VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Discussions of VST and VST3 plugins for Mixcraft users.

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Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Thu Jun 27, 2024 12:12 pm Hey Rogar,

Just out of curiosity, have you come to a conclusion? which plugin is the best for you?

Patrick
Hey Patrick!
I am definitely getting one of the MusicLabs guitar VSTs, and I've been comparing RealStrat and RealLPC side-by-side for both the 80s Vice-enthusiast stuff + acoustical stuff I just got hired to do. I think they're both awesomely playable, personally lean toward RealStrat right now, but still need more testing side-by-side to decide between RealStrat and RealLPC during my 2-week trials of both.

I was going to reply earlier after having a lot of fun comparing these 2 VSTs, but another plot twist was that I had the great good fortune to get contacted earlier this week by a talented game developer who hired me to compose his soundtrack: That'll be in a completely different style from the Vice stuff I was after (and still am after, after I finish his soundtrack first), but his soundtrack potentially works very well with more ambient acoustical guitar sounds... So I immediately started switching gears and trying out RealStrat and RealLPC for that purpose too.
Now I also look forward to figuring out how to do other stuff MusicLabs offers that I haven't even scratched the surface of yet, like however their strumming and rhythm pattern features work...

For now I'm just testing both mainly based on the Guitarix presets though, since I'm still struggling with finding an even better amp simulator. (If any other newcomers interested in this topic see this post, FYI, I do like Guitarix a lot and think it's very solid and accesible for a starter package that installs with MusicLabs guitars, but I am going to try alternatives like Amplitude's amp sim and see how they compare.)

Anyway: I wouldn't be surprised if I eventually end up following Patrick's example in eventually owning multiple MusicLabs VSTs someday, but right now I lean toward RealStrat 1st, since I've been able to get Guitarix to emulate those Miami Vice sounds more easily with that, and also got the speediest results in getting great sounding acoustical and "Wild Western" sounds with RealStrat too.

+ I am definitely also going to get OTS Evolution Infinity as soon as their summer "group buy" sale's done and they send me the code for the discount. (So far their price has been knocked down to just over $100, and it might go even lower, but that's already good enough for me considering my enthusiasm for this, LOL. :lol: )

I wish Orange Tree would offer a free trial of their stuff, but since they don't: I will eventually post examples using Evolution Infinity later on in this thread in case anyone else is curious, after I actually own it and figure out how to use it well enough to get something that's close enough by my own subjective reckoning to the Vice season 5 sound examples I posted the youtube clips of in the 1st post here. :mrgreen:
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

Rolling Estonian wrote: Thu Jun 27, 2024 3:04 pm Just my $.02, I have Amplitube with the Fender add on, the twin is my go to right off the bat, it's excellent, uncanny really.

M
Hey, thanks a lot! I was planning to try out IK Amplitude's amp 5 sim pretty soon myself, but I didn't know about their Fender add-on, so I will check it out too. :)
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Sat Jun 22, 2024 1:06 am Here are a few impressions of what I mean when the instrument can be felt via keys:
https://youtu.be/GLQlwetYGeE?si=QKggYPk7ohF2Cfz1
Good stuff, thanks!
I'd meant to say thanks for posting those videos earlier: I'd seen Abbott on the MusicLab channel, but hadn't seen that particular video until you posted it. :)
Later I found he has a multi-part series on his own Youtube channel with an intro course on using RealStrat and other MusicLab guitar VSTs (showing very different genres and styles from the Miami Vice stuff I'm after in the thread, but useful and fun for those of us who are just getting into these RealGuitar VSTs and still have quite a bit to learn): :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=beObNQylkxg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2xN7gLHCyk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtPX1WcQ3Yw
ppayne
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:19 am

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by ppayne »

Rogar wrote: Thu Jun 27, 2024 9:13 pm , but his soundtrack potentially works very well with more ambient acoustical guitar sounds... So I immediately started switching gears and trying out RealStrat and RealLPC for that purpose too.
Then I feel sorry for you with my next suggestion because you still have to test another variant :lol:

MusicLabs RealRick is of course made for this. Believe me, this guitar tone sounds absolutely great for acoustic and country style things. And don't forget, there's also the RealGuitar itself, for purely acoustic sound.

Yesterday I played a bit with Guitarix again. I have to say, it's actually not as bad as I first said. I still think that NIs Guitar Rig sounds better. There are simply much better presets available I think. But you can probably achieve all of this with Guitarix more or less if you tinker long enough.

Patrick
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Fri Jun 28, 2024 10:17 am Then I feel sorry for you with my next suggestion because you still have to test another variant :lol:

MusicLabs RealRick is of course made for this. Believe me, this guitar tone sounds absolutely great for acoustic and country style things. And don't forget, there's also the RealGuitar itself, for purely acoustic sound.
Oh no, poor me! :lol:
But no, seriously: Thanks for the tip! I was already impressed with RealStrat on acoustical/Western stuff (haven't tried comparing RealLPC back-to-back with it yet like on leads, but I will as soon as time allows and look forward to it), and I just downloaded RealRick and am installing the demo now...

