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Expression pedal options

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Love my Helix floor model and just got it attached to a Pedal Pad case. (Will post pics later). I think I'd like to get a secondary expression pedal for some extra effects control, amp gain maybe or whatever....

Unfortunately I don't have much space left on the case.  What has worked for you in terms of compatibility for the Helix. Talking about expression pedals only not effects.

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I bought one of the L6 pedals, but I can't recommend it. I'd spring for the Mission pedal.

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+1 for the Mission EP1-L6 also.

 

I'm not sure what other expression pedals offer it, but the Mission has an allen wrench tension adjustment which is very helpful.  Also, the standard wah height lines up with the built in Helix expression pedal pretty well.

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Can't speak for the L6 pedals, but the Mission EP1-L6 is great for most things. If you were planning on using it for volume, I'd say stay away from it because of it's short throw. Works good for wah, whammy and probably other effects where you don't require a great deal of precision. I think of it as a smoother way to transition from min to max for something, as opposed to a sudden jump from min to max using a switch.

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If you get the mission pedal for wah (Highly recommended) , there is a "Helix" Line 6 Mission pedal option out there that has the on-off foot switch. The regular Mission EP1-L6 Mission pedal does NOT. FYI...

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If you get the mission pedal for wah (Highly recommended) , there is a "Helix" Line 6 Mission pedal option out there that has the on-off foot switch. The regular Mission EP1-L6 Mission pedal does NOT. FYI...

 

Keep in mind, that pedal is for Helix Rack specifically. The switch on it won't work with the floor version.

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duncann is correct. Makes me mad. I see no reason why only the rack and controller got the toe switch jack connector. The toe switch with this Mission pedal would have been the best option for wah for the floorboard too. The only other options we have for the floorboard are 1. Assign a wah only one EXP (of the two on board) so you can toggle it off with the floorboard toe switch. 2. Assign wah off to a footswitch (horrible). Might as well haul your actual wah around.

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 I see no reason why only the rack and controller got the toe switch jack connector. 

 

You can't use more than one EXP with a toe switch, so why would you want or need two? It makes sense that you don't have an option to use more than one toe-switch exp. 

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You can't use more than one EXP with a toe switch, so why would you want or need two? It makes sense that you don't have an option to use more than one toe-switch exp. 

 

 

 

If we are being told in this thread that the Misson is not good to use as a volume as the travel is too short, then we need it to be a wah, and use the built in Helix exp as our volume.

 

If we need the Mission to be a wah - we need it to have a toe switch (or to have the auto activate feature on movement that lots of people want)

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Point being is that you don't have the option of using the Mission pedal because the floorboard doesn't support it

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I came from a Dunlop Mister Crybaby Super combo Wah/Volume (which I used mainly for volume, occasionally alternate wah) and a Dunlop 535Q wah. I guess I was used to a shorter throw volume pedal like the Mission EP1-L6. I did have to crank up the tension on the Mission to give me a little resistance for parked volume, plugged into EXP3 jack.

I use the built in Helix pedal and EXP2 assignment for wah, and toe-switch it in. I use the EXP1 assignment for effect parameter control for trem speed, delay, chorus & flanger, filters, etc. if needed.

I could see how making a transition from a longer throw volume pedal like Ernie Ball or Boss/Roland could be awkward.

I saw a post on rewiring a Roland EV-5 to be used as a Helix Exp pedal.

http://line6.com/support/topic/16994-need-expression-pedal-help/?hl=expression+pedal&do=findComment&comment=152555

Another user asked about the Ernie Ball MVP Volume/Gain/expression Pedal, but no one replied.

http://line6.com/support/topic/16994-need-expression-pedal-help/?hl=expression+pedal&do=findComment&comment=152555

So at $130 for the Mission, it may be worth it to some of you really used to a certain type of volume pedal to mod your old one, or pick up another one new or used and have it modded for use as a Helix expression pedal.

