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coachz

Impedance question

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Has Helix addressed the bug where a bypassed effect applies its impedance to the following effects? Thanks guys

 

 

 

Edited by coachz
Not bug

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It wasn’t a bug. It was just the way the feature was designed. But, yes, that behavior was updated so you can choose the way it responds by setting the Auto Impedance setting under Global Settings now. You can choose whether the first active block determines the input impedance or the first block in the chain. I believe it was added in the 3.00 update.

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Ahh if you can set it to the first active block then that would be fantastic now. Definitely was a bug in my opinion.  Thank you for the fantastic info.

 

I found it in the release that is so thanks again

Global Settings > Preferences > Auto Impedance

Helix Floor, Helix Rack/Control, Helix LT,  HX Stomp

 

AutoImpedance.jpg

 

A new Global Settings > Preference parameter determines how the Guitar In's impedance circuit behaves when Input > In-Z is set to "Auto." When set to "First Block" (the default, and how Helix has worked since the beginning), the impedance circuit reflects the impedance of the first block on Path 1A, regardless of whether it's enabled or bypassed. When set to "First Enabled," the impedance circuit reflects the impedance of the first enabled block on Path 1A. Called "Auto Impedance" because "Sorry-this-took-so-long-we-love-you-Tito83" wouldn't fit.

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35 minutes ago, coachz said:

Definitely was a bug in my opinion. 

 

I now it's nit-picking, but you are not getting away with sliding that in  :) 

Not liking how it was initially designed doesn't make it a bug... a bug is when something doesn't behave as "designed"

 

I'm glad you found the setting you were looking for. 

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13 minutes ago, codamedia said:

 

I now it's nit-picking, but you are not getting away with sliding that in  :) 

Not liking how it was initially designed doesn't make it a bug... a bug is when something doesn't behave as "designed"

 

I'm glad you found the setting you were looking for. 

 

Silly human! I'll bet you think that words have "meanings"!

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40 minutes ago, codamedia said:

 

I now it's nit-picking, but you are not getting away with sliding that in  :) 

Not liking how it was initially designed doesn't make it a bug... a bug is when something doesn't behave as "designed"

 

I'm glad you found the setting you were looking for. 

Can you present some proof that this was by design? Surely doesn't make any sense to have an effect when bypassed alter the sound. Is there some logic they have mentioned in the past that lead you to believe this was by design?

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14 minutes ago, coachz said:

Can you present some proof that this was by design? Surely doesn't make any sense to have an effect when bypassed alter the sound. Is there some logic they have mentioned in the past that lead you to believe this was by design?

Boss pedals behave that way as well as most other non true bypass devices.

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1 minute ago, coachz said:

You're comparing apples and oranges

 

No, he's not. L6 was modeling real world pedal board behavior. It was widely criticized in the community as a poor design choice, and that's why it was changed. 

Search for posts here and over on TGP by @Tito83. There's extensive discussions on the topic. He was even credited for the change in the Update notes.

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38 minutes ago, coachz said:

Can you present some proof that this was by design? Surely doesn't make any sense to have an effect when bypassed alter the sound. Is there some logic they have mentioned in the past that lead you to believe this was by design?


It was described in the manual as working the way it did, plus the product manager who actually designed the thing said multiple times, in multiple places that the way it was working was the intended design… So by the very definition, that can’t be a bug. You might not like the design, but that doesn’t make it a bug.

 

In any case, it’s a moot point now because people can choose whichever behavior they like.

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2 minutes ago, phil_m said:


It was described in the manual as working the way it did, plus the product manager who actually designed the thing said multiple times, in multiple places that the way it was working was the intended design… So by the very definition, that can’t be a bug. You might not like the design, but that doesn’t make it a bug.

 

In any case, it’s a moot point now because people can choose whichever behavior they like.

That's what I was wondering. Thank you

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2 hours ago, Schmalle said:

Boss pedals behave that way as well as most other non true bypass devices.

 

That's true - but yes, it's also true that it's a bit like apples and oranges. Simply because Boss pedals introduce a typical 1MOhm impedance, hence pretty much the same as, say, an amp or most other pedals. In other words: In case you slap a Boss pedal in front of an amp, there's not much of a difference when it comes to the amps behaviour (ok, a bit, because of the active buffer, but let's not get into that). Ok, now slap a fuzz in front of your amp. A Big Muff comes with an input impedance of just 130kOhm. Now, this is all fine because that way the pedal works the best. But once you switch it off, you're back to normal (your amp input impedance).

