What is an IR and how do I make it work with Cubase

I’ve seen a lot of free guitar amp tone setup guides on YT use IR’s, especially the one mentioned below, but I don’t entirely understand what they do. I figured I’d try to download one, the one called “The best IR in the world” or something like that, but I don’t really get where I am supposed to put it to make it work with Cubase. It didn’t come with any DLL files, or VST3 files. It just came with an “IR file”, a “SYX” file, and a WAV file. I know what a WAV file is but honestly have no idea about the other two. Any info would be appriceiated. :slight_smile:

IR stands for Impulse Response. They’re most commonly used to capture how speakers or a room respond to sound. The .syx and .ir files are for hardware. You can ignore them.

The .wav file can be imported into Cubase Pro’s REVerence convolution reverb. If you don’t have Cubase Pro, you can use some other IR loader plugin.

Add the VST Amp Rack to your guitar track, go to the Cabinets tab and select “No Cabinet”. Now add REVerence, and import the .wav file you downloaded.


You can see how much the IR affects the sound by bypassing your IR loader/REVerence. Try it with a high gain amp simulation like the VST Amp Rack’s Plexi Lead or Diamond amps.

Okay thanks for the info.
So it’s like a filter the amp signal goes through to shape the sound colour?

Also, I have Cubase Artist 9.5. Do you know of any good free IR loader plugins?
As for the IR loader plugins, would they be DLL or VST3 files, or something else? Asking because if it’s something else, then I don’t know how to install it.

It is a recording of the cabinet using a short burst of white noise. That recording is then used, like you said, as a “filter” to give the same sound as the cabinet that was captured.
There are tons of articles and videos on the internet describing the process. You can also make your own if you have the tools.

A quick google gave me this:

I have not personally tried any of the listed plugins.

Yes, you would need a VST plugin to run it in Cubase. VST2 plugins come as .dll files whereas VST3 plugins have a .VST3 file extention.

Yes, you would need a VST plugin to run it in Cubase. VST2 plugins come as .dll files whereas VST3 plugins have a .VST3 file extention.

Wait VST2 comes as DLL? I tried downloading an amp sim a couple days ago, and I ended up with a VST2 file that I had no idea what to do with, and after looking it up the general gist was that unless I have cubase 12 Pro I can’t use them.

Well, typically a plugin will come with an executable installer that will place the .dll file in a directory for you (default VST2 directory on a windows machine is C:\Program Files\Common Files\VST2).

What amp sim was it?
I don’t think I have ever encountered a file with the extension VST2.
VST2 technology was introduced by Steinberg in 1999 and has been supported in every Cubase version since.

Hi, I don’t remember 100% but I THINK it was the ignite emissary free plugin I couldn’t get to work. It’s in my recycle bin so it’s proly there for a reason.

If not that, then I’m pretty sure it was something from the description of this video: FREE Metal Guitar Tone 2020 - This is too good to be free. - YouTube

Edit: Okay I think I remember what happened, if I recall correctly, when trying to install ignite emissary, the default location was set to an empty folder called “VST2”, so I googled VST2 and all results I found said that VST2 is no longer supported except for Cubase 12 Pro or something.