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Everything posted by GenoBluzGtr

  1. Here is a video I made almost two years ago of some live gigging patches I had built and still use. This is Helix through a PS170 and a 2X12 cab. These are also built with a split-off routing near the end of the signal chain that has a Cab or IR in it... I set up the global settings so that the Helix Volume control only controls the 1/4" out (which goes to the PS170) and DOES NOT control the XLR output (which goes to FOH). This way I can adjust my stage volume without impacting the FOH/PA mix at all. This avoids needing to mic the cab to get your sound to the PA... a little tweaking and you can have the PA tone sounding essentially identical to the Cab tone. Sound guys love this... they have COMPLETE control over the level of the mix coming from your guitar rig... and you can still adjust things on stage (within reason, of course!) without interfering. Each of these 4 presets is based on a two-amp set up (one amp at a time) in a clean / dirty arrangement, but includes some dirt pedals for color as well. The comments below the video has links to the presets on Customtone, as well, if you want to try any of these out.
  2. Here is a very rough recording at a gig a couple months ago. You can hear both guitars clearly on the "harmony" Solo at 1:40. The other guitarist is using a 2X12 closed back cab with a Germino JTM45 Clone (100 watts) and a R9 Les Paul. My rig is the Helix / PS170 / 2X12 Open Back) on a Placater Preset, using a Heritage H535 (335 copy) with Wolfeton Dr V pickups. We are NOT mic'd or in the PA at all on this one. Club was just too small. So this is straight from the Cab. this recording was a Zoom Q2n (tiny thing!) recorder set on a table about 25 ft out front.
  3. I use a Seymour Duncan PS170 into a vertical 2X12 Two Rock cab (oval open back). I've gigged with this set up for over a year now. I've occasionally gone back to trying a FRFR or smaller cab + FRFR and it just doesn't sound as good to my ears. The PS170 is great and seems to be transparent enough with the Bass/Mids/Treble set to noon, but it's nice to have the ability to adjust each for the room or when I change guitars between songs. The sound of a real guitar cab is still my preference and a vertical 2X12 seems to work best for me in smaller rooms (gets the sound up higher so I can hear better, while still being direct-to-the-stage-contact for better low end. One thing that I do is to use a split output in all my presets. At the end of the signal chain - in which I have ZERO cabs or Its, I insert a split path. One goes straight out to the 1/4" outputs. the other path goes to the XLR outs. In this short split path, I insert an IR (or stock cab) block and an EQ block. This is my "FOH" path. 1/4" out goes to my PS170 and 2X12 Cab. The XLR goes direct to the PA. I spend a LOT of time getting the PA path to sound as close to the real cab as possible with HI/Lo cuts in the IR and using the 10-Band EQ block to tweak the tone. Works pretty well, and I don't have to mic my cab at all. I also set my globals so that ONLY the 1/4" output is affected by the Helix Volume. This way my FOH output never changes, except for volume pedal adjustments or differences between snapshots or presets. this way, I can adjust my on-stage volume if needed without impact the soundguy's settings at all. I typically set my Helix volume to about 2-3 O'Clock... this gives me just enough room to get a small increase in volume if needed but i can turn it down a good bit if asked. I rarely touch it at all, but sometimes going from a Les Paul to a Tele or Strat, i need a couple notches of stage volume to hear it better. As for the difference, I rebuilt my patches from scratch. What is "good" through an FRFR can sound bland and flat through a cab. I noticed that I was using a lot of EQ adjustments in the low-mids when I was using an FRFR (one reason for the EQ block on the IR-Split output path). For the Cab, there seems to be inherent mids there and I don't need to add them. I do need a bit more high-end frequencies with the cab, and I can reduce the Hi cut to compensate on the Split Output path. Also, I seem to use lower volume and lower gain settings through the cab. I suspect it's due to the speakers themselves, so each cab/speaker could be different for you, but these are my experiences.
  4. very subjective what you mean by "rock" sound, but there a ton of options... don't be afraid to try a beefier (i.e. more overdriven) oriented amp model and turn the gain back a bit. I've had great luck using the Plexi Brt, Divided duo, and Placater models with my strat (Lollar Dirty Blonde pickups). If you want really marshall-like driven sounds, try the 2204 or the Mod 2204. The lead track in this clip was the strat through the Placater Dirty Model but with the gain dialed back to about 2 or so. The arpeggiated rhythm track was the Placater Clean with the gain boosted up to about 6.
