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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Ableton Live 2017 > Mini Reviews

Mini Reviews


Other amplifier simulators include versions of the tweed amplifier, including Native Instruments’ Guitar Rig 5 (£169), and IK Multimedia’s AmpliTube Fender (€163). However, both solutions provide a wide range of amps beyond the basic tweed amp setting, so the modelling isn’t as detailed as what’s provided on the UAD version.

Amp it up

Without any doubt, the Fender ‘55 Tweed Deluxe is arguably the most authentic and sonically detailed emulation we’ve seen of any guitar amplifier to date, complete with a level of dynamism and musicality to match. As you’d expect, there’s a massive hit on DSP resources, so that even on an OCTO-powered UAD device, you’ll struggle to run more than eight instances. Ultimately, you quickly realise why the plug-in is best run on the front end of an Apollo interface, where you simply ‘record through’ the plug-in, rather than run multiple instances. For non-Apollo users, though, there’s always the option of bouncing/freezing the track, if you want to claw back some DSP resources.

Arugably the most authentic and sonically detailed emulation we’ve seen of any guitar amp

As always, the best plug-ins – especially those that use distortion – come at a premium, but given the sheer amount of musicality you get back from the Fender ‘55 Tweed Deluxe, it will be an investment that reaps dividends. It’s certainly an excellent and logical choice for Universal Audio’s modelling expertise, and may indicate a string of products (a Fender Twin would make us very happy!) that could follow in future software updates.

MTF Verdict

+ Superbly authentic sound

+ Dynamic response

+ Concentration on ‘tone’

+ Flexible mic controls

- Big hit on UAD DSP resources

- Makes other tweed models sound inferior!

The Fender ‘55 Tweed Deluxe illustrates just how good amplifier modelling can sound, capturing all the unique sonic traits of a truly classic vintage amp.


Reel People Present Soul Vocals

Publisher Loopmasters

Price £24.95



Reel People Present Soul Vocals is a new pack of 12 vocal-construction kits in 24-bit WAV and Apple Loops formats, for use in R’n’B, deep house and beyond. Each kit contains several male and female harmonies and ad-libs, plus a comped file with all the main layers combined. All of the harmonies are double-tracked to provide a richer sound, with each take hard panned so that they can be separated, if you so desire. The ad-libs are in mono, but there are several versions to offer up variation. Lyrics-wise, it’s not going to win any awards, but the phrases are uplifting without sounding too cheese-heavy. With that in mind, some will prefer to use the pack as a source of layered, wordless harmonies and ad-lib chops. The tempos range from 84 to 127BPM, meaning the parts could be suitable for many genres, from hip-hop or drum ‘n’ bass to house styles.

■ Key Features

14 song construction kits

80 to 127BPM

Male and female vocals

Ad-libs, leads and layered harmonies

Recorded at the Reel People studio

MTF Verdict

A well performed and thought-out pack that features some great male and female harmonic layers and a decent selection of soulful ad-libs.


Double Bass Mania VIII: Pure Modern Metal

Publisher Beta Monkey Music

Price $39.99



If you’re after some intense metal drum grooves to add power and excitement to your tracks, then you might want to check out Double Bass Mania VII from Beta Monkey Music. Recorded and mixed by one of metal’s leading engineers, the library contains over 1GB of deep and punchy toms, fierce snares and fast but tight kick-drum rolls. Tempos range from 80 to 110BPM, with inspiration drawn from death and thrash alongside more modern metal styles. All loops come from the same session for easy drag-and-drop arrangement, and you also get 256MB of individual multi-velocity hits taken from the same session. The playing really is world class, with some blistering fills and highoctane beats delivering straightup metal grooves alongside more complex syncopated patterns and alternative time signatures.

■ Key Features

Modern, thrash and death-metal grooves

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About MusicTech

Ableton Live can truly become the hub of your music making set-up whatever you use, be it hardware, iOS or software. We have tutorials to help you make the most of it in any situation plus features on freeware, mastering and mobile music making. WORKSHOPS: Making the most of the Sine wave - Create with this versatile wave Integrate Live with your iOS devices - for control and music Attack, Decay, Sustain, Release - what ADSR can do for you INTERVIEWS: Highasakite Stoni Apothek