Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
dreamkass

Helix as a Home Studio in a box?

Recommended Posts

I'm back playing guitar after about 10 years hiatus, I owned a Mesa Trem-O-Verb Dual Rectifier before, now I bough an L6 AMPLIFi 150, it does okay but I don't like the controls with the iPad that much, anyways I'm into sparkling clean to djent style tones. This is for Home Recording (Guitars, Bass and Vocals) and just having some fun, no jamming plans so far...

 

So the plan was to get a nice tube amp, probably a Mesa Rectifier and a Cab but I'm been researching for months on different options on amp & FX modeling. Problem is that in my area (Canada) local music store don't carry much mid to high stuff in stock, so comparing stuff side by side like its was years ago in a store is not possible anymore...  :(

 

Right now I own:

  • An L6 AMPLIFi 150 wich I think could be used as an FRFR right but in mono using a no amp, no cab patch right with the Helix? But having a Stereo setup would be real nice  :)
  • Apogee Quartet, not used much, tried PC/MAC based Amp Modeller like BIAS but too much latency for practice, I might sell this if I can use the Helix like an audio interface?

I did had an opportunity to try one Helix for about 1 hour in a store thru a Fender Twin Reverb and Headphones, it did sound nice and it was simple to figure out.

 

Here's the plan

 

Helix + Using 2 Studio Monitors, I'm thinking of getting JBL LSR308 and/or AMPLIFi 150 as an FRFR

Using the Helix as a Audio interface with my MacBook Pro and Logic Pro X.

Selling the Apogee Quartet for more funds for other gear  ;)

 

I could always add real AMP using 4CM or FRFR Cab down the line.

 

I'd like to know if this sound right before putting about 2600$ CND into this project.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, that absolutely sounds right. For home studio I would definitely go with the studio monitors, with the option of FRFR cab down the line. Helix is a great audio interface with its 8 usb channels, including a dry signal option for the guitar and mic inputs. It will serve you well for guitar, bass, and vocals as well as additional audio equipment such as keyboards.

 

Helix is not a midi interface, however. If you're into that you'll need a separate midi interface.

 

And don't forget a good set of studio headphones.......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You mean SHURE, not SONY right? They look like very good phones - should be great with Helix.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If BIAS has too much latency, there's possibly something wrong with your setup. On Mac, just make sure the buffers are set small in the app that is hosting BIAS (likely Logic or MainStage). On a modern computer, latency in an amp modeler like BIAS FX or S-Gear should be unnoticeable. 

 

If you use a Mac then you might consider keeping the Apogee Quartet for a while for two reasons. First Helix doesn't yet play well with Mac OS X 10.11, clock drift renders it useless as an audio device. This should get fixed eventually by Line6 and/or Apple, but right now, you need other options. Second, Mac OS X lets you create aggregate devices synchronized by a single clock. This gives you additional inputs and convenience, as well as a way to solve the Helix clock drift on Mac OS X. Just create an aggregate device with Helix and Apogee Quartet, and set Apogee Quartet as the clock source in the Audio/MIDI Setup app. Use that aggregate device in Logic or MainStage, and Helix works great. Plus you have the Apogee Quartet inputs and outputs too which might be convenient in your setup.

 

Regarding recording in Logic, I still prefer S-Gear over Helix. The tones are somewhat better (although that's a matter of opinion, Helix is great too), but the ease of re-amping with a VST or AU plugin is pretty compelling. Only problem is S-Gear doesn't have any front of the amp effects (yet). Note that Helix makes a nice pedalboard for front of the amp effects into S-Gear, and MIDI control of S-Gear in Logic or MainStage. Lots of options and the best of both worlds. I really like them both, and together the whole is even greater than the sum of the parts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That might be a show stopper, I could aggregate with the Quartet but the idea was to replace it with the Helix. Hopefully this bug is on the high priority fix list?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This all depends on your needs and if the Helix integrates with your other studio gear.  I've gotten rid of just about all my gear, i.e. tube amps/pedals/etc, and am using the Helix pretty much exclusively.  I'm PC based so the Helix works great...if you are Mac based then the Helix may not be a good choice until the driver issues are resolved. Helix is being updated by Line6 for the long haul so you will either go a different direction today or go with the Helix now and live through the growing pains....the Helix is an excellent unit and think it will only get better over time....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Take your MacBook to the store and connect it via usb and give it a try (you don;t need to install any software or drivers).

 

Test it out for 10 minutes, if you are getting decent audio with no corruption after this time then you will be fine.

 

The USB doesn't work here for me on 10.10, never mind 10.11. Tried on two different Macs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Apparently the Audio issues is fixed with El Captain 10.10.4? I've sold the Apogee Quartet, just awaiting the final payment and then I'll pull the trigger on something  ;)  

 

This week I've finally was able to try one of the tube amps I had my eye on, EVH 5150 III 50 watt Head \o/, nice clean compared to a rectifier and a OMG GAIN maybe too much :blink:  I'm looking for sparkling cleans to djent type tones. Also tried a Rectifier Mini Head/

 

So choices so far:

 

Setup 1 - about ~2700$ the bundle tax in

EVH 5150 III 50 watt Head + Mesa Rectifier 2 x 12 Vintage + a couple of required pedals (NS-2 Noise Reducer + MXR Bass Comp + Maxon OD808 as a boost) for a nice djent type tone, the 5153 also has a nice clean compared to a rectifier.

+ Free mini pedaltrain + power + cables in a bundle

+ Tubes!!! \o/

- No Recording @ first

 

Setup 2 – about 3000$ with a Furman M-8DX

Line 6 Helix + Studio Monitors

Option 1 a pair of Yamaha HS7 @ 350$/each - Tried with the Helix, it sounded awesome

Option 2 a pair of Neumann KH120 @ 650-799$/each - Tried with the Helix, Awesomer? are they worth twice the price?  :rolleyes:  

Also tried the JBL LSR308 (I did find them dull)

A buddy recommended the Focal Alpha 50 but I would have to source them elsewhere and hope for the best, they are 350$/each

+ All-in-One Practice/Studio

- No Tubes

But I could always had an Amp Head + CAB, Tube Preamps and/or FRFR down the road when GAS $ becomes available again!

 

Setup 3 $$$$$$$$$$

Axe-FX 2 XL+ and Studio Monitors

+ Community

+ Periphery made patches and more

+ Well endorsed by pros

- Can do an All-in-One Practice/Studio using USB but just guitars and bass I think

- OMG $$$

- would have to cheap out some monitors

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Running a UA Apollo on a iMac here, and I plan on using Mackie 824's for the studio monitors, and then a Firehawk 1500 with Helix in stand alone or stage use. BTW- I think the Firehawk 1500 is just an awesome combo/FRFR amp guys!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I went for best of both world !!!

  • Helix
  • EVH 5150 III 50 watt Head
  • Used Line 6 DT50 4x12 Cab (2 x V30 and 2 x G12H90) for 300$ CDN score?
  • and a nice pair of Yamaha HS8 (more bottom \o/)

I'll use the Helix standalone and 4CM

 

Back to playing with toys!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...