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Helix 4CM Amp Switch Mesa V:25 and Mesa Mini-Rect Not Working


GadgetGuitar
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After watching the video posted this morning (10-15-15) regarding the problem with the Helix and a Mesa V:25 not switching, I wanted to check out my setup.

 

I ran a 4CM, everything works great with that setup on both a Mesa V:25 and a Mini Rect.  Surprised of how quiet it was on clean/dirt even at high gain and volume.

 

Problem is in the Amp Switch.  Using the same cable that was supplied with the Mesa V:25, I get the same results.  Amp switch on 1, 2 or 1/2 all do nothing for the channel switch.  2 and 1/2 will switch the EQ on/off.  The Mesa mini Rect, using the same cable that was supplied with the amp, simply flashes the channel on off.  It will not stay on channel 1 only the dirt channel which it goes to when the cable is plugged in.

 

Both amps will switch to the dirt channel, no matter what channel they are in at that moment the cable is plugged in.  Both cables are TS cables supplied by Mesa.  Both foot switches supplied by mesa work the amp channel.

 

Will post a video in the morning at work.  Slow internet here at the house.  The Amp Switching does not work with either of my Mesa amps.

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Hmm... both Mesa V:25 and a Mini Rect. seem to be having the channel switching issue.  This is three different people and now 4 different amps.  Not a faulty Helix at this point.  Something just not jiving.. maybe it is a voltage issue as DI suggested elsewhere.  I am very interested to know what's the  issue.  I am sure it'll turn up soon.

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I, too, have this issue with my Mark V 25.

 

I specifically got the Helix because it supported the amp switching.

 

I really don't see what the issue could be, as the Mesa amps are a very simple short-to-sleeve switch. Can someone from Line 6 describe exactly how the remote switching port operates?

 

I am willing to wait for a fix, but if this drags out for months and then we find out that it is unfixable, can Line 6 confirm that they will offer full refunds? 

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The Mesa is definitely latching. It has been tested by several people, including me. If you short to the sleeve, the channel changes. If you let go, it changes back. Something within the Helix (software or hardware unknown) is shorting the tip to the sleeve.

 

Note that the EQ switching does work properly from the Helix. It is just the channel changing that is not working.

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I had something similar happen with a Voodoo Labs control switcher and a Marshall DSL. The problem was that I was using a simple "Y" type cable. There is a cable called an "insert cable" that I was supposed to be using. Once I switched over to using the correct cable, I didn't have anymore problems.

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  • 1 month later...

If you use a mono cable and put it partially in (feel for the first click) to the Helix you can then control the channel but not the graphic. I've been using it this way as I always have the graphic on my 5:25  on anyway. Once I'd worked it out I put a bit of electrical tape on the shaft (!) of the connector to stop me from pushing it in all the way (in the Helix).

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OK - I just tried to get the channel switching working with my 2 Channel H....not only was I unsuccessful but now the amp switching on my amp doesn't work at all.  The amp is set on the clean channel with no reverb and the blue channel light doesn't even light up.

 

If I plug in either a mono or stereo cable from the Helix EXT AMP to the footswitch jack then the blue LED for the clean channel lights up but no combination of options allows it to work.  

 

This one has me truly stumped - and obviously very bummed out.  I was planning to gig with the PRS this weekend.  Now I have a non-functional amp.  Major bummer.

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OK - I just tried to get the channel switching working with my 2 Channel H....not only was I unsuccessful but now the amp switching on my amp doesn't work at all.  The amp is set on the clean channel with no reverb and the blue channel light doesn't even light up.

 

If I plug in either a mono or stereo cable from the Helix EXT AMP to the footswitch jack then the blue LED for the clean channel lights up but no combination of options allows it to work.  

 

This one has me truly stumped - and obviously very bummed out.  I was planning to gig with the PRS this weekend.  Now I have a non-functional amp.  Major bummer.

 

Assuming you have not damaged your amp you may be able to restore proper operation by getting and connecting a more garden variety footswitch(don't use the Helix) and attempting to reset the amp. I think I had this happen one time when I was hooking up an Amp Gizmo to my Boogie and I was able to restore normal operation with the correct cable and switching things on and off.

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We're aware of the issue and are currently investigating. This appears to only affect Mesa Mk V:25 amps.

no...!! there´s problems not only with the mesa, but also my vox amps f.e....i have immense ground loops and in case i´d cut the ground it popps really loud when switching, so you can´t use it without ruining the amp....;-(

it seems only ring is ok, but tip doesn´t work...

the really sad thing is, this seems to not be a software, but a hardware problem...i can´t understand, why they don´t use relay switching like every serious switcher!!!!

so since i´d fear they won´t make hardware updates, this is really, really sad....!!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

It looks like Santa will be delivering a helix to me on Christmas Day. The amp I have is a mesa mini rectifier. Is there a workaround or fix for channel switching with it yet?

 

After looking at the knowledge base, it appears there may be a workaround for this problem. Can anyone confirm that it will work on a mini rectifier?

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I have not found any solution to the Mini Rectifier or the 5:25.  Apparently there is a way to make a cable not going to worry about modifying the cable.  I run the Amp Channel switch on the board.  My needs are not that I need that fast of switching.  Just need it to go clean or dirty as needed for the song.  Do not switch clean to dirt mid song all that much.  Would make it easier but will wait and see what Line 6 can do to fix it.

