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willsmythe37

Current state of the very tempting Line 6 Helix - Device questions

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Hello all,

I don't usually frequent gear forums so I apologise if my forum etiquette is sub standard.

I've been really excited about the Helix since the reveal of the device. I've been waiting for you guys to drop a new modern unit since the HD500x.

So, I've been nurturing use of a Pod XT for many years now and it has served my playing routine greatly since purchase. No to mention that I've had very little problems with the unit. I hit my tone limit a long time ago. I need more control over the signal chain to be able to really suss my guitar tone out.

I'm seriously tempted to take the plunge on the Helix and have the funds to do so. I have my doubts though, especially considering it is such a great deal of money to drop on a pedal.

Could I trouble some knowledgable users with some questions?

1) Line 6 edit
I think I saw that Line 6 released a "Gear Box" Win/mac user interface for the Helix unit. How is this coming along, is it good quality? I can't find any screen shots at all. Nobody is hailing it as god's gift, if it has been released.
I understand the larger display and functionality might completely over-rule the use of something like this.
I'm curious as to it's current state of play.

2) Patch latency
This is something that's been raised a few times on here. I understand the nature of loading process for patches. As I've dealt with the XT live, I do understand THIS IS modelling.
With the XT, there was a noticeable delay in switching patches. It wasn't terrible but it was noticeable. I'd argue it is literally the longest patch latency I'd be willing to put up with.
Can anyone clarify if it is an improvement?
Some have said the time it takes to load a patch is directly related to the amount of "blocks" you have in your patches.
I'm not looking for multiple cabs and amps per patch.

The XT had
Comp, Gate, EQ, Amp Sim, Cab, Delay, Mod, ​Reverb.
Considering that as a base line. What sort of latency are we looking at as standard? Better or worse? Painfully delayed?

3) Further talking about patches delays.
Some have suggested loading everything into one patch and using that?
I saw Glen Delaune's, 3 channel amp patch and I wasn't THAT sold on the "method".
Surely you can run into instances where both, your clean channel is running and your boost is on?
Surely your tone is going to more of a compromise instead of what you actually want to here?

4) Do custom IR's perform better or worse re: quality and patch latency?

5) Spreading blocks over to "Both CPU processors"?
How is this actually done? Do you run the amp and cab on a separate line with links between.
How effective is this reduction?

6) Direct into a Tube Amp
I use a 2x12 Fender Hot Rod Deville.
Can anyone elaborate as to how will this pedal plays with standard Tube Amps. I don't need a processed video from Chappers, I've seen it already. You know what I mean.
My query is the ability to sculp the sound and fix mushyness. Sustain at volume, deliberate feedback etc.

7) Some people in other posts have suggested using 8 Template <02c ... XXXXX as a base line for your tones, to avoid latency problems.
I don't own one yet, so I can't exactly investigate as to what these patch templates have to offer.
Can anyone elaborate as to what these templates have to offer and how they work?


I know there's a lot going on above regarding my questions.
If you'd be so kind as to weigh in where possible, I'm sure others will review this thread to help put minds at ease.
Please be as honest, clear and descriptive as possible

I know it's a pain... although they're not "Million dollar" questions, they are the "Thousand dollar" questions that I would really appreciate clear answers for.

I really appreciete you taking the time to review this thread.

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1) Line 6 edit

I think I saw that Line 6 released a "Gear Box" Win/mac user interface for the Helix unit. How is this coming along, is it good quality? I can't find any screen shots at all. Nobody is hailing it as god's gift, if it has been released.

I understand the larger display and functionality might completely over-rule the use of something like this.

I'm curious as to it's current state of play.

 

So far, no one really knows the status of the editor for Helix outside of Line 6.

 

 

 2) Patch latency

This is something that's been raised a few times on here. I understand the nature of loading process for patches. As I've dealt with the XT live, I do understand THIS IS modelling.

With the XT, there was a noticeable delay in switching patches. It wasn't terrible but it was noticeable. I'd argue it is literally the longest patch latency I'd be willing to put up with.

Can anyone clarify if it is an improvement?

Some have said the time it takes to load a patch is directly related to the amount of "blocks" you have in your patches.

I'm not looking for multiple cabs and amps per patch.

 

 

As with all modelers, there is a slight delay going from patch to patch. I guess I've learned to work around it because it's a total non-issue for me.

 

 

 

 

 

The XT had

Comp, Gate, EQ, Amp Sim, Cab, Delay, Mod, ​Reverb.

