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ETA on Helix update?


boynigel
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I'm always anxious for new features/improvements.  Any rumors as to any big updates on the horizon?

 

Fractal should be sending me a FM9 waitlist invitation any day now.  As exciting as it is, it's also daunting as their "scenes" vs the helix snapshots is hard for me to wrap my head around, having to learn a new language, etc.

 

the consensus seems to be that the FM9 does sound better, and it's allowed to given that the helix is now 7 years old, but will it be significant enough to get me to leave the Helix ecosystem?  I know L6 has said, "don't hold your breath on a V2 of Helix anytime soon" but perhaps another big update could offer a glimpse of what's to come, and what to expect when V2 does arrive.  I'd stick around for the ecosystem alone as long as the sound quality isn't night and day better on the FM9.

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On 9/1/2022 at 10:00 AM, boynigel said:

....  Any rumors as to any big updates on the horizon?

....

Yes. An update is coming 'soon'. Apply your own definition of 'soon' to either be disappointed or elated when it's released.

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On 9/1/2022 at 3:00 PM, boynigel said:

Any rumors as to any big updates on the horizon?

 

Some sage advice from Digital Igloo posted way back -

 

Quote from 2.92 release notes.

 

“Instead of hanging out on social media, desperately asking when the next firmware's dropping, you can now, I dunno, actually play guitar? As soon as a new update becomes available, HX Edit will tell you, and all you gotta do is follow the prompts.”

 

Oh, yeah -Eric also said it will be soon!

 

 

On 9/1/2022 at 3:00 PM, boynigel said:

Fractal should be sending me a FM9 waitlist invitation any day now. 

 

Oh, yeah - your chance to wait will be soon!

 

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On 9/1/2022 at 11:08 AM, datacommando said:

 

“Instead of hanging out on social media, desperately asking when the next firmware's dropping, you can now, I dunno, actually play guitar? As soon as a new update becomes available, HX Edit will tell you, and all you gotta do is follow the prompts.”

Cue eye roll.  I play 3 hours a day.  Not bad considering i've a full time job, go to the gym for an hour, walk my dog for a half-hour, and still manage to have family time.

 

On 9/1/2022 at 11:08 AM, datacommando said:
On 9/1/2022 at 10:00 AM, boynigel said:

Fractal should be sending me a FM9 waitlist invitation any day now. 

 

Oh, yeah - your chance to wait will be soon!

Nope.  people with the same waitlist signup day as me have been getting invites this week.  Still very much on the fence at this point will be a tough decision when the email does arrive.

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On 9/1/2022 at 4:42 PM, boynigel said:

Nope.  people with the same waitlist signup day as me have been getting invites this week.  Still very much on the fence at this point will be a tough decision when the email does arrive.

 

Well, at least with the Fractal stuff  you won't have to post in their forums "I'm always anxious for new features/improvements". It seems to be a never ending process updating their stuff. That might bite into your guitar playing time. ;-)

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I'm curious, what exactly you are missing in the firmware?  At this point, except very few esoteric specific delays, amps, the Helix has everything.  I would rather they spend time fixing bugs, and audio glitches, like the popping noises when you switch your amp on/off for example.  

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On 9/1/2022 at 1:07 PM, theElevators said:

I'm curious, what exactly you are missing in the firmware?

anything that would improve sonics (tone) that would narrow the gap in terms of how it compares to the tone of the Fractal stuff.  I'm well aware that it's a narrow gap already...nearly indiscernible (if not totally) in the context of a mix...at least listening to compressed youtube vids.  but as an OCD guitarist, i'm always looking for the best tone i can get.  I think what it's going to come down to, for me, is just buying the FM9 and comparing it side by side w/my LT. 

 

If the FM9 sounds significantly better than the sounds i can dial in on my LT, i'll suck it up and learn the new (fractal) language.  If the tonal differences are like splitting hairs, screw that, I'll sell the Fractal and recoup my money.  I'd rather be playing, and i'm not going to commit to all the time of learning a new language for the sake of something that sounds maybe 3% better.

