This area is where you tweak the sound of your guitar. Virtual Guitarist AMBER offers a large range of sounds from warm, soft and round to brilliant and sparkling.
The POSITION knob emulates moving the strumming hand between neck and bridge.
The center position represents the recording position – the hand strumming over the soundhole – and is therefore neutral.
Turn the knob to the left (moving the virtual hand towards the neck) for a more full-bodied, hollow sound.
Turn the knob clockwise (towards the bridge) for a thinner sound with more attack.
Acoustic Steel String Guitar, the instrument that Virtual Guitarist AMBER adds to your arsenal, gets used in a variety of applications – from being the main backing track (songwriter, folk) to just adding a bit of “harmonic glitz” on top of the percussion instruments. For each of these situations, you need a different character or TONE. This 5-way switch lets you change the tone of the guitar sound basically from “a lot of low end” to “a lot of high end”.
Seriously, more details here:
Those descriptions provide just guidelines and technical info. We encourage you
to always try out all switch positions for any given track.
The source material of Virtual Guitarist AMBER has been recorded with both a microphone and a pickup mounted on the guitar. The SOURCE selector lets you choose between four different selections of those two signals:
- Mic – a vintage large-membrane studio condenser microphone positioned about 1 ft from the neck/bridge intersection. The Mic signal features strong bass and treble and is the typical sound character and preferred choice in most cases.
- Pickup – a pickup mounted on the guitar. The pickup sounds drier, more compact and direct. It is more mid-oriented and lacks the low end and high sparkle of the Mic signal.
- Mix – Best of both worlds, a mono mix of Mic and Pickup, therefore thicker than the Mic signal alone with more low end and sparkle than the Pickup signal.
- Split L/R – this outputs the Mic signal on the left channel and the Pickup signal on the right channel. You can use this to route and treat each signal individually in your DAWs mixer, or to create a stereo effect without using Doubling or a second instance.
The SHIMMER knob adds silvery high-end to the signal, making the guitar shimmer or sparkle even more. This is particularly useful when you use Virtual Guitarist AMBER as support for Hi-Hat and other high-frequency rhythmic instruments, as is often the case in pop/rock productions.
The three knobs underneath the POSITION control allow you to add typical Fret Noise, to re-tune or to duplicate the guitar.
When changing from one chord to another, the fingers sliding on the fretboard create characteristic noises that add to the authentic character of an acoustic guitar. Virtual Guitarist AMBER has an algorithm that produces these noises dynamically exactly where they would occur on a real guitar. You can switch them off (sometimes producers just don’t want them, and cut them out even from real recordings) by deactivating this button.
Activating this button emulates a guitar where the strings of the entire guitar are tuned down by two semitones, but the player still plays the same chords. This generally leads to a darker sound character and also extends the low range down from E to D. Basically what this means:
- You can play chords down to the low D.
- The guitar will generally sound fuller/lower as lower versions/inversions of the
wanted chord are now available.
Activating this button has the same effect as if two guitarist played your track at the same time, with minimal variations.
Technically, Doubling adds a second guitarist and places both at the outer positions of the stereo spectrum.
We recommend to use Doubling with care – it’s great to give more weight to
tracks that are a key foundation of your song. On the other hand, a mix gets
mushy pretty quick if you have 2 or 3 doubled guitar tracks playing at the same time.
Two handy tips:
- To create the impression of two guitarists playing even differently, instead of using Doubling set up two instances of Virtual Guitarist AMBER with different settings of POSITION, TONE and SHIMMER, put them on the ends of the panoramic spectrum and pick different phrases for both.
- Add a second instance with a sharper sound to a doubled full-bodied setting and place it in the middle and you have a very effective way of controlling the presence of that guitar track in the mix by adjusting the single track against the doubled one.