Considering that as a base line. What sort of latency are we looking at as standard? Better or worse? Painfully delayed?

 

Ah, actual latency.  No, none that I can perceive.

 

 

 

 

 

3) Further talking about patches delays.

Some have suggested loading everything into one patch and using that?

I saw Glen Delaune's, 3 channel amp patch and I wasn't THAT sold on the "method".

Surely you can run into instances where both, your clean channel is running and your boost is on?

Surely your tone is going to more of a compromise instead of what you actually want to here?

 

Yeah, I don't agree with doing that either. The most I want to do is have two types of sounds in one patch and  A/B switch between them.

 

 

 

 

4) Do custom IR's perform better or worse re: quality and patch latency?

 

Not that I can tell.

 

 

 

 

5) Spreading blocks over to "Both CPU processors"?

How is this actually done? Do you run the amp and cab on a separate line with links between.

How effective is this reduction?

 

One way is to run the output of Path 1 into Path 2. The amp and cab can pretty much go wherever.

 

 

 

 

6) Direct into a Tube Amp

I use a 2x12 Fender Hot Rod Deville.

Can anyone elaborate as to how will this pedal plays with standard Tube Amps. I don't need a processed video from Chappers, I've seen it already. You know what I mean.

My query is the ability to sculp the sound and fix mushyness. Sustain at volume, deliberate feedback etc

 

I'll likely get a lot of push-back on this but I'm of the mindset that it's simply not a good idea to run a modeler, especially one as good as the Helix is, into anything other than a full range system. An amp is just going to, as you put it, mush up the FX and it'll never give the true sound that the Helix is trying to put out.

 

 

 

 

7) Some people in other posts have suggested using 8 Template <02c ... XXXXX as a base line for your tones, to avoid latency problems.

I don't own one yet, so I can't exactly investigate as to what these patch templates have to offer.

Can anyone elaborate as to what these templates have to offer and how they work?

 

I think that's the Path 1a/1b A/B switching setup. All it does is redirects the signal to either A or B so yeah there's no delay.

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Let me give you some short answers till the tech dudes explain further..

 

1.  The Editor is due out shortly.. there is a long thread about it, but bottom line..  I saw it at NAMM, but it wasn't quite ready and will be soon.

 

2.  The Patch Latency... some converting from other and/or older units say there is.  Two points on this.  It depends on what is loaded in the patches AND most importantly...  Helix is a different animal.  In MOST of the cases I have seen, switching the patch could be AVOIDED by creative use of the routing and signal paths where you just swtich path instead of patch.  While on this point.. I will also add that there are many tips and tricks for reducing DSP load... little things like why add a gain block when you can just control the gain of any of the current blocks with a switch or pedal?   FWIW your effects list is pretty basic.

 

3.  Glen and also Scott (TheHelixChannel) do some amazing patches.  I use Scott's stuff to learn how to be thrifty on DSP useage and get amazing tone.

If you want to add boost, just find an appropriate parameter (gain or level) of an existing block and route it to a switch or pedal. 

 

4.  Depends on the IR and everything else.

 

5.  I'll let someone else handle this.. But essentially in each patch you start with 2 paths, which each have 2 signal chains.

 

6.  Again, I'll leave this to someone else.  But yes..  you can control just about every aspect of your signal.

 

7.  I'll leave to someone else.

 

Bottom line.  Helix is a different animal.  While it's touted as a modeler, you must remember you are modeling at component level.  It's also designed to run through some sort of FRFR system, but also plays well with regular amps and cabs.  

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1. Editor is right around the corner. Frank said end of month and hasn't backed off that!

2. You might not have to worry about patch latency. You can EASILY have the equivalent of 2, 3, or 4 signal chains in there in multiple ways so that you can switch FX on and off and change settings of them with a footswitch. for me, one patch gets me through a song and usually a set. Patch latency does depend on how much is being loaded, but the latest Rack firmwares at least have been noticeably quicker in switching.

 

3. It has not been a problem for me at all. I get what took me 3 patches on HD 500 and get them into just one with Helix easy.

 

4. Custom IRs are < using dual cabs in the box imho. I don't even bother with them anymore except for my acoustic sound.

 

5. Path 1 is processor A, path 2 is processor B. Path 2 has a little more horsepower because OS stuff is in Processor 1.

 

6. I'll let others address this, as I don't use any amps anymore.

 

7. Basically, you have multiple signal chains within a patch, up to 4, but realistically 2 or 1 with some side chains that might change. For instance, you could hit one pedal and switch between two different versions of a bunch of pedal settings.

