Approximate reading time: 3 Minutes
The first effect pedals from IK Multimedia - Amplitube X-GEAR

The first effect pedals from IK Multimedia - Amplitube X-GEAR  ·  Source: IK Multimedia

Update: IK’s Amplitube X-GEAR pedals are shipping now from retailers, like our affiliate partner Thomann. Check out the links below for pricing.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

IK Multimedia has launched the first effect pedals range in its company history (apart from the Z-Tone Buffer/Booster). The AmpliTube X-GEAR pedals are all digital modelling effects that bring AmpliTube’s sounds directly to the stage and rehearsal room.

Amplitube X-GEAR

The big X teaser campaign turned out to be four separate stompboxes, not a floor pedal amp modeller and effects as many people had guessed.

These are individual effect pedals that all use the IK Multimedia Amplitube sound. The four pedals in the range are X-SpaceX-Time, X-Drive and X-Vibe, each based on the effects algorithms used in IK’s AmpliTube software.

Amplitube X-Gear

Amplitube X-GEAR

The Four X-GEAR Pedals

The four Amplitube X-GEAR models are:

  • X-Space (Reverb)
  • X-Time (Delay)
  • X-Vibe (modulation)
  • X-Drive (Overdrive/Distortion)

There is also housing in a suitable colour and the correspondingly adapted labelling and knob functions. I like that many of the functions can be adjusted directly on the pedal, without having to dive into the editor.

Each pedal features 16 effects with popular AmpliTube models, plus new reverb and delay algorithms. With the delay, these are e.g. B.: Model, Preset, Parameters, Time, Feedback, Filter, Mod and Mix. You also get a tap tempo and two other footswitches (A and B) for the effects on top. It is similar to the other pedals, with specific parameters that fit reverb, modulation or distortion.

However, the question arises: Why 4x the almost identical pedal, when the difference is purely digital, except for a potentially interchangeable front panel? Surely it can’t be because of the storage space.

Amplitube X-Gear in the studio

Amplitube X-GEAR in the studio

Connectivity

The new IK Multimedia AmpliTube X-GEAR pedals all have the same structure as well as the same connections. In addition to input and stereo-out (true or soft bypass), inputs for an expression pedal, MIDI and USB are alsoavailable. Everything is on it! The pedals can also be synchronized via MIDI.

The conversion is done with 24 bits at 192 kHz with a noise ratio of 123 dB. In addition, frequencies from 5 to 24000 Hz are recorded. The latency has not yet been mentioned, but I assume that it is below 5 ms.

Notepad on Windows and macOS

Each of the pedals includes a matching ‘virtual version’ for Mac/PC, along with a copy of AmpliTube 5 SE to use the virtual pedal in. The X-GEAR Preset Manager then lets you move presets between X-GEAR pedals and AmpliTube, and organise them on the hardware pedal. With up to 300 presets per pedal, you have plenty of space.

Price and market launch

The MSRP for each IK Multimedia AmpliTube X-GEAR effect pedal is 299 Euros. A bit more than the Positive Grids BIAS pedals, which is a similar concept. By the way, the pedals are built in Italy and not in China, so the pricing is for a European manufactured product. In that respect, I’d say it’s pretty competitive for today’s marketplace.

More Information on IK Multimedia

 

Amplitube X-Gear Demo Video

YouTube

By loading the video, you agree to YouTube’s privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

by Jef
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

2 responses to “IK ships AmpliTube X-GEAR, its first effect pedals”

  1. Ugo says:

    What a disappointment 🙁
    Who needs yet another bunch of stompboxes??? While they could put the whole Amplitube in the hardware box and be a very strong competitor to Kemper, Helix and others…
    And space is not the answer. They could easily fit the whole thing inside that box.

    • Scott says:

      Seriously. The last thing I want from IK is the effects. the amps and cabs are the whole point. Everyone makes effects pedals but IK are uniquely positioned to make an amazing all in one hardware system. Also looks like they were “inspired” by the designs of the newer strymon stuff (volante and night sky). I bet their argument would be that amplitube already exists in mobile form with the iOS version but that kind of stuff never feels road worthy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *