Podfarm vs. Amplitube vs. Guitar Rig

Posted on

Abomb Muchbaby
Member Since: Jul 02, 2009

Hey guys,

I see a lot of people have a high opinion of Line 6 podfarm. Does anyone have any experience with amplitube or guitar rig? I would like to get a comparison before dropping the dough on the podfarm. If it isn't going to be much of an updgrade, I think I will save my $$.

I record through a presonus firepod. So that would be my preamp I guess.



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Abomb Muchbaby
Since: Jul 02, 2009

Feb 17, 2010 11:28 am

Also too, I will say that I am not hugely impressed by either of the aforementioned plugins, with amplitube edging out guitar rig slightly.

Since: Sep 30, 2009

Feb 17, 2010 11:51 am

I don't think many people on this forum have much experience with amplitube or guitar rig. I imagine they do their job quite well, but PodFarm has been proven on this forum to be a powerful tool for home recording.

I would actually assume podfarm would be better than the other two as well, simply because Line 6 is a company devoted to guitar amp modeling. That and FX, is pretty much all that line 6 really does. And because of that i would ASSUME (i know, i'm making an *** out of u & me) that line 6 has thrown a very good deal of resources into researching guitar and bass amp modeling, and have gotten quite good. Where as NI and IK have probably spent more resources into VSTi's and such, so their guitar software may be good, but likely not as good as Pod Farm.

Again, that is pure speculation on my part. Just a thought in my head.

Hopefully someone here will have had experience with the other programs you mentioned. One more piece of advice however, don't just mess around with the modeling software for half an hour browsing presents and think pod farm sucks. Just like anything else recording, you have to learn how to use it. You've got to tweak it a bit. That said, in my experience you don't have to do as much tweaking or learning as you do when actually micing an amp, so its not that bad really. Just record a simple chord progression or lead part, loop it, and go threw the presents and all the individual amps. Mix and match cabnits, muck around with the EQ settings. And maybe even keep notes of what amps you really like. This will help you a lot. Pod farm can do just about any style of music quite well if you take your time

Since: Apr 03, 2002

Feb 17, 2010 11:54 am

I hated Guitar Rig...I got a review copy from NI a while back and sent it back saying that they REALLY don't want me to write my personal review on it. It was a nightmare to set up and get running.

I'm sure it's improved since, but still.

Amplitube I think is pretty darn cool, decent array of sounds, even the lite bundled versions have 2 or 3 decent models, clean and dirty sounds and such...

All in all, I'll take Line 6's modeling over anything else...though that free modeler, "The Green Machine" from Wurr Engineering I thought was kinda cool.

Abomb Muchbaby
Since: Jul 02, 2009

Feb 17, 2010 01:09 pm

@ Fragile-
I have to admit that I probably haven't given it enough of a chance... I will typically mess around with the amp settings and stuff, but pretty much anything I find in guitar rig just adds ridiculous noise and offensive frequencies. Amplitube seems much better, maybe I will try working my way around that a bit more first.

@ db,
Haha. I hear ya on guitar rig. I will check out the green machine too, that sounds interesting. thanks for your input gents...

hey one more thing, would it EVER make sense to record an amp and then apply these programs, or is this just strictly for when you are playing into your interface? Thanks.

Since: Apr 03, 2002

Feb 17, 2010 01:13 pm

If you like the sound of it, well, that makes it make sense.

Since: Sep 30, 2009

Feb 17, 2010 01:42 pm

Oh you already have guitar rig and amplitude? Ya, i'd imagine you could get a good tone out of it eventually, probably wouldn't be worth more of your money to buy Pod Farm. And like dB said. if you like it, go for it. Might as well try it. I doubt you'll have much luck with the guitar amp models, being as they're designed specifically for that muddy pickup sound strait from a guitar instead of a mic (i could be wrong) but the preamp models may help clean your sound up even more. Not to mention all the delays, chorus, and other FX.

Since: Feb 07, 2009

Feb 17, 2010 06:15 pm

a great place to keep up with the newest in Amp Sims is guitarampmodeling.com - I recommend Lepou's Plugins:


also Acmebargigs stuff:


These are all FREE Plug-ins (actually Acme's newest "SHRED" has a standalone too) and most are Heads only so download a cab simulator like LePous' "LeCab" to simulate the speaker cabs - I believe it comes with the Impulses already loaded but you can load any Impulse resonse you want and Guitarampmoseling has tons to download (Cab Impulses) - I, and a lot of other computer guitarists, feel these are better than most all the commercial amp sims out there and THEY'RE FREE!

