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thestringslinger

HX Stomp as Amp Sim with 3rd Party IRs

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It's a Sunday night and I'm wondering how many other players out there use the Stomp for amp-less gigs?  Thats why I got it, as basically every gig I do now is sans amp (I know, the horror!).  I want to make sure I'm clear on incorporating 3rd party IRs with the rest of the amp simulations.  Let's say my signal chain is guitar->wah->comp->ODs->HXStomp->DI and then in the snake out to the console.  Within the Stomp, let's say I wish to only use time-based effects and the "4-cable" method.  My first block is a pre-amp, two blocks of effects, then I'm left with 3 open slots. 

 

To finish the rest of my "amp," should I need 3 blocks: amp, cab, and IR file?

Or the Amp/Cab 2-in-1 block and an IR block?

Do you even need the Cab block if you're using an IR?  So just Amp and IR?

Lastly, are the amp options the whole amp (pre and power), so does that mesh well with having the individual pre-amp in the first block position?  Reading through the manual, at first I thought the individual Amps (without Cabs) were just the power section, but I think that was a wrong assumption.  

 

(I've just read some comments tonight in another thread that a DI may not be necessary, so ignore that for now).  Thanks!

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I think you'll find most users on here skip the real traditional amp (well, unless they're HX Effects users). 

 

I don't see much point in using a pre-amp in your scenario. I guess if you like coloring it. Standard use is either amp + cab or amp + IR. The IR is a substitute for the cab, so no, don't layer them up (unless you split path it - that's another thing entirely though). 

 

It's not technically BAD to have a pre-amp - but I think they are higher usage DSP and it's kind of like having a pre-amp in real life feed into a full amplifier+Cab. There are peeps who do it on here on purpose and treat pre-amps kind of like distortion pedals. Those users tend to be full Helix users though.

 

Because the Stomp has fewer blocks and oomph, I usually focus on getting there by either changing the amp/cab blocks through snapshot changes, OR through distortion pedals. 

 

Ultimately though, you're not going to break it. If it sounds awesome - SWEET - keep it. Still, what I describe above is the traditional starting point. 

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The only reason anyone uses the 4 cable method is that they are using a real amp for their main tone and only want to use the Helix (stomp in your case) for effects,

When using an amp sim you can use a helix cab or an IR - not both.

The amps are entire amps - but don't get confused about that - the best place to put effects you don't want in front of your amp so they interact with the preamp, is at the end of the chain.  That's what happens in a studio - so after the cab and mic simulation.  The only reason anyone puts it between the preamp and power amp in a valve amp rig is that's the place you get the least amp effect and your reverb or delay can be as clean as possible in that type of rig - placed after everything is the way you do it in a studio and gives the most beautiful delays. (and a lot of the delays and reverbs have controls to roll off the highs etc to make the effect less hifi if that's what you want)

So if you plan to use the HX Stomp with a batch of real effects pedals and you are mostly looking to the stomp for amp sims and clean effects - you would put all the things you would generally put into the front of your amp before the Stomp.  You would then start in the stomp with an amp and say cab or IR and then you would have delay, reverb and anything else you wanted to use post amp (maybe leslie say in stereo? - whatever),

This is not the only way to do it, you can use Helix sends and returns but the idea of using the preamp out on a traditional amp is not very useful when you have the full chain in the digital world and uses up blocks.

The preamps are probably not much use in your scenario - with a limited number of blocks in the Stomp, I don't think I'd be using them.  You have everything from the full Helix, but that doesn't mean you have to use them in the striped down world of a Stomp.

You should not need a DI to feed FOH.

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The "Amp" models have both the preamp and power section. The "preamp" models are just preamps, so using a preamp into an amp model could be redundant and color your tone in undesired ways than if you are looking for a pure amp tone. That being said, some users do use a "preamp" model as an overdrive/distortion going into an amp model.

Cabinet IRs are used in place of Helix cabs, so when using an IR you'll have an "Amp" block and an "IR" block. 

If you are running your external effects directly into Stomp or in front of your amp models you don't need to go the 4 cable method route. 

