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Rocco_Crocco

Some competition for Helix... curious to see how this is received

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The Helix has really had a impact on the design of this unit...

Or did it? Considering how long it takes stuff like this to go from drawing board to your living room, minus some corporate espionage, I don't see how they could have managed to design, test, and release it in the time since Helix hit the streets...

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Or did it? Considering how long it takes stuff like this to go from drawing board to your living room, minus some corporate espionage, I don't see how they could have managed to design, test, and release it in the time since Helix hit the streets...

Well it hasn't been released yet. Maybe just a pre-production prototype. It certainly LOOKS like a Helix.

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Line 6 put a few years into development in the Helix. Company-B does not have to put that work into a "new" product, they just have to copy (within reason) the functionality. Helix has been out for what now, 1 1/2 years? That is plenty of time to put something together that is essentially a copy of the workflow/layout of another product, with some tweaks. 

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Or did it? Considering how long it takes stuff like this to go from drawing board to your living room, minus some corporate espionage, I don't see how they could have managed to design, test, and release it in the time since Helix hit the streets...

 

Making a prototype and going to full-blown production are different things... I would be surprised if this is unit is available for purchase before Fall 2017, personally.

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Even if it is available for full hands on use at NAMM next week, the HeadRush could wind up being more of a HeadScratcher. A flattering clone attempt to grab attention from what Line 6 pioneered with the Helix's form factor. Even back in August 2016, Helix had passed 10,000 units sold, (according to what Line 6 mentioned at their Open House.) That figure most certainly has grown substantially in the past 4 1/2 months. And, presuming Line 6's 2017 Helix enhancements and upgrades are loaded with substantial features and improvements, the other guys may be playing catch up for a long time.

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I am not surprised to see the incredible design of the Helix inspire imitators. It was not difficult to anticipate this happening. Although it will probably take quite a few firmware updates for the Headrush unit to even begin to compete with the Helix (if ever), it looks like the Headrush is specifically targeting some areas that the Helix either decided to go another direction with or is still working on. In particular the touchscreen and the 'gapless' preset switching jumped out at me. I am curious as to how the quad-core DSP processor compares with the two SHARC processors on the Helix in terms of processing power. There are certainly far less I/O options available on the Headrush. I would not be surprised if this unit either comes out, or descends to a lower price point than the Helix. As always I hope these alternative products encourage healthy competition and innovation.

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Looks like it will be a lot less than Helix, I think in about the 1000-dollar ballpark or under.

And probably only one signal chain.

 

It doesn't compete with Helix, imho, but it just might be a valid option for some folks.

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Competition is a good thing (even if this may not be up to Helix standards). The next one might be...  ;)

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If I hadn't already gotten Helix, being an Eleven Rack owner myself, I can see how this could really be appealing.

 

My Eleven Rack is still a great piece of gear, especially running into IRs. I think Eleven MKII plug in came out right before Christmas with some more models and some updates.

 

I always thought the Eleven Rack was a step above my old HD500X tone wise. I'd imagine this Headrush is somewhere between HD500X and Helix. The $1000 price reflects it too.

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And just when when will this thing be available?

 

Oh - First of April.

 

Yeah, right!

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And just when when will this thing be available?

 

Oh - First of April.

 

Yeah, right!

 

What makes you doubt that it'll become a real product?

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What makes you doubt that it'll become a real product?

Why? Have you got one on pre-order?

 

It's my cheap attempt at being humorous and looks like I missed the mark, once again!

 

Jeeziz!

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Why? Have you got one on pre-order?

 

It's my cheap attempt at being humorous and looks like I missed the mark, once again!

 

Jeeziz!

Ok, jeez! Sorry I blew up. 😂

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To steal from an old Porsche ad,

 

"Helix... There is no substitute."

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Ok, jeez! Sorry I blew up. 😂

  

No problem dude.

 

To steal from an old Porsche ad,

"Helix... There is no substitute."

I can understand the brand loyalty thing - except I reckon some folks at Line 6 could be a little more than a tad miffed by the plagiarism of the Headrush styling. That looks like a lot more than just borrowing from the Helix design and I would have expected more from Akai, Avid and the parent company.

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No problem dude.

 

I can understand the brand loyalty thing - except I reckon some folks at Line 6 could be a little more than a tad miffed by the plagiarism of the Headrush styling. That looks like a lot more than just borrowing from the Helix design and I would have expected more from Akai, Avid and the parent company.

 

 

I don't know man.  I've taken issue with Avid ever since they bought Wizoo and M-Audio.  They just shut down Wizoo and stuck me with unusable software (Latino and Darbuka) and then they stopped development of M-Audio Key-Rig.  I wouldn't put it past them to try and get away with stealing.  GRRRR!