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+1 to what PeterHamm said plus:

 

6.  Depending on my mood, I've been running Helix into the front of amps, in the 4-cable method and to a PA speaker.  Sometimes I do all 3 at once.  It sounds amazing in every one of these configurations.  As an effects only unit going directly into the front of an amp it's awesome.   I prefer the 4 cable method though, with a standard amp, which provides more options.  For my DT25 I prefer using the L6 Link.

 

The amps I've experimented with, so far, are the DT25, a BlackStar ID30:TVP, a Vetta II and a Randall RH100.  Each of them sounded great.

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5. Path 1 is processor A, path 2 is processor B. Path 2 has a little more horsepower because OS stuff is in Processor 1.

 

.

Son of a gun - that had never occurred to me.  Interesting point.....

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Son of a gun - that had never occurred to me.  Interesting point.....

 

Is this a fact?   It just seems odd that the OS would be interfering with the DSP at all.   I'm familiar enough with computer design to question this... and if it is as stated, I'd be curious why as I'm sure they would have a good reason.

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Is this a fact?   It just seems odd that the OS would be interfering with the DSP at all.   I'm familiar enough with computer design to question this... and if it is as stated, I'd be curious why as I'm sure they would have a good reason.

 

Don't remember where I heard it, but it was reliable. There's OS housekeeping and stuff that happens in path 1. It doesn't make a big difference, though, iirc...

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Thanks so much for such enthusiastic informative responses all.

I'll try and respond to each person individually.

This is going to take a while!

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Quote

 

 

1) Line 6 edit
I think I saw that Line 6 released a "Gear Box" Win/mac user interface for the Helix unit. How is this coming along, is it good quality? I can't find any screen shots at all. Nobody is hailing it as god's gift, if it has been released.
I understand the larger display and functionality might completely over-rule the use of something like this.
I'm curious as to it's current state of play.

 

Hideout's Qoute: So far, no one really knows the status of the editor for Helix outside of Line 6.
Mike SKB: The Editor is due out shortly.. there is a long thread about it, but bottom line..  I saw it at NAMM, but it wasn't quite ready and will be soon.
Peter Hamm's Qoute: The Editor is due out shortly.. there is a long thread about it, but bottom line..  I saw it at NAMM, but it wasn't quite ready and will be soon.

My response:  I'm glad there is something actually on the way. The longer it takes, the better it will be. It's not a deal breaker, just knowing it's in the pipeline is a great thing.

 

Quote

 

 2) Patch latency
This is something that's been raised a few times on here. I understand the nature of loading process for patches. As I've dealt with the XT live, I do understand THIS IS modelling.
With the XT, there was a noticeable delay in switching patches. It wasn't terrible but it was noticeable. I'd argue it is literally the longest patch latency I'd be willing to put up with.
Can anyone clarify if it is an improvement?
Some have said the time it takes to load a patch is directly related to the amount of "blocks" you have in your patches.
I'm not looking for multiple cabs and amps per patch.

 

 

 

Hideout: As with all modelers, there is a slight delay going from patch to patch. I guess I've learned to work around it because it's a total non-issue for me.

Mike SKB: The Patch Latency... some converting from other and/or older units say there is.  Two points on this.  It depends on what is loaded in the patches AND most importantly...  Helix is a different animal.  In MOST of the cases I have seen, switching the patch could be AVOIDED by creative use of the routing and signal paths where you just switch path instead of patch.  While on this point.. I will also add that there are many tips and tricks for reducing DSP load... little things like why add a gain block when you can just control the gain of any of the current blocks with a switch or pedal?   FWIW your effects list is pretty basic.

PeterHamm: You might not have to worry about patch latency. You can EASILY have the equivalent of 2, 3, or 4 signal chains in there in multiple ways so that you can switch FX on and off and change settings of them with a footswitch. for me, one patch gets me through a song and usually a set. Patch latency does depend on how much is being loaded, but the latest Rack firmwares at least have been noticeably quicker in switching.

My Response: Thank you all. Quiet different responses here.
There seems to be divided opinions. In my own mind, I like to press very little to switch channels. I prefer just a one-button alteration to switch between preset patches or parameters. Currently I run.

