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Clipping Indicator


ichasedx
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33 minutes ago, ichasedx said:

Using a Helix floor and PC+...are there any indicators available on the Helix that show then clipping is occurring? Something that mimics the LED on top of the PC+?

Thanks,

Mike

 

 

Page 44 of the manual;

 

71-C2-EB78-F61-D-40-A6-81-C8-437-A8-D8-F

 

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8 minutes ago, rd2rk said:

 

The clipping indicator on Helix does NOT reflect when the Input on the Powercab is clipping.

The Powercab Input will clip WAY before the Helix does.

 

Agree, and it can depend onsettings in the PowerCab, such as the DB settings for speaker models.

 

Finding a way of monitoring this without sitting on top of the PC+ was somethign I played with this weekend. In the end I took the analog send from the PC+ and calibrated the meters on my desk so I know when they hit the red so is the PC+. Took a bit of time to adjust the input trim to and understand the bits that impacted but should be worth it.

 

As an observation, the XLR outputs direct from the Helix are a lot hotter than the L6 link to PC+ to XLR route even when the PC+ is peaking. I found myself bumping the speaker models from -15db to -8 db, and adjusting the desk trim from 0db to +8db.

 

I'm pretty sure the FRFR setting was considerably hotter (but can't recall right now).

 

Other peoples observations welcome.

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On 2/28/2021 at 4:48 PM, waymda said:

Agree, and it can depend onsettings in the PowerCab, such as the DB settings for speaker models.

 

 

 

 

Edited by rd2rk
I was wrong
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6 hours ago, rd2rk said:

 

It does not. The PC Input Clipping Indicator is TOTALLY dependent on the Helix Output Level.

The db settings within the PC ONLY affect the PC Output Level.

 

 

 

 

I've just retested it changing the setting for Speaker Level [1] for the PC+ using HX Edit and can easily push the light into the red by removing the amount of defeat for just that setting. No other changes.

 

Boosting the Flat level of FRFR also changes the LED behaviour independent of any other settings

 

Do those settings change the Helix Output level or the within Cab processing? 

 

 

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9 hours ago, rd2rk said:

 

The clipping indicator on Helix does NOT reflect when the Input on the Powercab is clipping.

 

 

?? Thought the guy was asking if there is a clip indicator on the helix, and I replied. Didnt get he's asking for a powercab clip indicator on the helix, this would indeed make no sense.

 

Quote

The Powercab Input will clip WAY before the Helix does.

 

Not sure what you mean here. Powercab is active, so it does clip when input level is too high (it could be after, or before), doesn't matter if gain staging on the source is good or bad. This means it won't clip at all, even if the Helix is stuck on reds, until you raise the PC volume at a level that it will clip its own signal. 

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Thanks for the responses, here is the reason for my question. I have the PC 15 feet or so away from the Helix, which is mounted on a stand, (for easier access to the controls, I have back issues and trying to bend over to make adjustments is out of the question). I setup the Helix with the volume knob at full as outlined as one of several ways to do this. I have my presets adjusted as outlined in the manual, where the LED on The PC is in the yellow. My problem; if I experiment with any changes to the preset, eg. scrolling thru the various amp models, there is no way to see the clipping indicator on the PC without having to continually walk back and forth while I make adjustments, Especially using the handy tilt back legs on the PC. Even with the addition of any effect added in the chain will have a effect on the input signal to the PC. Having so many different effects available to choose from is not that convenient  if after every selection I have to adjust the settings to make sure I haven't increased the Helix output too much, which happens all the time. I hope my explanation is clear. Thanks again for your input.

 

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On 3/1/2021 at 12:41 AM, PierM said:

Not sure what you mean here. Powercab is active, so it does clip when input level is too high (it could be after, or before), doesn't matter if gain staging on the source is good or bad. This means it won't clip at all, even if the Helix is stuck on reds, until you raise the PC volume at a level that it will clip its own signal. 

 

As simple as I can make it. The OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX does NOT need to be RED for the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB to be RED. BUT, if the OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX is RED, there's NO WAY you won't clip the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB. Just because the OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX is NOT RED, that doesn't mean that you won't clip the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB.

 

Lastly, the volume knob on the POWERCAB does NOT affect the input level, it ONLY affects the POWERCAB OUTPUT. 

 

 

On 3/1/2021 at 7:48 AM, ichasedx said:

Thanks for the responses, here is the reason for my question. I have the PC 15 feet or so away from the Helix, which is mounted on a stand, (for easier access to the controls, I have back issues and trying to bend over to make adjustments is out of the question). I setup the Helix with the volume knob at full as outlined as one of several ways to do this. I have my presets adjusted as outlined in the manual, where the LED on The PC is in the yellow. My problem; if I experiment with any changes to the preset, eg. scrolling thru the various amp models, there is no way to see the clipping indicator on the PC without having to continually walk back and forth while I make adjustments, Especially using the handy tilt back legs on the PC. Even with the addition of any effect added in the chain will have a effect on the input signal to the PC. Having so many different effects available to choose from is not that convenient  if after every selection I have to adjust the settings to make sure I haven't increased the Helix output too much, which happens all the time. I hope my explanation is clear. Thanks again for your input.

 

 

THERE IS NO INDICATOR on the HELIX or in HX EDIT or POWERCAB EDIT that will indicate that the POWERCAB INPUT is clipping.

I agree that there should be, for exactly the reasons you're asking. Having to run back and forth is REALLY ANNOYING!

Do a search on Ideascale. there's a request for a POWERCAB input clip indicator on the Helix, VOTE FOR IT! But the only way it could work is if you're using the AES/EBU cable.

 

I'm sorry for all the caps, I'm not YELLING, I'm trying to emphasize WHICH LEVELS and WHICH DEVICE I'm speaking of.

Edited by rd2rk
I was wrong
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On 3/1/2021 at 6:05 PM, waymda said:

I've just retested it changing the setting for Speaker Level [1] for the PC+ using HX Edit and can easily push the light into the red by removing the amount of defeat for just that setting. No other changes.

 

Boosting the Flat level of FRFR also changes the LED behaviour independent of any other settings

 

Do those settings change the Helix Output level or the within Cab processing? 

 

 

 

So its changing the Helix output? As far as I can tell this is a parameter within the PC+ that the Helix is controlling.

 

I'm not asking to be difficult. I'd genuinely like to know as understanding this architecture is important to me as it hepls me calibrate my set-up and improve my workflow.

 

Relevant pics below.

 

image.thumb.png.78e2c1e7cc3ccd9459acfb8f537d6782.png

 

image.thumb.png.f21d11b17769012b31d3d91b03948414.png

 

 

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23 hours ago, ichasedx said:

Thanks for the responses, here is the reason for my question. I have the PC 15 feet or so away from the Helix, which is mounted on a stand, (for easier access to the controls, I have back issues and trying to bend over to make adjustments is out of the question). I setup the Helix with the volume knob at full as outlined as one of several ways to do this. I have my presets adjusted as outlined in the manual, where the LED on The PC is in the yellow. My problem; if I experiment with any changes to the preset, eg. scrolling thru the various amp models, there is no way to see the clipping indicator on the PC without having to continually walk back and forth while I make adjustments, Especially using the handy tilt back legs on the PC. Even with the addition of any effect added in the chain will have a effect on the input signal to the PC. Having so many different effects available to choose from is not that convenient  if after every selection I have to adjust the settings to make sure I haven't increased the Helix output too much, which happens all the time. I hope my explanation is clear. Thanks again for your input.

 

 in reference to clipping I cant help you yet as im just learning too. But I do share your struggle with back pain. Have you used pedal edit mode yet? We dont have to bend over to twiddle knobs anymore. It's truly one of my favorite features. Page 14 of the manual. put the helix back on the floor where it belongs and use your feet. The other option is to have your computer near you on a stand and use HX edit.

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5 hours ago, waymda said:

So its changing the Helix output?

 

NO! Quoting from my previous post:

 

22 hours ago, rd2rk said:

As simple as I can make it. The OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX does NOT need to be RED for the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB to be RED. BUT, if the OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX is RED, there's NO WAY you won't clip the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB. If the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB is RED, the ONLY way to get it back in the yellow/green area is to LOWER the OUTPUT level on the HELIX. Whether you do that by changes to the gain staging or by simply lowering the level in the OUTPUT Block doesn't matter. BUT, again, just because the OUTPUT clip indicator on the HELIX is NOT RED, that doesn't mean that you won't clip the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB. One way or another, if the INPUT clip indicator on the POWERCAB is RED, you have to lower the OUTPUT LEVEL on the HELIX.

 

Lastly, the volume knob on the POWERCAB does NOT affect the input level, it ONLY affects the POWERCAB OUTPUT. Likewise, if the POWERCAB input light indicates clipping, NONE of the level setting WITHIN POWERCAB will affect it.

 

Try it. Raise the HELIX OUTPUT level until the POWERCAB input light indicates clipping (RED). Turn the POWERCAB VOLUME knob all the way down, so no sound is coming from the POWERCAB. Now go into POWERCAB EDIT and turn off ALL the levels, including the level on the SYSTEM Tab. The POWERCAB INPUT clipping indicator will remain RED, UNTIL you turn down the OUTPUT level on the HELIX.

 

The ONLY thing that determines if the POWERCAB INPUT is clipping is the HELIX OUTPUT LEVEL.

NOTHING in the PC+ settings affects the Helix Output!

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Seriously stop shouting - I can read and I understand completely what you're saying.

 

It doesn't align with the testing I've done. Your caps don't add any clarity.

 

It may not change the helix output - but it changes the behaviour of the clip indicator LED, and you completely shat on the suggestion that it had anything to do with changes to the powercab settings.

 

 

On 3/1/2021 at 11:02 AM, rd2rk said:

It does not. The PC Input Clipping Indicator is TOTALLY dependent on the Helix Output Level.

The db settings within the PC ONLY affect the PC Output Level.

 

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I re-read your post. You are correct, and I apologize to all and sundry for my error.

I was doing my tests using Powercab Edit. I tested repeatedly, with the stated results.

Apparently, Powercab Edit is not working properly on my computer.

When I tested using the settings from HX Edit, it worked as you say.

 

I strive for perfection, but....not the first time I've been tricked by a robot, probably won't be the last!

 

I've edited my previous posts and added my mea culpa.

 

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Thanks rd2rk - much apreciated.

 

I'd love to get an explanation of what's happening as it is a bit counter intuitive from my perspective - but I suspect that's a L6 engineering question.

 

That said I am preferring reducing the defeat on the speaker models and leaving the digital output block at zero db ensuring over pushing the gain at the output block.

 

Setting the models to -8 db (rather than -15) is providing sufficient signal (according to the indicator), balanced volume across presets, stopping 'popping' when swapping between speaker models and FRFR in a patch, and providing reasonable gain into my desk from the line out. 

 

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On 2/28/2021 at 5:24 PM, ichasedx said:

Using a Helix floor and PC+...are there any indicators available on the Helix that show then clipping is occurring? Something that mimics the LED on top of the PC+?

Thanks,

Mike

 

 

On 2/28/2021 at 6:48 PM, waymda said:

 

...

 

Finding a way of monitoring this without sitting on top of the PC+ was somethign I played with this weekend. In the end I took the analog send from the PC+ and calibrated the meters on my desk so I know when they hit the red so is the PC+. Took a bit of time to adjust the input trim to and understand the bits that impacted but should be worth it.

 

...

 

I have a couple of amps/cabs with the controls on top, most notably a Vox and Powercab.  While marginally "novel", top mounted controls have always seemed like a poor idea to me on any amp/cab. The only way they are useful is if you are standing directly over the amp and the amp is flat on the floor(perpendicular). The problem being that if you are performing this is probably the worst position for an amp which you want either leaned/kicked back if on the floor or hoisted up on a stand.  Either one of those more ideal positions makes it difficult to view and use top mounted controls.  If you are at home practicing there may be a good chance you are seated and again the top mounted controls and indicators are in a less than ideal viewing position unless you practice with your amp next to and pointing at your knees.  #KeepEmOnTheFront. Rant over.

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11 hours ago, waymda said:

I'd love to get an explanation of what's happening as it is a bit counter intuitive from my perspective - but I suspect that's a L6 engineering question.

 

 

Yes. It makes NO sense to me that there would be any other way to affect an INPUT clip indicator other than the OUTPUT level of the device that's feeding it. The SPEAKER level and IR level in the Powercab are OUTPUT levels within the Powercab. Makes no sense at all, and I think it's a bug. But, as you say, that's a L6 engineering problem, and

they're not talking about the Powercab AT ALL - not here, not over on TGP - no feedback from L6 at all where Powercab is concerned. Scary.

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, rd2rk said:

 

Yes. It makes NO sense to me that there would be any other way to affect an INPUT clip indicator other than the OUTPUT level of the device that's feeding it. The SPEAKER level and IR level in the Powercab are OUTPUT levels within the Powercab. Makes no sense at all, and I think it's a bug. But, as you say, that's a L6 engineering problem, and

they're not talking about the Powercab AT ALL - not here, not over on TGP - no feedback from L6 at all where Powercab is concerned. Scary.

 

 

 

 

I agree, it has always seemed like a grave omission to not include an input trim control on the Powercab, particularly on the Powercab+. As has been stated here though I suspect that this is a deliberate design choice to mandate that whatever the optimal signal is for the PC+ be provided by whatever source is feeding the PC+. Simplifies things theoretically but actually complicates them in the real world.

 

The L6 Link adds and simplifies remote control of the PC+. Using the L6 Link connection is the preferred and most powerful way to use a Powercab+ when you own an HX device. L6''s no input trim design decision then proceeds to precipitate a whole lot of unnecessary and major hassle adjusting output levels on multiple presets on HX devices.  Even if you are using equipment without an L6 Link connection you still have to adjust your source signal to get the right level arriving at the Powercab+.

 

An input trim knob would have made life so much simpler.  Seems like the perfect(optimal source output signal) may have been the enemy of the better(adjust input sensitivity with trim knob on the Powercab+) in this case although there may have been some other reason that drove this decision. 

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Well, there is an Input Trim Control, it's on the System Tab in PC Edit, and in the System settings on the Powercab itself (press and hold the HOME button). It can be controlled via MIDI PC#5, and the settings go from OFF (PC#5 Value 0) to +12db (Value 127) with 113 being 0db - not 100 per the PC Manual.

 

My problem with the implementation is that it's about the only Global PC setting you can't access on Helix itself from the GLOBAL Tab on the Powercab dialog.

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2 hours ago, rd2rk said:

Well, there is an Input Trim Control, it's on the System Tab in PC Edit, and in the System settings on the Powercab itself (press and hold the HOME button). It can be controlled via MIDI PC#5, and the settings go from OFF (PC#5 Value 0) to +12db (Value 127) with 113 being 0db - not 100 per the PC Manual.

 

My problem with the implementation is that it's about the only Global PC setting you can't access on Helix itself from the GLOBAL Tab on the Powercab dialog.

 

If you are referring to the "Input 1/2 Gain" controls they may modify the input sensitivity with an XLR connection but they don't impact the PC+ input level/clip indicator light at all with an L6 Link connection. At least as far as I can tell. Is there some other input level/trim control setting I am unaware of?  Maybe I am misremembering but isn't this why, for example, Jason Sadites has that video on Powercab gain staging which has you boosting your signal at the Output block on the Helix or some other block rather than just turning up an input level on the Powcab?  Either way I would still love to have a simple level/trim knob to get my signal peaking in yellow with perhaps an infrequent red.

 

Btw, I agree that including those level controls on the Powercab tab in HX Edit would be most useful; but only useful for L6 Link connections if they applied to a Powercab input level control that worked with L6 Link.

 

Edit: Just watched a bit of Jason's video again and he mentioned the primary reason he doesn't like using the "Input 1/2 Gain" for increasing levels is that they also increase the S/N ratio.  But... he also mentions in passing that at least for that part of his testing he was using an XLR or 1/4"  connection although later on in the video his HX Edit screen is showing the Powercab tab and he is making changes on it. He also describes his connection for the duration of the video as being via L6 Link.  So I am still left wondering if there is a control on the Powercab+ for changing its input level when using the L6 Link such that it affects the level/clip indicator?

 

 

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HF Trim - Page 18 of the PC Manual, third item down. It controls the Output Level of the HF Driver.

In PC Edit you'll find it on the SYSTEM Tab, right below the Input 1/2 Gain controls.

It doesn't SEEM to affect the Clip light (doesn't add enough gain?), which is part of the reason I wonder why the FRFR and Speaker levels DO affect the Clip light.

I think it's a bug, and the PC's internal level settings should NOT affect the clip light.

But, again, it could be an engineering thing, and until somebody technical at L6 checks in, we're all just guessing.

 

As for Jason's video, since the Input 1/2 Gain controls only affect the analog inputs (as far as I can tell), and he says at the beginning that he's using L6 Link, I don't know why he would even mention those. I don't have time to re-watch the whole thing to find that spot, but if he says then that he's using XLR, he's contradicting himself. Maybe he used different methods in different parts of the video? Anyhow, the XLRs are how I bring in a VST, and using a VST or an HXS or anything that doesn't have L6 Link, the Input 1/2 Gain controls are the ONLY way (EDIT: except for the FRFR/Speaker Level) to set the clip indicator (isn't Input Gain what an Input Clip indicator monitors?), so I have no clue what he's talking about.

Edited by rd2rk
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16 hours ago, rd2rk said:

HF Trim - Page 18 of the PC Manual, third item down. It controls the Output Level of the HF Driver.

In PC Edit you'll find it on the SYSTEM Tab, right below the Input 1/2 Gain controls.

It doesn't SEEM to affect the Clip light (doesn't add enough gain?), which is part of the reason I wonder why the FRFR and Speaker levels DO affect the Clip light.

I think it's a bug, and the PC's internal level settings should NOT affect the clip light.

But, again, it could be an engineering thing, and until somebody technical at L6 checks in, we're all just guessing.

 

As for Jason's video, since the Input 1/2 Gain controls only affect the analog inputs (as far as I can tell), and he says at the beginning that he's using L6 Link, I don't know why he would even mention those. I don't have time to re-watch the whole thing to find that spot, but if he says then that he's using XLR, he's contradicting himself. Maybe he used different methods in different parts of the video? Anyhow, the XLRs are how I bring in a VST, and using a VST or an HXS or anything that doesn't have L6 Link, the Input 1/2 Gain controls are the ONLY way (EDIT: except for the FRFR/Speaker Level) to set the clip indicator (isn't Input Gain what an Input Clip indicator monitors?), so I have no clue what he's talking about.

 

Yep, was aware of the HF Trim but as noted that does not control input level, just HF Driver gain.

 

I think what Jason was saying was that when he tested adjusting the "Input 1/2 Gain" levels on the PC+ he was connected by 1/4" and/or XLR, and that it introduced higher S/N levels. That testing was not done during the video. At some point he states that the video was made using L6 Link. So essentially his "Input 1/2 Gain" level adjustment testing was done prior to the video with a different connection type(1/4" or XLR).  He does not actually use "Input 1/2 Gain" for his recommended adjustments to gain stage settings in the video.  Just shows them when he describes his testing prior to the video.

 

So, still an open question on where or if there is an Input adjustment on the PowerCab+ that can change the levels showing in the level/clip indicator when connected via L6 Link?  As far as I know there isn't one. If someone knows better please educate me.

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