Jump to content
capdoogie

Firehawk 1500 reviews

Recommended Posts

CapDoogie...thanks for the reply! So if go the xlr route the Soundguy can control your volume FOH and you can control your master output independently (like a monitor) Do you use any traditional pedals in the front of the amp in addition to the foot controller? How do they sound with the 1500? I ideally want to use the 1500 just for amp models and my real pedalboard for stomps. Thanks again!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes that is correct, the big volume knob on top only controls what you here out the front of amp. The xlr out is a fixed line out signal. So the person running the board corrects that level and any minor tweaks to eq. I use a g50 wireless and step out into room and see how my eq/tone sounds, and I sometimes go to board and change the eq ever so slightly. I haven't run any pedals thru the fx loop or in front of amp so I can't help you there. Also I have not run a feed back to my amp yet to see how it handles being a monitor and a guitar amp all at once.

  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Played out with fh1500 once again this time larger venue full sound board mains and subs. Fh1500 is very close from what is set for your tone out the front compared to xlr left/mono out. Gain on board was unity (0). Only had to turn high freq down from 12 o'clock to about 11 everything else was left flat 12 o'clock. So from what I'm finding is the xlr out is just a hair trebly than front side of amp. Most all my presets volumes are set around 40 to 60% this is so I have more wiggle room on the master volume knob on top of amp. Even in the worship band I play in with these preset volumes I can set the master knob half way up. Well I have to say I'm presently surprised and happy with this amp! Did I say it's heavy, lol.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I picked up the 1500 about three days ag and have been testing it pretty hard. First off yes, they are heavy and bulky.

 

First off upgrade your firmware. I had some issues that I will discuss below but they seemed to be cleared up with the firmware. (fingers crossed)

 

I did a run through of all the presets and most are surprisingly close to the real amps. I own a lot of amps such as the Vox 15, Vox 30, Deluxe Reverb, Twin, Marshall Blues Breaker, etc... The patches came in pretty close and was really impressed by both the VOX and Fender emulations. The Marshall tones were OK.   I also tried a lot of guitars with different PU's, CS Strat, CS Tele, CS Esquire, Gibson Tennessean, Les Paul Standard, PRS David Grissom. The Les Paul and the Tennessean were OK with the amp but sounded a bit dark tone wise.  Lots of tweaking was needed even when selecting the PU configurations in the app. Could just be my ears but I was surprised. All the PU's are stock by the way. The Esquire, PRS and Strat worked right out of the box with the preset tones without much tweaking.

The actual sound is pretty darn good and it is nice and loud, enough for a gig. However I highly recommend PB1 Bigshot from Radial. It gave the amp a real nice clean boost on the pedal board.  I plugged the amp into my Windows 10 and 7 PC with the drivers loaded without any problems. I use Cubase and selecting the ASIO driver (Firehawk ASIO) it recorded fine. This week I am going to do a lot of recording with this amp. So I can let anyone know how it turns out if anyone is interested.

I have tried a few stomp boxes and everyone one of them required a lot of tweaking to get them to the tone I like, which I expected. The Plexi Drive from Wampler I had the hardest time with for some reason even using different amp modelers such as the Blackface or Vox 30. Sort of the same thing with the Black 65 from Wampler. On my tube amps, VOX and DR.Z, these pedals are fantastic.I tried a few other overdrives and had some problems with them as well. But like in the real world some pedals do not work with some amps very well. The amp seems to like using its own internal drive emulations.  I use a lot of stereo pedals. I used the stereo ins and outs. NOTICE in order for the ins and outs to work you have to turn them on in the app. Bottom line it worked flawlessly. My Strymon pedals really jumped out due to the wet/dry/wet configuration.