Another option to maybe use your existing unmodded volume pedals could be using the $119 MIDI Solutions Pedal controller and leveraging Helix MIDI Exp pedal emulation CC input 1, 2, or 3. The MIDI Sol pedal controller comes with software to set the CC#. I dont know if Helix provides standard 5V MIDI power though.  There is a pretty easy +5V USB/MIDI cable hack to power its MIDI input if Helix can't

http://www.midisolutions.com/prodped.htm

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/MIDIPC?adpos=1o5&creative=55644138841&device=c&matchtype=&network=g&gclid=CjwKEAjwp-S6BRDj4Z7z2IWUhG8SJAAbqbF34HC4g1S6rzzjuGsUBJqHWDWqXxoUejFWe2XK3yHZyBoCWwbw_wcB

 

+5V USB/MIDI cables hack

 

http://www.danbecker.info/guitars/20151206MIDIPower/index.html

 

MIDI Solutions Power FAQ directing users to the hack...

 

http://www.midisolutions.com/faqs.htm#Power

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Point being is that you don't have the option of using the Mission pedal because the floorboard doesn't support it

 

 

Isn't it possible to plug a the Mission Expression Pedal into Exp2 and the toe switch into the Exp 3 socket? 

 

I am sure if it doesn't work right away it would be very simple to make a little box with a resistor or something to sort it.

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If we are being told in this thread that the Misson is not good to use as a volume as the travel is too short, then we need it to be a wah, and use the built in Helix exp as our volume.

 

If we need the Mission to be a wah - we need it to have a toe switch (or to have the auto activate feature on movement that lots of people want)

 

GREAT point there.

 

I know how I would solve this if I used wah.

 

I'd get a Vox wah and use one of the loops for it, but that's me.

Isn't it possible to plug a the Mission Expression Pedal into Exp2 and the toe switch into the Exp 3 socket? 

 

I am sure if it doesn't work right away it would be very simple to make a little box with a resistor or something to sort it.

 

This is a FANTASTIC idea.

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If we are being told in this thread that the Misson is not good to use as a volume as the travel is too short, then we need it to be a wah, and use the built in Helix exp as our volume.

 

If we need the Mission to be a wah - we need it to have a toe switch (or to have the auto activate feature on movement that lots of people want)

 

You can still have an external expression pedal hooked up while keeping the onboard pedal for EXP1 and EXP2 by plugging the external into the EXP3 jack. If you plug the external into EXP2, the onboard will control EXP1 only. So in either case, you can definitely use the onboard for volume and the external for wah and other stuff. To toggle the wah, or other effect, assigned to the external, just assign it to one of Helix's switches. It's not the same as a toe switch or auto-activation, but still works. Plus there's the other alternative of setting up the wah so that when in the heel position (set mix to a low value), the tone is essentially transparent.

 

Isn't it possible to plug a the Mission Expression Pedal into Exp2 and the toe switch into the Exp 3 socket? 

 

I am sure if it doesn't work right away it would be very simple to make a little box with a resistor or something to sort it.

 

I bet you could probably make that work, but why? It wouldn't behave any differently from the other ten switches for when you want to control min and max values, with the exception of one additional downside which is: whatever EXP2 is assigned to control would have to go to the toe position before engaging the EXP3 switch, which might not be what you want.

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Stumbled across this little gem...Source Audio SA163 Reflex analog + MIDI Expression pedal. It has 128 presets (recallable by Helix), MIDI in/out, 3 1/4" Exp Jacks (DIP switch), customizable tapers, 3 analog and 3 digital MIDI expression outs (think Helix Exp MIDI CC#3, alternate 1 or 2, or any combination recallable by preset), a toe switch that "mutes" the expression outs (sets to 0/min value, not sure how to implement with Helix yet), waveform shapes (probably doesn't apply to Helix), and USB/PC editable.

I have some ideas on implementation, and I must say this could be an ideal 2nd external Helix floor unit expression pedal (& MIDI controller) for me as it opens up some current and maybe future possibilities.

http://www.sourceaudio.net/products/toolblox/reflex_universal_exp_controller.php#tabbed=product-info=2

http://www.sourceaudio.net/downloads/product_docs/reflex_manual.pdf

http://www.fullcompass.com/prod/279125-Source-Audio-SA163?utm_source=googleps&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=googleps&st-t=googleshopping-all_products_low_bid&vt-k=&vt-mt=&vt-pti=279125&gclid=CjwKEAjwp-S6BRDj4Z7z2IWUhG8SJAAbqbF3ExRanZAY_aE9sdqEyENPBStXBxK3V43aeaykZt-LIhoCicHw_wcB

EDIT: So reading through the manual for this thing, it seems that in addition to customizable Linear and Audio tapers, it can send different expression LFO shapes, Sine, Sawtooth, Square, Triangle, Random Sample and Hold. This could do some cool and funky things to assigned Helix block parameters.

