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sidthekidlives

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About sidthekidlives

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  1. For some reason I feel that the global hi cut works better for me than cutting the same frequencies on the cab IR block ? I wonder why that is ?
  2. hi guys, for those who are interested I thought I'd give you a bit of an update on the line 6 Helix after 1 year of use , my thoughts and observations on what is quite a controversial and interesting but of kit even if you're not into the world of modelling or multi FX. 1. Usability This for me is where the Helix stands apart from the competition ; quite simply if you can think of it you can do it on the Helix in around 5 mins even if you have to consult a control map or something similar. The screen is gorgeous , full color and large. This is not only aesthetically pleasing it is practical ; the colour coding and layout make it easy to understand your signal flow on a dimly lit stage. The footswitch colour coding and scribble strips are fantastically practical and clear , no more searching under dim lights for where you need to stomp. Want to assign multiple parameters to one switch for a solo ? easy , want to set up a switch for a gain AND mid boost AND a volume jump on your amp model ? done , super easy. The routing options for signal flow and connections with the four loops make it pretty much adaptable to any rig configuration I can think of ; when you consider these possibilities it makes the practicality of the unit unbeatable in my opinion. I haven't even delved into the use of scenes yet . If I do have one criticism in this area it's that there is a minute delay in switching patches and no spillover , however I know people use the scenes within a patch to overcome this should the need arise. Another criticism I have is that the only configuration which never seemed to work for me is 4 cable mode. I think this is more due to the fact that this way of using a device effectively routs the signal through an amp twice and does something to the dynamics which I don't like, for me the unit works better going straight to FX return and using the preamps in the unit as your front end. 2. Build quality No major criticisms here. It's build like a tank out of a thick aluminium chassis which feels so rigid that it never seems to flex or move. The volume pedal treadle is also a thick piece of aluminium when never seems to bend and has a good positive feel. In 1 year of use I've never had a crash or a dodgy input or something which appeared to be not working smoothly. If I do have one criticism here I would add some kind of protection or bar at the top of the unit to prevent accidental kicking of the controls etc. My main concern here is not from myself knocking something unintentionally ; it's borne out of the fear of the drunk punter who is at every gig who seems to crash or stumble into your pedals etc ! Basically just something to prevent the chance of a four inch stiletto heel crashing into the unit if possible . Line 6 really addressed this aspect of the unit and it feels like it has the production quality of Yamaha with the aesthetics of something like a BMW or Audi dashboard. 3. Tones and playability. Firstly direct to DAW/studio use. This area has been particularly pleasing for me , there aren't many tones or styles which I feel the unit cannot handle in terms of direct recording and the models feel convincing and more importantly inspiring. They seem to handle dynamics well and you have excellent control of any aspect of the model which you may need ; the output section in particular gives you alot of control of sag and the feel of the output section which is an aspect in which the POD HD was sorely lacking. The effects models are excellent too, the drives and modulation effects overall are very good . If you're a hound for high resolution reverbs with masses of variety I think you may be disappointed, the reverbs sound great to me and are all I require but probably wouldn't compete with the likes of a dedicated Strymon unit. The delays sound excellent to me with plenty of variety . Second , live use. This area has been the most contentious for me in terms of finding my feet with the unit. Again you have masses of choice as to how you use the unit but my main intention was to use this direct to PA/FOH to have the advantages that this affords. The unit can perform extremely well within a conventional amp setup as a multi FX but this was not my intended use. Initially I was underwhelmed ; I expected to plug into the PA, sound like a valve amp and off to go but this is simply not the case with any digital device going direct at gig volume as I have found . In essence what I have found is that you have to tailor the overall sound relative to whatever speaker you are monitoring your tone through at any given time ; if this is a guitar amp and guitar speaker this is easy , you have a consistent sound which is designed to reproduce guitar frequencies which we are all accustomed to . To cut a long story short after alot of testing and tweaking I found that using the global EQ to lop off a massive part of the high end frequencies which are harsh or piercing was like waving a magic wand over the unit. Once I discovered this it was like a eureka moment and I can safely say that I've abandoned a guitar amp from now on , I finally feel I have achieved what I have been searching for for years which is a guitar sound which I find inspiring and exciting to play with the flexibility and portability of a digital pedalboard unit , it took years to get there. 4. In Conclusion There is so much to the Helix which I haven't even covered here in full ; the unit is literally so overflowing with features and options it's hard to write about in a brief way. In short I'm extremely happy with what it offers for my requirements and it's changed the way I approach a guitar sound for live use comprehensively . But it took a while to get there ; use of some good quality impulses , lots of research and tweaking at gig volume got me to the point I am now where I'm extremely happy. I'm not suggesting that this unit or way of working is for everybody it is certainly not, many people which achieve what they want with a cracking valve amp and some pedals and I think there are huge advantages in this. What I can say with confidence is that the Helix can achieve what I have been looking to do for years in terms of a direct guitar sound that I'm satisfied and inspired by. If you're looking for an all in one unit for this purpose it might achieve this too ; I'm sure the other options provided by Fractal and Kemper are just as capable if not more and all have their particular strengths. With continued support from Line 6 it seems to have a bright future ahead and I'm pleased to see that forums and Ebay and the like are not flooded with people trying to sell it on after 1 year. Hope this has been of interest guys and look forward to any feedback or questions anyone may have ; always happy to help anyone interested in the unit . cheers !
  3. MORE clips with humbuckers guys. This track gives a great indication of high gain and hot british tones in my opinion . Great playing too.
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