Recabinet Computer Speaker Emulator

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The package of Recabinet Complete
The package of Recabinet Complete


General Information

Original Author: Staffay

Weapon: Computer Cabinet Simulation/Impulses

Make: Recabinet

Model: Complete v. 2.01 (Vintage/Modern)

Price: 14.99$ (normal prize 75$)


Recabinet is a very unusal product, since it actually is no software by itself. It consists of impulses sampled from guitar speaker cabinets, that can be loaded in different host applications like Peavey Revalver, Guitar Rig 4, Studio Devil, Overloud TH1 and others. (these are software guitar amp simulators ed.note) There are also some free host applications one can use for hosting the emulations, which can also be used in conjunction with the line-out of Your favourite amp or guitar amp simulation software.

Product Description

As stated above Recabinet is a set of speaker impulses, taken from a lot of cabinets with different microphones. In order to understand what a speaker impulse is, the following applies:

When a cabinet impulse is made, the first thing that is done is setting up a guitar cabinet, microphone, and room acoustics to achieve a good tone, just like you would if you were about to record a real track, in a real studio. Then, once things are sounding just right, a short tick, or pop, is played through the cabinet to record the way in which that particular setup responds to a short electrical burst. The recorded response to this short tick is known as the “impulse response” for that particular setup. Every setup has a different impulse response, if you move the mic, change the speaker, do it in another room, change anything at all... then you have a different impulse response, just like a fingerprint, unique to that particular setup.

The impulse response is basically just a recorded audio file, typically saved in WAV or AIFF format, and it’s usually pretty short. After all, it’s just the recording of a short tick played though a speaker in a room. They can be mono, or stereo, depending on how many mics were used in the setup, and they usually don’t run more than 1 second, with lengths of 2000 to 4000 samples being more common for short impulses from guitar cabinets. Before these WAV / AIFF impulse files are saved, they are carefully trimmed and sliced so that there is no leading or trailing silence, much in the same way that loops are cut down with sample accuracy to their start and end points. This is done so that the impulses can be used without introducing unwanted latency and to be kept as short as possible to keep CPU usage down. Large impulses take more CPU power to use than smaller ones, so keeping them as small as possible is always a good thing.''

What Recabinet has done is to take some of the best cabinets found and miced them up with different microphones, angles and different combinations to make a collections of simulations that can be used in a computer to simulate a real cabinet. Since it's possible in a DAW to have several instances of the product running, it's possible to emulate several cabinets and microphones/placements at the same time. The documentation is good and explains how everything works as well as recommends some suitable hosts for the simulations. It also states that: "Do NOT use the speaker output of Your amp", which really is a stupid thing to do, since You will ruin both the soundcard and maybe other things as well. The simulations covers nearly all popular cabinets/microphones used for recording, and contains as much as 2000 impulse responses.

Sound/In Use

I downloaded the keFIR host which is a free software for hosting impulses. The first thing I tried was to simply take the sound from the line-out from my Fender amp with a little distorsion straight into the soundcard. (which gives a harsh sound) Then I started to experiment with different cabinets and microphones in the host. The first thing noticed was that the entire sound changed and the "harshness" was nearly completely removed. The different cabs/mics all sounded very different, but one I liked the most was the emulation of a 4x12 vintage with greenbacks. (old Celsestion speakers, ed.note) But the most exiting part took place when I copied the entire track to another channel, and started to mix cabinets/microphones. Suddenly it started to sound very "alive" and the sound was growing "fat". The manufacturer also recommends in the manual to use at least 2 instances to achieve a good sound, and that is perfectly true! Of course can even more be used to simulate a couple of stacks, just changing the EQ in the DAW a little and adding a small delay between the stacks. The possibilities here are andless....

The second test I did was to put a mic (SM57) in front of my Fender and at the same time take the line-out signal directly into the DAW. I then found the emulation for the SM57 and a Deluxe vintage speaker with the same angle I used. (off-axis 45 degrees) Then I recorded and compared the results, which was really stunning. They were nearly identical, except for that the emulation even sounded more "warmer" than my original speaker. (which is not a vintage one)

The third test I did was to take some old recordings, recorded with computer guitar amp simulators in order to see if there was a possibility to "fresh" them up. I took a recording of "Red House" originally made with Powercore Tubifex, (which actually sounds very good itself) and duplicated the tracks and tested with both greenbacks, Fender 1x12 and VOX cabinets. The sound produced was even smoother than the original, and were shaped totally different with the different boxes emulations used.

Another thing I tried was to take a recording I did with real microphones from my amps, even though that's not the purpose with this software, and tried some cabinet emulations on this. I found out that it is fully possible to use the simulations as a "character"-EQ in order to drastically change the character of a sound. Very versatile.