  5. Will Do ! Thanks... configuring the Stomps/Snaps to fit our wishes would be HUGE. I typically use 3 "base" sounds in a Snapshot preset. Would LOVE to have 5 stomps for add-in effects that can be on/off during a song.
  6. Thanks for the info... so it won't work for me then. I want to keep 3 snaps and 3 stomps available for pedal presets, and use one of each for OnSong page flip. I don't want to lose two Stomps or two Snaps. I will either have to switch all my presets to Stomp only or just keep using my Firefly Bluetooth pedal. Rats.
  7. I'm trying to set up my Helix to use two footswitches to turn/scroll pages on my iPad (OnSong App). I figure out how to make it work (pretty easy, actually), however, it will NOT allow me to configure one of my 4 "Snapshot" footswitches to send the Midi CC. All my patches are in 4Snap/4Stomp mode, I redid them all down to where i'm only using 3 for snaps and 3 for stomp, however, when I try to set up FS2 and FS8 (the two left-most of the bank of 8) it will ONLY work on the "Stomp" FS, and NOT on the "Snapshot" FS. If I come out of Snap/Stomp mode and go into "Stomp Only" mode, they work great. I can easily live with one ONE Snapshot and without ONE Stomp, but I do NOT want to eliminate TWO of either. Please, before I go and (yet again) re-configure ALL my presets in Stomp Only mode, am I missing something? Can I get one of the 4 Snapshot FSs to send Midi CC? Thanks!
  8. I made a demo earlier today of my "4 classic amp" snapshot presets, and in the middle of it, I did a quick look at how the Power-Amp/Real Guitar Cab sounds by itself vs how the PA by itself sounds, and then combining the two. If you go to 3:04 through 4:02 you can hear this comparison using an overdriven Blackface / Valve Driver snapshot. I can use this set up with EITHER my cab, or the PA alone and they sound nearly identical... but the sound BEST when I hear both. Check it out and see what you think. The demo starts out comparing all all 4 Drives and all 4 Lead snapshots using a Rocketfire Tele. Then I do a quick Surf demo, and the Speaker/PA comparison. After that I go through each preset and snapshot with a P90 LP and finally hit the heaviest snaps with a Humbucker equipped SUHR classic T. If you're interested, all four of these are uploaded to Custom Tone. "AB763"; "5F6A"; "45/100"; "AC30". I apologize for the very prominent "String Clank"... I was too close to the camera for most of the demo and the volume level was just above conversation level, so the ambient string noise was evident - especially on the cleans.
  9. Background: Lifelong Tube Snob who gave Helix a "try" a year ago and have not played a tube amp at a gig since. Also in a 2-Guitar Band with a Tube Snob, who knows GREAT Tone (and gets it every gig) with deep pockets, so he uses some of the best amps on the planet... so my Helix tone HAS GOT TO be realistic or it stands out like a sore thumb! I have tried the IR route, and have some great IRs that I really like (MBritt and OH are two of my favs), however, I am finding that I can do almost identical cab sims using the stock Helix cabinets. If you have the "right" IR, it's very easy to get a great tone. But going through all the endless options of IRs, can be massively time-consuming, and very often what works for my "Crunch" doesn't work for my "Clean" or "Drive", so even IRs are not immune to the need for tweaking. I also found that when sharing my presets with other users, having an IR in the path just means fewer people can take advantage of great presets, without buying the same IRs that I'm using. I am now starting to use Helix Stock Cabs almost exclusively. They can sound JUST as good, or even better, since there are a few more "tweaks" available. These tweaks help a given Cab model work well with snapshot presets that have different levels of gain on each preset. IRs sometimes don't have QUITE that flexibility. One thing I did was to set up my Helix to have a "split output"... e.g. at the end of my signal chain, I split out an A/B path. One path goes DIRECTLY to the 1/4 output - no cab or IR in that output. and the other (SEE "A"/Pink Circle on the attached pic) output goes through either an IR or a Cab , as well as a couple of other minor blocks for eq tweaking, then out via