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Pod Hd500: Live Exibition Experience

pod hd through pa amplifier

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#1 Buckethead85

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 02:24 PM

Hi everybody, this is my first topic so be kind if i did a mistake for posting in this section! :D


I decided to open a new topic about how to connect the POD hd500 in live situation, because i want to tell my experience and because i want to have a clear point of view about everything.

I've read alot about connecting pod through a PA but still i've not figured out what's the best option.
In my live exibitions i connect the pod directly through the mixer and then to the speakers by using an XLR cable (mono, i don't use stereo effects for now) and choosing of course the output mode as STUDIO DIRECT.

Well, my crunch and lead tone are harsh, very digital,robotic, without the warmth that i heard from the headphones while i was creating the patches (and everybody say it is normal because every speaker has different frequency response etc...) but the question is:

Considering i cannot tweak my patches listening to the speakers because every concert we have a different service and also is not very comfortable, what is the best option to allow the same tone from different situation?

I've read on older posts that i should tweak tones listening from speakers monitor, and the sound would be the same as live?

If i buy a all tube amplifier, i could create at home the patches and then mic it everytime the same way and i would have the same tone i tweaked at home! What do you think? Should i buy an amp with FX loop in this case?

With my band we have MACKIE speakers and they sound ok with my patches ( even if they still lose some tone warmth) but i cannot tweak my tones bringing a speaker every time at my place!

Thank you for helping me and sorry for my english.

 


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#2 jws1982

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 07:33 PM

In best practice, a person should create their tones on the same equipment they use to monitor it live.  Since the 'feel' will change when pretty much any part of the system is changed, it's critical to keep the same setup from creation to use.  Let the front-of-house guys run it however they want (just like a mic'ed cabinet).

 

I play with a group sometimes that uses in-ear monitors.  So, all my patches for that group are made using my in-ears.  That way, they always sound the same to me, but the FOH mixer can tweak them to his liking.

 

Otherwise, I use a DT25 with my POD HD500.  IMO, the feel of having a tube amp (or super-powerful solid state amp) behind you is somewhat irreplaceable when playing live.  When I'm not using my in-ears, having my guitar sound just pumped through a house wedge doesn't cut it.  The DT25 gives me better feel and consistency in those situations.


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#3 cerara

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 08:15 PM

I also have a whole bank dedicated to our in ear practice rig and another bank for playing live through my tube amps.  i find the tube amp smooths out some of buzz fuzz in the overdrive patches.


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#4 Buckethead85

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 01:37 AM

Thank you for your answers!

I used to play live with a miced frontman 212r transistor amp (100 watt) and the pod xt live connected in front of it. So like you i think an amp is necessary, also i was thinking like you said that a tube amp would warm a bit the sound.
Do you recommend the 4 cable methods to connect the pod to the amp? I want to use the cab simulation, not only the pod as a stomp effect.
Thank you again


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#5 jstock

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 02:17 AM

All points made above but here is a re-iteration

 

1. If you want to go direct to the PA then set up your patches using full range monitors. This gives you a reference point. Then you need to stand in front of the PA in a decent size room and tweak until you get to a happy place. Playing direct to the PA may offer the most convience but it is also the most difficult to get right simply because you need to be stood in front of the PA in order to fix your patches Having played direct to the PA for many a year I tend to find you can get close to what you want but never exactly simply because of the difference in accoustics at different venues its much easier to adjust an amp on the fly than it is your patches on the HD. The other thing that I dislike is the disconnect you tend to have in comparison to having a real guitar amp sat behind you.

 

2. HD500 to DT is the best combination IMHO. You use L6 Link interface to connect which means you get full control over the topology of the amp as you change your patches.

 

3. HD500 to Tech 21 Power Engine is a cheaper alternative. No comparison to a real tube amp though.


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#6 Buckethead85

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 04:46 AM

Thank you jstock, but as i said, sometime i play throuhg different PA so i haven't the possibilty to tweak the patches in front of the PA.
I think i will mic the tube amp, at least i'm sure what come out from my amp ( when i create the patch at home ) it's almost the same sound in live situation (except the acoustic of course but mainly it's eq-ed correctly).

