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Wondo100

Do Power Cabs Really Sound This Bad?

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I have to be doing something wrong. Just Got two PC+. Fortunately, have not hooked up the other one yet. When does the blanket get removed from the cabinet? I have tried Flat and speaker cabs. It sounds like there is a horse blanket laying over top of the cabinet. Am I not able to control this from the Helix with L6 cable hooked up? Unless something changes, these are going back very soon.

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Have you checked that both of your Powercabs are running the latest firmware? If they’re not running 2.0, the Helix won’t be able to control them over L6 Link.

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I am checking on this now, but even if I could get Helix to control it, I certainly hope I can make it sound better. As it stands now, I do not see how anyone likes these things. 

 

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8 minutes ago, Wondo100 said:

I am checking on this now, but even if I could get Helix to control it, I certainly hope I can make it sound better. As it stands now, I do not see how anyone likes these things. 

 


I like mine... You just have to adjust the Helix preset accordingly for whatever mode the Powercab is in. I prefer Speaker Mode by far, I think, just because that’s kind of the thing that sets it apart. I definitely don’t find it dark as an FRFR cab, though.

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I have had the Headrush FRFR 112 for a quite a while and happened upon a PowerCab 112 plus on Ebay a few weeks ago , in FRFR mode the Headrush seems more open but in Speaker mode with the PC on a small Roland amp stand tilted back the PC sounds amazing to me , not dull at all, that said I use low cuts quite aggressively to try to keep separated from bass, kick drum and as ever YMMV 

 

Start by getting all FW up to date, then start simple, Rev Purple amp block, some EQ to taste and turn Helix up till the PC input light flashes yellow as you dig in, set the PC to speaker mode and try things out hope you enjoy ! 

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37 minutes ago, Wondo100 said:

I have to be doing something wrong. Just Got two PC+. Fortunately, have not hooked up the other one yet. When does the blanket get removed from the cabinet? I have tried Flat and speaker cabs. It sounds like there is a horse blanket laying over top of the cabinet. Am I not able to control this from the Helix with L6 cable hooked up? Unless something changes, these are going back very soon.

 

I suggest that you take this over to the Powercab thread.

 

As phil_m and cheekybeermonk have said, the Powercab is not either dark or muddy sounding. You DO have to turn it up a bit. If you're playing in an apartment at 60db it ain't ever gonna sound good!

 

Also, you DO have it off the floor, right? One thing I hate about my Powercab is the tilt back feature. It aims it right at your head - IF you're 8 feet tall!

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You're not also using a cab sim in the Helix, right? You need to be using an amp model only, not Amp + Cab (nor IR).

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Nope. No cab sims in Helix. No IRS in Helix. I turn the volume of the Pc all the way down then start playing my guitar and then turn up the big volume knob on Helix to start getting the PC  to go from green to orange and not red. If the big knob starts to go beyond like 1-3 o’clock, I then go into the volume of the speaker in the speaker setting in the PC and bring that up to stay within that green orange range. That usually ends up being around -8db for most speakers vs the -12db as the default for most. Then I bring up the volume on the PC to begin hearing the sound. I have been able to get some okay sounds, mostly heavy overdriven sounds that sound good. I need to work on the cleaner tones to see what I can do. I find that most of the speakers in PC are so so. Some of the stock IRS are good. I have some IRS that work, but unfortunately my OH and Celestion and SR3 do not work because they are not in the right format unless I am missing something. 

 

I did post something in the Power Cab area, but most people come here. 

 

Any other tricks, I could try to start dialing in some better tones? 

I am not sure how I save the settings. I save the preset in Helix, not sure if that carries over to the PC. Not sure If I have to name the preset and save the settings in the cab as well as in Helix. Not sure where to find IRS that are just for the PC. I thought my IRS would work in the Power Cab. Only ones that work are ones that are wav files. I must be doing something wrong because I spend some money on IRS hoping they would carry over to PC. 

