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talonmm

Should us "hobbyists" be doing so many updates?

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I love the helix line - these free firware updates have been wonderful. With the updates, and the tone downloads available, my sound is getting better and better!

 

With that said, I was quick to update to 2.8 and like most others, did not have an issue upgrading. 

 

But some did, and then when 2.81 came out, it seemed like it the new firware fixed some bugs, but not all;  and perhaps added some new bugs too.

 

For the first time, I was very hesitant about upgrading again to the latest firmware update (2.81).

 

I have no upcoming gigs on the calendar, so if I discover a bug or a problem, it won't affect me much (playing out is another matter, and that's why I titled this thread with "hobbyists").

 

If I upgrade these small-incremental updates successfully (ie. going form 2.8 to 2.81, the improvement is marginal at best, and if I encounter a problem and my helix becomes a brick and unresponsive to rollbacks or repeated attempts to redo the upgrade, I have a headache that would probably require shipping the unit somewhere or driving 30 miles to a service center and who knows how long it will be out of commission.

 

The good news is the chances that so many updates will work as they should is quite high.  The bad news is that the downside of a failed update could be huge.

 

And these secondary updates to fix some bugs are so marginal in improvements, I am wondering if it's worthwhile to keep up with the latest updates versus only doing them if my unit is affected with a bug.  It seems like we're all playing Russian Roulette.

 

One last thought:  I believe as a frequent down-loader to the free helix tones, there's no need to jump from 2.8 to 2.81 - as the custom tones should all work with 2.8 and/or 2.81?  Is that assumption correct?

 

I'd like to hear from other "hobbyists" how they feel about this, since I totally understand the need to upgrade if you are a gigging musician with your Helix.

 

 

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42 minutes ago, talonmm said:

I'd like to hear from other "hobbyists" how they feel about this, since I totally understand the need to upgrade if you are a gigging musician with your Helix.

 

Well... I'm a gigging musician so you are not officially asking "me"...but I'd like to give my 2 cents on this. I really think you have this reversed. 

 

There is no "need to upgrade" for a gigging musician.... actually it's quite the opposite since they already have a setup that gets the job done. Many (if not most) gigging musicians will stay behind the "cutting edge" to allow the release to mature (via dot release) before diving in to do the update.

 

A hobbyist does not have this worry. Outside of a little aggravation they are free to experiment all they want without consequence. Why wouldn't you upgrade? 

 

This is the same that happens in the business world. Major business' do not update their software just because a new release came out... they wait until it matures first. The home user will usually push "update" the moment it's available. 

 

42 minutes ago, talonmm said:

For the first time, I was very hesitant about upgrading again to the latest firmware update (2.81).

 

2.81 is known as a "dot release". It does not introduce any new features of it's own, instead It fixes the bugs from the previous release (in this case 2.80). Dot releases are the ones you should update to with the least hesitation. Even if it still isn't perfect, it's still a more stable version of its predecessor. 

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12 minutes ago, codamedia said:

 

Well... I'm a gigging musician so you are not officially asking "me"...but I'd like to give my 2 cents on this. I really think you have this reversed. 

 

There is no "need to upgrade" for a gigging musician.... actually it's quite the opposite since they already have a setup that gets the job done. Many (if not most) gigging musicians will stay behind the "cutting edge" to allow the release to mature (via dot release) before diving in to do the update.

 

A hobbyist does not have this worry. Outside of a little aggravation they are free to experiment all they want without consequence. Why wouldn't you upgrade? 

 

This is the same that happens in the business world. Major business' do not update their software just because a new release came out... they wait until it matures first. The home user will usually push "update" the moment it's available. 

 

 

2.81 is known as a "dot release". It does not introduce any new features of it's own, instead It fixes the bugs from the previous release (in this case 2.80). Dot releases are the ones you should update to with the least hesitation. Even if it still isn't perfect, it's still a more stable version of its predecessor. 

 

We see this differently.

 

I meant if a gigging musician updated to 2.8 and he discovers like some did, that the la comp is causing loudness issues on his tones, he is going to have to upgrade asap to 2.81. 

