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jerryakisauce

Helix LT and Fender Hot Rod Deville

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I just ordered a Helix LT yesterday and I am very new to modelers. What is the best way to hook up the Helix through a Fender Hot Rod Deville? I don't know much about the 4CM  and just wanted the best advice on what to do. Thanks

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I appreciate this but I've watched this guy's videos several times as well as many others, and I'm still not getting it. I guess what my issue is, is that that there are so many options on what to do, I don't even know where to begin. I'll admit it, I'm a noob when it comes signal flow, etc. What I have going on is this:

Guitar--->Helix-->Helix send-->Amp guitar input-->Power amp out-->Helix return-->Helix main out-->Power amp in 

 

I had a friend just set me up with using the FX loop in the chain instead of the two "send/return" blocks. Ex. Guitar-->distortion-->comp-->FX Loop--> Delay-->Reverb.

Am I using this correctly? 

I also don't get Snapshots at all not matter how many videos I watch. I'm a very hands on learner and just watching these youtube videos where guys are doing things that I would never do because of the style of music I'm playing, doesn't help. 

 

So what i'm saying is, any tips?

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43 minutes ago, jerryakisauce said:

I appreciate this but I've watched this guy's videos several times as well as many others, and I'm still not getting it. I guess what my issue is, is that that there are so many options on what to do, I don't even know where to begin. I'll admit it, I'm a noob when it comes signal flow, etc. What I have going on is this:

Guitar--->Helix-->Helix send-->Amp guitar input-->Power amp out-->Helix return-->Helix main out-->Power amp in 

 

I had a friend just set me up with using the FX loop in the chain instead of the two "send/return" blocks. Ex. Guitar-->distortion-->comp-->FX Loop--> Delay-->Reverb.

Am I using this correctly? 

I also don't get Snapshots at all not matter how many videos I watch. I'm a very hands on learner and just watching these youtube videos where guys are doing things that I would never do because of the style of music I'm playing, doesn't help. 

 

So what i'm saying is, any tips?

Honestly? Read the manual Im not being an lollipop Im serious thats how i figured out alot and I watched videos

 

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Hokay - Helix is a very intuitive, but very powerful piece of gear.  That means you can get something awesome happening very easily, but to get to every nook and cranny of what the Helix can do....you're gonna have to do some kind of research.  There's videos, manuals, and - since you said you are a hands on kind of learner - templates.  Seriously, they're awesome - there's a template for all kinds of things.  Hit the Preset button and move over to Templates, and you'll find a treasure trove of ideas to play with.  

 

It sounds like you've already got the basics of the 4 Cable Method (4CM) down.  Your friend has the right idea - General Rule of Thumb is delay and reverb in the loop of the amp - but from the way you describe it, he may not actually be using your preamp (the way you describe it sounds like you don't have a preamp at all - modeled or real - which probably won't sound great).   However, the setup you describe in the first paragraph is correct: 

5 hours ago, cgar18 said:

What I have going on is this:

Guitar--->Helix-->Helix send-->Amp guitar input-->Power amp out-->Helix return-->Helix main out-->Power amp in

So if that's the case, you're good to go.  

As for snapshots - the easiest way to think of them is by having each snapshot turn on/off multiple pedals simultaneously.  First, assign some effects to pedals.  Now go into Snapshot mode - your pedals should say Snapshot 1, Snapshot 2, etc.  (You can rename these later)  Now turn some of your effects on.  Save your patch.  Select Snapshot 2.  Change the effects - turn some different ones on, and maybe some off.  Save the patch.  Now when you select Snapshot 1 it will go back to the setting it was when you saves the first time - and when you select Snapshot 2 it will jump all the effects on and off to where you had it when you saved the second time.  

 

Snapshots are WAY more powerful than this, you can tweak knobs and all kinds of things.  Like I said, intuitive, but very powerful.  This is a great primer on the idea.  

 

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Thank you very much for taking the time to reply. I do have a few more questions though. 