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I have not found any solution to the Mini Rectifier or the 5:25. Apparently there is a way to make a cable not going to worry about modifying the cable. I run the Amp Channel switch on the board. My needs are not that I need that fast of switching. Just need it to go clean or dirty as needed for the song. Do not switch clean to dirt mid song all that much. Would make it easier but will wait and see what Line 6 can do to fix it.

Thanks for the reply. I think I will try to make the cable as described in the Knowledge base. It involves an 11 K resistor. I just hope it works for the mini rectifier too. (I'm assuming it won't hurt anything by hooking this cable up to the amplifier)

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  • 4 weeks later...

The resistor did not work for me. It does successfully prevent the channel from always being switched to channel 2 initially and does allow you to change from channel 1 to channel 2. However, once you change to channel 2, it will not change back.

You were using the Mark V:25 right? (Not the Mini rectifier)

 

 

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I did not see the Knowledge Base article on the Mesa V:25?  I was going to make one and test with the Mini Rectifier and the V:25.  I know someone tried it and it did not work has anyone tried it and work?

 

I was going to but I didn't have an extra speaker cable sitting around to cut up.  (I only have a mini rectifier)

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I got a 10k and a 1k in the shop.  Going to patch into my TRS cable to see how it switches.  Nothing lost if it does not work.  I just didn't see the Knowledge Base article, thought they pulled it because it did not work?

 

Thanks for trying this.  I look forward to seeing if it switches your mini rectifier.  If it does, I guess I will be cannibalizing a speaker cable!

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Thanks for posting the picture.

 

So I had the shop wire in 11k (a 10 and a 1 soldered in series) resistance on the tip of the TRS cable used for the channel switching.  I get the same thing on the Mesa V:25, switches the EQ on/off very well and will NOT change channel.  The channel goes to Channel 2 when the cable is plugged into the system.

 

The Mini Rectifier does the same thing it did before.  It Switches the amp channel but like a momentary switch it switches channel then goes back.  Will not stay on the channel.

 

I did have our shop guys test the cable with the resistors it is actually loading it at 11.1k.

 

Still running the 4CM method when needed but I bring the amp switcher. 

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Sorry Guys,

 

I do not have a Mini Rec or MKV:25... I originally pulled this resistor info from the Helix FAQ which has been superseded by this statement...

 

http://line6.com/support/page/kb/_/effects-controllers/helix/helix-and-ext-amp-controlling-r791

 

"Helix’s ability to control external amp channel and/or reverb switching has been tested with many popular amps and heads. Unfortunately this does not guarantee compatibility with all products. Note that, depending on the circuitry of the channel switching jack in the guitar amp used, the EXT Amp function may not operate as expected."

 

After doing some research, I found that Elantric from V-Guitar Forum proposed that LED's present in the MESA footswitch might be part of the solution to the puzzle...

 

http://www.thegearpage.net/board/index.php?threads/line-6-helix-and-mesa-boogie-mark-v-25-channel-switching-issue.1628810/page-3

 

I am trying to figure out if this could work....I'll report back

 

seeya

 

Joe

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Thanks for posting the picture.

 

So I had the shop wire in 11k (a 10 and a 1 soldered in series) resistance on the tip of the TRS cable used for the channel switching.  I get the same thing on the Mesa V:25, switches the EQ on/off very well and will NOT change channel.  The channel goes to Channel 2 when the cable is plugged into the system.

 

The Mini Rectifier does the same thing it did before.  It Switches the amp channel but like a momentary switch it switches channel then goes back.  Will not stay on the channel.

 

I did have our shop guys test the cable with the resistors it is actually loading it at 11.1k.

 

Still running the 4CM method when needed but I bring the amp switcher. 

 

Thanks for trying this and posting your results.  I wonder if it is worth hoking up a potentiometer to be able to quickly try different values?  Is there a way to damage the Helix or amp with a bad resistance value?

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It looks like Line 6 is using open collector transistors for switching to ground as opposed to using relays.

 

There seems to be an isolation problem between the EXT control 1 and EXT control 2 that might be mitigated by increasing the stated 11k resistance. The most reliable way is by using relays, like in the below pic, which I will wire up and test.

 

The only drawback is that the relays need power, so you will need to provide 9VDC to the interface box.

 

Seeya

 

Joe

 

mk525_switch_3.jpg

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Howdy Folks, 

 

I was successful in getting the Helix to control the Mesa Boogie MKV:25...

 

The box has two relays that isolate the two switching functions... it is shown powered by a 9V Battery, but ,an FX power Supply works as well.

 

Instead of the short pigtail and single 1/4" phone jack, the box would probably be more useful with two 1/4" phone jacks... then you could use a long and short TRS cable to place the interface near the Amp or near the Helix... (wherever it's easiest to get power for an adapter.)

 

Here are some pix of the interface box...

 

v25_w_1.jpg

 

v25_w_2.jpg

 

v25_w_3.jpg

 

 

 

Based on this schematic if you want to build one yourself...

 

mk525_switch_3.jpg

 

 

 

Here's a video showing the operation...

 

https://youtu.be/wLhKsCm74TM

 

 

seeya

 

Joe

 

 

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