Currently I run (Without elaborating too much)

a) Clean                                        - Delays, medium reverbs, Amp Sims, Cab, Gate, Comp, EQ
b ) High Gain Rhythm                    -  Octava, short reverbs, Amp Sims, Cab, Gate, Comp, EQ
c) High Gain Rhythm/Lead boost  - Volume boost, Sustain, Short reverb, Amp, Cab, Comp, EQ Wah
d) Lead                                          - Large delays, Reverbs, Gates, Comp, Sustain, Wah, EQ, Volume Boost, Amp, Cab

For what I like to do, I don't want to press multiple buttons to switch in between my settings. Life shouldn't be difficult of course!

I think I'm struggling to get my head around:
programable switches - Turning on/off multiple effects etc
(If you A/B switched to another line, will the stay enabled, or if you switch away, to they return to a default setting?)

Peterhamm, was talking about 2/3/4 signal chains. Is there a way of assigning multiple adjustments {within a patch} to a single button?
I don't understand how an A/B switch (or multiple A/B's) can used to switch between 4 separate signal chains? (Are you referring to the 4 sends?)
To simplify what I'm referring to. 4x one touch switches, switching within a single patch?

 

Quote

 

 

3) Further talking about patches delays.
Some have suggested loading everything into one patch and using that?
I saw Glen Delaune's, 3 channel amp patch and I wasn't THAT sold on the "method".
Surely you can run into instances where both, your clean channel is running and your boost is on?
Surely your tone is going to more of a compromise instead of what you actually want to here?

 

Hideout: Yeah, I don't agree with doing that either. The most I want to do is have two types of sounds in one patch and  A/B switch between them.
 

Mike SKB: Glen and also Scott (TheHelixChannel) do some amazing patches.  I use Scott's stuff to learn how to be thrifty on DSP useage and get amazing tone.

If you want to add boost, just find an appropriate parameter (gain or level) of an existing block and route it to a switch or pedal. 

PeterHAMM: It has not been a problem for me at all. I get what took me 3 patches on HD 500 and get them into just one with Helix easy.

My response: By the sounds of it, there is plenty of headroom to play with and you should be able to squeeze even more versatility into your patches. I'm wondering if part of my difficulty contemplating the routing etc, is down to the way the systems changed when the HD500 was introduced to the mix. The XT didn't give you freedom to adjust/
visualise the positioning of many of it's emulated components. It did however allow for entirely different settings and parameter settings to be stored as a patch. Then a one button switch with tolerable latency/patch-change-delay, was incurred.
As the Helix is emulating everything in an individual, modular manner. Perhaps I need to familiarise myself with the traditional 20x Stomp box pedal board mentality?

 

Quote

 

 

4) Do custom IR's perform better or worse re: quality and patch latency?

 

Hideout: Not that I can tell.
Mike SKB : Depends on the IR and everything else.
PeterHamm : 
Custom IRs are < using dual cabs in the box imho. I don't even bother with them anymore except for my acoustic sound.

My response: So regarding patch change latency, the delay is similar then. I would probably go with Peter's advise here. Unless I'm recording in the home studio where I may opt for something with a bigger spatial emulation. I hear the Piezo IR is still in the pipeline too... not a deal breaker for me ;)
 

Quote

 

 

5) Spreading blocks over to "Both CPU processors"?
How is this actually done? Do you run the amp and cab on a separate line with links between.
How effective is this reduction?

 

Hideout: One way is to run the output of Path 1 into Path 2. The amp and cab can pretty much go wherever.

All: Summed

My Response: This seems to be the most logical way of taking care of things, but does this forego the possibility's single stomp preset's within a patch?
I also presume this halves the potential signal chains available?
I'm honestly not trying to be difficult. I expect that with great power, flexibility and versatility in design, the more and more complicated things become.
 

Quote

 

 

6) Direct into a Tube Amp
I use a 2x12 Fender Hot Rod Deville.
Can anyone elaborate as to how will this pedal plays with standard Tube Amps. I don't need a processed video from Chappers, I've seen it already. You know what I mean.
My query is the ability to sculp the sound and fix mushyness. Sustain at volume, deliberate feedback etc

 

Hideout: I'll likely get a lot of push-back on this but I'm of the mindset that it's simply not a good idea to run a modeler, especially one as good as the Helix is, into anything other than a full range system. An amp is just going to, as you put it, mush up the FX and it'll never give the true sound that the Helix is trying to put out.

All : Summed.