 

With all that said, my guess is that any update wouldn't improve upon tonal realism of existing models, but rather, all the things we've come to expect from updates- bug fixes, glitches, etc as you mentioned.  I just thought that maybe, given that Helix is getting on in age, that L6 would consider that type of improvement in an update as to hold us over until Helix 2 arrives someday...especially considering all the recent competition, to stop people from jumping ship to things like the FM9.

 

I'm not holding my breath though. 

 

I'm not disappointed w/my LT's tone, but i'm honest enough to admit that if something sounds significantly better, and it's out there, i want it...as long as the learning curve to tonal rewards ratio isn't totally skewed in favor of operational headaches.

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DI's latest post last evening in the The Gear Page's Helix 3.2 Thread:

 

"We're now 100% feature complete (plenty of bugs to still squash), but the update takes a looooong time. We're looking at methods to shorten it."

DIrect URL to quote: https://www.thegearpage.net/board/index.php?threads/helix-3-2.2223358/post-35420495

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On 9/1/2022 at 8:25 PM, boynigel said:

anything that would improve sonics (tone) that would narrow the gap in terms of how it compares to the tone of the Fractal stuff.  I'm well aware that it's a narrow gap already...nearly indiscernible (if not totally) in the context of a mix...at least listening to compressed youtube vids.  but as an OCD guitarist, i'm always looking for the best tone i can get.  I think what it's going to come down to, for me, is just buying the FM9 and comparing it side by side w/my LT. 

 

If the FM9 sounds significantly better than the sounds i can dial in on my LT, i'll suck it up and learn the new (fractal) language.  If the tonal differences are like splitting hairs, screw that, I'll sell the Fractal and recoup my money.  I'd rather be playing, and i'm not going to commit to all the time of learning a new language for the sake of something that sounds maybe 3% better.

 

With all that said, my guess is that any update wouldn't improve upon tonal realism of existing models, but rather, all the things we've come to expect from updates- bug fixes, glitches, etc as you mentioned.  I just thought that maybe, given that Helix is getting on in age, that L6 would consider that type of improvement in an update as to hold us over until Helix 2 arrives someday...especially considering all the recent competition, to stop people from jumping ship to things like the FM9.

 

I'm not holding my breath though. 

 

I'm not disappointed w/my LT's tone, but i'm honest enough to admit that if something sounds significantly better, and it's out there, i want it...as long as the learning curve to tonal rewards ratio isn't totally skewed in favor of operational headaches.

I know where you're coming from mate, same here. I've had my Helix for years and I'm happier with it now than I was when I first got it, mainly because it's not the easiest thing to get great tones out of - yes I know some will disagree but as a high gain player, you do have to experiment a bit to get good stuff, it's certainly not out of the box, and the factory presets are shocking, they probably lose more sales due to those things. 

 

Having looked at the Fractal stuff in depth over the last year, there's no question it does have the edge in the amp tones, it's easier to get great sounding tones more quickly. Whatever anyone says, you have to be honest about this. There are far too many people who have gone from Helix to fractal to ignore that, not many go the other way, not to mention the major artists who are using fractal. Now having said all that, I chose not to make the move to Fractal because I started getting better results with the Helix, and as has been posted here recently, there was a suggestion that the next update would bring improvements in the tones, so I'm willing to wait for that and see how it works out.

 

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On 9/2/2022 at 8:13 AM, Paulzx said:

I know where you're coming from mate, same here. I've had my Helix for years and I'm happier with it now than I was when I first got it, mainly because it's not the easiest thing to get great tones out of - yes I know some will disagree but as a high gain player, you do have to experiment a bit to get good stuff, it's certainly not out of the box, and the factory presets are shocking, they probably lose more sales due to those things. 

 

Having looked at the Fractal stuff in depth over the last year, there's no question it does have the edge in the amp tones, it's easier to get great sounding tones more quickly. Whatever anyone says, you have to be honest about this. There are far too many people who have gone from Helix to fractal to ignore that, not many go the other way, not to mention the major artists who are using fractal. Now having said all that, I chose not to make the move to Fractal because I started getting better results with the Helix, and as has been posted here recently, there was a suggestion that the next update would bring improvements in the tones, so I'm willing to wait for that and see how it works out.

here's where it gets tuff- my invitation from fractal came yesterday at 2 p.m.  i would imagine, based on their email, that if i don't reply w/in the next 2 hours i'll lose my reserved unit.  time to do some coin flipping!

