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  #1  
Old 10-19-2007, 09:38 PM
wescravn wescravn is offline
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Default OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

Review:

Digidesign's Eleven certainly is impressive, and offers a nice wide array of Guitar Amp Simulations. Eleven I believe, thus the name. The problem is though DigiDesign's Eleven lacks the balls as seen in products such as Guitar Rig from Native Instruments, now on Version 3.0.

Installing it into our Protools LE rig was painless, and offered instant gratification. I also noticed allot better performance in CPU resources on a G4 1800 MHz machine, as versus its competition (Amplitube & Guitar Rig 2). Well its simple, you choose the amp, and the mic simulations (nothing really new here), and you have several presets to choose from. Certainly not as many as Guitar Rig or Amplitube, but maybe Digidesign will fix this by shipping.

I assigned the plugin to the track insert and joila instant gratification. DigiDesign's Eleven amp's sounded realistic, although lacked some of the sonic clarity as seen in Guitar Rig by Native Instruments. I was first discouraged by the overall lack of a tuner, but didn't go to the manual docs to find out if it was available. Also missing were some niceties in Guitar Rig like the tape player, and presets grouped by genres or guitarists.

The demo also was available for TDM on Windows Only another not so nice thing.

If you want to record guitar tracks, or dirty up your audio (Eleven is also Audio-Suite) then this might be your GodSend. If you want serious performance, you'd be better off upgrading your machine, and trying Guitar Rig 3.0 by Native Instruments or Amplitube 2.0 which are more mature products. For a first version this is impressive, but I'll be waiting for Eleven.2 unless its included free with Protools 7.4 upcoming release, which I doubt is the case.

Native Instruments Guitar Rig retails $339 without Rig Kontrol, and $539 with RigKontrol.

T. Willliamson
Avid Guitar Freak
New York, NY
wescravn@gmail.com
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  #2  
Old 10-20-2007, 07:59 AM
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Stig Eliassen Stig Eliassen is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

"This one goes to eleven" - Spinal Tap

Now, the sound. I think that it's the raw amp/cabinet sounds that's important. FX you can find anywhere, also included with Pro Tools. But the emulations are much more crucial than the number of features and included FX. I have all the plugins I could ever wish for on my iLok, but they can't help me if the raw sound is crap. Sure, I can try to mask the raw sound, but it's not going to be stellar results.

Also, this value-for-money thing that's so popular in nearly all reviews these days. I really hate it. "Sure, this software doesn't sound so good, but has so many features that I simply must raise all my thumbs up in the air".



I must mention that I haven't tried Eleven yet, so my "rant" is more of a general nature. Maybe I should've started another thread? Anyway, this is certainly not an attempt to "get you", T. Williamson. Your post simply reminded me of something I've thought about for a long time.
Value-for-money...well, I value good sound quality.

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  #3  
Old 10-20-2007, 09:57 AM
tamasdragon tamasdragon is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

There is no windows rtas demo...Why? So I don't try it.
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  #4  
Old 10-21-2007, 06:31 PM
j20056 j20056 is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

I totally agree PT Lover. I love that Eleven is just a really good amp+cab plugin. We all have good FX plugins, and frankly, a lot of FX sometimes masks poor quality amp tone. Ideally, there would like an Eventide plugin with all the beautiful Eventide FX and presets, and using Eleven as the amp farm (pun intended). I think Digi should resist the pressure to compete with Amplitube2/Rig2/GTR3, although they are decent plugins (I own the first two - they're not even close to Eleven on pure amp tone see my other post).
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  #5  
Old 10-22-2007, 01:13 AM
Chris Townsend Chris Townsend is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

Tamasdragon, don't quote me on it, but last I heard a Windows LE version is coming soon, so you should get a chance to try it out. We'll probably post a note on the DUC when it's available.

I also I think PT Lover makes a good point. I've used many of the whiz-bang multi-effect guitar pre-amps over the years, and while they can produce some cool sounds, I find that I'm constantly tweaking presets but then quickly tire of it and move to the next preset. My guitar playing ability is certainly not fantastic, and to some degree lots of FX and distortion can cover up my crappy playing, but in the end I find I'm so much happier with one good amp (or amp model) sound. When the basic sound is right, I love to play for hours, and I don't need constant tweaking or flipping through presets. A good tube amp (or amp model) is expressive and you can get many sounds from one amp at one setting. Typically reverb is the only effect I go for, and sometimes not even that. If you consider the great electric guitar tracks from albums produced in past 50 years, I'd guess that the majority are just an amp with some reverb (either natural or synthetic) and maybe some slap delay. At the risk of making a lame metaphor, the meat and potatoes is the guitar and amp. The rest are spices, which do no good without something tasty to put them on. Yes, definitely a lame metaphor.
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  #6  
Old 10-22-2007, 05:56 AM
wescravn wescravn is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

while I agree the meat and potoatoes are the guitar and amp, it's certainly not surprising to see digidesign rep defend their own product. Overall I've used multiple Guitar Amp Simulators, and Eleven is the least impressive. I just feel its got a lot of work to grow into. Digidesign is already getting into a heavily covered market, and i doubt the product will succeed (at least in this version).