My response : Predominantly, I'll record at home direct into the mixer/interface. Live, I'll likely use the guitar amp. I understand for best/accurate representations, FRFR speakers are the way forward. I'm an amp man through and through ;)
Previously with the XT, I could get close to the sound I wanted, I would simply run out of EQ and have to start compromising all over the place. I've been happy with that and I'm not prepared to switch to FRFR speakers. Nice know someone else is in the same boat and it still sounds great.
 

Quote

 

 

7) Some people in other posts have suggested using 8 Template <02c ... XXXXX as a base line for your tones, to avoid latency problems.
I don't own one yet, so I can't exactly investigate as to what these patch templates have to offer.
Can anyone elaborate as to what these templates have to offer and how they work?

 

I think that's the Path 1a/1b A/B switching setup. All it does is redirects the signal to either A or B so yeah there's no delay.
I see, so this preset template might not be the answer?



Summing up all:
It's all very confusing but I think we're getting there.
-Line 6 edit concerns are alleviated. The longer it takes, the better it'll be :P.
-Patch change delay may be tolerable providing you're not trying to load in two amps, two cabs and multiple complicated stomps, effects and routing switchs?
-Similarly to 2) Latency is respective of patch complexity. If you find a way of getting exactly what you want, whilst being reserved in adding blocks, the delay can be minimised. Sounds risky to me. I also wonder if the unit de-loads Amps/Cabs even if the block is present in the next patch?
- IR's have the same effect as separate Cab blocks.
- I think I may need to review control block availability and their use. I'm not sure simple A/B switches will be what I'm envisioning? Can anyone elaborate as to the actions of currently stomped switches, when switching between different groups of stomp boxes? when switching away from a signal chain, can you adjust whether stomps return to default positions? (Helping to prevent "pedal tap dancing".
- I don't fear using it with a Tube amp ;)
- Im still unsure whether one stomp switching is possible?

A massive thank you to all who have taken part in this discussion.
I apologise again for my horrendous forum etiquette and this huge body of text.
I'm most gracious for your assistance and the sharing of knowledge and experience with the unit.




 

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Quote from willsmyth37 - Can anyone elaborate as to the actions of currently stomped switches, when switching between different groups of stomp boxes? when switching away from a signal chain, can you adjust whether stomps return to default positions? (Helping to prevent "pedal tap dancing". -

 

I think you are refering to a scene mode where the state of multiple pedals can be recalled by a single switch. Currently, Helix only toggles between 2 parameter states. Each switch can do 8 parameters.

 

If a switch is used to change a set of effects, that same switch can only set them back. No other switch can be used. Here is a small example : i have a bit of chorus in a clean tone, i put the chorus on its own switch. When i go to a lead tone i can use a single switch to turn on the Screamer and turn off the chorus. Since the chorus on/off is already assigned to a seperate switch, i toggle the mix level from say 30% to 0%. 2 ways to turn off the chorus. The catch is if i want that same chorus block in the dirty tone, too. Cant in this setup.

 

There are more creative folks then me on this forum, so maybe there are more possibilities, but the scene mode, I believe is what you are looking for.

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This seems to be the most logical way of taking care of things, but does this forego the possibility's single stomp preset's within a patch?

I also presume this halves the potential signal chains available?

 

A single footswitch can be assigned to do things on both paths.  For example, I can set up a patch where Path 1 has 16 effects blocks and feeds into Path 2, which has another 16 blocks and goes to my amp or FRFR solution.  I can have a single footswitch turn off a clean amp in Path 1, turn on a couple effects pedals on either path, turn on an amp in Path 2, change a couple settings on an effect in either path and so on.  Each footswitch can be assigned to do up to 8 things.  It's really amazing.

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So far, no one really knows the status of the editor for Helix outside of Line 6.[/

 

 

 

I'll likely get a lot of push-back on this but I'm of the mindset that it's simply not a good idea to run a modeler, especially one as good as the Helix is, into anything other than a full range system. An amp is just going to, as you put it, mush up the FX and it'll never give the true sound that the Helix is trying to put out.

 

 

 

 

I think that's the Path 1a/1b A/B switching setup. All it does is redirects the signal to either A or B so yeah there's no delay.

Finally someone else dared say it. Lol. Too each their own but this is how I have always felt about modeling. If you plug it into an amp then you just have a very expensive effects box and there are others that function as well and at cheaper there. In fact I would just use my old board. I realize Helix has extras. Multiple routing, amp switching (on some Amps this works) and higher quality effects.

 

I do understand studio use and just wanting to find a way to use it live also.

