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how do you guys patch in playback music?i have the helix and a alto 210.should i hook the ipod up to the 2nd jack of the alto it has a volume,or patch it in the helix?do you guys use anythng else like drum buddy or  the digitech trio plus?looking for difff setups and ideas.thanks

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Digitech Trio + Plus

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You can use any of the Return inputs to feed external sound sources into Helix. Use one Return for mono sources or a Return pair for stereo sources. You can place them anywhere in your signal chain including as an Input Source, somewhere in the middle, or at the very end of th chain depending on what signal processing you want to apply to the external inputs.

 

You need to apply these Returns to each patch/preset where you plan to use them. There is no global setting for external inputs.

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What works well is to take the analog audio output of the playback device (ipod, cellphone, etc.) via 1/8" Stereo to dual TS Male 1/4" Left and Right. The 3' HOSA brand cable I got for a few dollars via Amazon works great!

 

Plug into the Helix FX Returns for Stereo and Assign an FX Loop Return Block. There is a Level Parameter in the FX Loop Block, but I find it preferable to also add a Gain Block after the FX Loop Block and adjust the volume in the Gain Block. Even if you do not assign a Gain Block, you can use Helix's Pedal Edit mode for foot adjustment of the Return FX Loop Volume Level.

 

As another alternative, you could also change the Input Block on Path 1B, or 2, to use the FX Loop and bring the analog audio in on that path rather than using an FX Loop Block on Path 1A.

 

You will need to recreate this for each Preset. You could Save it as a Template.

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You can also connect through USB 1/2 IN and control volume through global settings>Inputs/outputs. Doing it that way will not tie up any space on your preset signal chains. 

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I use an iPad Mini 2 with the USB to Lightning Camera Connection Adapter. Music plays back in the Helix via USB 1/2. There is a USB input trim, but it's buried under global settings and I don't like using it. I use an app called AUM which is an audio mixer for the iPad. You can use it to route the Helix USB inputs and outputs through the iPad, monitor input/output levels, add additional effects/EQ/etc from the iPad, mix music playback in on a separate channel and control its output, recording, and many many other uses. And it utilizes its own presets and has MIDI.

 

For playback I use an app called Anytune Pro+, which allows you to play back backing tracks (which you provide, or any other MP3) in a particular set list, with the ability to slow down or speed up the song/tempo, change the tuning of the song in half steps, and tons of other features, including labeling different sections of the song and skipping between them. It is also MIDI controllable, so you can use the Helix MIDI over USB feature to control the app (or any other MIDI app on the iPad) with the Helix foot switches or patch changes, for play/stop/repeat/next/etc.

 

There are drum apps you can use as well, such as Drum Beats+, X Drummer, Patterning, and tons more, as well as more advanced looper apps such as Group the Loop, Quantiloop, Loopy HD, etc, which are all a bit more robust than the Helix built in looper. And again with MIDI over USB you can control them with the Helix foot switches. There are even full on DAWs available.

 

And all with one USB cable connection.

 

I have my iPad in a tablet holder on a mic stand next to the Helix for convenience. Loving this setup! The Helix + iPad combo is so powerful, versatile, and portable, I just wish I had jumped on board much sooner!

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I use an iPad Mini 2 with the USB to Lightning Camera Connection Adapter. Music plays back in the Helix via USB 1/2. There is a USB input trim, but it's buried under global settings and I don't like using it. I use an app called AUM which is an audio mixer for the iPad. You can use it to route the Helix USB inputs and outputs through the iPad, monitor input/output levels, add additional effects/EQ/etc from the iPad, mix music playback in on a separate channel and control its output, recording, and many many other uses. And it utilizes its own presets and has MIDI.

 

For playback I use an app called Anytune Pro+, which allows you to play back backing tracks (which you provide, or any other MP3) in a particular set list, with the ability to slow down or speed up the song/tempo, change the tuning of the song in half steps, and tons of other features, including labeling different sections of the song and skipping between them. It is also MIDI controllable, so you can use the Helix MIDI over USB feature to control the app (or any other MIDI app on the iPad) with the Helix foot switches or patch changes, for play/stop/repeat/next/etc.

