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bobwilken

Brand-new HD500X ... huge volume differences between presets

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POD HD500x just arrived brand-new from AMS to my house today.

Of course the first thing I did was plug it in and hook it up to the computer and Line 6 Monkey to register it and get the firmware  updated . I have never had one of these kind of fancy monsters before .... So I took about a half an hour to glance through the QuickStart guide. ...

I'm not very geek-smart , and being just a hobbyist I've never played live anywhere... so it seemed a little bit overwhelming to me at first ...

So anyways , just to get my ya-yas out .... I started running through some of the presents....

 I have only gone through the first three banks , and  the volume varies between presets from very , very loud to almost silent .... for a few of 'em I actually had to turn the amp up just to hear them.

Is this from the firmware update ? Or is it normal for new units to come all weirded out ....

needing to be geeked and tweaked from the onset.

Being brand-new , you'd  think it would have shipped initially in a relatively useful state that wouldn't require going all studio engineer on it.

Should I reinstall the firmware or something , I certainly have no desire to have to reset the volume of every individual preset.

 

and this comes on the heels of my brand new JTV-89F arriving all weirded out with the same volume problems ... So I guess I'm going to have to go all workbench on that too ..

i don't mean to sound angry , but I am pretty disappointed in Line6 ,  so far my "Dream Rig" starter kit is is acting more like a nightmare .. LOL !!

 

Any ideas ?

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That's normal. Think of the presets as "idea's" or "possibilities".

Many though are tweaked pretty well and you should find some that quickly suit your needs.

 

Besides the presets there are input and output settings to setup.

 

This isn't a simple plug and play unit, it takes some time to learn.

Read the big main manual and that will enlighten you a lot. ;)

There are many YouTube videos on it's use also if your more of a visual learner than a reader.

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Thanks for the head up Scotty ...

 Disappointing news .... But at least I know what  the deal is , and that I don't need to send it back....

Well not yet anyway ... HA !!

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Each amp model has it's own individual volume control that is saved per preset. This is a good thing as when playing live you may want to have different presets at different volumes depending on the song/phrase, etc. There is also a master volume control that controls overall volume.

 

Another thing to can affect volume is the mixer (the permanent block just after the amps in the signal flow). Most presets default to having the left and right channels panned hard left and hard right. If you use the mixer to center each channel, it can increase the volume on a specific preset quite a bit.

 

These are all things that will start to come more naturally to you as you get more familiar with the POD and all of its features.

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Also keep in mind that when touring the presets, a lot of them use the exp pedal for volume and other effects. So for some, it could be that the exp pedal is at or near the minimum position. I sometimes go through the presets when I'm bored and never really noticed any big volume discrepancies.

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I don't have the new X series, and I know nothing of the Variax. I have one of the older (dare I say "classic"?) POD HD 500's (which are apparently the same beast, with less memory) and my single largest complaint is volume disparity. Its been quite some time since I played with the built-in patches; I do, however, frequently play with my own patches adding and removing pedals, and  my single largest frustration there is the great difficulty in obtaining unity volume throughout the patch. Even changing an amp model on an existing patch can greatly vary it's volume.

But let me back up a bit.    You'll find many gripes about the volume disparity online, and many different approaches.  But before you jump to any conclusions quit yet, let me share some of my perspective with you.I say this as guy who has been playing this POD HD 500 for years in all manners, both on and off stage, and who also has a ridiculously, unnecessarily large collection of pedals ranging from old DOD and Boss to hand-crafted boutique pedals (the type where the fellow came to my house to debug my board):

-The POD HD is IMO a really good system, a great value and to me a valued asset. It is technology, and like all technology, it is not perfect.  The key is to understanding it's strengths and benefits, and understanding how to mitigate its weaknesses.  I am pretty happy with my HD now, but it took me a while to come to terms with it. 

