Input Levels and Amps Headroom variation

Hello Everyone, I just got my new QC and still trying to figure it out how it works, it’s my first ever Neural DSP product.

I wanted to test how the Super Reverb 65’ emulation compares to the real thing (I have the physical amp), so I created a block with SPR Vibrato and a 4x10 Bassman Cab (closest I could get), I matched the settings with what I use on my amp, plugged in my ES335, and right away I noticed that the amp started to distort pretty early, even with volume at 2, (almost no headroom at all), with the physical amp I play at home with the volume at 4 and is pretty much a clean sound.

This didn’t make any sense to me, so I figured it had to be an user error, I read the forum intensively and I came across a post about Input levels, I checked my input level and it was 0.0db, I brought it down to -10db and then the QC amp started to behave like my physical one.

Is that the only way?, am I missing something?, do you also bring down your input levels down to get a more real headroom?, Is it due to the Humbuckers coming in too hot? or is it standard procedure?

P.S: I would like to get a neural capture of my amp for an A/B comparison but unfortunately SR are 2ohms so I don’t have a load box that can handle it ( I have a torpedo Captor x 8ohm), so no D.I output is possible, is there any other way to get a neural capture from a Tube Super Reverb?

Thanks a lot !

I see the same behaviour with my humbuckers, the Quad Cortex Amp models (or captures) are usually much “hotter” than the original amp.

I think you have three options to adjust to your guitar output:

  1. Input level (as you did)
  2. Gain block in the preset
  3. Gain control in the amp model or capture

I usually use a gain block as the first block in the preset grid to reduce the gain, at least in front of some amp models or amp captures.
The reason I take this solution is that I feel I need to reduce more for some amp models / captures and less for others. So this was the most flexible solution for me.
But I think all three solutions give similar results.


Hi @marcoszd and welcome to the community! I would try adjusting the impedance levels, they default at 1M which may be too hot for your setup. Generally, you will start to lose a bit of high end the lower you adjust but it may be necessary to tame your setup the way you want.

re: capturing your amp. You can do this with a speaker level DI box by plugging it into cab extension / between the amp and cab. Doing it this way you are still driving the actual speaker, so there is no need to load balance / attenuate. You can think of it like inserting a tiny tap into a large pipe to access the flow without affecting it.

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@danimaetrix is right. If you could get a DI box that has the amp or speaker setting, you could come out of your amp with a speaker cable, into the DI, then out of the through output of the DI with a speaker cable to another cab, or just to the speakers in your amp right now. Then use the xlr output of the DI to do the capture.

Check out the Torpedo Captor X user manual. You can achieve a capture like others have mentioned as long as you have you cab hooked up and the attenuator switch off (full volume). On this setting the Captor is not functioning as a load box.

Then you can set your XLR output (either one) to DI (no cab) or use a cab sim, all via the Torpedo app.

So it’s completely safe as long as I don’t use the built in attenuator, but the cabinet needs to be connected, no possibility of a silent capture?, Should I turn the reverb off while capturing the amp or it doesn’t matter?

Thanks for all the replies and Useful tips BTW!!, Glad I joined this forum!

Not sure on the official advice, but I would turn the reverb off.

I would disable any time -based FXs as they won’t be captured and may impact the capture process negatively. It won’t hurt anything leaving FX enabled but your capture quality may suffer. In any regards, time-based FX are ignored, also amp noise, hum, etc. is ignored as well.

So interesting, I noticed the same thing when trying out the QC with my Tele and some clean amp models vs my EBMM JP6. Adjusting the input level (didn’t think about using a separate gain block) gave me some pretty varied tones, which is pretty cool. Like any piece of gear, specifically studio gear, gain staging is important! But you don’t really have to worry about it too much with real amps so it’s a small adjustment to make in the digital realm.

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Actually I figured out what makes the difference. When using the A/B preset you have to lower the send1 output level -6db to make it the same as the guitar. I tried plugging into the amp and then into the QC and it’s no difference.