Two Notes Captor X vs. Suhr RL-IR

THAWK819

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I'm looking for a combination of quality attentuation and home recording, and both of these units seem to be great value for the money at their respective price points, but I'm having a very hard time choosing between them.

One way I'd like to try using them (if it makes any sense to do so; I'm a total noob at home recording setups), would be to disconnect the speaker cab from my amp head, play the amp head directly into one of these 2 units, into my laptop to take advantage of the cab sims and other DAW virtual goodies, and out through some type of smaller stereo speaker that I assume would be output from my laptop. The idea here is I would be able to record with a DAW software like Reaper or something, and still have an ultra quiet output in the room.

My main questions are:

1. Is this kind of setup possible, realistic, or just plain stupiud?

2. If possible, would one of these units work better for that kind of setup than the other?

3. Is either of them a good enough attentuator to just play through my actual 2x12 speaker cab and get decent low volume tones? (I already tried a JHS Little Black Amp Box in the effects loop and don't love it)
 

Hecubus

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I have the Suhr.
1. Yes, this is what it is for. You can route the signal to your DAW, headphones, studio monitors, computer speakers, PA, etc.
2. I have no experience with Two Notes.
3. No, you can't use the Suhr as an attenuator. You can play through your speaker cab and another output at the same time, but the unit only controls the volume to the other output (amp volume comes through speaker cab). This is awesome for using your amp as a stage monitor and routing the signal to the front of house (replaces the need to mic the cab).

I find the Suhr is the perfect solution for getting cranked amp tones at home/practice/recording/and club friendly volumes. You can also easily load any 3rd party IRs from Celestion or others right onto the unit. The included Suhr IRs are great though. I hope this helps.
 

Brek

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I like my two notes, it has a fixed -20db as well as straight through (i think thats a bit redundant) or work as a full resistive load for cab sims. for the dosh i paid I am really digging the two notes. I had the suhr but sold it as it was only a load box. Both sounded equally similar.
 

THAWK819

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Hmmmm... and the Captor X version of the Two Notes apparently can be used as just an attenuator without hooking up an external power source and can do fixed attentuations at either -20db or -38db... in addition to the line out into DAW functions. Thanks for the info, this was very helpful. I'm leaning more heavily towards the Two Notes now.
 

kelsodeez

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I bought my gf a two note and she's been using it a lot as an attenuator for playing her stack at normal volumes and also when she plays bass with her band, she uses it as a DI box. We haven't messed with the cab simulator too much but for how versatile it is, I can recommend it
 

SWeAT hOg

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Two Notes is solid. I have the V1 Captor and it's a fantastic piece of kit.
 

redking

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I'm looking for a combination of quality attentuation and home recording, and both of these units seem to be great value for the money at their respective price points, but I'm having a very hard time choosing between them.

One way I'd like to try using them (if it makes any sense to do so; I'm a total noob at home recording setups), would be to disconnect the speaker cab from my amp head, play the amp head directly into one of these 2 units, into my laptop to take advantage of the cab sims and other DAW virtual goodies, and out through some type of smaller stereo speaker that I assume would be output from my laptop. The idea here is I would be able to record with a DAW software like Reaper or something, and still have an ultra quiet output in the room.

My main questions are:

1. Is this kind of setup possible, realistic, or just plain stupiud?

2. If possible, would one of these units work better for that kind of setup than the other?

3. Is either of them a good enough attentuator to just play through my actual 2x12 speaker cab and get decent low volume tones? (I already tried a JHS Little Black Amp Box in the effects loop and don't love it)
To be clear, neither of these units are attenuators - they are load boxes. That being said, what you are describing is the job for a load box.

"1. Is this kind of setup possible, realistic, or just plain stupiud?" - it is possible, but you are missing one key piece of gear which is an audio interface between your instruments and the computer. eg. Focusrite Scarlett or something similar.

