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Everything posted by rvroberts

  1. Hi - a brave move! Depending on what it is you get form a big amp, you probably need to be thinking about how you will be hearing the Helix. Be aware, there is a big difference between hearing a good Marshall sim at conversation level and at 100db! Also check out the Fletcher Munson effect - your tone that sounds great at low level is all boom and harsh highs at high levels. So be sure you can monitor at a level you can relate too - or use different variants of the same tone for quiet and band level situations. So just be aware in general that you need to expect to deal with stuff that a sound guy/engineer would normally be doing as you are now controlling a simulation of an amp and a speaker cab mic'd with a certain mic. None of this means you will be worse off in any way. I don't miss the amp in the room at all because I'm hearing studio quality guitar sounds. At stage level, I can still play the feedback etc - obviously a bit less so at home level. Expect to need to adjust this totally HiFi device to be limited to a guitar amp frequency where it's needed - so you might want pristine delays requiring a bit more frequency range, but you want a cab sound that is not harsh - and that means high and low cuts at a minimum - very possibly a full EQ just after/before your cab. The short message here is any distortion sounds really bad if you have a pile of high frequencies - and guitar amps and speakers have very limited frequency response - and our ears like exactly that! You will have lots of experience of pedals. If you have your amp sim set up well, the pedals do exactly what you expect. If they don't (you hear all the time - I added a fuzz and it sounds terrible - that is a clear indication of the amp not set up well (or you just hate fuzz!!). So My advice is not to get too involved with the presets that come with the Helix - use them for a reference by all means - but if you learn to use the unit, you will never use them for anything more. Start at the basics - start with an amp and a cab you know how it should sound. Learn to make it sound like it should. When you get that the rest is just pedals you mostly know anyhow. You might have to figure out the "wiring" sometimes - so definitely learn how to use the full set of paths in the Helix - but if you can take an amp that's sounding good - you are 90% done. Learn to backup! You can take any risk you like if you know you can always go back! Snapshots are great - but I've found trying to have a preset for every song is a bit extreme and leaves you a bit tied up when you need/want to improvise. Generally think in rigs - so I have 2 Marshall rigs (presets) - with 8 snapshots each - that covers every case of a Marshall sound I need - there are flangers and chorus, delay and reverb settings within that that do 15 songs. I have 2 Fenderish rigs for clean and tube screamer driven sounds with a batch of pedals again - does all the clean to driven stuff except....... The Vox rigs - that do cleanish jangle to driven Vox sounds. Then I have a few others that are for songs that need something more specific or unique. Done! Not that I actually use a Vox for both presets - it's just that sonic territory. Same goes for Marshalls - Friedman might be one of your Marshalls and if you are a Marshall man, you might need an extra Marshall based rig or 2.......... My point is you may well be able to keep this down to 8 rigs - which means you can get to rig with an absolute minimum of tap dancing. Worth thinking about? 2 pages of presets absolute tops I recon! Anyhow, be patient - expect it to take a little time. There will be some frustration.......Youtube videos will help a lot - but by time you have a handle on this thing you will find you disagree as often as you agree with them. They aren't gods - some of them are just a month ahead of you! When you know what you are doing, you won't use the marketplace - I bet. (except maybe IRs) You've got all that experience of the real world and it does translate - when you know what you are doing. So like I said - start with an amp and cab - if you can get an amp and a cab sounding good - especially one that's just lightly driven - you will be on your way.
  2. rvroberts