Prince CZAR-ming
Since: Apr 08, 2004

Feb 17, 2010 06:32 pm

hey one more thing, would it EVER make sense to record an amp and then apply these programs, or is this just strictly for when you are playing into your interface? Thanks.

I don't think there's any real rules regarding such things. You could play through an amp to get the basic clean down, then pump that into GR or Amp or PF and see what you get. It could be way cool, or tre' drule =).

I guess it's worth a shot, if you've got the inclination and time to test.

I think you'd be amazed at what people to for audio content. Some of it is pretty weird.

Typo Szar
Since: Jul 04, 2002

Feb 17, 2010 10:00 pm

I actually Amplitube more than Line 6 (HERESY!) just sound wise. I know there are alot more advantages to Line 6 since the company seems dedicated to dominating the modeling industry so their updates are quicker and give you more tools but i just like the sound of amplitube, i think it just sounds more "real" and reactive and their functions are nothing to scoff at. But u really cant lose either way.

On using a plugin to shape a mic'd tone, no rules against it obviously but wat ive found is because you recorded more than just the guitar (air, noise etc.) u end up modeling that to and so thats y most ppl stay away from doing it. If u use high gain models or effects u end up wiht weird anomalies where air and noise are triggering the plug.

Since: Jul 02, 2003

Feb 18, 2010 03:19 am

Until GR4, I usually ended up using Pod Farm, Amplitube is the one use least so far. Hands down GR3/4 has a better interface IMO, Amplitube next and last Pod Farm. They all have strenth's and weaknesses and all 3 do well if you spend some time with them.

Pod Farm was easiest I think to get a good tone out of for me , but is also the most limited compared to the other 2. Both GR4 and soon Amplitube 3 are widening that gap even further, add in Line6's arcane copy protection and it would be the last one I'd consider buying at this point.

I haven't decided if I'm going to upgrade to Amplitube 3 yet, since GR4 IMO is really nice sounding now, but it sure looks good and one can never have too many options right? :)

As far as using a mic'd signal, yeah I'd say if it works for you go for it, I think clean/light overdriven can work pretty well, but hi-gain stuff doesn't from my experience. I know some mic there guitar/amp and just use the amp sims for their effects. If you do mic an amp it's usually works best to not use the cabinet part in the sim.


Abomb Muchbaby
Since: Jul 02, 2009

Feb 18, 2010 08:26 am

Wow, thanks a lot for all the feedback. I spent some time with Amplitube last night and used it on a track. One thing I didn't ever realize is that most of the preset tones also have effects on them, which you can turn off, and add your own. Actually, some of the effects sound so good, I might try putting some vocal tracks into that program and just using one of the reverbs or the compressions. Thanks Guys, who knew I had this stuff at my disposal all along.

Also, makes good sense on micing the cab. I like what crux said, you end up modeling everything, including incidental noise and air. Good point man. Thanks alot.

Since: Sep 30, 2009

Feb 18, 2010 09:18 am

I love using podfarm for vocals. I haven't gotten to try out some more obvious things (lo-fi stuff, light bit of flanger, even a little clipping/distortiony stuff) but messing around with them i can tell you it would certainly be useful in many modern styles of rock.

Also podfarm has better reverbs than any stand alone reverb plug i've gotten my hands on. I'd assume amplitude would as well.

Compression, eh. I like using the one in cubase better. Pod farms has an unchangable attack and release, so its kind of useless to actually get to learn how to use compression "correctly" so if amplitudes is like that too i'd stay away from it. If you can set attack and release however, go for it.

Final tip for vocals. Delay + automation is a VERY powerful tool for vocals. Automate it so that you only get certain phrases you want delayed or echoed. I use podfarms "digital delay" mostly (just any delay that doesn't add character) and then up the treble and back off the bass (again, idk how amplitudes FX are set up so i'm just explaining things how i do them). Any part of the song that i feel the vocals aren't "there" enough, i use a delay on, switching between an echo in some parts of the song to something that repeats entire phrases. I haven't really gotten very good at it yet, i've only gotten to try it once. But i really do like how it turned out. Eh, heck i'll just post the clip here for an example.