"2. If possible, would one of these units work better for that kind of setup than the other?" - Both units would do the job just as well, although if you have a valuable vintage amp, I would use the Suhr unit (and I have 2 Suhr Reactive Loads) because John's design for the load curve more closely resembles an actual speaker. (ie. it's better for the amp). This is only relevant if you plan on cranking the amp balls out all the time - which most people don't do.

"3. Is either of them a good enough attentuator to just play through my actual 2x12 speaker cab and get decent low volume tones? (I already tried a JHS Little Black Amp Box in the effects loop and don't love it)" - you have identified the wrong pieces of gear for this type of use - neither of these units are attenuators. If you want an attenuator, I would go for a Fryette Power Station. The Power Station is technically a load box and re-amplifier, so you can use it as a traditional attenuator, but it does the job better.

edit: my bad - apparently the Two Notes Captor X is designed to function as an attenuator as well - however the Fryette Power Station is a far superior unit for attenuation. That being said - you are never going to get perfectly pleasing "bedroom volume" using this method - you are better off going through your computer and a good set of studio headphones.
 
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THAWK819

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To be clear, neither of these units are attenuators - they are load boxes. That being said, what you are describing is the job for a load box.

"1. Is this kind of setup possible, realistic, or just plain stupiud?" - it is possible, but you are missing one key piece of gear which is an audio interface between your instruments and the computer. eg. Focusrite Scarlett or something similar.

"2. If possible, would one of these units work better for that kind of setup than the other?" - Both units would do the job just as well, although if you have a valuable vintage amp, I would use the Suhr unit (and I have 2 Suhr Reactive Loads) because John's design for the load curve more closely resembles an actual speaker. (ie. it's better for the amp). This is only relevant if you plan on cranking the amp balls out all the time - which most people don't do.

"3. Is either of them a good enough attentuator to just play through my actual 2x12 speaker cab and get decent low volume tones? (I already tried a JHS Little Black Amp Box in the effects loop and don't love it)" - you have identified the wrong pieces of gear for this type of use - neither of these units are attenuators. If you want an attenuator, I would go for a Fryette Power Station. The Power Station is technically a load box and re-amplifier, so you can use it as a traditional attenuator, but it does the job better.

edit: my bad - apparently the Two Notes Captor X is designed to function as an attenuator as well - however the Fryette Power Station is a far superior unit for attenuation. That being said - you are never going to get perfectly pleasing "bedroom volume" using this method - you are better off going through your computer and a good set of studio headphones.

Thank you for the very thorough answers; I appreciate it. I did not realize I would also need a Focusrite Scarlet or equivalent piece of gear. I thought the Captor X filled that role and would go directly into the PC/DAW. Another bit of expense I suppose I have to account for in planning this.
 

redking

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Thank you for the very thorough answers; I appreciate it. I did not realize I would also need a Focusrite Scarlet or equivalent piece of gear. I thought the Captor X filled that role and would go directly into the PC/DAW. Another bit of expense I suppose I have to account for in planning this.
Plus decent quality studio headphones or studio monitors (which would also connect to your interface).
 

THAWK819

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Plus decent quality studio headphones or studio monitors (which would also connect to your interface).
So alternatively… my amp has a DI line out and internal load sink (Friedman JJ Jr) that could go direct to a recording interface like a focusrite, which would plug into my PC/DAW. Could I just plug a good set of studio headphones or a speaker into the PC and hear what I’m playing with whatever effects the DAW is adding? All I’d be sacrificing is the cab sim and in room attenuation of the Captor X.

I’m guessing most DAW have cab sim ability themselves anyway.
 

SWeAT hOg

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So alternatively… my amp has a DI line out and internal load sink (Friedman JJ Jr) that could go direct to a recording interface like a focusrite, which would plug into my PC/DAW. Could I just plug a good set of studio headphones or a speaker into the PC and hear what I’m playing with whatever effects the DAW is adding? All I’d be sacrificing is the cab sim and in room attenuation of the Captor X.

