Axe_FX II Rigs, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Digital Modelling.

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Handsome_ChrisHandsome_Chris Frets: 3881
edited November 2014 in Amps
Does anyone know how Si is getting on with his Axe-FX II rig?
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  • digitalscreamdigitalscream Frets: 14186
    Last I saw, he was selling the lot over on Rob Chapman's forum...
    "Mains is ouchy if you get it up you" - Sporky
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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22400
    He's selling it. I don't think it is anything to do with not digging it, I think he just needs a cash injection or something.
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  • SporkySporky Frets: 15058
    This is one of those "wish I had two and a half grand spare" moments.

    Except I'd spend it on a laser cutter. So it's more a "wish I had five grand spare" moment. Except... gah.
    Every year, I grow half as pretty, and twice as drunk. 
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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22400
    ahaha. To be honest, I'm really not feeling desire. I've really gone off the Axe FX. After using Octatonics a couple of times (and it did sound amazing!) I realized that for what I would want, it would be using a sledgehammer to crack a walnut! If Tacoma ever went full-time, then maybe it'd be worth it. But for playing out of the back of dingy pubs or the occasional biggish venue, it's just mass overkill.

    I've heard some amazing sounds come out of the Pod HD that are just as good. Some of my favourite all-digital sounds on albums came from the Pod 2.0 and Pod XT, (like the tones on the first Tesseract album for instance) and I'm sure there are others out there that I'm just not aware are digital.

    So if I was going to go all digital, I'd either use a Pod or a Kemper. Kemper is a bit cheaper, and easier to use. imho/ymmv/my 2p, etc...
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  • SporkySporky Frets: 15058
    I loved the HD500 I tried, and to be fair even that is massively overkill for a bit of home noodling.
    Every year, I grow half as pretty, and twice as drunk. 
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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22400
    I thought the amps and cabs were a massive step above the older models. Loads of people online moaning about the cabs, but there really is nothing wrong with them.

    I have toyed with picking up one of the HD500X's but apparently the extra CPU isn't all that much. So I might wait to see what the next firmware brings.

    I have my Marshall, so when I had the HD500 it was for effects only, 4 cable method. My effects used to be entirely Line 6, but I got bored of them - they basically haven't improved them for over 4 years or something ridiculous like that. So for FX only, I didn't stick with the HD500 for long. I quite fancy trying the GT100 out for effects only. But I just bought a Zoom CDR!
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  • ddloopingddlooping Frets: 320
    Sporky said:
    I loved the HD500 I tried, and to be fair even that is massively overkill for a bit of home noodling.
    And with the HD500x out there are some bargains to be had. :)
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  • SporkySporky Frets: 15058
    Yeah - it's getting easier to justify it...

    I did find, though, that I'd start out making a nice just-breaking up sound, but two minutes later it was always face-melting brutal filth in a canyon. :D
    Every year, I grow half as pretty, and twice as drunk. 
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  • ddloopingddlooping Frets: 320
    Sporky said:
    Yeah - it's getting easier to justify it...

    I did find, though, that I'd start out making a nice just-breaking up sound, but two minutes later it was always face-melting brutal filth in a canyon. :D
    :D
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  • stonevibestonevibe Frets: 3472
    I bought an HD500 as I wanted a simple unit for the home, plus if I am gigging its just less to lug around. SOund wise its pretty good for what it costs.

    Plus its less cabling!

    Which is always a bonus
    How much does it weigh? & Does it play like butter?

    You can now read my insane guitar ramblings daily here http://www.gearnews.com

    https://www.instagram.com/jefstone/
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  • p90foolp90fool Frets: 11873
    Sporky;1742" said:
    Yeah - it's getting easier to justify it...



    I did find, though, that I'd start out making a nice just-breaking up sound, but two minutes later it was always face-melting brutal filth in a canyon. :D
    Yeah, I have to be very disciplined when I'm setting up patches, when I programmed my Zoom stuff for gigging I actually had my Marshall and Fender valve amps and a PA all running in a big room and spent hours constantly A-B-ing.

    It's amazing how short our memories for sound really are, just when you think you're there you go back to the real amp and realise you have way too much dirt or too much middle or whatever.
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  • TBH, its probably overkill for what I want too - even though Ive been using one for 6 years now.

    Thing is, mfor home playing (which is probably 80-90% of my time) and the odd recording its fantastic.  I still use a power amp and cab mostly (FRFR for recording via monitors obviously), but it gets great tones at home friendly volumes.  

    For band use its too much really for what I need, and If I could make do with a small valve combo and a couple of pedals, I really should go that way - HOWEVER, the home volume issues, plus the fact I always want the best I can afford - would mean a valve based rig would be just as costly if not more so (I would be looking at things like Suhr Badgers, DrZs or Carrs for instance - not small Fenders, Egnators and the like), so whats the choice really?

    Well its a top end valve amp, thats restricted to its own sound - which MAY have knock on effects if I change band and have restricted home applications (as well as no recording - though theres other ways of tackling that) - or the AFX rig thats really overkill, but is configurable to whatever band I play is - and sounds great at home.

    Now - IF I could persuade myself a small pick up and go amp, in the mid price range was OK - AND I needed either cash, or the AFX rig blew up and needed replacing anyway, I MAY go back to valves. For now though - much like many considering the switch the other way - its just not worth changing.

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  • p90fool said:


    It's amazing how short our memories for sound really are, just when you think you're there you go back to the real amp and realise you have way too much dirt or too much middle or whatever.
    So true - however, it depends what your trying to achieve.  If its nailing said amp sounds - then you need real world comparisons from time to time.  If however, your trying to get your own sound, then the AFX one (or whatever modeller you use) is probably closer to that than the real amp rig.
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  • Handsome_ChrisHandsome_Chris Frets: 3881
    edited August 2013
    Sporky said:
    Yeah - it's getting easier to justify it...

