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Evil_Patrick

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  1. Keep in mind that there are those of us who play in cover bands. Hey it's a dirty job but somebody's gotta do it! The type of music and level of diversity can quite possibly mean that there's no choice other than picking different amps to be able to replicate different genres. One song might be a drop D tuning grinding along, followed by the next song being an acoustic guitar. I have found that the Mandarin Rocker is pretty good at cleaning up or getting quite dirty. So I have been trying to consistently stick to that amp as much as possible. But a good acoustic guitar sound takes a really weird combination of blocks, and the Mandarin Rocker isn't optimal. And there are even rocking songs that all of a sudden switch to that acoustic sound in the middle.
  2. Oh, yeah... Only use the Global EQ to tailor your sound when at the venue where you're performing.
  3. After years of owning and using a Helix, and making all sorts of mistakes along the way, and learning from those mistakes, I'd like to share the following. This is not a "one size fits all": Be sure to have the "big dial" output volume set at at least noon. Balance the output from patch to patch by either looking at the meters on the board channels, or using a dB meter in the room (if you have more than IEMs or headphones). Use the board gain to get the signal to just begin to touch yellow. Early on, I was screwing up by having that big dial output volume set at about 9 o'clock. What that did was it cause me to set too much output in all of the individual blocks in the chain, and on the XLR outs, in order to get adequate volume out of the Helix. See, each block has its own output level and when you start jacking them all past 0 db, crap stacks up. The result can be digital "artifacts". This was not noticeable in my IEMs, or in stage monitors, but sounded really bad in the PA. It sounded like clipping, most notable on the cleaner sounds. Easy fix, but somewhat elusive. The other big screw up that I had been doing was that I was putting a limiter in front of my amp models. This practice started years ago. I found that I could use the limiter to either under drive or overdrive what was going into the amp. But really the result of doing that is that you lose the dynamics that you can get out of how hard or quietly you play the guitar. I'm pretty sure I started doing that simply because of the amp models that I selected to begin working on patches. Sure, there might be songs that require that up front compressor sound, but I'm describing how to optimize sounds that don't. A lot has changed since that time. Most of what has changed was that I've found the time to deep-dive into almost all the available amp models. Another thing that changed was Line6's introduction of better amp models. In the early days, I was just too anxious to get going. I compromised with a "close enough". Lesson learned: if the amp model doesn't sound right initially, pick a different one! Take your time, but beware of this MOST IMPORTANT POINT; the guitar going into the front end makes a *world* of difference on the back end. IMHO, this makes more difference than almost anything else. I have a Variax, so I was able to quickly try all sorts of variations. Use the right guitar and the right pups. If you can't afford this luxury, at least pick the right pup. So, back to the earliest problem, by starting with the wrong amp model, and a lot of copy and paste later, and I had a real mess. If your 'template' sucks in any way, you'll be hosed as you use it for a starting point build for the next Patch. At a crucial point, I meticulously removed the limiter from every single patch, and changed amp models, if needed. I also chose to put a compressor on the back side of the speaker sims, which is much more akin to the way that things would be done in the studio. This helps to ensure that the post signal never causes clipping on the mixer channel. I went through every patch and set all blocks to zero at their individual outputs. I set the XLR outputs to zero. I also added to every patch a 10 band graphic equalizer, post amp/speaker, and cut everything by about 3 dB from 500 Hz and lower. That's not the guitar's "space" in the mix. That eq makes things sound way better. I was also screwing up by not using the master volume of the amp model to regulate the output of each preset and its Snapshots. Instead I was using the XLR output volume, which, like anything else in the Helix, you can set per each Snapshot in a preset. Due to the aforementioned issues, some of these output volumes at the XLR out were ridiculously high. That right there can cause clipping at the mixer. I now use the amp's Channel and Master to control the overall output levels. I went through every single patch and used these improved techniques to balance the outputs to be just barely hitting yellow bars on the mixer. Only the lead breaks are allowed to go into the yellow bars solidly. So, the right pup, straight to the right amp model, to a separate cab, to an IR, to a 10-band EQ, to a compressor (usually 4:1), to delay, to a verb, to the XLR. Set all blocks outputs to zero. Use the amp Master and Channel volumes to balance Patch/Snapshots to all the other Patch/Snapshots. And a final tip; if the IR has a high cut, set it to 4K, and set the high cut on the speaker cab at 4K as well. These are my lessons learned. Maybe they'll prevent you from stumbling like the drunk I parodied?
  4. Popularity is not a guage of the severity of a bug. Severity and priority should be evaluated as a pair. No one should be here to debate flavors of ice cream. Everyone should be here to share problems and solutions. This problem will need to be resolved by a code review, therefore this problem will never have a user-discovered workaround. That's what I'm sharing. I'm hopeful that the Line 6 developers understand this and at least have the issue in the backlog.