    HX Stomp FRFR

    OK - I'm not a Powercab user - maybe the experience is somehow super special........... But for the money, you'd have to consider 2x FRFR108s in stereo. I run a stereo rig, and I'm hooked! I don't use the 108s, but I've been thinking about auditioning them as it's such a compact rig.
  3. Well, it’s only going to take you say 10 mins to test my information. if it works- then it works! If not, you lost 10 mins
  4. Learn to use snapshots. They change instantly. Then you make a small number of presets, each having a full set of snapshots. Think of each preset as a rig that can do a number of songs. this lets you get around quickly- you don’t have a hugely long string of presets- you might get by with no more than 8 - especially if you used one amp in the past. You might then have one preset that is say a Marshall based rig and a collection of pedals that gets you maybe 8 songs in your set. You might have a chorus in your crunch sound in one snapshot and a flanger in the next song, so one snapshot is Marshall with chorus and the next one is same Marshall, maybe with slightly different EQ and gain and chorus saved as a different snapshot.- still the same preset. Then when you use up all the possibilities and you still need say another crunch with univibe, you build the next preset. and then you have a few presets say built round say a Mesa sound. They all have say 8 snapshots, so you can have a lot of variety there with no delay switching, just be sure to not change presets during a song and it will all be fine. Change snapshots. Learn to program all the controls inside pedals and the amp so you can change flange speed and amp gain for example from one snapshot to the next. Changing presets has a delay- never do it in the middle of a song.
  5. There’s nothing “nuanced” about high and low cuts. well not if you do the sort of thing that makes the full frequency Helix output sound like a decent guitar amp. Typically you cut below say 100hz drastically and above say 5.5Khz also drastically. That’s because a guitar amp into a typical guitar speaker box has almost all its energy in that range. If you want to sound really fat you might go down to 80hz, but even that gets muddy in a band contest if you have keys. How you do it is up to you. Purists will tweak it for every patch, but I have a basic global EQ and then do the fine tuning with an EQblock in my patch. I’m not using the Stomp, so I’m not needing to be economical with modules. Try it. Start with some drastic EQ and the ad an amp and speaker in front of that - so you are tuning the amp with the EQ right from the start. and while you are at it, boost some midrange to taste for balls and thickness - picking the right frequencies to boost a little brings a lot of OK tones to life. Then, obviously tweak to taste!
  6. rvroberts

    Fractal FM9

    Yep - the price will be interesting to know. I'm sure it's a serious competitor - but I'm invested in the Helix world, so it will have to do something fantastic to make me think about what I expect to be substantial dollars. For new digital take up and people wanting to upgrade from a pod Go or something else lower spec'd if the dollars are competitive, it might start to take significant market share. Competition is good for us all - sooner or later there will be a device that's enough of a step forward we will all find we start to get GA$!! Is this it?
  7. I hear this a lot. I'm wondering if people don’t understand what causes feedback? if you are playing at a live band level, with an overdriven sound and you don’t get feedback, you are having a different experience to me! At studio level, well my studio level, I need to be thinking about proximity to my monitors, but even then, I can generally coax some feedback when I need it. Not like standing in front of a stack, but then I’ve not used a stack in a long time. Try a semi acoustic. I found that to be thrill seeking!
  8. This is very typical for this type of forum. What most people do is upload to YouTube - you can leave it only visible for people with the link - then you just link that. Simple!
  9. Let's just start at the beginning - you having this totally wrong! HXFX can have lots of effects - limited only by DSP (memory) Maybe you've got confused with the stomp? or the Pod Go? But you can set up lots of presets and get to them easily, so you can have a pile of different effects in the next preset. It's like you have 100's of pedal boards - each built for a particular song if you like. Each preset is essentially a new pedalboard of whatever effects you might want limited only by DSP - that could be 14 or more effects in just that one preset. Next preset might have 12 effects - none of which were in the last preset. And so on. So unless you want to turn on every one of these at the same time, you are thinking it in the wrong way. So look at the Line 6 page on it and rethink the whole of what you have tried to work out here.
  10. What EQ to use is up to you. The high and low cuts on the IR or Cab are where I start. I personally like the Cali Q for a bit more tuning as I find the frequencies well placed for tonal sculpting. (not as the main cuts though - not what it's designed for) But sometimes, I'm feeling like I need to hone in on more specific frequencies............which might be the 10 band or the parametric. So I'm cutting top and bottom and then tuning after that. I also have a basic set of cuts in my Global EQ too - but a lot of people here will say your global EQ is for room tuning. I never room tune - but then, I'm using 2 wedges in stereo pointing straight at me and if there is a bit of bass boom (a definite problem on some stages), there are bass and treble control on the wedges - and I just tweak that - therefore FOH always gets the same sound (I don't leave anything to FOH - they are asked to start flat and then adjust where necessary - but that's the only place to tune a room I think). Anyhow, there are lots of ways to skin a cat - you make your own decisions!
  11. I will just point to the comment about low and high cuts - the minute you start limiting the frequency response to a typical guitar amp and speaker range, it all comes together. I personally drastically cut everything below 100Hz and above 5.5KHz. With that as my base setup, I can still get what people would call a "glassy" strat. Smooth, but bright. You can obviously try that and then back some of that off if you feel I go too far.......I like to keep well out of Bass and big keys if you like your bass well up on a Marshall, you might not like 100Hz - but 70 or 80Hz is still capable of giving you lots of bottom (I'd say too much!) and 7Khz I'd call sizzle that's too edgy for my liking - the more high frequency, the worse distortion sounds.
  12. rvroberts

