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how to make pod transparent in amp setup?


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Hey guys. 

About a year ago I bought a pod hd500x, and I like it a lot. There's a lot of cool stuff you can do with it, and I would like to keep it BUT...


I current have a blackstar head running into a marshall cab. I LOVE the sound I get out of it, however, when I use the four cable method to run it through the fx loop, the quality of the sound is brought down exponentially, even when I'm using a patch with nothing on it. 


My question is: How can I make it so that you cannot tell the difference between me running straight into my amp and through the pod fx loop.


At this point I'm honestly considering selling mine, and trading in for pedals, but I would like to experiment a bit more to see if I can figure things out. 


Thanks in advance!

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posted by a guy in another forum... pasted and copied here



I've cracked the HD500 4CM!!!


Postby johnsontylerj » Wed May 02, 2012 8:23 pm

OK fellas - I've figured it out...It's way later than a month after the last post. (sorry about that)


Here's the Skinny, I've done tests now with signal generators to get consistent levels, and been very scientific about all this.


There are two main reasons for tone suck using the 4CM and an HD500 - and one of the reasons is a legitimate bug in the product - one is actually intentional.


First step in config - Input assignments = Input 1-Guitar, Input 2-Variax. This lowers the noise-floor of the pedal.


First - there is a 2.8dB difference between the Input Jack and the FX Send Jack (this is the bug). This has a huge impact on the tone. When you're using the HD500 as a pedal board before the Blackstar Preamp - the FX send switch needs to be set to "Stomp" - If it's set to "Line", you're unnaturally clipping the preamp in an unpleasant way because it's sending a signal that's 10dB LOUDER than the input signal...We all knew that.


The solution is to place the FX loop AFTER the mixer in your FX chain - so It goes: [Effects blocks]=>[Amp Model (Bypassed)]=>[Mixer]=>[FX LOOP]=>[Remaining Effects Blocks] Make Sense?

Then - you turn up BOTH A and B channels of the Mixer to "+3.0dB" and pan them both to "Center".

Now if you were to test the signal like I did, you would notice NEGLIGIBLE differences in the tone. The Gut Shimmer is back, right?


But wait - if your using a patch that has a fuzz face in it, or an analogue chorus (or a number of other FX)- and it's the first thing in the signal chain your thinking - "Why the hell is my tone still wrong - it sounds like someone turned the tone knob on my guitar down!!"


Well, this is the intentional part of the HD modelling...It's called Input Z. Line 6 is modelling the individual and authentic impedances of the pedals and Amps being modeled. Hence an analogue chorus with a 22K pot being first thing in the chain will KILL your tone. The fix is simple - either move the effect, or set the Input Z globally to 3.5M, or 1M - there's almost no difference between the two as far as the end result is concerned.


When you use these simple tweaks to setup 4CM you'll be VERY happy with the results. PM me if you have any other questions.


THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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no offense, but you really have nothing better to do than write useless and stupid comments like this above here? ..


I never use the 4CM, despite that and since I know quite well this device I could have written in my own words the same concepts written by the guy of the other forum ..


but as a quicker solution, I decided to copy the good work already done by that guy ..


moreover, unlike what many often do, I have not simply copied and pasted (without declaring it), but I said clearly that I am not the author, whose name is clearly visible in the original text (of course for those who can read)..


in this context the big difference between me and you, is that I have done something useful for someone here, but you have only been a PITA


actually, you are right. i didn't originally see that you credited the author. but it doesn't excuse your making insulting remarks to someone who you don't know.

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however do not worry, no more offenses from me, I'm going to simply ignore you completely from now on..


I'm sure not to miss anything useful from your part


no more offenses from you...and then immediately something offensive. it's a wonder the internet is such a kind place.

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I run my pod hd 500 in Looping my jvm marshall, I do not use any amp and drive from pod ,just use for modulations, noise gate, tuner and delays. Do you think that in this case, should I use the 4 cable method or just run my pod in jvm the loop? as I've been doing already

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