Have you ever wished you could capture the exact sound of your rig, digitally? TONEX Capture (from the minds behind IK Multimedia) is the guitar accessory that lets you do just that. Read on to hear why we’re so excited about it, and why you need it as part of your setup.
TONEX Capture is one of the most exciting and underrated guitar accessories out there. Essentially, it allows you to perfectly capture the tone and sound of your amp and store it on your interface. Capture is designed to work in tandem with TONEX guitar modeling and tone modeling software. Yet, what makes it stand out is its ability to copy your tone directly from real life to the workstation in front of you. From here, you can then play with it to your heart’s content. This ease of use and clean, smart way of pinpointing tone make it one of the most exciting guitar accessories this year. Capture fills a much-needed niche and does it smoothly and intuitively.
For TONEX Capture to work its magic, you simply place it between your guitar amp and interface in the signal chain. Capture connects to your audio interface and then the output of your amp is connected back to it. This means that the signal from your amp goes directly to capture. The program then works to feed that signal to your computer. Lastly, it then captures and preserves your tone for you to model it with other TONEX accessories such as TONEX SE, which comes free with it.
After setup, Capture offers player and modeler sections. Of these, the modeler lets you capture tone and work with an amp and cab, complex rig, stompbox, amp, or stompbox and amp.
Once you do this, the program also breaks down the signal chain for you by color coding. t will also prompt you to select which interface you’re using. Simultaneously, it shows you which input you connect to your guitar and which you connect to your microphone (if modeling a whole cabinet setup), and so on. This is one of the smoothest and most helpful features of its setup process. It makes your first capture totally intuitive, just walking you through it.
Capture then prompts you to check the input and other levels such as return. Then, you can move forward to the fourth stage, the part that it is really all about.
The actual Tone Capture process:
The actual capture process of your tone doesn’t require you to play your instrument at all, as TONEX Capture doesn’t work like the recording process. Instead, it sends frequencies to your rig and these allow the program to figure out how exactly your setup sounds.
This is then modeled within the ‘training’ stage of the process for accuracy. Predictably, more accurate tone captures take longer for the program to process. This can sometimes be up to an hour, so if you want to play around with this it’s best to set aside some time. Essentially think of this process as the AI learning the ins and outs of your tone.
To finish up, the review section requires you to check the accuracy. It does this by allowing you to listen to its model of your tone and then switch back to your amp and play. This feature is also a bonus, as it means you don’t have to save captures that aren’t accurate or that you don’t like.
What makes it stand out?
Honestly, TONEX Capture is just really really intuitive and does what it does very well. However, there’s more than meets the eye to this accessory. It’s not just about capturing amp tone in the instances that you want a specific sound. Tonex Capture works more like a portable laboratory to experiment and tinker with your sound. Why? That’s because depending on how you connect it, Capture can snapshot the sound of your entire cabinet. You can then experiment with how it would work with other amps, mics, and features by using the rest of the TONEX range. Likewise, it can capture the sound of pedals if they are placed in the same position as the amp.
The free plugins they include are also designed to make this one of the most fulfilling musical experimentation processes. With TONEX capture, IKMultimedia also offer you the FX modeling software of AmpliTube 5 SE and the AmpliTube TONEX SE plugin application.
What is so good about tonex capture?
TONEX Capture is ACCURATE.
Capture also opens up a whole new world of amp and tone modeling. It doesn’t have to work in tandem with the rest of the TONEX range but it can and if so, it means you can then play around with the captured tone from your amp.
It also has installed a GND lift button which breaks the connection with the ground, minimizing ground loops. These are circulating noise currents that can create hums when picked up by equipment, another part of how it works so cleanly and well.
Capture also allows you to record anywhere, regardless of soundproofing or if you have microphones available. As a result, it’s invaluable for travel and can quickly become part of your recording process.
The sonic experimentation potential it has is also worth mentioning again. Unlike preset amp sound and other tone modeling software, capture allows you to have an unprecedented level of personalization. This is because it works in direct connection with your pre-existing gear. Capture is, in this way, a really good tool for organically experimenting with and developing your sound.
Lastly, if you want more than the treasure trove of abilities to reinvent your sound to your heart’s content, Capture also has an online community, the ToneNET. Here, users can upload their own modeled tones. Plus, they can gain access to presets and download tones from other users.
Bonus: Includes FREE AmpliTube 5 SE and TONEX Capture SE applications for both Mac and PC.
Is there anything bad about it?
There’s not much bad to say about Capture except that it requires some skill to get working in the first place. Capturing your tone isn’t immediately easy, and some of your models might not be perfect, but this is part of the process of using it. Sometimes you need to tweak things, but ultimately this is a great accessory that is as exciting and relevant this year as when it first came out.
Tonex capture availability:
TONEX Capture is available from the IK Multimedia for around 300 EUR website but also from other retailers such as Thomann and works for both Mac and PC. You can click this link to access IK Muldimedia’s product page, and if you use this link to buy the product, we will be getting a small kickback, which we appreciate and need to fund the idesignsound.com project.
Tonex capture is a very exciting accessory at first glance and looking deeper it reveals so much more. This is especially in terms of shaking up the way you relate to your entire studio setup. It’s versatile and keeps providing. Plus, it remains useful as you develop your sound, both recording specific tones and as an experimental tool.