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Posts posted by Doug6String

  1. Thanks for the post!  I've been a bedroom rockstar even longer than you and realized the tuning issue long ago and have compensated by ear over the years.  This is a (potentially) great Helix feature I wasn't aware of (there's a manual?! :)).  I'll try your settings and may have to buy a strobe tuner!

  2. My go to approach is to use the dual delay and have a 30 ms offset for one path and pan one R and the other L.  And like "J" said above, I have some other stereo effects after my IR/cab (more delay, verb, etc.).  This gives a really nice full sound for jamming and some recording.

  3. Wow - thanks!  I really enjoyed that and have a new "trick" to try since I have a Godin with piezos and humbuckers.  I was around when their first record came out (what a great paint job on that guitar!) and first heard it when my friend's older brother were playing it.  It was out there!

  4. BLUF (bottom line up front) - for any IR packs, try starting with a 421 and an R121 together.  It gets you the highs and lows.  For OH, try a 421 at "0" with an R121 somewhere between "5-10" depending on the sound you want.  That's my baseline for new IRs.


    I love discussing IRs, so here I go.


    The particular IRs you settle on will certainly be determined to a sig extent on the sound you want, the amps you're using, etc.  But it was RedWirez that really EDUCATED me.  They recommend a few diff mics and few diff mic settings (mic placements), which I suggested above (their guide is easy to find).  I used that as a starting point in all the IR packs I buy.  For me, combining a 421 with an R121 gives an excellent middle of the road sound I use all the time regardless of which company made the IRs.  And just this last week I got my Fender amp out of the closet (haven't really used since I bought the POD 20 or so years ago), and I found the two mics I bought about 40 years ago (a Shure and an AKG) and I did some tests on how they sound and compared that to the Helix with cabs and IRs.  Working with IRs has significantly helped me understand how to mic amps (yeah, I know this is backwards!) and Kudos to line 6 and all the IR makers.  They did a good job of modeling real life behavior using mics and amps.  All just based on my ears and preferences - no science here.


    I hesitate to even put this on the Forum, but because I have the time, I have compared IRs by recording the identical guitar setup and just changing the IRs and then listening for the differences.  I've been a guitar player nearly 50 years with the last 30 spent in my "home studio" so I know what I like.  For me, just my opinion, IRs fall into 2 categories - I like the sound or I don't.  Below I focus on IRs that I like.  The ones I don't like jump out right away.  Like Zooey said above, I bought 3 Sigma, but I'm not a fan.


    In the case where I like the sound (I use OwnHammer and RedWirez), I compared, for example, OH 1 and 2,  MDRN, and PROG, to a 421 coupled with a 121, and others in the OH Core tone bundle, and the difference in sound is negligible in the cases where I like the sound.  There is an obvious difference between a "0" and a "10".  But to everyone that reads this - this is true for my set up.  I can see where you might find big differences where I didn't because of the effects you use, or a diff amp, etc.  I used the Interstate Zed with a clean sound, and with the mic preamp and Scream 808.  And I also compared OH speakers (the Core Tone has 3 diff speaker options which further complicates things).  I can hear some differences, but they are not sig enough that I would definitely want to use one speaker over another.  While sounding diff, they all sounded good.  I also have the OH Heavy Hitters and I think one speaker seemed a bit smoother with extreme dist so I settled on that one.


    My point is that there is less of a difference between the IRs in a set than we might expect, except for a couple outliers.  I've even compared mics (all the SM57 type mics, for example).  Again, the diff is small enough that I end up back where I started, which is, a 421 with a 121 gives me a nice, versatile sound to build on to.


    So for the OH Core tone, I recommend trying their OH 1 and 2 and MDRN, combining "0" with something in the "5-10" range, based on the sound you want.  And try combining a 421 "0" with an R121 "5-10", again, depending on the sound you want.  Of course picking the "right" amp as the foundation is critical!  Even if you listen and think, "these do sound a little different," I doubt you'll say one is definitely great and the other isn't.  They're just diff.

  5. Wow - great EP!  I find and get a lot of music from Bandcamp so I'm glad to see you there. Great writing, playing, and tones!  I can't say I'm surprised you got such a great variety of tones using the Helix, but you did a great job creating a wide variety of tones to meet what the songs wanted.  Congrats!  Of course I'm the kiss of death.  If I like your music you'll be poor...sorry!