I’m guessing most DAW have cab sim ability themselves anyway.
All you need is an interface. Lots of decent ones out there, for reasonable prices. I bought a like new Yamaha AG-03, and it works like a charm for $70.
 

tzd

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So alternatively… my amp has a DI line out and internal load sink (Friedman JJ Jr) that could go direct to a recording interface like a focusrite, which would plug into my PC/DAW. Could I just plug a good set of studio headphones or a speaker into the PC and hear what I’m playing with whatever effects the DAW is adding? All I’d be sacrificing is the cab sim and in room attenuation of the Captor X.

I’m guessing most DAW have cab sim ability themselves anyway.

The JJ Junior features and internal load and cab-simulated XLR output. Comparing this analog circuit to some of the most intricate computer-based IRs, Dave achieved a direct output you can proudly send to front of house or use in the studio. The JJ Junior also allows you to play "silently," meaning you can safely play the amp WITHOUT having a speaker cabinet connected. The XLR output includes a ground-lift, level, and center/edge of speaker cone simulation switches.

The XLR out already has cab simulation, you don't need to add another cab sim. So you just need to feed it into the laptop through an USB audio interface.
 

redking

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So alternatively… my amp has a DI line out and internal load sink (Friedman JJ Jr) that could go direct to a recording interface like a focusrite, which would plug into my PC/DAW. Could I just plug a good set of studio headphones or a speaker into the PC and hear what I’m playing with whatever effects the DAW is adding? All I’d be sacrificing is the cab sim and in room attenuation of the Captor X.

I’m guessing most DAW have cab sim ability themselves anyway.
Just looking at the JJ Jr. specs, the line out is described as "XLR Cab Simulated output with Ground Lift, Axis and Level switches. You can record without having your speaker connected" So I think you can get away with the following:

Guitar > JJ Jr. > line out > "focusrite" or similar interface > USB to computer / DAW

then, in your DAW, I don't think you need to host an Impulse Response in the track where you bring in the signal because it is called "cab simulated" so there is something doing that bit in the amp itself.

You would plug your studio headphones into the focusrite interface, because this will become your computer's new "audio in / audio out" hub once you have it connected to your computer. The interface is basically a significantly higher quality sound card for your computer, and you would want to use this for your audio out as well.

It's worth a try to see if you like this particular line out / cab sim. If you were to use a load box to get your DI signal and then host a guitar speaker impulse response in your DAW, you get to choose the type of speaker you want it to sound like, whereas if you use the Friedman line out, Dave Friedman has made that choice for you. If you like it - then great, mission accomplished. If you want something different or if you like tweaking then you may want to choose to have more control.
 
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THAWK819

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Just looking at the JJ Jr. specs, the line out is described as "XLR Cab Simulated output with Ground Lift, Axis and Level switches. You can record without having your speaker connected" So I think you can get away with the following:

Guitar > JJ Jr. > line out > "focusrite" or similar interface > USB to computer / DAW

then, in your DAW, I don't think you need to host an Impulse Response in the track where you bring in the signal because it is called "cab simulated" so there is something doing that bit in the amp itself.

You would plug your studio headphones into the focusrite interface, because this will become your computer's new "audio in / audio out" hub once you have it connected to your computer. The interface is basically a significantly higher quality sound card for your computer, and you would want to use this for your audio out as well.

It's worth a try to see if you like this particular line out / cab sim. If you were to use a load box to get your DI signal and then host a guitar speaker impulse response in your DAW, you get to choose the type of speaker you want it to sound like, whereas if you use the Friedman line out, Dave Friedman has made that choice for you. If you like it - then great, mission accomplished. If you want something different or if you like tweaking then you may want to choose to have more control.

Super helpful; thank you. Typical me to go charging off researching new gear to buy rather than assess the full capabilities of the gear I already have. Sounds like I could start experimenting for the cost of a Focusrite and a few cables alone.
 

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