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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is from a new (to me) company called Black Rooster and their new amp called the Cypress TT-15 emulates a famous low wattage amp. You can run it through the built in 2X12 cab simulator or turn it off and run it through your own cab sims if you want to. I heard the demos on the website and it sounds like it excels at the kind of tone that's slightly grittier than clean but not quite "crunchy" either. Now the thing is when you download this you don't just get the amp sim, you also have the option to install three more plug-ins if you want. Here's what they say in the PDF about the TT-15 as well as the other plug-ins called Canary, VLA-2A and VLA-3A:

"Cypress TT-15

Black Rooster Audio‘s free guitar amp head. Meticulously modeled after a very versatile, yet uniquely sounding low wattage amplifier, the Black Rooster Audio Cypress TT-15 comes to you at an unbeatable price point: It‘s free! With its no nonsense approach and only six intuitive controls, the Cypress TT-15 will help to get the job done right away, no matter if you‘re looking for clean through crunchy guitar tones or if you want to achieve biting, distorted lead sounds. We also included a simple 2x12 cabinet simulation that can be bypassed if you prefer other solutions or if you‘re feeding into an external poweramp/cabinet stage.

Canary

The Canary plug-in has been designed to support you in creating the most powerful and convincing drums you have ever mixed. Our goal was to create a plug-in that gives you control over some basic parameters of a drum signal that you may have lost during the recording process or they probably haven‘t been there in the first place, such as a tone, attack, sustain and some very basic filtering, which in sum define the natural sound of the shell. And who doesn‘t know a drummer, who has some good gear, perfectly tuned so it sounds nice on stage or in his or her practicing garage. But when recorded it starts to sound like cardboard. The Canary is here to help you, synthetically adding those missing features after the damage is done, allowing you to 'tune' your drums.

VLA-2A Vintage Leveling Amplifier

After many many hours of hard work Black Rooster Audio is proud to finally present the VLA-2A plug-in - the finest and most faithful emulation of THE optoelectronic compressor of the late 1960s. We have put all our knowledge, craftsmanship and heart into designing the most authentic native emulation available on the market to this date. We recommend the VLA-2A especially for vocals and drums. It also performs outstandingly well on bass or even on the master bus. Sensibly adjusting the gain and compression settings will make your signals shine. Embrace the simplicity and beauty of optoelectronic compression!

VLA-3A Vintage Leveling Amplifier

Black Rooster Audio is excited to present the VLA-3A plug-in, one of the most authentic native emulations of its analog brother from the 70s. It takes aspects from its predecessor and combines it with a discrete solid-state circuitry. It still maintains the T4 based opto-compressor sound but features a quicker, more modern and brighter response. This is our go-to processor for vocals, but it also works outstandingly well when bringing out the ambience of percussive material and helps to put some glue into your mixes!"

BTW the VLA-2A and VLA-3A are 14 day demos. They cost $129.00 but the Cypress amp and the Canary plug-ins are free.

I was playing through the Cypress TT-15 earlier this evening and this is not the amp to use if you want clean tones. Even at the lowest drive levels you're still going to get some crunch. Now, the only caveat about these plug-ins is, in order to download them you have to set up an account with the Black Rooster website. I know there are some that probably don't like this and I can't say I blame them but if you do want to check them out I'd recommend setting up an account. From what they say on the website, there should be more free plug-ins coming up in the future. So if you want to check out the audio of the amp demos, read more and download the plug-ins, go to Audio Plugins - Black Rooster Audio
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You're welcome amagras. I'm glad you like it. I should also say that I'm taking back what I said about not being able to get a reasonably clean sound. I messed around with the amp again last night and this time I turned off the built in cabinet simulator and used some different ones and I was able to get it sounding a lot cleaner. Another very simple trick for getting a cleaner sound is turning down the volume of the guitar. The only thing I don't like about this amp at higher gain volumes is the background hiss. I guess if I am going to use higher gain with this I'll have to use a noise gate. I also like the Canary plugin although I haven't tried it on drums yet. I just saw a couple of YouTube videos that show what it can do.

Player99, you can get this amp sounding good by doing what I did and using a noise gate and a different cabinet simulator. This amp is more versatile that it first appears to be. Here are two YouTube videos that demonstrate this:

This first person uses it for Heavy Metal tones:


And this person uses it for more rock/harder rock tones:

 

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Although it sounds very much like a TT with its particularly annoying clean, I suppose it will prove useful on productions with a lot of stacked guitars, sort of what Mutt Lange did with the Rockmans on Hysteria. I record a lot of leads so I based my review on getting a good tone for that but I'm sure with some good IRs it can be used for many styles, also, what sounds good in isolation not always work in the mix, I kind of like the cab they included.

About the noise, do you think they introduced it on purpose as a part of the modelling? I've seen that before but it usually can be turned off, I mean, why not? it's a digital recreation!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Although it sounds very much like a TT with its particularly annoying clean, I suppose it will prove useful on productions with a lot of stacked guitars, sort of what Mutt Lange did with the Rockmans on Hysteria. I record a lot of leads so I based my review on getting a good tone for that but I'm sure with some good IRs it can be used for many styles, also, what sounds good in isolation not always work in the mix, I kind of like the cab they included.

About the noise, do you think they introduced it on purpose as a part of the modelling? I've seen that before but it usually can be turned off, I mean, why not? it's a digital recreation!
It's funny that you mention that. Back in 1996 when Roland got the whole virtual guitar/virtual amp ball rolling with the VG-8 they were proud of the fact that they had modeled the Strat pickups without the 60 hertz hum. Believe it or not, people were complaining about it sounding too clean. I guess they missed the hum. :) I agree about digital re-creations. The amp hiss isn't necessary. I guess we've come to the point where software designers feel the need to accurately model everything in the signal path. Hopefully they'll come up with an update that eliminates the noise.
 
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