You know, back to the earlier topic of RealStrat vs RealLPC for Miami Vice Season 5-ish styled 80s leads... I don't know exactly what I did before, but think maybe I'd tweaked around my amp sim settings differently on 1st comparison and so wasn't comparing them accurately, but whatever the reason, I'm now doing a 180 turn from what I said before :) :
They're still both awesome, but after chilling out last night testing RealStrat vs RealLPC but being more careful that I was using the identical amp and reverb presets for both during the comparison tests, RealLPC clearly took the lead to me for getting those kind of 80s clean lead sounds.
Now I'm hearing even more clearly what you said before about RealLPC: "With this you can play the 80s up and down." :mrgreen:
ppayne wrote: Fri Jun 28, 2024 10:17 am Yesterday I played a bit with Guitarix again. I have to say, it's actually not as bad as I first said. I still think that NIs Guitar Rig sounds better. There are simply much better presets available I think. But you can probably achieve all of this with Guitarix more or less if you tinker long enough.

Patrick
Thanks for the amp-related insights: Yeah, I had a pretty good impression of Guitarix as a nice easy-to-use starter tool, even if I could hear room for improvement when comparing it directly to the awesome lead sounds Michael Thompson got with an actual guitar and amp, but I'm still looking around for what amp sim works best for me in the long-run.
Also, I think you're right about tinkering with Guitarix for even better results: I'm still green at this, but I was able to get more noticeable improvements fiddling with the nobs in the full Guitarix amp window than I was in other amp sims I tried so far.

I have no doubt you're right that NI is even better if you have the full version of NI Guitar Rig, but for some reason I didn't do too well with the presets in the Guitar Rig 7 Player free version: The clean presets were actually very nice (some did sound even better with RealStrat than the respectably good counterparts in Guitarix did), but I couldn't get anywhere with the curated presets for leads and couldn't figure out how to adjust it manually as easily as I could with Guitarix. (That was likely mostly due to my inexperience, but NI's graphic user interface also isn't my favorite experience, even though I've never been one of the many hundreds of NI customers vocally complaining about it on forums for years... well, until now I guess, heheh). :lol:
I also gobbled up some more gigabytes to download and install Guitar Rig Elements 5 that I still had in my NI account from my first time I bought Komplete, hoping it'd have more and better presets, but then I couldn't even get it to load in Mixcraft as a plugin at all like GR7 player and all the other amp plugins... so decided at that point I'm ready for a little vacation from Native Instruments plugins again for a while, and meanwhile will look into getting better at customizing Guitarix + checking out alternatives like Amplitude before I decide whether to spring for the full version of Guitar Rig in future. :mrgreen:

Hey, thanks again for all the tips! I'll post again sometime after I do the more thorough 3-way test of Music Labs' Strat vs LPC vs Rickenbacker. :)
ppayne
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:19 am

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by ppayne »

If this thread continues like this, you will never be able to get a guitar plugin :lol:

For western style I can recommend the steel. With the RealGuitar you get 2 sample sets. Firstly the acoustic classic and the steel. Here, for example, I used the RealRick and the RealSteel in a wip project.

https://on.soundcloud.com/ZNmF1pxg9YqnBBW39

In the end you can't say exactly which tone is best. It probably boils down to playability and how much articulations the vst offer.

Patrick
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Fri Jun 28, 2024 1:08 pm Here, for example, I used the RealRick and the RealSteel in a wip project.

https://on.soundcloud.com/ZNmF1pxg9YqnBBW39
Hey, you sounded great! :)
ppayne wrote: Fri Jun 28, 2024 1:08 pm If this thread continues like this, you will never be able to get a guitar plugin :lol:
Hahah, I can see why so many of you own 3-4 or more MusicLabs VSTs for different guitars, because after the 3-way comparison test I thought RealLPC took the gold for the 80s/Vice styled leads, but RealStrat took the gold for the types of cleaner acoustical sounds most similar to what I'd personally like to use the best for ambient soundtracks...

And you were also right that the Rickenbacker was something special for a "Wild Western" sound in particular, it was a lot of fun. 8)

So at this point trying out Orange Tree Evolution Infinity after 13 more days when they give me the summer sale discount code is going to have to be the tie-breaker: If I'm impressed with its 80s styled leads (which is substantially what it was made for) and think it's as-good or better than RealLPC for 80s stuff, then I'll get RealStrat. But otherwise I might get LPC instead, as it definitely was really good on 80s clean leads.

