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How to get the same results in a low volume?

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Guitar>Hx stomp>Focusrite>studio monitors

 

The tones is great at higher volumes but my ears get tired and I will like to get the same tone at lower volumes when practicing guitar. It seems that there’s some brightness gone when lowering the master volume on the Unit and on the interface. No changes on the amp models. 
this happens more specially on the clean channels. i tried headphones but the sound is harsh and annoying with high gain tones. 
 

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This phenomenon is wired into the human ear. Google the Fletcher-Munson effect. It’s why guitarists should build their tones at stage volume. 

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I have the opposite issue I back off the volume pedal and loose drive ? wish I could figure that out 

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11 minutes ago, silverhead said:

This phenomenon is wired into the human ear. Google the Fletcher-Munson effect. It’s why guitarists should build their tones at stage volume. 

It could be but when listening to music on YouTube or demos nothing changes. I could hear every detail in a lower volume setting. 

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FACT. Different frequencies are emphasized/attenuated at different volume levels.

 

Once you've all followed silverhead's advice and have the Fletcher-Munson  charts at your fingertips you'll understand how to use specific EQs for specific presets, OR use Global EQ to establish general bedroom level settings.

 

OR you could continue to argue against established science and learn to enjoy your crappy bedroom sound...... or keep it loud and get used to sore ears.....

 

Having said all that, all the EQ in the world won't change the simple fact that LOUDER IS BETTER!  :-)

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33 minutes ago, rd2rk said:

 

FACT. Different frequencies are emphasized/attenuated at different volume levels.

 

Once you've all followed silverhead's advice and have the Fletcher-Munson  charts at your fingertips you'll understand how to use specific EQs for specific presets, OR use Global EQ to establish general bedroom level settings.

 

OR you could continue to argue against established science and learn to enjoy your crappy bedroom sound...... or keep it loud and get used to sore ears.....

 

Having said all that, all the EQ in the world won't change the simple fact that LOUDER IS BETTER!  :-)

Ok thanks ll check on that on guitar playing.

 

but I’m still curious on why doesn’t that happen when listening to music or any type of video on YouTube. You can lower the master volume and you can still hear every detail of whatever you are listening. I don’t know if you understand what I’m saying.

 

oh and btw I don’t have That problem with Native. 

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10 minutes ago, jorgealberto25 said:

Ok thanks ll check on that on guitar playing.

 

but I’m still curious on why doesn’t that happen when listening to music or any type of video on YouTube. You can lower the master volume and you can still hear every detail of whatever you are listening. I don’t know if you understand what I’m saying.

 

oh and btw I don’t have That problem with Native. 

 

It is what it is, and your ears are your ears. If you perceive it that way, then that's the way it is.

 

The world is flat, balanced on the back of an elephant, and the universe revolves around a giant pile of dung.

 

Believe it or not, there's an extensive thread over on TGP arguing that exact theory. It was started by an airline pilot.

I don't know what airline.

I'm not flying anytime soon.

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1 hour ago, rsvette12 said:

I have the opposite issue I back off the volume pedal and loose drive ? wish I could figure that out 

 

Where in the chain is your volume pedal located?  A volume pedal at the beginning of a chain acts much like the volume on your guitar.  When you reduce the volume, you're not hitting the front of the amp at full strength/volume, which results in a cleaner sound.  If the volume pedal is after the amp, then you should still get the full sound, but at a reduced volume when backing off.

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I thought the world was flat, balanced on four elephants that are supported by a turtle - couresty of Terry Pratchett.  He doesn't say what the Turtle stands on,m but the rimfall is supposed to be beautiful...

 

Old Hi Fi amplifiers had a "loudness" button - boosts bass and treble so that low volume sounds more like loud - couresty of Fletcher Munson.

 

Like they say - it's just the way that ears work.  Just one note of caution - loud is good, but too loud too long or too often, at least for me, means tinnitus and inability to hear really high frequencies.  Doesn't matter if it's monitors or headphones for this particular application.

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6 minutes ago, mrkphpps said:

I thought the world was flat, balanced on four elephants that are supported by a turtle - couresty of Terry Pratchett.  He doesn't say what the Turtle stands on,m but the rimfall is supposed to be beautiful...

 


C’mon man! The turtle is standing on another turtle, who’s standing on yet another turtle. It’s just turtles, all the way down.

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I'd forgotten all about the turtles!

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15 hours ago, lungho said:

 

Where in the chain is your volume pedal located?  A volume pedal at the beginning of a chain acts much like the volume on your guitar.  When you reduce the volume, you're not hitting the front of the amp at full strength/volume, which results in a cleaner sound.  If the volume pedal is after the amp, then you should still get the full sound, but at a reduced volume when backing off.