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A)  Yes, you must be doing something wrong.  Mine is Awesome!  B) As pointed out previously, you need to update.  C) You have to re-adjust your previously created presets to sound right with the PC+.  Otherwise the stock cabs are absolutely going to sound very nasal/boxy and uninteresting.   Especially experiment with the high/low cut speaker settings.  That said, I've come to prefer a particular IR pretty much across the board and I like it to be on the PC+ rather than in the Helix chain so that other Helix effects don't have any affect on the cab itself - just like in an analog setup.  I think my 'full-circle" return to the IR is the result of having gotten used to the sound of the new tech.  I don't even care for my old 'real' cabs anymore and I can even make the stock PC+ cabs sound better.  My traditional analog cabs sound nasal and boxy to me now in a 'studio'/bedroom setting but that certainly could totally change however if playing live in a mix.  If you want proof that the new tech can be made to sound the same (in a 'solo room' environment) - or better , create a preset where you are using (correctly) the PC+ on one channel - and 4 CM to what you 'thought' you liked in a traditional amp/cab setup and compare (this is actually an excellent method to duplicate your various analog amp/cab tones - however, if you're using Helix "Edit" and a computer to do this you probably will have to take steps to overcome ground-loop noise issues that almost always occur when running an analog poweramp  to a 'computer' via the Helix USB connection - but that's not the PC+'s fault).  I personally don't know how Helix/PC+ holds up for a Djent/Heavy Metal type style of play.  But for everything else,  I can get a better sound, dynamics, and string attack sensitivity on the Helix/PC+ every time.   D)  I highly recommend you watch the following video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6XKaYoNGDg  and change your Helix Globals so that you are running unity gain  (big volume knob on Helix no longer has any effect on volume going to PC+) when re-adjusting your presets. 

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I love mine straight out of the box in Flat mode with my Helix floor.  My suggestion would be slow down a bit, be patient, and keep it simple. 

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Thanks JLondon. Yes, I had already seen that video prior to getting the cabs so that I knew what to dial in. Still working on getting tones. It is hit and miss. I find it ironic how much tweaking you have to do to get it to sound right, I mean if it is a Vintage 30 speaker simulation, it should sound something like it, but you have to tweak and tweak to get it close. When I A/B the PC with my Grandmeisters through their 2x12 V30s, there is a presence and aliveness that is just instantaneously there. Can I get close with the PC? Yes, close, but after about 20 minutes of tweaking. Jury is still out. I think I will set up the other PC now and see how that does. 

 

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5 minutes ago, Wondo100 said:

When I A/B the PC with my Grandmeisters through their 2x12 V30s, there is a presence and aliveness that is just instantaneously there. Can I get close with the PC? Yes, close, but after about 20 minutes of tweaking. Jury is still out. I think I will set up the other PC now and see how that does. 

 

 Keep in mind that a 212 cab will sound different than a 112 cab, and a pair of 112 cabs will still not sound like a 212.

Add that not all 212 cabs with V30s will sound the same.

A 1:1 match between the Powercab and any other cab is not likely, and add tubes to the mix.....

 

In the end, you either like the sound you get or not. Just don't give up too quickly. The powercabs are meant as a jack-of-all-trades solution. Your GMs just have to sound good with one amp.

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Yeah, I do not plan on giving up yet. These things are pretty cool. Just not sure if it is worth the cash at this point. But, I am still working with them.

 

I am ready to set up the other one in stereo. Things I do not know about this is when I hook up both, can I edit both in the HX Edit software? Or do I need to run the Powercab software for one and then the other to get tones dialed in? I am running L6 Link to both cabs, so hoping I can edit both. Also, not quite sure the best way to run stereo with two PC. With my 7CM I run two separate paths, but thinking maybe with the PC, I can run in stereo the way some of the stock presets in the Helix are set up. In other words a lot of those presets are mixed in the middle instead of pan hard left and right. Also, want to find the best way to run two amps and the Piezo at the same time. 

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20 hours ago, Wondo100 said:

... I have some IRS that work, but unfortunately my OH and Celestion and SR3 do not work because they are not in the right format unless I am missing something. 

 

...

 

I have seen several posts to this effect including one from a fellow who actually repurchased another set of exactly the same IRs at the sample rate required for his PC+.  Although I have not tried it myself yet I wonder if you could convert your favorite incompatible IRs to the proper format using a piece of freeware/shareware such as this free utility from Voxengo. If anyone here has any experience with this tool maybe they can comment on it.  You might want to contribute a few bucks to the author if it works for you.

 

https://www.voxengo.com/product/r8brain/

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As far as I can tell, you can do most everything from the HX Edit Screen, including setting the mic to be applied to the XLR out (to FOH) when you're in Speaker Mode.

