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crossthestyx

POD HD 500X Live Setup Tips?

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Hey guys, recently bought the POD500X, and I'm having some issues with live sound. I run it strait to a behringer KM750, which is just a power amp, then into a Blackstar Series One 4x12 loaded with vintage 30's. And to be quite honest the unit sounds like a twinkie. Now the cabinet is a little cold for a vintage 30's cab, and I've done the "treat the amp mods like a tube amp" ie. volume and master volume-find the sweet spot, however the unit still sounds like a peanut in a can. Essentially there's little bottom end at all even eq'd. I've heard this thing sound phenomenal plugged into a daw, and it seems like all the players that use this floorboard are bedroom recorders, but I play live shows as well and was wonder if you guys had any tips. Thanks in advance.

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I've used my POD for both home recording and for playing live, and there were definitely hurdles to get over with the live sound.  My problem was getting my chosen tone to mix well with the rest of the band, because I liked my tone by itself but it disappeared in the mix.

 

I realize you're not having the same problem I had, so I'll just give you some things that I tweaked in order to get a sound that I liked.  The most important thing was the microphone choice.  I liked the SM57 when I was recording, but with the band that just didn't have enough body, so I tried every different microphone until I found one that carried better.  In fact, the mic that I decided on gave my tone a lot of body.  I don't love that tone by itself, but with the band it sounds great.  (I'd tell you which mic model I use, but I forget, lol).

 

I also went direct into our PA, and I liked that a lot.  My goal with using the POD was to not have an amp to lug around, so I just plugged into the mixer and sent it to the mains and the monitors.  That's important because the speakers in the mains added some low end for me.

 

Cabinet settings were something that I also tweaked a lot, and I sometimes used dual amps/cabs to give me some more body to the tone.  Those are things you can try, but for me the magic really came when I found a mic that sat better in our mix.

 

The last piece of advice I have is, be patient, and tweak as much as you can while you have your live setup there.  I did a lot of tweaking at home, then going to practice to see how it sounded, and that's a real pain.  Listening on whatever you'll use live is the only way to hear how it will sound, because even FRFR speakers will all sound a little different.

 

I hope this helps.  Stay positive.  You can definitely use the POD live, it's just a different animal than an amp but to me it's worth the extra effort.

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Global Settings... Stack Power Amp Output! That will thicken your tones, and should solve the problem across all pre-sets. It's the EASIEST way to get betters tones from a setup like you have. Personally... I think there are better ways, but start there! 

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If you don't mind me asking. On the hd500 global settings where did you set the eq at? For example , Bass setting, focus setting and treble setting. I always find my guitar tone to be very thin ,trebbly even when I role these setting  back without using the amp models. Any suggestions for a good starting point. Thanks 

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6 hours ago, rmaginnis said:

For example , Bass setting, focus setting and treble setting. I always find my guitar tone to be very thin ,trebbly even when I role these setting  back without using the amp models.

 

Are you talking about the "Stack Power Amp ouput mode" that I mention in the post above?

If so, what are you connecting to, what is your setup? If you are using that mode, why aren't you using any amp models? 

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10 hours ago, codamedia said:

 

Are you talking about the "Stack Power Amp ouput mode" that I mention in the post above?

If so, what are you connecting to, what is your setup? If you are using that mode, why aren't you using any amp models? 

Thank you so much for your reply.Yes, I switched from combo front too Stack Front which seemed to thicken the sound. I use a JtV 69 through a Vox AC 15. I have the Lows set to -4,  Focus at 620 and treble at -47. I find that I'm the trebbly one of the bunch and loose definition in my sound when I reduce treble and Brite. I'm a little confused as to where the best settings are in the eq settings above. Yes I do use amp modeling but sometimes less is better. 

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The setting I suggested was for the HD used as an amp modeler, into a power amp, into a 4x12 cabinet. 

 

You appear to be using the HD500 for EFFECTS ONLY into the front of a VOX AC15. That's a completely different approach. You tone need to start from your amp... not from the HD.

 

I would run the HD500 in Studio Direct Mode, and don't use any amp/cab/mic modeling and don't use the global EQ. 

  1. Get a good tone on your amp... Guitar to amp, nothing more.
  2. Plug in the HD 500 with NO EFFECTS turned on. Set the output to Instrument then turn up the master master until the guitar to amp is the same as it was in step one. It should be very high, if not full. 
  3. Now add in each of the effects paying close attention to levels and tones. Make sure each effect gives you what you want, at the proper levels. 

It's just like setting up a standard pedal board when used this way. The trick is step two... making sure you have the HD volume set appropriately to start with so the amp doesn't get pushed to hard, or starved of input. 

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As a new user, you can either expect to take the next few months learning the ins-and-outs of the unit and its various functions before determining the best way to run it. 

Or, you can leave the global settings as is, and try to "work with what you got". 

 

Think about it. If your gear was stolen 3 hours before showtime, and you could only find "Gear X" to perform with... 

You don't have the time to figure it out. You just have to work with it. 

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On 1/8/2019 at 4:00 PM, codamedia said:
  1.  
  2. Plug in the HD 500 with NO EFFECTS turned on. Set the output to Instrument then turn up the master master until the guitar to amp is the same as it was in step one. It should be very high, if not full.