the XLR outputs. I set my global settings to enable the BIG VOLUME knob to ONLY work on my 1/4" outputs. The XLR outs are NOT affected by this. This enables the FOH/PA sound to be fully controlled by the FOH guy... I can make small adjustments to my stage volume this way without messing up his settings! This enables me to have a non-Cab/IR effected output to use through my power amp/guitar cab on stage (through the 1/4" out), but have the SAME sounds go to FOH via the XLR out. In building presets, I find that I get EXACTLY the tone I want through my poweramp/cab set up, and then I can work on ONLY the blocks that are unique to the parallel path that splits off going to the XLR, to get the FOH sound to match my on-stage sound. This has required me to experiment with a lot of IRs, Stock Cabs and EQs, etc. What I am finding is that my best and easiest way to make the FOH PA speakers sound as close to identical as possible as my real guitar cab/speaker, is to add a EQ block AFTER the CAB/IR block, and to put a Minotaur IN FRONT of the CAB/IR block. This enables me to fine-tune the Lo/Mid/High coming out of the CAB/IR, and the Minotaur block "sets up" the level of grunt, sparkle, guts, and resonance of the CAB/IR. I have found that the Minotaur has a "Sweet Spot" between about 0.9 and 1.3 on the "Gain" adjustment. Check it out for yourself. Put the Minotaur ahead of your cab/ir block and set it for, say... .5 gain. Have the "Tone" set a some nominal level, like 5.5 or 6 and a decent volume. Play through it. Then adjust the "Gain" to, say... 1.5 gain. Then play again. Notice that the High end gets attenuated and the resonant, gutsy, "bloom" sound of the cab starts to come to life, and there really isn't a lot of Drive happening yet. If you need more Sparkle, set the Minotaur to less than 1 on the gain. If you need less high end and more 'bloom', or resonance set it to above 1 on the gain. So with this set up, once I have my baseline tone perfect for my on-stage rig, I use three things... The minotaur, a DUAL CAB arrangement (more on this in a bit) and a EQ, in that order to get my PA speaker to sound like my guitar speaker. But within those three blocks there are a myriad of ways to tweak for the best resonance. My favorite Dual Cab block is one that uses a Matchless 2X12 H30 and a Matchless 2X12 G25 together. On the H30, I use a 160 Ribbon mic. and on the G25 I use a 4038 Ribbon mic. This combo seems to work amazingly well to match my guitar cab. The H30 is a darker cab and the G25 is a bit brighter and more 'raw'. The 4038 seems to smooth out the G25 and cuts the ragged high-end, while the 160 mic is a extremely smooth and realistic sounding mic model. okay, so if I'm doing a clean patch, I will set the Minotaur to a gain setting LESS THAN that "sweet spot"... usually at .4-.5 or so (or sometimes less if I want REALLY clean tones), and adjust the "tone" and "level" to taste. Then I go to the FIRST cab (the H30) and I will set the 160 mic to about 3" distance and dial in a good Hi/Lo cut set up and twist up the "early reflections" to about 30% or so. On the SECOND Cab (the G25), I will set the distance to about 4.5" and make the early reflections also about 25-30%. So now, after playing a bit, I can listen for what's missing. I do this by turning up my Large Volume Knob so I can hear my on-stage cab, then turn it all the way down (so I ONLY hear the XLR output to the PA) and see what is different. If I need more High End, Low End, etc... , I have the following at my disposal: 1. Tone setting on the Minotaur; 2. adjust the distance setting on BOTH cabs - More distant mics = more high-end and less low end while closer mics = more low mids, slight bump in level; 3. Turn up the level on the H30 cab/160 mic for more highs (or reduce the level on the G25 cab for the same), or; 4. Turn up the level on the G25 cab/4038 mic for more low-end (or reduce the level of the H30 cab for more low end); 5. Adjust the Low/High-cut on BOTH cab models; 6. Tweak the EQ block as needed. Keep in mind, these are all come after EVERY BLOCK in my actual preset. It's already been through Wah, Distortions, Amp, EQ, Reverb, Delay, Volume pedal, etc.... this is just affecting my XLR out going to the PA. ANY of these 6 spots to introduce more