I will lose the stereo effect of the delays etc...but at least i got a decent sound, the last time through the PA was a terrible experience. The tone was so thin and digital that affected my playin, i was not comfortable at all.

 


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#7 jws1982

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Posted 22 May 2013 - 11:36 AM

Buckethead55, if you connect the POD to an amp, I would suggest never plugging into the front of it unless you have to.   Get a tube amp with a power amp in, or an FX return jack.   Or, just get a DT25/DT50.  I've tried the POD HD500 with a handful of different tube amps, and the DT series got the job done best as far as covering every type of guitar tone.  


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#8 Buckethead85

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 02:53 PM

Thank you very much! Yes i was thinking to buy a tube amp like the bugera v22 or v55. It has the fx send/return. The dt25 is too expensive at the moment :( , but if i had money i would buy it for sure. In your case when you play live in big open space do you mic the amp?
Do you think a 22 watt tube amp would be enough? I mean i can mic it but i'm afraid that a raise of volume would distort the clean sound of my clen tone preset. Thank you for your time :)
 


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#9 dmbjimi26

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 04:43 PM

First off let me say, "Yes, a  tube amp."

 

I assume you were using POD HD amp sims when running direct and getting that gritty and nasty tone that didn't sound at all like what you spent time tweaking in, right?  The problem was not the amp sims but the direct out to PA. Without an awesome sound engineer that cares what YOUR tone sounds like, it hopeless for that to sound too amazing.

 

I think the best solution for ultimate flexibility without buying a DT50, is using POD HD amp sims or amp pre sims with the 1/4" outputs hooked to the FX Return of your tube amp. Set the "AMP/LINE" switch to "LINE". Also, set the output mode to  COMBO PWR AMP. Now you can use the patches you had and tweak them to sound good with the power tubes of your amp.

 

You can play around with the full amp sims vs. the amp pre models, and see which sounds best for you. Also, you may or may not want to use the cab sims, since you'll have a real one.  But it does work when wanting to make your 1x12 or whatever sound more like a 4x12, or just plain different than it really is.

 

I've done the four cable method, actually 7 cable because I ran it stereo. I always ended up with noise issues one way or another.  So went back to POD amp sims to analog tube amp FX return. I can control my levels much easier in the POD than walking to my amp and taking my hands off my guitar to turn a knob.

 

I use a Bugera 22W for my second channel right now. My first channel is a Crate Vintage 50W.  So I Have EL34s on both power amps. So I can combine any of the POD HD amp pre models with my EL34s to make them sound Fenderish, Marshallish, Voxish, whatever. I can also choose to use the full amp sim (including power amp sim) when trying to make those EL34s sound different than they really are, KT66s , 6L6s, what have you. Kind of the same as the cab sims.

 

Always tweak your tones on what ever you'll be using them on (e.g. tube amp, headphones, PA), or they won't sound the same even if you change the output mode from Studio Direct to AMP Front or PWR it can't fix everything.  By tweaking in the environment you'll be monitoring by while playing is I think the best route.

 

Hope this was helpful.


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#10 Buckethead85

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 03:08 AM

I assume you were using POD HD amp sims when running direct and getting that gritty and nasty tone that didn't sound at all like what you spent time tweaking in, right?


Yes, exactly!

I think the best solution for ultimate flexibility without buying a DT50, is using POD HD amp sims or amp pre sims with the 1/4" outputs hooked to the FX Return of your tube amp. Set the "AMP/LINE" switch to "LINE". Also, set the output mode to  COMBO PWR AMP. Now you can use the patches you had and tweak them to sound good with the power tubes of your amp.

 

Yes i was planning to buy a bugera v22 using it with 4cm fx return. But why the amp/line switch must be on line? Do you find it sound better?
 

Hope this was helpful.

