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AmpliTube iRig (photos)

Take a closer look at the AmpliTube iRig, a virtual guitar amp solution from IK Multimedia that combines a free iPhone app with a hardware accessory for connecting your guitar to any iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad.

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Donald_Bell.jpg

Donald Bell

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The AmpliTube iRig is a $39 headphone port adapter that works with the Apple iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. In combination with a free iRig app, the system lets you connect an electric guitar or bass and use the app to emulate the sound of a variety of amplifiers and effects.
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The visually striking iRig app recreates the look, as well as the sound, of real guitar amps. Using the touch-screen interface of your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad, you can adjust settings with virtual knobs and even change details such as the type of speaker cabinet or virtual microphone used to create the sound.
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The iRig headphone adapter ($39) lets you plug both your headphones and an instrument cable into the headphone port on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad. The instrument cable connection acts as an input, while your headphones are used to monitor the sound of your guitar.
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The AmpliTube iRig app also includes a number of standard effects, such as delay, overdrive, flanger, fuzz, chorus, and more. Just like the real thing, these virtual stompboxes have adjustable settings and can be quickly switched on and off.
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The Tools section of the iRig app includes a tuner and metronome. An audio demo section near the bottom lets you run preset guitar loops through the amps and effects, even when no guitar is connected.
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Amp and effect settings can be saved and recalled using a grid of custom presets. Users are given up to 36 presets, spanning across three pages. The presets are useful, however, we wish you could name presets with custom labels.
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The iRig's Setup screen lets you adjust processing latency, feedback cancellation, and auto-sleep modes.
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iRig's integrated store lets users add additional effects, for a price.
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If you'd like to play guitar along with your favorite songs, you can create a list of your own tunes and play them within the iRig app.
Transferring songs into the app requires an awkward over-the-air pairing between the device and your computer's Web browser, but it works.
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The iRig headphone jack adapter isn't much to look at, but it gets the job done. The space between the hardwired headphone cable and the headphone input doesn't allow much room for connecting bulky headphone or line output cables.

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