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On 9/2/2022 at 2:53 PM, PierM said:

HOLY COW!

 

A "fractal vs helix" and "when they release new firmware" in a single thread.

 

Well, this is gonna break the forum! lol!

Life's hard for some people.

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On 9/2/2022 at 9:08 PM, boynigel said:

Life's hard for some people.

Haha I don't know why it's a hard conversation to have. In most cases people who have run the various modellers side by side will always tell you the Fractals and quad cortex do sound better but the Helix wins on practicality which is its big selling point. If you have the funds to sign up for an fm9 I would do it because it's the closest form factor to a Helix. I would be too curious to resist it!

 

Just as well I'm not on the fm9 waiting list, instead I want to see what line 6 can do in the next update because if they can make an improvement in the sound on the Helix I will be more than happy and it's still the best bang for buck unit out there by a country mile.

 

If you get your fm9 make sure to follow up with your impression of it, I would be curious to know how you get on compared to your helix

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I think the Helix sounds just as great as FM9, or Kemper.  The reason people still have doubts is IMHO:

 

1. Past reputation of Line 6, the various Spider models, the people who tended to use those amps and the type of crappy music those people used to make with those amps.  It's like Subaru Imprezza -- it's a great reliable car and actually pretty safe, however it's driven by people who are predominantly d-bags, so it gets that reputation of a d-bag car.  (it also gets crashed a lot more than other cars because of the street racing, inspired by Fast and the Furious).

 

2. Great difficulty to get your familiar tone and feel out of the box.  My setup was basically a DS-1 and a Fender amp in the analog world.  I could not find a decent distortion block that would interact with my volume knob the same way as the real thing for about a week. Once I dialed in my basic sound, the rest was very easy.  I now have 60 presets that I have dialed in. 

 

 

 

 

 

In reality Line 6 gear has been used on countless recording sessions and live performances.  Even going back to Pod HD-500 being used by Steve Howe as far back as 2013.  Good enough for him, good enough for me. 

 

From several review videos, it is evident that FM9's stuff sounds great out of the box, compared to the Helix.  Their blocks just work right away the way they should.  I bet you if I take a DS-1 emulation and drag it into my chain on FM9, it'll sound exactly like the real thing.  On the Helix, the "Deez-1" sounded and felt absolutely nothing like the real thing: it had weird sag, it did not clean up with the volume knob, it had hiss. 

 

I've watched Steve Sterlacci's videos about Fractal vs. Helix, and Fractal's "scenes" are way more complicated to set up than what the Helix offers with snapshots, for example.  But in terms of tone, multiple people said that everything just works, factory presets are great and all that.  I think Line 6 can learn a thing or two from them. 

 

I love the sound options of the Helix, what worries me a little is the build quality as I've had an issue with the volume pedal, etc.  But then again, I've seen people complained about the USB jack dying on their FM9.  Everything is cheap Chinese printed circuit board stuff nowadays.  I have my Nord Electro 2 from 2006 for example -- still works absolutely great, nothing is misfiring, all switches work just fine. 

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On 9/2/2022 at 7:13 AM, Paulzx said:

Having looked at the Fractal stuff in depth over the last year, there's no question it does have the edge in the amp tones, it's easier to get great sounding tones more quickly.

 

IMO.... I might agree that a Fractal can be "easier" to get a better core tone, but I don't believe the "amps" are inherently better. 

I believe this is mostly the result of the stock cabinets... and options within. 

  • Fractal currently has more options to manipulate the stock cabs, mics, etc... (great for the power user)
  • Fractal has better "default settings" of said cabs/mics/positions.  (great for the person that just wants a quick great tone)

The rumors are flying that this will be part of the next Helix update... if true (and done right), it could flip this debate on it's head rather quickly.

 

Time will tell.... 

 

NOTE: I do agree that the Helix factory presets and many of the "default" settings for amps and effects leave a lot to be desired. It's not an issue for me because I always roll my own tones, but I can see where having better tones instantly can help many/most people. 