So, not only was the way the Helix did it before FW 3.x just wrong (wrong = not representing the scenario it's supposed to represent, which I think is what a modeler should do), it even had a good potential to mess with your precious amp tone because you thought it'd be nice to slap that pedal in, even if it's on bypass most of the time - and that's precisely what's not happening with Boss pedals.

Whatever, before FW 3.x it was pretty much pointless to make use of the auto impedance feature, now it's at least as in the real world (fwiw, personally, I wish I could assign an individual impedance to each drive pedal).

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Btw, as a side tip: IMO, the best fuzzy tone available in the Helix comes from the Top Secret OD. The true fuzz models aren't particularly great for my ears (the one in my Amplifirebox is a lot better, they should steal it - and it doesn't even need any impedance wizardry).

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14 minutes ago, SaschaFranck said:

(fwiw, personally, I wish I could assign an individual impedance to each drive pedal).

 

I wish there was a setting that tells the Helix what impedance to use when a Loop block is the first active block. I've found that the 230k setting is best for most accurately representing the way my amp sounds on its own (I measured it to be around 400k, but there's no setting between 230k and 1M, and 230k sounds a little better). But because I'm using 230k on the input block instead of the Auto setting, the input impedance doesn't change when I use a block that needs a much lower impedance to sound right. 

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I have to say I TRULY enjoy these interchanges where someone with 67 posts questions the validity of answers given by someone with 8,770 posts.  I often just go microwave some popcorn, sit down and wait for the entertainment to begin.  I really need a new hobby......

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5 minutes ago, DunedinDragon said:

I have to say I TRULY enjoy these interchanges where someone with 67 posts questions the validity of answers given by someone with 8,770 posts.

 

You're not suggesting that Phil will be always right because he has more posts, are you? Phil is often right, he's a very knowledgeable guy but I often disagree with him myself. Am I wrong because I only have 305 posts? 

 

At any rate, Phil is right in this case. It wasn't a bug, it was a design flaw. It functioned exactly how it was designed, it's just that it wasn't designed properly. Now it is (well, sorta... read my post above). And you can take that to the bank, along with my three hundred and SIX posts!!

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14 minutes ago, DunedinDragon said:

I have to say I TRULY enjoy these interchanges where someone with 67 posts questions the validity of answers given by someone with 8,770 posts.  I often just go microwave some popcorn, sit down and wait for the entertainment to begin.  I really need a new hobby......

I do have 10442 posts in the reaper daw forum if that counts for any extra street cred. Seriously though. I'm struggling with which pedal board to get and the line 6 helix so far is way ahead of all the other ones I've seen. The headrush pedalboard has very little input/output on the back and then you have something brand-new like the fractal FM 9 that is limited to four parameter changes per scene and no touchscreen which makes me shake my head for such a new unit.  I over research things before I buy them and that way I'm usually happy with my choice but usually ask way too many questions. Thank you for the great group of people here and the great information. It's very appreciated

 

 

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30 minutes ago, DunedinDragon said:

I have to say I TRULY enjoy these interchanges where someone with 67 posts questions the validity of answers given by someone with 8,770 posts.

 

In all honesty, post counts are as irrelevant as it gets. In case someone is right with his first posting, nobody with 7379932992 posts would be "more right" because of the post count.

It's one of the biggest downsides of online forums, people respect regulars a lot more, even if they come up with utter nonsense (and no, I'm not refering to Phil but generally).

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47 minutes ago, SaschaFranck said:

 

That's true - but yes, it's also true that it's a bit like apples and oranges. Simply because Boss pedals introduce a typical 1MOhm impedance, hence pretty much the same as, say, an amp or most other pedals. In other words: In case you slap a Boss pedal in front of an amp, there's not much of a difference when it comes to the amps behaviour (ok, a bit, because of the active buffer, but let's not get into that). Ok, now slap a fuzz in front of your amp. A Big Muff comes with an input impedance of just 130kOhm. Now, this is all fine because that way the pedal works the best. But once you switch it off, you're back to normal (your amp input impedance).

So, not only was the way the Helix did it before FW 3.x just wrong (wrong = not representing the scenario it's supposed to represent, which I think is what a modeler should do), it even had a good potential to mess with your precious amp tone because you thought it'd be nice to slap that pedal in, even if it's on bypass most of the time - and that's precisely what's not happening with Boss pedals.

