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reggiedadog

Helix/Rig ideas for acoustic gigs?

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Hi all, first post here been lurking for ages- just upgraded from an HXFX to a Helix Floor as Im playing a lot of gigs in a variety of covers/function bands, with an even variety of sounds,  and needed something I could use for just about everything.

 

Only a few days in and at the moment am planning on gigging with my Helix as a pedalboard going into my DRRI but I suspect that I may go down the FRFR/FOH route at some point in the future as some of those amp models are fantastic (had a play through my studio monitors last night and the 'Matchless ones'- wow...) 

 

Anyway the point of all this is that my 'main' gig currently is acoustic, both as a solo singer and also in an acoustic based band. Currently using a Fishman EQ and a Play Acoustic for the solo into a Bose L1 and will possibly stick with that as I have no complaints. However my acoustic band want to do lots of covers that need some different boosts/delays etc so I want to use the Helix. Currently going into an AER compact 60 and DI into FOH but wondered if this is the optimal setup- is anyone using this setup or are you using FRFR instead?

 

Id there is an FRFR speaker out there that does the business for acoustic and electric that would make me a very happy man.  

 

Thanks in advance

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I don't believe you mentioned price range, but the LIne 6 L2T is an awesome option at $850.  I have/use one myself.  It has it's own built-in 2 channel mixer, both of which are designed specifically with acoustic guitar amplification as an option.  Use one channel for guitar and the other for voice,  or just one for guitar and send your microphone straight to FOH if you so choose.  I sold my favorite acoustic amp when I got this as the L2T is the best acoustic guitar amp I've ever played on.  I have an LT3 also but it's probably overkill for your purpose (and mo-money - and heavy/bigger).   Also at $850, the new Powercab Plus appears to be the L2T's equal as an acoustic amp but I just got mine and I'm still going through the learning curve.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poFczMisFYM

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Technically all of the modern crop of FRFR powered speakers from Alto to QSC to Yamaha to EV all work fine for acoustic and electric, obviously because those are the same speakers used on PAs for the audience.  I use a Yamaha DXR12 for both electric songs as well as acoustic (both hand-picking as well as strummed).  I position it behind me on stage on a half height speaker pole in the backline.  My acoustic also has a sound hole cover, but the sound on stage is magnificent.  Obviously you have to manage your volume more than with electric to avoid feedback, but it works fine for me in my configuration.  But that same signal is also going to the FOH so I only have to really fill the stage, not the audience.  In a smaller room it would probably still be fine.

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Why not continue using your L1?

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As has already been said well in the above, any flat response speaker system, as long as it's not a gimmicky one star pile of crap bought at a grocery store special, will do great with acoustic. That's the whole point of full range. 

 

Even better though, you already have a great one, and it didn't come cheap. So use that! The best deal will always be the one you already have. 

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Thanks all, so let me get this straight you are saying I should go to the L1 for my 'stage amp' and then to FOH?

I'd not thought of that and it would save me some cash- as someone said above I am thinking of stage volume rather than full backline volume

 

would that work for electric though? 

 

Richard

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I’ve been very happy with Fishman Loudbox varieties.  Tons of input choices, adjustability and delivers a nice stage fill either acoustic or electric guitar.  The later with proper amp modeling of course.  And it can serve as DI too.  

 

My problem(s) with L1/2 Bose stems from mixing them into conventional spherical stage speaker systems.  The drop-off in volume for given distance is completely different than conventional stage amplification.  L1 is still heard at the back of the room while the bass or combo guitar amp has dropped off within 30 feet.  

 

And the Bose upper mids kinda fatigue my ears after long exposure at high levels.  

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48 minutes ago, reggiedadog said:

Thanks all, so let me get this straight you are saying I should go to the L1 for my 'stage amp' and then to FOH?

I'd not thought of that and it would save me some cash- as someone said above I am thinking of stage volume rather than full backline volume

 

would that work for electric though? 

 

Richard

 

Will first, I don't own one. I only know what I see from the specs, and when I've heard one. 

 

I would at least try it first. The L1 was clearly designed first and foremost as an acoustic guitar and vocal combo option and that is the way it is advertised. It clearly has the frequency range you need. I've also seen electric guitar players happily use it because they first go through a modeler like the Helix that EQs it to where they like it. 

 

There are other considerations though. I don't know what size groups you play, or if you play with other people, and what they got. From what I know, stick yourself by another electric guitar player with a traditional amp and they'll probably bury you. 

 

That's why you can test it out. If it doesn't work then move on to buying something else. 

 

 

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If it were me, I would try the Floor with your L1 to see how you like it first. The beauty of the Floor model is that you have a mic input for vocals. You can send an output to your L1 and to FOH. You have PLENTY of inputs and outputs with the Floor. I've had my Floor for a few years now and am very happy with it in terms of ins/outs and it's built like a tank. I play electric primarily but some of my electrics have piezo pickups. Sometimes I play just acoustic. 

