Edit Mode is where you do the tweaking.
To put the unit into Edit Mode, simply step
on the Enter switch. From there, you use
the various buttons to navigate through
the menus, offering the ability to change
anything from cabinets and amps to Global
input levels. Yes, it certainly takes some
getting used to, and at first, I often found
myself just going to the mouse and doing
it manually like I’ve always done. But the
objective was to learn how to use it on the
floor, so I persisted.
It does become quite simple to stomp
through a variety of sounds until coming
across one to build upon. From there,
selecting the various cabinets, mics and
effects is what makes this product so useful.
However, even after learning how to
control the parameters with my feet, I still
found it easier to combine that technique
with a mouse. Maybe you can’t teach an
old dog too many new tricks, but that’s
how I feel.
Aside from simply tweaking amps, you can
also dig into the control menu, which is
where you assign any of the expression pedals,
knobs and switches. This unit can also
go quite deep. Certain things, like Sequence
patch switching mode, are critical to understand
if you’re playing live, as you don’t
want to stomp up to patch 2,344 during a
show. Once things are in place, you can easily
setup up to 16 custom-ordered sequences,
with up to 999 patches in each.
StompIO is truly about the integration
of software and hardware. The core software
provided with the package is called
Amplitube X-Gear. X-Gear is essentially a
shell that houses Amplitube 2, Jimi Hendrix,
SVX and Metal (and future realeases).
All these software programs live within a
single interface, which means you can mix
and match anything (amps, cabinets, mics,
stomp boxes, etc) within the bundle.
The number of choices available borders
on overwhelming. There are over 150 modeled
pieces of gear in total. There are two
separate software pedalboards available,
with up to six pedals on each. You can
actually run them all together into a single
amp; 12 pedals can be strung together
for a massive chain. There are 26 different
amps, 26 EQ stages and 11 different
power amps. Any of these can be mixed
and matched to make custom sounds.
As for cabinets, there are 33 different models,
and a variety of microphones. There
are also two separate rack systems available,
with up to four modules in each (and
they can be ganged into a chain of eight).
Like anything else, some sounds are better
than others (even after tweaking), but you
can really get some killer tones with this unit.
Another great feature in X-Gear is what
they call the Speed Trainer. It’s a playback
device that lets you drag and drop songs
into it and alter their pitch and tempo.
You can also set loop points, and I found it
great to drag in drum loops to practice to.
It makes you want to play, which is always
good in my book.
StompIO, in conjunction with the
Amplitube software, is a powerful combo.
The variety of sounds that can be achieved
and controlled from the floor is impressive.
Whether you are comfortable having
a laptop run your rig in a live situation or
not is a personal issue, but this package is
certainly up for the task. Aside from its live
application, it can be a powerful tool for
studio-based DAW recording—with both
guitar and bass. The fact that you can use
it with Pro Tools, Logic, Cubase, live and in
many other ways makes it far more than a
one trick pony.
you want a flexible, powerful controller
interface that effortlessly integrates
hardware and software.
emailing and web surfing stretches
your computer skills to their limit.