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Tube Amp


aed1421
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The people that have hired me want me to use a tube amp on an upcoming tour.  I think the Helix does everything I need and more but I am not paying myself.  Having said that I need a nice small tube combo that works well with Helix.  4CM + Ext Amp switching will likely be used.  

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2 hours ago, aed1421 said:

The people that have hired me want me to use a tube amp on an upcoming tour. 

 

I actually keep a few amps around for this very reason. Given a choice, I always use the Helix > Direct to FOH & Monitors > FRFR if needed for myself.  BUT - there are times the band/artist/tour demands an amp. Like you, I just comply - get a pay day/week/month and get through it :) 

 

Our situations may differ... please keep that in mind....
I always use an amp as a clean platform, then use pedals/effects to shape the tone. I got used to doing this with my old pedal board because I do a lot of fly in gigs and rely on backline amps. I never know what I'll get... so I don't depend on it. A clean amp with enough volume is all I never needed to sound like ME. I carried that over to the HELIX when setting up tones. (Studio is very different, I am  talking LIVE tones)

 

So with that in mind.. this is what I do. 

  • Every preset I have has a "amp/cab disabled" copy saved
  • I use those "no amp" presets into the front end of the amp I am using....
  • The amp I am using is set to be a "clean pedal platform"... then let the Helix do it's thing with effects.. including all dirt sounds. 
  • RESULT: My tones just work... with minimal basic adjustments to the amp.

 

2 hours ago, aed1421 said:

4CM + Ext Amp switching will likely be used.  

 

FWIW: When using an amp as a Clean Platform this step is not really needed... it's one of the many reasons I do things the way I do! I just plug into the front end of ANY DECENT amp. 

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I think a Hotrod Deluxe III or IV would do. And in case people want to "see" more from an amp (which they obviously and stupididly seem to), maybe consider a Marshall DSL40CR. Both of them do a pretty decent job in taking whatever it is on their power amps.

You can still "fake" 4CM (apparently that's what those folks like), just connect everything and don't activate the loops within the Helix. That way you can likely keep your patches intact. Just deactivate the cab/IR and do some finetunings to accommodate the speaker of the used amp.

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Marshall DSL-40C or 40CR.      You can use your Helix in 4CM & switch channels. 

 

I can only access the 2 channels via the helix ext amp setting and not the 2 modes in each channel on the DSL40.   I think I can access all 4 via midi but that is another cable to hook up on the road.  The Classic Gain and Ultra Gain have a lot of tone difference.  I would prefer to use the 2 modes in Classic gain and switch just between those and use the internal effects/drives in Helix.

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On 2/15/2022 at 1:31 PM, aed1421 said:

 

I can only access the 2 channels via the helix ext amp setting and not the 2 modes in each channel on the DSL40.   I think I can access all 4 via midi but that is another cable to hook up on the road.  The Classic Gain and Ultra Gain have a lot of tone difference.  I would prefer to use the 2 modes in Classic gain and switch just between those and use the internal effects/drives in Helix.

What type of music will you be playing? 

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On 2/14/2022 at 4:06 PM, codamedia said:

FWIW: When using an amp as a Clean Platform this step is not really needed... it's one of the many reasons I do things the way I do! I just plug into the front end of ANY DECENT amp. 

 

How do you get your modulations and delays after the pre-effects? How do you do that without using the 4CM?

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2 hours ago, adagosto said:

How do you get your modulations and delays after the pre-effects? How do you do that without using the 4CM?

 

The exact same way I did it when I ran a traditional pedal board and amplifier. 

LOADED PEDAL BOARD into the  FRONT END OF AN AMP....  (no 4cm)

 

The only thing that mattered was the order of effects on the pedal board.

When the amp is a "clean pedal platform".... 4CM is of less importance than if the overdrive on the amp was being used. 

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26 minutes ago, codamedia said:

The exact same way I did it when I ran a traditional pedal board and amplifier. 

LOADED PEDAL BOARD into the  FRONT END OF AN AMP....  (no 4cm)

 

The only thing that mattered was the order of effects on the pedal board.

When the amp is a "clean pedal platform".... 4CM is of less importance than if the overdrive on the amp was being used. 