Whatever, before FW 3.x it was pretty much pointless to make use of the auto impedance feature, now it's at least as in the real world (fwiw, personally, I wish I could assign an individual impedance to each drive pedal).

It's a question of buffered vs true bypass as default behavior - Line6 originally went with what most pedals do: buffer. I agree  - the recent change was for the better.

BTW: Boss pedals come with a variety of input impedances.

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8 minutes ago, Schmalle said:

Line6 originally went with what most pedals do: buffer.

 

No. They went for something that is only possible/happening in the virtual world, namely a pedal buffering at an input impedance that doesn't exist in the real world. Sure, you could create a buffer coming with 130kOhm input impedance - but AFAIK, those don't exist (for good reasons).

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25 minutes ago, SaschaFranck said:

No. They went for something that is only possible/happening in the virtual world, namely a pedal buffering at an input impedance that doesn't exist in the real world. Sure, you could create a buffer coming with 130kOhm input impedance - but AFAIK, those don't exist (for good reasons).

Boss OD-1: 220kOhm

Boss CE-1: 50kOhm max

...

To state it as clear as possible: If the first pedal block defines the input impedance while being in bypass state - that is buffered bypass behavior.

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So with the new auto setting if you have a fuzz face and then an amp both enabled and then you presser foot switch to disable the fuzz face will the input impedance now change to the one for the amp? That's what I hope it would do

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11 minutes ago, coachz said:

So with the new auto setting if you have a fuzz face and then an amp both enabled and then you presser foot switch to disable the fuzz face will the input impedance now change to the one for the amp? That's what I hope it would do


Yes.

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10 hours ago, Schmalle said:

Boss OD-1: 220kOhm

Boss CE-1: 50kOhm max

 

Ooops, didn't know they went that low with the OD-1 (I was aware of the CE-1, but usually it's not too relevant in case you run other active things in front).

 

Triggered by this discussion and because I already wondered about it before, I looked around a bit and found that quite some buffered bypass pedals actually seem to come with lower impedances than 1MOhm. Doesn't seem to be unusual to find something like around 500kOhm.

A) Makes me wonder why we don't see anything like 500k in the Helix (the step between 1M and 230k is quite a noticeable one), b) it sort of explains why I'm usually getting along better with 220k than with 1M, as I had a 535 Cry Baby (actively buffered, too) on my pedalboards for decades.

This is also why I'd like to see an option to assign an input impedance manually to whatever pedals.

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Even assigning a varying impedance to a control could be useful.

 

https://www.electrosmash.com/fuzz-face

 

The Fuzz Face has a very low input impedance that will change with the position of the RFUZZ potentiometer (between 5.2KΩ and 8.4KΩ in the simulation). So the feedback network has a negative impact on this parameter.

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20 hours ago, coachz said:

Can you present some proof that this was by design?

 

How the design worked was written into the early manuals.... and defended (for a while) on the forums by line 6 reps. 

 

20 hours ago, coachz said:

Surely doesn't make any sense to have an effect when bypassed alter the sound.

 

Well, fixed impedance is the by-product of a buffered pedal... I know countless players with pedal boards that start with a buffered pedal. 

  • Auto Imp: First Block: This is how a buffered pedal effects your pedal board when placed first.
  • Auto Imp: First Active Block: This is how true bypass pedals effect your pedal board when placed first.
  • And of course... there is an option to choose a fixed impedance on each preset, bypassing the Auto Imp altogether. 

No right, no wrong... just personal preference on how to proceed.

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It's all good.  For me as a non-pedal aficionado, I look at helix as a cool box that has sounds just like the real things.  I would never have expected a bypassed effect to alter the sound.  In my DAW, bypassing effects totally leaves them out so I was expecting the same behavior.  The fact that the engineers worked so hard to model the pedals accurately is a testament to their quality.  This latest choice for impedance is really great for users like me that just expect a different behavior.  I could also see selectable impedance ranges per effect and even controllable by other parameters like drive etc... to be awesome but maybe not so easy to implement.

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10 minutes ago, coachz said:

It's all good.  For me as a non-pedal aficionado, I look at helix as a cool box that has sounds just like the real things.  I would never have expected a bypassed effect to alter the sound. 

 

Makes sense. If you weren't into pedals you wouldn't realize the effect a buffered pedal had, whether the effect was on or off. 

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