  6. Hi Joe - I bought and use RedWirez, OwnHammer and 3 Sigma IRs after trying the freebies and have never experienced what you described. Others will weigh in with more technical details, but I've read about IRs issues, including cutting off, when you don't use the right "length." For Helix, 48k Hz and 200 ms IRs are recommended (maybe required - I forget). There is one phase issue I've read about if you combine IRs from different creators, but I regularly combine RedWirez, which are a little thinner sounding to enhance the highs, with OwnHammer, which are deeper. I've never heard the phase issue other refer to.

  7. DunedinDragon - great observation!  I'm in the middle, so I'm lacking both sets of skills!  I haven't played live for 20 years and in my home recording for the past decades, because of work, wife, kids... I didn't play much and never developed the recording skills I need now with the newest tech.  IRs (incl Helix Cabs) have really helped me begin to understand mics and placement and the impact on sound.  I just said this in another post, but Helix gives "too many" options.  For me, the result was that I initially screwed up more of my sound than I should have and this Forum straightened me out.  I'm on the right learning path now and am improving my tone and recording techniques weekly, which gets back to your post.  I absolutely agree with your suggestion on new people and learning about recording, which applies to me.  I don't know about using a Helix live, but if your a home recording"artist" like me, unless you want to use the helix like a simple effects pedal, this takes some serious time and effort to really understand and control the Helix.  And I'll add one last thing - having someone else you trust listen to what you do and provide feedback is essential.  Just last night a colleague from this forum send me some example recordings using one of my fav presets (my creation) and I realized I have been hurting my tone with too much EQ.  I couldn't hear that in my own playing, but when someone else used my patch and showed me the issue, it really jumped out!

  8. only one thing for me really.. the valve driver

    has anyone ever used it and been happy with it? i tried it a few times and it just seems to make everything sound harsh and bad

    I'm amazed there's only one thing!  I use the valve driver for jamming and I like it.  But I don't record with it (too "messy").  I like the Minotaur and Scream 808, sometimes with the mic preamp to get a smoother or crunchy tone for recording.  My biggest complaint with the Helix would be there are too many options (great prob to have)!  I'm a rock/metal player and I use less than half the dist pedals and even fewer of the other effects.  It really depends on the tone/sound you want (obviously).

  9. Grin, no problem for me, I have all the slots filled. No pesky empty slots, just wish I had more of them available.  :)

    I think a lot of us are out of slots!  While I've been working on IR management this holiday weekend (finding and removing those I'm not using) I used RedWirez MixIR for the first time.  You can combine multiple IRs into a single file.  I've got some IRs I frequently use in presets (diff mics/cabs) and I've gone in and created single files for them.  This is opening up IR slots (not that I need to buy more) but it's also showed me how many IRs I have that I'm not even using anymore!  And it frees up a little more DSP having 2 IRs in a single file, although I don't recall how DSP intensive IRs are.

  10. Everyone must be working or sleeping – I expect this question will generate a lot of responses from the experts and they will ask you a lot of detailed questions since what your asking depends on every aspect of what your using.  I’m still new but I went from total disappointment to loving the Helix and I use dist a lot (I’m a rock guy), so I think you’ll end up like me (happy).

    Here’s my quick, high-level experience.  I use EQ before the amp and again at the end of my signal chain.  This shapes my tone and is essential for me.  Amp selection and settings also make a big diff, of course.  Some amps have a nice crunch tone that works well with the dist pedals and others are better starting with a clean tone.  I can tell you what I use, but every person here has another opinion and results may vary!

    I don’t think you’ll find the “simple†thing you’re missing.  It’s everything together.  This forum talks a lot about the needed high (3-5 kHz) and low cuts (100 Hz).  The high cut in particular is essential for me.  I use the cuts in my IR settings (I don’t use many cabs but cab vs IR doesn’t change my dist sound too much) and with my EQ before and after the amp.

    For me, there isn’t a single factory preset I use as is, and early on I bought some and don’t use those either.  Others have a diff experience with presets, but this is mine based on my equipment and ears.  None sound like what I want.  My main guitars are a PRS and Ultra Strat and I listen with Bose headphones so I plug my guitar into the Helix, into a Steinberg UR44, to my Windows laptop, which sounds similar to you.

    For me, there are a few dist pedals that I use and I use some at the same time – this works pretty well.  The other thing I do is I have an inexpensive preamp in my send/rtn.  This is the only thing I have outside the Helix for sound shaping.  This gives me a really nice crunch without a dist pedal and when used with a dist pedal, I can get a lot of variations up to super overdriven.  I don’t think this is essential to have, but I like it.  