-Built-in patches - just say NO. I have multiple digital systems, multiple keyboards and a full on synthesizer and without exception every single built in patch I've heard has completely displeased me and usually leaves me making disparaging remarks about teenagers attempting to "shred' on crappy equipment yet full volume in the middle of a crowded guitar shop.  Their sole purpose in my opinion is to demonstrate the extremes so that someone demoing the system in a store can quickly hear all the crazy sounds they are able to get out of it.  I honestly believe they intentionally build them to appeal to aforementioned "shredder kids".   Chances are, hopefully - you're going to play with the demo patches enough to learn how the system works, and  then quickly move on to making your own patches and developing your own sound. If you'e a 12 year old "shredder kid" my apologies, but please keep your in-store volume lower.

-Now, even when making your own patch, there's going to be challenges getting unity (or close to it ) when making changes to the patches.  This is a primordial source of frustration for me personally.  I start building a patch, get a nice clean going, add a gain pedal and it's like 20 db's louder ! What !? First of all- STAY CALM - this is easy to deal with if you follow a basic methodology of building yourself a template or "base patch" first, then copying it to the other banks.

- Remember too that there's actual volume, and there's perceived volume. Psychoacoustics are real, so doing things like measuring with a decibal meter doesn't help as much as using your ear carefully - assuming your ear is judicial enough.  Even a sublte EQ adjustment can change the perceived volume, particularly when working with a full band.

-Also, this is a multi-input, multi-output system. Different settings like the "line/amp" swich, the various settings for the 2 inputs will all make a difference in sound. Yes, there are loads and loads of settings and tweaks.  At first blush it's overwhelming, but relax, take your time, and it will all start making sense.  This is a community Support forum: It's a great place to ask quick questions for quick answers, but a bad place to get a deep understanding and education.  With some googling, you'll find several blogs that provide deep insight into the various settings, best practices (like the "4 Cable Method"), etc.

- I remember it took me quite a while to get used to this thing.  When I started using it, there wasn't quite the amount of online resources that there are now, and I had to do a lot of experimentation myself.  At first, honestly, I hated it.  The pedals all sounded like crap, the volume disparity was an impossibility (and is still a large source of frustration, frankly). But with time I tweaked and got it sounding better. I started using it at rehearsals, tweaked some more. Eventually I built up enough confidence in it to use it on a gig, but then went back to my pedals.  Then I'd try the digital again, back to pedals.  Eventually I decided I *really* wanted this POD thing to work for me, so I took out a couple of my pedal boards, and wired up probably a (expensive) collection of pedals including some classics. I put them on an A/B switch with the Line 6, and tweaked and tweaked until the two were indiscernable, and that's when it hit me:

- Defaults suck.  All defaults suck, on every digital music device I own. My Boss unit ? the defaults suck.They suck less than the Line 6 ones, but they still suck.  The defaults on my synthesizer ? Suck.   I had proven to myself that I can make my Line 6 sound like a collection of pedals with some tweaking, proof to me that:

-The POD will sound as good as you make it.  Your ear, your experience, your preference -> your sound.  There's no "sound awesome" button on it, but the potential is absolutely there waiting to be realized.  The interwebs are full of examples of amazing sounding guitar played through an HD 500.  Plenty of folks gig with it, plenty of folks record with it (guilty of both) and I'm guessing the majority of folks who disparage it haven't taken the  time to realize it's potential.  I'm sitting here telling you I gig this thing on a regular basis.

Now, full disclosure: I do still occasionally take a few analog pedals out with me.  Some have a magical element I can't reproduce, some aren't represented in the POD (like my POG2), and some just sound waaaay too unique on their own, and it's just easier to bring them when I want that sound, than try to reproduce it (like a certain fassel based wah I have that's just crazy phonetic sounding). But I increasingly evangelize digital to my player buddies for a variety of reasons:

- Analogue pedals can be notoriously unreliable in a working live scenario.  Each pedal has 1 power connection and two 1/4 connections, and two 1/4 cables just waiting to go bad.  Oh, and all those pots ?  I can't tell you how much time I've spent over the years cleaning pots, cleaning cable connections, repairing cables. My POD hd has all of the unreliable connections of a SINGLE pedal, but offers me the sound of my entire pedalboard. Ever accidentally knock your pedal with your foot and have it crackle ? or cutout ? It happens all the time, way more often than you would suspect.  ESPECIALLY during outdoor gigs ( at least to me)

- Setup time.  Even with a good pedal board, stuff gets bumped,knobs get moved, a cable gets disconnected.  Pedals need to be leveled, gains set to their desired places, etc. If you *don't* have a pedal board, now you're talking about individually plugging in a bunch or pedals.

