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"Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-01 21:36:52

I know the POD is supposed to be as real as possible, but something like "tone suck" is something I don't want emulated. I've noticed that the sound is cleaner, for example if I have no effects whatsoever direct to the amp/cab/microphone emulation, than when I have pedals like a chorus or wah bypassed in the chain. When these pedals are present in the chain but bypassed, the sound is somewhat less defined than when the slots are clear.

I've only noticed this issue while using distortion (High Gain amp or Low Gain Amp + Distortion Pedal) and I haven't tested if it makes a difference in clean setups.

I think this calls for a suggestion on a forecoming update. I'm not asking that they remove this feature completely, but they could add a choice in System Setup (like they did with Impedance) so we can enable or disable the "tone suck" effect of bypassed pedals.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by spaceatl on 2013-01-01 22:00:47

There is a choice...On the tones where you have the suck, set InputZ to 1M or 3M...if InputZ is set to AUTO then you you can get some tone suck on Input 1...This doesn't affect input 2 or a Vax...This isn't emulation, it's actually an analog rendering with a real resistor network that varies the impedance of input 1 based on what is first in the chain...

See 2*4 on the advanced manual for more information...



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by jimsreynolds on 2013-01-02 03:13:12

+1 Space.  If you prefer you can setup so that InputZ (Input Impedance) is fixed for all your patches rather than on a patch-by-patch basis.  Check the advanced manual for details on this also.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 05:41:24

I have a global impedance input of 1M. I also tried 3M but sometimes the sound is too bright with this setting. I don't choose automatic because I wouldn't want to have less than 1M impedance in any case. I don't like the darker tone/sound of lower impedances.

Maybe I didn't explained myself well, but the problem exists where pedals are in the chain but bypassed using a global impedance setting of 1M. The sound (I've only tested with high gain amps or an active distortion pedal in the chain) is not a clean/smooth as when no pedals are selected in the chain. You can do an A/B comparison, one with a bypassed Wah/Chorus pedals and another one without any pedals in the slots.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by phil_m on 2013-01-02 06:16:55

This could be because the effects you're mentioning are true stereo, and if you're only using one input for the tone (you have input B set to 'Variax' or 'Aux' instead of 'Same') the way the signal is being handled is different. A true stereo effect will take the mono input signal and output a mono signal. So if only the left side is coming in, only the left side will come out. The other mono and mono in/stereo effects on the HD react different. If they have a mono signal coming in, they will still output a stereo signal. This could cause some tonal differences like you're noticing. The workaround is to set Input B to 'same' or to make sure you have a mono effect at the beginning of your chain.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 06:35:08

You have a good point there. My settings are Guitar in input 1 and Same in input 2. I tried the suggested setting in the forum using Variax in input 2, but the loss of gain was substantial. Still, what you said could be the reason that the sound is modified in the chain. I guess I'll just have to make different patches in which the wah or pedals are in the chain only when they need to be active.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by hurghanico on 2013-01-02 06:46:54

lachinelli ha scritto:

...You can do an A/B comparison, one with a bypassed Wah/Chorus pedals and another one without any pedals in the slots...

attention to the wah..
are you sure that is truly bypassed?

maybe you don't have the off/on functionality of the wah assigned to the expression pedal toe switch, therefore when you click the toe switch, you're changing only the function of the expression pedal from EXP1 to EXP2, but you're not actually turning the wah effect off.. leaving your tone still filtered by the wah..

if so, you need to go to the switch assignment screen and select the expression toe switch to control the wah fx effective off/on state..



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 08:09:06

Yeah, I bypass wah and other pedals from POD HD500 Edit.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by spaceatl on 2013-01-02 08:55:59

This is just my opinion...by all means use what works for you...

Using the Same setting on input 2 will certainly give more signal in the chain...convienient for driving an amp model a bit harder with a lower drive settings...however, the FX will react to this also...and not in a very nice way...It's neat for some amp models, not so neat for some of the FX...The tape echo is a good example of this as the modelled clipping is a lot more apparent and happens quickly...Anyway, I do use the same setting for a couple of tones that use the Park Pre as it doesn't saturate very much...and a few dual tone patches, but mostly I have input 2 shut down as internal gain in the signal chain is too high for my tastes when input 2 is set to same...



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by hurghanico on 2013-01-02 09:03:43

lachinelli ha scritto:

..You can do an A/B comparison, one with a bypassed Wah/Chorus pedals and another one without any pedals in the slots..