 

Have to look into that - thanks :) 

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On 4/25/2020 at 2:57 PM, rd2rk said:

 

It is what it is, and your ears are your ears. If you perceive it that way, then that's the way it is.

 

The world is flat, balanced on the back of an elephant, and the universe revolves around a giant pile of dung.

 

Believe it or not, there's an extensive thread over on TGP arguing that exact theory. It was started by an airline pilot.

I don't know what airline.

I'm not flying anytime soon.

Dude sorry but you still don’t understand what I’m trying to say. Yes, I understand  that we prefer higher volume by nature lol

I should of have explain it like this, the volume knob on the unit changes the tone, acting like an amp. If I’m playing with single coils that twang tone is gone on a bedroom level setting. 
When you are hearing an SRV song on YouTube, sound system, car etc... if you lower the volume, does the tone of his guitar changes? From bright to dark? No, you can still hear it. Maybe that example doesn’t apply because the way it was recorded. Meaning, on higher volume lol
 

So the real question is? Does the physical volume knob on the helix affects the tone? 

 

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1 hour ago, jorgealberto25 said:

 

So the real question is? Does the physical volume knob on the helix affects the tone? 

 

It shouldn't, no. So there is most likely something else going on. Maybe you are overdriving your monitors with a signal that's too hot; maybe your output block is clipping from the output level being too high; maybe you're hearing doubled output because you're software-monitoring the signal too...? Those are some guesses. As for solutions, you need to go to the basics. Unplug EVERYTHING from your helix except your guitar and the outputs going straight to your monitors. Take everything else out of the signal chain. Now try it. Still hear a problem? Try some of the factory presets too. Still hear the same thing? 

 

Edit: I just noticed you're running the stomp into another interface. I'll put $2.50 on that being the source of your problem. Why not go direct out from the stomp, and also use the USB out from the stomp? You do realize that running through a second interface means A/D conversion happens all over again, and whatever final tone you hear depends on the quality of that interface, yes?

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2 hours ago, jorgealberto25 said:

Dude sorry but you still don’t understand what I’m trying to say. Yes, I understand  that we prefer higher volume by nature lol

I should of have explain it like this, the volume knob on the unit changes the tone, acting like an amp. If I’m playing with single coils that twang tone is gone on a bedroom level setting. 
When you are hearing an SRV song on YouTube, sound system, car etc... if you lower the volume, does the tone of his guitar changes? From bright to dark? No, you can still hear it. Maybe that example doesn’t apply because the way it was recorded. Meaning, on higher volume lol
 

So the real question is? Does the physical volume knob on the helix affects the tone? 

 

 

DUDE! You still don't get it!

 

First, when I said that LOUDER IS BETTER, did you notice the smiley?

 

Second, it DOES NOT MATTER what you perceive when you listen to YouTube, or your car stereo, and I can't explain your perceptions other than to say that recording engineers get paid BIG BUCKS to make sure that every detail of their recordings is clear at any possible listening level, through any possible playback system, and that not all YT Videos are even listenable at ANY level.

 

Also, older stereos had a LOUDNESS button to compensate for the effect of the Fletcher-Munson curve. Modern stereos have that function built in to the Volume settings.

 

When you're using the Helix ITRW (not in a DAW with Native), the only way that the BIG KNOB affects the TONE of your preset is in the way that different volume levels accentuate/attenuate different frequencies AS YOUR EARS PERCEIVE THEM, in accordance with the Fletcher-Munson curve. The BIG KNOB controls volume in the digital realm, prior to the DAC Converter. There is technically a possible tone difference which has to do with the way the bits are handled in the DAC, but it's GENERALLY agreed that it's too tiny to be perceived by normal human ears.

 

You can drive yourself crazy trying to figure out why this sounds different than that, but it doesn't matter, physics is physics, science is science (despite what the politicians say), and playing the guitar live in a room is always going to sound different than a recording of the same performance.

 

As Frank Zappa said, "Shut up and play yer guitar!" :-) 

 

NOTE: Capitalization and bolding is done for EMPHASIS. Only the first word of this reply was YELLING. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, rd2rk said:

 

DUDE! You still don't get it!

 

First, when I said that LOUDER IS BETTER, did you notice the smiley?

 

Second, it DOES NOT MATTER what you perceive when you listen to YouTube, or your car stereo, and I can't explain your perceptions other than to say that recording engineers get paid BIG BUCKS to make sure that every detail of their recordings is clear at any possible listening level, through any possible playback system, and that not all YT Videos are even listenable at ANY level.

 

Also, older stereos had a LOUDNESS button to compensate for the effect of the Fletcher-Munson curve. Modern stereos have that function built in to the Volume settings.