  5. This problem is still prevalent. The saved notes in Helix memory are randomly, and inconsistently overwritten. It's virtually impossible to recreate the bug with any consistency. I've painstakingly saved each and every snapshot after each and every single change. I've tried both manually moving the slider to the desired note, as well as the pull down "copy" "paste" method (from a snapshot that has retained the desired note). When I've cycled through everything and all seems to be set, I save and export. Moving on to another patch, doing some editing, and saving that one, I return to the one that was just meticulously verified only to find it's now holding random notes that I didn't program. Importing that same patch that I previously exported brings in the same nonsense. Since it's virtually impossible to consistently recreate this problem, the only way to fix this is with a thorough code review. There's a persistence problem with the life cycle of the variable used to store and recall the desired notes.
  6. Just got the delivery of my first Helix. It came with 2.21 and I've blown a good 3 hours trying to jump though various hoops to upgrade to 2.3 I followed the instructions found here: http://line6.com/support/topic/18284-latest-helix-firmware-230%E2%80%94nov-21-2017/ Specifically, the instructions in GREEN, as they seemed to apply to me. My computer system is a Windows 7. After downloading and installing, which seems to work, neither the HX Edit nor the Line6 Updater sees (via USB) the connected, brand new Helix. I have gone through multiple Installs and uninstalls of the Line6 Helix bundles, with multiple reboots after each. I have powered down the Helix, waited 30+ seconds, powered it back up, and restarted one or the other of the applications (HX Edit or Line6 Updater) but they always give error messages stating that the device is not connected. Well, it is connected. I have unplugged the USB (gives the familiar "disconnect" tone on the Windows system) and plugged it back in (and get that familiar "connected" tone on the Windows system). I have used the Device Manager and can positively see that there is a "HELIX" device now connected to the system. At one point, I loaded the previous rev of the Line6 Updater and it actually saw the device connected. I then cleaned off the 2.3 HX Edit and downloaded and installed the previous rev of HX Edit, but no....still can't see the connected device. Arg! I've watched a nice help video, but it offered no hints for my particular issue. Since there are Line6 instructions that tell users to "Use their existing HX Edit to back up presets", it seems that the use-case for new owners (those without an existing HX Edit) might have been skipped....or not tested? I don't know. Can someone please explain how to get over this hurdle? Thanks in advance!
  7. Problem solved. User error. I feel like I owe it to the community to share what I had done wrong even though it really makes me look like the fool! :-) Be sure to know every place where you have assigned an expression pedal to some functionality. It may be that your minimum and maximum values are not what you thought you had set. My sincerest thanks to all of the users who responded so quickly with ideas about what possibly could be wrong.
  8. Great point! I will check that. I'll also try simply reconstructing the patch from ground zero -- taking a blank slot and starting over. Since I can see all of the settings on the amp and effects (even though no sound comes out), it shouldn't be too hard to give that a shot as well.
  9. Good guess, but pretty much impossible in my case. My variax CPU is not actually in my guitars. It's rack-mounted and all of my electrics are Ghost Loaded Floyds that connect to the rack. The volume and tone are in the rack as well, and always cranked to the max. I never touch those knobs.
  10. Greetings, I have an HD500 that I purchased in 2012. I also have a Variax. I use the two together, with the Variax Ethernet cable. At the end of 2015 I updated the firmware on both the Variax and the HD500 to the latest and greatest at that time. I have most of my patches set to also select specific Variax models, including custom tuned models that I created. Everything was working GREAT until yesterday. As a fully immersed computer scientist with an electrical engineering degree as well, it would be strange to hear anyone suggest upgrading the firmware yet again from a configuration that was working fine for over a year. Hopefully, someone has knowledge of the root cause of the following problem, and we won’t need to travel the path of “spray and prayâ€. At this time, I have about 40 patches that work flawlessly. But 3 patches have begun some odd behavior. All three are basic, clean sounds; a noise gate, a red comp, a clean amp with maybe a slight bit of modulation and reverb on the back end. Each patch selects either the Variax banjo, sitar, or a custom tuning. The problem now is that all three of these patches (and only these specific three out of the 40 patches I have programmed) are now dead silent when foot selected. They were working fine a week ago. Since that time, I only made some output balance adjustments between some of the other 40 patches, and not these. If I’m in the POD HD500 Edit app on my desktop, with the HD500 connected via USB, I can load these dead-silent patches to the HD500 from the app and they come alive and sound fine. I can do a “save†on the HD500, and they still play. But as soon as I select another footswitch patch, and try to come back to these problematic patches, they are once again silent. I can even “push†the sound from the POD HD500 Edit, have it come alive and be playing, hit save on the HD500, push the same footswitch assigned to that patch, and it goes dead silent. I have tried a “restore†of sorts by loading saved bundles from 3 and 4 weeks ago. Same problem. I have tried rebooting the 500 (power cycling) --- same problem. I can bring up any working patch, and manually select (on the variax) the banjo, sitar, and custom tuning, and they play fine. Those settings on the Variax are alive and well. WTF, BBQ?!?
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