-Saving your sound.   Speaks for itself.  Dial in during rehearsals, and replay on demand.  This is priceless to me.  Obviously  is pricesless to a lot of folks as the entire mixer console market more rapidly moves to digital.

-Playing direct.  I got to a gig once andmy amp had been damaged in transit.  No worries, I changed a few quick settings, threw an XLR into the POD HD, and gigged away.  Great benefit IMO. I had zero notice from anyone -not even the band (whom all had me clearly in their mon feeds) - literally noone knew or cared that I didn't have an amp.  It was so nice, no muss, no fuss, and sounded great.  I actually went ampless for a few months after that and basked in the glory of Less Crap To Haul.

So yeah, the default patches may have volume issues.  When you start building your own patches, you're going to have volume issues too - you'll learn easily enough how to work around those though.  I wouldn't jump to conclusions just yet, or get buyers remorse though.   It's a great piece of kit that you'll probably eventually love. It DOES have its warts like any gear, and you will find legitimate frustrations, but I wouldn't let the default patches be one. I would start playing with it, google, read, learn, and figure out how to make it yours.  Don't play default patches, OWN THAT BOARD !

 



 

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Hey Matt,

 

I must say that your response was way beyond my hopes of what to expect for answers...

i Can't tell you how much I appreciated that .....

Somebody should really make that wonderful piece you wrote into a permanent sticky.

Absolutely enjoyed it  .... and I can't even begin to thank you enough....

 

cheers !!  :D  :lol:  :rolleyes:  B)  

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Glad to hear that - I was worried it was too much, but as a brand new purchaser I figured you were full of FUD (Fear, Uncertaintly and Doubt) and could use some of the bigger picture. You will probably end up very happy with your POD.  You will most certainly end up spending lots of time playing with it ;)

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Hello Matt,

 

Thanks for your awesome post!  I wonder if you (or other forum readers) have time to shed some insight on a volume problem I'm having between my HD500X presets and my DT25 head?

 

Quick background... I've played for 25 years and recently transitioned to 2/3 of the dream rig from a Mesa/Lexicon rack system and 15 years of rack gear programming/tweaking woes.  Using HD Edit software has been a blast!  Using the HD500X & DT25 I've been extremely happy with the models/presets I've been able to build from scratch (yep the factory presets are terrible) and do understand that different amp/preamp models have differing volume levels.

 

Config:  HD500X connected to the DT25 head via L6 link.  Love how clean & dead simple this connection is!  The L6 Link Audio (Setup Menu 9 of 10) set to Left/Right for the DT25 so the DT25 gets the full audio chain of the HD500X.  I've created the patches at a loud volume, the same approximate volume I'd use to play with my loud drummer.  I did this because I know there is a massive difference in the way a patch sounds at bedroom volume vs. stage volume.  I want the patches to sound great at stage volume.  I run my DT25 master at 12 o'clock and my HD500X master (non-programmable) at max.

 

Issue:  I'm attempting to achieve close to the same perceived volume level between patches while maintaining the tonal integrity of each patch.  I attempted to locate a low volume patch, then lower the loud patches to match the low volume patch's volume.  The problem is that if I use the HD500X's mixer for this, it changes the volume fed to the post section effects of the chain.  It also changes the tone of patch's gain (meaning distortion amount, not electrical measured gain volume).

 

For example, I have a VH style patch that uses the Plexi 59 preamp model with all dials on 10, including channel volume.  Of course, this is a very loud patch.  If I lower its volume via the mixer, it loses its crunch and screws up the post effects levels.  If I lower the channel volume, it loses its crunch too.