From the manual...

There are five built-in low frequency oscillators (LFOs) which can be used to modulate the expression output periodically with a certain wave shape. When an LFO is active, the position of the treadle controls the frequency, or rate, of the LFO.

 

It also looks like it can be sync'd to an external MIDI clock...hopefully Line 6 will update Helix to send MIDI clock to external devices.

productview-reflex-right.pngproductview-reflex-left.pngproductview-reflex-top.pngproductview-reflex-full.png

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Stumbled across this little gem...Source Audio SA163 Reflex analog + MIDI Expression pedal.  It has 128 presets (recallable by Helix), MIDI in/out, 3 1/4" Exp Jacks (DIP switch), customizable tapers, 3 analog and 3 digital MIDI expression outs (think Helix Exp MIDI CC#3, alternate 1 or 2, or any combination recallable by preset), a toe switch that "mutes" the expression outs (sets to 0/min value, not sure how to implement with Helix yet), waveform shapes (probably doesn't apply to Helix), and USB/PC editable.

 

I have some ideas on implementation, and I must say this could be an ideal 2nd external Helix floor unit expression pedal (& MIDI controller) for me as it opens up some current and maybe future possibilities.

 

http://www.sourceaudio.net/products/toolblox/reflex_universal_exp_controller.php#tabbed=product-info=2

 

http://www.sourceaudio.net/downloads/product_docs/reflex_manual.pdf

 

http://www.fullcompass.com/prod/279125-Source-Audio-SA163?utm_source=googleps&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=googleps&st-t=googleshopping-all_products_low_bid&vt-k=&vt-mt=&vt-pti=279125&gclid=CjwKEAjwp-S6BRDj4Z7z2IWUhG8SJAAbqbF3ExRanZAY_aE9sdqEyENPBStXBxK3V43aeaykZt-LIhoCicHw_wcB

Wow. That's certainly a unique and feature-full expression pedal. Somewhat expensive at $220. Then again, for what it does, maybe not.

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Wow. That's certainly a unique and feature-full expression pedal. Somewhat expensive at $220. Then again, for what it does, maybe not.

 

Definitely a different option I haven't seen brought up before for Helix, which I guess different options are the intent of this thread.

 

My earlier search and post on the $119 MIDI Solutions Pedal controller (allowing you to use a standard volume pedal as an expression controller via Helix MIDI CC#1, 2, or 3, or control any other Helix block parameter by another MIDI CC#) sent me down the MIDI rabbit hole.  I'm back now after a spot of tea with the hatter.

 

What is intriguing to me is the potential ability for it to be any or all of the 3 Helix Expression pedals, or any Helix block parameter controller, via MIDI CC with custom tapers or LFO waves, all programmable/recallable by Helix preset.  What I don't know is what Helix would do if say the onboard Exp1 was active and it received an external MIDI CC#1 message from the SA163 pedal.  I would assume it would work fine.

 

The SA163 could also send additional MIDI CC#'s (independent of Helix EXP1/2/3 MIDI CC#1/2/3) that could be assigned to almost any Helix effect/amp/cab parameter.  This potentially adds a 4th uber-customizable MIDI CC "expression pedal" to Helix.  Internal EXP1/2 + external EXP3 + external MIDI CC Exp pedal (sends 3 analog + up to 3 digital MIDI CC# at once).

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duncann is correct. Makes me mad. I see no reason why only the rack and controller got the toe switch jack connector. The toe switch with this Mission pedal would have been the best option for wah for the floorboard too. The only other options we have for the floorboard are 1. Assign a wah only one EXP (of the two on board) so you can toggle it off with the floorboard toe switch. 2. Assign wah off to a footswitch (horrible). Might as well haul your actual wah around.

I was using my vintage cry baby, which was working perfectly most places, but I got a ton of noise at two of the places I play every week. Wish I could handle that! I'd go for a mission if I could use the toe switch with helix floor unit.