 

It was extremely helpful thank you very very much! :)


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#11 ftuller

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 03:42 AM

I mic a fender blues jr tube amp which also serves as my monitor. 15w is plenty loud for the venue I play in which is a decent sized movie theater. I try to get as close as possible with dialing in patches at home through the amp and then tweak at the theater. I also request flat settings for my channel on the mixer which gives me eq control via the pod and amp.

With the pod, I've learned to go with whatever sounds good even if it seems to break the rules. As such, even though I'm going out to a real amp I use the full amp fender deluxe model in the pod in studio/direct mode. My patches are set to Guitar and Same which isn't too noisy for me. I have humbuckers and use a noise gate and try not to over use gain. On the front of the pod I use the amp and pad settings. I hope that helps.
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#12 ebbsoul

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 09:12 AM

I wouldn't use a tube amp at all for monitoring unless you can somehow route FX post output tubes . Any tube will colour the sound more unwanted noise and warble.  .I use a groove tubes se11 for this with a tube amp and no mike for live  but line out.

the other solution might be a powered monitor and perhaps a small simple personal mixer.[se11 emulates 4-12 greenbacks if you line out from it.]


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#13 Buckethead85

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Posted 02 June 2013 - 07:33 AM

Yes thank you everybody! Every experience you had with live situations helps me alot, because i'm convinced that the hd500 is a great unit and once is sat up properly you can really achieve every tone possibility!

 

I had a the pod xt live before and i had the same problems live, but still it was a really good unit
 


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#14 jimsreynolds

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 12:29 AM

Yes i was planning to buy a bugera v22 using it with 4cm fx return. But why the amp/line switch must be on line? Do you find it sound better?

 

The output from the pod HD in 'amp' is not very powerful.  Sometimes, when comparing the POD output with the amp alone (amp FX loop switched off) the POD is a lot quieter and it is hard to get that extra volume without switching the output to line.  IMHO, line works better but try it both ways and see what works for you.  .


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#15 sozeg

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Posted 04 June 2013 - 03:02 PM

There are a lot of great replies on this topic. It's got me slightly worried though! I,ve been rehearsing for months with my new band in the studio and have tweaked all my sounds to sound pretty good through the pa. We will shortly be playing our first gig in a 500 capacity venue. Will my sound be awful through a different pa? I use loads of different amps on my patches so I would need to tweak every sound! My plan was to use in ear monitors but I guess there is still the risk that foh sounds bad.

If I used a dt25, surely I could d.i out from the amp to the pa instead of micing? Or is that just the same sound as going straight from the pod?
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#16 moondancer

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 03:18 AM


If I used a dt25, surely I could d.i out from the amp to the pa instead of micing? Or is that just the same sound as going straight from the pod?

 

My opinion is, if you have once dialed in a good sound on your pa - the best is with all equalizers turn to center (0) then every good technician can make your guitar sing on the FOH!

If the technician is a fool, anything you do is useless.

Normally it would be my advice: use POD + DT25/DT50 make your sound and let the technician put a microphone in front of your speakers.

If your sound is quite different than in FOH, let him hear both and kick him in the lollipop ;-)

If you don't want amps on the stage (as we do) only monitor, then you don't need a DT25 an D.I. it, there's no benefit!

Just my 2 cents ;)


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Stay tuned brothers

Regards Edgar


#17 sozeg

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Posted 05 June 2013 - 05:02 AM

Thanks for the advice. I have set up my sounds with the desk totally flat. The pa at the gig venue is much better so I'm hoping my sound will better at the gig......maybe!

My plan was not to use an amp and get on ear monitors. At the moment I just use the floor monitors from the rehearsal pa but its not great.

Cheers
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#18 Buckethead85

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 04:34 AM

Hey sozeg let us know after the gig how was your experience! ;) Anyway the fact that you change PA doesn't necessary change the whole tone! I mean the big difference is (imho) that the tone you tweak from headphones is totally different for every other equipment (amplifier, speaker, etc..) but if you tweaked the tone listening throuhg a PA its in general good for every PA and it need only slight tweaking...i've heard alot friends of mine that never had the problem i had with the pod ( and maybe like moondancer said the technician make the difference).

