You can now digitally simulate an entire setup with just your laptop

Guitar Rig is a multi-effects and amp simulator that allows you to get amazing effects and tones on your guitar with the use of a digital interface, it can operate as an independent application or as a plug-in for other software such as Studio One.

With over 1,000 presets to choose from, you can simply load one up and start jamming. If you want to customize the presets this is easily achieved by messing with them digitally through Guitar Rig 6’s now improved user interface (but more on that later).

Conversely, you can create your own presets from scratch which is one of the best features of this digital software that sets it apart from physical setups. However, other digital amp and effects simulators can also achieve this, so this is where a comparison must be made.

Although, perhaps what sets Guitar Rig apart from its competitors is the quality of their effects. Again, while other software does also have this, Guitar Rig’s effects quality is pristine and crisp and has a sound quality far above its price point.

Not only does this mean you can have a super professional and sonic, yet simple, reverb effect, you can also customize this wildly by routing them to different frequencies, changing dials and knobs, and stacking it with other effects.

Essentially you can have anything from a simple distortion effect to some seriously unique and strange sounding guitar effects that have taken days of customizing.

Guitar Rig

One thing they changed was the user interface, which had become clunky and aged – having been unchanged since 2011, it certainly benefited from a revamp.

The changes seem to be somewhat based on Native Instrument’s Maschine platform which has a really fun and intuitive user interface that encourages exploration of features and simple navigation. Guitar Rig 6 is now similar, it enables you to mess around with presets more easily and encourages this sort of experimentation rather than making it troublesome with a clunky layout.

In this fashion, you will definitely find you get more out of Guitar Rig 6 than its previous update through this simple change.

Another user interface change is that you can now resize your workshop window to your own specifications, like a browser window. While this sounds trivial it’s actually really helpful and exposes some issues with the old software.

Being able to change your window size like this means you can see your whole digital rack without having to scroll. Moreover, this same change means that when you load Guitar Rig within a DAW it dynamically resizes itself to best fit the software visually, which makes it really easy and practical to use within a DAW.

While these changes seem really small, they actually expose a lot of issues within the previous version that many hadn’t really noticed. Sometimes these small changes can really unearth flaws in a system.

Guitar Rig

And there’s a whole host of new toys to play around with in addition to the amps that were already there from previous versions.

‘Dirt’ and ‘Bite’ are two effects that add a lot of texture to a guitar sound and simply add to the wide range of presets a guitarist can customize and operate within Guitar Rig. In addition to this, Native Instruments have incorporated studio processors that were previously exclusive to their ‘Komplete’ production software.

These processors (Komplete’s VC 160, VC 2A, and VC 76) are ideal for compression and allow you to achieve dynamic and musical smoothing of levels, or the opposite if you please. This is just to name a few, native Instruments have introduced a whole host of production tools that make your guitar effects way more accurate, dynamic and professional.

In essence, with the update to Guitar Rig, this newest update has provided you with thousands of new tools to shape and color your guitar sounds with limitless possibilities. Forget a new toolbox, Native Instruments have provided a whole shed of tools to work with.

Guitar Rig

Guitar Rig was already a pretty good software, and Native Instruments were right to tweak it rather than overhaul it.

It’s a great demonstration of a useful software update – they haven’t completely changed the software’s operation, simply, they changed small things like the user interface to expose multiple flaws in their older systems.

Beyond simply improving on what they already had, Native Instruments have added a whole host of practically useful features you will seriously appreciate. The most impressive addition is the ICM approach to machine learning which is seriously progressive to use AI tech in music software.

It only costs a fraction of what it would cost to recreate Guitar Rig’s capabilities with actual software. I can’t encourage you to upgrade, or simply invest in, Guitar Rig more!