This whole post was a very good explanation by codamedia on the approach. I just wanted to add that this is the way I did it when I originally set up my HD500X. The only difference was my amp was a Fender Twin '65 R. I had to use the Studio EQ at the front with a gain level of +12 to match them up with the Master 'all the way to 11!' So, if you've got the master all the way up and you don't hit the right level, this is another option. Follow codamedia's advice on this one....it's spot-on the best approach to this for the way you're using it.

 

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On 1/7/2019 at 1:38 PM, hurghanico said:

So basically you are using a flat response power amp connected to a 4x12 guitar cab which surely is not flat response, thus coloring the final tone..

All about POD HD500/X

 

You hit the nail on the head bro. lol Looking at FR FR's now. They're just twice the money of a good cab, and most people are getting some colorization from their guitar head anyway. Also, I'm old school, not hauling computers/daws to the dives around here. lol.. ;) I'm looking for some strait consistency and control without doing that.  I've got it sounding pretty close to my old HD 147 right now. Still needs work however. Trying it through a PA this week. Thanks for the response buddy!  :)

 

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On 1/7/2019 at 2:30 PM, barks62 said:

I also went direct into our PA, and I liked that a lot.  My goal with using the POD was to not have an amp to lug around, so I just plugged into the mixer and sent it to the mains and the monitors.  That's important because the speakers in the mains added some low end for me.

Cabinet settings were something that I also tweaked a lot, and I sometimes used dual amps/cabs to give me some more body to the tone.  Those are things you can try, but for me the magic really came when I found a mic that sat better in our mix.

The last piece of advice I have is, be patient, and tweak as much as you can while you have your live setup there.  I did a lot of tweaking at home, then going to practice to see how it sounded, and that's a real pain.  Listening on whatever you'll use live is the only way to hear how it will sound, because even FRFR speakers will all sound a little different.

I hope this helps.  Stay positive.  You can definitely use the POD live, it's just a different animal than an amp but to me it's worth the extra effort.

 

Great Advice! Thanks.

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On 1/7/2019 at 3:37 PM, codamedia said:

Global Settings... Stack Power Amp Output! That will thicken your tones, and should solve the problem across all pre-sets. It's the EASIEST way to get betters tones from a setup like you have. Personally... I think there are better ways, but start there! 

 

Definitely makes a difference. Thanks.

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On 1/9/2019 at 1:14 PM, pianoguyy said:

As a new user, you can either expect to take the next few months learning the ins-and-outs of the unit and its various functions before determining the best way to run it. 

Or, you can leave the global settings as is, and try to "work with what you got". 

 

Think about it. If your gear was stolen 3 hours before showtime, and you could only find "Gear X" to perform with... 

You don't have the time to figure it out. You just have to work with it. 

 

You're right about the learning curve. This isn't my first digital board however.  No, had to change the global settings, that was 50% of my problem. At this point I'll be taking a an old HD 147 I have with me as a back up. I love the the sound of it, but it's freaken 20 or more years old. Just waiting for it to take sh*t. That's why I bought the POD man. lol  Thanks for the response. :)

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Ok, so I'm gonna answer my own question here.

 

For plugging into an Amp do the following:

 

1) Flip the switch near the expression pedal to that says 1/4" to "Amp."

2) Hold down the "View" button (top left) for a second until the menu that says "Import Source" comes up.

3) Change "Source" to Guitar, change the the impedance value to 3.5m for "full frequency response." Choose lower value for less.

     (See page 2.5 of the PODHDX500 Advanced Guide.)

4) Pan down, and set the "Input Source" to "Same and "Global."

5) Pan down again to "Outputs" and set to "Combo Amp"

6) Hit the "Save" button.

7) Confirm All Your Values Are Saved.

 

* 8) Optional. Put an eq at the end of all your chains.

 

This should help get you started on your live sound. It helped me.

Hope that helps.

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Don't do #4 and #5.

 

Bottom line is build your tones with whatever you're going to use on stage or where ever you play.  If you're gonn'a play through an amp and speakers build your tones for that.  If you're gonn'a plug into a sound system and use a monitor, build you tones for that.  You can't build a universal tone that will work with everything.  I guess you could if you don't mind your tone not sounding that good.

 

If you play an MP3 through a sound system it sounds great.  Play the same MP3 through a guitar amp and cab and it sounds like crap.  Can't expect your PODHD to sound the same through both without some changes.

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crossthestyx, if you are still not happy with your tone through the guitar cabinet, maybe get a used DT25 or DT50. They are a perfect match. Sure, you may even consider a regular tube amp, and the DT50 is a heavy beast to lug around, but if you like to have the flexibility of the POD, for me these are the two best solutions:

 

POD with FRFR (and don't get a cheap one)

POD with DT25/DT50

 

I haven't tried a POD through the new Powercabs from Line 6.

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I realize that "your sound" is your sound. And not all of us are in the same professional situation. 

But, ultimately, if you think about it, no one should be using amps on stage anymore. Everyone should be using modelers and monitors. 

 

Little artists, where a stage amp can over power a small PA and blow out an entire room. They should dump the amps to sound more professional. 

Medium artists, where a stage amp can interfere with the house mix should dump the amps to sound more professional. 

Big artists, where you aren't going to hear your own amps if you walk to the other side of the stage have been using floor or ear monitors for decades. Why bother having an amp. 

 

 

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