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My best shot so far at making IRs with VPDI

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  • My best shot so far at making IRs with VPDI

    Just wanted to share this VPDI technique that I’ve been having success in recent days. It uses the Advance Creation process.

    1. When making the IR, I begin by playing each string open using the same attack I use when playing live. (It seems that all piezo-based pickups respond better with a light attack.) I let each string ring out. My theory is that the overtones change as the notes ring out and I want the VP to get a measurement of that dynamic change (my thinking … nothing scientific there). Moving up the neck, I do again at the 5th and 10th frets.

    2. I play some open and bar chords and let them ring out, also moving up the neck.

    3. I play through a song segment (maybe 6-10 seconds) that represents my generally playing style.

    4. I finish off with some harmonics. Total time: maybe 2 minutes.

    5. After processing and saving the IR, I run through the feedback frequency procedure. In most cases, I apply the feedback frequency of 60-100%. Sounds better right way. At this point, if I’m able, I’m monitoring through my PA. BTW, I’m convinced that getting the lows under control is essential before any attempts to sweeten the sound with further equalization.

    On both the VP eq and the overall eq, I apply the HPF at a higher frequency than you might think – generally around 150 Hz; and on the LPF lower than you might think – 7500-8500 Hz. Generally, nothing higher than that is usable in a live playing situation in my experience.

    6. With no additional eq at this point, I record a couple of minutes of music into my DAW (Logic) where the eq controls are easier to use. Listening to the recording – rather than playing the guitar – keeps me from confusing the recorded tone of my guitar with the live sound. I begin to hunt for peaky frequencies using the eq’s visual display and by scanning across the spectrum using a narrow q and exaggerated frequency levels. I’m no expert, but I’ve learned that a general knowledge of eq is very helpful at this point.

    When I find an ugly frequency band I bring it down using the narrowest q possibly to eliminates the unpleasing tone I’m hearing. If I end up making radical frequency cuts (more than about 6 dB), I consider rerecording the IR and doing something different like using a different mic position or changing strings. After all, the TonePrint has already done all the heavy eq lifting.

    When I’m satisfied with the overall sound in the DAW, I duplicate the eq setting in the VPDI. I like to add a little compression and reverb.

    That gets me in the ballpark. When I get to the gig, a little tweaking is usually necessary. I save that tweak as a new preset.

    Hope that helps or at least stimulates some profitable discussion that will help us all.
    Last edited by Ex202; 07-29-2021, 07:42 AM.

  • #2
    Thanks for the detailed walkthrough!

    I've been using the Advanced VP Creation a lot lately too, with great results.

    I love that you're recording your signal and EQ'ing it in your DAW to keep the guitar isolated. I've been doing something similar with my loop pedal, looping the guitar and then EQ'ing it without the "live" guitar in the room.

    That LPF setting does seem a bit low, but hey, whatever works!


    • #3
      I also use a looper to keep the guitar isolated. Thank you for sharing your thought process on making your voiceprint. I have had a couple revisions to my voiceprint but i have yet to try the advance vp creation. So thanks for this and i might give it a try.


      • #4
        Just got this pedal yesterday and made two presets. First one was with the phone and the standard method. Second one was with a Shure MV88+ microphone attached to the phone.

        The sample created with the phone was pretty tubby and non-dimensional. Probably could work through a lot of different variations EQ settings over time, but it was just my first attempt.

        The preset created with the Shure microphone was done using the advanced method. I spent much more time entering sequential recordings of scales, chords, strumming, various picking technique. The resulting preset was much more detailed pleasing.

        Note: the Shure microphone was much more sensitive than the iPhone. I needed to get more distance between the mic and the guitar to prevent it from clipping. This may actually be an asset in that it replicates the actual listening to an instrument from a short distance.

        While I understand the manufacturer’s desire to keep the task as simple as possible, I think the advanced creation process is very helpful whether done with the iPhone or with an attached microphone. My notion is that it simply gives a lot more detail to the program to analyze and create the presets.

        That said, I am wondering if there is some sort of analysis available through the program or other resources—other than by ear— to determine that the created preset has adequate information or could be better.

        I’m just beginning this journey of creation with this device. As more people get them, I can see that between the power of the application use and our creativity, there may be a sharing market place for presets. Although I know this is not the intention of this device, I have already seen YouTube videos suggesting that anyone can make a cheap guitar sound like an expensive one depending on the loaded preset. This may not be the best idea for this device, but you can’t stop users from drawing their own conclusions. I can imagine user presets of classic instruments shared over user groups. I am a little out of the main stream in that regard because I play gypsy jazz guitar, but there are enough of us that struggle with the problem of amplifying these quirky instruments.

        More to come.


        • #5
          The advanced creation process is definitely a great way to play around and see what works for you. I've actually been using the advanced method, but only recording about 15-20 seconds of strumming. It's been giving me some really great results. It may not be super detailed, but the Voiceprint sounds accurate and doesn't give me a bunch of overtones that I need to tame with the EQ.