 

Another alternate example would be a patch that uses the AC30 preamp model.  This is a low volume patch where if I increase the mixer or channel volume, the amp starts to be overly crunchy for the clean/chimey type of patch that it is.

 

The main concern I have is that the grit/crunch/distortion/feel characteristics of each patch change significantly when I attempt to normalize volume levels via the mixer or channel volume.

 

I was thinking I would perhaps put a flat EQ at the end of each patch's chain to try to adjust the patch volume via EQ output gain instead of using the mixer or channel volume.  Haven't tried this yet, it might yield the same issue?

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts you might have on this.  Much appreciated!

 

Russ

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I play for fun as well and one of the first things I did when I got my HD500X was to go through all the presets, using a decibel app on my phone, and level out the volumes.  Then I started tweaking the patches from there as well as downloading additional ones.

 

The factory patches for the Vetta II were pretty good whereas the original patches for the HD500X pretty much suck.  Some of the patches I've found on Custom Tone are awesome though.

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Hi DarrellM5, thanks for your reply.  Would you please elaborate on how your level out the volumes between patches?  I use a decibel meter too, in addition to my ears for percieved volume.  Thanks!

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Seeing as how we're all kind of getting into it here .....

Is there any way to make the window display what patch and channel you are on in big numbers .....

you know .. like most gear has .... with just a great big  old   1B  or 14D    etc....

I can't even see that little writing on the unless i pout it right in front of me on the desk ...

How do you guys play like that at a ive gig when it's way down there on the floor...

How the heck do you guys even know what channel and patch you're using ....

You'd  have to have 20/10 vision to read that screen standing up !! :P

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Hi bobwilken, it should work to tap the "View" button repeatedly until you see the huge patch number.

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Hi bobwilken, it should work to tap the "View" button repeatedly until you see the huge patch number.

oh yeah , much better !!

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Great!

it's always those  little  things that can make such a  big  difference - HA !!

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for me this is the hardest thing to get in the pod, balancing the volume between the patches, I have used pod for 5 years and do gigs every weekend, even today I have to adjust my volume in all gigs, never ends, it is very tiring. I Use A jTv and in one bank, my main, I use 1 clean(strat2-tweed), 2 Acoustic, 3 Plexi 1959(lester 1 )and 4 solo( lester 1 /plexi and more drive and volume

 

it is very hard to find the balance, each gig changes everthing

 

I use studio eq as a volume pedal, let the flat frequencies and set up the gain it in the expression pedal. this works for me because it does not change the tone, just volume and this way I can get ,more easily the balance between the differents patches e and models on jtv

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It's frustrating for sure.

Say you have a great sounding tone with sweet reverb and delay and you change from the Soldano Crunch to the TreadPlate... now you have to spend 10 minutes adjusting the Gain, Volumes, Bass, Mid, Treb, Pres, AMP and CAB parameters and even the mic and cabinet type to get something close.

 

When they modeled these AMPs, I can't fathom why they didn't set them all at near the same (or within 3dB) level. :huh:

 

for me this is the hardest thing to get in the pod, balancing the volume between the patches...

 

it is very hard to find the balance, each gig changes everything.

 

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I've used 2 different methods.  Originally I was adjusting the volume using the sliders on the Mixer screen in the HD Edit software.  Lately I've just been using the volume knob on the HD500X to adjust the amp volume within the patch.  All of my patches are very similar in volume now.

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Were the XTs and X3 presets this bad , or is it just the HD series and HDX that are so inconsistent between patches ?

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OK sounds good, thanks DarrellM5.  My experience with adjusting the volume knob was that it significantly affected the crunch/distortion/feel of the patch.  I may need to do some more experimenting with that though.

 

I did some more research and found another idea that might work nicely.  Since most of my patches have one amp/preamp in mono, I'm going to place ALL post effects in the Amp A path after the amp.  Doing this allows the Mixer to be placed at the very END of the chain and therefore volume levels can be adjusted via the mixer without affecting the post effect input levels.  Then, in the mixer, mute the B channel and pan the A channel to center.

