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Showing content with the highest reputation on 11/19/2019 in Posts

  1. 2 points
    Very minimal... No one is going to be able to tell you the exact value, though. The values in that chart aren't really exact values. They were arrived at through deductive reasoning. It's still a good general reference, though.
  2. 1 point
    How cheaply can I put together a minimalist (sort of) do EVERYTHING home studio that doubles as a touring rig. Extremely easily provided cheap is relative. And all these amounts are in Australian dollars. Hoping the end result of this journey is useful to any of you wondering how to maximise your setup. So, in some rough order, what I purchased, why, for roughly how much, and what it can do. First purchase was a Line6 Variax JTV-59. Bought it for the ability to use alternate tunings on the fly as I could not afford multiple guitars. It should be noted the guitar modelling was a bonus, not the main reason for purchase. Bought used from a dealer in Brisbane for $1200 Already had the M-Audio Fast Track interface, cost me about $100 from a dealer in Canberra in 2011. The Shure SM-58 was even older, couldn’t swear to it, but I think it cost around $150 new at the time. So now I own: (A) a bunch of completely customisable virtual guitars (electric, acoustic, banjo, sitar, etc) with a bunch of completely customisable virtual tunings. (B) An interface that effectively DI’s guitar (or keyboard if you’re so inclined) as well as vocals with adjustable gain and output. (C) A highly respected industry standard vocal microphone. I won’t bore you with the computer build, but back in 2017, to upgrade my Mac Pro to Mojave REQUIRED the purchase of a Radeon RX580 (specifically this card, I’m not kidding!) Which happens to have 5 Video outputs, And that’s when I started to think about how to set this whole thing up. Anyway, my Mac Pro cost a bit under $2,400 start to finish 18 months ago and should frankly see me through for quite a long time to come. It also runs 3 dummy accounts in the background which feed 3 individual iTunes libraries to different AppleTV’s. Partially why I’m a bit trapped in the Apple walled garden. Please note that I have an extensive background in Apple hardware and software, so I designed accordingly. But this system would work equally well with a PC based setup at significantly less cost, so if you’re a PC guy, adjust the figure accordingly. So that’s $3,600 so far. Not pocket change, but far cheaper than any equivalent multiple guitar setup. Next was the Bass. Always, repeat, ALWAYS wanted the Kubicki. (Stu Hamm you ruined me you horror show of a bassist, LOL!) Way out of my price range, so I cheated. I bought a 30 year old unauthorised Japanese prototype (Google it, it was a pretty much a literal world class screw up in communication) gutted the electronics and bought all original pickups, hardware and electrics directly from Karla at Kubicki. Who had no problem with what I was doing whatsoever, for the purists screaming foul at this point. An absolutely lovely lady who did everything she could to help me realise my little dream. So go buy stuff from her. Anyway, the entire exercise came to $2,200. Again, not pocket change. But hey, for your DREAM vintage bass, with genuine BRAND NEW electronics… well, you do the subjective math. But at the end of the day, this system works with the cheapest bass guitar you’re happy to play, so again, adjust the figures accordingly. So it’s $5,800. And with Garage Band on a powerful Mac, jamming along to iTunes is happening, and the basics are all happening. But I want more… more, more, hahahaha! I then decided on the Helix LT. Why? From a background of pretty much everything electrical, AV, Hi-Fi or IT based from a VERY early age, here’s one of the few across the board statements I subscribe to… “Buy the best you can afford and don’t upgrade until it dies!” This is my second pedalboard. Ever. My first was THE first. The Boss ME-5, and yes I still own it and yes it still works as well as it ever did. THAT”S why. So why Helix and not Kemper, Headrush, Custom Board, etc ad nauseam? A number of reasons. (A) Drives the Variax power and software via a Cat6 Neutrik lead. (B) Effects remain compact, easily accessible, instantly portable. (C) Amp and Cab sims at a top level tier. The Kemper/Helix debate rages, personally I’ve come to my own conclusion that they’re slightly different beasts and if you’re the type who truly needs the n’th level of modelling accuracy then you should probably own both. Or pay more attention to your actual playing and composing than the whole ’tone wars’ silliness. IR’s for cabs are easily used as well. (D) Enough inputs and outputs. My system is for 90% home use, 10% for taking to a mates house. Didn’t see any possible future need for more I/O or scribble strips on the Helix Floor for my application. And I already had a headphone amp and microphone interface. YMMV. So $1500 and a brand new Helix is mine, coincidentally from the same dealer in Canberra I bought the M-Audio interface from all those years ago. I’m in Maitland, go figure. Total so far, $7,300. For any guitar, any tuning, any amp, any cab, any