    Wah tone

    Another way to do this is with a parametric EQ. You can make all the “half cocked “ tones you like with a parametric.
  13. WELL, JUST MATCHING SOME SETTINGS IS NOT LIKELY TO PRODUCE THE SAME SOUND. (not shouting - just left caps lock on!) Even if you had exactly the same guitar and exactly the same amp speaker combination and DI'd with the Two Notes Torpedo with the same marshal cab IR, pots on these things have wide tolerances so it's not that simple. You have a parametric EQ - but you can't expect the knob positions to mean exactly what they show - they are also pots - potentiometers - and they are analog devices with probably about 20% variation across the batch. So it will be a starting point - you will need to use your ears. And the 6 band.....well you have the 5 band Mesa EQ........ But at the end of the day - these are just a batch or EQs - it's totally possible to get this effect without all this EQ. He's mostly scooped the mids on the amp. He's then added a mid boost in a smooth curve on the MXR 6 band - pretty much undoing the amp setting - maybe even resulting in a slight mid boost. Then he seems on the parametric EQ to be boosting a narrow bit of lows - no way to be precise about that - but maybe 100hz - but not a lot. Some mids at maybe 800Khz - a fair bit but with a wider Q - I'd just call that another mid boost And the highs at maybe 3.5K again with a wide curve - call that an upper mid/highs boost. But what he's really doing with that para is - he has the gain all the way up - so he's using it mostly as a big gain knob. The thing to note on the 10 band he's cut 1K drastically and the 800hz a noticable bit - kind of undoing the mid some of the boost of the Parametric and the 6 band. (that 1K cut might be the one thing to take out of this) So if he's really achieving much with all this it's about gain boost and probably introducing some weird phase distortion due to all the cuts and boosts working against each other. I'd not be trying to copy that personally! The result sounds thin to me - which is what you get when you strangle your tone like that.
  14. So I’m not actually answering your question. but I just thought I’d point out that you only need to accidentally hit that button once and you have no way to recover. You would at least want a one back button? just in case.
  15. So why wouldn't you go for the HXFX? It's designed for what you want to do.
  16. HX FX. Designed for people who just want effects but want to program everything. You can even have other pedals in the effects send/return and you can run your delays etc into your FX return on your amp if you have one - so you can decide what goes into the front of the amp and what goes into FX return. - per preset! Sounds like everything you just asked for.
  17. Don't get confused - Amp in the room is a different conversation. We are talking about the fact that human ears hear differently at volume - a proven fact! A nice full sound at low volume will be boomy and probably muddy while possibly having harsh tops too! If you like your current gear - spend a few dollars in a rehearsal studio at live volume. If good sound matters to you - and yes, makes you feel good playing - then do it loud! - well however loud you guys play. (preferably with your band - sitting in with the other instruments while being heard is also part of the puzzle.
  18. Well I’m afraid I have bad news for you. there is only one way to set up sounds for playing at volume, and that is by playing at volume. Now, using an FRFR system will be closer than running tube amp quiet and then loud, at least the simulation of running the amp at volume will be closer to to the same experience, but there is enough difference to still cause big problems. I have a lot of experience doing this now, and can get a 80% result setting up sounds at home at low volume. But the final EQ is still only possible at volume. And because of that, other effects like say the Q of a wah also needs tweaking. Even the clarity/ability to hear individual notes in a overdriven sound seems to vary based on actual volume. I’ve actually changed amp sims sometimes because I find the mud can be different at volume. So bad news for you. Setting up tones at volume is the only way to get it right. With experience, you might get closer ~ but you will still find you need to tweak.