 

Can you help be understand this, and I have to admit I think I'm off topic a little. But what it sounds like you're say is this....

 

You start with a clean tube amp (say a Fender xxx) and you build a pedal board with a few over drive and distortion pedals (first in line) and you then have a modulation or two pedals right after the distortion pedals. Then a delay or two pedals followed by a cool reverb pedal. Everything is in series (one to the next to the next) and THEN you plug that last reverb pedal into the input of you clean amp. 

 

Is that what you're saying you do?

 

If so, my question is how do you prevent your dirt pedals from having dirty repeats on your delay and dirty shimmers and stuff OR do you just live with that OR am I not understanding you?

 

I'm not challenging you on the effectiveness of this because I'd love to be able to do this too, but I just think that I can't....

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14 hours ago, adagosto said:

You start with a clean tube amp (say a Fender xxx) and you build a pedal board with a few over drive and distortion pedals (first in line) and you then have a modulation or two pedals right after the distortion pedals. Then a delay or two pedals followed by a cool reverb pedal. Everything is in series (one to the next to the next) and THEN you plug that last reverb pedal into the input of you clean amp. 

 

Is that what you're saying you do?

 

Yes - that's what do. It's exactly the same as if you build a pedal board and plug it into an amp. 

 

14 hours ago, adagosto said:

If so, my question is how do you prevent your dirt pedals from having dirty repeats on your delay and dirty shimmers and stuff OR do you just live with that OR am I not understanding you?

 

If there is DIRT before the delay or reverb, whether it is from pedals or an amp, you are going to get dirty repeats and/or dirty shimmers. They don't become clean just because you put them in a loop. Delays and Reverbs take on the characteristic they are fed. (Parallel effects can be different... but that is not the topic of this thread)

 

Have you ever owned a bunch of pedals and plugged them into a real amp? It works great! 

Don't over think it, the Helix is capable of this "simple/basic approach" as well. It doesn't have to be 4cm, 7cm, etc... etc... when using an amp. 

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On 2/18/2022 at 4:57 PM, adagosto said:

 

Can you help be understand this, and I have to admit I think I'm off topic a little. But what it sounds like you're say is this....

 

You start with a clean tube amp (say a Fender xxx) and you build a pedal board with a few over drive and distortion pedals (first in line) and you then have a modulation or two pedals right after the distortion pedals. Then a delay or two pedals followed by a cool reverb pedal. Everything is in series (one to the next to the next) and THEN you plug that last reverb pedal into the input of you clean amp. 

 

Is that what you're saying you do?

 

If so, my question is how do you prevent your dirt pedals from having dirty repeats on your delay and dirty shimmers and stuff OR do you just live with that OR am I not understanding you?

 

I'm not challenging you on the effectiveness of this because I'd love to be able to do this too, but I just think that I can't....

 

You also have the option of whether you want to set 'Trails' on or off in your delay and reverb effects. This allows, for example, the delay tail from a distorted lead to trail into a switch back to a clean rhythm sound. Many players find this more natural sounding and preferable to having the delay cut off completely when they switch song parts/settings. That is where using the 'Trails' parameter in tandem with snapshots comes into play. Players may similarly avoid having a delay or reverb from a distorted lead, trail off with a clean sound when switching parts/settings.

 

Additionally, you can always run your delay and reverb in a parallel path, even when using a simple, direct to the front of an amp set up with a clean(ish) sound, such as @codamedia was describing. This will allow you to determine which of your effects, such as distortion, will be in the signal path that receives delay and reverb, at least from the Helix. 

 

The advantages that those who connect with 4CM are usually after are either the ability to have their (most typically delay and reverb) effects processed after the preamp section of their guitar amp and before the power amp; or, the choice and ability to have presets that can use their guitar amp's preamp, or alternatively, completely bypass their guitar amp's preamp section so they can leverage the amp and cab modeling on their modeler. That way presets can be designed to go direct through the guitar amp's power amp section without coloration from the preamp. This approach tends to more accurately preserve the modeled amp and cab sound and prevents stacking the Helix's preamp on top of your guitar amp's preamp.

 

Anyway, it all comes down to your particular requirements and preferences as well as tolerance for complexity. The flexibility is there to find the setup that works best for you.

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