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Question about pre and power amp models...?

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I've definitely noticed a huge change in my tone dropping the helix in the middle of my board. Seems even when I have no blocks selected my signal is a choked compared to just running straight into my amps. Yes still using my amps, just didn't want to spend more $ to have stage good volume. Wondering if this preamp pedal would help get back the tone?

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I've definitely noticed a huge change in my tone dropping the helix in the middle of my board. Seems even when I have no blocks selected my signal is a choked compared to just running straight into my amps. Yes still using my amps, just didn't want to spend more $ to have stage good volume. Wondering if this preamp pedal would help get back the tone?

 

You have probably tried this already but two frequent culprits of tone/volume loss are not selecting "Mic" as the output level (instead of "Line") where appropriate and not cranking the physical "Volume" knob high enough.

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So, I tried the ART TUBE MP with HD500x and I must admit that it makes a big difference.

I just drop the TUBE MP into a pair of patches that I use daily, no special fix to the patches itself (one high gain, one clean).

 

The chain goes like this:

guitar > HD500x pre-amp effect (tubescreamer, noisegate) > HD500X amp with cab sim and mic > FXLOOP > TUBE MP > HD500x mixer > HD500x effects (reverb, delay...) > L2T

 

The sound gains fullness, and loose that "digital factor" that you surely know.

While playing, I use to switch between FXLoop on and off to hear the difference and, believe me, I can't play without it anymore!

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So, I tried the ART TUBE MP with HD500x and I must admit that it makes a big difference.

I just drop the TUBE MP into a pair of patches that I use daily, no special fix to the patches itself (one high gain, one clean).

 

The chain goes like this:

guitar > HD500x pre-amp effect (tubescreamer, noisegate) > HD500X amp with cab sim and mic > FXLOOP > TUBE MP > HD500x mixer > HD500x effects (reverb, delay...) > L2T

 

The sound gains fullness, and loose that "digital factor" that you surely know.

While playing, I use to switch between FXLoop on and off to hear the difference and, believe me, I can't play without it anymore!

That's good to hear...mine should be here in a day or two. I'm running an L2T also, hoping for the same results. What settings are you using on the pedal itself? Also, I don't know if I would have thought to put it before the mixer block...did you try it after, just out of curiosity?

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That's good to hear...mine should be here in a day or two. Hoping for the same results. What settings are you using on the pedal itself?

both input and output at 50%, the idea being that the overall volume should be the same with the pedal on or off

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both input and output at 50%, the idea being that the overall volume should be the same with the pedal on or off

Lol...that was quick! You beat my edited post. ;)

 

I might not have thought to put it before the mixer block, did you try it after? Just curious...

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Yes, I've tried before the amp, after the mixer and, finally between the amp and the mixer and this is where I had best results.

 

Placing it before the amp, I couldn't hear that much difference,

 

Placing it after the mixer, was a better guess. It works more or less like putting a tube compressor after the mixer, even if the MP sounds better than the tube comp in this position.

 

But, moving the MP between the amp and mixer made my day :)

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Yes, I've tried before the amp, after the mixer and, finally between the amp and the mixer and this is where I had best results.

 

Placing it before the amp, I couldn't hear that much difference,

 

Placing it after the mixer, was a better guess. It works more or less like putting a tube compressor after the mixer, even if the MP sounds better than the tube comp in this position.

 

But, moving the MP between the amp and mixer made my day :)

Cool, thanks for the tips!

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You have probably tried this already but two frequent culprits of tone/volume loss are not selecting "Mic" as the output level (instead of "Line") where appropriate and not cranking the physical "Volume" knob high enough.

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I'll give the Mic setting a shot. As far as not cranking the volume nob, I have tried all volume levels, and it doesn't seem to help tuning it up all the way. Just seems to loose definition the more I crank it. Have it set at 50%, which really is leaving me to quite for practice, so I turn up to 75%, which does increase vol a tad, but it aggravates the tone issue.

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Well this thread made me buy the art tube mp. It's my understanding that putting it anywhere after the Amp will put it in between the pre and poweramp with the HD500X. I look forward to giving this a try.

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I'm glad you guys loved the ART MP. I hated it. Did something like what you are all describing with my HD 500 years ago. The Tube MP ended up being something that was altering the tone in a way that I just got fatigued with. It is literally distorting your signal, and if you like that, awesome... but that's all it's doing imho. Everybody's different, and it's only 50 bucks.