  19. I honestly think this line of thinking is totally misdirected. Just because you can get a unit that can do the job of a batch of pedals doesn't make it a good choice for a facility with a lot of very different users. You can use it as a full system into FRFR (the PA potentially) or just as effects in front of an amp. But!!! The learning curve is definitely not for everyone, and not for the casual user. If you've never used a Helix before, and you turn up for a rehearsal, the rest of the band will probably kill you while you stumble around totally lost, wasting their time, and failing to get good sounds. The great flexibility comes with the disadvantage that these devices require setup. Setup specific to the requirements of the user and song. I doubt there is a Helix user who didn't need at least a few days before they had a basic kit of sounds - and they were absolutely bound to be totally aware that they were just at the start of their journey! As an experienced user, I'd never turn up to rehearsal with a blank canvas - just adjusting a sound to work at band volume (maybe 5 mins of total fiddling) drives my band members mad! I absolutely think effects in general are a black hole you should not enter. A classic Fender amp or maybe one of the amps that have like 4 or5 sound types - clean/crunch/lead/metal type - on a knob is as far into that territory as I'd go. Anyone who cares about their sound will bring a pedal board or their own multi effects unit - don't try to solve that for them - you totally can't!
  20. OK - we find a few problems with Line 6 and updates - and it's improved dramatically since the start I have to say - but still plenty of room for improvements. We have computers to make life easy.........well at least that's a possibility!! So smart programming tries to do that - why have a computer and do all the work yourself? (Helix is a computer!) I actually think most upgrades could keep global settings - but there might be the occasional time where software/firmware improvements need a backup and install of globals. Again it's something a computer is good at - better than people generally. So I suspect what is really going on is Line 6, when designing the OS and hardware for the Helix did not want to allow space for all that storing if information while replacing stuff in upgrades - so they moved some of those jobs to the user. It's a compromise. Probably let them give us more bang for the buck, as far as memory goes while needing us to do a bit more work administering the update process. Unfortunately, Helix knowhow is acquired over time, and there's always stuff that catches the new user out. That's why there is always a long (and a bit frightening for first time users) set of "How to" notes with every upgrade. All this could be potentially handled by really good update software(Mac andWindows versions)........but that's resources being used to write and test stuff that we can do manually - so they leave it to us, and it always results in long chains of "I bricked my Helix" or "everything sounds bad after update" "No sound on XLRs" type of discussions.
  21. Well, where you suggest after the amp is a perfectly fine place to put it. But in general, the reason you connect into your amp effects loop is to keep delay and reverb effects as clean as possible. In the Helix, while you could duplicate your live chain (well close with what you suggest) more likely you'd do what you would do in the recording studio - which is place those effects after the amp, speakers and mic - that is after the speakers/IRs. Then your Big Sky can really sparkle with absolutely no limitation of amp and speaker colouration. Naturally, you might like that colouration......... so back to plan A. But try it last in the chain and think about some EQ if it's a bit "in your face" and bright. Think like you are in a big studio where those effects are probably applied on the desk with outboard gear.
  22. Actually, it's always been the case, but it's a bit annoying! Is there a real reason?
  23. Well assuming every setting is identical, then it should sound identical. I've done similar reorganisations myself, and not noticed a difference - but I can't say I A/B'd them to test. You have been careful regarding same speakers/mic placement? - and the cabs are in the same places? No pedal assignments (except the volume). The volume is the same profile? If so, you have discovered a bug I'd say. Be worth just placing the amp and cabs (no other units in the paths) in path one and path 2 and seeing if there is a noticeable difference? A simple test I've never done. Then if it was identical, you could slowly rebuild and see if you can find where it's coming from?
  24. I'm surprised you don't know AC30s don't have FX loops,.....
  25. rvroberts


    Have you thought of connecting your Helix directly to your DAW via USB? It might appear that you can only have one Audio device at a time, but at least in theory, you can create an Aggregate CoreAudio device. Not tried it personally - this info is Mac specific - I've heard it's not as easy on Windows.........but I'd be googling that!
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