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HonestOpinion

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  1. HonestOpinion

    L6 Link cable availability issues

    Any AES/EBU cable with XLR plugs should work. You don't have to buy one from Line6. Also a regular XLR cable will usually work in a pinch, just use as short a one as you can get away with.
  2. HonestOpinion

    Snapshots= instant ???

    Snapshots is also the only way to get the Trails parameter option working on your delays and reverbs. Just turn the 'Trails' parameter on in the delay/reverb block. Unless you absolutely require a preset switch snapshots are definitely the way to go. Near zero latency and trails.
  3. HonestOpinion

    I Love My HX Stomp... But My Bandmate Doesn't

    I think I remember the posts and presets you are referring to. Definitely a great effort by that individual but something that adjusted automatically on the fly would be ideal. Not expecting to see something like this anytime soon if at all. As rd2rk and brue58ski mention to make it automatic would probably require a properly calibrated mic setup such as the ones used for "pinking" a room anyway. The whole idea is to make things easier so that would have to be a dirt simple process.
  4. HonestOpinion

    I Love My HX Stomp... But My Bandmate Doesn't

    Wouldn't it be grand to have a "Fletcher-Munson" block that automatically compensated the EQ so that a patch sounded roughly the same at any volume? Sort of a much more sophisticated version of what a "Loudness" button attempts to do. I could see something like this coming around eventually. It would make patches easier to design at lower volumes and more predictable moving them from design phase to stage. A real ear saver.
  5. HonestOpinion

    Helix Firmware 2.80

    Agree 100%. This might already be in place but best case scenario, development and QA testing are bound at the hip like Siamese twins. Ideally when a new feature gets added to the product, it should also get added to an automated test harness that includes all prior functionality. This product line is way too complex at this point to expect alpha/beta testers to catch everything manually.
  6. HonestOpinion

    IR length discussion

    Very much agree that these small changes accumulate and can sometimes become substantial. I like to see the big changes keep coming as well. My interests definitely align with IR creators, as well as musicians who have produced a recording, in that I want to see their creative output as well as my own rendered and delivered with the maximum quality possible as it was intended. All of that has to happen unfortunately within the reality of cost constraints which is why I am always happy to see storage and processing costs go down while their capabilities increase.
  7. HonestOpinion

    NEW HELIX OWNER 5/16/19

    YouTube videos are your friend right now along with the manual. Below are a couple of links for a list of Helix videos from Line6. Just jumping into a preset and poking around the Editor or the device itself will be eye-opening. The Helix interface is highly intuitive up to a point. After that the videos, manual, and forum can be very helpful. In answer to your question, when you download a preset such as "King Of Tone" from the Downloads page it is composed of references to blocks/effects that are already loaded in your Helix as rd2rk mentioned. Think of a preset as containing the pointers to various blocks on your device, their settings, and other crucial info such as routing, I/O, etc.. Also you want to be updated to the latest editor/firmware version in general but definitely if you are going to start downloading presets that may refer to effects or amps that were not yet in earlier firmware versions. https://line6.com/helix/resources.html
  8. HonestOpinion

    IR length discussion

    Probably belaboring the issue but these videos and the comments here were definitely educational. Unfortunately as usual just like in the Helix versus Fractal tests I find differences hard to detect on my PC speakers. It appears that for many players the difference between the shorter and longer IRs will be imperceptible. Then there is the point Pete Thorn makes in his video that some of the data contained in the longer IRs such as early reflections is arguably better controlled with a reverb block, implying that a longer IR, at least in this respect, may not be more desirable anyway. On the other side of the debate as referred to earlier in this topic is sort of the Neil Young point about .mp3s which is that listeners have unfortunately gotten used to hearing lossy, less than optimal versions of music such that they no longer even detect, know, or care about the difference. The tyranny of low expectations. Part of that argument is that even though many people can't tell the difference in an A/B test, that there is an adverse cumulative effect over time from listening to lossy signals that is almost subconscious. A lot of people think that is BS though or at least not worth the extra cost and hardware resources to remedy. Good as they sound already IR development and capture is still an evolving art/science and I think many of us have no doubt IRs will sound even better in another five years and not just due to larger IR files. Doesn't seem like the technology has quite topped out yet (if ever). In these situations I always look forward to that point where affordable technology strikes the best compromise with optimal configuration and sound. Ultimately though, like so many other incremental or sometimes infinitesimal improvements, although the optimal provides us with a goalpost to work towards, getting caught up in or concerned about it as @cruisinon2 points out may ultimately just detract from the creative process or your enjoyment of the equipment.
  9. HonestOpinion

    oops.... I bought an Axe FX III.... but...