1:00 or so, on the line "everything I need" i have an echo, i think set at a dotted eighth maybe. then it turns back off on the rest of the lines in the chorus.
1:40 sort of repeats that whole phrase
2:56 has an echoplex model on the backing vocal (i've gotta admit, i really like that one lol, kinda biased. still not perfect, but it has a really interesting flavor)

Like i said, i haven't really dabbled in it enough to get it great sounding yet, but i think using a little bit of delay can go a long way to making the vocals sound more professional. I automate the delay on/off, the time (so i can use one delay pedal for the entire vocal track), and at times the mix, bringing it up gradually.

SM7b the Chuck Noris of Mic's
Since: Jun 20, 2002

Feb 18, 2010 07:47 pm

I'm a fan of POD farm ( i got it free a few months ago when they were offering it )I use my PODxt , and my amps still. I like to use a compination of everything to get sound. I'm not as familiar with the others, though i've used the amplitube fender models and it wasn't too bad. I like set up, sound and ease of use , and for me the line 6 stuff has been nice for all that. my goal is getting good tones, not trying to recreat exact amp tones . I believe all of them have there stonge points, and they will do the job .

Since: Oct 01, 2008

Feb 18, 2010 10:37 pm

i'm using guitar rig 3, i'm no where near a master guitarist / producer but it seems to do what i want,

i tried a demo of revalver a while back and it slowed down my cubase a lot where i could only run it on one track, but i've modified my machine since then, maybe its better

i seen ppl talk about gtr4 being bettter , are the old amps and stuff improved on or is it just adding more stuff?

I am not a crook's head
Since: Mar 14, 2003

Feb 18, 2010 10:46 pm

I'm only about 30 minutes into a relationship with Amplitube 2 Live and it pretty much sucks so far. It doesn't sound much different than a couple of free modellers that I've picked up off of KVRAudio.com over the last few months (like FreeAmp3).

I spent an hour with my real guitar rig downstairs earlier today so maybe that spoiled me as far as touch sensitivity, smooth overdrive/distortion, and familiar parameters to tweak. I don't doubt that there are some servicable sounds in Amplitube, I haven't dug deep at all so far. So it's a little early to make any final judgement calls, but so far it's pretty familiar territory as far as its shortcomings as a modeller.

The one truth that seems to hold across all modellers is that the presets are useless. You have to get into deep editing in order to come up with sounds that will trick the listener into thinking that he's hearing air being pushed by a real speaker in a real room. The presets seem to be more of a showcase of the extremeties of what the software is capable of and not a showcase of how convincing it can be.

Since: Sep 30, 2009

Feb 18, 2010 11:14 pm

YES! i couldn't agree with you more Tad. I'm inclined to think that its an issue of different guitars having a huge difference on the tone. Because thats the only rational explanation i can give for the terrible presents they give you. Why spent months, even years, developing a program, only to give crappy presents and give many people a first impression of "dude. modeling blows" But of course, many companies do seem to be quite irrational.

Since: May 06, 2007

Feb 19, 2010 10:49 am

I don't have any experience with the first two you asked about, but I have been using Line 6 stuff in my studio for 3 years now. I originally bought the classic Line 6 Tone Port GX. I had a few guitar players come in to record some stuff for fun with it, and they all ended up buying one as well being really impressed with how powerful of a tool it was for recording guitar.

I then came here for advice from the helpful folks about upgrading. I was at the time using the small PreSonus 1394 Inspire as my pre amp, and ask about maybe getting rid of the Tone Port GX for the UX2. Turns out that the UX2 has fantastic pres and all the modeling of the Line 6 all in one. I think Grearbox/Podfarm are great amp sims. Their presets are never great as you usually need to dial in a better tone after loading them, and each guitar sounds a bit different of course, but over all if you use them right you get great results.

I was so happy with my UX2, that I just last week upgraded to the pro line UX8. It comes with both Podfarm and Gearbox plugins, and has every single Line 6 amp pack unlocked with it. I still need some guitar players to try out the newer packs, but so far it is a fantastic recording interface. Very clean, and very powerful. It has helped me notice that my room needs work on the acoustics a bit.

The only difference I can see between Podfarm and gearbox is out it looks graphically. So I use Gearbox more only because its a more simple layout. Either way, I hope this helps somewhat.

Motivational Speaker
Since: Jun 09, 2010

Jun 09, 2010 10:07 pm

I give a nod to Amplitube (2 or 3). I get the tones I want much easier. The new mic placement in 3 is awesome (not to mention the options on offer). Much better than Rig or Pod (IMO).

Kind regards,

Living Room Rocker

living in a van down by the river

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