  11. Since my last post was wrong, I just double checked this so Zooey won't have to correct me again!  Using the editor in Windows, put the mouse cursor on the setlist name you want to change and HOLD the lift button down for a couple seconds and then you can change it.  I kept double clicking the first time!

  12. In a post last week, I put this comment "Snapshots work well if you're turning things on and off (you can't have diff settings for a single device in diff snapshots)..."  Someone thought the "can't have different settings" was a typo, but it wasn't.  I hope I'm wrong, but my experience is that if I have, for example, a Scream 808 that I use in snapshots 1 and 2, I can't have different settings for it in both snapshots.  I've tried this a few different ways, but when I save the preset, whether I save it when on snapshot 1 or 2, only the last settings for the dist pedal are saved and those settings are then the same for all snapshots, thus in snapshots I can turn things on and off, bu that's the extent of the control.  Am I missing a way to have multiple snapshots with the same effects with different settings for the effects in diff snapshots?  Thanks!

  13. I certainly agree with Zooey - you have to create your music in the environment you want it heard.  I listen to all my music with headphones so I create it the same way and I'm happy with the sound.  I have been doing home recording since I bought my Teac 4 track a very long time ago.  I use Mixcraft now, but I've used an audio interface for a long time rather than directly recording the Helix.  I use a Steinberg UR44 now.  The benefit of this is controlling the input and output signals.  

    I finally have the time to really start to explore mixing and mastering so I bought Ozone 7 and Neutron and have been doing a lot of video watching and reading on mixing, mastering, and how to get good sounding songs on Soundcloud and YouTube, although I've never put my music on either (I'm curious). There's a real art to that and has an awful lot to do with proper EQ, compression and using the maximizer right so their processing of the track doesn't ruin the song sound.

    I'm at the early stage of exploring the details of the art of mastering, but I'm pretty jazzed about what I have done with my own music.  If you are interested, you can send me a track your working on and a track that has the sound you're looking for, and I'll play around with with.  I don't know if I can do anything useful, but I'm interested in working on some music other than my own, just for the experience.  You can email me at my profile.

  14. So I guess I'm still a newbie having had my Helix just a couple months, but I've learned a ton through my mistakes and this forum to fix them.  The cuts to highs and lows are well documented here, but I think most of us would recommend doing that for each preset rather than global EQ settings.  I started out like that and found I was always changing the global EQ so I turned that off and typically use an EQ before my helix amp and another at the end of the signal chain.  Once set - it's set.  You'll hear that the glbal EQ is good for adapting to the "room" you play in (live gigging, for example).


    The other thing I learned was to be excessive in backing up my presets.  I export the bundle, setlist AND and export every new preset I create that I like to a folder so I have each one if needed.  I had a major malfunction early on and lost a bunch of presets I made and I think it was something goofy I did, and never did again.


    I only use headphones so others have an impressive knowledge of FRFRs you'll hear.  


    Along with clean, I use crunch to heavy distortion and found that using two Dist pedals at once can give some dist tones you may not get otherwise.  


    On a recommendation here, I bought a cheap (50 buck) tube preamp and have that set up with send/rtn and that gives some really nice crunch and overdrive with Dist pedals.  I found it easy to run out of DSP until I started using both paths.  I'm looking at one of my presets now - I have send/rtn, Dyn, 3 Dist pedals, EQ an amp, 2 IRs, and this feeds into path 2 where I have 2 delays, Verb, 3 volume/gain pedals, and another EQ.  Snapshots work well if you're turning things on and off (you can't have diff settings for a single device in diff snapshots) and that's why I use 3 gain pedals, to have consistent volume for the 7 snapshots I have in this preset.  


    I think you'll hear "there are no rules - try everything."  I found a few amps that give me a great clean sound and few that give me crunch and dist and I haven't varied much outside these amps, although I have a lot of IRs I use.  There are, frankly, too may amp/cab/IR/ pedal/etc. options and it's easy to never actually play!


    Welcome to the Forum and have fun with all the replies you'll get on this!  I look forward to seeing what every says.

    • Upvote 1
  15. Very nice!  I see what you mean on maybe not needing an acoustic sim.  Among my many, I have a Godin that only use with a Roland GR20 synth to add color to my music, but the Godin has piezos and is set up to sound like an acoustic (it's OK, not great).  I may try that with that Taylor IRs for fun.  I did download them - thanks.