    Yup, you just can't stress this enough. The more people contributing new ideas and new technology as well as generating price competition the better.
  10. HonestOpinion

    IR length discussion

    In many ways this whole discussion reminds me of the difference between listening to an .mp3 versus a .wav file. Lossy compressed file formats provide the potential to store much larger numbers of songs while offering a compromise in quality that most listeners find acceptable. The .mp3 uses a "lossy" algorithm that uses compression algorithms to determine where there is redundant data as well as which data can be dropped with minimal impact. This is roughly akin to the choices for IR length made by device manufacturers. Right now most IRs are in essence rendered/truncated by a lossy algorithm when loaded into a modeler. The extent of the data loss is determined to some extent by the max IR length. By contrast a .wav file is lossless and retains more audio data. The .wav file format still remains the gold standard in many respects. That gold standard also includes formats that can provide compression and max audio quality such as .ogg(can be lossless when compressed with FLAC) and Neil Young's efforts with FLAC files. The equivalent gold standard for an IR would be one that allowed longer IR lengths. That does not appear to be cost-effective at the moment as the resultant improvement in sound is simply not substantial enough for many users and device manufacturers. They would prefer those resources be used elsewhere where they perceive more bang for the buck. Manufacturers and consumers pick their compromises based on current hardware/cost constraints for storage space and processing resources. On a computer, if you are an audiophile, you can throw in a five terabyte hard drive to store .wav or .ogg files, as well as more RAM and a faster CPU but that is generally not an option on a modeling device. Modeling devices tend to have a fixed limit on storage and DSP. As others have pointed out qualitative differences for live applications are going to be more difficult to detect whereas studio applications can be more demanding and qualitative differences in sound may be more pronounced. Different users have different priorities based on their focus, ears, and how they will be using their gear. So, would I love to have a device that allowed 200ms+ IRs? Sure, why not. Not however at the cost of way fewer IRs, processing bottlenecks and glitches, and/or a potentially substantially higher price tag. Rock & roll and guitar sounds are a totally different animal from Hi-Fidelity. I am not looking for my guitar sound to mimic a $3000 stereo. Horrors! I am however definitely interested in an IR format that does a better job of capturing all the low-fi details, quirks, decay characteristics, woody greatness, etc. of a top notch guitar cabinet. If getting there requires that we allow a longer max IR length I say bring it on. I'm not gonna be sitting around wringing my hands until it comes but I see no point in discouraging it either. If, as it appears, there truly is significant data in the average IR beyond the approximately 40ms max length provided by Helix I will welcome a higher limit in the next Helix hardware generation. For now this thing still sounds great and has many strengths in other areas that competing devices lack.
  11. HonestOpinion

    IR length discussion

    Interesting video @MLSoundLabthanks for posting. One question I have is "How consistent is the duration of meaningful and audible information across IRs created by different sources?". If most people are creating cab IRs where there is still significant data contained in the first 80ms, as the video above indicates, then it would appear to me that that is an ideal minimum starting point for manufacturers to set the max length of an IR. If the above observation is consistent across the bulk of the IRs intended for guitar, any multi-effect or DAW striving to provide maximum quality sound and authenticity from an IR should probably plan on allowing at least 80ms. Resolution matters right up to the point at which it is no longer audible, or in the case of visual media up until it is no longer visible. For example 4k television clearly provides a superior image to lower HD formats and we certainly shouldn't have stopped developing TVs before we reached that because "the image was good enough". I have to assume that the same applies, perhaps to a less dramatic extent, in the audio realm with longer IRs. I don't think this is a slippery slope. The time to stop development is when you can no longer perceive a meaningful or positive difference. Although there is a point of diminishing returns where the perceptible changes to audio or sound are not significant or too expensive, this change to an 80ms capacity does not sound like one of those. RAM and DSP are getting cheaper and faster all the time. I won't beat around the bush, it would appear to me that shooting for longer max IR lengths like the Fractal's Ultra-Res standard is worthwhile. At least as demonstrated by this video. Longer IR times are also demonstrably more desirable for non guitar amp/cab IRs such as those made for reverb.
  12. HonestOpinion

    Weird hum issue, can be cut via USB

    You may have already tried this but try plugging in and mixing and matching devices split across two different outlets/circuits.
  13. HonestOpinion

    HX Stomp - Can Plugging In Headphones Mute the Line Outs ?

