Impulses are incredibly hard to score in the traditional sense and we struggled to find a way we could properly represent each developer while also making sure to give our readers enough information to at least get them headed in the right direction. We went over a number of formats and none of them felt right. One thing that makes impulse reviews tough is that every company has their own way of doing thing so finding a common ground to score things was impossible.
Instead, we give you a brief overview, popular products, our favorite products, brand/speaker/mic selection and more for each developer. We tried to tailor each overview to the individual developer by working with what we had and taking all factors into consideration.
We don’t get too crazy on the tech specs of every impulse pack because the developers do that for you on their websites. We have two links to each developer page so you can research the specs on every product or the full info on each developers methods.
Every company out there has a ton of very high quality offerings but as mentioned, they also all do things their own way. Some libraries are monstrous with every mic position, every speaker variation and every other option you could imagine and then some libraries are more condensed to make the search a little quicker. I prefer both but I know people that swear either way.
LEARN YOUR STUFF!!!! I cannot stress enough that every guitarist learn about the mics, mic positions, mic combos, speakers and cabinet types that are best for your needs and uses. Know what everything inside the packs are so you can get the tones you are looking for and use the packs to their potential. There’s a huge difference between a Shure 57 and a Royer 121 or an open and closed back speaker. Know the differences, know the gear and know how to use it all. If you prefer less options to sort through and prefer not to learn about the mics and speakers, some developers provide condensed and simplified libraries that are meant to plug and play. However, we still absolutely suggest getting to know at least the industry standard gear and it’s uses.
Enjoy our run through the impulse universe. We don’t recommend that everyone buy every impulse on the market but we do advocate for having a versatile and well rounded impulse collection to aid in the pursuit of your perfect tone for any application.
The impulse landscape has what feels like an almost unlimited amount of options. Then you have all the mics, mic positions, numbers, speaker types and it can be really confusing trying to negotiate your way through larger libraries. Most developers fully explain impulses and the way they lay out their files.
Here’s a few resources that explain things better than we could.
Premier Guitar article: All About Impulse Responses
Joey Sturgis Tones article on Getting started with impulse responses
Or check this video where Brian Wampler of Wampler Pedals speak about Impulse Responses:
** FOR KEMPER USERS ** Right now we do not have our own Kemper capabilities at HASR HQ but we have received a lot of requests for reviews on Kemper profiles and other Kemper features. If we get a Kemper for the HQ, we will add a Kemper section for each impulse developer overview.