effect in any order, any mic at essentially any distance and all recordable and portable. So fleshing this system out was an ALTO 3000w PMPO (Lord knows what it’s ACTUAL wattage is, I literally laughed when I saw that.) $400 on special. $7,700. Now I’m playing live… figuratively anyway. The balanced headphone amp is not, strictly speaking, necessary. I’ve had it for at least 10 years. There is a 1/4” out headphone jack on the LT, but since I route ALL audio through the Helix, it made sense to use Hi-Fi cans through the balanced amp for listening purposes, and studio cans direct to the Helix for mixing and mastering purposes. Use what you have. And yeah, this is a cheat. Because the monitors were actually given to me by a friend who used to use them in his DJ’ing days in Ibiza (a clever front to cover his 3 year secret mission of ridding the world of cocaine one line at a time... he failed, but we remain thankful of the sacrifices he made for our safety!) :) $200 got me three 19” Lenovo monitors which sit above the main 32”, and a 24” which sits on the desk return with the HELIX. The 32” I’ve had for years. The monitor stand is literally a pice of sanded scrap plank with three $15 Bunnings monitor brackets screwed to it. I got an offcut of 35x90 pine, cut the base and uprights (3. Main upright centered in line with the base crossmember. Screw the 2nd and 3rd upright front and rear to both the main (1st) upright and the base crossmember itself. Creating a 90 x 105 post footprint.) Then connect the monitor board to the main upright at the appropriate height to clear your main monitor and leave just enough space to top mount a webcam. The advantage here is it puts the 3 Lenovo’s at eye height when I play standing up. The webcam is also not necessary, strictly speaking but I owned it and it has obvious uses. And this setup is quite capable of podcasting at a pro level as well. Using Hydrogen as a drum program, says drums, bass, guitar, and vocals, all taken care of. $8000 even. And it could stop there. But lets go for the brass ring! (You’ll see what I did there in a minute) Picked up an LTD EC-10 for $200. Why? Because it’s Gibson (24.5”) scale, same as the Variax, but has 24 frets, for those times you want the high notes. Plus I use it for Rocksmith 2014 on an old x-box 360. Great little learning tool. I then (literally) bolted a $300 Floyd Rose FRX surface mount floating tremolo and lock nut system. (As an aside, I may yet switch to locking tuners, Jury still out.) $8,500 and I now have a backup guitar that does the only two things the Variax can’t. I don’t particularly care about electronics as this guitar is for a different purpose. I also picked up a Schecter bass with bowed neck for $50. Got a luthier going to replace the rod for (quoted $400) at some point because it’s a 32” scale and a 24 fret neck. Exactly the same as the Kubicki. Even the profiles the same. No laminate neck though. :( And I will be setting it up for BEAD tuning. By using Jam Origin’s Midi Guitar 2 Synthesiser software (and Midi Bass 1.2 Synthesiser software) for $150, I can use ANY of my instruments through the Fast Track interface for a dry guitar or bass signal to the synthesiser as either a standalone program (I do it this way to spread out the processing power being used) or if you run less cores it can be installed as a plugin to your DAW. It can also be used in conjunction with the Helix to take advantage of the Helix effects chain. Your guitar or bass is now… well, anything really. Drums, Piano, Keyboard, Synths, Horns (Cause you can’t have a brass ring without a brass section! See!) even further guitar and amp/effect modelling including alternate tunings. $8,700 and into the home stretch. To take advantage of the synth abilities in a live situation, there’s a iOS version, which costs $50USD I think? And can be run with old iPhone direct to the helix. There’s 3 or 4 youtube videos where a guy walks you through it live. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X4K_Kuqdwtw So allow $300 for the software, cables and decent old iPhone. Or maybe just a $300 laptop to run the desktop version $9000 and I believe you have the ability to write, record, mix and master any instrument at a professional level. The desk is a $50 gumtree corner desk I cut down to suit. The entire ’Studio’ is exactly 2 meters square (20 square feet). They’re my monitor stands for the moment… Don’t you judge me!!! $9,000 is a fair chunk of change. But as an apples to apples comparison that’s about the same money as a serious entry level piano. A single cello at this level sells for between $15,000 to $30,000 in Sydney (googling it as I type this). And as mentioned throughout, a lot of alternatives (PC, instrument quality) could bring the overall price down considerably. It’s not cheap. Its just ridiculously inexpensive in the bang for buck department. For a system that, as far as I can tell, do just about anything. It may not be everyones perfect setup… but she’ll do me. I’m attaching pics of the Rig itself and an (I believe) complete flowchart of my connections and workflow. I just turned 50. So hopefully this lasts me as long as my ME-5 has. Hope this helps people. Happy to answer questions.