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I can understand the brand loyalty thing - except I reckon some folks at Line 6 could be a little more than a tad miffed by the plagiarism of the Headrush styling. That looks like a lot more than just borrowing from the Helix design and I would have expected more from Akai, Avid and the parent company.

 

Avid didn't have anything to do with this... InMusic acquired the source-code for the Eleven Rack when they bought M-Music and the AIR software stuff from Avid back in 2012. None of the original team who worked on the 11 Rack were involved in this.

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No problem dude.

 

I can understand the brand loyalty thing - except I reckon some folks at Line 6 could be a little more than a tad miffed by the plagiarism of the Headrush styling. That looks like a lot more than just borrowing from the Helix design and I would have expected more from Akai, Avid and the parent company.

It almost looks like they liberally 'borrowed' from not only the Helix design but, due to the touchscreen and graphics, also that of the Digitech IPB-10 which used an iPad as the control surface. The interface they are showing reminds me of how the Digitech looked.

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It almost looks like they liberally 'borrowed' from not only the Helix design but, due to the touchscreen and graphics, also that of the Digitech IPB-10 which used an iPad as the control surface. The interface they are showing reminds me of how the Digitech looked.

I knew it looked familiar!

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Avid didn't have anything to do with this... InMusic acquired the source-code for the Eleven Rack when they bought M-Music and the AIR software stuff from Avid back in 2012. None of the original team who worked on the 11 Rack were involved in this.

Oops!

Strike that.

Once more you are correct, Phil - my mistake to have mentioned Avid, they are not involved. Doh!

Another momentary lapse of reason!

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Looks like it will be a lot less than Helix, I think in about the 1000-dollar ballpark or under.

 

And probably only one signal chain.

 

It doesn't compete with Helix, imho, but it just might be a valid option for some folks.

 

Almost makes one think that Helix should make a "Helix Lite".   Just looking at posts around the web, there are plenty of people who only use a fraction of the Helix's power, and that is likely ALL they will every use of it.   The reason why they bought the Helix over something smaller/less expensive was the build quality, the routing, and the Interface.   

 

When I think back at some of the effects rigs I have owned since the 70's...  nearly ALL of them were more expensive than I single Helix, and ALL of them had restrictions that the Helix doesn't and that's before even getting into actual tone/sound quality.   Do the math.  

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From a consumer standpoint, copying the Helix design fine. Anything that moves modelling tech forward is great, IMO.

 

Dollars to donuts the boys at Fractal and Kemper are working on improving their interfaces, and they've looked at the Helix for ideas in this regard.

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Some of my greatest areas of curiosity right now regarding this device are:

  1. They are claiming "THE MOST VERSATILE, REALISTIC-SOUNDING AND RESPONSIVE AMPLIFIER, CABINET, MICROPHONE AND FX MODELS EVER FOUND IN A FLOORBOARD GUITAR FX PROCESSOR".  Will this be the case?
  2. What compromises did they have to make to provide "Gapless preset switching". Did they find some really slick way to do this or are they severely limiting what choices you can make in a preset by for instance giving you one slot for each effect category? Ultimately how does their quad-core DSP processor compare with the two SHARCs on the Helix.
  3. How are IRs implemented. How large (max bytes) can they be and how many can be loaded?
  4. Will there be an editor?
  5. How will this device be supported? Frequent firmware updates? Many more effect, amps, and models? New features?
  6. How robust is the build quality?

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Well, even if the device is just a slick touch UI floor unit with the Eleven + Expansion Pack + new Eleven MKii amps with IR capability that integrates into the Pro Tools ecosystem like the Eleven plug in (track savable presets, etc.), it will be a nice piece of gear at $999.  If it can be had occasionally for $799 with discount coupons, open box, etc. even better.  It will be a pretty big step up from POD HD500x and current Eleven Rack I bet.

 

One thing I have to give Eleven Rack is the high-quality build...jacks, knobs, switches, etc.  Very road worthy.  I'm not sure that I am seeing the same quality in the Headrush at this point with the limited info available.

 

I think there is a market and user group for it in the Avid community and those that don't want to pay $1500+ for Helix and the rest of the current gen modeler gang.  Pretty smart product if you ask me.  If I hadnt jumped into Helix last year and was still using my Eleven Rack, I would have been all over this.

 

I wish them well and really hope they support their Eleven product and user group better than Avid. I think it's a nice nod to Line 6 and Helix too.

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This is a helluva claim given Helix and AX-8...

 

"The HeadRush Pedalboard delivers the most versatile, realistic-sounding and responsive amplifier, cabinet, microphone and FX models ever found in a floorboard guitar FX processor."

 

I have to eyeroll this one.  Guess we'll see...

 

P.S.  Nice Axe Fx Sarah ;)

 

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This is a helluva claim given Helix and AX-8...