 

Using the mixer instead of a flat studio EQ would also save some DSP.  Hope this works!

 

In another thread, one of the experts recommended a valuable, VERY in-depth website dedicated to the POD HD series.  MUCH more detailed than the Line 6 HD advanced manual.  Please check it out here:  http://foobazaar.com/podhd/toneGuide/

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I have a volume control linked to Exp 2 at the end of each of my patches.

 

It is very low DSP and neutral to tone, but I can set min and max levels for the pedal movement on each patch to level them, and then when live with the inevitable variation in band volume levels I can adjust things on the fly. Typically min is set to about half volume of max, so at no time will I get an embarrassing silence when I come in. 

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Could never understand how the DB monitor works, I tried it from app in phone. Played live and volume change was still there, until an Einstein on the board made sense with the issue is usually the EQ. Live some songs screamed out, the funk, the Chic style snappy. Frustrated that my Beatles patch also was very quiet, patch for Jovi disappeared in mix of drums, keys, bass. The Volume is important but EQ is equally too mate. When I hear them on their own the volume change is audible. Throw the band in and things make sense.

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I have a volume control linked to Exp 2 at the end of each of my patches.

 

It is very low DSP and neutral to tone, but I can set min and max levels for the pedal movement on each patch to level them, and then when live with the inevitable variation in band volume levels I can adjust things on the fly. Typically min is set to about half volume of max, so at no time will I get an embarrassing silence when I come in. 

Thanks Rewolf48, using a volume control at the end of the chain is a great idea too!  I'll give that a try the next opportunity I have to play at stage volume.

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I just looked around the Line6 website and noticed that even with all these issues and problems going on  that neither the software nor the firmware  seem to have been updated since last  September ...  so what's the deal ,  it seems the entire dream rig series has not gotten any love lately... all the efforts seem to be going into Amplifi , Apple-fi and Bluetooth. B)

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I just looked around the Line6 website and noticed that even with all these issues and problems going on  that neither the software nor the firmware  seem to have been updated since last  September ...  so what's the deal ,  it seems the entire dream rig series has not gotten any love lately... all the efforts seem to be going into Amplifi , Apple-fi and Bluetooth. B)

 

There was a firmware update for the HD500, HD Pro and Bean just within the last two weeks. Before that, there was one in May. Prior to that November. These haven't been huge updates. The most substantial was the one in November.

 

But as far your original issue with the volume differences between the presets, that's pretty much the same thing that happens with every multi-fx unit that's ever been made. You're dramatically changing the signal chain from one preset to another, so volume changes are part of that. The idea is, though, that you have to balance your presets to your liking.

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There was a firmware update for the HD500, HD Pro and Bean just within the last two weeks. Before that, there was one in May. Prior to that November. These haven't been huge updates. The most substantial was the one in November.

 

But as far your original issue with the volume differences between the presets, that's pretty much the same thing that happens with every multi-fx unit that's ever been made. You're dramatically changing the signal chain from one preset to another, so volume changes are part of that. The idea is, though, that you have to balance your presets to your liking.

Hi phil_m, thanks for weighing in.  Do you think our ideas for volume leveling methods are on the right track?  For example, putting a volume control block at the end of the chain, or flat EQ for leveling at the end of the chain, or mixer at the end of the chain (one amp/preamp patches).  Essentially, I'm looking to achieve similarly perceived volumes across patches while maintaining the tonal integrity of each patch.  Are there "best practices" for this?

 

I've read that the Volume knob on the HD500X is tone-independent, but I've found that is not the case when connected to a DT25 via L6 Link.  For me, the tone/grit/distortion/feel of a patch changes significantly if I adjust the Volume knob of a patch.  Have you experienced this?

 

Thanks in advance for your opinion!

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I first want to point out that theres no defending line 6's bad design decisions. There is no digital control that can be saved per patch that affects the final volume level of the patch. Ie post all effects. Your only option is to use an eq or volume pedal effect at the very end of your chain which means you just lost one of your 8 precious fx slots for tone neutral patch volume!

