew.
     
  7. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Bring Back Edit/Delete Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    Re-amping is useful, but it’s also great to get it right the first time. Many folks record a direct track along with an amp track (of one form or another) and use whatever sounds best when it’s all said and done.

    IMO the performance benefits from the performer having the feel of the amp during the take.

    Some engineers can do pretty amazing things with a clean source plus an amp or re-amp path.
     
  8. G-Dog

    G-Dog What a fun place! Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2016

    Excellent point there, Digi. And, fortunately, the Rumble Studio 40 (& Stage 800) facilitate that with both Pre- and Post- EQ line outs by default.

    PSX_20201020_100227.jpg
    .
     
  9. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    These posts seem to indicate that you don't really understand what reamping is.

    This is not reamping. This is simply processing something in the box. Nothing wrong with it, but reamping happens in the analog domain, not once things are in the box.

    Of course the Rumble recordings could be reamped. Provided you have sufficient outputs on the downstream end of the DA stage, a reamp box, cables and a means of capturing the signal ahead of the AD stage (i.e. amp/cab and a mic, or a DI box) then you can reamp whatever you want.
     
  10. Berthos

    Berthos

    Apr 22, 2011
    Australia
    I understand exactly what reamping is. I say it doesn't matter whether the reamping is done using virtual amps within a DAW or amps which have a physical presence outside of the DAW, it's still reamping. Any distinction between those two methods is entirely arbitrary and illogical. Given that a Studio 40 is a digital modelling amp, why would using one of those be reamping but the use of a digital modelling amp within a DAW is not?

    With respect to your second comment, to send a recording of a guitar sound which has already been through the preamp and any onboard effects of an amp (which is what I was referring to when I said a 'Rumble recording'), back to the Rumble (or some other amp)and run that through the amp again is not what reamping is about. Reamping uses a recording of the bass (or whatever) which has not already been run through an amp--for example, from the pre-amp out on a Rumble Studio--that was recorded on a separate track in a DAW at the same time the original signal from the amp was recorded. That dry signal is then sent to the amp and recorded again (reamped) using different settings on the amp (or a different amp).
     
  11. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    This is exactly what I was getting at. Reamping is a process that allows you to modify something in the analog domain after it has been recorded. Anything in the box is not reamping, it’s simply DSP.

    What reamping is about is analog domain modifications to a signal after the fact. Plain and simple.
     
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    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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