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You can still have an external expression pedal hooked up while keeping the onboard pedal for EXP1 and EXP2 by plugging the external into the EXP3 jack. If you plug the external into EXP2, the onboard will control EXP1 only. So in either case, you can definitely use the onboard for volume and the external for wah and other stuff. To toggle the wah, or other effect, assigned to the external, just assign it to one of Helix's switches. It's not the same as a toe switch or auto-activation, but still works. Plus there's the other alternative of setting up the wah so that when in the heel position (set mix to a low value), the tone is essentially transparent.

 

 

 

I bet you could probably make that work, but why? It wouldn't behave any differently from the other ten switches for when you want to control min and max values, with the exception of one additional downside which is: whatever EXP2 is assigned to control would have to go to the toe position before engaging the EXP3 switch, which might not be what you want.

The advantage to this would be that you could use the long throw onboard pedal for things like volume, where you want more precision and the short throw mission for wah, where that's a more natural feel. I can use it but I don't like wah on the helix pedal.

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I have to say I find these expression pedals stupidly expensive...  Mission, etc

 

I mean you start with a £80 Dunlop wah, take out most of the components.. and then charge an extra £50??  

 

Does anyone else think this or is it just me?

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The advantage to this would be that you could use the long throw onboard pedal for things like volume, where you want more precision and the short throw mission for wah, where that's a more natural feel. I can use it but I don't like wah on the helix pedal.

 

I do exactly this for the reason you state. The question I asked, why one would want to do this, was in reference to the mission pedal made for Helix Rack, which has the toe switch, which would allow you to plug the pedal part into EXP2 and the toe switch into EXP3 for the floor version of Helix. I don't really see any reason to spend the extra $10 for this function when you already have ten just like it already on Helix, with the added possibility of making then momentary.

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I do exactly this for the reason you state. The question I asked, why one would want to do this, was in reference to the mission pedal made for Helix Rack, which has the toe switch, which would allow you to plug the pedal part into EXP2 and the toe switch into EXP3 for the floor version of Helix. I don't really see any reason to spend the extra $10 for this function when you already have ten just like it already on Helix, with the added possibility of making then momentary.

I guess those of us who came up on wah pedals just like to throw it down and instantly engage, like in the middle of a solo, without any extra dancing.

If that mission pedal into exp 2&3 thing works, I would go for that.

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I guess those of us who came up on wah pedals just like to throw it down and instantly engage, like in the middle of a solo, without any extra dancing.

If that mission pedal into exp 2&3 thing works, I would go for that.

That's the thing. It wouldn't work if the goal is to toggle the wah, since exp3 is an expression controller. I think the best you could do to make it work is to assign it to the wah's mix parameter, from 0 to 100, or whatever maximum you usually have it at. So I guess that particular mission pedal would be useful for the floor version after all. That's assuming the Helix would properly auto calibrate the toe-switch when used with exp3, and not freak out. Not sure what kind of jack is used on it either, ts or trs. But even if it didn't work, it probably wouldn't be hard to modify the pedal switch to make it work. It is only $10 more.

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Keep in mind, that pedal is for Helix Rack specifically. The switch on it won't work with the floor version.

Yea sorry for that mixup on my part. I could have sworn that I saw a toe-switch port on the floor unit too, but just checked and no, there wasn't one. Sorry for the fubar assuming above as I have the rack unit.

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I have to say I find these expression pedals stupidly expensive...  Mission, etc

 

I mean you start with a £80 Dunlop wah, take out most of the components.. and then charge an extra £50??  

 

Does anyone else think this or is it just me?

 

It's not just you ;)

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I saw a post on rewiring a Roland EV-5 to be used as a Helix Exp pedal.

 

http://line6.com/support/topic/16994-need-expression-pedal-help/?hl=expression+pedal&do=findComment&comment=152555

 

I can assure you that this mod does work on this pedal. I use an EV-5 plugged into Exp 3 as a general volume pedal for all patches. It hardly gets altered during a gig but it is always available just in case. Then I can use Exp 1 and Exp 2 for anything else on a patch by patch basis eg Wah

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Not familiar with exactly how auto-engage works. Going by the name, if turns on automatically when you move the pedal, right?