 


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#19 daveschutt

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 07:26 AM

I'd like to add my $.02  I play regularly at a 2000 seat venue covering a variety of guitar tones and styles of music.  I have the dream rig and even though I have good majority of the guitars my JTV models I usually fall back on the JTV for convenience and consistency.  I vary between going direct out and using a DT-25 head and cabinet.  I use wireless in-ears and usually a wireless pack for the JTV (wish Line 6 would integrate their wireless with the functionality of the VDI cable..but that' another topic.)  

 

One person mention adjusting the patches to sound good in the in-ears and I disagree wholeheartedly.  You want your patches to sound good throught the FOH.  The in-ears mix and sound is what it is, work with whomever does your monitor mix to make that more pleasing but don't tweak your patches for the monitor mix.  This also may be painfully obvious but make sure you have the HD output set to Direct Out if going direct or it will sound like you know what.

 

I go through a 4 step process to create new patches.  First using HD Edit and my PC monitor speakers (I have decent ones not uber expesive ones) if I have a patch I know is good and close I start with that otherwise I look up the artist and their rig and start building from there.  When I get in the ball park I use the headphone out to decent Sennheiser HD 280 pro headphones and dial it in more.  Next I'll hook my rig up to a EV LIve X 12" powered speaker and make adjustments at gig volume.  I cut the highs, lows, and presence to a finite EQ band that my guitar will cut through the mix and not muddy up the bass, keys and vocals and not have the brittle harsh highs you get especially when using distorted or overdriven guitar tones.  A FOH FRFR system is going to accentuate a much broader EQ band of your gutar patches than a normal guitar amp that is generally mid-focused.  Finally, at sound check I'll work with the FOH guy to fine tune anything else.  The unit is very easy to make adjustments on the fly once you get over the learning curve.  I may use 4 patches in a gig but I have everything mapped out to the F1~F4 with many switches turning on and off multiple effects.  I use the FX loop for clean boost and noise gate on almost all my patches as well.

 

That being said, if I had to play multiple venues I'd focus more on my DT-25 and mic'd cabinet set up.  I have separate common patches for each setup adjusted accordingly.  You can pick up this amp used for about the same as the others you mentioned and I strongly recommend it now especially with the new firmware that allows you to tweak the default settings of the amp itselt in standalone mode it so worth waiting and saving a few more dollars to get it.  You'll be kicking yourself later if you don't.

 

I go through the same steps but rather than adjust at gig level through the EV I use the DT-25 and 1x12.  I acutally use a 1x12 Blackheart cabinet with Eminence speaker at the venue so I don't have to shlep mine.  IMO the DT-50 is too much.  I have a DT-50 head as well and it's too loud (not to mention heavy)  I would rather have more tube saturation by cranking up the DT-25 to about 2 o'clock than the DT-50 at between 9-10 o'clock for the same volume.  If I had to play all clean I probably would use the DT-50 because it has more headroom but I don't so it is collecting dust right now.


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#20 Buckethead85

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 08:05 AM

One person mention adjusting the patches to sound good in the in-ears and I disagree wholeheartedly.  You want your patches to sound good throught the FOH.  The in-ears mix and sound is what it is, work with whomever does your monitor mix to make that more pleasing but don't tweak your patches for the monitor mix.  This also may be painfully obvious but make sure you have the HD output set to Direct Out if going direct or it will sound like you know what.

I agree with you with this

 

That being said, if I had to play multiple venues I'd focus more on my DT-25 and mic'd cabinet set up.  I have separate common patches for each setup adjusted accordingly.  You can pick up this amp used for about the same as the others you mentioned and I strongly recommend it now especially with the new firmware that allows you to tweak the default settings of the amp itselt in standalone mode it so worth waiting and saving a few more dollars to get it.  You'll be kicking yourself later if you don't.

 


The dt25 new is at 700+ euros (i'm from Italy) and i don't think i will ever find it used for less than the bugera v22  (brand new for 320 euros), but maybe if i'll find a deal i will consider it of course!

