Tried this digital lark…..

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  • It's also fair to say that the issue highlighted by TheBigDipper has two sides. Adjusting breakup with your guitar volume and setting an amp to the edge of breakup are the hardest two things for modeling to achieve, BUT that isn't to say it's impossible. I would argue that my GX100 does it quite well, but even if it isn't to your satisfaction, a modeler gives you other options. You could simply switch seamlessly between presets, or you could Assign volume, gain, and any other parameter you want to the expression pedal and just use that instead of the guitar volume. I just don't see it as a big issue.
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  • TheBigDipperTheBigDipper Frets: 4829
    It's also fair to say that the issue highlighted by TheBigDipper has two sides. Adjusting breakup with your guitar volume and setting an amp to the edge of breakup are the hardest two things for modeling to achieve, BUT that isn't to say it's impossible. I would argue that my GX100 does it quite well, but even if it isn't to your satisfaction, a modeler gives you other options. You could simply switch seamlessly between presets, or you could Assign volume, gain, and any other parameter you want to the expression pedal and just use that instead of the guitar volume. I just don't see it as a big issue.
    All true. The closest I ever got was with a GT1000 and that involved setting up two amps in parallel paths, with some intelligence into the divider so it sent more signal to the breaking up amp when I wanted that. It was better than a single amp but still not as organic for me as a player. Let's not forget my first comment on this thread was about my lack of patience with the faff of a workflow that isn't needed at all with an amp.

    It's my issue, not the technology, but it's an issue all the same. I've been through the "go modeller" route 5 times in the past 10-15 years and know far more about Line 6 , Boss or Headrush than anyone who doesn't own any of it today should know! :-) 

    My current OE Deluxe61 solution (in effect an analogue solid state amp that doesn't amplify much) has just three controls to dial in. The gain (acting like a volume control on the non-master volume amp that it is) and the tone. Then, when I'm happy with the sound I'm getting and the way it responds to my playing, pickup choice or the input from a boost pedal,  just adjust the output control to make it send that out at unity gain or thereabouts and feed the H90. But that pedalboard takes up four times the floor area of a GT1000 (2x the dimensions in each direction) and weighs more than I'd like. 

    FWIW, I'd like to praise the Laney LFR 112 speaker I use when I'm going direct. Running in FRFR mode, I'm getting a great sound "in the room" from my go direct board. It's not quite as 3D as the valve amps I own, but absolutely fine in the band mix - and 3D amp sounds can get lost in the band mix, too. I wonder how I would have liked it with the GT1000, but I didn't own it then. 

    I suspect it would make sense to try an FM3 and see how I get on with that. 


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  • BeexterBeexter Frets: 617

    I suspect it would make sense to try an FM3 and see how I get on with that. 


    I'd say, yes, it's worth trying. I find it reacts well to guitar volume and pickup changes so you can set it to edge of breakup and control things with guitar or a boost as you would with a real amp. As in the real world, some amps/ models do it better than others.

    For me, the way you amplify it is key to getting a tone you are happy with. For some folks, a power amp and regular cab is preferred. 
    The other way ( which widens the choice massively) is using a cab IR into an FRFR solution. If you like the Laney, the latter option would likely suit you. I've settled on a few York Audio IR's and run it through a Fender FR10 and am really pleased with how it all sounds.

    The thing with the FM3 is that it sounds pretty solid straight off the bat - the factory presets are a great starting point. There are two ways you can interact with amp models - the basic level gives access to the controls you would find on the real amp but you can also deep dive if you want to do stuff that would be more difficult on the real thing, such as change bias, valve types etc, etc. I've not needed to go down that rabbit hole but it's nice to have the option.

    Yes, there is a learning & discovery curve ( I found the Cooper Carter Masterclass well worth the price), but once you have settled on a couple of amps / cabs you like, it's just as straightforward as a real world amp.

    Personally, I find the modelling approach more practical & convenient, especially when dealing with non-master volume amps which can only do certain things at certain volumes.

    I haven't bought a single pedal since getting the FM3 and am confident that if I can't get a sound that I want, I'm the limitation, not the equipment.
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  • There's certainly a lot of messing around creating presets when you first get a unit, but I like to think of it as short term pain for long term gain. It's clearly not for everyone I suppose and like everything else, a compromise is required. At the moment, you're compromising space and with a modelling unit you sacrifice ease of use, certainly initially. Dave Murray from Iron Maiden recently switched to Fractal because it's easier and more consistent, but then he has a tech to do all the hard work in setting it up for him.
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  • bloodandtearsbloodandtears Frets: 1690
    Danny1969 said

     I'm not really sure what the advantage is. It's basically a case of using a £1000 modeller into a £300 PA speaker to make the same sounds you can get with a £400 amp and £200 worth of pedals. I think part of it is they enjoy the mucking around with settings and stuff and enjoy buying gear. And I can understand that. 


    For me, it's convenience. I don't disturb neighbours or other people in the house because I can use headphones; it takes up virtually no space at all; it weighs next to nothing; it's easy to record with; it sounds great at any volume. I find all this to be very convenient and while it takes a little while to dial in your tones, once that's done life is easy. I can pack up at home in no time, I can be set up for a gig in 5 minutes, and I haven't broken my back in-between. Moving to modeling isn't something I regret and I have zero desire to go back to valve amps. There are an increasing number of professional artists switching to digital and they're not doing it because it sounds awful.

    Laney LFR-112 and Helix for me... its all about the convenience to me ... and to be honest.. the punters have no idea what gear you are using.. only the sound they can hear..
    My trading feedback

    is it crazy how saying sentences backwards creates backwards sentences saying how crazy it is?

