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timmyo

Volume matching patches - what's your process?

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Anyone got a neat way of doing this so that time faffing with it in the rehearsal room / jam night is minimised? 

 

The only simple way I can think of right now is to hook up a DAW via USB - any other suggestions? 

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I use DAW or Orban Loudness Meter over USB. You can also use a dB meter on your phone with your FRFR. Works great and is very simple and easy to use.

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My ears. Don't mean to be snarky but I don't believe patches should be the same volume. My clean rhythm and semi-dirt rhythm sounds are about the same volume; distorted power chord/riff sounds are louder and lead sounds are loudest. I try to mix the way I imagine it would be mixed on an album. A great thing about Helix is that you can change the volume of a patch on the fly in one or two seconds. I always save my patches so that their volumes are instantly accessible. If my channel volume is maxed out, I have the cab volume on the ready. I'll tweak patch volumes on the fly at rehearsals and even at gigs (if there's an opportunity like a one or two bar rest in a tune). Eventually all of my patch volumes are exactly where I want them to be, which is the case now. 

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2 hours ago, erniedenov said:

My ears. Don't mean to be snarky but I don't believe patches should be the same volume. My clean rhythm and semi-dirt rhythm sounds are about the same volume; distorted power chord/riff sounds are louder and lead sounds are loudest. I try to mix the way I imagine it would be mixed on an album. A great thing about Helix is that you can change the volume of a patch on the fly in one or two seconds. I always save my patches so that their volumes are instantly accessible. If my channel volume is maxed out, I have the cab volume on the ready. I'll tweak patch volumes on the fly at rehearsals and even at gigs (if there's an opportunity like a one or two bar rest in a tune). Eventually all of my patch volumes are exactly where I want them to be, which is the case now. 

 

+1... though I must admit I will never understand why this topic generates so much discussion. It's like having a debate over the best way to tie shoes. Just do it... assuming that you can emerge from the experience without having lashed your fingers to the tops of your Nikes, then victory is yours! ;)

 

Besides... thanks to biology (and our friends Fletcher and Munson for figuring it all out), the relative volume of one tone to the next is really a matter of perception, not quantifiable absolutes...and perception is forever variable, no matter what the numbers are. Meters might help you get in the ballpark, but until you're actually playing in the mix with other instruments at stage volume, you simply don't know what adjustments might be necessary. Regardless, there is no magic device or protocol that one can apply outside of a mix, that will be foolproof in getting it done, because the circumstances, listening environment, and overall volume (especially the volume) all matter. Sometimes a lot, sometimes a little...and sometimes everything sounds like $hit merely because it's Tuesday, and you're cranky that the boss made you work through lunch. 

 

Listening and adjusting accordingly works 100% of the time, however... but there's no way to do a complete end run around the grunt work. Relative levels that were "ideal" at one gig or rehearsal, might not be at the next, for any of 1000 reasons...and that's never gonna change.

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