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ryansparks

Using helix into tube amp to add distortion

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I've been looking around but can't find a clear awnser on this.

I have an old Vox Valvetronix 100w head and cab. Id like to use the high gain amp models but have them come through the cab. I understand that you need a power amp and i was hoping i could just connect the helix to the front, use an amp model going into the head ie 5150, then have that models sound come through the cab.

Would it work if I have my head on the clean channel, turned up to get the tubes going, then add a standard patch minus the cab sim? 

(If that would work, i assume that youd still get some minor colouring from the real amp)

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4 hours ago, ryansparks said:

I've been looking around but can't find a clear awnser on this.

I have an old Vox Valvetronix 100w head and cab. Id like to use the high gain amp models but have them come through the cab. I understand that you need a power amp and i was hoping i could just connect the helix to the front, use an amp model going into the head ie 5150, then have that models sound come through the cab.

Would it work if I have my head on the clean channel, turned up to get the tubes going, then add a standard patch minus the cab sim? 

(If that would work, i assume that youd still get some minor colouring from the real amp)

 

Will it work? Yes. Are you going to be happy with the results? Possibly, but don't bet the farm on it. If you run straight into the front of any amp, it will color the sound...but it certainly won't be minor. It's effectively daisy-chaining two amps together. In my experience this doesn't end well. 

 

Modelers can only do what they're designed to do to convincingly if your output is a clean slate. That means some sort of FRFR speaker solution. In other words, if you're looking for the sound of a Fender Twin, but you're pumping it through a Marshall amp and cab, you'll hear a whole lot more Marshall than Fender. 

 

Whether or not that result will appeal to you, is entirely up to you. 

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Try it. Use the amp's eq. Use the Helix preamp's eq. Use a full Helix amp and it's eq. Try a cab (no rules in digital land). Add Helix eq pedals. There's so many tone-shaping options in the Helix, you never know what might work.

 

Best bet - trade the Vox for a FRFR. Spend more time playing, less time tweaking.

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If the only reason you want to run it into the front end of the VOX is to include a tube in the tone, I think you will be terribly disappointed. I think you would be better off just running the Helix into the EFFECTS RETURN on the Vox... and still keep the cab/mic modeling turned off. IMO... the 5150 model will sound more realistic that way than it will with the VOX Preamp imparted on it's tone. 

 

Just my 2 cents...

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25 minutes ago, codamedia said:

If the only reason you want to run it into the front end of the VOX is to include a tube in the tone, I think you will be terribly disappointed. I think you would be better off just running the Helix into the EFFECTS RETURN on the Vox... and still keep the cab/mic modeling turned off. IMO... the 5150 model will sound more realistic that way than it will with the VOX Preamp imparted on it's tone. 

 

Just my 2 cents...

 

My 2 cents was based on a false assumption, that, like the combo, the head didn't have an FX Loop. Codamedia is right, you're much better off running the Helix into the FX Return. Better yet, use 4cm and have the benefit of being able to use the Helix preamps OR the Vox preamp.

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44 minutes ago, rd2rk said:

 

My 2 cents was based on a false assumption, that, like the combo, the head didn't have an FX Loop. Codamedia is right, you're much better off running the Helix into the FX Return. Better yet, use 4cm and have the benefit of being able to use the Helix preamps OR the Vox preamp.

 

This is where I fall too. In my opinion your best result is four cable method and either NO amp modeling or ONLY preamp modeling with your Vox doing the amp part.

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23 minutes ago, Kilrahi said:

 

This is where I fall too. In my opinion your best result is four cable method and either NO amp modeling or ONLY preamp modeling with your Vox doing the amp part.

 

Keeping in mind that you can do both in a given preset by setting a FS to toggle Helix preamp OFF/FX Loop Block ON (Vox preamp active) OR Helix Preamp ON/FX Loop Block OFF (Helix preamp to Vox FX Return, Vox preamp inactive. Best of both worlds.

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Thanks guys! I'll give it a shot with the 4CM but im thinking it'll probably be better if I part ways with the vox and get something like the powercab, the tube factor is cool and all but i really only want it so i have the feel of an amp in the room more than anything 

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