 

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On 9/3/2022 at 8:19 AM, theElevators said:

It's like Subaru Imprezza -- it's a great reliable car and actually pretty safe, however it's driven by people who are predominantly d-bags, so it gets that reputation of a d-bag car.  (it also gets crashed a lot more than other cars because of the street racing, inspired by Fast and the Furious).

Well, at least you didn't flat out say, "WRX".  LOL  I drive a 2017 wrx...but I'm 54 and don't drive it like a douche.  I wanted 4-doors, all wheel drive, and a car that could get out of it's own way...and priced under 30 grand as I only drive 8,000 miles a year and can't justify $45,000 for a vehicle.   Not to hijack my own post, ha!

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On 9/3/2022 at 8:19 AM, theElevators said:

I think the Helix sounds just as great as FM9, or Kemper. 

Another potential selling point of the fm9 is 4 cores versus 2 cores in the helix.  more HP. 

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On 9/3/2022 at 3:27 AM, Paulzx said:

If you get your fm9 make sure to follow up with your impression of it, I would be curious to know how you get on compared to your helix

Driving to Fractal on Tuesday to pick it up.  Once I get some time in w/it I can DM you if you're truly curious.

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On 9/5/2022 at 9:55 PM, boynigel said:

Another potential selling point of the fm9 is 4 cores versus 2 cores in the helix.  more HP. 

 

Does also cost twice the helix. I wouldnt call this a "selling point". You are just paying for those extra cores.

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On 9/5/2022 at 8:53 PM, boynigel said:

Well, at least you didn't flat out say, "WRX".  LOL  I drive a 2017 wrx...but I'm 54 and don't drive it like a douche.  I wanted 4-doors, all wheel drive, and a car that could get out of it's own way...and priced under 30 grand as I only drive 8,000 miles a year and can't justify $45,000 for a vehicle.   Not to hijack my own post, ha!

That made me chuckle..

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On 9/5/2022 at 8:57 PM, boynigel said:

Driving to Fractal on Tuesday to pick it up.  Once I get some time in w/it I can DM you if you're truly curious.

Yep genuinely curious. Everyone to a man I've spoken to who had both devices have said the Fractal wins hands down so I'm not expecting a much different reply! I think you have to accept that when metallica, def leppard, satriani and petrucci etc are all using fractal units, they are the benchmark units.

 

Helix is't that far behind though, and for me at least I don't want to spend the extra money at the moment lol. I don't think you can DM on here. They disabled it didn't they?

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On 9/5/2022 at 4:19 PM, PierM said:

Does also cost twice the helix. I wouldnt call this a "selling point". You are just paying for those extra cores.

I don't know where you live, but where I live a fm9 is NOT 2X the price of my Helix LT.  Not even close.

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Well, I can say that my "like new" Helix LT cost me 750 dollars in December of 2019.  So roughly twice the price.  However, yeah it costs about the same as the Helix floor, plus you need to get a gig bag and Expression pedal for it....

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On 9/5/2022 at 4:40 PM, Paulzx said:

I think you have to accept that when metallica, def leppard, satriani and petrucci etc are all using fractal units, they are the benchmark units.

 

I can respect their accomplishments and contributions, but I prefer a different subset of players... and the players I prefer don't use Fractals. 

 

IMO... "Kemper, Fractal or Helix" is just the new version of "Fender, Vox or Marshall". 

Find the product that suits you best and go make some music.

 

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On 9/6/2022 at 1:00 AM, boynigel said:

I don't know where you live, but where I live a fm9 is NOT 2X the price of my Helix LT.  Not even close.

 

Europe. Last time I looked at the FM9, was listed at 2499€. I guess it depends on the EUR/USD exchange, but yeah...never seen a FM9 priced as the helix. Not even close. ;)

 

EDIT: I see this is called "FM9 Turbo", so maybe it cost more than the original version, dunno. Anyway, this is the only model you can pre-order over EU.

