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Tube Challenge IV - REDDI vs VT

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JimmyM, Jun 27, 2012.


Which sounds most like a tube amp?

Poll closed Jun 30, 2012.
  1. Test 1

    36 vote(s)
    26.9%
  2. Test 2

    98 vote(s)
    73.1%
  1. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    This is a fun one, not only because it's been a couple years since I did one of these, but because this is the first time I ever did one with a DI line instead of mic'ed cabs.

    The contestants:

    A-Designs REDDI Tube DI
    Tech 21 VT Bass Deluxe

    In case you're not familiar with these excellent products, the VT Deluxe is a programmable version of the well-loved VT Bass pedal, which is known for its ability to mimic the sounds of Ampeg tube amps. The REDDI, while not being a full-on tube amp, is a DI that's inspired by the Ampeg B-15, and it contains a tube, a big iron power transformer, and a big iron output transformer, and for my money, sounds identical to a B-15 set for near flat response being DI'd through the speaker out.

    I recorded 3 samples for each device using my trusty 76 Precision with dead D'addario Chromes. Each were recorded directly into my M-Audio Audiophile 2496 soundcard (I EQ'd the VTD to sound as close as I could to the REDDI using its own EQ section), and the only processing done was to give the REDDI track an EQ similar to the speaker sim rolloffs in the VT. To be as fair as I could, I then applied the exact same EQ to the VT track. I did no normalizing or compression or any of that stuff.

    Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to vote for the one you think sounds most like a tube amp, test 1 or test 2. I've included no "carrots" option...you MUST decide!

    Here am da trax:




    Results as soon as enough people have voted, probably by Friday.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 16, 2014
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Whoa, waittaminit... What?
    You EQ'd the VTD to match the Reddi, then EQ'd the Reddi to match the VTD, then applied the same EQ to the VTD?
    :D
    Please clarify.
     
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    OK, here it is in chronological order...

    ---I recorded the REDDI.

    ---I set the knobs on the VTD to sound as close as I could get to the REDDI's natural voicing since it had knobs and the REDDI didn't, and then I recorded the VTD.

    ---I then added an EQ plugin to each. I EQ'd the REDDI to have the speaker sim rolloffs that the VTD has, then applied it to the VTD track as well so it didn't have an unfair advantage.

    Simple.
     
  4. vedi

    vedi

    Sep 16, 2008
    Luxembourg, EU
    without going into discussion about how tube amps sound - I voted nr. 2, I like it more.

    best regards, V.
     
  5. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    But doesn't that mean the VTD got speaker sim'd twice?
     
  6. Aaron_D

    Aaron_D

    May 9, 2010
    Tallahassee, FL
    an active bass would be very interesting if you ever get the chance. those clips sound VERY similar!!! 2 sounds deeper to me and a little tubier....
     
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Sigh...yes it does. But the only other alternative was to add processing to the REDDI and not add it to the VTD, thus making it an unfair test slanted toward the VTD. And if I hadn't added it, it would be a dead giveaway which one was which because the REDDI puts out a full range signal.

    So now can we proceed with the voting? Thank you ;)
     
  8. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I have...the results were still the same to my ears.
     
  9. I chose #2 because it sounded fuller and tubey.
     
  10. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    I would like 1 the best if you rebias the tube modeler :)
     
  11. carlis

    carlis

    Dec 28, 2005
    Honestly, both recordings are compromised by the dead strings to some extent. It would have been better should you replaced with a new set in the first place...

    Back to the topic, I vote test 2 because it sounds more "tube amp" to me, though it also sounds heavily EQed. I believe test 1 is recorded via REDDI and test 2 tech 21.

    Let's see how it comes out.
     
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Nothing was compromised whatsoever. It's the exact same bass with the exact same strings. I just happened to choose a bass with strings you don't like. But those are the strings that I like, and it's my test.

    I will, however, be happy to repeat this test with whatever strings you want as long you supply the strings and pay me $350 for my time ;)
     
    Jinglesmeowmeow likes this.
  13. PhatRon

    PhatRon I blow bass

    Feb 29, 2012
    Lake Stevens, Wa.
    though there is no right or wrong answer, I choose door #2. I certainly like the sound of 2 better. I am actually saving up for a reddi for our studio so I am anxious to know which track it is.
     
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    LOL Mark! That was a good one!
     
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Well there is a wrong answer ;) I mean, which one you like the most is a matter of taste, but there's definitely a wrong answer.
     
  16. dukeorock

    dukeorock Owner BNA Audio Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2011
    Nashville, TN
    Authorized greenboy designs builder/Owner of BNA Audio
    What's wrong with the strings and what's that got to do with this test? Same bass, same strings, two tracks to listen to, then decide. I thought the strings and bass sounded awesome...sadly, I thought both tracks sounded good for different reasons
     
  17. Oobly

    Oobly

    Jun 19, 2008
    This is a great comparison, well executed.

    Old flats on a P sound great through any amp, tube or otherwise, IMHO.

    I voted number 2 sounds more like a tube amp. Very interested in the outcome of this. Particularly if I am wrong :D
     
  18. carlis

    carlis

    Dec 28, 2005
    No offense, I just prefer recording with new strings, and you're right, the tests have nothing to do with the strings be it new or old.
     
  19. arai

    arai Banned

    Jul 16, 2007
    I would agree with this
     
  20. René_Julien

    René_Julien

    Jun 26, 2008
    Belgium
    Definately number 2 is better to my ears. It sounded fuller and richer.

    My guess is that number 2 is the REDDI.
    I could be dead on right, or dead on wrong.

    Obviously.
     

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