    I did find, though, that I'd start out making a nice just-breaking up sound, but two minutes later it was always face-melting brutal filth in a canyon. :D

    Not to hard to believe after the VH4 based soundscape you directed me in creating at Cos's Gearfest. :D
    http://i903.photobucket.com/albums/ac233/elastitude/Guitar stuff/Dumpster Problem/ScreenShot2013-08-04at104628_zps58834cbd.png
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  • Now - IF I could persuade myself a small pick up and go amp, in the mid price range was OK - AND I needed either cash, or the AFX rig blew up and needed replacing anyway, I MAY go back to valves.

    Hmmm, you're only saying that because you know that my AF2 died the other day.  :x
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21334
    Now - IF I could persuade myself a small pick up and go amp, in the mid price range was OK - AND I needed either cash, or the AFX rig blew up and needed replacing anyway, I MAY go back to valves.

    Hmmm, you're only saying that because you know that my AF2 died the other day.  :x
    Really? What happened.

    I'm just back from holiday and working through V11 firmware.
    WOW- big changes in the feel and warmth- it feels really great.

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  • SporkySporky Frets: 15058
    Not to hard to believe after the VH4 based soundscape you directed me in creating at Cos's Gearfest. :D

    That was awesome. So much GRARGH and so much reverb...
    Every year, I grow half as pretty, and twice as drunk. 
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  • Handsome_ChrisHandsome_Chris Frets: 3881
    edited August 2013
    octatonic said:
    Now - IF I could persuade myself a small pick up and go amp, in the mid price range was OK - AND I needed either cash, or the AFX rig blew up and needed replacing anyway, I MAY go back to valves.

    Hmmm, you're only saying that because you know that my AF2 died the other day.  :x
    Really? What happened.

    I'm just back from holiday and working through V11 firmware.
    WOW- big changes in the feel and warmth- it feels really great.
    Got down to the studio the other day, I am liking the Pro Tools btw, and the screen and LEDs lit up.  That's all she wrote.  Danny1969, of 2020 in Portsmouth, and I had it open found an empty socket and checked to see if anything had bounced out.  The socket is supposed to be empty until the EPROM Sussi has sent to me arrives.
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  • chrispy108chrispy108 Frets: 2333
    I think the main lesson from Si's thread is that you've gotta love tinkering to run something like the AxeFX.

    Even if you just run one main sound, it's a touch more work than just a valve amp.

    I think you either "get" multi-fx/modellers or you don't.
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  • There was also an issue of consistency.  When practicing adjust your settings as you would for live e.g. equipment settings, volume levels.  At rehearsal tweak your settings to sit in the mix.

    At lot of people get caught with firmware updates, they do it just before a rehearsal or worse a gig.  The firmware update can rejig your settings so much that there may be a major overhaul of presets required. I suppose it's like getting you amp and pedals modded - you wouldn't tweak those before going live.
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21334
    I think the main lesson from Si's thread is that you've gotta love tinkering to run something like the AxeFX.

    Even if you just run one main sound, it's a touch more work than just a valve amp.

    I think you either "get" multi-fx/modellers or you don't.
    For at-home playing- yes.

    This isn't my experience for recording.
    I'm working faster using the Axe FX than I ever did micing up amps.

    I still mic amps up from time to time but it is a novelty, rather than business as usual.

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  • ClarkyClarky Frets: 3077
    Sporks - should the itch of curiosity need a lil' scratch..
    give me a ping and you can come try my Axe-II out

    I reckon you'll quite enjoy it..
    play every note as if it were your first
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  • Handsome_ChrisHandsome_Chris Frets: 3881
    edited August 2013
    @Drew_fx, how can you say that you don't like the Fractal Axe-FX II?  The first track on your latest album is called Fractal World! :p
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  • Drew_TNBDDrew_TNBD Frets: 22400
    Didn't say I didn't like it!  8->
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  • I'm back in the land of the living. My lovely pre-amp is up and running again with version 11b firmware.
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21334
  • Cheers buddy

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  • Si_Si_ Frets: 382
    I'm here :)

    Still got the rig.... 
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  • Si_Si_ Frets: 382
    So.. an update on where I am..

    We had a few band problems so we had to cancel a few gigs unfortunately so not gigged my rig as much as I wanted to, however we did have 1 gig a few weeks ago which was great. I made a few slight changes to my main patch, changed from using a Friedman HBE to a JCM 800 Mod instead as I thought it was a lot clearer than the Friedman. I had changed my cab setup a bit for the gig before that one and hated it, I was using a gator amp case to raise it up from the ground but lost all the bass and it just sounded shrill so I went back to having my Cab on the floor vertically with the AxeFX sitting on top. This worked really well at the last gig and sounded great out front.. Yay! So all is good. 

    I do have the rig up for sale at the moment, and have had a LOT of interest, but so fat I've not sold it. in fact quite the opposite, I've expanded it with the addition of a Matrix Q12 cab. This just arrived this morning so I've not spent any time with it really but we'll see what happens when I do (Keep an eye on the classifieds :)). Initial impressions are that my patches are wank through the 12 and i need to start from scratch, especially if I'm using it live.. but it's very early days.

    I have to say that Andy and John at Matrix have been really helpful and I can't recommend them highly enough. Also a BIG thanks to Clarks for replying to all of my moaning PMs on the fractal forums and helping me out of the doldrums.

    So.. when's the next UK Axe fest :D

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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21334
    Si- download the Pete Thorn patches from the Fractal site.
    He nailed the tone I think you are going for.

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