highs, less highs, more mids, less mids, more lows, less lows, etc... impact the final output differently. Some get muddy quickly, some introduce more low-end but it stays very tight, and resonant. Some introduce more high end with a smooth top, and others put more strident high end in. None of these are good or bad, but having THIS MUCH ability to tweak the final eq of the output to the PA has made a HUGE difference in how realistic my FOH tone is compared with a real amp. I go back and forth between my real guitar speaker (1/4" out, Big Volume knob controlled), and the PA/FOH (XLR out, controlled only by the mixing board and/or powered speaker level) until I get the tones to be as close to each other as possible. I have also done this with real amps vs Helix (play one, play the other, tweak Helix, repeat... until I get the tone I was getting from the real amp), and it also works for that. If you're not using the "split output" setup, like me, you have one additional method that I got from Jason Sadites that is pure magic. (SEE "B"/Green Circle on the attached pic) I also use this in my main signal path.... Insert a Gain block. Insert a 2nd Gain Block. both of these should be just after your amp block but before the Cab/IR block. Drop one of the gain blocks down into a parallel path. Set the Junction block to be a "Crossover" block (SEE "C"/Yellow Arrow on the attached pic) and adjust the frequency of the crossover to about 750Hz - 850Hz. This enables you to tweak as much high end (> than the crossover setting) and separately introduce more or less low end (< the crossover setting) to put the amp's output at exactly the frequency 'mix' you prefer. the outputs of each of these block will then merge back into the main signal path and then enter my final EQ block. Between doing this on my primary path and then the three block method on the XLR parallel "split" output, I find I can get to almost ANY resonant sounding place I seek. Give these a try. It has REALLY made me feel that I can make the Helix sound like nearly any amp ever imagined and do it realistically. Note: To explain the remainder of the preset below: Input block set to 1M impedance -> WAH (assigned to EXP1) -> Kinky Boost (always on, but different setting for different snapshots) -> Teemah (used for my "Drive" and "Lead" snapshots, but not for "Clean or "Crunch") -> Minotaur (always on, like the Kinky boost) -> JTM Brt Amp model -> Gain Block (used for lead boosts, assigned to footswitch -> Split Crossover Gain Section (see explanation above) -> Parametric EQ ->Tremolo (assigned to footswitch) -> Chorus (assigned to Footswitch) -> Reverb (always on-diff settings) -> Delay (always on-diff settings) ->Volume Pedal (assigned to EXP2) -> 1/4" output only, controlled by Helix Volume, going to on-stage power amp and guitar cab. Parallel Split Output path (see explanation above): Minotaur -> Dual Cab Block -> Parametric EQ -> XLR output ONLY to FOH
  10. I am finding that the ones that "POP" for me are the ones where I'm using (and switching between) two different Cabs or IRs... for example, I have some snapshots where I'm using a blackface (twin, deluxe, etc) model for clean and I have a specific IR/Cab assigned, then I use a different amp and Cab/IR for my "overdrive" snapshots..... say a Marshall or Litigator model and a different Cab/IR. When switching between these, (from the "clean" snapshot, to the "Heavy Drive" snapshot), I get the pop, if I still have residual sustaining notes from the the former snapshot. If I mute the strings before I hit the footswitch, it doesn't do it... but that's not practical in a live situation. I use MANY different snapshots that do NOT pop... but those are either two amps into a single Cab/IR, or one amp - one Cab/IR. So maybe it's the 'jump" from one amp to another vastly different amp? or the jump from one to another vastly different Cab/IR ? or both? that cause the pops?
  11. What GangsterUSA said... MODE switch allows you to switch between "normal" mode and "snapshot" mode. If you're in "normal", then only the four buttons that assigned as Stomps will work. A simple press of that mode switch should make the snapshot come back to life. You'll need to press "mode" again when switching back to a non-snapshot preset.
