The best cab simulator pedal is designed to deliver the fantastic sound of a guitar cab without the need for a real guitar or cumbersome amp setup. Here are some of the best cabinet simulator pedals that you can choose from.
Currently, there is a myriad of ways that guitar players can achieve outstanding tones. One of your options is getting an excellent cab simulator. Cab simulator pedals are uniquely made to emulate the great sounds that guitar cabs offer. On top of that, they can easily be mounted onto pedalboards as they are typically compact and lightweight.
As such, cabinet simulator pedals eliminate the need for guitar cabs while allowing you to plug into PA systems for live performances. They are also superb options if you’re looking to make your stage a lot quieter and can be plugged directly into audio interfaces and mixing desks for direct recording. This makes them must-have tools for any studio.
To help you find the right one for you, here are some of the best cabinet simulator pedals that are worth considering.
best cabinet simulator pedal
Digitech Dual Speaker Cabinet Emulator Pedal (CabDryVR-U)
First on our list is one of the best cabinet simulator pedals by Digitech. Digitech CabDryVR Dual Cabinet Simulator Pedal is a standalone guitar cabinet simulator designed to occupy a small space of your pedalboard, and it is pretty easy to use.
One great feature of this kit is the breathtaking capabilities that come in handy when recording, playing direct, or even when you want to blend different cabinet sounds to get a distinct setup. This digital product runs impulse response files with a relatively low latency drawing approximately 200mA and requires a wall adapter or power supply to operate instead of a battery.
This CabDryVR sim pedal gives you access to 14 cabs, including seven distinct guitar cabs as well as seven bass cabs. It boasts dual inputs and outputs that are labeled “A” and “B” to ensure you can perform different activities using the setup. For example, you can run the mono or the standard instrument signal and use a cabinet as the mono output. Or, you can split the mono signal into two different channels so you can send the signal via different or the same cab simulators to different speakers.
It also allows you to set “A” and “B” to cab sim and Dry, respectively, and you can send both the dry and cab sim into a guitar amp or DAW to play. Additionally, you can even run two individual signals through the input or output, which allows you to work with two different instruments. This is only an icing on the cake as it has so many impressive capabilities that will blow your mind away.
Besides that, it has a 3-color LED on the pedal designed to indicate whether it is set for bass or guitar. For example, if you clip a strong signal to the input, it flashes red. It is important to note that when recording use a separate control level instead of just preamping the pedal. Also, you don’t have to change the gain structure to reduce the output or the volume.
Overall, the Cab DryVR is an excellent cab simulator pedal ideal for home guitarists and gigging musicians. If you are a home guitarist, it gives you the flexibility to record or play into a mixer without using an amp. On the other hand, if you are a gigging musician, you can use it to send your pedalboard seamlessly to a club PA or as a backup option.
Two Notes Torpedo CAB Meters Speaker Simulator Pedal
Coming second on our list, the Torpedo CAB simulator is a must-have for any guitar player studio as it offers serious AMP power and an intuitive GUI interface.
To begin with, the Two Notes CAB boasts dual inputs and outputs that allow you to connect your favorite amp to the CAB M input and the CAB’s speaker output to your speaker for a flexible DI. This will enable you to connect to a PA or audio interface, eliminating the hassle of cables and microphones.
It also comes equipped with Torpedo’s technology with impulse response based emulations that include 32 guitar as well as bass cabinets, eight microphones, and eight rooms. There is also power amp emulation that you can configure to your liking.
It offers support for third-party IRs, allowing you to create your own emulations from downloaded IRs using the Torpedo Remote software or from the provided 250 virtual cabinets. Through the Torpedo Capture software, you can seamlessly capture your cabinet plus microphone setup and add its sound signature.
On top of that, this cabinet simulator pedal also delivers studio-grade effects that include a noise gate for cleaning up your signal, an enhancer for boosted tone thickness, and brilliance. It additionally provides reverb for adding atmosphere and dimension, and 5-band semi-parametric EQ that lets you sculpt your tone.
Overall, the Torpedo CAB M+ is one of the fantastic cabinet simulator pedals as it allows you to enjoy a complete guitar rig with only a pedalboard. The User Interface is pretty intuitive for convenient customization.
DA GCS-3 Cabinet Simulator
The GCS-3 is a compact, cabinet simulator that uses analog circuit design, making it a superb option for sound engineers and guitar players looking for superior analog solutions.
A notable element of the GCS-3 is that you don’t need power amps, microphones, or guitar cabinets. Instead, the GSC-3 can split the output signal from your guitar pedal preamp, board, or power amp and send it to both the guitar amplifier and the mixing console for your stage monitor, house sound systems, or powered full-range cabinet.