  16. IRs are a topic I love, but others might be sick of it. I'm still a Helix newbie at about 2 months owning one and I didn't know what an IR was until buying the Helix. I'll check out the first two you you listed since I already have the others. I'm in the group that definitely thinks using IRs gives a better sound than the stock Helix cabs(IRs), although I have a couple presets I made with Helix cabs to get a specific sound (a bit darker). I'm a fan of the RedWires IRs. I also bought OwnHammer and 3Sigma and downloaded a ton from links on this Forum. RedWires has a free Marshall set of IRs you can try, and I liked that and bought a bunch more. Many find ear fatigue going through the zillion options they provide, so I read their instructions and so far have mostly used their recommended mics, distances and pairings. For my ears, their recommendations cover the tones I can get using most of their other IRs (for a particular speaker and cab) with diff mics and distances, based on some direct comparisons I did, solely by my pref. A sound I really like and use a lot is using their Fender Twin IRs (SM57 for more high end) with an Engle IR (R121, I think, for more low end). I use this paring with the Interstate Zed (with tweaked settings) as a baseline for my clean sound. It's all so subjective but the number of options with the Helix and IRs is amazing and I have the time to explore that, so it's great fun!

  17. I use this effect a lot during jamming to get that big sound. I get it using the dual stereo delay (it's near the top of the delay lsit - I might have the exact name wrong). I'd have to look at settings, but I think I have the left or right delay set to zero and the other one set to about 30 ms. Then pan the sound hard right and hard left in the delay settings. I don't think I adjust anything else. And turn off chorus if you want. The default seems to be on. If you need all the specific settings I use, let me know and I'll send them. This works great and is really simple. And, of course, I learned it from someone else on this forum!

  18. This is truly entertaining. I have a strong opinion on the topic, but what's the point of one more! This thread does point out difficulty with all the requests for what IRs to use, what monitors , headphones, etc., are best. I have amazing tones I love with my helix and I suspect if many of you used them with your setup, you'd think I was insane. Many of you regulars have pointed this out in many posts and that helped me manage my expectations when I first got my Helix.

    • Upvote 1
  19. I'm an IR fan and have RedWirez, OwnHamnmer and 3Sigma.  I started out by trying their free IRs, which is how I ended up buying theirs, so I recommend that.  This site has links to download a lot of IRs, which I did and never looked at (too many to try!). To my ears, the different companies have a distinctly different overarching flavor, even for similar cabs and mics so the specific IRs you choose will really depend on the sound you want.  So - try the free ones to narrow down what sounds good to you.  Good luck!

  20. The tech aspect is pretty impressive (real time, 3 cities) but great job on the music!  I'm not interested in emulating your specific sound, but I am still a newbie and am interested in how others do things so I can expand how I do things.  If your willing to post of pic of your Helix signal chains, I'd be interested.  If not, no biggie.  Again, nice job on the music!  Doug 

  21. Hey Ron – I know you asked for videos.  I spent a lot of time watching them on YouTube and reading this Forum and I really didn’t get it until I started creating my own patches and sculpting my sound based on Forum advice.  I’ve had the helix about 7 weeks now and this forum took me from dispair to ecstasy, which is why I follow it looking for other newbies I might help. 


    I was new to IRs too and I searched this site and found links to download a zillion (literally so many I haven’t even tried a small %).  For my taste, they sound really alive compared to what I get tweaking the cabs and I only use IRs.  It seems that most discussion is on RedWirez, OwnHammer and 3Sigma IRs.  I got some free ones from their sites and then I bought more of the ones I like the most (RedWirez).  And Line 6 gives you the “Allure†IRs which some people like (I don’t use them – just a matter of what sound you want). 


    On the Helix sound, you will almost certainly encounter the “hiss/fizz†issue.  There are a lot of posts on that but basically you’ll need to have EQ in your signal chain to manage that.  I have eq before my amp and again after it and the effects. 


    I bought some patches and don’t use any (I don’t like the sound).  But they showed me some other ways to think about how to build my signal chains.  If you use effects like I do (comp, eq, distortion, verb, delay…) you need to use both signal chains or you’ll run out of DSP power. 


    I also use a lot of snapshots to have a clean sound, crunch, dist, and overdriven sound for one setup. Note that snapshots only turn things off and on so I’ll use two of the same dist pedal in a chain to have diff settings for diff snapshops.  Another approach is to have 2 independent signal chains (paths A and B) with amps and cabs/IRs and use snapshots to switch between them to have two really diff setups available at once.  You’re limited in the number of effects you can use for a path when doing this. 


    Sorry for the long post – I’m working on music 4-6 hours a day/night and the Helix is integral to that so I’m excited to talk about it! 

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