 

Also... me and a buddy each had one. They didn't even last a year before they broke. Ugh.

And, for me, it worked better as a DI from the output of the HD 500 into the system than in the loop, so try it that way, too.

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I bought a used one for $25. No big risk there...I may have it for sale soon, but I wanted to try it for myself. I'm pretty happy with my tone now, so we'll see.

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PeterHamm...I haven't experienced any distortion with it in the send/return of the helix. As I said, I make sure NOT to overdrive it using the input and output levels on the ART itself.
​The only coloring of the sound I'm hearing is a nice warmth that was lacking before that. The cleans are still clean, and the hi-gain amps sound nice and warm and "gooey" like melted butter. :)

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clintmartin...just be real careful with the levels. I never tried it with the HD 500.

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clintmartin...just be real careful with the levels. I never tried it with the HD 500.

Yeah, I want the volume to be balanced either on or off. It should work the same in the loop of the HD as the Helix. Like I said, no big risk. For $25 I'll give it a go!

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PeterHamm...I haven't experienced any distortion with it in the send/return of the helix. As I said, I make sure NOT to overdrive it using the input and output levels on the ART itself.

​The only coloring of the sound I'm hearing is a nice warmth that was lacking before that. The cleans are still clean, and the hi-gain amps sound nice and warm and "gooey" like melted butter. :)

 

You haven't experienced "clipping" but that warmth is a tube distortion that simply sounds really good to you. The "coloring" of sound is technically a "distortion" of it. But even my cleans have some grit in them, so it's not necessarily a bad thing.

 

I just hope your MP lasts better than my buddy's and mine did.

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Of course it's tube coloration or "distortion"  and of COURSE it sounds good....not just to me, but to all guitarists who love tube amp sounds.

​I do the exact same thing with my DT 50 in the send/return except it's a little more complicated because I want to get the power amp tubes of the DT 50 so I use a Riviera Rock Crusher between the head and the cab and get the "Return" signal to the Helix from that.

 

​But yes Peter...it's a sweet warm tube sound I'm getting. Not a distorted clipping sound at all. I can bypass the effects loop on Helix and the volume doesn't change (because I set the MP up correctly for me) and the amount of grit or distortion in the tone doesn't change. What DOES change is that the "fizz" goes away and the sound "blooms".

 

 â€‹I'm wondering if the HD 500 didn't play well with it as opposed to the Helix? I don't know, but you didn't get anything like what I'm getting.  I never tried it with the HD500 because with that I used to use the L6 link straight to my DT 50 for the tubes and it sounded GREAT. Especially compared to what the HD500 sounded like straight to the board without the DT50 adding that tube sound.

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Yeah, My HD sounds great with my DT25. I'm hoping the Art Tube MP will help with direct tones, and maybe even with amp sims. I also thought it may help some if I bypass the HD cabs and use IRs inside my daw. Lots of possibilities.

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Yeah, My HD sounds great with my DT25. I'm hoping the Art Tube MP will help with direct tones, and maybe even with amp sims. I also thought it may help some if I bypass the HD cabs and use IRs inside my daw. Lots of possibilities.

Or just use those IRs inside Helix.

 

Honestly, the cabs in Helix are WAY good enough for me, but you can load your own IRs in. I've done it with acoustic, but not electric yet.

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Okay I've been testing the tube pre with my HD500X this morning. At 50% input and 50% output it was much lower in volume, so I turned it up until equal with bypassed volume. I used Mautodynamiceq to do some freq analysis and found in the FX loop the tube pre added some low end and raised the mids. Post mixer it added lows and cut the mids. To my ear the HD500X sounds better without it, but it does add something. You'll like it or you won't.

Next up...testing with S-Gear.

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That is genius worked great! I wish that Line 6 would think about this in the future. I used a Behringer tube MC-100 took all the abrasive tones off the top and warm the patches up.

 

Man I knew this is a great device but I was on the edge because I simply could not get anything to sound like my real amps.

 

I have used a Soldano 50+ and a Digitech valve effects (great overdrive), Dunlop wah, for years love the tone but wanted to expand and get into something new to use live and for recording.

 

People will probably get upset when I say this but I never really liked Fractal products. I chose the Line 6 because of the support they give!

 

I own a POD XT pro run it through a DBX 1 compressor before the DAW and use it record and also live mics to the Soldano to get a great recorded tone but with reading this I can tell you this guys solution is exactly what it needed.

 

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