B3 comparison

One more B3 thread :wink:

I stumbled through some comparisons and threads here, watched some interesting YT videos. There are so many good B3 clones out these days. I think soundwise they all have there pro’s and con’s - in the end it’s mainly a question of taste and what you want to use it for. For me it’s live music in a band context.

I currently use the Arturia B3 V2 and checked a demo of the VB3-II. I also think about testing the Blue3. From my feeling and first impressions these are my 3 personal favourites. The IK B3-X is also interesting, but I think slightly too pricey :grimacing:

I wonder, if there are some technical constrains or limitations you might have observed with your personal B3 clones?

Did you guys here see any strange behaviour etc. with these? High mem usage, high CPU, limited tweaking of parameters etc.?

Curious about your experiences!

BBB

I think the right plugin depends on your needs, also because the leslie simulations in the plugins have different behavious in distortion, different main sound and other things. You should try the demos first and see which is the best for you.
The following plugins I have bought and tested in GP OSX and the results for me are:

Arturia B-3 V2
Main sound is fine for me. Rock stable. Low cpu. Pretty much memory usage. Not enough parameters to get the right sound for me. Leslie overdrive not creamy enough.

GSi VB3-II
Main sound is better than Arturia with more mids in. Crashes GP if I try to change any parameters. Contacted support nov. 2020, but no reply until now. Low cpu. Low memory usage. Much parameters to tweak the sound. Leslie overdrive is ok.

GG Audio Blue3
Very detailed sound and very much tweakable, but not as present as GSi. Rock stable. Low cpu. Low memory usage. Extremly much parameters to tweak the sound. Equalizer built in! Leslie overdrive very creamy and sounds to me like the real thing.

Regards from germany

I have V Collection 7 but have not checked B3 V2 out in a while. I don’t find it at all inspring. Perhaps it has been addressed but there were a few absolutely unaccpetable shortcomings to me. One of which that I remember is that whatever overdrive you dial in is just there, same amount no matter how soft or loud you’re at with expression pedal or how many notes you are playing.

If I can find it someone did a fantastic audio comparisons of all the major clonewheels and VSTs, maybe it was on this forum. He didn’t reveal what was what till the end. The only one I knew aboslutely for sure was Blue 3. It has a so slight synthy sound to me which I have to say is somewhat agreeable, but still synthy. Almost in a leakge kind of sound sort of way so its ok. But still 100% obvious and apparant to me.

At this point,in software, the IK Leslie still sounds the best to me. So B3X or using IK Leslie with any of the other software gives best results, but as you say pricey.

I had trouble with B3X on my laptop and couldn’t really use it, but it is pretty old laptop. At same time I couod use IK Leslie though. I’m actually still using VB3 I. I didn’t upgrqade because I really did not like the fast leslie (Guido gave me some tips to tamp it down, but it still didn;t do the trick for me) I would like to geti IK Leslie but it seems real expesnive for a rather limited use for me. So I have just been kind of wainig it out for a bit.

But I would very stronlgy recommend Blue, B5 B3X VB3II over Arturia B3 V2

Still haven’t figured out where that audio comaparison was, but came accross this and it’s just as good and done fairly recently. The accompanying YT video is fantastic, with comparisons both solo and in a mix. I found every time I heard Blue 3 it caught my ear and I liked it. Everthing else varied a bit…, for instance in Tom Petty Refugee sample I actually liked Arturia over B3X. Didn’t like B3X at all in that. VB3II also was real consistent ear catcher (except that fast Leslie!).

I didn’t pay much attention to Logic cause I can’t use it.And I know there is all sorts of additional tweaking that can be done and different usage etc etc. But at this point I would go with Blue 3 for sure. I would also be tempted with VB3II and IK Leslie except for expense. I demoed them together whren VB3II first came out and it was fantastic. But so were all of them through IK Leslie. Adam Monroe Music - Best B3 Organ VST 2021

No. I’ve been using Blue3 for more than two years now (after using VB3 for many years) and enjoy it every time I play it. For me, it’s closest to playing a real B3. Low CPU usage, very stable, great sound and good control over parameter. Low memory usage is obvious since it’s not a sample instrument.

I don’t use these heavily overdriven sounds because I mostly play jazz, pop, funk, fusion. But I really like the sound with some slight drive.

Disclaimer: I made some of their audio demos. But I didn’t get money for that and also bought the first version of Blue3.

I tried Arturia B3 V2 but didn’t like it at all.

3 Likes

Great input from all of you so far!

@Stoffel The overdrive of the Arturia B3 V2 is one of the lowlights in my opinion, it doesn’t really get better with the additional amps in the FX section.
I also think that the VB3-II bites more. I like the basic sound. However I will now have an eye on stability when controlling parameters which I did not so far…

@LilyM the Adam Monroe Video is great, this was one I was talking about in my initial post :wink:

@jazzundso sounds like I have to test the Blue3 next :slight_smile:

Overall very positive feedback regarding the Blue3!

Thank U all!

