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grom68

TS 1/4 outputs

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In the manual I can find that these outputs are for unbalanced signals to an amplifier or to a PA. I'm wondering if I can use these outputs to connect in a balanced mode to a mixer (in order to cancel   the noise), using balanced jack cables.

 

Many thanks

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Well, technically you can, but the best way to do that is to use a direct box, which would actually convert the unbalanced signal to a balanced signal. Simply connecting balanced cables to an unbalanced jack will not make it balanced. You’ll get a signal, but the signal will be attenuated by about 3dB.

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So you're confirming that the Helix 1/4 outputs are definitively unbalanced, correct?

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If the manual says they're unbalanced, then they're unbalanced...it's a better confirmation than the testimony of strangers on a forum. Not a whole lot of room for interpretation on this one...

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On 11/6/2018 at 12:43 PM, grom68 said:

In the manual I can find that these outputs are for unbalanced signals to an amplifier or to a PA. I'm wondering if I can use these outputs to connect in a balanced mode to a mixer (in order to cancel   the noise), using balanced jack cables.

 

Many thanks

I'll ask again - why don't you just use the XLRs?  Or am I missing something?

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I use them. Just in case the mixer is full, to understand if an alternativa option is available

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actually there is this interesting article by a line 6 moderator that contradicts the manual and says that all outputs on the Helix, including sends, are TRS impedance balanced !

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, perapera said:

actually there is this interesting article by a line 6 moderator that contradicts the manual and says that all outputs on the Helix, including sends, are TRS impedance balanced !


What you find in the manual is "cable recommendation opinion", not specification. The manual does not contain any specs. You will find partial specs here:

 

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On 11/6/2018 at 9:33 AM, grom68 said:

So you're confirming that the Helix 1/4 outputs are definitively unbalanced, correct?

 

Yea they are 1/4" T-S (and no ring) unbalanced line outs, right next to the 2 XLR outs.

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From the manual- I don't understand why this info was worth a down vote?

 

Quote

26. 1/4” OUT Use unbalanced 1/4" TS cables to connect to your guitar amp, FRFR speaker(s), studio monitors, or other playback system. When using a single amp or speaker, connect only the LEFT/MONO 1/4” jack

 

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An anonymous manual author recommends usage of 1/4" TS cables. It is hard to figure out why. He does not claim outputs are TS. They are TRS impedance balanced.
Confirming they are TS after the manual, which does not contain any information about it, is misleading and deserves down vote.

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1 minute ago, zolko60 said:

An anonymous manual author recommends usage of 1/4" TS cables. It is hard to figure out why. He does not claim outputs are TS. They are TRS impedance balanced.
Confirming they are TS after the manual, which does not contain any information about it, is misleading and deserves down vote.

 

The author of the manual isn't anonymous. @Digital_Igloo writes the manuals... I think they're recommending TS cables just so people don't think they need to go buy TRS cables. Most gear you'd be plugging the 1/4" outs into won't have TRS jacks, so there's a very minimal benefit of using TRS cables - perhaps some very limited common mode noise reduction, but nothing to write home about, as they say.

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Just to manage expectations - Line 6 has previously stated that manuals will be updated only with 'major' releases. A major release is an increase of the integer portion of the release number. The next manual update will coincide with firmware release v3.0, not v2.x.

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On 6/20/2019 at 7:12 PM, zolko60 said:

 


What you find in the manual is "cable recommendation opinion", not specification. The manual does not contain any specs. You will find partial specs here:

 

 

thanks zolko60 for poiting me to the specifications article

 

then I ask myself: why would a company spend money to have on their product 6x TRS jacks and the relative impedance balancing circuit (not a lot of money but money anyway) and write about it only on a forum and let people think they are TS by suggesting to use TS cables in the manual?!?

 

just to not scary people?! or to avoid that people buy TRS cables?! what about just writing "use TS cables to go to unbalanced gear, use TRS cables to go to balanced gear" ?

 

on old products there used to be an "advanced guide" and a "pilot's guide" or something like that ... it was way less insulting than being treated as dumb people

 

sorry for the ranting...

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then I ask myself: why would a company spend money to have on their product 6x TRS jacks and the relative impedance balancing circuit (not a lot of money but money anyway) and write about it only on a forum and let people think they are TS by suggesting to use TS cables in the manual?!?

 

Quote

what about just writing "use TS cables to go to unbalanced gear, use TRS cables to go to balanced gear" ?

 

Besides the deadlines and commitments and me being a Negative Nancy" about how things got written in the past, It takes time to write stuff in a way "everyone" understands, or try to.  Almost impossible to do. In the meantime just use regular T/S cables on the outputs and aux ports because they seem to work for everyone. Why? Because as it states in the reference above-  "Although all the outputs use TRS jacks, they are not true balanced outputs. They are only impedance-balanced."  . ; )

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There are lots of "whys" in case of Line6, but I think is it is common trend to save customers from "scary" knowledge nowadays.
The article you have found is interesting because that is the only trace of full scale levels values published by L6 employee.
It states what I can confirm: When the Helix outputs are set to line level, they are +4dBU nominal with approximately 15dB of headroom. Yes! 19dBu full scale.
...and claim something not trueWhen set to instrument level, they -10bBu. No! Anybody can make an experiment connecting output set to line level to DAW then switch to instrument level and check it is exactly 8dB lower what equals to 11dBu full scale (or -4dBu "nominal" with 15dB of headroom).

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Good luck in your efforts zolko60. I wish you success in getting a re-written and correct manual. ; )

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On 6/22/2019 at 3:04 PM, zolko60 said:

Anybody can make an experiment connecting output set to line level to DAW then switch to instrument level and check it is exactly 8dB lower

 

yes, I can confirm that

and also sends work the same way (-8dB for instrument) while returns compensate by  attenuating by -8dB when in line mode

 

 

 

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Thank you. That's great scientific work! I forgot to check what is the pad attenuation value on guitar input and what is the full scale value when XLR output is set to microphone level.

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I measured the guitar in pad at -5,5dB

 

the XLR outs at line level have the same level as the jack outs

when switched to mic it's -11dB less (which is not so much for a line/mic switch by the way)

 

the aux in, which has a fixed impedance of 10kOhm, compared to the guitar input when also set to 10kohm, has 7,5dB less

 

 

another interesting fact is that the signal chain:

 

guitar input (no-pad, 1Mohm) > unity gain blank patch > master volume at maximum > Left Jack output "Instrument"

 

is at unity gain (the input level equals the otuput level)

 

(this setup is thought for going to the input of a real amp using the Helix as a "pre-amp pedalboard" so it's at unity as many bypassed effect pedals are)

 

 

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4 minutes ago, perapera said:

guitar input (no-pad, 1Mohm) > unity gain blank patch > master volume at maximum > Left Jack output "Instrument" is at unity gain (the input level equals the otuput level)

Yes, I can confirm that. All sends and outputs (TRS) set to the same level give the same results.
The returns set to instrument level appear to be the same as guitar input.

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14 minutes ago, zolko60 said:

The returns set to instrument level appear to be the same as guitar input.

 

yes and in the article you linked above it says they have 1Mohm impedance

this means that returns are in general more appropriate as auxiliary guitar/bass inputs than the aux in !

 

 

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1 hour ago, perapera said:

this means that returns are in general more appropriate as auxiliary guitar/bass inputs than the aux in !

Since active pickups output impedance is about 10kohm then the manual recommendation of connecting them to aux in can be a little bit controversial.

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