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jhinds7

Using the HD500x for Vocal Effects Processing/Enhancement?

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I've been going an acoustic show at local pubs with my acoustic guitar, mic into a TC Helicon Play Acoustic pedaldirect to PA for a couple of years.  I found that while the TC pedal has great vocal harmony capabilities, I didn't use them that much.  But rather I wanted more processing for guitar tones. 

 

So recently, I swapped out my acoustic guitar and TC Helicon Acoustic pedal for a JTV69 and HD500x.  I'm really enjoying what this gives me in terms of guitar applications.  Acoustic guitars plus electric guitar/amps sounds direct to PA.   I've got the HD500x setup when Variax is on input 1 and mic is on input 2 with split presets for separate processing of guitar and vocals feeding hard panned XLR outs with the outputs adjusted accordingly. 

 

This has been working great so far, but I'm finding that I'm spending most of my time working on the acoustic and electric guitar sounds.  Now that I've got those dialed in, I'm started to think about what I can have the HD500x do to my vocals, if anything.  Right now, I just have them going through the signal chain dry or maybe with a splash of reverb. 

 

My question is, are there others here using the HD500x to process live vocals?  If so, what sort of effects blocks do you find useful for that application?  Just trying to get the best live vocal tones out of it that I can.

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I have used a POD HD500 in the past for simultaneous guitar and vocals as you describe. It worked well using the studio preamp (I forget exactly what it's called - mysteriously it was bundled with the EQ FX as I recall) with a touch of EQ, delay and reverb to taste. Getting the exact settings to your taste is relatively straightforward. It worked very well for me for a while.

 

The main limitation I found is related to both a strength and weakness of the preset architecture. It's easy to switch presets and have a different guitar tone, and you can also adjust the vocal settings to taste for that specific guitar tone/song/preset. That's a strength. But in most cases you want to keep the same basic vocal tone while switching guitar settings. So I found that after a while I had many presets using vocals, most with the same vocal settings. And that's where the weakness emerged: sometimes I wanted to tweak my basic vocal settings - and I had to repeat/recreate those tweaks in every preset. There's no 'Copy Path B' feature between presets.

 

The old Pod X3 had a great feature called Lock Tone 2 and I used it to maintain the same vocal settings while switching presets, uinless I wanted the vocal tone to change with the preset in which case I simply turned off the feature for that song/preset. It worked really well. But the POD HD dropped that feature and I remember being disappointed with that decision. In the end that is what prompted me to abandon the combined vocal+guitar approach in general with the Pod HD. I now use Helix but it does not have a Lock Tone 2 feature either. So I now go straight to mixer for vocals.

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