  12. To help you with figuring this out.... when you look at your screen, there are two signal paths... the far right hand side is a circle. Highlight that. then turn your joystick knob... it changes where this "output block" is directed. You want it to show a curved arrow that points down... and the display should read "Path 2A". That takes the upper signal path and 'feeds' it into the input of the lower signal path. The input block (far left) of the lower path should ALSO show an arrow point to it. Until you do this, nothing on the lower signal path is included in your output. If this is unclear, or you can't find what I'm describing, one of us can post a picture... However, you can also check out the 2.0 Owner's manual here.... 2.0 Owners Manual - Rev D - English .pdf ... go to page 15 and read the section on "Choosing an Output".
  13. I will add that (and not to disagree with the expert here), that if you set up your preset with enough DSP space, you CAN simulate switching amps and/or effects. I have several presets where I use a "Fender-ish" amp on my clean snapshots and a Marshall or Litigator or Boogie amp for the dirty snapshots. I even have one that uses a Tweed Bassman for Snapshot 1 and 2 ( clean and crunch) and switches to a Dual Amp set up using a Mesa MkIV and Plexi in stereo for Snapshots 3 and 4 (overdrive and lead on Snapshots 3 and 4). It requires using two of something (amps, pedals, etc) and having one just plain "OFF" on the snapshots you're not using it for and then "ON' for the ones that you are using it for. The other "version" of the pedal or amp will then switch "ON" when the first one is "OFF", etc... So it IS possible, you just don't typically have enough DSP to do this AND have a lot of effects blocks as well - but it makes for a wonderful preset that can get you through an entire gig, if you want. The other cool thing about changing parameters in general, is that we have access to parameters via Helix that you could never do on-stage with a pedal or amp. Example - Amp "Bias" and similar controls... some pedals, like the "Kinky Boost" (an EP Boost model) you can turn on or off the "bright" switch... on the real pedal, you would be taking the pedal apart and switching DIP switches inside the pedal to make that change (or having two pedals on your board set up differently).
  14. I bet this is the issue. If you place things in Path 2, but don't direct the output of Path 1 to Path 2, then they are not in your signal path
  15. I find it works wonders with a T-Style guitar also... i use it on tunes that I used to use the AC30 on... Queen, Bryan Adams, Tommy Tutone etc.. but it's AWESOME as well on country tunes. Those songs where you need a good, chimey clean for part of the song but a crispy, open-sounding slightly driven tone for leads, etc. You can get some good twang out of it.
  16. This is the main reason I use a QSC K series behind me. We use QSC mains, so I know that what I hear behind me is exactly the same as what I'm getting through FOH. I know this is hard to do if you play in venues with their own sound systems, but we play almost exclusively in venues that require us to bring our own PA, subs/mains etc.
  17. But wouldn't that kill my volume to start and stop the Wah? I don't want to use any extra expression pedals.. just the on-board, and I don't want the volume to go up or down to get the wah started, but still need the pedal for volume when not using the wah... that's why I was hoping to use a footswitch to change the expression pedal from Volume to Wah.
  18. Is there a way to assign the wah to a Footswitch to activate it, then control it from Exp 1? My issue is that using the volume pedal at about 80% for rhythm and pushing it to toe-down for solos, means that whenever I go from Volume to Wah, my wah sounds are always too loud. I need a way to use the volume for going from Rhythm to Lead (and making minor adjustments during tunes and between songs/tones), and still be able to use the Wah WITHOUT going to max volume to turn it on. Any ideas?
  19. This is a "work in progress", but since you're looking for starting points, I uploaded this to the Custom Tone just now. I've been working it for a while, and the idea was to integrate 4 different Marshall sounds into a Single Preset. It uses 3 amps (J45, Plexi, 2204 - one at a time, of course!) in one preset with a single cab (4X12 1960 T75). I am experimenting with IRs, and it sounds really great with a few different IRs I have, but this way you can play with it without buying IRs. So this is like a 4-channel "Ultimate Marshall" that goes from Clean to pretty nice overdrive in steps. There is a Teemah Pedal that is "on" for the final highest-gain snapshot, but is also footswitchable on/off in the other snaps. Stomp/Snap mode - 4 stomps on top, 4 snaps on bottom. 3 of the stomps are populate (Teemah, Tremolo, Chorus) and one is still empty. The 4 Snaps are "JTM45 Clean"; "JTM45 Crunch"; "Plexi Drive"; "JCM Drive" These are definitely NOT bright at all... nice, classic rock-ish stuff. I am cutting the lo/hi in a post-cab Hi/Lo Cut EQ block.