 

Although you feel that dot releases are the ones we should update to with the least hesitation, there are some on this forum site that had their systems brick going from 2.8 to 2.81.  So that's why I stated this thread asking if marginal updates are worth it to those of us who do not gig much with our helix.

 

Then you ask why wouldn't I upgrade?  I am just wondering if a possible bricked unit (yes I know the chances of this are low) and the headache of sending the machine in for repair are worth it?  I'd like to hear what others think.

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I also play just for pleasure and I agree with codemaania, it's not bread and nutter for me, so I'll generally take the plunge.  I'd probably hold off for a while if I was gigging.

 

EDIT:  That's supposed to be "....bread and BUTTER"  LOL

 

 

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34 minutes ago, talonmm said:

Although you feel that dot releases are the ones we should update to with the least hesitation, there are some on this forum site that had their systems brick going from 2.8 to 2.81.  So that's why I stated this thread asking if marginal updates are worth it to those of us who do not gig much with our helix.

 

Of course there are exceptions.... If 2.81 does not address a problem you are having with 2.8... or if 2.8 is simply not a problem for you.... then nobody is twisting your arm to update. But the same would apply to a gigging musician wouldn't it? He doesn't HAVE TO update if he doesn't have a problem with the previous version. 

 

Myself (as a gigging musician)... I approach a major release with extreme caution... I approach dot releases a little more openly. 

 

As for bricked units.... Line 6 has provided a lot of fail safes to work around that. Any of the threads I ever see about a bricked unit is resolved by procedures that can be done at home without the need of sending the unit to a service center. Again... there may be exceptions to this... but not nearly enough to make me afraid to update. 

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2 hours ago, codamedia said:

 

Of course there are exceptions.... If 2.81 does not address a problem you are having with 2.8... or if 2.8 is simply not a problem for you.... then nobody is twisting your arm to update. But the same would apply to a gigging musician wouldn't it? He doesn't HAVE TO update if he doesn't have a problem with the previous version. 

 

Myself (as a gigging musician)... I approach a major release with extreme caution... I approach dot releases a little more openly. 

 

As for bricked units.... Line 6 has provided a lot of fail safes to work around that. Any of the threads I ever see about a bricked unit is resolved by procedures that can be done at home without the need of sending the unit to a service center. Again... there may be exceptions to this... but not nearly enough to make me afraid to update. 

 

Glad to hear the bricks can be fixed without sending the units in for repair.  I think sometimes the treads end (or start) when the unit is frozen and not responding to roll backs or additional attempts to update again.  Thanks!

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Yeah, the reports of units truly being bricked from updates are greatly exaggerated. Over the years since the Helix has been out, I can probably count on one hand the number of units that were truly bricked after an update. The vast majority of time, things can be recovered one way or another. A lot of times people run into an issue they post here in a panic. They don't always follow up saying things were resolved.

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As a fellow hobbyist, aren't we the ones who have the least to risk of all? 

 

And as for that "risk," I really don't think it's very much risk. I updated to 2.71, 2.8, and 2.81 day one, without hesitation (well, I had to wait for work to end, sadly). 

 

If you live in the US, Line 6's customer service is practically bullet proof at this point. If tomorrow my Stomp becomes sentient and tries to kill me, I really have zero fear that Line 6 will send a swat team over to take it out and then replace it with a new one. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, phil_m said:

Yeah, the reports of units truly being bricked from updates are greatly exaggerated. Over the years since the Helix has been out, I can probably count on one hand the number of units that were truly bricked after an update. The vast majority of time, things can be recovered one way or another. A lot of times people run into an issue they post here in a panic. They don't always follow up saying things were resolved.

 

If you could say, I would be interested to know what the general cause is of a truly bricked device?

 

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1 hour ago, phil_m said:

Yeah, the reports of units truly being bricked from updates are greatly exaggerated. Over the years since the Helix has been out, I can probably count on one hand the number of units that were truly bricked after an update. The vast majority of time, things can be recovered one way or another. A lot of times people run into an issue they post here in a panic. They don't always follow up saying things were resolved.

 

sorry, I truly had no idea 

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20 minutes ago, duncann said:

 

If you could say, I would be interested to know what the general cause is of a truly bricked device?