  3. 1 point
    Hello all, I know this topic has probably been covered, but I couldn't find all the answers I was looking for. First, I am strictly an at home hobbyist with no gigging aspirations in the near or distant future yet. I have not been playing guitar very long, but I was looking to upgrade my amp and stumbled upon the helix route. It intrigues me because I feel I can get more tones at lower volumes than a tube amp. Also, I like to play a lot of different styles (John Mayer all the way to high gain stuff Killswitch, Tool ect), so the amp/cab simulation might be a better route than having multiple amps and pedals. So I have a couple questions. 1. Stomp, LT, or Floor? Is the Stomp too limiting with 6 blocks? Will I be looking to upgrade to a bigger model in a year as my effects and playing knowledge increases, or is it perfect for my situation? For a regular Joe schmo, is the floor worth the extra money over the LT? (I am in no rush to buy right away, I want to do my research, and will save the money to buy what's best for my situation.) Also, any disadvantages to buying used when it comes to software/registering the unit? 2. For my situation, do I get studio monitors or a FRFR PA like the headrush units. I want to be able to play/ practice without having to wear headphones all of the time. What would sound best for all genres at moderate volumes? Any brands or suggestions (Moderately priced) 3. What's the deal with a headphone amp? Saw someone say the LT does not have a headphone amp and that they would need a separate one. Do I need one to use headphones in my scenario? 4. Last one, a lot of people say you will not get the "amp in the room sound" and will sound like a amp micced up through a PA. What exactly does that mean. For me, the new inexperienced player, will I even be able decipher the difference because my ear isn't trained? I've never micced the amp I have now. I know to some, these questions may seem elementary, but I'm ignorant in the multi effects realm and still green in the amp/pedal/gear world. I was just looking to avoid playing the tone chasing GAS game if the Helix can cover a lot of the ground. I also know a lot of people will tell me that I have to try them. I respect that, but I want your guys advice because I am so Uneducated in the area of multieffects, I'm not even sure I could make that decision solely off 30 minutes to an hour of noodling around with a unit in a store. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks
  4. 1 point
    I'm not sure what your budget is and I'm not sure if you are interested in recording or have a computer setup. Looks like you've gotten a lot of feedback so my 2 cents may be a repeat. A) Regardless of what equipment you buy, if you're going 'too' cheap - don't bother. You'll hate it. B) Studio speakers or PA/Headrush/etc? "IF" you're interested in having stereo and/or recording - then go with a couple of Yamaha HS8s or equivalent. That will be very capable for in-home play. If not stereo - then I can't stress, or recommend, highly enough - a single 112 Powercab Plus which will take care of the "cab in the room" thing you were referring to. C) Floor/LT/etc? - well...IF you ARE interested in recording and thinking of going the computer interface route, then you may be overlooking Helix 'Native' plug-in as an option, in which case you wouldn't need anything else other than an inexpensive hardware computer connection and most basic of recording software that typically is free with purchase of the hardware device. This would be the least expensive route without sacrificing quality in my opinion - and opens up a lot of other possibilities as well. D) AGAIN - since it appears you've already gotten a lot of advice on the Helix units themselves. I want to do you a favor and stress above all else that you don't skimp on your choice of speaker/s. All the Helix, and similar mod devices, change and improve daily and become dinosaurs before you know it. Speaker technology is not only slower to change, but it also only puts out what you put into it. So put as much thought and money as you can into your choice of speaker/s first and your concern for which Helix device - second. If you spend a little extra and make a 'good' speaker choice, you'll be living with them a lot longer than a mod pedal. If you approach this the other way around you'll just end up trying to put glitter on a turd I can assure you. E) The short version: The Helix Floor and Powercab Plus 112 are simply awesome if you can afford it. I'm of the opinion that if anyone disses the PC+ for bedroom or small venue play - they aren't using it correctly. Happy hunting!
  5. 1 point
    Can't help you with the rest, but here's a list of what every amp, cab, and effect is a model of, courtesy Line 6 itself:
  6. 1 point
    If you want to just use your stomp for effects in your amp loop, the amp's FX send goes to stomp in, the stomp out goes to the amp's FX return. You can add some more flexibility with additional cables, but nothing wrong with KISS.
  7. 1 point
    To put the Stomp in the amp's loop, you connect the amp's FX Loop SEND to the Stomp's FX Return (using a mono cable to LEFT/MONO) , then send the Stomp's signal to the amp's FX Loop Return via the 1/4" LEFT/MONO Out (you can also use a SEND Block, but that wastes a block). You set the Stomp's INPUT Block to RETURN L/R and connect the Stomp's LeftMono Out to the amp's Fx Loop Return. Be sure to set the "Output Level" and "Send/Return L" in Global Settings INS/OUTS to match the amp's FX Loop Level - INSTRUMENT or LINE (-10dBV for stompboxes or +4dBV for Rack/studio grade units). You won't blow anything up by trying both, just keep your Volume knob turned down while doing it - especially if you're using headphones!