  20. I appreciate all the responses. I'm learning new things all the time with the Helix. So, for my own knowledge (I've never really used noise gates before), it's my understanding that a Noise Gate is similar to a compressor, but in reverse? It only damps (or cuts) things that are below a certain level - and that's controlled by the "threshold" setting. I'm trying to understand the 'Decay' setting. I know it's like a "release" control that's on some gate pedals, but I don't quite grasp what different settings do in relation to the sound. If it's strictly Threshold (level), there shouldn't be any kind of chop or stutter... so I suspect that the things I'm hearing that I don't like are really due to my "Decay" settings. If I understand it better, I could probably find settings that work for me.
  21. I am using a LP Jr with P90s (not many good "noiseless" alternatives out there for these... the "noiseless" versions don't sound like P90s for the most part) and a Telecaster. Not really any "hot" pickups... and I find that with Clean or Crunch presets or snapshots, I don't need the noise gate at all... it's simply not noisy enough to warrant it, and if I have one, I can generally set the threshold and decay to the level that it doesn't impact the tone... But for any of my Plexi or JCM or JT45 or even an AC30 with pedals in front that gets me to "Bad Company", "Foreigner", "Grand Funk Railroad", "Ted Nugent", "Deep Purple", "Aerosmith", etc... type gainy-ish tones, the noise between notes/songs/chords is just excessive with the P90s (less so with the Tele, but still there)... and I can't get either noise gate to the point that it's quite enough without it impacting the trailing parts of notes or the sustain. Of course, if you're playing "clean" or "not-so-much-gain" or using Noiseless Pickups - this shouldn't be an issues anyway, right? My humbucker guitars don't have an issue... but I get certain tones with my P90s that I don't want to live without, so it appears that I'm faced with just putting up with the noise, learning to use a volume pedal (never had to before) or putting up with the stutter / choppy decay that the gate imposes.
  22. I just went through a similar issue with an LT... it turned to to be a driver issue. Had not "activated" the downloaded driver on my Mac. Once the driver is downloaded, on a Mac, you have to go into the Privacy and Security settings and "acknowledge" that the driver is acceptable, and a restart required after you "acknowledge".
  23. I find that both of them (input block AND the specific block) cause the very early lead-in to a note and especially the sustain/decay of notes to seem "choked"... in extreme settings it even has a little of the "Stutter" effect in the trail-off. Doesn't make a huge impact on the actual bloom of the notes, but the overall feel is hard to overcome for me. I prefer to use the individual block, because I like to not have a noise gate on my lower-gain and clean snapshots, but for the one or two heavier gain snapshots, I need to quite the hiss between songs / notes / chords. Hard to describe or to capture on a sound clip, but it's noticeable if you put a block in, play some riffs, then bypass that block and play the same thing again. Definitely some choke/stutter with the block on during the gaps between notes/chords. FYI... My "heavier gain" is NOT 'high-gain' as many of you think of it... it's a heavy classic-rock overdriven tone... think 70s/80s rock stuff. That's as heavy as I get. But it is very noisy using a P90 Les Paul.
  24. Thanks for these tips. We RARELY play anywhere that uses a "sound guy", the PA is on stage with us and I am usually the one making adjustments... essentially set during sound check, and then only if we have issues (feedback, someone's vocals or monitor needs a nudge, etc). So I'm looking for consistency, since making dynamic adjustments mid-song is quite difficult. I HAVE noticed that with my set up (big volume controls both 1/4" and XLR outs) I am generally keeping the mixer slider on my Helix signal down pretty low to make it fit with the mix well. I'm monitoring through my own vocal monitor to make sure there's not too much of 'me' in the mix, and my FRFR (behind me) to give me the sound I want on stage. Get's kind difficult. I want to eventually just plug my own stage-mix into Channel B of my vocal monitor so I have as much of "me" as I want, and then mix the FOH signal to be right in the overall mix, but I can see that being difficult If I'm listening to both my overall mix (Channel A) and my "me" tone (Channel B) through the same monitor.
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