DSM Simplifier or Kotzen Flyrig for silent direct rig?

Baba

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So, in a PM, I was told that the Simplifier sounded "thin" and "gross" :LOL:, so I wanted to get some more opinions, as I've never heard one.

My story:

I have some gigs coming up where, the best solution would be going direct and using the place's wedges and/or IEMs, and leaving my amp home. The rig would be my Stomp XL, using dirt pedal models and fx into a clean "amp" platform. I already do this at casinos and such, where they provide an amp, and it's great, so I'm sticking with that.

So, I'm basically looking to replace the "amp", with an ANALOG (I said analog, read it again), clean amp simulator. I'm pretty much sold on an RK5 v2, because I really like the way Tech 21's Blonde/clean platforms sound directly into wedges/FoH, and, I would have use for the onboard delay, reverb, and compression circuit. I could actually save some blocks inside of the Stomp, by using the RK5's effects. Add to that, an RK5 could be an entire backup rig, should that need ever arise, mid-gig.

Having said that, I've never heard the DSM, and while it doesn't have the effects of the RK5, it's more tweakable, (not always a good thing for me, but still), cheaper, and I'd hate to leave money on the table if it's the "better" choice.

Has anyone here had both, or tried one and then the other?

For those in the cheap seats:

1. This rig WILL BE EXACTLY HOW I DESCRIBED IT, so don't suggest another modeler, or any other piece of gear that isn't a direct with XLR, analog clean simulator. I'm not hearing it.

2. I am already at my block limit in the Stomp, which is fine, but if I were to add a clean amp model, I'd lose another block that I really need.

3. See #2, same reasoning applies to just using all modeling and no other gear, and I really need to keep it small. I have a Helix too, but I'm not using it for these flydates/casino gigs.
 
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I haven't used the Tech 21 stuff, but I created several rigs exactly like you described with a Stomp XL and a separate pedal for amp/cab modeling. I tried both the DSM Simplifier and the Simplifier Deluxe, as well as the Strymon Iridium and even a Boss GT-1000 Core.

My thoughts:

The HX Stomp does a great job in general of handling all the effects. It's a mature platform with all kinds of options. The switching is really great and easy to figure out, and it's pretty versatile. Adding a separate pedal for doing amp and cab modeling is generally really cool. It frees up a ton of DSP in the Stomp just like you'd expect.

The hard part is finding amp/cab modeling that does what you want and works well with pedals, either digital or analog.

I thought the DSM Simplifiers were underwhelming to be honest. They sound very direct, like you are running a compressor and EQ into the board. Which is cool for like 80's style cleans and funk but not for rock and roll. The clipping was not very amp like to me and sounded like a cheap overdrive pedal running into the board. They also didn't take pedals well at all, the output was pretty quiet, and it was a pain to get the channels matched on the Deluxe version. I will say that the Deluxe sounded a lot better than the standard because there's a wider gain range and built in reverb, although the reverb wasn't all that great and the gain still sounded like an overdrive pedal instead of an amp.

The Strymon Iridium was IMO much better, although it's not on your list and it's digital. It took pedals WAY better and was a much better pedal platform both with real pedals and in the effects loop of the HX Stomp. I liked that quite a bit. Also the room reverb is really good and the controls are a lot simpler. What I did not like was that the amp tone was really strongly EQ'd and over time I realized the Marshall model had WAY too much bass and not enough clarity. And I couldn't adjust that out or change the IR to get away from it.

After three rounds of this, I got sick of the pedal carousel and sold it all to get an Axe FX 3 (again). 90% of the time, I'm playing through the JCM 800 model and it sounds killer to me. I've even set the JCM 800 to be kind of clean and run pedals into the front of it, and it sounds way better than any of the standalone modeling pedals. But I realize that's not what you're after.

If I were to build another little rig similar to what you're describing, I'd probably try the Walrus Audio ACS1 amp simulator along with maybe a higher gain drive pedal and a direct box at the end of the chain. I'd use the Stomp for all the wet effects and/or character stuff, I'd keep the amp sim as an always on pedal, and use the extra high gain pedal for when I need that sound.

But in your shoes, I would order the DSM Simplifier and see if it works for you, assuming you just need a clean channel. It does clean "amp" and cab sim along with DI and you specifically don't want any other options, so see if that works. If not, return it and try a different route.

Here's a pic of one of the variations:

52252009773_77ac421f14_b.jpg
 
Not sure if this helps… I had the FlyRig RK (not version 2). The overdrive is great sounding but rather compressed and a bit dark IMO (but the tone control has decent range). As far as I understand you are only going to use the clean channel, so this would be of no concern.
 
