Fractal Audio's New FM3

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by LqdSndDist, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. mbenigni

    mbenigni Member

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    If he's talking 1-2 months to ship, there's no way he's still considering hardware changes.
     
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  2. gumtown

    gumtown Member

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    Using the FM3 as an outboard FuzzFace effect for your Helix seems a bit excessive/counter intuitive to me.
    But the Helix/FM3 interfacing/matching impedance would have not effect as both are not reactive like a set of guitar pickups, and the effects are after the A/D conversion.
     
  3. phil_m

    phil_m Supporting Member

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    The lower input impedance would still change the tone of your guitar, and it would change the signal being sent to the converter(s), so it's still going to have some effect.
     
  4. handyman

    handyman Member

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    No kidding. If you're 8 weeks from launch, much if not all of your initial run has already been manufactured.
     
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  5. Guitardave

    Guitardave Supporting Member

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    Input impedance is important, but you can mimic it with an eq block. On the Helix use the Mesa EQ and lower the first two sliders down a bit. You can use other types of EQ blocks if you prefer.

    The high end response and a slight volume drop is what I notice most when lowering impedance settings.

    And you can always take a bit off the guitar volume/tone pots. It's all going to be the same type of impact.

    There's so many ways to make things work with modeling if you know what effect/sound you are after.

    TRUST YOUR EARS
     
  6. Watt McCo

    Watt McCo Member

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    Same as any multiple D/A A/D conversions, but the input impedance effect is not going to be altered by it - that's baked into the signal that passes out of the analog input stage of the Helix stuff. But...as @MixMinisterMike noted if you're just looking for a variable input impedance option...there are far easier/cheaper ways to implement it (though you'd have to dial in/out on the fly rather than programming into snapshots/scenes).

    In general if you're looking for really, genuine fuzz face behavior...put a fuzz face style pedal in front of your FM3 (or Axe III, or any other digital modeling product). If you're satisfied with "pretty darn good fuzz face tone, if not perfect mimic of how t reacts to volume and tone knob adjustments" play with a fuzz model and an EQ block on the FM3, come up with some way to get the impedance to switch a useful way on Helix stuff, or get an Axe III that has an auto impedance that makes sense.
     
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  7. Mark Al

    Mark Al Member

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    If this is indeed an oversight, e.g. not due to some impossible constraint, perhaps there is a chance to back-fit a variable input-z in the units? Then, a delay of the product launch might be worth while.
     
  8. Yek

    Yek Member

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    Are you serious?

    Not an oversight. The AX8 doesn’t have it either and it’s not such a big deal at all. Even with variable impedance, modelers (any modeler) won’t respond the same to fuzzes as amps do, because there’s always a buffer / converter involved. Adapt and adjust.
     
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  9. Mark Al

    Mark Al Member

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    That's good for you, however, I respectively disagree.
     
  10. Guitardave

    Guitardave Supporting Member

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    You guys are talking about different things.

    @Yek is talking about a real fuzz pedal into the FM3 and you are talking about the value of variable impedance options on an effect block.
     
  11. gtr37

    gtr37 Member

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    The Ax3 has it and I can honestly say i have never touched it
    The New drive block sounds amazing and feels great
    No concern to me

    Perhaps we should ask Tito?
     
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  12. gtr37

    gtr37 Member

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    Yep the chassis is built overseas the firmware is then loaded up and tested atFAS
    I believe
    That what allows them to deliver quicker

    The AX3 waitlist was cleared much faster than the 2
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
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  13. Rayf

    Rayf Member

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    My plan was to use the FM3 as a supplement amp modeler and take advantage of the fractal reverbs. I never wanted to give up the Helix effects and UI. This seemed like the perfect solution. The last pedal I still regularly use is a bc109 fuzz that I was hoping the FM3 could replace. Not a requirement but would be nice to check out their fuzz face unit but at 1M impedance, not sure that would do what I want.
     
  14. yeky83

    yeky83 Member

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    Do you currently like the fuzz pedals on the Helix (which uses the variable input impedance)?
     
  15. gtr37

    gtr37 Member

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    Then the product is probably not for you and that cool
    The FM3 will do a lot of things but it cant /wont be a perfect fit for everyones requirements
    If Fuzz and impedance load are dealbreakers then it
    Good to find out now I would think ?
     
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  16. Watt McCo

    Watt McCo Member

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    I agree it's not a big deal, but...isn't the whole point of having the input impedance variable is so that the input stage of the modeler mimics that of the fuzz pedal, no? So the presence of the buffer/converter after the fact shouldn't be an issue if the fuzz is correctly modeled, unless there is another issue after the input stage.

    However, for those that are really looking for authentic fuzz face sounds, you're gonna have to pony up and use a pedal - read section 3 here and see that the input impedance varies with fuzz setting and is in all instances lower than the lowest input impedance in Helix: https://www.electrosmash.com/fuzz-face

    Some things are worth doing meticulously in the digital realm. A pedal whose behavior is temperature dependant, that a lot of people prefer to use powered by a battery...just bring the pedal with you authenticity is that important.
     
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  17. ejecta

    ejecta Supporting Member

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    I don’t notice it really happening to a large degree on my pedal boards that have a couple of digital pedals like H9’s, Strymon, HX FX, Meris etc on them into real amps. But then again I use a buffer and not sure when it come to A/D/A that would matter or not. Maybe the same would be the case for having a modeler in the loop of another modeler?
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
  18. Mark Al

    Mark Al Member

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    I use one of them to get fat/chewy override or lead tones. I do know that using Auto or 10K Input Z sounds and feels more right and expected than using 1M, which sounds down right weird, but again Fuzz is an extreme example here. However, even with a TS there is a discernable difference i.e. 1M make the TS feel unnaturally "tight/bright" for lack of better words... It all depends on how picky/familiar you are with those specific configs previously...

    We are not talking about good or bad tones here, which is subjective. The correct input Z would allow modeler to model real world scenarios more accurately. If you are happy with the tone with 1M Z into your drive/fuzz all the time, that's all good and perhaps there is no need to worry if it's real or not, and this would not be a concern for you. For me personally, it just throws a small wrinkle in the FM3 consideration, that's all.
     
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  19. handyman

    handyman Member

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    Right, if you want to model the stone age fuzzes perfectly you really need to be able to lower the input impedance. If this weren't a thing Fractal wouldn't have spent the money on the extra switching hardware to add variable input impedance to the Axe FX II and III.

    I'm not a huge fuzz guy, but when I REALLY have wanted to get this effect right with the AX8 I've just stuck my DOD Carcosa in front of it. Hard to get more real than a real fuzz!

    Fun fact: Brian May puts his Rangemaster clones on his guitar strap, before his wireless. A lot of his sound is working the volume knob, and the Rangemaster behaves very differently if you're just adjusting the amplitude of a buffered signal. Some times if you want to use stone age tech in the modern day, you've just got to use stone age tech.
     
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