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Finally someone else dared say it. Lol. Too each their own but this is how I have always felt about modeling. If you plug it into an amp then you just have a very expensive effects box and there are others that function as well and at cheaper there. In fact I would just use my old board. I realize Helix has extras. Multiple routing, amp switching (on some Amps this works) and higher quality effects.

 

I do understand studio use and just wanting to find a way to use it live also.

 

Based on my experience with modelers, I tend to agree. That said, if you use 10 stompboxes in Helix into an amp (which is very very possible) it is STILL cheaper than buying those 10 stompboxes, and easier to re-configure.

 

And... you have the modeling and computer audio/MIDI interface and all that at the same time if you need it at different times.

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Finally someone else dared say it. Lol. Too each their own but this is how I have always felt about modeling. If you plug it into an amp then you just have a very expensive effects box and there are others that function as well and at cheaper there. In fact I would just use my old board. I realize Helix has extras. Multiple routing, amp switching (on some Amps this works) and higher quality effects.

 

I do understand studio use and just wanting to find a way to use it live also.

 

I've been using the Helix for effects only with my amp, personally, I'd say it works very well as a pedalboard replacement. That's not the only way I use it, of course. I do go direct a lot of the time as well. I guess the thing is, for me, the Helix has been the only modeler where I've felt I can truly use it as a pedalboard replacement and not have to use any other effects. I haven't used my pedalboard for over a month now, and that's never really happened before. I also believe that Helix as a pedalboard replacement will only get better as development moves forward.

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Quote from willsmyth37 - Can anyone elaborate as to the actions of currently stomped switches, when switching between different groups of stomp boxes? when switching away from a signal chain, can you adjust whether stomps return to default positions? (Helping to prevent "pedal tap dancing". -

 

I think you are refering to a scene mode where the state of multiple pedals can be recalled by a single switch. Currently, Helix only toggles between 2 parameter states. Each switch can do 8 parameters.

 

If a switch is used to change a set of effects, that same switch can only set them back. No other switch can be used. Here is a small example : i have a bit of chorus in a clean tone, i put the chorus on its own switch. When i go to a lead tone i can use a single switch to turn on the Screamer and turn off the chorus. Since the chorus on/off is already assigned to a seperate switch, i toggle the mix level from say 30% to 0%. 2 ways to turn off the chorus. The catch is if i want that same chorus block in the dirty tone, too. Cant in this setup.

 

There are more creative folks then me on this forum, so maybe there are more possibilities, but the scene mode, I believe is what you are looking for.

Re: Scene mode

This is interesting. So you could in theory narrow down multiple pedal presses down to two?

 

I wonder if this image will attach?

 

- So, A/B to switch between two different Amps

- Different Gate/Comp settings as required per channel.

- A Lead boost switch (Disabling other verbs and delays, enabling specifics stomps on both channels.)

- Still have individual pedals per channel.

 

Would this work?

So essentially you have one lead boost button that can be turned on/off.

The A/B switch to change back to clean.

 

To go from High-gain-Lead to Clean, it's two switches.

To go from High-gain-Rhythm to Clea-Lead-Boost is two switches

To go from Lead, to lead it's one switch.

To go from Clean rhythm to High-Gain Rhythm, it's one switch.

 

 

Also, I missed out EQ's from each channel.

Can you assign two wah to the expression pedal? Or would I put this before the A/B split?

 

Side note: I didn't give the signal chain THAT much thought. However it is raising other questions :S

 

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Re: Scene mode

This is interesting. So you could in theory narrow down multiple pedal presses down to two?

 

I wonder if this image will attach?

 

- So, A/B to switch between two different Amps

- Different Gate/Comp settings as required per channel.

- A Lead boost switch (Disabling other verbs and delays, enabling specifics stomps on both channels.)

- Still have individual pedals per channel.

 

Would this work?

So essentially you have one lead boost button that can be turned on/off.

The A/B switch to change back to clean.

 

To go from High-gain-Lead to Clean, it's two switches.

To go from High-gain-Rhythm to Clea-Lead-Boost is two switches

To go from Lead, to lead it's one switch.

To go from Clean rhythm to High-Gain Rhythm, it's one switch.

 

 

Also, I missed out EQ's from each channel.

Can you assign two wah to the expression pedal? Or would I put this before the A/B split?

 

Side note: I didn't give the signal chain THAT much thought. However it is raising other questions :S

 

2kQFHpvO.png

 

That's easily achievable with Helix.  Actually, that's pretty simple compared to some of the patches I've seen (and built).

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That's easily achievable with Helix. Actually, that's pretty simple compared to some of the patches I've seen (and built).