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On 9/3/2022 at 3:27 AM, Paulzx said:

 

If you get your fm9 make sure to follow up with your impression of it, I would be curious to know how you get on compared to your helix

Update.  After spending two solid days with the FM9 and comparing it with my LT, I’ve sold the FM9.  My main condition for it to retire my LT was simply that it had to sound markedly better.  It did not.  It did sound better “out of the box” as many have said, meaning its presets are better dialed in than Helix presets.  For my uses, I use a handful of “core” amp tones from the Vox, Marshall, Fender, and T-Wreck families (and their boutique knock offs).  When I compared the FM9 sounds (from the same families) to my core tones, they were neither better nor worse.  Any differences could be compensated for quite easily via EQ or a modeled amp’s tone stack.

 

Disclosure- I use my LT into the effects loop returns of my Bad Cat amps, which means I don’t use cabinet modeling or IR’s as I prefer “amp in a room” tones.  Perhaps if I were comparing the full scope of modeling (amp AND speakers, mics, etc), I would have chosen otherwise, but for my needs, the Helix LT remains king because:

 

·         Tonally it’s every bit as good as the Fractal, at least the way I’m using it w/my amps

·         Obviously its UI is far superior

·         Built in expression pedal

·         Better price

·         The updates keep coming!

·         Snapshots are better than Scenes, IMO …and easier to set up

 

…these are just off the top of my head, but the biggest reasons, again, are that the tone is on par, and snapshots.

I will admit that the Helix reverbs can’t compete with the FM9’s cloud style reverbs, but hey- I’m not an ambient guitarist so that’s not a big one on my list…plus i have an Eventide H9 Max if i ever needed "more" out of a reverb.  The Helix can still do some pretty great time-based tricks, just perhaps w/a bit less fidelity than FM9.

 

So yeah, I’m staying put with Helix.  I’m glad I got to try the FM9, but I’m even more glad that my LT is staying, because now I’m saving a ton of money as well as not having to deal with the headaches of learning a less user-friendly system.  Sure, it would be nice to have 4 cores, vs the Helix's 2, but very seldom do i run in to the problem of running out of CPU.

 

Sold the FM9 on CL at a profit (no, I didn’t gouge!) within 4 hours of listing it!

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I jumped the gun and sold my Helix Floor last year after buying the FM3. While I loved a few things about the FM3, amp models mainly, I was so happy with the Helix that I sold the FM3 and acquired another Helix Floor. I spent a few years gigging a Boss GT8 and GT10 so I'm no stranger to learning a complicated interface, but I just couldn't enjoy anything about the FM3 interface. Every modeller I've had has noise issues running USB while using them in 4CM with my amps. With fractal, the editor feels like a necessity so i was always dealing with the noise. With Helix, HX Edit is just a bonus and can easily do everything on the fly without it. While i am a tinkerer by nature, i just don't give a rats lollipop about changing the diodes in an overdrive so all of those crazy details in the Fractal were lost on me.

 

As far as sound, i think Helix is fantastic and about on par with Fractal at this point. It all boils down to what people think sounds best to them. As guitar players, we all win! 

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On 9/8/2022 at 6:31 PM, boynigel said:

Update.  After spending two solid days with the FM9 and comparing it with my LT, I’ve sold the FM9.  My main condition for it to retire my LT was simply that it had to sound markedly better.  It did not.  It did sound better “out of the box” as many have said, meaning its presets are better dialed in than Helix presets.  For my uses, I use a handful of “core” amp tones from the Vox, Marshall, Fender, and T-Wreck families (and their boutique knock offs).  When I compared the FM9 sounds (from the same families) to my core tones, they were neither better nor worse.  Any differences could be compensated for quite easily via EQ or a modeled amp’s tone stack.

 

Disclosure- I use my LT into the effects loop returns of my Bad Cat amps, which means I don’t use cabinet modeling or IR’s as I prefer “amp in a room” tones.  Perhaps if I were comparing the full scope of modeling (amp AND speakers, mics, etc), I would have chosen otherwise, but for my needs, the Helix LT remains king because:

 

·         Tonally it’s every bit as good as the Fractal, at least the way I’m using it w/my amps

·         Obviously its UI is far superior

·         Built in expression pedal

·         Better price

·         The updates keep coming!