I did the A/B comparison you were talking about, and... yes, I confirm that there are some differences between the no-fx-version and the bypassed-fx-one..

the no-fx v. is somehow richer in harmonics, and sounds more natural..

the differences are subtle and not so big but are there, it isn't so easy to describe it, but in the byp.-fx v.  it seems almost like the signal was down-sampled and with a limiter-like-fx applied to it



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 09:13:54

spaceatl escribió:

This is just my opinion...by all means use what works for you...

Using the Same setting on input 2 will certainly give more signal in the chain...convienient for driving an amp model a bit harder with a lower drive settings...however, the FX will react to this also...and not in a very nice way...It's neat for some amp models, not so neat for some of the FX...The tape echo is a good example of this as the modelled clipping is a lot more apparent and happens quickly...Anyway, I do use the same setting for a couple of tones that use the Park Pre as it doesn't saturate very much...and a few dual tone patches, but mostly I have input 2 shut down as internal gain in the signal chain is too high for my tastes when input 2 is set to same...

After I tested that method I came to the conclusion that people that don't need high gain and want a cleaner sound can use it. In my case, I use high gain and proper settings that don't make the signal to clip get me where I want. To avoid clipping I compare the raw sigal output with the processed signal and both should have the same levels. Of course, I neither abuse the output of any pedal/amp I use.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 09:18:00

hurghanico escribió:

lachinelli ha scritto:

..You can do an A/B comparison, one with a bypassed Wah/Chorus pedals and another one without any pedals in the slots..

I did the A/B comparison you were talking about, and... yes, I confirm that there are some differences between the no-fx-version and the bypassed-fx-one..

the no-fx v. is somehow richer in harmonics, and sounds more natural..

the differences are subtle and not so big but are there, it isn't so easy to describe it, but in the byp.-fx v.  it seems almost like the signal was down-sampled and with a limiter-like-fx applied to it


Exactly, this is what I meant, but maybe because I'm not a native english speaker, I couldn't explain myself well. The difference is subtle, meaning it doesn't destroy the signal, but to my standards it does make a difference enough for me to make different patches to avoid this problem when I'm going to record.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 09:21:00

I'd like Line 6 to take this matter into account for next update and they add in System Options the choice whether we want "tone suck" or not when pedals are bypassed.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by hurghanico on 2013-01-02 09:49:11

I discovered also the following:

I hear the above differences only when I have an amp model in the path..

I imagine that a possible explanation could be:

every block has its own input and output impedances that influence the signal going to the next blocks toward the amp..

the GUITAR IN-Z setting forces only the response of the first block input, but not also the other blocks which have their own modeled and still active input and output impedances..

the impedance is active and influences always the signal even when the fx is bypassed, but for some reason only if there is an amp on the path..

lachinelli ha scritto:

I'd like Line 6 to take this matter into account for next update and they add in System Options the choice whether we want "tone suck" or not when pedals are bypassed.

if you want the Line6 listen to you, you have to write to them directly: http://line6.com/company/contact/productfeedback/



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by phil_m on 2013-01-02 10:33:06

I don't believe the effect blocks have input impedance modeled like that. Remember the input-Z isn't simply digital manipulation, it's an actual analog change to the input impedance. If you hooked up an ohmmeter to the input, the measured impedance would change as you changed the setting. That setting doesn't change anything with the effects blocks themselves. What it does is change how the effect blocks affect the input impedance.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by hurghanico on 2013-01-02 10:52:15

I agree with you about the GUITAR IN-Z setting is an actual analog change to the physical-input impedance, but it is also true that if for that setting you select "auto" it is applied an automatic change to the input (although physical) impedance, depending on which is the first block, according to a table of parameters that was measured and therefore involved into account... and to me it seems probable that the respective impedances of the various effects have been modeled along with the other parameters and original characteristics, especially considering that the impedance is a parameter that has enough influence on the sound..



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by scheater5 on 2013-01-02 15:47:16

I, and several others here, get massive gain patches with Input 2 set to Variax.  I reiterate what spaceatl said - use what works for you - but try thinking of your pod like a real amp rig.  Put a distortion pedal in front of an amp, and crank the level on the distortion pedal.  That's the way you would slam an amp in real life - so do it on the pod.  Epic results.  Input 2 set to Variax, no tone suck from stereo pedals, massive gain.  Sounds like exactly what you want.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 17:16:24

That's why I emphasized I don't use the 'automatic' setting of impedance; I have it in 1 M as a global preset, that is active in every situation, whether there are 2 or 3 bypassed pedals or no pedals in the chain.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 17:17:16

I'll write them, posting this thread too for them to see I'm not the only one who realized about this heh.



Re: "Tone suck" when pedals are off
by lachinelli on 2013-01-02 20:15:05

Just sent a message to Line 6 about this matter. I'll inform you if I get an answer.




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