I am a bit disappointed in the app connection with the Firehawk in as much as the app is intuitive to a point. It's trying to get deeper is where the app falls apart. For instance, the Stereo part of the amp and position of effects in the chain. Lots of question there. The Bluetooth connection can be frustrating. For some reason it will just drop the connection and find it again. (this i believe was fixed with the new firmware upgrade) There really is no information to speak of except a line or two in the "manual" on how to tweak the parameters when not using the app. How to get out of the edit mode while not using the app is still a mystery to me. Back to the app, it is sort of easy but still LOTS OF QUESTIONS which means I have to either go to the forum and ask a question which means a long post to get an answer or try to get a hold of Line 6 which is a very spotty.  I really HATE the fact that I can't use the PC to tweak the app settings. You have to have a Mac or Android device to adjust anything. Line 6 should look at the Eventide H9 app. That critter is really good and its native on the PC.

I used the amp in a live situation today and can make a few more comments on that as well. I am recording tonight and tomorrow using the amp and will have more info on that as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the review faronjames. I was starting to feel like I was on a deserted island, lol. Been playing out live for awhile now and I am impressed every time I play thru this amp. Manuals are lame. I always take my iPad with me to gigs if I need to do a quick tweak. So far do good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only thing you will find out is if your guitar sounds a little bass heavy out the front it will sound about perfect thru XLr to FOH. If you run a guitar that's sounds pretty clean out the front it will be just a little brittle trebly out the xlr's, I have found on this amp. I think it's due to the large bottom bass ports on the cab and it the enclosed back that gives you that nice bassy front but doesn't transfer that to the xlr outs as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Faronjames, this may be a dumb question that I haven't found, but we're is th pu selection in the fire hawk app?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, pick up mode only works with Jtv and variax guitars only! Doesn't apply to any other guitars and there pickup configuration...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another one for faron James, regarding the marshall models , try setting your presence all the way up and turn down the treble to taste, sounds a lot more amp like that way (tip I picked up from the hd500 forum yesterday)

Actually it improves a lot of the amps but works specifically well with the 45 and the plexi

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any body have any ideas how to put a short vid on here? Every time I try I can't get the video to play

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Any body have any ideas how to put a short vid on here? Every time I try I can't get the video to play 

 

 

Upload your video to Youtube , then share the URL link

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you realize that you need to adjust the sound so that another speaker connected to the XLR out sounds as close as possible it depends, of course, on the speaker the XLR signal will go through.

 

The easiest way to adjust low end of the speaker system without affecting the XLR outs is to change the speaker mode either in the app or on the amp itself. We have three speaker modes:

 

Wall

Intended for situations where the amp is close to a wall or in corner. The low end is cut to account for the increased low end response caused by the walls.

 

Floor

Intended for situations where the amp is used on the floor with the kick stand. The low end is cut (less) to account for the floor coupling.

 

Free Field

Intended for situations where the amp is used on stand, a case- not close to a floor or walls. The low end is not cut.

 

In the app the output tab has a setting for that:

 

post-1536378-0-31682300-1456866752_thumb.png

 

On the amp, enter Live Edit mode by pressing the small encoder knob, turn the small knob until the display shows "SPKR", press the small knob again, turn the big knob (volume knob) to select the speaker mode. Press the "TAP" button to get out of Live Edit mode.

 

For more fine adjustments indepently from the XLR outs use the global eq. This one accessed from the app- the last element in the signal chain.

 

post-1536378-0-75271900-1456866744_thumb.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back again. Hey and thanks for all the tips and information. I appreciate everyone's input.

 

One real fast note before I finger chat myself into a stupor here. The new firmware seemed to correct any and all problems I was having the the amp. So nothing to report on any glitches.

 

My live experience was similar to capdoggie. A few tweaks through the xlr and your good to go. The wet/dry/wet works very well but I found out it's  actually better to mic the front of the amp with two mic's if you run mic's at all. Otherwise if you need to hook it through the PA then use the XLR's.  The wet/dry/wet is pretty nice and effective.A real WDW uses another amp or two in the configuration. So the sound is much more intense and the effect much stronger. But who in the hell is going to lug that many amps to a gig that will last about an hour or so? For a quick down and dirty impressive sounding system the Firehawk 1500 will give it to you. I actually didn't need to use half my pedal board because the emulation and gain for the amp really took care of that. The only thing I used was the stereo ins and outs. I really like my Strymon effects. So all in all for a live situation this critter passed with flying colors.

