AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix Review


Most guitarists can recall the first time they saw Jimi Hendrix perform his Star Spangled Banner solo at Woodstock, and the reaction is always the same - blown away! Garage band and professional guitarists have strived to achieve that Jimi Hendrix sound ever since. Now, over forty years later, the experts at IK Multimedia believe they have captured the essence of the Jimi Hendrix audio experience.  Have the attained their goal?
AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix follows along the same approach as IK Multimedia's previous customized AmpliTube Slash edition, in that they have taken the time and applied their expertise in matching the sound of the artist's instrument as closely as they can given the current limits of iOS and audio technology. In the case of both the original AmpliTube and AmpliTube Slash editions, IK Multimedia succeeded in each product. But given the extreme range of performance that Hendrix poured into each song, emulating his sound in software is a tall order.  Remarkably, IK Multimedia has captured that lightening in a bottle.
This Jimi Hendrix edition of AmpliTube contains all the features of the original AmpliTube. Refer to my earlier reviews of AmpliTube 2.5 and IK Multimedia's iRig Stomp. Song imports, single track recording (upgradable to 8 tracks with an in-app purchase), the helpful NO VOICE feature that amazingly strips away lead vocals from imported songs (great for learning or playing along with lead or rhythm guitar parts), a tuner and metronome, MIDI support and more.
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In addition to emulating the noise filters and fuzz effects that Hendrix employed in his musical works, AmpliTube optimally works with the aforementioned iRig Stomp to imbue that wah-wah sound that Hendrix was so distinctly known for. And the software itself contains the simulated stomp boxes, amplifiers, cabinets and mics to emulate the rainbow of sonic weaves that are Jimi Hendrix's signature trademarks.
Considering hundreds of dollars a guitarist would have to spend to acquire the real-world stomp boxes, not to mention the multitude of hours necessary to arrange those boxes and cables in the right order on a pedal board with the right settings, it's a steal that IK Multimedia is selling AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix for its $14.99 US original sale price. Existing AmpliTube owners can also purchase the Jimi Hendrix setup as an in-app purchase for the same price. Even more helpful in the time-saving department is that fact that IK Multimedia have already configured presets for the entire Jimi Hendrix discography, meaning you don't have to touch any of the emulated effects dials or bypass buttons to dial in the effects that sound like Voodoo Child or All Along the Watchtower. It's an incredible timesaver and one that boosted my enthusiasm for the app even higher.
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Two versions exist, one for the iPad and another for the iPhone. I prefer the iPad version thanks to the additional screen real estate and easy access to the variety of features AmpliTube contains. But if portability is your primary objective, the iPhone edition has all the functions of the iPad edition compacted into a more condense user experience.
Overall, AmpliTube Jimi Hendrix is a must-have for any iPhone or iPad owning guitarist who is a fan of this incredibly talented artist. Download the software, hook up your gear and when you play the first few bars of Purple Haze, your smile will grin from ear to ear as you channel the essential sound of Jimi Hendrix through your fingers.
Developer: IK Multimedia
Price: $14.99
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
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Mike Riley is a frequent contributor to several technical publications and specializes in emerging technologies and new development trends. Mike was previously employed by RR Donnelley as the company’s Chief Scientist, responsible for determining innovative technical approaches to improve the company’s internal and external content services. Mike also co-hosted Computer Connection, a technology enthusiast show broadcast on Tribune Media's CLTV.