 

Rewolf has the best idea here - it will effectively level your patches by attenuating only so no Chance of clipping but also give you wiggle room in a live context.

 

We all understand that digital patches CAN vary widely from one to another. A good design would understand that players generally want level volumes across patches and try to get all the amps and effects to have roughly the same output at default settings.

 

Combine this with how easy it is to acheive digital clipping, clip effects like eq's that you dont intend to clip, and the absence of clip meters, you've got a very difficult unit to deal with.

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To clarify my first paragraph, the mixer can be placed at the end of the chain but theres often good reasons not to. If you are running a single amp patch like russ, its best to do as he said above and put EVERYTHING in path A. All lines in hd edit and the pod's display are stereo signals, so you dont lose stereo fx. Just be aware that any mono fx and the amp models will mix stereo down to mono before processing so keep stereo fx towards the end of the chain

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Also russ contacted me by email so I wanted to share my response in case it helps others

 

I read your post but not the entire thread. My initial conclusion is that some of that crunch you are describing that gets altered as you adjust volume via the mixer is post effects clipping. It would probably sound much worse if it wasnt running through your real tube amp and real speaker cab. In any case, if you do like that tone, I think the only way to preserve it would be to attenuate the volume level at the end of your chain, rather than the mixer. I would NOT use an eq effect to do this. They are notoriously easy to clip from high input levels and can even clip "internally" if you are boosting frequency bands or the overall mix level. I would instead use a volume pedal effect. Just be sure to turn off expression pedal control, then you can tweak the effect's attenuation level inside hd edit or directly tweaking the effect using the pod's knobs. This is a much cleaner way to do it and it uses virtually no dsp although I see you have the 500x which probably doesnt hit dsp issues.

 

 

Another thing to keep in mind is the pods digital signal chain can also be digitally clipped pretty easily. Channel volume is the main culprit. I try to keep it around 50%. I never get anywhere close to 100% unless im doing something crazy in that patch. Its usually easier to rely on distortion effects as well as the modeled preamp and power amp distortion to get all your distortion tone. Then you have much more flexibility with adjusting levels. If youre using digital clipping or other unorthodox means to get your distortion, you will be left to LOTS of trial and error to adjust levels while retaining tone.

 

 

A good effect that can approximate the digital ish clipping but isnt going to get hosed by changing volume is the vintage mic pre. Of course its input level does matter but can be conpensated with the gain control and it has its own output control to deal with levels without impacting tone.

 

 

Another good suggestion is to rethink some of your patches taking into account how easy it is to clip eqs. It can make it a nightmare to keep consistent tone while adjusting levels. I basically try to keep my levels as low as possible inside the pods digital chain and boost towards the end, if possible.

 

 

Theres lots of info on digital clipping in my guide and a good step by step method to find exactly where it occurs in the chain. Usually I approach the topic from the viewpoint that im trying to eliminate it, not keep it consistent.

 

 

Anyway, I hope that helps some. I know exactly how frustrating this kind of thing is.

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Hello Matt,

 

Thanks for your awesome post!  I wonder if you (or other forum readers) have time to shed some insight on a volume problem I'm having between my HD500X presets and my DT25 head?

 

Quick background... I've played for 25 years and recently transitioned to 2/3 of the dream rig from a Mesa/Lexicon rack system and 15 years of rack gear programming/tweaking woes.  Using HD Edit software has been a blast!  Using the HD500X & DT25 I've been extremely happy with the models/presets I've been able to build from scratch (yep the factory presets are terrible) and do understand that different amp/preamp models have differing volume levels.

 

Config:  HD500X connected to the DT25 head via L6 link.  Love how clean & dead simple this connection is!  The L6 Link Audio (Setup Menu 9 of 10) set to Left/Right for the DT25 so the DT25 gets the full audio chain of the HD500X.  I've created the patches at a loud volume, the same approximate volume I'd use to play with my loud drummer.  I did this because I know there is a massive difference in the way a patch sounds at bedroom volume vs. stage volume.  I want the patches to sound great at stage volume.  I run my DT25 master at 12 o'clock and my HD500X master (non-programmable) at max.