BBB

I think all of them except maybe B5 have demos. Even though there are limitations I was able to try them all satisfactorily with my band during a sound check. That’s of course the real test,

I updated my V Collection and tried B3 V2 again and while it is much improved, I still don’t think overall it hangs with the big boys… And while they did fix the overdrive to now properly being driven by how many keys are pressed, the expression pedal still works like an overall linear volume pedal (that doesn’t go to 0, got that right anyway) rather than an expression pedal… so whatever overdrive you have dialed in is there in the same amount regardless of where you are with the pedal. Ridiculous.

I guess I did not listen to that shootout to the end. And actually Blue 3 sounds not too good on Whiter Shade of Pale, fast Leslie. First mix where i thought B5 really shined. But I am remembering more clearly now my own shootouts w/ VB3II, B5, B3X and Blue and in the end while there were things I liked and diliked about each, none of the differences between them made anywhere near as much impact as running them through Amplitube Leslie. I just checked and Amplitube Leslie is on sale for $70 and I’m real tempted, now you got me thinking about this again

Unfortunately, that’s one I really would like to test… :confused:

The T-Racks version is the standalone version. It is really nice and you can use it with any other B3 plugin.

Take this

yes, read this thread before opening mine - this is some kind of follow up after 2 yrs :wink:

As outlined in the thread you linked, there’s a lot about personal taste and feelings, but also some common impressions. I’m absolutely with you, that you can tweak most plugins and use it in your personal context.

I’m currently more interested in the technical constraints/limitations to take care about :wink:

I own or have demoed most all of the B3 plug-ins mentioned. My favorite is still Acoustic Samples B5 v2 or v3, because it sounds the most like my old 1966 B3 with a filter capacitor kit retrofit. The IK Multimedia B3X sounds the most like a real Classic B3 to my ears. The IK Amplitude Leslie sounds the most real to me, while B5 is a close second. Still, Blue 3 has some presets that are very authentic. I use it on Gimme Some Lovin’.

Yeah! I’d really like to get my hands on that again. It sure all just comes down to your own usage. You see time and again reviews of B5 (even positive ones) about it being a bit on the mellow side, better for jazz etc. On the video shootout… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_W_SEyKmGsE&t=711s you can defnitely hear that. However right at 17:00, when B5 ramps down in Whiter Shade of Pale it is absolute Heaven, that no other sample comes close to in any of the rest of the video (while not quite screaming like you might like right before that).

And then you have the post with the guy who loved B4II, which was unusable to me (and remarked on widely at the time) because the overdrive was a bizarre crackly sound. But I suppose if you’re not really using overdrive it was great.

T-Racks is not on sale at the moment, but you are right,proably a better way to go…

I see noone mentions it - but there are two more instruments you can take in count - especially if you are tight with CPU load. Soundwise - those are behind B5…B3X…Blue3… Not as an issue if you are not “purist” or you need that tonwheels as a accompaniment. But CPU wise those are winners by far: AIR DB3 (although you’ll need some 'verb in FX9), and Model C in Halion.

I noticed that the Leslie plugin or inbuilt Leslie is the most important part of the Hammond sound.
All other things like crosstalk, distortion, vibrato or chorus etc, is fine on all known VST.
And many Leslie emulations sound good in low speed, with high speed you will notice only a few sound really excellent.

But that is like allways only a matter of personal taste.

And at the end when you play in a band, the organ has to be heard without the need to make it super loud :wink:

2 Likes

Just some short feedback from my evaluation of the Blue3 and VB3-II demos in comparison to the Arturia B3 V2:

The Blue3 is rock solid. But for playing rock I don’t like the drive. From the basic character and the sound of the drive I tend towards the VB3-II (I still have some impressions of the past from the Mojo61 in mind…). But I also had some minor issues with the VB3-II: I had one session where the rotary switch showed up with a weird toggling behaviour, and some graphical errors below the preset buttons. But I still like it :slight_smile: No crashes like @Stoffel reported. Drawbars, drive, rotary control etc. work as expected. Presets changes reflect to the widget (where I have problems with the Arturia…).

Tomorrow I have the first rehearsal with my complete band after months - I hope we have some time left to check this.

Unfortunalty both demos have very short intervals with their sound interruptions. I hope this is not to annoying for my mates…

Still an open decision :innocent:

BBB

Regarding the Blue3 drive, I feel the same.

But as Spin is separetely available you could insert a drive/distortion plugin after Blue3 and before Spin.
A wonderful effect is from SoundToys: Devil-Loc Deluxe

Or the free from Softube: Saturation Knob

As final thougth: I am using IK Multimedia Hammond and the Leslie I like most of all VST I know.
Is a little bit CPU intensive.

1 Like

+1 here for VB3-II crashing GP. It took me several months to find out what caused GP crashing daily. Last week I uninstalled VB3-II and replaced it by Hanon B70 and had no crashes since.

I monitored my laptop with latencymon, and with VB3-II installed GP generates thousands of hard page faults. After uninstalling VB3-II the hard page faults were reduced to only a couple, which makes me quiet sure that VB3-II is the cause of the trouble.

Too bad, because I do like the sound of VB3-II. For a free plugin (and it comes with GP4) Hanon B70 is very nice though.

Did you contact the developer of VB3-II?

I did last week, no response yet. (I send them the crash report extract as well, as GP support suggested)

As maybe I have a better contact :wink:
Please send me the crash report.

Thx