    The Global --> 'Ins/Outs' --> 'Volume Controls' parameter will select which outputs you want the Volume knob to control. It can control the 1/4 output and headphones("Main+HP") or only the headphones("Phones"). Unfortunately the 1/4 outputs remain at unity gain when this parameter is set to 'Phones'. I can definitely see where adding a headphones parameter option that muted the 1/4 outputs might be helpful in certain setups. Line6 may have figured that if you are going to use your headphones you won't have an amp on. Don't know how it would impact the headphone sound but another simple solution would be an in-line volume control for your headphones like the ones below from Amazon. Unlike the mixer solution rd2k recommended you might have to disconnect or turn down/off your monitors/'guitar amp' depending on your rig setup. The 1/4 model is made by Koss and they make decent headphones so their volume control might be worth a look. Both models are less than $10. https://www.amazon.com/Koss-155954-VC20-Volume-Control/dp/B00001P4XH?ref_=fsclp_pl_dp_1 https://www.amazon.com/Stellar-Labs-1013015470-Control-Headphones/dp/B008DJTB32
  14. HonestOpinion

    Helix LT broken EXP pedal for the second time

    Good on Line6 for owning up to and taking care of customers afflicted by the units involved in the faulty manufacturing run. I can understand the frustration of anyone who has had to deal with it though. Better those things don't happen in the first place but you gotta hand it to Line6 for taking care of their customers. I've had plenty of stuff that broke in a weak spot and all too many times where the manufacturer took no responsibility. I know this topic is primarily dealing with the LT but personally I have always found that although engaging the Helix's toe switch is not a big problem, it does take more force to press than I prefer or think it should require. It stands to reason that some of the extra weight/force applied to switching will get distributed to the hinged area in the middle of the pedal - Physics 101. If that assembly is over-engineered then that may never result in a failure. If it is under-engineered or defective it is likely going to fail sooner rather than later. Even if it never breaks I would imagine the bearings and assembly are taking more of a beating over time than they would with a switch that clicked more easily. IMHO they should make the switch activation easier or better yet adjustable. I had the Digitech IPB-10 pedalboard a few years ago and it had a digital parameter setting that was able to adjust how hard you needed to press the toe switch. What an elegant solution to control the expression pedal's analog physical toe switch with a digital preference. Not sure exactly how they did that although I have a theory but IMHO it is a superior solution to any other I have seen. Wish more manufacturers would adopt it. Btw, my theory on how it worked was that it was a progressive pressure switch inside of a rubber sleeve that acted more like a potentiometer than an on/off switch. It engaged quite easily when the pedal was depressed toe-down. The rubber around the switch would provide more resistance(physical not electrical) as it was stepped on and compressed. This switch type made the switching digitally adjustable which meant you could set it to how hard you needed to stomp before it engaged.Picture the button on old refrigerators that depressed into a sleeve and shut off the fridge light as you closed its door. The digital setting on the Digitech probably selected at which point in the switch's travel the switch was engaged. Just a theory though, could turn out to be a completely different method. Never took it apart or took a good look to see how they did it but it worked perfectly. It makes sense that this ability to reduce the force required to activate the toe-switch might prolong its life along with some of the other expression pedal parts.
  15. HonestOpinion

    Main Guitar

    You say you have a $2,000+ budget. That covers a lot of potential ground. I know it is all is all relative and for some players nothing less than a $5,000+ custom guitar will fill the bill but for the rest of us I would say you have enough money to easily buy one, two or even three great guitars if you look around. Particularly if you are willing to buy used. Although I love USA made guitars there are so many relatively inexpensive high quality guitars coming from other locales, particularly out of Korea now, e.g. some of the PRS models. There is an embarrassment of riches out there.The Variax is incredibly flexible and does everything from banjo, Strat, Les Paul to twelve string, however with your budget, that would be my second or third guitar unless you prefer the way the Variax plays. From your original post it sounds like you like Classic Rock and Blues. There are a couple of ways you can go with this. If you want everything in one guitar and find yourself consistently preferring a strat type guitar and only occasionally wanting that thicker more metal humbucker sound I think cruisinon2 nailed it, find yourself a great HSS Strat like a Fender, ESP or other, and be done with it. Suhr makes some great flexible strat type models, but they tend to list closer to $3000 than $2000 brand new. Another way to go would be to buy two guitars, a single coil model and a humucker model, the classic examples of that being a Strat and a Les Paul but there are infinite variations and so many great copycats and innovative alternatives now. Certain kinds of body types and hardware seem to me to just get a better sound with single or dual coil pickups and no amount of mixed pickup configurations on one guitar will get you the best of both worlds although some guitars come close. I have an old USA made PRS that does a pretty respectable job of covering most bases and spares me having to carry both a single and dual coil guitar but I find that particularly when it comes to single coil sounds nothing but a legit Strat or Tele type guitar quite nails that sound. I am shallow enough to care about the name on my headstock but the truth is you can find great and inexpensive Mexican made Strats and fantastic Epiphone Pauls if you look. Players like Jack White managed to have a successful career with some of the cheapest axes ever made. Another option would be to spend most of your budget on a great HSS or single coil that nails the lion share of your songs and a cheaper guitar with humbuckers for your occasional forays into other material . Whatever you get just make sure it sounds and plays great. Your options are many and your budget gives you a fair degree of flexibility.
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