  8. 1 point
    Roland Orzabal of Tears For Fears also has a pair of DT50-212's and has them both on stage with hims when he plays. Roland and Steve's DT50 amps,.... had the honor and pleasure of servicing all four amps.
  9. 1 point
    1) Personally, for a new person getting into modeling I think it might be counterproductive to go with an HX Stomp simply due to the fact that the majority of video tutorials and presets you can buy or get free are going to be for the larger units and wouldn't work correctly on the HX Stomp. The most important functional differences in my opinion between the LT and the full floor unit comes down to two things: Durability and Flexibility. The Floor is built like a tank, but that may not be important if it's going to sit in the house. The additional inputs on the Floor are useful especially when it comes to recording or using external effects or additional inputs. If you don't see those things as important to you then the LT is the answer. 2) As far as output, be aware that you tend to get what you pay for in this area. I think it's silly to spend the kind of money one spends on a Helix and then attach the cheapest outputs you can buy because no matter how good the Helix is, it will always be limited by the quality of the output device. This goes for headphones as well. Probably the most often recommended heaphones among Helix users are the Beyerdynamic DT770 in the higher ohm configurations as they tend to be more consistent with what you get from good quality monitors. I personally own the 80 ohm version but many go higher that than. I own quite a number of different headphones but the DT770's are the only ones I use with the Helix. Given your situation you could go with studio monitors or live powered speakers. The real gotcha here is that in order to get the best representation of the sound out of the Helix with live powered speakers you really need to be playing close to or at performance level volumes due to the fact that's what they're designed to do and tend to be more affected by the way we hear things known as the Fletcher-Munson curve. If you do go with studio monitors there's a WORLD of difference between cheaper speakers and higher quality speakers in this area. Personally I have several different live speakers that I use. Mostly I depend on my Yamaha DXR12, but I've also used my QSC CP8 as well as my Electro Voice ZLX-12P. As far as studio monitors I use Yamaha HS-7's and have for many, many years. 3) The only real use for a headphone amp would be if you were to choose a very high impedance pair of headphones as the higher the impedance the lower the output. 4) Personally I think the whole "amp in the room" thing is way overstated. The fact is, the amp in the room experience is only heard by the person standing near a traditional amp and cab. Once you mic that amp and cab and send it through a PA or record it with a mic, you have the same situation as you have with the Helix. Audiences rarely experience the amp in the room sound. What is also a fact with traditional speakers is the sound varies greatly depending on where you're standing relative to the speaker simply due to the way they work. This is the reason why so much attention is given both in live performances and in the studio to what mic's are used and how they're placed on the cabinet....the same way it's done in the Helix when working with studio monitors or live powered monitors. What you're hearing using good headphones, studio monitors or live powered speakers is the sound you would hear on a production recording that you've been listening to your whole life or in every concert you've ever attended. The amp in the room only relates to what a musician hears standing near a cabinet. Even in concerts nowaday the artist rarely hears the amp in a room effect because they're hearing the mic'd up version of the sound through their in ears.
  10. 1 point
    1) If you can afford it, I would go with the LT. The floor unit is VERY robust so for your situation I would save my money and get the LT. It has all of the modelling capabilities of the floor Helix. Just not as many connection options and not as robust. For example the floor unit has 4 FX sends and returns but the LT only 2. 2) Get the best monitors you can afford. If you want the "amp in the room" experience, consider something in the Line 6 Power cab line. The people that have them seem to like them. I think the Headrush monitors have gotten mostly good reviews for the price. Having said all of that you can just run through whatever stereo you have at home. In fact, if your car stereo has an aux 1/8" input, you could play it through your car stereo. You'd need some adapters but it can be done. 3)The LT has a headphone output jack so that someone was wrong. 4) Here's the best way to answer this. You need to look at amp modelling a little differently than using a real amp. What amp modelling actually simulates is a miced amp in a studio with you isolated, listening to the amp in a control room through the control room speakers. That's essentially what you will hear. It will not sound like what an amp sounds like with you standing next to or near it. Think of the Helix as a virtual studio and your bedroom/home is your studio control room. So you're actually looking for good speakers for monitoring mixes and stuff like that. The Line 6 Power Cab is something I've never tried but many people say it works for them in recreating the "amp in a room" experience. That's what it's designed to do. Also, try and buy from somewhere with a 30 day money back, no questions asked, guarantee. That will be enough time for you to decide, so yes, 30 minutes in a music store is not enough time.
  11. 1 point
    Have you considered the HX Effects?
  12. 1 point
    Here is mine. All Helix direct to the PA.
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