It is easy to navigate in the library among the different speakers/microphones once You understand how it's organized. (well documented in the manual)

Another thing worth to mention, is that if You are using the line-out of Your amp directly into the cabinets, the impulse response also emulates the power amp as well. In the emulations of the 4x12 Greenbacks, half of the sound are based on 6L6-tubes and half on EL34's. The same goes for the Fender boxes where You have a choice of the "normal" channel and the "bright" channel.

Overall Impression

This is a very cool idea about a software, and I haven't seen anything alike except for Altiverb. (which is a convolution reverb that also uses/can use impulses from different sources) It can definitely replace a hardware speaker simulator to a prize that for now is ridiculous low. (they have a sale until the first of november) Most of us amateur/semi-professionals don't have rooms or money to get the equipment necessary to do a top recording of an existing amp, since the microphones/cabinets are expensive. The ability to change microphones/cabinets AFTER it's recorded is just great. The only drawback of using this technology is that You must understand what it's really about. You must also do some experimenting, since this is not a "Plug & Play" -software, even that it's fairly easy to set up a speaker and a mic to get a descent sound. From now on I'm gonna get a split box and record the guitar without no amps/speakers at all, have a line signal from the amp in the card and at the same time put some mics on the amp - then You have maximal flexibility when it comes to the mixdown process. I just love these simulators, and for a prize of two packets of smoke, I will even quit for a day in order to get it!!


There are some great samples at their site, found HERE. (I don't really think the videos below does the software justice, but the demonstration on how to duplicate tracks is good.)

Alternative Weapon

Instead of recommending alternative weapons here, I decided to move this section to the master page for Computer Guitar Amp Simulators.


ReCabinets homepage

•“Tangerine 4×12” - Orange 4×12
•“1960 4×12″ - Marshall 1960AV 4×12
•“Excel 4×12” - Randall RS412XLT100 4×12
•“Ghandi 4×12″ - Mesa Standard 4×12 (newly resampled for version 2.0)
•“Motown 1×15″ - Ampeg Portaflex B15N bass amp.
•“Blackface 4×10″ - Fender ‘65 Super Reverb 4×10
•“Tweed 1×12″ - Fender ‘53 Deluxe 1×12
•“Green 4×12″ - Marshall 4×12 with Greenbacks
•“Zodiac 2×12″ - Selmer Zodiac Twin 30
•“Top Boost 2×12″ - Vox AC30

•“57″ - Shure SM57 - industry standard dynamic microphone, the most popular microphone for guitar recording.
•“545″ - Shure Unidyne III 545 - sought-after vintage predecessor to the Shure SM57, known for its smooth response, appreciated by those in the know.
•“121″ - Royer 121 - legendary modern ribbon mic, extremely popular in modern recordings.
•“409″ - Sennheiser MD409 - legendary vintage side-address dynamic microphone, used on many modern and classic recordings.
•“421″ - Sennheiser MD421 - legendary dynamic mic, used on many modern and classic recordings.
•“i5″ - Audix i5 - modern industry standard dynamic microphone, for a full-range, aggressive response.
•“D6″ - Audix D6 - modern kick drum mic, great for getting the low “cabinet rumble” tone as a blend-in with your primary tone.
•“U87″ - Neumann U87 - legendary condenser microphone with incredibly detailed, musical response.
•“RTA” - DBX RTA reference microphone, known for its perfectly flat response and high SPL rating. Useful especially for Fractal Audio AxeFX users, and cool for everyone else!

Recabinet Modern 1.0 (included)
•“Ghandi” - Mesa Standard/Oversize 4×12 •“Angora” - Line 6 Vetta 4×12
•“Igor” - Krank Krankenstein 4×12
•“Genzie” - Genz Benz G-Flex ported 2×12
•“Sterling” - Marshall Hand Wired 4×12 (late 1960s reissue)
•“Damien” - Marshall 1936 2×12
•“Kirby” - Carvin 4×12 British Series
•“Manatee” - Ampeg SVT 8×10 Bass Cabinet (using Ampeg SVT Pro Classic power section)
•“Trapezoid” - Roland Micro Cube (using native power section)

These cabinets were sampled using the Universal Audio 610 tube mic preamp, with the following mics:

•“57″ - Shure SM57 - industry standard dynamic microphone, the most popular microphone for guitar recording.
•“i5″ - Audix i5 - modern industry standard dynamic microphone, for a full-range, aggressive response.
•“4060″ - Audio Technica 4060 - modern high-SPL condenser microphone, for warm, full-bodied tone.
•“D6″ - Audix D6 - modern kick drum mic, great for getting the low “cabinet rumble” tone as a blend-in with your primary tone.