It's good to know that that sort of thing will actually work.

 

The thing that's bugging me is:

Say I have a tune where I bust out 3 lead breaks.

1st) Say I want to switch from (rhythm clean) to (lead high-gain) ... That's two presses to switch too the lead, and back, each point.

2nd) is a middle-8 section, this time I want to use a harmoniser too: instead of adding another pedal press to the mix, I'll setup another custom pedal to add and remove fx blocks. Still 2buttons in and2 out.

3rd) Somebody mentioned earlier that there might be a limit to the amount of parameters pedals/scenes that can be used? What about if I wanted to do a similar thing, this time with a octaves and an whammy. I suppose, we'd be setting up a 3rd pedal, to help minimise the pedal presses?

 

 

If there's a limit to amount of programmable pedals, does that mean we have to start duplicating patches and making minor alterations. 1 patch for 3 songs or something?

 

Also the image I drew wasn't supposed to be difficult. It was just an example.

 

In all fairness, I suppose in a compositional perspective, a player is more likely to change in a linear fashion around the channels.

 

So.

Clean rhythm.

High gain rhythm

High gain lead

High gain rhythm

Clean

Clean lead.

 

I imagine there will still be difficulty, removing a lead boost (interrupting delays and reverbs) then switching to cleans with different verbs and delays. Each button-press interrupting the effect behaviour?

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hmmm....

 

It's like

 

1) have only barebone setups in 4 channels (one bank) and accept a penalty of patch change time.

 

2) have an elaborate patch, with all the bells and whistles, but in the most drastic moments expect to have to bosh a couple of pedals before leaning towards your wah wag pedal. At the end of the section, cancel your wah, remove lead boost and switch your A/B back over.

 

(Sorry guys, on the mobile phone this time)

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Having to press multiple switches to get between tones makes the short pause from a patch change seem more palatable.

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Having to press multiple switches to get between tones makes the short pause from a patch change seem more palatable.

 

yes... that and... seriously, with an pedal rig (or most everything else), you'd be tap dancing even more.

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Hello all,

Just a quick message to to thank you for all your time spent reading through my essays.

I'm actually going to pop over to PMT in Cambridge, UK and put a deposit down on a Helix.

Apparently I'm looking at a waiting list of 4 weeks... they have said that there is a 30 day grace period so if I don't get on with it, then I can take it back (providing it's in pristine condition).

I'm sort of excited but also feeling down right awkward about it.

Here goes nothing eh?
 

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Hello all,

 

Just a quick message to to thank you for all your time spent reading through my essays.

 

I'm actually going to pop over to PMT in Cambridge, UK and put a deposit down on a Helix.

 

Apparently I'm looking at a waiting list of 4 weeks... they have said that there is a 30 day grace period so if I don't get on with it, then I can take it back (providing it's in pristine condition).

 

I'm sort of excited but also feeling down right awkward about it.

 

Here goes nothing eh?

 

 

I think you'll be quite impressed.  Congratulations.

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Hello all.

 

So... Today... I got my hands on a Helix.

 

Spent a fair old bit of time rocking through the stock presets. I kinda realisedafter a couple of hours, that I wasn't going to "finish" then so decided to hop onto a fresh preset.

 

I just ran through the 1/4 out into a mixer/studio monitors and I was quiete impressed.

 

I stumbled upon a slight boo boo, where everything was super fizzy. Turned out I'd managed to run a delay block around the selected cab.

 

With regards to patch change time, it wasn't quiete as bad as some have made out.

It actually bears resemblance to my old pod XT.

So just tolerable, it's a shame there wasn't a noticeable improvement. I won't know what it's like really until I'm at practice.

 

I managed to set up my 'standard' 4 channel setup. I'm wondering if removing unused blocks will speed things up?

 

Next step is to try it through an amp.

I know 4 cable method is the way to go, but it kinda means I'll need to invest in some new cables.

I'll try 2 cable through a practice amp and see how I get on.

 

Does anyone have any tips. There's no point reinventing the wheel eh?

 

I presume I'll need to change my 1/4 output setting to a mic level signal?

 

Back with the old pod XT, I found that a really nice tone through my studio monitors never transferred well to my amps... But an amp setup, transferred "okay" back to the studio monitors (minor studio tinkering afterwards)

 

Also worth mentioning, with the XT, I used to still use cab emulation.

With the helix, should I use just the pre-amp/head/ or Head&Cab?