 

I did a lot of recording yesterday and today. How did the Firehawk 1500 do? Well... Here's the deal in a nutshell. If you want a real WDW system the recording studio can set you up with one. Say your using an overdriven Vox for your center sound clean loud and a taste nasty. Then using two Fender Deluxe's for your wet stereo setup. There is no way the Firehawk can do that from what I can tell and if so please correct me. But if your happy with the one amp solution you have to mic the Firehawk in three maybe four ways to get that lush sound. Using the outs or the USB was OK. There is nothing like real air between the mic and the amp.

 

So all in all is the Firehawk worth it?. I would say yes. It covers a lot of bases, cuts down on all the pedals and gives you some impressive tones. The only real drawback are the chiropractor bills it cost to lug this thing around.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"On the amp, enter Live Edit mode by pressing the small encoder knob, turn the small knob until the display shows "SPKR", press the small knob again, turn the big knob (volume knob) to select the speaker mode. Press the "TAP" button to get out of Live Edit mode."

 

Thank you for that info.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All I have is my fbv short board Mkii soon to be fbv3. Attached to a pedaltrain with a boss tuner and my g50 wireless and away I go, for live out with the fh1500 there is no need for Xtra stomp boxes, IMO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Capdoogie you should try the Strymon Deco and the Mobius for giggles. The 1500 speaker system makes them sound like magic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Im afraid to I just might like them...do you run them in fx loop or up front?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Im afraid to I just might like them...do you run them in fx loop or up front?

Lol, same here! Just what I need, GAS for more gear :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I think I don't like faronjames on this fh1500 forum any more. Lol. I try things he suggest and I think there pretty cool. So I used my dd2 dd3 boss delays and yes there the originals thru the fx loop and anything else I could find laying around. Now I think you can go nuts with the fx in your amp added to fx outside in the loop. Etc. wow what a great stand alone moddling amp. I did notice a slight darkining and a little compressed feel to the tone when adding in the fx loop but nothing you couldn't eq out if needed.. The more more I play and gig out the more I love this amp and now it feels lighter, ha ha

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Haha all that carrying is making you stronger, you should make a rocky style training montage using the firehawk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still like the fx's in the fh1500 better. Just easier to adjust stuff with my iPad attached to my mic stand. I'm tired of schlepping Xtra stuff and the setup time it requires, also bending over to tweak your pedals is getting to be a pain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WOW! Is there anything this amp can't do? Just hooked up my Taylor acoustic. Pick tube preamp some fx and bamb, sounds like my fender acoustisonic but better with built in fx. Next up the full tilt bozo. Playing live with my electric and acoustic hooked up xlr out to mixer and monitor feed back into my Fh1500.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WOW! Is there anything this amp can't do? Just hooked up my Taylor acoustic. Pick tube preamp some fx and bamb, sounds like my fender acoustisonic but better with built in fx. Next up the full tilt bozo. Playing live with my electric and acoustic hooked up xlr out to mixer and monitor feed back into my Fh1500.

Great! Please make sure you have updated the firmware (http://line6.com/software/  -> software-> line6 updater) because we have just changed the audio routing so that the Monitor Inputs do not go to the Main Outs to prevent a feedback loop with a mixing console. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great! Please make sure you have updated the firmware (http://line6.com/software/ -> software-> line6 updater) because we have just changed the audio routing so that the Monitor Inputs do not go to the Main Outs to prevent a feedback loop with a mixing console.

Is there a way to choose that setting? I intend to primarily use my FH1500 with Helix plugged into the monitor inputs, and would very much want the signal to continue out the main XLR outs on the FH1500...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Is that the latest FW 1.01 updater 1.07? I did update to latest one you show, when I first bought unit awhile back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great! Please make sure you have updated the firmware (http://line6.com/software/ -> software-> line6 updater) because we have just changed the audio routing so that the Monitor Inputs do not go to the Main Outs to prevent a feedback loop with a mixing console.

