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Churro Fanatic
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

I have some embarrassing newbie questions I need to ask.

PREAMP to Virtual Cabinet

I found a good deal on an ENGL E530. Looking forwards to receiving it.

My question is, what's the best way of hooking it into my audio interface?

How I want to use it:

Guitar --> e530 --> Audio Interface --> Reaper --> Virtual Cabinet.

I've been souring the net, and there's conflicting information on whether I should use the headphone out, the normal line outputs or the Frequency Compensated Line outs.

The only thing I'm sure of is that I have to use a TRS 1/4" Stereo Cable (duuh).

Here's a link to the manual of the unit I am buying:
http://englamps.de/wp-content/uploads/OM_E530_Tube_Preamp.pdf

Load Boxes (or recording a 100W amp quietly)

I have a JCM2000, and I absolutely love it's tone. Unfortunately, it's 100W, and I don't get to gig anymore. I have heard conflicting reports on whether a load box will help or not. I would get one with a reactive load. Any information anyone can share about this would be really useful.

Also, I've heard that some people route the FX Send into their audio interface and record that way. That seems to skip the power amp side of things, but if I can get my classic Marshall tones, I'd be happy.

Currently, I have it at really low volumes, and while I am getting pretty good tones I want to improve the situation.

I have a cabinet I really like (A Marshall cabinet from the late 70s), so if possible I'd like to keep that.

Cheers!

I understand that it's easier to do things virtually nowadays, and certainly I like a lot of virtual amps out there. But, now that I finally have my own place and set up a studio, I want to do things old school where I can.
 

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Wait, which JCM2000 do you have? I used to own a TSL100 head, and I recall it having a quite good speaker emulated out. Anyway, some sort of attenuator would help you push the Marshall's poweramp a little harder at sane volumes.

For the Engl, I don't know how this would sound without some sort of poweramp emulation, but I'd imagine what you'd want to do would be either the headphone or line out into your interface, and then throw a cabinet IR on it in the mix. The frequency compensated line out is probably supposed to vaguely similate a cab, but a good IR will do a far better job.
 
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ya boi
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Probably the simplest way is to use the Line Out into the interface. That's primarily what it's there for, though apparently it can also be used to go into a power amp. The Instrument Output would also be sufficient, just run it into the interface as an instrument input instead of line. Those two seem independent of the Frequency Compensated line out and the headphones. The headphone send would also probably work but the other two are meant for such an application.
 

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Churro Fanatic
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for your reply. It gives me a lot of confidence. The preamp arrived today, I can't wait to try it out after work. I am reaching the conclusion that line out is going to be the best way forwards, though I will test headphone out too.

I have the DSL JCM2000, so there's no emulated speaker out. I think the best I could do with my JCM is like the effects loop or something weird like that. The attenuator sounds like a better idea everyday.

Apparently, you don't need a power amp for the ENGL, unless you are going to fire up some big cabs. It has a modest amount of wattage to it.

Thanks again for your advice!
 

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Churro Fanatic
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Probably the simplest way is to use the Line Out into the interface. That's primarily what it's there for, though apparently it can also be used to go into a power amp. The Instrument Output would also be sufficient, just run it into the interface as an instrument input instead of line. Those two seem independent of the Frequency Compensated line out and the headphones. The headphone send would also probably work but the other two are meant for such an application.
This is pure gold to me. Thanks a lot. This gives me a lot of confidence. I shall try it out, hopefully, this evening!
 

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TRS isnt a stereo cable. It's a balanced cable like an XLR. If you run it out of the instrument output then use a TS cable (instrument cable) and gain it up to line level using the hi-z input. If you run it out of the line output use a TRS cable and you dont have to worry about gain becuase it's already line level.
 

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Churro Fanatic
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
TRS isnt a stereo cable. It's a balanced cable like an XLR. If you run it out of the instrument output then use a TS cable (instrument cable) and gain it up to line level using the hi-z input. If you run it out of the line output use a TRS cable and you dont have to worry about gain becuase it's already line level.
OK, let me see if I am getting this correct...baby steps please:

Instrument Output: Instrument cable. Guitar cable with one black ring?

Line output: TRS cable. Cable with two black rings like this:
https://www.gear4music.es/en/G4M/Klotz-1-4-TRS-Jack-1-4-TS-Jacks-Interconnect-Cable-6m/25A8

And then I would insert it into both unbalanced jacks into the left and right output?

I am really sorry. I feel utterly retarded. I get completely confused with balanced/unbalanced/stereo/mono/TS/TRS/Intrument/1/4". I just don't want the damn thing to blow up hahaha.

The part that is really throwing me off in the manual is:

PLEASE ENSURE YOU HEED THE FOLLOWING: If you are using the amp to drive just
one speaker cabinet, connect only one stereo channel via a 1/4" stereo plug. A mono
1/4" plug will short-circuit the poweramp's second channel. If you operate the amp
under these conditions at high volumes for a longer period of time, this may destroy
the amp or other components!
Am I right in thinking that a TRS is a single jack balanced connection on one end and two unbalanced jacks on the other? For left and right?
Do I need to plug something *both* the left and right output channels to stop any explosive results?

This is so frustrating. I feel like there are two languages being spoken which are similar but not the same.
 

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TRS isnt a stereo cable. It's a balanced cable like an XLR. If you run it out of the instrument output then use a TS cable (instrument cable) and gain it up to line level using the hi-z input. If you run it out of the line output use a TRS cable and you dont have to worry about gain becuase it's already line level.
TRS cables are also called stereo cables since they can be used for both purposes. The cable is identical either way, only the circuitry at either end is different.
 

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TRS cables are also called stereo cables since they can be used for both purposes. The cable is identical either way, only the circuitry at either end is different.
I've never heard anyone call them stereo before. Because the cold isn't soldered to the shield it in theory should be able to send a stereo signal.
 

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Churro Fanatic
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well,

I realised I was panicking like a pathetic bitch.

I manned up and just studied it.

I haven't posted here because I got the preamp and have been using it a great deal. It sounds exactly how I want.

Thanks to everyone on this thread for their help.

For future reference:

I used a balanced cable (two black rings, not one) from either headphone out or left line out into my audio interface.

I messed with the various levels and gains until I got a level I was happy with. I am using the ENGL impulse responses from Ownhammer through NadIr.

It works, it sounds fantastic and nothing exploded.

And there was much rejoicing.
 
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