 

There are drum apps you can use as well, such as Drum Beats+, X Drummer, Patterning, and tons more, as well as more advanced looper apps such as Group the Loop, Quantiloop, Loopy HD, etc, which are all a bit more robust than the Helix built in looper. And again with MIDI over USB you can control them with the Helix foot switches. There are even full on DAWs available.

 

And all with one USB cable connection.

 

I have my iPad in a tablet holder on a mic stand next to the Helix for convenience. Loving this setup! The Helix + iPad combo is so powerful, versatile, and portable, I just wish I had jumped on board much sooner!

 

 

Thanks for this I'm loving that idea through the iPad will try this method out!

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Thanks for this I'm loving that idea through the iPad will try this method out!

 

Definitely look into it! I also forgot to mention you can use it to look at sheet music (if that's something you do), or view tabs, lyrics, etc. I run Tab Pro by Ultimate Guitar on it, which is great for learning new songs.

 

AUM is $20 but SO worth it! It should be the first app you buy for using the iPad with your Helix. The routing possibilities are as flexible as the Helix itself using that app, and it's very simple to use as well, once you get the hang of it. You can bring in your signal from the Helix into AUM, set up multiple mix buses, multiple sends/returns, route the signal through various apps (for effects or other processing or utilize AUM's built-in signal processing), etc etc. If you want to use your Helix for vocals, but don't like the effects included, there are a bunch of vocal effects processor apps you can use to process vocals on the iPad. Just plug in a mic to the Helix, route the signal out via USB into the iPad, apply the vocal effects you want, and then send them back out to the Helix. I love using it to monitor all my levels, both in and out, as well as balance out the levels of everything else on the iPad with the Helix . I think it's a great alternative to using a laptop/desktop. I feel it's way more portable, takes up less space, the apps are cheaper than their desktop counterparts, and I hate playing in front of a computer (feel too constrained). And I REALLY like that 1 cable hookup, and how compact it is mounted on a mic stand!

 

I've read how some people want multiple global EQ's, or how they perform in the same places and would like patches EQ'd for those environments, etc. Well if you set the output block in the Helix to a USB channel, receive that block into AUM, apply some EQ to the signal, send that signal back out to the Helix for output to the 1/4" / XLR connectors, you can then save that AUM session as a preset and recall it at anytime. That way you can have multiple global EQ's for different locations (and of course you can name the presets). Just like with the Helix, the possibilities are only limited by your imagination!

 

The only limitations really are the number of footswitches on the Helix that you can dedicate to control everything, such as loopers on the iPad or Anytune or a Drum machine's functionality, depending on how you lay out your presets/snapshots. You have to get creative and figure out how you want to lay out your foot switches so everything is easily accessible. But with the Helix's ability to send MIDI commands with individual footswitches, patch changes, or snapshots, you can get pretty good results with a little planning. Either that or get an external 6/8/10-button MIDI footswitch, connect it to the Helix via it's MIDI connectors, and then use that to control the iPad via MIDI thru to USB, leaving all the Helix footswitches dedicated to the patches. Actually I don't know if this will work, as I haven't tried it myself. Been doing some research on the subject, but can't find a definitive answer. I have an open post on the forum to see if this will work.

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Casual listening: MacBook Pro straight in via USB, no setup needed. This is how I'm listening to music at work right now.

Practicing with Tracks: iPad or iPhone with camera kit via USB, no setup needed.

Live Performance: MacBook Pro (tracks and synths) via USB 7/8 into Path 2B.

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Casual listening: MacBook Pro straight in via USB, no setup needed. This is how I'm listening to music at work right now.

Practicing with Tracks: iPad or iPhone with camera kit via USB, no setup needed.

Live Performance: MacBook Pro (tracks and synths) via USB 7/8 into Path 2B.

DI, I had seen an ideascale idea to move the USB input trim to a better location. Any plans for this?

Thanks.

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