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Lotta_Gear

Helix LT - Just pulled the trigger

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First became aware of the Helix late last week, went to see it at my local music store, and then spent the weekend obsessing over it.  I'm an "old-school" musician, still have the Fender Super Reverb I bought used in '73, gave my '71 strat to my older son last year.  I've been on LONG hiatus while dealing with raising family and career, but lately getting back into doing open mic stuff and hoping to get into gigging soon.  I was wondering what I would do for amplification and tone.  I bought a decent PA recently that consists of two powered speakers (350w) and a mixer, and I've been mostly sticking to acoustic stuff so far, but wanted to get back into some good old R&B, Rock 'n Roll, etc.  Jazz, too.  Was hoping for a solution that would give me lots of tone without having to lug huge amps around (my SR is way too heavy for me now).

 

So I picked up the Helix LT on Monday, but had a late appointment, so I couldn't actually play with it till last evening, and even then only had time and energy to fire it up and play with a few presets.

WOW!!  It's everything I hoped for, and more!!  Looking forward to getting deeper into it, but from what I've seen so far, this is exactly what I was hoping for.  Can't wait to show up at an open mic with it and totally blow everyone away!

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You will enjoy it. Helix seems to be more intuitive to "old schoolers" since we tend to understand all the little things that they spent so much time modeling in the digital realm. 

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Thanks!  Looking forward to a deeper dive.  I absolutely LOVE that the interface is so amp-like, with real knobs to tweak the various parameters like gain, bass and treble, etc.  From what I've heard, the tweed and Twin Reverb sounds are to DIE for!  Even just right out of the box.  I financed the purchase over a year, and I'm selling excess gear (amps are excess gear now, lol) to help pay it down.

 

I have to admit, I haven't been as excited about a purchase since I took possession of my special-order American Vintage '56!

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Sounds like you've gotta lotta gear that I'd still have trouble parting with if I owned it even if I was using my Helix exclusively (which I am, but my old gear is nothing to write home about).

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Well,  not selling any guitars, and DEFINITELY not selling the '65 SR!!  No, that will go to my younger son (the two boys have a great band together).  Just selling some "extra" stuff I don't use, like a Vox VT-20+, an extra snare drum, extra hi-hats, stuff like that.

 

I will say, I've had a couple looks at the download page, and I am stumped!  Gonna do a bit of searching in the forums to figure out what I need to download first, but first thing will be to boot up and see what version is on the LT itself...

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Well,  not selling any guitars, and DEFINITELY not selling the '65 SR!!  No, that will go to my younger son (the two boys have a great band together).  Just selling some "extra" stuff I don't use, like a Vox VT-20+, an extra snare drum, extra hi-hats, stuff like that.

 

I will say, I've had a couple looks at the download page, and I am stumped!  Gonna do a bit of searching in the forums to figure out what I need to download first, but first thing will be to boot up and see what version is on the LT itself...

 

Well, I hope your kids appreciate what they are being given ;)

 

What be stumping you?

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Just trying to figure out what to download first. For instance, since I'm downloading everything from scratch, I assume I should download the latest version of the editor to start with? Does the version of the updater depend on the firmware version on my unit, or is that independent? That sort of stuff. I've seen a number of similar posts, so I know I'm not the first to experience this.

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Well, I hope your kids appreciate what they are being given ;)

My kids were raised on classic rock, blues, and jazz. They already own a lot of Fender gear (amps and guitars). My '71 Strat (4-bolt neck) was kind of legendary as they were growing up. The younger one is the lead guitarist, he cut his eye teeth on Hendrix, Vaughan and others. Yeah, I think they know what they're getting...

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Welcome to the club.  If you use Facebook, I would highly recommend joining the 10,000+ of us on the Line 6 Helix - Rack - LT - Native User Group ORIGINAL page.

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Thanks, I will!  And... that brings up another question.  One of the things at the top of my mind when I bought it was that I can use it on stage and in my home studio, and get the same sound into my DAW as I use on stage (not that I'm doing a great deal of either, at the moment, lol).  So I'm wondering... if I have the hardware, and I can connect it right to my DAW, why would I want a plugin (Helix Native)?  And assuming I did buy that, can it import settings directly from the LT, or would I be faced with doing setups in two places? 

 

Inquiring minds want to know! :P

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Okay. Just downloaded Driver v1.86, Updater v1.11, Helix LT 2.21.0 bundle (firmware), and Editor 2.21. Given that I haven't created any presets, loaded any IR's, in fact just un-boxed it yesterday, I know that I don't have to back anything up.

 

Questions:

 

1. What do I need to install first? The updater? Then use it to update the firmware on the LT?

2. What's the Driver 1.86 for? Does it get loaded using the updater, or is it a driver for the computer?

3. Installing the Editor would be the last step?

 

Thanks for any help.