 

 

A room temperature IQ...;)

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20 minutes ago, duncann said:

 

If you could say, I would be interested to know what the general cause is of a truly bricked device?

 

 

I couldn't say... I'm sure there's always a chance of pure coincidence in that a person had a fault and it just happened to reveal itself after a firmware update. I would imagine that it's possible that different firmware taxes the hardware in different ways, so it just exposes something that wasn't showing up before.

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57 minutes ago, Kilrahi said:

If tomorrow my Stomp becomes sentient and tries to kill me, I really have zero fear that Line 6 will send a swat team over to take it out and then replace it with a new one. 

 

 

 

"What are you doing to my firmware, Dave?" ;)

 

 

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24 minutes ago, cruisinon2 said:

 

"What are you doing to my firmware, Dave?" ;)

 

 

 

Dave ain’t here, man!

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As a gigging musician working at least once if not twice a week, I see no need to rush into any update Helix or otherwise with any of my gear.  If everything is working fine and there's no specific feature that would make a huge difference in my performance it can wait as far as I'm concerned.

For example, I have a QSC TM30 mixer.  An upgrade came out about 2 months ago with the most important feature being that it allows you to combine multiple faders under a single fader, and another feature that would allow me to use it as a control surface for my recording studio.  In my mind those are feature I could see some great uses for, but I still haven't upgraded.  What you have to remember when you're a gigging musician it's not just the stability of the update, but the process of incorporating the features into your performances.  I have no doubt the upgrade would go flawlessly, but I also need to have the off time during the week to play around with that feature to discover the best way to use it for my purposes.  That's a lot of planning and some hours investigating, which I don't really have right now with my other responsibilities.

The same thing applies to the Helix.  Although I have some interest in a few of the models and effects, there's nothing that jumps out at me other than getting aligned with the Helix core architecture which I see as a significant benefit over the long term.  Those few models and effects might be beneficial in some of the music I play, but again that requires experimentation with them, so that's more hours during the week I don't have.

I have two Helix floor units, one for the studio and one for live performances.  I had a strategy that I might upgrade one and test it out and possibly use it for in a performance before upgrading the other unit to make sure it was rock solid.  I upgraded the unit from 2.70 (notice I didn't see any benefit in upgrading to 2.71 because the fixes there didn't affect me), at the beginning of the week.  Once I got a feel for it and verified it seemed to be stable, I went to swap it out with my other unit and ran into the obvious reality that an HXEdit 2.70 won't work with a unit using FW 2.81 because the Helix device driver is incompatible and fails to start.  Because I store my presets on the hard drive and import them into setlists as needed, I'll need to rethink my planning of how to do that swap.  At that point it's already mid-week and I can't spend any more time on it as I needed to get things ready for this week's performances.  So in essence I'll still be doing live performances on 2.71 until I decide how to prepare my live rig from my studio setup.  Not a big problem, but one I need to think through and plan so I can get it done quickly with no hitches.

The reason I point this all out is that life using any kind of gear operationally comes with a much broader range of considerations and requires a lot more planning than just willy-dilly jumping into an upgrade.  I'll get there, but it takes some thought, consideration, and planning.  That's why I've never had any problems with my upgrades...it's called "planning", and comes as a result of 3 decades of launching new software into Fortune 500 accounts with thousands of end users conducting business critical operations and where failure is not an option.  But it's good discipline for anyone that wants to keep things stable.

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Working guys take things slowly and deliberately.  1000's of paying guests plus dozens of talent/crew shouldn't be Guinea Pigs.  

 

Hobbyists can experience unexpected changes without much actual damage to the proceedings.  

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2 hours ago, cruisinon2 said:

 

"What are you doing to my firmware, Dave?" ;)

 

 

"This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it."

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well, at this point in time I suppose I would qualify as a hobbyist (only time I play out is Sundays at the church), and thus far I have not bothered doing the 2.81 update (I have updated to 2.8, and the stuff they added there is killer).  The reason simply put is that I have not run into any of the issues that they had to fix with 2.81, so see no real reason to bother with updating further.  

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