The GCS-3 also can replicate low-frequency resonance of a guitar cabinet, especially at high volumes, mostly in the sealed speaker cabinet setup. Moreover, you use it a live performance by merely sending a signal to the stage monitor for the guitar using the stack to eliminate combo. The monitor can easily produce the same feedback from the stack with more control.
Besides that, you can fix the GCS-3 between the recording or mixing system and your amplifier’s output instead of using the proximity mic mostly used as a guitar speaker cabinet. As such, you get rid of crosstalk and bleed-through from amps, among other instruments, especially in live performances.
MOOER Radar Guitar Speaker CAB Simulator
The MOOER Radar simulator hits the top scores when it comes to the best cabinet simulator pedal. It is a compact fully-fledged cab sim, which means that you can use it with your overdrive pedal as a guitar amp or a preamp. With the MOOER Radar simulator, you don’t have to carry the cumbersome amp head for your gigs.
This MOOER radar comes with 30 distinct speaker cab models you can choose from along with 11 mic models plus four power amp models. The 30 inbuilt cabinets are designed to cover almost every cabinet style. All these cabs come in handy when recording because they can have a massive impact on the tone, and having different tones can help produce a bigger and fuller sound.
When it comes to the 11 built-in mic models, the MOOER covers almost all the basics. It is also important to note that changing the microphone has the same effect on the tone, just like the speaker cabinet. The Radar allows you to use one at a time, and you can even adjust the distance from the cabinet and the cabinet edge.
The four power amp simulations come in handy when you want to preamp or run your pedals direct into the Radar. What’s more, they cover relatively every popular amp style, and you don’t have to worry that it will sound stale or dry. As a rule of thumb, the 6L6 covers big American-style, 6V6 is for small American-style, while EL84 and EL34 cover small British-style and big British-style, respectively.
Overall, the MOOER Radar is inarguably a workhorse of a cab sim pedal that’s easy to use with a wide array of effects. It is perfect for recording or practicing as well and will undoubtedly convert your pedalboard into a fully-fledged guitar rig.
AMT Electronics Chameleon Cab Speaker Cabinet Simulator Pedal
The Chameleon Cab is a one of a kind cabinet simulator pedal designed to simulate both thick and small cabinets. It is a compact pack with a big punch and a wide range of cabinet sizes, microphone positions, and speakers. It is pretty easy to use without complications and does not come with software, an LCD screen, or lots of presets for customization.
The CN-1 pedal features four knobs, which are quite enough to give you that excellent cab emulation including the size cab, magnet, position, and turn knobs. The size cab knob controls the entire speaker cabinet. The magnet knob is for controlling the cutoff frequency response of your speaker magnets. The positioning knob controls the movement of the microphone either to the center or far away from the center. And the turn knob is designed to emulate the rotational movement of the microphone.
With this AMT Chameleon cab sim pedal, you have a proper cabinet emulation that will allow you to record or preamp directly into your DAW or computer.
Hotone Binary Series IR Cab Impulse Response Cabinet Simulator Pedal
The Hotone Binary IR cab sim pedal takes the premium sound of impulse-response speaker to a whole new level in a compact and pedalboard-friendly design. The Binary IR comes with 100 cabinet models, eight power amp, and 11 studio microphone simulations. As such, you can use the X, Y, and Z knobs to emulate the virtual microphone placement.
Additionally, the amplifier simulator makes it possible to perform on a stage without the heavy and cumbersome traditional cabinet and amplifier setup. And more importantly, it works seamlessly with third-party IRs to ensure that you easily upload your cab sim with USB.
Besides that, this Hotone cab sim pedal is powered by Comprehensive Dynamic Circuit Modeling (CDCM), which dramatically helps process any incoming guitar signal automatically, which gives you an authentic vintage and modern playing experience at all times.
Also, the crisp OLED display is specially designed to deliver a clear, clean, and easy to read display when on stage, in different lighting situations, or the studio. The screen also helps you customize the settings to your liking, especially during time-critical sessions.
If you are not happy with your cabinet or you don’t have one, you can go for a cabinet simulator pedal that comes with dozens of cabinets to play around with. The MOOER Radar is the best cab sim pedal on our list whose capabilities are breathtaking. Although small in size, it offers you a massive array of presets, and you can use their software to customize the presets.
If you want a cabinet simulator pedal that gives you more functionality, DigiTech CabDryVR is at the top of the pack. It allows you to drop your tunes without retuning your guitar.
Overall, all the above pedals are commendable. Each is unique with a different case use, and they are certainly an excellent addition to any given setup.