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.....  So I'm wondering... if I have the hardware, and I can connect it right to my DAW, why would I want a plugin (Helix Native)?  And assuming I did buy that, can it import settings directly from the LT, or would I be faced with doing setups in two places? 

....

 

The presets for Helix LT and Helix Native are fully compatible. Any preset you develop in one place can be transferred to the other so you whichever place you create/edit the preset, the results can be used in the other. You don't need to do setups in both places.

 

The advantage of Helix Native is versatility and flexibility in your workflow. You can record the dry guitar tone, as well as the wet one, from Helix LT into your DAW. Then you transfer the preset into Helix Native and use it as a starting point for further tweaking (or complete replacement) as the song develops in your DAW. While you could do the same thing reamping with the Helix LT hardware, using the Helix Native software is faster and easier - and you can do it without needing the LT hardware connected. When the song is finished in your DAW, transfer the preset back to Helix LT for your live performances.

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...

Questions:

 

1. What do I need to install first? The updater? Then use it to update the firmware on the LT?

2. What's the Driver 1.86 for? Does it get loaded using the updater, or is it a driver for the computer?

3. Installing the Editor would be the last step?

 

....

 

Actually, the proper procedure is to install the editor first. That process also installs the driver and the Updater program. Then run the Updater program with your Helix LT connected to update the firmware.

 

 

... and you're right. Since you are just starting you don't need to back anything up first.

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My kids were raised on classic rock, blues, and jazz. They already own a lot of Fender gear (amps and guitars). My '71 Strat (4-bolt neck) was kind of legendary as they were growing up. The younger one is the lead guitarist, he cut his eye teeth on Hendrix, Vaughan and others. Yeah, I think they know what they're getting...

 

:)

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Many thanks! Just spent about a half hour checking out the factory presets (just a selection of them, it's rather late), and WOW!! I can feel the power and potential of this thing! It'll take me a while to learn to "ride it", but I'll have a lot of fun getting there. Together with my Boss RC-300 loop station, I think I'll be able to do pretty much anything. Even the looper block in the LT is quite powerful and easy to use.

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The advantage of Helix Native is versatility and flexibility in your workflow. You can record the dry guitar tone, as well as the wet one, from Helix LT into your DAW. Then you transfer the preset into Helix Native and use it as a starting point for further tweaking (or complete replacement) as the song develops in your DAW. While you could do the same thing reamping with the Helix LT hardware, using the Helix Native software is faster and easier - and you can do it without needing the LT hardware connected. When the song is finished in your DAW, transfer the preset back to Helix LT for your live performances.

Thanks, that makes a lot of sense.

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Got the editor installed and the firmware updated, now running 2.21.  Explored the editor a bit.

 

One question:  How do you move between the preset banks using the LT (i.e. switch between Factory1 and Factory2, or User1, etc.)?  I tried holding down FS1/FS7, and I then see the 8 presets, but clicking on a footswitch (for instance FS3) doesn't seem to change the bank I'm in - if I use FS1 or FS7 (up/down) it just cycles through the same 32 presets (starting with "US DBL NRM").  I'm sure I'll figure it out, it's late, and I didn't spend that much time looking at it.  Tired, probably.

 

I did find the Litigator.  Wow, what a sweet amp THAT is!!

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So finally today I was able to spend some real quality time with the LT, and I am SO stoked!! I'm camping this weekend, so I brought it along with an electric guitar and a pair of headphones, and worked mainly on discovering settings I'd want for a few songs, like some early Beatles songs, Mellencamp's "Hurts So Good", the Doobies' "Listen to the Music", and the Stones' "Honky Tonk Women". Along the way I also started working on a new original song, my first in ages. To be honest, I found Snapshot 01A US Double Nrm entirely satisfactory for all of that. I know, headphones don't tell the whole story, but I suspect this will be my "go to" snapshot for a lot of things, at least until I get some more experience with this rig. I suspect the amp on this snapshot is modelled after a Fender Twin Reverb... sure sounds like one.

 

Gotta say, I am SO impressed with this thing!!

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One question:  How do you move between the preset banks using the LT (i.e. switch between Factory1 and Factory2, or User1, etc.)?  I tried holding down FS1/FS7, and I then see the 8 presets, but clicking on a footswitch (for instance FS3) doesn't seem to change the bank I'm in - if I use FS1 or FS7 (up/down) it just cycles through the same 32 presets (starting with "US DBL NRM").  I'm sure I'll figure it out, it's late, and I didn't spend that much time looking at it.  Tired, probably.

Read the manual and figured it out. I hadn't seen that you could PRESS the Presets knob. Also didn't realize the joystick was the navigation tool for the lists. Simple, really!

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