 

When you're using the Helix ITRW (not in a DAW with Native), the only way that the BIG KNOB affects the TONE of your preset is in the way that different volume levels accentuate/attenuate different frequencies AS YOUR EARS PERCEIVE THEM, in accordance with the Fletcher-Munson curve. The BIG KNOB controls volume in the digital realm, prior to the DAC Converter. There is technically a possible tone difference which has to do with the way the bits are handled in the DAC, but it's GENERALLY agreed that it's too tiny to be perceived by normal human ears.

 

You can drive yourself crazy trying to figure out why this sounds different than that, but it doesn't matter, physics is physics, science is science (despite what the politicians say), and playing the guitar live in a room is always going to sound different than a recording of the same performance.

 

As Frank Zappa said, "Shut up and play yer guitar!" :-) 

 

NOTE: Capitalization and bolding is done for EMPHASIS. Only the first word of this reply was YELLING. 

 

 

Ok ok ok I’m starting to understand this volume thing like 70 percent lol

I’m using the simple EQ pedal ( seen on a YouTube tutorial) makes things a little easier , makes the recordings sound ok at any volume level and practicing at lower volumes.

Its cool to learn new things everyday :) 


The reason why I didn’t understand what was going on with helix is because when I make hip hop beats, I don’t have this problem. The recording comes out perfectly at any volume level, in any playback system. 

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Everything that rd2rk said is correct, and could very well be what you're hearing. BUT, since you are running it into a second interface and adjusting the level into that interface, then you might genuinely be hearing a freq response that varies. Read my reply and do what I suggested above ^^^^^ to rule it out.

 

Since you said you don't hear this same difference when using Native, that makes even more suspicious of the input on your Focusrite interface... If you really are hearing something that isn't Fletcher-Munson, then it's something with the audio inputs side of your signal chain, because youtube playback or playback from your DAW does not use the input routing of the Focusrite box.

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1 hour ago, jorgealberto25 said:

 because when I make hip hop beats, I don’t have this problem.

 

I'm gonna go out on a limb here, because I don't have the knowledge or ear many above do, but I would guess that is because those beats are all pre-packaged sounds meant to sound good at any level, and along the lines of what rd2rk posted above: "recording engineers get paid BIG BUCKS to make sure that every detail of their recordings is clear at any possible listening level, through any possible playback system". 

 

My Alesis drum set sounds the same at any level. Because it was made that way and would get trashed in reviews if it wasn't.  But playing a guitar has a crap-ton of dynamics possible before it ever comes out the 1/4" jack to start with.  e.g.: your guitar playing isn't pre-packaged so one size does not fit all.

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1 hour ago, jorgealberto25 said:

The reason why I didn’t understand what was going on with helix is because when I make hip hop beats, I don’t have this problem. The recording comes out perfectly at any volume level, in any playback system. 

 

I'm old, and I can't stand hip hop/rap music, so I'm not even really sure what all is involved in the making of "hip hop beats".

If it's what I think it is, try this.

Run your beats through a frequency analyzer. Your DAW probably has one, if not, they're available as free plugins, just do a search

Observe the wave forms.

Now run recorded music through the analyzer.

Finally, pick up your guitar and hit a few big chords.

 

The differences, and the relationship to the Fletcher-Munson curve, should be readily apparent.

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Ummm... hello... guys? Am I just silent here, or what? Yes, Fletcher-Munson effects are very, very real. but he said he did not hear this same reduction in treble freqs when using Native. I know it's super fun to the be one to solve the problem, but you're not listening to all of the symptoms as you lecture on and on about Fletcher-Munson. Yes, you may all be right. But you've skipped a critical troubleshooting step based on the info he provided.

 

He's running his Stomp into a secondary interface, and then using that as the USB host to his DAW, as well as the output to his monitors. It's entirely possible his FocusRite box is having some kind of input-level related effect here, which only affects incoming analog signals.

 

One simple way to test this is to get the levels up to where things sound 'right,' and record that into your DAW. Now, play it back from your DAW. Does it still sound good? Great, next step. Lower the volume within your DAW. Play it back again. Does it still sound good? If so, the problem is the analog input chain into the FocusRite. If not, then it's likely Fletcher-Munson perceived differences.

 

You could also do as I suggested way up there, above a zillion posts about F-M, where I suggested unplugging everything from the Stomp except your guitar, plugging it directly into your monitors (take the focusrite out of the chain completely!), and see if you still hear the issue. If not, then it's the focusrite box.

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tune your presets while at gig volume, then when you go to practice at home or whatever, just use the global EQ to tune the overall sound to make it sound good at low volume. Then for gigs just turn off the global EQ and you're back to normal. The filters on the global EQ sound amazing, they sound like Elektron quality like the ones in the Octatrack

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9 hours ago, qwerty42 said:

Ummm... hello... guys? Am I just silent here, or what? Yes, Fletcher-Munson effects are very, very real. but he said he did not hear this same reduction in treble freqs when using Native. I know it's super fun to the be one to solve the problem, but you're not listening to all of the symptoms as you lecture on and on about Fletcher-Munson. Yes, you may all be right. But you've skipped a critical troubleshooting step based on the info he provided.

