Quick guides

Quick guide – ENGL

ENGL is a well known German amp builder that spread like wildfire in the industry due to their versatile and unique sounding amps. While many of their top amps provide high quality mid to hi-gain tones, they also provide a lot more.

Many plugin developers have taken a go at many of Engl’s products. Some have been great and a few have been the middle of the road.


(in alphabetical order)


The ENGL E646 Victor Smolski is quite simply one of the highest quality amp sims ever developed. It earns this with it’s incredibly high quality tones and the amazing spectrum of genres and applications it gives you over it’s four channels. Metal to country, shred to twang, crunchy rock, whatever you need done with an ENGL twist. It comes with a nice bunch of post effects and a cab section with high quality impulses.


A working man’s type amp. Simple, effective, easy to dial in and not a lot of frills or extra junk to mess around with on the panel. Even with a simplistic design, the E765 Retro tube covers a lot of ground. High quality across the whole plugin is a Brainworx thing, they just don’t do anything half way. The Retro tube is tucked into the plugin with a great bunch of impulses and some useful after effects to enhance the tones. Clean to face melting hi-gain, your call.


Rockrack comes up a lot in our quick guides but so does Brainworx, it’s a comforting factor. Rockrack offers a selection of amps and one of those amps is based on the popular ENGL E530. If you know of the E530, you’ll know it’s capable of some incredible tones that range over plenty of genres and styles. Rockrack in general is a can’t miss. It goes on sale cheap fairly often and for what you get, even the full price is more than reasonable. Amps, impulses and a few handy ways to help the tone cut after the cab section are all included.


All bow to a legendary piece of freeware that still holds up after all these years. The LePou freeware pack lives on and every amp in it still delivers great results. The LE456 is a Powerball inspired amp sim with great quality for zero dollars. I don’t care how old these sims are and how quickly the market moves, they can still out perform various paid plugins. Everyone needs to have the LePou collection in their arsenal. All LePou sims require an impulse loader.


Vadim Taranov at PVAmps has been making reamp driven amp sims for a long time now. He has many ENGL modeled creations available for free and more on the way. These are 32-bit windows only but bridge nicely into 64-bit without an issue. One channel a piece and you will need a poweramp and impulse loader but hey, free stuff!! Check out the ENGL and other offerings from PVAmps!

THERMIONK (discontinued):

Thermionik is a huge collection of amps created by Kazrog. Every amp in the collection is strong and the value is off the charts. One of the amps in the bunch was inspired by the ENGL Savage 120. It’s a bit hard to tame at times but I also felt the same way about the real deal. The Damage 120 as it’s known in this case is a very cool plugin that sounds pretty realistic and delivers more than just hi-gain. There’s also a nice crunch channel.

TSE X50 2.4.8:

The X50 2.4.8 suite from TSE obviously features the X50 as the face and heart of the plugin but TSE also included their X30 plugin as well. The X30 is based on the ENGL E530 and it just makes an even stronger case for the X50 2.4.8 being one of the most total and complete package amp sims you can buy today. It comes with two amps, an awesome impulse section, pedals and more. Check it out.


Full amp suites have always had some product crossover in the amp selection and Engl amps are usually one of those brands you see in all of them. No complaints here but if you aren’t a fan of the powerball or E530, there may not be a lot for you. The best Engl offering in a full-suite for me might be either Amplitube 4, Overloud or Helix Native. All have some pretty decent Engl inspired stuff that does the job pretty well.

ENGL amp designer Horst Langer and Richie Blackmore
%d bloggers like this: