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Using an hx-stomp for vocal harmonies


talonmm
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Could I use an hx-stomp as a dedicated vocal harmonizer?  Dedicated as in not using it to modify my guitar.

 

I was thinking of plugging a mic into the hx stomp (I realize I would need to convert the xlr cable coming from the mic to 1/4") and creating a simple patch to make a perfect fifth interval.  Then I would send it to my mixing board.  Not knowing as much music theory as I should, would the perfect fifth ever create a harmony note that would clash with the proper key?

 

Any thoughts if this would accomplish my goal and actually sound good?

 

Thanks

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The harmonizers in the Helix are really designed for guitar harmonies, not for the human voice.  Maybe you could get it to function but I seriously doubt it would make for a believable human voice and it would also mean it would have to be dedicated to that purpose since you can't separate the vocal from the guitar input.  I think this is the equivalent of trying to use a bicycle tire as a spare tire for your car.

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One may achieve an interesting 'effect' only since the Helix won't duplicate the spoken word.  Might create a harmonic sterile 'tone' with oohs and ahhs at best.  Definitely won't be a quote "vocal harmonizer" though.

 

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2 hours ago, talonmm said:

Not knowing as much music theory as I should, would the perfect fifth ever create a harmony note that would clash with the proper key?

 

Also, there's no real "perfect" 5th.  The 3rd or the 5th or the 7th which are what western ears (non oriental) are used to hearing as harmonies are all based on the key (such as A maj, A min, etc) and can also be affected by the scale (diatonic, pentatonic, relative minor, etc.) being applied.  But generally, as it relates to vocal harmonies, it's the key along with the chord progression that tends to influence which note that's based on the 5th relative to the melody line that will fit best against any given melody line note.  A harmony line that directly follows the movements of the melody line by 3rds and 5ths produces a specific type of harmony you'd likely recognize as those used mostly by groups like Crosby, Stills, and Nash.  More sophisticated harmonies like those in Queen compositions are more choral or orchestral in nature and will tend to have their own note movements that are influenced, but not totally dependent as much on the melody line.  Although there are some pretty sophisticated vocal harmonizers out there these days, they all fall short of what individual singers can do in producing harmonies.  Just to blow your mind a bit.  The 5th is actually a 3rd below when it's placed below the melody line rather than above it.  It's actually fascinating to learn how it all works.

If you want to sing harmonies it's all about training, practice and developing a good ear for it.  The same as it is for guitar or any other instrument.

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Thanks everyone for the input!

 

Yes I would have used a stomp as a dedicated device for harmony.  I had a feeling that the perfect fifth would occasionally or possibly produce the incorrect note.

 

I will try to dial in a vocal harmonizer.  At least they allow a guitar input to try to determine the proper harmony, cased on the chord the guitar is playing.

 

It sounds like the helix is not going to produce something that sounds "voice like."

 

 

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Perfect fifths aren't usually an "incorrect" note. They're only that way when done over the 7th scale degree (in a major key), which isn't that often, and western ears are pretty used to hearing it instead of the flatted 5th even then. As Dunedin notes, it's more about using a "real" harmony that changes intervals vs. a parallel line.

 

And yes, a harmonizer is the right tool for the job. They'll still do only parallel harmonies, but will vary the interval (usually minor 3rd, major 3rd, perfect 4th, depending on the note).

 

Side note: the inverted perfect 5th is a perfect 4th below, not a third.

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I find that the Helix isn't good for non-guitar harmonies, especially "intelligent" harmonies (you enter the key of the song and get a properly pitched harmony at any interval(s) you require). Get a TC Helicon product, even if its an old used one. Those do a great job with vocal harmonies. I've used one on sax for years and it works great.

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38 minutes ago, talonmm said:

It sounds like the helix is not going to produce something that sounds "voice like."

 

These things do - and this guy uses it with a HX Stomp.

 

 

Or this one, which is a little less money -

 

 

 

 

Hope this helps/makes sense.

Edited by datacommando
added vid
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