·         Snapshots are better than Scenes, IMO …and easier to set up

 

…these are just off the top of my head, but the biggest reasons, again, are that the tone is on par, and snapshots.

I will admit that the Helix reverbs can’t compete with the FM9’s cloud style reverbs, but hey- I’m not an ambient guitarist so that’s not a big one on my list…plus i have an Eventide H9 Max if i ever needed "more" out of a reverb.  The Helix can still do some pretty great time-based tricks, just perhaps w/a bit less fidelity than FM9.

 

So yeah, I’m staying put with Helix.  I’m glad I got to try the FM9, but I’m even more glad that my LT is staying, because now I’m saving a ton of money as well as not having to deal with the headaches of learning a less user-friendly system.  Sure, it would be nice to have 4 cores, vs the Helix's 2, but very seldom do i run in to the problem of running out of CPU.

 

Sold the FM9 on CL at a profit (no, I didn’t gouge!) within 4 hours of listing it!

 

Surprising result and good news for the Helix!

However, seeing as you're not using it as a stand alone device, that does muddy the waters a bit. I would have liked to have known how it stacked up on its own without the real amp in the equation. Interesting though..

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It's so strange to me when people say "the Helix is now 7-years old so of course it doesn't sound as good as __".  It's a computer running some software.  I am a software engineer and I sure don't judge how well my software runs based on the pc that I wrote it with.  The helix is really only as old as it's last software update, right?  Am I missing something?

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On 9/15/2022 at 5:23 PM, toddkc said:

It's so strange to me when people say "the Helix is now 7-years old so of course it doesn't sound as good as __".  It's a computer running some software.  I am a software engineer and I sure don't judge how well my software runs based on the pc that I wrote it with.  The helix is really only as old as it's last software update, right?  Am I missing something?

To be sure, there have been some changes in the underlying DSP technologies that ALL modelers depend on, but that hasn't been any kind of quantum change like it was 7 years ago when this generation of processors was introduced.  What has changed is the availability of programming expertise in working with these technologies.  That applies to any and all of the current and older chips and it applies equally well to the development expertise at Line 6.

When I got my Helix 7 years ago I really couldn't imagine all the things they've been able to do with this technology.  But none of those changes have anything to do with newer versions of the DSP chip.  It has to do with learning how to do it better and more efficiently.  Some of that applies to the basic tone such as the oversampling that was introduced a couple of releases ago.  The VAST majority of the improvements, in my opinion, were the result of Line 6's decision to re-architect the underlying code into what they referred to, at the time, as "Helix Core" a few years ago.  This is what newer people don't understand about newer products.  All of those products will undoubtedly need to go through that same evolution because you NEVER get it optimized the first time through.  The Helix has been there and done that already.

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On 9/16/2022 at 2:49 AM, DunedinDragon said:

The VAST majority of the improvements, in my opinion, were the result of Line 6's decision to re-architect the underlying code into what they referred to, at the time, as "Helix Core" a few years ago.  This is what newer people don't understand about newer products.  All of those products will undoubtedly need to go through that same evolution because you NEVER get it optimized the first time through.  The Helix has been there and done that already.

I was not aware of this specific "helix core" update.  Thanks for this info!  Very interesting stuff.

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I have been reading this topic, and as the commenter above, new things are learned with this kind of conversations, so i guess it can be productive. That said, i guess a lot of people would agree if we hope to have " more DSP power" i am not technical on this kind of DSP topics so i am not sure if a "more powerfull processor" would help when for example, you build a block with multiple Pitch shifter effect (this effects consume up to 50% according to Line6) I am using the Native version so i dont have that problem as it has the hardware. And for the HW version, im not sure if it has bluetooth capabilities, but now, as a personal project, and with arduino, i am trying to build a Digital Whammy Bar (ala, Virtual jeff pro) that will wok only as midi controller, that will change the pitch with the Poly whammy effect in HN. So i will not be out of tune when using the effect. Let see if it works :D   ]

Going back to the "bigger and more powerfull processor", I would hope to see Latancy improvements on the Variax series, as they sound good enough in my opinions, but in youtube you can find people doing test with alt tunnings and accoustic sims at the same time, and on those cases latency goes much higher. 