 

Issue:  I'm attempting to achieve close to the same perceived volume level between patches while maintaining the tonal integrity of each patch.  I attempted to locate a low volume patch, then lower the loud patches to match the low volume patch's volume.  The problem is that if I use the HD500X's mixer for this, it changes the volume fed to the post section effects of the chain.  It also changes the tone of patch's gain (meaning distortion amount, not electrical measured gain volume).

 

For example, I have a VH style patch that uses the Plexi 59 preamp model with all dials on 10, including channel volume.  Of course, this is a very loud patch.  If I lower its volume via the mixer, it loses its crunch and screws up the post effects levels.  If I lower the channel volume, it loses its crunch too.

 

Another alternate example would be a patch that uses the AC30 preamp model.  This is a low volume patch where if I increase the mixer or channel volume, the amp starts to be overly crunchy for the clean/chimey type of patch that it is.

 

The main concern I have is that the grit/crunch/distortion/feel characteristics of each patch change significantly when I attempt to normalize volume levels via the mixer or channel volume.

 

I was thinking I would perhaps put a flat EQ at the end of each patch's chain to try to adjust the patch volume via EQ output gain instead of using the mixer or channel volume.  Haven't tried this yet, it might yield the same issue?

 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts you might have on this.  Much appreciated!

 

Russ

 

Hello Russ,

 

Sorry for the delays, I've been woodshedding.  You brought up a technical aspect I hadn't thought of - that adjusting the mixer volume affects any post-mixer effects, and that it can even affect the AMP drive.  I hadn't come across that, because rather early on I gave up on multiple patches (EXACTLY for the volume reason) and now use it exclusively in "pedalboard" mode like an M13.

 

It seems like meambobbo is helping you, can't wait to read his tips.  I imagine that volume disparity is the number one frustration of users, and I a bit disheartened that it hasn't been addressed. I've been buggering with the volume levels of my one (1 ! ) patch all nice as I try new pedals and gain structures.

 

Good luck !

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...Anyway, I hope that helps some. I know exactly how frustrating this kind of thing is....

bobbo, nice 2 hear from u again, hope u r doing fine.

 

now abt patch levelling, here is a simple method i use:

 

1. Simulate your live play list by recording small indicative parts of intros, rhythms and solos for all songs (use Audacity or other similar software).

 

2. Then, just by visual (and audio) inspection of the recorded track waveform, make level adjustments.

 

3. Repeat process until all levels acceptable.

 

Important: do not touch the HD500 master volume, set it at some initial position (say 11 o’clock) and leave it there during the cycle. Do all adjustments using all other level controls (eg amp ch vol, mixer level, studioEQs, etc).

 

General rule of thumb: solos must be some db (say 2 or 3, depending upon each song) higher than rhythm parts.

 

rgds/john

 

ps

cld u post an "executive" comparison summary betwn hd500 'n ur new digital modeller?

ur opinion wld be of much interest.

 
Attached image demonstrating clipping:
post-1403107-0-96108000-1383822256_thumb.png

 

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 I basically try to keep my levels as low as possible inside the pods digital chain and boost towards the end, if possible.

 

I though your method these days was to use a Kemper Profiling Amp  ;)

 

Welcome back although I expect the visit to be rather short

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Ha yes guys. Its been over a year since ive POWERED ON the Pod. That said I havent had much time to play guitar at all.

 

If you really want a kemper vs pod comparison I can post one, but I want to use clips to demonstrate so it might be a while. I definitely like it much better than the pod but its by no means a perfect piece of gear. And you still need a foot controller so...

 

Anyway, I actually have a new site thats a work in progress. I have to tighten up security and do backups before making it live so I cant share yet. Its nothing amazing but itll be a good resource for all guitarists. Keep rockin!

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Hello Russ,

 

Sorry for the delays, I've been woodshedding.  You brought up a technical aspect I hadn't thought of - that adjusting the mixer volume affects any post-mixer effects, and that it can even affect the AMP drive.  I hadn't come across that, because rather early on I gave up on multiple patches (EXACTLY for the volume reason) and now use it exclusively in "pedalboard" mode like an M13.