 

This!

 

My first take would've been Fletcher Munson, too (for obvious reasons), but once it was mentioned the same wouldn't happen with HXN, that was kinda flawed.

So yes, I would recommend doing just the tests you've suggested.

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16 hours ago, qwerty42 said:

He's running his Stomp into a secondary interface, and then using that as the USB host to his DAW, as well as the output to his monitors. It's entirely possible his FocusRite box is having some kind of input-level related effect here, which only affects incoming analog signals.

thanks I checked everything and its not the focusrite. all levels are fine. im using the interface so it can be easy to do multiple things at the same time.

that simple eq pedal is doing wonders to play in a really lower volume level! :) i dont know why, but i cant play on a let say moderate decent volume level? ( i guess)  my right ear just gets tired and it starts to hurt. and to be honest,  im not playing loud. 

sorry guys one more question, so know that issue is solved, how do i get a recording to sound the same in a volume level with any playback system? do i need to download a software or something? im using reaper?

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35 minutes ago, jorgealberto25 said:

thanks I checked everything and its not the focusrite. all levels are fine. im using the interface so it can be easy to do multiple things at the same time.

that simple eq pedal is doing wonders to play in a really lower volume level! :) i dont know why, but i cant play on a let say moderate decent volume level? ( i guess)  my right ear just gets tired and it starts to hurt. and to be honest,  im not playing loud. 

sorry guys one more question, so know that issue is solved, how do i get a recording to sound the same in a volume level with any playback system? do i need to download a software or something? im using reaper?

 

Put an EQ with the settings you've discovered into a separate track, then instead of sending the tracks you want to monitor direct to the Master out, send them to the track with the EQ and send THAT to the Master Out. Just don't base your mixes on that sound, that still needs to be done with headphones and Monitors at real world levels.

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3 hours ago, jorgealberto25 said:

i dont know why, but i cant play on a let say moderate decent volume level? ( i guess)  my right ear just gets tired and it starts to hurt. and to be honest,  im not playing loud.

 

As a survivor (somehow...) of some exceptionally stupid uncivilized years, which included a solid decade of live performances whilst proudly declaring "If it's too loud, you're too old!", and never wearing any sort of hearing protection, I can assure you of two things with the utmost certainty:

 

1) If you're actually causing physical pain in your ear(s) then yes... you ARE indeed playing loud. Too loud. Period.

 

and

 

2) You are doing irreparable damage to your hearing. The effects are gradual. You won't start to notice it for a while, probably years from now.  That's problem #1. The effects are also cumulative, and that's problem #2. At some point you will start to lose the ability to hear certain frequencies entirely...by then the damage is done, and there is no fix...you won't get them back.

 

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I forget where I got it, but there is a great explanation of the Fletcher Munson(sp?) effect on the google.  This guy goes into the science and it is very interesting.  He had a few eq  blocks that you could put on the end of your chain and it would simulate the sound you get at louder volumes.... Yes, yes, I know, that's impossible, but it was close.

 

Because I can't always set my tones at playing levels, I started using an eq patch like his at the end of my chains with a snapshot having it on or off.  I would set the tone with it on while playing at lower levels.  It is not perfect, but it is a very good start.

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On 5/11/2020 at 11:57 AM, rd2rk said:

 

Put an EQ with the settings you've discovered into a separate track, then instead of sending the tracks you want to monitor direct to the Master out, send them to the track with the EQ and send THAT to the Master Out. Just don't base your mixes on that sound, that still needs to be done with headphones and Monitors at real world levels.

Cool! Thanks dude!

Im looking at the manual and also trying to find out a tutorial online on how to do changes to the tone of a recorded guitar part in real time with the helix software but I  don’t understand. Like what vsts do, for example, if you change anything in the the signal chain, it affects your recorded track.

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17 minutes ago, jorgealberto25 said:

Cool! Thanks dude!

Im looking at the manual and also trying to find out a tutorial online on how to do changes to the tone of a recorded guitar part in real time with the helix software but I  don’t understand. Like what vsts do, for example, if you change anything in the the signal chain, it affects your recorded track.

 

I'm not really sure what you're after here. If you have Native, take a DI (unprocessed) track. Put Native on a third track and point the DI track at the Native track. You can then use the DI track to make as many different sounding Native tracks as you like. Recording Expression pedal MIDI, Preset and snapshot changes, etc will allow you to control the effects in Native just like the original track. For your final mix you can pick and choose, combine, add further processing, whatever, without changing your original recorded track or your DI track.

 

EDIT: unless you're using a MAC and specific DAW (see the latest Native manual), preset changes don't work, but everything else MIDI does.

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