 

So, time will tell if L6 will improve or abandonce such tecnologies. 

 

Cheers

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On 9/16/2022 at 2:28 PM, toddkc said:

I was not aware of this specific "helix core" update.  Thanks for this info!  Very interesting stuff.


Hi,

 

The Core transition occurred during the v.2.80 firmware update. For many people who didn’t read the release notes, it could appear that the installation had failed half way through the process. This brought about a spate of “update bricked my Helix” threads. Oh, what fun we had in here with that one.
 

Anyhow, the release notes for each update are on the firmware download pages, so always make point of reading them thoroughly, especially as a a rather large update is currently anticipated by all users.

 

If you want to check out the history of the updates, and stacks of other useful info, check out this handy resource.

 

https://helixhelp.com

 

Hope this helps/makes sense.

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On 9/16/2022 at 3:43 PM, josehdx said:

I have been reading this topic, and as the commenter above, new things are learned with this kind of conversations, so i guess it can be productive. That said, i guess a lot of people would agree if we hope to have " more DSP power" i am not technical on this kind of DSP topics so i am not sure if a "more powerfull processor" would help when for example, you build a block with multiple Pitch shifter effect (this effects consume up to 50% according to Line6) I am using the Native version so i dont have that problem as it has the hardware. And for the HW version, im not sure if it has bluetooth capabilities, but now, as a personal project, and with arduino, i am trying to build a Digital Whammy Bar (ala, Virtual jeff pro) that will wok only as midi controller, that will change the pitch with the Poly whammy effect in HN. So i will not be out of tune when using the effect. Let see if it works :D   ]

Going back to the "bigger and more powerfull processor", I would hope to see Latancy improvements on the Variax series, as they sound good enough in my opinions, but in youtube you can find people doing test with alt tunnings and accoustic sims at the same time, and on those cases latency goes much higher. 

 

So, time will tell if L6 will improve or abandonce such tecnologies. 

 

Cheers

I don't think dsp is the main thing people look at when comparing competitor units like the Fractal or kemper, it's mainly just the quality of the amp tones and the quality of the effects. If you're a high gain player like I am and someone comes along with a Marshall amp sim that sounds a lot more satisfying than what you're using, it's very tempting to switch or at least check out and that has been the case with the Fractals.

 

Personally I'm glad I didn't make the switch just because I've recently produced a lot of very satisfying high gain Marshall patches on my helix and I know the user interface so would have to be really tempted at this point to learn a new one. I can see how someone new to the Helix might be discouraged, it takes a lot of learning to craft a really good high gain patch and that's the downside with this unit, however, the results are achievable.

 

I think what I would like to see in an update would be great tones ready to go in the factory presets. The high gain presets are laughable really

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On 9/15/2022 at 4:21 PM, Paulzx said:

Surprising result and good news for the Helix!

However, seeing as you're not using it as a stand alone device, that does muddy the waters a bit. I would have liked to have known how it stacked up on its own without the real amp in the equation. Interesting though..

Right, I had to be honest about how I use Helix.  BUT, given that a lot of people use IR's it would stand to reason that if you're an IR user you'd have similar findings as mine given the level playing field of using the same IR.  Interestingly, when using the Helix into an amp's FX loop return, many amp models sound better keeping their power section intact (vs preamp only).  You'd think it'd sound hyped putting a preamp & power amp into a physical power amp, but it really doesn't...at least with  the amp models I use and the physical amps they're going into, again- two 15-watt Bad Cat EL84-based amps (stereo).

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On 9/18/2022 at 3:48 PM, boynigel said:

Interestingly, when using the Helix into an amp's FX loop return, many amp models sound better keeping their power section intact (vs preamp only).  You'd think it'd sound hyped putting a preamp & power amp into a physical power amp, but it really doesn't...at least with  the amp models I use and the physical amps they're going into, again- two 15-watt Bad Cat EL84-based amps (stereo).

 

A lot of power amps are still relatively neutral... while others are not and most power amps impart very little color until they are pushed hard. Trying both options to see what you like best is never a bad idea... at times it can lead to some unique results. 

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