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  • Laney LFR-112 and Helix for me... its all about the convenience to me ... and to be honest.. the punters have no idea what gear you are using.. only the sound they can hear..
    Exactly! They neither know nor care what gear is in use, as long as it's loud enough and sounds OK. I started using a Laney IRT-X for monitoring and a DI to FOH and it worked great. The Laney FRFR stuff is really good and certainly not expensive.
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  • ZenRigsManZenRigsMan Frets: 18
    There's certainly a lot of messing around creating presets when you first get a unit, but I like to think of it as short term pain for long term gain. It's clearly not for everyone I suppose and like everything else, a compromise is required. At the moment, you're compromising space and with a modelling unit you sacrifice ease of use, certainly initially. Dave Murray from Iron Maiden recently switched to Fractal because it's easier and more consistent, but then he has a tech to do all the hard work in setting it up for him.
    And, to be fair, his tech has done a great job of keeping his rig and preset REALLY clean and simple. Nothing complicated and it sounds immense.
    I manage Fractal Audio distributor G66 UK (official distributor of Fractal Audio products in the UK) and am also the guy behind a little accessory company called ZenRigs. I also provide private Fractal related training and teach guitar. Hello!
    http://www.g66.eu/   http://www.zenrigs.com/
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  • ZenRigsManZenRigsMan Frets: 18
    edited April 3

    I have a Laney LFR-112 here, using with the Axe-FX III, FM9 and FM3 and it is a seriously fun beast of a speaker to play through. Great thump and LOUD! I've tried a lot of FRFR over the years - the Laney is easily up there as one of the best - and such great value too.
    I manage Fractal Audio distributor G66 UK (official distributor of Fractal Audio products in the UK) and am also the guy behind a little accessory company called ZenRigs. I also provide private Fractal related training and teach guitar. Hello!
    http://www.g66.eu/   http://www.zenrigs.com/
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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 22330
    Danny1969 said:

    A couple of my mates use modellers and PA cabs but I'm not really sure what the advantage is. It's basically a case of using a £1000 modeller into a £300 PA speaker to make the same sounds you can get with a £400 amp and £200 worth of pedals. I think part of it is they enjoy the mucking around with settings and stuff and enjoy buying gear. And I can understand that. 


    In some cases, there may be no advantage. For me, there is. It's £700 for a JC-40 amp before any pedals. I like a lot of shoegazey shit. Once you start fucking about with power supplies, pedalboards, patch cables etc, and add that to the cost of pedals, then a £600 Stomp XL, £20 for a Hotone Ampero Switch, and a £300 PA speaker would make a lot more sense. 




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  • paulmapp8306paulmapp8306 Frets: 850
    edited April 6
    I got into the digital things way back - 2008, and did so because the unit (the original Axe-FX) gave me the tools to taylor the sound to what I wanted - the one I could hear in my head.    I hadnt ever found an amp that did that - there was always something niggling.  either clean was good ad drive wasnt, or vica versa - or a feq I couldn't dial in or out.  

    The digital solution allowed me to fine tune how the amp model reacted.

    It also helped that I always used Rack FX - and my Tc G-Maj had developed a fault - so I was looking for a new rack muti FX unit anyway.

    i have however, never REALLY gelled with the FRF full on digital solution with the exception of for recording.   It has its place live opto of course, for the FOH sound.  HOWEVER, for personal monitoring, noodling, playing for pleasure - I have ALWAYS stuck with a real cab and a power amp.

    With lesser modellers (and that includes the first generation Fractal gear) I needed to use a VALVE power amp to truly get things working.  In my case a VHT 2:502.   As things evolved SS power amps became useable - the Matrix stuff, and lately the Seymore duncan powerstage.  I have recently moved back top a valve PA in the Fryette POwer  Station - mainly as Im looking at a little valve combo just to have and I would likely need an attenuator for home use - and the PS can do that as well as power my Axe-FX.  

    Despite my love of the fractal gear, and the benefits digital DOES bring, I havent really liked the Headrush stuff - or the Helix - or even the Kemper (though that is more to do with workflow - going back to my first comment about not finding a real amp that I fuilly liked and theFractal allowing me to fine tune to taste - the Kempres dont do that). 

    I have also fine tuned to the point I have pretty much a traditional workflow.  I have 2 patches - thats it.  One based on a nice clean amp - with 4 drive models, and some FX - and the other based on valve amp distortion, with a boost level and FX.  I havent really tinkered with that for 2 years - and then it was due to moving from the AFX2 to the AFX3. My previous AFX2 setup hadnt been tinkered with for 4 years or so. 

    More modern digital AMPS are tuned for that digital/power amp into speaker methodology - and I genuinely feel they are better than the cheaper NON AMP BASED digital modelling solutions when it comes to noodling and the live feel, and do feel if you have an amp you like -t hen a digital solution isnt going to improve that really.   It adds flexibility is all.  
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  • chrisj1602chrisj1602 Frets: 4018
    I’ve had a few half arsed attempts at going digital, HX Stomp,
    Helix LT, but I’ve always clung on to using an amp. I’m thinking of trying it properly and going direct.

    I know It can work for me, I like the Helix stuff and know how to use it. I just like amps and pedals so I need to get over that!  I’m honestly sick of carrying stuff too.
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  • NelsonPNelsonP Frets: 3409
    edited May 18
    The main thing for me is that all of the digital solutions lack the dynamics of a good valve amp.

    The basic tone is now very good, but they sit in the mix in a mushy, flat kind of way, and somehow lack the feel and organic nature of an amp and pedals.

    They are great for home use - great tone at low volume, and for recording (hard to tell the difference when listening back).

    But for playing with others live, I still much prefer an amp.

    Having said that....
    https://guitar.com/news/music-news/jim-root-is-using-neural-dsp-quad-cortex-live-slipknot/
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