Helix. Yes, I'm late to the party. Amazed in general and then v2.80.0

Discussion in 'Modeling Amps, Plugins and Apps' started by Bob Womack, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    842
    Joined:
    May 28, 2016
    Location:
    Between Clever and Stupid
    Last month I reviewed a fifty-three year-old tube amp on my site. This week I'm working with the Line 6 Helix. I'm not new to modeling - I'm on my third generation of modeler, having used them in the studio since about 2005. For several years I've been using a Line6 HD500X.

    So, I thought was about time to upgrade to Helix. I bought a pristine used one and it was delivered Thursday, the day Line6 delivered the v2.80.0 software update. I played with it most of that night rather than updating it and was pretty amazed. Yesterday I updated the unit and was further impressed. If you read and follow the directions there's a string chance you'll get through unscathed.

    The "Heir Apparent" model (Prince of Tone) is great. Some of the new amp models are amazing. The level of detail in the sounds is amazing.

    Will I be ditching the tube amps? Hmmm... Not yet. Is it the smell? The pilot lights?

    Bob
     
    LeicaBoss, ftbtx and Rayf_Brogan like this.
  2. blowtorch

    blowtorch Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    26,301
    Joined:
    May 2, 2003
    Location:
    Wisco
    I dig Helix too
     
  3. codamedia

    codamedia Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    4,475
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2009
    Location:
    Western Canada
    Late to the Party? Digital modeling is just barely coming of age with the Fractal,Kemper, Helix.... the fact that you have been using it for a few generations makes you "cutting edge", not "late to the party. (IMO of course :D)

    It's likely the "amp in the room" tone you crave. Some people have a really hard time giving that up.

    I'm a satisfied Helix user myself these days.... but I've been dabbling with sims/modelling since the original Sans Amp in the early 90's. For the record.... since I got my Helix last November my SF Vibrolux and AC30 have not been out of storage!
     
    rich815 likes this.
  4. Smokin OP

    Smokin OP Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

    Age:
    59
    Posts:
    878
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Location:
    Leesburg, GA
    Also a Helix user & fan. I've been using Line 6 modelers for several years. Only had a chance to try the new amps & drive pedals for a little bit Friday night but love to new additions. I mostly use some sort of Vox/Matchless amp or Deluxe/Twin sims but will setup for new presest soon, hopefully will have time today. And I also have some nice old amps that I haven't used in a while & need to move.
     
  5. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,373
    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2009
    Location:
    Land of the Long White Cloud
    I am pretty pleased with the Helix too. I use it as a pedal board in to my range of 5w amps (or there abouts...DsL5, Class 5, AC4C1-12, SL5, Pro Junior etc.) and then the modelling for recording and night practice. Just spent most of the day recording direct a cover of All RIght Now.

    I had a Flextone II when they came out and have always worked with modellers this way, retaining the best of both worlds IMO. It nicely superceded the RP1000 (though I have just ordered an RP360 on ebay, I missed the Digitech sounds :) especially the Univibe they have)

    Thanks for the heads up on 2.80. I gave up watching the gear page thread couple of weeks ago...too many pages!
     
  6. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    842
    Joined:
    May 28, 2016
    Location:
    Between Clever and Stupid
    Glad to help! Those threads can really get down in the weeds.

    Bob
     
  7. Rayf_Brogan

    Rayf_Brogan Tele-Meister

    Age:
    38
    Posts:
    352
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2017
    Location:
    Washington
    Yeah, I think the cabinet/playback options will be the next real breakthrough. The amp modeling of this generation is so good but playing exclusively through headphones or monitors is where the tradeoff is.

    I was thinking of getting the new Fractal FM3 whenever that comes out, but the new amp models in the Helix sound amazing. I think I might just put the money towards a power amp and use my actual amplifiers as speaker cabs for the Helix. Assuming I can get a power amp that doesnt color the tone much, that should address the amp in the room problem.
     
  8. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    14,300
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    Line6’s Powercabs address the AITR thing quite well, I have a pair of them and love them.
     
    ftbtx and codamedia like this.
  9. Rayf_Brogan

    Rayf_Brogan Tele-Meister

    Age:
    38
    Posts:
    352
    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2017
    Location:
    Washington
    I've been kicking the can on them. How do they handle open back cabs like a Fender? If there isn't much difference I may go for the 2x12 that's coming out.
     
  10. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    14,300
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    They’re not perfect for replicating the qualities of open-backed cabinets, but they still sound really good.
     
  11. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,378
    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2016
    Location:
    Midwest, USA
    I would suggest FRFR powered cabs with mfx/modelers for optimal tone shaping. It's like painting on a blank canvas using your mfx/modeler as your brush and all the simulators for preamp, cabs, mic choices and placements, etc as your colors. It made a big difference for me.

    I am currently using a Boss GT-100 going to a Headrush FRFR108. I tried the 112 but they were too huge for my use. I was so pleased with the results that I disposed all my amps giving me more space in my play room.

    [​IMG]

    Mfx and modelers sure has improved a lot these days!
     
    Rayf_Brogan likes this.
  12. ftbtx

    ftbtx Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    1,422
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2016
    Location:
    The west side of Texas
    Do you run them in stereo or just like a 2x12? I have a Helix with a Powercab Plus and am considering another.
     
  13. -Hawk-

    -Hawk- Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    3,050
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2015
    Location:
    IL, USA
    I’ve still got a couple of my tube amps, but have completely converted to the HX Stomp for both home and live use.

    The new 2.8 amps/OD’s are a great joy so far. Really like the Zen drive and the PoT. What’s funny is I’m just utilizing a tiny bit of what’s available in the update. So many workflow improvements that I’ve yet to explore. That’s one area that Helix does so well.

    I’d suggest looking at some of the Far-Field IR’s that have been discussed on TGP. Some of the discussion is a very technical (with some mixed in trolling), but I’ve found they improved my FrFr experience in a huge way.
     
  14. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    14,300
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    I run them in stereo.
     
    ftbtx likes this.
  15. Frodebro

    Frodebro Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    49
    Posts:
    14,300
    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Location:
    Seattle
    The Powercabs can be run as FRFR, they can be run as flat response with the high frequency driver disabled, they can load up to 128 IRs (the Plus model), and they have actual speaker modeling that negates the need for IRs, and all switchable via MIDI. I have tried most configurations, and right now I'm really digging on the Greenback speaker model with Marshall profiles in the Kemper.
     
    littlebadboy likes this.
  16. rxtech

    rxtech Tele-Holic

    Age:
    51
    Posts:
    512
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Location:
    central california
    Wow! I Remember that song! I had to give that a little bit of a listen just now. Where of all the years gone?
     
    blowtorch likes this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.