Thank you very much to share your experience with me, you clarified alot of things!
About the tweaking of the tone, i borrowed an amplifier from a friend, you have to put your ear while tweaking almost in the same position of where the mic will be! (of course not on the grillcloth ahah :) )

Because when you are playing the amp is at your feet and you perceive a different sound in comparison with the "direct" one, it's like you are already off axis!
It's better to put the amp on a chair with one of your ear-hole that point directly toward the amp! Hope it makes sense!
 


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#21 jws1982

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Posted 11 June 2013 - 11:32 AM

I'd like to add my $.02  I play regularly at a 2000 seat venue covering a variety of guitar tones and styles of music.  I have the dream rig and even though I have good majority of the guitars my JTV models I usually fall back on the JTV for convenience and consistency.  I vary between going direct out and using a DT-25 head and cabinet.  I use wireless in-ears and usually a wireless pack for the JTV (wish Line 6 would integrate their wireless with the functionality of the VDI cable..but that' another topic.)  

 

One person mention adjusting the patches to sound good in the in-ears and I disagree wholeheartedly.  You want your patches to sound good throught the FOH.  The in-ears mix and sound is what it is, work with whomever does your monitor mix to make that more pleasing but don't tweak your patches for the monitor mix.  This also may be painfully obvious but make sure you have the HD output set to Direct Out if going direct or it will sound like you know what.

 

I go through a 4 step process to create new patches.  First using HD Edit and my PC monitor speakers (I have decent ones not uber expesive ones) if I have a patch I know is good and close I start with that otherwise I look up the artist and their rig and start building from there.  When I get in the ball park I use the headphone out to decent Sennheiser HD 280 pro headphones and dial it in more.  Next I'll hook my rig up to a EV LIve X 12" powered speaker and make adjustments at gig volume.  I cut the highs, lows, and presence to a finite EQ band that my guitar will cut through the mix and not muddy up the bass, keys and vocals and not have the brittle harsh highs you get especially when using distorted or overdriven guitar tones.  A FOH FRFR system is going to accentuate a much broader EQ band of your gutar patches than a normal guitar amp that is generally mid-focused.  Finally, at sound check I'll work with the FOH guy to fine tune anything else.  The unit is very easy to make adjustments on the fly once you get over the learning curve.  I may use 4 patches in a gig but I have everything mapped out to the F1~F4 with many switches turning on and off multiple effects.  I use the FX loop for clean boost and noise gate on almost all my patches as well.

 

That being said, if I had to play multiple venues I'd focus more on my DT-25 and mic'd cabinet set up.  I have separate common patches for each setup adjusted accordingly.  You can pick up this amp used for about the same as the others you mentioned and I strongly recommend it now especially with the new firmware that allows you to tweak the default settings of the amp itselt in standalone mode it so worth waiting and saving a few more dollars to get it.  You'll be kicking yourself later if you don't.

 

I go through the same steps but rather than adjust at gig level through the EV I use the DT-25 and 1x12.  I acutally use a 1x12 Blackheart cabinet with Eminence speaker at the venue so I don't have to shlep mine.  IMO the DT-50 is too much.  I have a DT-50 head as well and it's too loud (not to mention heavy)  I would rather have more tube saturation by cranking up the DT-25 to about 2 o'clock than the DT-50 at between 9-10 o'clock for the same volume.  If I had to play all clean I probably would use the DT-50 because it has more headroom but I don't so it is collecting dust right now.

I was the one who said i set up patches through the in-ears.  I do that because we control our own in-ear mix on stage.  It never changes, where as the FOH does.  The in-ears I use don't change either.  I know my in-ears like I do my studio monitors, so I can mix and set up sounds pretty well.  It's not like I don't check them out through a PA sometimes though.  I still have to make sure they transition to other sources well.

 

So, the FOH sound guys at each venue always get the same signals from everyone in the band, save for the drummer (everything's digital except for drums).  Then, they can mix it according to their specific venue.


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