 

"The HeadRush Pedalboard delivers the most versatile, realistic-sounding and responsive amplifier, cabinet, microphone and FX models ever found in a floorboard guitar FX processor."

 

I have to eyeroll this one.  Guess we'll see...

 

 

Marketing BS. I laugh whenever I see similar blurbs about any product.

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This is a helluva claim given Helix and AX-8...

 

"The HeadRush Pedalboard delivers the most versatile, realistic-sounding and responsive amplifier, cabinet, microphone and FX models ever found in a floorboard guitar FX processor."

 

I have to eyeroll this one.  Guess we'll see...

 

P.S.  Nice Axe Fx Sarah ;)

 

 

 

Marketing BS. I laugh whenever I see similar blurbs about any product.

 

There is a thin line between advertising hype and fraud.  ;)  That is a pretty explicit claim though. I wonder how that can even be determined?

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There is a thin line between advertising hype and fraud. ;) That is a pretty explicit claim though. I wonder how that can even be determined?

I think all such statements have an implied "We believe ..." or "In our opinion ... " prefixed to them. It's up to the marketplace to prove or disprove them. :)

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I tried it at NAMM on Thursday. Sounded good and was easy enough to use. As a Helix owner I'm not compelled to get one of these but at $999 it seems like a good unit albeit with a MUCH more limited signal path and feature set.

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I hope it sounds good.  It's the first bit of "competition" I have seen as I do not consider Kemper or AxeFX really competition... more apples and pancakes... they're both food, but that's about it.   Competition is good.   I actually think this unit is a little pricey...  I mean with a little creative bargaining you can get a Helix for a few hundred more, so that might be a miss...  although...  some vendors do tend to "inflate" the price of a new item until the actual release date.

 

Anyway...  it's got some clever features and maybe the extra few hundred will be a difference for someone who doesn't need all that Helix has to offer.  Again, competition is good.

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Im in! I've had two helix, first one had issues the second well maybe since I was one of the first to purchase it, it just wasn't friendly with playing out hooking up with some foh boards. New firm wares might of changed that since I sold it. Still have my fh 1500 and fh fx floor pedal hooked to my clr neo Mkii. Which in a live band mix were I always use them sound great. I always thought the helix should of came with a iPad Bluetooth option for ease of use and no bending over or hooking up to a computer to get the tones you want. Heck these are computers now why do you still have to hook up to another to edit? I'm a gigging out guitarist I don't want to spend countless hours chasing the preverbial tone tail. Headrush looks good, will see, time will tell..

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I am very curious to see how the touchscreen for the Headrush will be received. When I initially wrote a review for the Helix the touchscreen was a feature I commented would have been a great addition not substitution for the physical knobs for certain operations and its exclusion was an oversight in the Helix's design (even if that "oversight" was intentional) . If I remember correctly Line6 had found in their preliminary market research that users did not like touchscreens. This impression was reinforced by negative feedback on the forum regarding touchscreens as well as lack of voting and even downvoting of touchscreen ideas on Ideascale. We may now see whether a touchscreen is the anathema it has been purported to be as things play out in realtime with Headrush sales and their user's reviews and comments.

 

Like other users here they definitely captured my attention with this feature which I would like to see implemented on the Helix in future versions; I don't want to lose the physical knobs and switches for navigation but I would love to see a touchscreen added. It could be very helpful for many actions on the Helix like preset and snapshot naming via a virtual keyboard, dragging and dropping of blocks for preset design and path rearrangement, etc.. I think if users are given a choice between physical knobs or touchscreen they often fall into two distinct camps with perhaps more people preferring the physical knobs. However, if you gave people both I think the majority of users might find that both a touchscreen and knobs and switches combined make for a powerful and extremely easy to use interface.

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Like other users here they definitely captured my attention with this feature which I would like to see implemented on the Helix in future versions; I don't want to lose the physical knobs and switches for navigation but I would love to see a touchscreen added. It could be very helpful for many actions on the Helix like preset and snapshot naming via a virtual keyboard, dragging and dropping of blocks for preset design and path rearrangement, etc.. I think if users are given a choice between physical knobs or touchscreen they often fall into two distinct camps with perhaps more people preferring the physical knobs. However, if you gave people both I think the majority of users might find that both a touchscreen and knobs and switches combined make for a powerful and extremely easy to use interface.

 

I agree totally on this.  I wouldn't want a full-blown touch screen, but there are a couple of actions that I actually catch myself touching the screen..... to no avail of course.   Even if the touch was just a "select-this-block" and nothing else, it would add a level of intuitiveness to an already pretty intuitive system.    In fact, that's how it works when we're using the editor.  We can just click on a block.  If you have a touch-screen laptop, there ya go.

 

Would be nice if the hardware worked that way cause in the heat of battle, I could see using the joystick one could end up making a mess real quick.

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