The good news here is enough people have joined OTS' group buy summer sale that it's knocked the price of Infinity down to just under $90 right now instead of $180ish, and with two weeks left it might even go as low as $70ish. Already good enough for me. :mrgreen:

It'll be interesting to see how Orange Tree compares with MusicLabs on playability too, because MusicLabs definitely gets the A+ grade on playability with all 3 of their VSTs I tested out so far...
ppayne
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:19 am

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by ppayne »

An interesting option for free

https://impactsoundworks.com/product/sh ... p/#details

Patrick
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Mon Jul 01, 2024 1:47 pm An interesting option for free

https://impactsoundworks.com/product/sh ... p/#details

Patrick
Good call there: I have heard pretty good things about Shreddage overall. I think I saw some people saying they thought it had too noisy a signal when run through an amp sim compared with MusicLabs and OrangeTree VSTs, but hey, those who have Kontakt might as well try it since it's free and has quite a few features even though they removed some of the articulations.

I registered to download that, but noticed one gotcha for those of us who don't want to invest in the full version of Kontakt is that they said even the free Shreddage is limited to 15 minutes in the free version of Kontakt Player.
(I don't know whether my older version of Komplete 5 would let me use Shreddage without the time limit or not though, so maybe I'll try it sometime and find out...)

Even though Evolution Infinity doesn't have a free demo, its sale page says they licensed it with NI so that it operates without limitations within the free version of Kontakt Player. And of course, better yet: MusicLabs runs fine as a standalone VST without Kontakt at all. :)
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

Rogar wrote: Sat Jun 22, 2024 9:12 pm Interesting plot twist here re: trying out Infinity (despite their unfortunate lack of a trial demo) is that Orange Tree is apparently having a "group buy" promo sale where the more people they get joining the sale before 7/12, the higher the discount gets.
(It's currently at 30% knocking the price down by around $50 already, but if there's enough participants it could get as high as 60% off.)
https://www.orangetreesamples.com/account/group-buy
Sweet, Orange Tree got enough people on their Summer sale that they reached the maximum 60% off discount tier, so they're letting us buy now without having to wait until 7/12. I just pulled the trigger and bought Evolution Infinity for about $72, downloading the 4 gigabyte installer package now. :mrgreen:
It'll take me awhile, but after I make some stuff with Evolution Infinity and whichever I decide to get of either RealStrat or RealLPC, I will post some demos in here to compare them for fun (since Orange Tree doesn't have demos like MusicLabs).

Hmm, I wonder how often MusicLabs has sales... :wink: :?:
ppayne
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:19 am

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by ppayne »

Rogar wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 3:13 pm Hmm, I wonder how often MusicLabs has sales... :wink: :?:
I can answer that for you. Never :lol:

At least in the last 10 years I haven't seen any real offers. You only get a cheap upgrade price if the major version changes. That's it.

If I remember correctly, there was also a bundle price for 3 guitars. And because I already had a plugin from MusicLabs, I was offered a discount.

But I've never seen things like summer sales, winter sales, etc.

Patrick
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

ppayne wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 11:16 pm
Rogar wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 3:13 pm Hmm, I wonder how often MusicLabs has sales... :wink: :?:
I can answer that for you. Never :lol:

At least in the last 10 years I haven't seen any real offers.
That's just what I wanted to know, thanks Patrick! Looks like it's about time for me to become $139 lighter then. :)
ppayne
Posts: 417
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:19 am

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by ppayne »

Rogar wrote: Fri Jul 05, 2024 2:03 pm
ppayne wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 11:16 pm
Rogar wrote: Thu Jul 04, 2024 3:13 pm Hmm, I wonder how often MusicLabs has sales... :wink: :?:
I can answer that for you. Never :lol:

At least in the last 10 years I haven't seen any real offers.
That's just what I wanted to know, thanks Patrick! Looks like it's about time for me to become $139 lighter then. :)
To be on the safe side, you should ask MusicLabs. I always do that with the manufacturers. Otherwise you'll be annoyed if an offer suddenly comes a week later. Even if I don't believe that.
Rogar
Posts: 16
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:25 pm

Re: VSTs and plugins for 80s Miami Vice electric guitar sounds? :)

Post by Rogar »

Wow, OTS Evolution Infinity is totally awesome for getting those clean 80s leads like the Miami Vice stuff I was after! (More on that later with audio samples.)
ppayne wrote: Sat Jul 06, 2024 9:12 am To be on the safe side, you should ask MusicLabs. I always do that with the manufacturers. Otherwise you'll be annoyed if an offer suddenly comes a week later. Even if I don't believe that.
Well guess what? You were right! I was almost tempted to just get their discounted bundle for all those ML guitar VSTs but fortunately restrained myself since that'd be overkill, so I reached out to MusicLabs support just in case. Their response:
Thank you for your kind words.

Yes, we do have sales :) The Summer one is coming very soon offering huge discounts: July 16th till August 6th 2024. Stay tuned!
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