I haven't used the Tech 21 stuff, but I created several rigs exactly like you described with a Stomp XL and a separate pedal for amp/cab modeling. I tried both the DSM Simplifier and the Simplifier Deluxe, as well as the Strymon Iridium and even a Boss GT-1000 Core.

My thoughts:

The HX Stomp does a great job in general of handling all the effects. It's a mature platform with all kinds of options. The switching is really great and easy to figure out, and it's pretty versatile. Adding a separate pedal for doing amp and cab modeling is generally really cool. It frees up a ton of DSP in the Stomp just like you'd expect.

The hard part is finding amp/cab modeling that does what you want and works well with pedals, either digital or analog.

I thought the DSM Simplifiers were underwhelming to be honest. They sound very direct, like you are running a compressor and EQ into the board. Which is cool for like 80's style cleans and funk but not for rock and roll. The clipping was not very amp like to me and sounded like a cheap overdrive pedal running into the board. They also didn't take pedals well at all, the output was pretty quiet, and it was a pain to get the channels matched on the Deluxe version. I will say that the Deluxe sounded a lot better than the standard because there's a wider gain range and built in reverb, although the reverb wasn't all that great and the gain still sounded like an overdrive pedal instead of an amp.

The Strymon Iridium was IMO much better, although it's not on your list and it's digital. It took pedals WAY better and was a much better pedal platform both with real pedals and in the effects loop of the HX Stomp. I liked that quite a bit. Also the room reverb is really good and the controls are a lot simpler. What I did not like was that the amp tone was really strongly EQ'd and over time I realized the Marshall model had WAY too much bass and not enough clarity. And I couldn't adjust that out or change the IR to get away from it.

After three rounds of this, I got sick of the pedal carousel and sold it all to get an Axe FX 3 (again). 90% of the time, I'm playing through the JCM 800 model and it sounds killer to me. I've even set the JCM 800 to be kind of clean and run pedals into the front of it, and it sounds way better than any of the standalone modeling pedals. But I realize that's not what you're after.

If I were to build another little rig similar to what you're describing, I'd probably try the Walrus Audio ACS1 amp simulator along with maybe a higher gain drive pedal and a direct box at the end of the chain. I'd use the Stomp for all the wet effects and/or character stuff, I'd keep the amp sim as an always on pedal, and use the extra high gain pedal for when I need that sound.

But in your shoes, I would order the DSM Simplifier and see if it works for you, assuming you just need a clean channel. It does clean "amp" and cab sim along with DI and you specifically don't want any other options, so see if that works. If not, return it and try a different route.

Here's a pic of one of the variations:

52252009773_77ac421f14_b.jpg

Thanks for the detailed response, a few things to think about here. :giggle:

I have asked over at the other place too . . .
 
Thanks for the detailed response, a few things to think about here. :giggle:

I have asked over at the other place too . . .

What kind of clean amp are you after? Like if you could have a backline amp, what would that be?

Is it like a top 40 band or doing more classic rock music?
 
What kind of clean amp are you after? Like if you could have a backline amp, what would that be?

Is it like a top 40 band or doing more classic rock music?

Good question. I never really gave it much thought, since you get what you get at these places. I guess something in the Fender realm, like a Twin.

I used to own a few Riveras, which had the best cleans, but nobody models those.

Our band does more top 40/party rock, no classic rock really.
 
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Good question. I never really gave it much thought, since you get what you get at these places. I guess something in the Fender realm, like a Twin.

I used to own a few Riveras, which had the best cleans, but nobody models those.

Our band does more top 40/party rock, no classic rock really.

out of curiosity are you interested in analog for a particular reason? Or looking specifically for something that has xlr outs?
 
@GuitarDave has been a big proponent of the DSM stuff? I would go Flyrig all day; especially as you are a fan of the Tech21 stuff historically speaking.

Still am a fan of the DSM.

I'm used to playing a clean Fender tone with pedals for OD and for me it works great. Prefer it to the Helix/Kemper/Axe, Ethos, Flyrig, Revival Drive, etc.

So far the DSM is the closest I've found to using a real amp. It's simple, sounds great and no menus.

Get a Joyo ZGP and/or a good isolated power supply. It's analog so that will matter.
 
out of curiosity are you interested in analog for a particular reason? Or looking specifically for something that has xlr outs?

I have found that, IMO, from best to worst, when talking strictly about wedge/FOH/IEMs, it goes:

1. Tubes (either preamp with a cab sim or a full amp direct, or even mic'd)
2. Analog (Tech 21 seems to still be the king at this, going back to the GT2)
3. Digital

They are all different versions of "good" IMO, but I'm talking about full, present, in your face, natural amp tones . . .

