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Bradsuth

Best speakers for Helix at home

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I can only get a great sound from my Helix LT when using studio headphones. It is not the patches as I have downloaded patches and used the factory presets, but no matter what sound output I select the sound is never as good as my headphones. To date I have tried:

Guitar amps:Marshall DSL20 and Blackstar HT5, using various cabinets and going through both the power amp as well as bypassing it. This gave a booming, flat sound.

Monitors: KRK RP3: This came closest as it was warm but very contained.

An Alto powered speaker: This was very poor. It sounded exactly like it is, a PA speaker.

Creative Labs active speakers for use with a computer: These gave a great sound but the sound was breaking up.

 

I am now considering whether to try a Headrush FRFR, Yamaha HS8 monitors or just more powerful active speakers even though they do not provide a flat response.

 

Is anybody else having these problems and found a solution?

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39 minutes ago, Bradsuth said:

To date I have tried:

Guitar amps:Marshall DSL20 and Blackstar HT5, using various cabinets and going through both the power amp as well as bypassing it. This gave a booming, flat sound.

 

Not sure exactly what you did here, but if you had bypassed the power amp, you'd have gotten no sound at all... something has to drive the speaker(s). But regardless, when running into a traditional guitar amp,  you don't want to use any cab blocks in the Helix signal chain... it's redundant. There's no need for guitar cabinet emulation when you're monitoring through an actual cabinet or combo... turn the cab blocks off in Helix, and that low end mud will go away.

 

As for the rest... every time you switch to a different kind of output, headphones, studio monitors, large FRFR speakers, or a guitar amp, you're gonna have EQing to do. They are all different animals, designed for different usage scenarios. You'll never get the same patch to sound identical through all of them... and depending on the tone, sometimes the differences will be subtle, and sometimes it'll be night and day. It's the nature of the beast. Speakers are half your tone, if not more.

 

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If you need to stay at medium volume levels for home use and have the space to set them up, good studio monitors (5” and up) were my solution. Which ones work for you are a matter of personal preference.

They do not feel like a guitar amp, but they can sound like good guitar recordings through a beefy sound system. I don’t know whether there is a great product that can handle both gig volume and medium volume home use, especially if your home room is space limited.

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Thanks for that. I meant pre-amp and not power amp. I will try turning the cabs off on the Helix but I tried this with another multi-effects processor (The Mooer GE300) and it didn't work well.

Thanks again.

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I use a dbx driverack PA (+ Driverack RTA-M) between the Helix and my PA speakers.

It was not cheap, but it works well to get a good FRFR sound with PA speakers / in different rooms.

With the RTA-M and the 8 band autoEQ you can measure the boxes easily.

...too bad the Helix has not intigrated something like that, the global EQ is not very useful for me

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Rockit 5s worked well for me once I realized that you have to crank them. At lower vol levels they get distorted (as does everything else I've tried). I have a small practice room so I feel your pain. Just make sure your output is set to Line.

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On 8/22/2019 at 10:00 AM, Bradsuth said:

I will try turning the cabs off on the Helix but I tried this with another multi-effects processor (The Mooer GE300) and it didn't work well.

 

Well... it all depends on how you monitor. 

  • This will not work well if you are listening through headphones, studio monitors, PA cabinet, etc... etc....
  • This WILL work well if you are listening through the power amp input on a guitar amp or any power amp into a standard guitar cabinet.

The above scenario's are not equal, and need to be approached differently.  

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On 8/22/2019 at 10:37 AM, Bradsuth said:

I can only get a great sound from my Helix LT when using studio headphones. It is not the patches as I have downloaded patches and used the factory presets, but no matter what sound output I select the sound is never as good as my headphones. To date I have tried:

Guitar amps:Marshall DSL20 and Blackstar HT5, using various cabinets and going through both the power amp as well as bypassing it. This gave a booming, flat sound.

Monitors: KRK RP3: This came closest as it was warm but very contained.

An Alto powered speaker: This was very poor. It sounded exactly like it is, a PA speaker.

Creative Labs active speakers for use with a computer: These gave a great sound but the sound was breaking up.

 

I am now considering whether to try a Headrush FRFR, Yamaha HS8 monitors or just more powerful active speakers even though they do not provide a flat response.

 

Is anybody else having these problems and found a solution?

i had a couple of amps and I tried a couple of frfr and I finally swich to a seymore duncan 170 with a blackstar 212 cab that I already had.Imo I lik the way the 212 sounds with the helix cabs,yeah I know people will say you are coloring the helix cabs by doing that but I go by sound not by what could be and so far it works.I alos have to option to turn off the helix cabs and just uset the sound coming out of my 212,that works for some amps.I recently also bought a headrush 112 and so far that is working out well.You kind of have to research online if you can set up your rig in a musci store that is better Im sure whne you are ready to buy a good music store will let you set up your helix with what ever you are looking for narrow it down and go try them.I even get a great play back sound from this little speaker.

 

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5 minutes ago, cgar18 said:

i had a couple of amps and I tried a couple of frfr and I finally swich to a seymore duncan 170 with a blackstar 212 cab that I already had.Imo I lik the way the 212 sounds with the helix cabs,yeah I know people will say you are coloring the helix cabs by doing that but I go by sound not by what could be and so far it works.I alos have to option to turn off the helix cabs and just uset the sound coming out of my 212,that works for some amps.I recently also bought a headrush 112 and so far that is working out well.You kind of have to research online if you can set up your rig in a musci store that is better Im sure whne you are ready to buy a good music store will let you set up your helix with what ever you are looking for narrow it down and go try them.I even get a great play back sound from this little speaker.

 

 

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Thanks to everybody that responded. I found a solution. I moved the Helix and the KRK monitors to a smaller room and found the sound was enormously improved. The previous room was not just larger but had a glass roof and French window doors, so the acoustics were very different and probably required more powerful monitors such as HS8s.

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Another thing that might help improve the sound is doing a room eq on your speaker solution. I have a pair of EV-ZLX12P's that sit in stereo from where I play. Initially, they were way to bass heavy, very boomy. I downloaded the free Room Eq Wizard software and ordered myself a reference microphone with phantom power so I could run it into my helix easily. I then connected my helix to my laptop via USB. The room eq software then used the microphone input over USB via helix. The software will play some sine waves and then show you if you have a flat eq or not. Turns out I was WAY bass heavy. The nice thing about my speakers is they have presets with different eq's I can set, so I was able to flatten out the room/speaker response. I set up presets called Helix and Music, although when I play music through my helix, the helix preset still sounds good. Anyways, now it sounds absolutely amazing!

 

Bradsuth - this might allow you to move back into the other room you were in but it sounds like you had the opposite problem as I did, small speakers in a large room. Cheers.

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