So I just got the email about the update and IMMEDIATELY ran it - throwing caution to the wind.
The update itself was totally uneventful. I used the workbench interface that came with my 59 and did also have it plugged into an old XPS box (from a Vax 500) and I had no issues at all. Loaded up the new monkey and it installed both the new version of Workbench and the firmware within about 5 minues. No hiccupps at all.
Workbench - the new workbench is purdy! I like the layout. I don't see that it adds much functionality, but I've only briefly played with it. Someone mentioned that the 'Magnetic Blend' slider is new. Could be. I just don't recall. There is also a model for 'Natural Body' which appears to eliminate any body modeling - just my theory. 12 String settings are now controlled by the 'Parallel Pitch' thingy. Don't see any other differences. Oh one more thing. When launching and connecting to my 59, the software seems to take my longer to initially synch with the guitar. I assume this is due to the HD models having more data. Again just my theory.
Firmware - Probably not as dramatic an update as some may expect - at least to my ears. Models appear to be the same as they had been with the exception of the Tele models. In the second and fourth positions, we now have a Tele with wide range humbuckers. No more ultra bassy circuit in the fourth position and I don't miss it. I see no other differences, but haven't tried everything yet.
So how does it sound? Pretty damned good to my ears. This will take time to digest, but I do think every model I've tried sounds better. Perhaps not dramatically better, but definitely better. I always felt there was a tiny bit of piezzo sound coming through and to my ears, this is significally diminished. I almost hate to say this, but the best way I can describe what I'm hearing is --- HD. They just sound like more detailed models.
Perhaps the biggest improvement is the 12 string models. Much less pitch chasing. It is still somewhat evident on very low notes, but from about the lowest D in standard tuning and up, it seems to be much more stable. I'm very pleaed with this. The Ricks sound way better!
I don't sense any change in the acoustics. I suspect that the previous update was sufficient there. Again, just my theory.
So I'm pretty damned happy. Though, I've only played the update for about a half hour, it genuinely sounds better to me and I thought it was pretty damned good already.
Kudos L6! About damned time!
Please chime in with your thoughts.
2 quick edtitions.
The PC I'm using is a custom built Windows 8 machine. i7(3770K) with 16 gb of ram and a couple of SSDs. Again ZERO install issues.
I mentioned that Workbench takes longer to load. However - during the load, it doesn't stop the modelling so you can play away while it's synching :)