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Finally someone else dared say it. Lol. Too each their own but this is how I have always felt about modeling. If you plug it into an amp then you just have a very expensive effects box and there are others that function as well and at cheaper there. In fact I would just use my old board. I realize Helix has extras. Multiple routing, amp switching (on some Amps this works) and higher quality effects.

 

I do understand studio use and just wanting to find a way to use it live also.

Actually, I would have to respectfully disagree to a point. If you are just plug it into the input jack of your amp then I think you are correct, however using it with an amp (or amps) in the 4 cable method (or 7 or 10 cable for multiple amps) with the additional benefits of channel switching and adding the modeled amplifiers direct to a tube power amp, you get a ton of possibilities that go well past being a very expensive effects unit. You get the benefits of modeling, pre and post effects with flexibility in the signal chain, as well as using your real tube amp preamp(s) to integrate into your sound. All with the tone and feel of a real deal tube power amp. Because it is.

 

While I feel modeling has come a long long way, especially with FRFR systems, I'm still a believer in the tone and the feel that comes from bottles.Especially on stage in a good sized room.

 

Plus, now I have a really nice 8x8 recording interface for my Protools setup and can record some amazing sounds direct and silently.

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Also worth mentioning, with the XT, I used to still use cab emulation.

With the helix, should I use just the pre-amp/head/ or Head&Cab?

 

Others covered most of the rest.   If you are going into the front of a guitar amp, the simple answer is do whatever sounds best.  I personally wouldn't use any amp/cab modeling going into the front of a real guitar amp, but... nothing wrong with having an enhanced signal.  I personally like some of the "distortion" of the amps in the Helix and in those cases just use the amp model as my "distortion" pedal.   

 

Bottom line, do what sounds good.  

 

I think i have a best of both worlds rig.  My cabinet has guitar speakers that are known for that flat response over the guitar frequency range.  I seem to be getting, at least to my ears, the intent of the models.  I have tried several amps, solid-state and tube to drive the speakers, and frankly there is little difference except that I can "color" the signal with a stereo tube amp if I'm not careful so I have been sticking with solid-state for now.

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On the issue of patch change latency, it's a total non-issue for me because I take a completely different approach, which was necessitated by being a singer. I go from my rhythm sound to my lead sound almost exclusively with the exp pedal - push it forward for the louder lead sound, or different rhythm sound (as needed for the tune). I do this because I need to stay on the mic a lot and looking down at switches when you're on the mic sucks. My foot easily finds the exp pedals without looking (I use 2 exp). This is also very useful for throwing in a quick line and then reverting back to rhythm. It's way more intuitive than tap dancing switches, trust me.

 

You can program changes to virtually any setting you want - amp knobs, amount of fx, compression, EQ, etc.

 

The other valuable advantage is I can add a little hair and increased volume by pushing part way.

 

And there's NO LATENCY!

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On the issue of patch change latency, it's a total non-issue for me because I take a completely different approach, which was necessitated by being a singer. I go from my rhythm sound to my lead sound almost exclusively with the exp pedal - push it forward for the louder lead sound, or different rhythm sound (as needed for the tune). I do this because I need to stay on the mic a lot and looking down at switches when you're on the mic sucks. My foot easily finds the exp pedals without looking (I use 2 exp). This is also very useful for throwing in a quick line and then reverting back to rhythm. It's way more intuitive than tap dancing switches, trust me.

 

You can program changes to virtually any setting you want - amp knobs, amount of fx, compression, EQ, etc.

 

The other valuable advantage is I can add a little hair and increased volume by pushing part way.

 

And there's NO LATENCY!

 

You are so right about the pedal being easier to find than a footswitch and that is a compelling reason to use the Helix in this manner. I am also a singer and guitarist  but I usually ride the expression pedal for volume adjustments and swells or wah and other effect parameters, so I don't really have it generally available for preset switches. This could certainly work for some scenarios though.  Thanks for the tip!

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Looking back it would turn out I had needn't been so concerned about patch change times.

At the moment I'm using patches that are very light when it comes to effects blocks.

In 4CM with just a Pre-Amp (instead of a/Amp and b/Cab), patch change appears to be pretty damn fast. Yeah... theres a small dropout. Similar if not better to the old Pod XT some content with that.

I'll test other methods out soon... just needed something solid to get through band practice.
Someone suggested instead of using 4CM... to use the Amp and Cab emulations, but go direct into the Power-amp In... (Or effects return).

I'll give that a shot next I reckon!
 

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