While I think this is an excellent idea when using the FH1500 as intended - with a guitar plugged into it, and a monitor return, that makes total sense. I am just glad that I didn't update the firmware yet! I would like whatever the improvements are - 'Improved performance at high volume levels'

 

But I definitely still need the monitor (Helix) in to be able to be routed to the main XLR outs... I suppose the work around would be use 1/4" cables and make a blank patch with an FX loop block. Not a terrible option.. Allows the XLR to come out of the Helix instead of the FH1500.

 

But not ideal. Sticking with the original firmware for now, unless someone can clarify if that option - to disable the monitor in being routed to the XLR out - can be 'chosen' not forced with the firmware.

 

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We do intend to give you an option, we just need a bit to do the work.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We do intend to give you an option, we just need a bit to do the work.

 

Good enough for me! :) Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But I definitely still need the monitor (Helix) in to be able to be routed to the main XLR outs... I suppose the work around would be use 1/4" cables and make a blank patch with an FX loop block. Not a terrible option.. Allows the XLR to come out of the Helix instead of the FH1500.

 

 

Yes I need to monitor the Helix in a FH 1500 and route this to the main XLR outs as well, but as far as a guitar input to the FH-1500 goes, I haven't heard anyone use the "buffered out" of the Helix rack unit into the FH 1500 guitar input. I assume that this would work well too?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes I need to monitor the Helix in a FH 1500 and route this to the main XLR outs as well, but as far as a guitar input to the FH-1500 goes, I haven't heard anyone use the "buffered out" of the Helix rack unit into the FH 1500 guitar input. I assume that this would work well too?

Yes; I did something similar. I ran the outputs from my G70 wireless to Helix and to FH1500 guitar in, while also sending the XLR from Helix to the FH1500.

 

I did up some parallel tones, blending the FH1500 + Helix patches. I think I got some cool overlap, but it adds a considerable level of complexity and dual unit patch volume leveling.

 

I think I will experiment more with some kind of post amp model, pre wet fx send from Helix, maybe toggle that send with an on/off fs on Helix, not sure. I really Need to test it, and band jam got cancelled for this Friday!!! :(

 

Gonna go get my amp and bring it home, test this stuff out properly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Im considering using cleans from the FH and then bringing in some Distorted tones on top from Helix via a volume pedal- stuff like this. I do like the tones from the Firehawk 1500 BTW, I have it tilted back and the AC-30 TB is just to die for...

 

 

Edited: Just spent 2 hours with it this morning. Its my 1st day off work to have the time. I DL'ed a Clean Fender from the Tone locker and tweaked it to my liking. Man what a organic and good Fender sound! Keeper....

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, guys here's the short of it, there is no need to schlep extra items to your gig, helix or otherwise. This amp stands alone as one of the best sounding user interface friendly amps I have ever played. I now have been gigging out with this since I purchased it, and I'll pat my self on the back. I was one of the first. No disrespect to those trying to get their helix and the like to sound good thru the endless search of the right amp/monitor combos. Just run this amp on its own. And in a band mix it's stellar. What more do you need it's a great modeler, and an amp and a monitor if needed all in one. Plug your Mkii short board in or better yet the new fbv3 and a million presets at your feet, ok maybe not that many but enough. :-)

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For those using the FBV3 w the 1500...how is the "lag" time when switching from one amp model/setting to another? Comparable to switching channels on a traditional 2 channel amp? Thanks!

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fbv3 is not out yet till mid April. I have had one on preorder since they announced it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh, another thing the fh1500 does better.... It's user friendly with different FOH boards phantom on off it doesn't seem to effect the xlr line out tone. My helix was a mess line out with phantom power on at board had to have phantom power blocker etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm expecting my 1500 in the mail today! Any tips on what to expect/look out for? Tips for day 1?! FBV3 getting delivered tomorrow. Pumped. I want to hear any and all feedback from those who've had this amp for the last few months. Thanks!

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×