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14 hours ago, thestringslinger said:

 

 

To finish the rest of my "amp," should I need 3 blocks: amp, cab, and IR file?

Or the Amp/Cab 2-in-1 block and an IR block?

Do you even need the Cab block if you're using an IR?  So just Amp and IR?

 

It's really one or the other... if you're using IR's, that is your cab sim. Doubling up with one of Helix's native cab blocks will sound awful, with one exception: running them in parallel and blending the sound of two different cabinets. That you might like...but given the Stomp's 6 block limit, it's probably not a great idea to chew up 2 with cab sims. Regardless, under no circumstances do you never want to daisy chain a cab block and an IR..... that's guaranteed terribleness. 

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Thanks for the replies ya'll (would have said that earlier, but forgot to click on notifications).  I later in the week learned/realized that "cab" = IR.  The Cab block with IR is indeed "guaranteed terribleness."  I'm at a point now where I have some real usable sounds.  In the Stomp have the Amp, IR, then two effects (delays or reverbs usually).  Though the one I ended up using a lot on last night's gig was a Plexi, that was just the Amp/Cab block (no IR), so go figure.

 

Quick question/observation:  Speaking of last night's gig.  There were times in which the sound almost fluttered, like vibrato.  It wasn't constant, but here and there the sound wavered.  Maybe a power issue, or DSP issue?  I would only have 4 blocks on at max.  I was going into the Stomp with some ODs before it, then went out of the Stomp to a DI, then to the board.  Anyone else experience this?  Thanks again

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32 minutes ago, thestringslinger said:

Thanks for the replies ya'll (would have said that earlier, but forgot to click on notifications).  I later in the week learned/realized that "cab" = IR.  The Cab block with IR is indeed "guaranteed terribleness."  I'm at a point now where I have some real usable sounds.  In the Stomp have the Amp, IR, then two effects (delays or reverbs usually).  Though the one I ended up using a lot on last night's gig was a Plexi, that was just the Amp/Cab block (no IR), so go figure.

 

Quick question/observation:  Speaking of last night's gig.  There were times in which the sound almost fluttered, like vibrato.  It wasn't constant, but here and there the sound wavered.  Maybe a power issue, or DSP issue?  I would only have 4 blocks on at max.  I was going into the Stomp with some ODs before it, then went out of the Stomp to a DI, then to the board.  Anyone else experience this?  Thanks again

 

I can't say I've experienced this.  I can confirm that it's not a DSP issue.  The Stomp is designed so that either you can use the block with no harmful results, or you can't. There's no in between. 

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36 minutes ago, thestringslinger said:

Quick question/observation:  Speaking of last night's gig.  There were times in which the sound almost fluttered, like vibrato.  It wasn't constant, but here and there the sound wavered.  Maybe a power issue, or DSP issue?  I would only have 4 blocks on at max.  I was going into the Stomp with some ODs before it, then went out of the Stomp to a DI, then to the board.  Anyone else experience this?  Thanks again

 

I cannot say this is what happened to you, however … I did have this happen at a recent venue due to the Sound Engineer compressing my mix at the board level.  However, now I wish I would have asked which specific type of compression he had applied or was he trying several types so I could give a quantitative answer and not a qualitative one.  I started to think it was some hardware piece of my gear until he told me; it was during sound check so I had the luxury of stopping and asking if anyone else was hearing what I was hearing.

 

Dennis

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4 hours ago, jpdennis said:

 

I cannot say this is what happened to you, however … I did have this happen at a recent venue due to the Sound Engineer compressing my mix at the board level.  However, now I wish I would have asked which specific type of compression he had applied or was he trying several types so I could give a quantitative answer and not a qualitative one.  I started to think it was some hardware piece of my gear until he told me; it was during sound check so I had the luxury of stopping and asking if anyone else was hearing what I was hearing.

 

Dennis

 

I wonder if that was it.  We use IEMs, so there could have been some compression on the mix to our ears.  Thanks, I'll double check this on tomorrow's gig.

 

 

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