Quote

It sounds like you've already got the basics of the 4 Cable Method (4CM) down.  Your friend has the right idea - General Rule of Thumb is delay and reverb in the loop of the amp - but from the way you describe it, he may not actually be using your preamp (the way you describe it sounds like you don't have a preamp at all - modeled or real - which probably won't sound great).   However, the setup you describe in the first paragraph is correct: 

So what would I need to do to use the Fender's preamp? Say for instance I wanted to use the amp as my overall clean tone but use the helix for all of my distortions, delays, reverbs, etc? In that situation, would I even use the amp modelers/cabs through the Fender. Do I have the FX loop set up right for just using my Fender as a clean amp and the Helix as a pedal board? 

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20 minutes ago, jerryakisauce said:

So what would I need to do to use the Fender's preamp? Say for instance I wanted to use the amp as my overall clean tone but use the helix for all of my distortions, delays, reverbs, etc? In that situation, would I even use the amp modelers/cabs through the Fender. Do I have the FX loop set up right for just using my Fender as a clean amp and the Helix as a pedal board? 

So - we're assuming you currently have the Helix, Fender and cables set up as described in your first post; Guitar--->Helix-->Helix send-->Amp guitar input-->Power amp out-->Helix return-->Helix main out-->Power amp in

In the Helix, you either have an FX Loop block, or both a Send and Return block.  All effects you place in the Helix before the FX Loop (or send and return) will be before the Fender preamp - the FX loop will be the Fender preamp itself.  If you turn this block(s) off, you would be bypassing the fender preamp.  And all effects in the Helix after the FX loop will be after the preamp (what you typically say is "in the loop" of the amp in a more traditional setup).  

So, couple things to consider:
1) I have a very similar amp (a 1x12 Hot Rod Deluxe).  I know a lot of people use it as a pedal platform, but I've never liked the way it reacts to high gain pedals.  So, what I do is use the Fender preamp for clean sounds and light breakup sounds with pedals from the Helix, and then use a preamp in the Helix for high gain sounds.  To do this, first insert a Helix preamp right next to the FX loop, and bypass it.  Then assign that preamp AND the FX Loop to the SAME footswitch.  Now, when you step on that footswitch it will toggle between the Helix preamp and the FX loop (which is your Fender preamp).

2) If you are using the Fender as a clean platform, then you may get better results with a much simpler setup - simply place your effects in the Helix in the order that you normally would in a traditional pedalboard (distortions before reverb and delay, etc) and the plug the Helix straight into your amp.  No FX loop, no messing around with 4 Cable Method.  Coming from a high-gain/metal background, this is something I resisted for a long time, but after seeing the guys on That Pedal Show get such great results with it, this is now the method I use for non-metal gigs.  


Guitar -> Helix (all effects) -> Amp guitar input

 

3) Once you get a handle on the Helix, you can do all kinds of crazy setups with real amps.  For instance, I often run a Helix preamp in PARALLEL with my Fender preamp.  So I'm mixing the sound of my real preamp with Helix preamps.  You can get some very huge sounds this way.  Spend some time with the unit, and the flexibility of it will become pretty quickly apparent.  Just try not to get TOO lost in endless tweaking (fun though it is) and forget to actually play yer geetar. 

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Hello folks - same question. I recently purchased a Helix and am using a Fender HRD III 1X12.

So my question is this: when I use the 4CM, I lose complete control of all tone shaping and master volume. I know you lose control of the preamp but do you also lose volume control?

I, too, look to use my Fender's clean channel preamp and want to add distortion from an amp model because the distortion FX seem too dull. 

I've been trying out so many methods such as:
Front of Amp
4CM
Helix Output to Power Amp In

 

I set the settings to line level for 4CM on the 1/4" output. But the distortions and overall sound seem dull to me or too shrilly. 

Lastly, in reference to your instruction @MakeItShredNo1 - do you place the Helix preamp before the Fender Preamp (FX Loop) or after? You typed in right next to it but not sure in what direction. 