Having said all that, and having started this thread, I think I'm realizing that, my Stomp XL, controlling my H&K Grandmeister head via midi, running silently (no cab), is pretty much the smallest and lightest way I can have full tube tone, multi-fx, midi switching, and poly capo (that is VERY important), into wedge/FOH/IEMs, and I need to calm the F down :LOL: .

Add a speaker cab, and now you have my entire rig. I really wish I could get off this "shrinking everything down as small as possible" thing, but I've been doing that since the 90's. :rolleyes:
 
One potential product that would be a really cool solution is the upcoming Two Notes Revolt.

It's an analog amp sim with three channels, a preamp tube that has real voltage going through it, onboard cab simulation, balanced XLR output, MIDI integration, all the stuff. I think that plus an HX FX would be a killer fly rig.
rvg_lightbox.jpg
 
The Strymon Iridium was IMO much better, although it's not on your list and it's digital. It took pedals WAY better and was a much better pedal platform both with real pedals and in the effects loop of the HX Stomp. I liked that quite a bit. Also the room reverb is really good and the controls are a lot simpler. What I did not like was that the amp tone was really strongly EQ'd and over time I realized the Marshall model had WAY too much bass and not enough clarity. And I couldn't adjust that out or change the IR to get away from it.
The Marshall model on the Iridium is definitely its weakest part. I don't think it's a great pedal for overdriven sounds on its own either. But throw your favorite drive pedals in front of it and it really starts kicking! I got some really good tones from the Strymon Riverside -> Iridium Fender or Vox model. I think the Iridium might work better if it's treated more as a clean pedal platform device.

I'd love to see Strymon make a V2 version. Low/high cut for cab sims would be nice and working on the amp models a bit. I felt that compared to whatever firmware my FM3 had (fw 4? 5?) when I had the Iridium, the Fractal equivalent models sounded more "complex" overall but the Strymon was not bad by any means.

Looking at my local used market, the Strymons that get resold the most tend to be the Iridium and Mobius. Atm there's 5 Iridiums for sale.

I don't think any company has nailed the "compact amp sim pedal" yet. I use the BluGuitar Amp 1 ME when I can plug into a real cab but it's not anywhere near as small as the Iridium and not great for direct sounds on its own.
 
One potential product that would be a really cool solution is the upcoming Two Notes Revolt.

It's an analog amp sim with three channels, a preamp tube that has real voltage going through it, onboard cab simulation, balanced XLR output, MIDI integration, all the stuff. I think that plus an HX FX would be a killer fly rig.
rvg_lightbox.jpg

Good lord, NOW you're talking!
 
One potential product that would be a really cool solution is the upcoming Two Notes Revolt.

It's an analog amp sim with three channels, a preamp tube that has real voltage going through it, onboard cab simulation, balanced XLR output, MIDI integration, all the stuff. I think that plus an HX FX would be a killer fly rig.
rvg_lightbox.jpg

Two Notes “No Man’s Sky” Revolt
 
BRB, trying to figure out what gigs I could use the Revolt for . . . :LOL:

Let's see $399.00, it would more than pay for itself after 2 gigs, (1 gig depending on the gig, lol), so, I'd say 4-5 gigs and it would be well worth it :giggle:
 
BRB, trying to figure out what gigs I could use the Revolt for . . . :LOL:

Let's see $399.00, it would more than pay for itself after 2 gigs, (1 gig depending on the gig, lol), so, I'd say 4-5 gigs and it would be well worth it :giggle:

I’m getting one simply to compare against Synergy modules. Could be good value for money if comparable quality.
 
I’m getting one simply to compare against Synergy modules. Could be good value for money if comparable quality.

I think I'm forcing it a little, I could "shoehorn" it in for a couple/few upcoming gigs, but realistically, I wouldn't really NEED something like this until like May or June. There are quite a few places where a cab onstage with me, and more importantly for the band, is actually BETTER, than not having one or just going through wedges.

So funny, during every soundcheck:

person: "do you need any guitar in your monitor?"
band: "nah"

middle of the show - they can't hear me unless I'm cranking it . . . :facepalm
 
There are quite a few places where a cab onstage with me, and more importantly for the band, is actually BETTER, than not having one or just going through wedges.

So funny, during every soundcheck:

person: "do you need any guitar in your monitor?"
band: "nah"

middle of the show - they can't hear me unless I'm cranking it . . .

This is why I'm back to a simple 1x12 combo. It's just generally easier in most situations I play. But like always it's helpful to able to run a mic/direct feed as well.
 
This is why I'm back to a simple 1x12 combo. It's just generally easier in most situations I play. But like always it's helpful to able to run a mic/direct feed as well.

Same.

Man, my last band situation really did a number on me. Always being told to turn down, then going to silent stage for so long, etc. It’s still hard for me to let loose sometimes, and have at it with an amp.
 
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