 

It seems like meambobbo is helping you, can't wait to read his tips.  I imagine that volume disparity is the number one frustration of users, and I a bit disheartened that it hasn't been addressed. I've been buggering with the volume levels of my one (1 ! ) patch all nice as I try new pedals and gain structures.

 

Good luck !

Matt, glad to hear you've been woodshedding!  I've read & re-read meambobbo's website, it's pretty incredible and must have taken him a long time to create & write.  I hope to have time on Tuesday to put some of his methods & advice into my patches.  I'm pretty happy with the patches I've created so far, but know that they could improve - especially in the gain staging/clipping aspect.

 

Definitely check out his patch audio samples, this guy knows what he's doing.  Most of his patches sound spot-on to me for rock & metal.  I'm going to try a few of his patches but will likely have limited success without major tweakage since his patches are for direct use, not through an external amp & cab like I will be using them.  Anyways, check out his patch audio samples HERE.

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Gigging my HD500 through my /Egnater Tweaker head/1x12 cab or Marshall JCM800 1x12 combo three times this weekend.Two different clubs inside and an outdoor gig on Sunday afternoon and I balance all my patches(20 or so) by playing my rig in my garage as loud as I can stand it.I have found no other way to do it.Adjusting the mixer levels slightly also helps balance them out but I notice with all these modellers as soon as you turn up and the band starts wailing your guitar will be swallowed if you don't tweak levels and e.q. at VOLUME before the gig. I also must add that the tones of the HD500 through FRFR are good but into a good tube amps power section they are amazing ! I don't even bother with 4 cable any more .I just run a cable from my HD into the effect return of any of my tube amps/add another cab if I need it and get busy! Really digging the HD500!

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Just wanted to mention the audio samples out there are not up to date with my patches. Everytime i made demo clips id notice a tweak later on and updated the patch. I never finished my tone demo page and have no plans to do so. Im not saying to not listen to them, only that the patches should sound better than the demos suggest

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Gigging my HD500 through my /Egnater Tweaker head/1x12 cab or Marshall JCM800 1x12 combo three times this weekend.Two different clubs inside and an outdoor gig on Sunday afternoon and I balance all my patches(20 or so) by playing my rig in my garage as loud as I can stand it.I have found no other way to do it.Adjusting the mixer levels slightly also helps balance them out but I notice with all these modellers as soon as you turn up and the band starts wailing your guitar will be swallowed if you don't tweak levels and e.q. at VOLUME before the gig. I also must add that the tones of the HD500 through FRFR are good but into a good tube amps power section they are amazing ! I don't even bother with 4 cable any more .I just run a cable from my HD into the effect return of any of my tube amps/add another cab if I need it and get busy! Really digging the HD500!

This is how I level my patches too, much to the chagrin of my wife, kids, dog, neighbors, photos on the walls, stuff on my garage shelves...

 

It really is the only way to get it right though. My wife sure gets tired of hearing me play the same riffs over and over to compare them lol.

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I don't even bother with 4 cable any more .I just run a cable from my HD into the effect return of any of my tube amps/add another cab if I need it and get busy! Really digging the HD500!

 

does plugging into the effects return of an amplifier bypass everything and just go straight into the power amp itself...

if so , would running it straight from there  into  a mixer and then out to FRFR speakers ...

give me what would amount to tubey sounding FRFR guitar signal ?

and  what routing what I use in the mixer to keep that sound pure ?

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I'm expecting a new HD500x on Friday, but I've played with them and owned several of the Kidney bean shaped PODs in the past.  As mentioned before, I think of think of the factory presets as a starting point to show what the unit can do.  With my old PODs and my Fender Mustang, most of the presets are way too effects heavy for me, so I just make my own with the GUI on my PC.  It's fun and you learn alot about the guitar signal chain by trying different effects, settings and placement of amps and effects.

 

Dennis

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