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I do solo acoustic shows with just my EV speaker (single one right now) and my Helix Floor.  I use the guitar/vocal preset tweaked to my liking, and run both into the respective inputs, and then out via XLR to the powered EV wedge, which I can place next to me, and angled right so that it is enough for me to use as a monitor...eventually I'll get a smaller 12" wedge for in front of me, and then run the Right output into that...or use the direct links on the back to daisy chain.

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I've used my L1 with a Helix and HX Effects, as well as vocals (mixed in). It works and sounds great. You need to roll off the highs a bit (as I would with any full range speaker for the Helix). Use the L1 as your personal monitor (PA for small rooms), and you can take a line out from it for FOH.

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This sounds like a silly question but if using my L1 would. I need the bass module as well? If so that means 4 extra cases to carry to gig and I was hoping to downsize...

 

thanks for all the help so far chaps and chapesses I really appreciate it 

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When I used L1 for live acoustic and amp modeling stage work I went back and forth with the subwoofer.  It really didn’t make that much difference for my guitar frequencies - more psychological than practical need.  

 

But I often brought it because I had it and I was always trying to mellow those harsh upper meds with the hope it would help.  It didn’t.  

Particularly OD tones.  In fact, those days were when the term “fizz” came into my nexus.  

 

Of course, Bass player and/or full range synth probably find need for it more than guitar.

 

You already have it so play around and determine if it works for you.  Trust your ears and find a pocket of sound you can work with on stage and in your venues.  

 

I ultimately gave up on the L1 mostly because it never matched the conventional stage monitors and amps being used on stages I work.  If everyone in the group used one it would probably be a different story.  But a full band/show production using only L1/2’s is fairly uncommon.  

 

My L1 sound carrying well so far from the stage compared to the other instruments rarely found a nice stage/FOH mix.  And those upper mids wore me out.  

 

YMMV….

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You for sure need the L1 woofer ... it adds nice low end to the guitar, you'll miss it without it. I got tired of carrying the darned thing around, so got an LD Systems Maui. Much lighter, easier, and sounds great.

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ok I tried the Bose today, it worked fine with an acoustic guitar but not for electric, especially with drive, and I cant see it competing with the rest of my band. 

 

Im going to make a trip and audition the Line 6 L2t  and Powercab plus this week.

 

The powercab/plus appeals to me for the 'amp in a room' setting for some of my noisier gigs, but has anyone tried it for acoustic? 

 

Thanks guys for your time this is really useful

 

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1 hour ago, reggiedadog said:

ok I tried the Bose today, it worked fine with an acoustic guitar but not for electric, especially with drive, and I cant see it competing with the rest of my band. 

 

Im going to make a trip and audition the Line 6 L2t  and Powercab plus this week.

 

The powercab/plus appeals to me for the 'amp in a room' setting for some of my noisier gigs, but has anyone tried it for acoustic? 

 

Thanks guys for your time this is really useful

 

 

I love the powercab series. Excellent for both.

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I have a couple of Alto 10" FRFR's that are plenty loud and work great as either one (coffe house), or in stereo ( pub). I also use them as electric/acoustic monitors for full band gigs.  Your setup seems cool. I will use the Helix Floor for Acoustic but mostly for duo situations. I figured out how to add a couple mini expressions so I have 3 pedals to do volume mix between my voice, my partners voice( input to Effect loop), and his guitar. My guitar I adjust with my ongboard volume. Sounds good. I will say though, that I have a Boss VE-8 which is a one and done guitar and vocal solution that I use with one Alto and is awesome for solo shows - which are usually very small anyway.

 

I bet you get a better overall sound with the Fishman and your speaker solution. All in all, I've tried to get the resonance modeling from the Boss in the Helix floor but I can't match it (yet). You absolutely can't beat the Helix for versatility and wide span of options though and need it once you add the other guy. Like you said, the options of delays and modulations and the like go up dramatically once you've set up the Helix.   I don't think I'd change your speaker setup. Its easy enough to buy and try and return a speaker if you want to give it a shot

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I tried the Powercab today and loved it, worked well with the helix for both acoustic and electric. They only had the powercab in so Ive ordered the powercab plus as Id like the ability to expand and change using midi. Cant wait to get my hands on it! 

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I have been using a Powercab+ for the last few gigs and really love it. I'm still keeping my two JBLEON610s and maybe will use them is a wet-dry-wet setup sometime. I'm mostly trying to minimize gig complexity and variability though. 

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so I bought the powercab + and took it to my practice with my acoustic based band last night- love it. I still need to RTFM and work out how to send a midi signal so I can automatically switch from flat mode to one of the speakers but I was able to set up a great acoustic patch, then switch over the clean electric for some of the electric songs. Fantastic sounds and great line out to the pa. 

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