A surprisingly impressive Amp Match result

  • I got into a friendly discussion in the youtube comments with someone who said Bias was terrible compared to Helix and that its amp matching was a joke. That hasn't been my experience, so I decided to make a simple test to demonstrate. It turned out hilariously close, even better than I expected, so I'm sharing it here too.

    For my test I went to the Kemper forums and found a random post that had 2 dry guitar tracks and 2 Kemper profiles applied to those tracks. I then used Amp 2 to match those Kemper profiles, using the dry & Kemper'd tracks as the inputs. Here's the results -- dry guitar first, then Kemper, then Bias Amp 2 matched to the Kemper:


    That's easily as close to the Kemper, as the Kemper is to the original. Not bad Bias, not bad at all. FWIW, I've also used the amp match tool to stereo-match commercial guitar recordings by splitting the tracks into their left and right channels and matching them, and then mixing the L/R matches back together in Bias FX 2. The results come out sounding uncannily close to the original, including the spatial positioning. HA!

  • Moderator

    @jb Awesome!

  • Amp matching requires more expertise than making a profile, which is fully automated. But I agree that if you have the expertise and put in the effort to tweak things, it is a great technology.

    It is really underrated, I think, because so many people misunderstand it and have heard bad matches made folks who are well meaning but not really clued in with how to get the most from it.

    One issue I do have with it is that amp matches in Bias, even when they are pretty good, tend to be tightly coupled to the cab used so that if you do experiment with changing cabs, they tend to 'whistle' at high frequencies because the match is accentuating some nasty upper frequencies because the PG stock cabs roll off the high end so hard. This also makes the amp model behave funny if the cab is disabled for running to a guitar cab.

    This is just one reason I asked PG for the option to allow us to retain our customizations in the amp 2 matching process. They did implement that, which was super great of them, so at least I can control this in my own matches but unfortunately most of the tone cloud matches are not going to be setup like that.

  • @elric Indeed, all you said is very true. When I use the automated matching, I think of it more like a Kemper profile--a single snapshot of a specific tone and character, but one you can't really tweak much as if it were the original setup. It takes a lot more effort, but if you manually get as close as you can to the original models without using the amp-match block, you can then have a lot more tweaking leeway. Different approaches for different purposes IMO.

    Still, I've been very impressed with how well the amp match utility in Bias performs. I've matched studio tones on my own guitars that, when mixed into the original stems, are hard to tell apart from the original.

  • @jb Yes, finally, someone else who gets it! :-) I have tried to explain to folks that even though the Bias FX looks like Helix or some other cool signal flow type tool/plugin, the Bias Amp tool is like a Kemper when used for Amp Matching, it is a snap shot of one operating point and it is slightly harder to shoot because you have to dial the amp prior but once you get that skill developed, it kills and can really be on par with some really high end gear.

    Plus, you don't have to amp match, you can basically still create custom amps with the all the great deep diving tools and no Amp Matching.

    Definitely a great system, but so many people seem to misunderstand it and as a result I think, do not really give it a fair evaluation.

  • @elric Couldn't have said it any better, you nailed it.

  • Moderator

    @elric well said..well said....

  • @Mike Given the skill set needed for successful amp matching with Bias Amp, it might be good to have a training package available or tutorial to walk people through the subtleties of how to do this. Lord knows I have no idea what I am doing in this regard :-)

  • Agree that's one area where Bias Amp/Fx lacks is having good tutorials, the manual is pretty basic this knob does this and this knob does that approach.
    I've been OK with dialing in my own tones and FX and get good results but I've been using amp sims for years and get it, many new time users will find it all a bit daunting hence PR wise it would be good to invest time in tutorials.


  • Moderator

    @paul-jones32 @pcadoret1954 Thanks for all your feedback, Indeed we need to have a more informative tutorial. cc @Felix

    It would be a big help for us if you could also share which the most tricky part during the process is with us. Thanks!