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Hd500x: Optimal Channel Volume?


justcrash
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In the process of trying to make all the volumes of my patches the same, I have turned up a lot of the channel volumes on my patches. The end results SEEMS to be an artificially plastic tone. Is there a "magic number" I should not go over when setting channel volume? Because, as I am discovering, when playing it through a PA, I can barely turn up the volume knob on the channel, so obviously its a hot signal.

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the "secret" as I have found it is to understand that the channel volume and master volume are chained.  The channel volume feeds the master volume which feeds the outputs.  The difference is the channel volume is strictly for amp leveling and the master is for global output levels.

 

What I suggest is to set the POD Master volume to 1/2 or less.  Now take your lowest volume amp model and max out the channel volume. If it is now too loud, lower the Master a bit.  Now without touching the Master use the channel volume to match all your other amp models.  Once you have them set, you should save them and you will have a set of level matched amps to use building patches.  You will use the POD Master volume to set the actual volume for the venue or system you are playing through.

 

This way you will find your higher gain amp models' channel volumes are not too high and you can make further adjustments with Drive and the DEP settings and even the mixer levels... 

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I think the solution to avoid hissing is not simply to set the Master volume high. In my experience Master volume amplifies hiss frequencies just as well as the frequencies you want amplified.

At the end of the day you need some target volume and the question becomes how do you get there with minimal hissing or other electronic noise.

... and that usually means that all signals in the whole processing chain (between equipment and between models) need to be properly gain staged/leveled to maximize signal-to-noise level throughout the signal chain.

For example, if your amp model does not produce a lot of gain you should probably think about how to provide a strong input signal rather than just making up for the low gain with turning channel or master volume up, which will not only amplify your wanted frequencies but also the relatively high noise level that entered the amp with a not so optimal input signal level.

If anyone has more insight why a low master volume generates 'extra' hiss I'd love to hear it.

Martin

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I think they're just referring to cable noise between the HD500 and whatever it's plugged into. Maximize the signal coming out of the HD500 in order to minimize the effects of the noise introduced by the signal chain after the HD500. Nothing else makes sense to me.

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Yes, agree, ... and I take that effect as a given. But describing it the way they did invites overdriving the output in an attempt to get the best possible signal-to-noise behavior rather than simply stating that Master should be set to achieve an output signal level with reasonable headroom (probably somewhere between -12 to -6 dB peak) to maximize signal-to-noise performance while not introducing compression or even distortion of analog components in the subsequent signal path.

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