May 2, 2012 1:37 AM
I am sure I am not the only person who has become tired and exhausted after hours of tweaking on the HD500. I try to fine tune a patch to perfection and end up being hyper critical and not being happy with it. I try different amp models with different cabs and then I try tweaking the tone controls on the amp and then the deepe editing controls on the cab and then I add an EQ etc etc. Unfortunately I usually burn myself out and end up wondering if I will ever get the sound I want and I am so frustrated that I want to give up on the HD500/JTV technology completely.
There is no doubt that the HD500/JTV technology is excellent and many people have produced wonderful demo's and sound file that sound awesome - so it is just me and my lack of ability to tweak the guitar, amp, effect models just to the correct level to get great sounds with my gear. I have had a Variax for many years now and last year got a JTV59. I bought an X3L just a few months before they were discontinued amd then last year I also bought an HD500. So I am not a newcomer to Line6 or this technology - however - I am still finding tweaking a very time consuming and frustrating activity. It took me ages to get sounds I was happy with for my X3L and I had quite a few disappointing gigs before I found sounds that would fit with the band. I have had the HD500 for many months now but I still use the X3L for gigs because I am comfortable with my old patches and I have not yet been able to program suitable replacement patches on my HD500 that I would be confident with using at a live gig. I want to move to using the HD500 hence my recent frenzied tweaking activities to finally get it to the point that I could replace my X3L at live gigs - but once again I have hit tweaking fatigue and need to take a break from it before attempting any more.
I wondered how others cope with tweaking fatigue and whether they had any good tips and strategies to avoid it in the first place or to get over it more quickly. I also wondered whether other users had specific programming strategies that helped avoid this problem.
I use this programming strategy:
1) Start off with a blank patch and monitor on headphones
2) Select JTV guitar model or model/mag combo that I want to use
3) Select an amp model that is in the ball park of the sound I want
4) Add default reverb after the amp
5) Audition the sound
6) Try a different amp to see if I can get closer to sound I am looking for
7) Audition the sound
8) Try different cabs as necessary to see whether they get closer to sound I am looking for
9) Audition the sound
10) Add an effect model if necessary to get closer to sound I need
11) Audition sound
12) Tweak settings if necessary
13) Audition sound
14) Add EQ if necessary
15) Audition sound
16) Tweak some more
17) Now audition the sound with Powered PA cab
18) Tweak some more
19) Audition some more
20) Finally settle and save patch
I often try to do clean sounds first, and then overdriven sounds afterwards. I can often dial a pretty good sound in fairly quickly but I then have to ensure levels are OK to be able to swap from one to another mid-song and that often results in more tweaking as when I compare patches going from clean to overdrive they sound different to when I have played them stand alone. In fact sometimes patches can sound different to me from one day to the next, but I think that is a sign of tweaking fatigue where I have become hyper critical of each sound. I can also find that oer driven sounds that sounded nice and crisp when I was setting them up start to sound wooly and indistinct when I swap between patches - or cleans that sounded warm and mellow to start with become shrill and harsh.
Unfortunately, I do not have any magic solution to this but I was hoping other users would share their experiences and perhaps there may be some words of wisdom out there that will help habitual obsessive tweakers like myself avoid or cope with the fatigue and maybe help us quickly get to usuable sounds rather than wasting hours and hours auditioning and tweaking and just becoming exhausted and frustrated.
So please feel free to share your experiences/views/opinions.
Thanks very much in advance.