 

So how does it turn off? After some specified amount of time? Doesn't seem like enough control. You couldn't park your wah on for one of those cocked-wah sounds (it'd shut off because it's not moving), or just shut it off immediately at the end of a solo (it'd stay on for however many seconds it takes to realize it's npt moving).

 

Or does it mean it toggles on-off at one or the other extreme of the pedal throw? That might be better, but still somewhat easy to turn off accidentally while wah-ing, I'd think.

 

If either of those are how it works, doesn't seem like a holy grail to me. Suppose I'd have to actually try it to know for real though.

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Not familiar with exactly how auto-engage works. Going by the name, if turns on automatically when you move the pedal, right?

 

So how does it turn off? After some specified amount of time? Doesn't seem like enough control. You couldn't park your wah on for one of those cocked-wah sounds (it'd shut off because it's not moving), or just shut it off immediately at the end of a solo (it'd stay on for however many seconds it takes to realize it's npt moving).

 

Or does it mean it toggles on-off at one or the other extreme of the pedal throw? That might be better, but still somewhat easy to turn off accidentally while wah-ing, I'd think.

 

If either of those are how it works, doesn't seem like a holy grail to me. Suppose I'd have to actually try it to know for real though.

 

I would think it's more along your second idea, most likely in the heel position. You bring up a good point about an unwanted turning off while in operation. Unless it only shuts off after a couple of seconds, and only while in the heel position. Or they control the mix of the wah automatically so when in the heel position, the mix would decrease to zero slowly, a couple of seconds. The opposite would happen on engagement, but much more quickly, fractions of a second. But then what would happen if you have, or want, the mix also controlled by an expression pedal? Is an auto-engaging wah now a global option so that when set to on, you lose the ability to control mix?

 

How does a real one work without it constantly shutting off while in operation? Because even when on and in the heel position, it must change the tone somewhat?

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Late to the party but +1 for the Mission. Just be sure to by the Mission with he Line 6 logo on it. They make various configurations.

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Auto engage for the mission pedal and an axe fx is off at heel down. You can then set the slope of (linear to almost an s curve) travel, the percentage of when it does engage going toe forward, the frequency of the low and high tones (so when it's engaged at first you don't even hear it until you push the pedal forward), type of wah, and slow, medium or fast as to when it will disengage, all within the editor. Works like a charm is is used by nearly everyone with and axe fx, a mission pedal and a computer to setup. You of course can the save it to the preset.

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Yep, just bought the Mission Line 6 pedal. It's going back! I bought it for the wha but no toe switch is the deal breaker. It's really is over priced for what it is too, a pedal with one pot in it. Really disappointed. There must be a better solution...

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I found my Mission EP1-L6 on CL for $50 in 2013 for my HD500. I have to admit that I would have a hard time paying $130 new for it. Maybe Im over-simplifying, but looking at it with the cover off, it seems like just a Dunlop pot and a 1/4" jack in a wah pedal case.

 

It really shouldn't be over $99. Maybe it's a $30 Line 6 logo ;)

 

It works great and looks great next to Helix. I'm glad I have it.

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I found my Mission EP1-L6 on CL for $50 in 2013 for my HD500. I have to admit that I would have a hard time paying $130 new for it. Maybe Im over-simplifying, but looking at it with the cover off, it seems like just a Dunlop pot and a 1/4" jack in a wah pedal case.

 

It really shouldn't be over $99. Maybe it's a $30 Line 6 logo ;)

 

It works great and looks great next to Helix. I'm glad I have it.

 

I think I'm just going to obtain a nice looking used Dunlop wah off eBay or wherever for £40 - £50 ish, and then just put a 10k pot in (or maybe be clever and add some other components to make it think it's a 10k pot)

 

If I found a mission used for the same money I'd happily buy one :)

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I just found out that my Boss FV-500L volume/expression pedal works very well with the Helix. Especially with the 2.0 firmware update. I had to reverse the polarity in Global Settings and it works like a charm. It's a great over sized pedal with extremely smooth operation and feel. It has adjustable torque as well.

 

Just wanted to add my $0.02.

 

Link ro product page: http://www.bossus.com/products/fv-500h_500l/

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