Now If it was free OK, but I doubt we will see that. Digidesign is consistently notorious for giving users stripped down products that are barely functional. Look at Protols LE (a joke), and compare that to any other DAW and its just ridiculous. Its certaintly a money thing for digidesign, so people will buy a upgraded $10,000+ dollar system, and the company will stay in business.

The tides are turning though, and my prediction is this.....Digidesign will not be the leader in the next ten years, they may fall to 3 or fourth position, as computers get more powerful and software much better. Eleven is something they'll have to give away, not much like xpand, since I highly doubt it will compete against the big-boys (NI, WAVES, IK MULTIMEDIA).
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  #7  
Old 10-23-2007, 04:50 AM
Peter Duemmler Peter Duemmler is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

Have you ever played a real AC30 and then played through Guitar Rig's AC30 sim (without all the FX!)?
If so, you know what Chris is talking about, if not, well do it... ;-)

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  #8  
Old 10-23-2007, 06:01 AM
rfstudio rfstudio is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

Eleven is another tool in the tool box. Take it or leave it. I think it's simple to use and sounds very good. Additionally, there is nothing to prohibit you from adding effects to your signal chain if need be.

Trying to point to one guitar sim as the best is fruitless, as would be pointing to a brand of amplifier or guitar. They all have different strengths etc.

If you can't get the tones you are looking for then Eleven is probably not for you.

Anyway, it is always good to see people passionate about their sounds.

thanks,
Rick
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  #9  
Old 10-23-2007, 09:56 PM
Glenn G Glenn G is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

Sorry Wescraven, but I couldn't disagree with you more. I think Digi really got this one right.

Seems like everytime one of these amp sim plugs is released it's always the same debate. Those who like heavy, supersatured sounds all seem to love GuitarRig and think everything else is crap. Those who like old Fenders/Voxes and Plexis (like me) think GR is the fakest thing we've ever heard.

I have a simple test with all of these amp sim plugs -- listen to them in the context of a mix. The bad ones have no upper mid definition and way too much low end. This makes them sound warm and huge by themself, but they absolutely step all over everything in a mix and yet somehow seem to get lost at the same time. Personally I hate this sound.

Eleven makes the guitar sit in the mix right where it's supposed to -- much closer to a real, mic'd amp. The upper mids cut through enough so that you can actually turn down the guitar track and still hear it. The low end is not bad without being overbearing. The guitar doesn't step all over the vocal track.

I also find that Eleven "feels" like playing through a tube amp more than any other plug I've tried. Not the same as the real thing mind you, but inspiring nonetheless. I also find it to be somewhat dynamic where picking harder creates more distortion and easing up cleans things up a bit. Again, inspiring to play through.

I never understand people who think that clean sounds are an afterthought and the dirty sounds are the real distinction. To me it's exactly the opposite: the dirty sounds are easy but most of the clean sounds I hear from these plugs are bland, papery and flat. Nothing like the subtle complextities and chime of an AC30 or a Deluxe Reverb. I hear these complexities in Eleven -- the speaker breakup feature seems to be the key. Never heard a plug that can do semi-dirty convincingly, but Eleven is pretty good at this. Horses for courses of course though.

So Wescraven more power to ya with GR and happy recording, but I'm with Chris T. - give me a good basic sound and I'll add the FX etc., or better yet throw a few of my pedals into the chain. Good work Digi.
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  #10  
Old 11-13-2007, 09:31 PM
wescravn wescravn is offline
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Default Re: OK First Attempt but No Dice! (Review)

I disagree with your thoughts saying guitar rig steps over the mix. I feel it really is the best of the best. Eleven wasn't that impressive from my tests. I recorded with it, and just wasn't impressed that much, as the rest of the AIR plugins. Yes, I would like to see some balls to eleven, but eleven has just arrived too late in the game, and i don't feel that eleven has the realistic sound.
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