L6 Link automatically sets One PC Left and the other Right, you control level to each (or both Linked) from the Output Block's Powercab Tab, and you control the balance from the Output Block. You can also do all of that from the Helix's UI.

 

No need for two paths, and the PC SW is only necessary for loading IRs on the PC and saving PC Presets.

 

You might want to check over on the Powercab thread. I seem to remember that there was some sort of problem with PC112s in stereo, but I don't remember what it was. It may have been fixed in the latest update.

 

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Took 6 attempts to get this particular cab to update. Not sure why, but lets hope for the best (note to self - I never need to do software updates for tube amps).   :-)

 

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26 minutes ago, Wondo100 said:

Took 6 attempts to get this particular cab to update. Not sure why, but lets hope for the best (note to self - I never need to do software updates for tube amps).   :-)

 

 

On the flip side, other than the speaker wearing in nicely with time your tube amp will never get any better than the day you bought it. Also no tubes to replace and no biasing required. Don't get me wrong, I love a great tube amp but each piece of gear has its advantages. Personally I love a good firmware update. I put them squarely in the plus column. With that said Line6 has some room to improve on their update process although I don't remember having any issues with my PC+ upgrade.

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Ok. All hooked up. I do not see a way to edit both cabs from HX Edit. There is only one listed there. 

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On 7/10/2020 at 5:09 PM, Wondo100 said:

Ok. All hooked up. I do not see a way to edit both cabs from HX Edit. There is only one listed there. 

 

Are you running HX Edit and HX FW 2.92? It should look like this:

 

 

Edited by rd2rk

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I do, yes. So 1 edits can 1 and 2 edits cab 2? And 1+2 edits both simultaneously?

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Yes. And I THINK the problem I mentioned earlier had something to do with editing the second cab. Again, check over on the Powercab thread.

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Ok. Checking over at the Powercab thread. Hooked both cabs up. Not everything links together, but I think it might be that one had IRS loaded and the other did not. In any event when both are hooked together via L6 LInk, the power is cut in half unless I am doing something wrong. If that is the case, they are on their way back to Sweetwater. My two Grandmeisters do not have that problem. 

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27 minutes ago, Wondo100 said:

Ok. Checking over at the Powercab thread. Hooked both cabs up. Not everything links together, but I think it might be that one had IRS loaded and the other did not. In any event when both are hooked together via L6 LInk, the power is cut in half unless I am doing something wrong. If that is the case, they are on their way back to Sweetwater. My two Grandmeisters do not have that problem. 


What do you mean the power is cut in half? That the volume drops when they’re a stereo pair compared to when you have the output going to one? This could be expected because of the what the Helix automatically sums to mono with one connected. It should be a 6dB drop in signal per side, although the total volume of the two together should still be louder than one alone. You can compensate for the signal loss by increasing the level of each one in the output block.

 

It seems to me that you’re being a little hasty in sending the back, but it’s your prerogative, I suppose. Sometimes it takes a little patience with this stuff. There’s a lot of variables to work through.

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Found this over there:

 

"Just got one of these today and had the same issue. I've maybe played it 20 min but I started playing around with the deeper settings on the powercab and found that mine was set to a -32db setting on most speaker settings (including the full-range). This increased the output significantly! "

 

Worth looking into.

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2 minutes ago, rd2rk said:

Found this over there:

 

"Just got one of these today and had the same issue. I've maybe played it 20 min but I started playing around with the deeper settings on the powercab and found that mine was set to a -32db setting on most speaker settings (including the full-range). This increased the output significantly! "

 

Worth looking into.


I think all of the Speaker Mode presets were set to -14dB or something on my Powercab out of the box. Although, that’s a moot point when using the PC with the Helix and L6 Link, as you aren’t really using PC presets. All relevant PC settings are stored and recalled in the Helix preset, completely overriding any PC preset settings.

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As soon as I noticed the volume drop, I went in and bumped the cabs up as far as I could I also adjusted levels on the Helix and still low volume of both compared to one. Both together does not have the volume of one by itself. All of the cut through that one was doing is gone. There has to be something wrong with something I am doing or something wrong with one of the cabinets.I am stumped. 

 

I did post this over at the Power Cab thread but have not heard anything yet. Am I getting impatient? No, not really. I am getting tired of having to constantly fight with these things to get them to work properly. 

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