 

On 8/8/2018 at 11:26 AM, MakeItShredNo1 said:

So, couple things to consider:
1) I have a very similar amp (a 1x12 Hot Rod Deluxe).  I know a lot of people use it as a pedal platform, but I've never liked the way it reacts to high gain pedals.  So, what I do is use the Fender preamp for clean sounds and light breakup sounds with pedals from the Helix, and then use a preamp in the Helix for high gain sounds.  To do this, first insert a Helix preamp right next to the FX loop, and bypass it.  Then assign that preamp AND the FX Loop to the SAME footswitch.  Now, when you step on that footswitch it will toggle between the Helix preamp and the FX loop (which is your Fender preamp).

 

 

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22 hours ago, gtrdude72 said:

do you place the Helix preamp before the Fender Preamp (FX Loop) or after?

 

General Rule #1... when using an amps pre-amp, DO NOT USE a Helix Preamp model, and vice versa.

Anybody that is attempting to run both at the same time will experience very unpredictable results. You won't harm the unit, but your ears might not forgive you for the horrible tones they experience :) 

 

4CM allows you to use your amps pre-amp in place of a Helix model. People often setup the LOOP and the HELIX pre-amp model on a single toggle. When the loop is on (amplifier pre-amp) the helix amp is off.... when toggled, the loop turns off and the helix pre-amp is used. 

 

There is no reason you can't experiment.... I'm just laying out the general rule of thumb! 

 

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Hey codamedia, gtrdude72 is asking about a setup I suggested where the real preamp and helix preamp will never be on simultaneously.  So to answer your question gtrdude72, it doesn't matter what order the preamp and fx loop are in, just that they are next to one another. 

 

In my brain, I always set my boards up with increasing gain from left to right, so since I use the helix preamp for high gain, it goes after the fx loop. But in terms of tone, it makes zero difference (when set up as I suggested).

 

Later in that post I mentioned running helix and real preamps in parallel.  In that case, the helix preamp and fx loop must be on separate paths.

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The Fender Hot Rod is not really suitable for 4CM because, as gtrdude 72 said, you lose your tone shaping and volume control. Also, the power amp volume is wide open and VERY loud when you turn off the FX Loop block . You could insert a helix preamp and toggle it on and off with the loop ( preamp on, loop off and vice versa), but turn the volume down (on the helix preamp) first or you might get a very loud shock.

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I think there's an easier and more versatile setup for this than what anyone is describing above. I have a Hot Rod Deluxe and I run the Helix through the effects return of the Hot Rod. This bypasses the hot rod's preamp and you only use it as a power amp and speaker. Then, on the helix, you can select different preamp (or full amp) models. This allows you to have much more versatility than using the 4CM. Let's face it, you aren't going to be able to do high gain stuff (or even hard rock really) using the fender amp. But when you use it as power amp, now you can get all kinds of different amp sounds, like Marshall Plexi or PRS Archon or 5150, etc. And it's only one cable to connect it. I know that a lot of people think even this setup is wasting a lot of the Helix's capabilities, because you aren't using any of the cabinet or microphone simulations, and there is definitely some truth to this. However, using the Helix in the 4CM is like spending $2,000 on a digital pedalboard.

 

Another benefit of this is that it is very quick and easy to dial in a good tone. If you decide to go FRFR, there's a significantly steeper learning curve, as you really need to learn how to dial in the cabinet and microphone models properly. What you will quickly find out about the helix, or any other modeler, is that there are a lot of options on how to use them and there is no "best" way. It's all personal taste. You are going to have to try all of them and see what works for you. But based around your current gear, I still maintain that running it through the FX return of the fender if your best bet.

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This dude's 4cm explanation is very good IMO. I use an LT with a (higher gain than Fender) Blackstar combo amp but the idea is the same. I have some presets that use Helix amps and some that don't. You just have to get your hands dirty. Do it wrong a few times, then learn from your mistakes. There are no shortcuts.

 

 

 

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