Helios is here...

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by Wooley, Mar 20, 2008.

  1. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    Shannon Helios arrived today.
    Just put the battery in.
    More to come...
     
  2. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    It's a winner.
    Trust me, I wouldn't normally post anything about a pedal just 24 minutes after plugging in. I wouldn't insult you guys that way. But I can tell you right now where this is going.
    I can't get into nuance and detail that much yet, but I can tell you this: if you ever plug into a pedal (hopefully more than one in your time) and you can just hear the quality right away, and you know you're getting something good, that's the experience I just had with the Helios. I mean it literally took all of one quick run to appreciate the tone of this OD. And that was with the drive at 8 o'clock and the tone all the way down!!! :eek:
    I started running it through some of my signature riffs for my band's songs, and they all sounded delicious. Really gives some girth and warmth, even with the drive almost all the way down.
    As I dialed up the tone knob, I just continued to get great tone, and I could hear how rhythm-friendly this pedal was going to be. So I ran it through some easy chord progressions with a lot of hammer-on/pull-offs, double-stops, and quick arpeggios, and it handled everything just beautifully.
    Now, obviously, I'm not telling everyone they need to rush out and buy one of the last 14 of these he has, based on 20 minutes of playing. But I can tell you right now, this thing is gonna turn out to be a good one. A real good one.
    I'll share more as I get to play with it some more. Of course I will compare it to the Eternity and some other pedals for you when I get time to A/B them.
    More to come...
     
  3. anathema

    anathema Member

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  4. 12guitdown

    12guitdown Member

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    That means you have #26. I received mine the day before. #28.

    12 or less remain. They'll be gone by next week.

    I, also had the same experience as you. From the first note I knew it was a winner. And I'm not usually not super excited about getting new ods as I've gone through many.

    I'm gonna give mine a couple weeks before I post a review at HC. There are NO posts yet. Let's get em' up boys/girls.
     
  5. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    Exactly the experience I'm trying to convey. I've got, like, 30 overdrives sitting around in my room, and I've been through some really great things. I'll be honest, even the Eternity (which is now my primary OD) took longer than this to really shine for me. The last OD that stunned me right out of the box like this was the Catalinbread Silver Kiss.
     
  6. anathema

    anathema Member

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    between your review and the australian's review I put one on hold for payment on Sunday.

    I may be getting an OCD for my birthday (29 is never too old for cool birthday gifts!), so this and and OCD will have me set for quite a while...
     
  7. dmczern

    dmczern Member

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    I'm curious if anyone with a Helios and Timmy are going
    to choose one over the other to use/keep, and why.......just curious

    :munch
     
  8. 12guitdown

    12guitdown Member

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    Those are the two ODs currently on my board. They play very well together. Yet are completely different in their textures. Got versatility? Oh yeah!
    The OCD is a v1 and goes into the Helios. This sounds better to me, at least for my rig it does.
     
  9. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    Hopefully this weekend I will A/B the Helios with the following:

    Eternity RH (likely the closest)
    Eternity Burst
    CoT 50
    Catalinbread Silver Kiss
    Catalinbread Hyperpak
    Subdecay Liquid Sunshine
    Clark Gainster
    OCD
    Keeley-modded Blues Driver (so underrated)
    Foxrox Zim (insanely tough challenge)

    And just for fun, I will definitely A/B it with my old Shannon Distortion. :dude

    I will let y'all know how things go...
     
  10. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    Didn't have time to do the A/Bing as described above today, hopefully I'll get to some of it by Tuesday, at the latest.
    However, last night, in testing my new AM-modded DMM (see other thread), I used the Helios with the Drive at zero (about 7 o'clock or so), the tone at about 2 o'clock, and the volume at, say, 2. This is just a really, really nice pedal. With no gain on, it still absolutely rocks.
    Imagine turning on a pedal that just fattened up your natural sound, then turning it up 1/4-1/3 and having great rhythm and low-medium gain leads, turning it to halfway and getting very much into Eternity territory, and then still having the rest of the way to go (I have not been in that territory yet, so I don't know where it goes; I suspect into similar territory as the E when you turn it past noon, which I never do).
    That seems to be what I've gotten with the Helios.
     
  11. smawer

    smawer I like to play.

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    i used it to boost my JCM900 SLX with my LP Deluxe with mini humbuckers thismorning.
    probably the best marshall tone ive ever achieved.

    SOO MANY USES WITH THIS PEDAL !!

    the eternity sounded like compressed goup doing the same thing, and the timmy had way too much gain to keep everything articulate. i also couldnt get the eq just right with it. the helios just seemed to get me where i wanted to be easier.
     
  12. 12guitdown

    12guitdown Member

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    This pedal is awesome. I play P&W, lead and rhythm in the vein of Hillsong. Today (yesterday Easter), we played outdoors in a park, 6 of the local churches combined, 3 services with over a 1000+ attendance each service. Good sound system and the stage was nice and hot. The helios definitely held its own in terms of retaining its character and not getting lost in the mix. It has a nice sparkly voice and the knobs are set within one hour of high noon. The sun was beating down on my pedal board and this was one of the few effects I didn't have to shadow to see if it was on or off.
     
  13. BoB/335

    BoB/335 Member

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    So how do you get one?
     
  14. fendergeek

    fendergeek Member

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  15. fendergeek

    fendergeek Member

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  16. macmax77

    macmax77 Supporting Member

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    and the countdown starts
     
  17. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    You mean "until the honeymoon's over"?
    You may be right, that seems to happen with all pedals.
    Then again, this pedal is not really a surprise considering its source (everyone knows Eric Shannon made the most sought after phaser of modern pedal-making, and his other pedals were also excellent).
    And the pedals I'm putting it up against A/B style are no slouches.
    So, we'll see.
    For example, I have fallen in love (over the last three years) with the Catalinbread Silver Kiss, Catalinbread Hyperpak, the HBE DosMos, the ToneFactor Cream Pie Deluxe, the Subdecay Liquid Sunshine, and the Keeley-modded Blues Driver. I still love all of them.
    But the pedal that is on my board, is one that I did not fall in love with right away, but came to appreciate over time, the Eternity.
    So it should be interesting to see how this evolves.
     
  18. Axe_78th

    Axe_78th Member

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    I am in the exact same boat. In fact after I got my Eternity I almost sold it as I thought I wasn't going to use it. Now it's the only overdrive on my board.
     
  19. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    So here's where it stands now.
    After playing with the band today with just the Helios and my DMM, it shakes down like this:
    I'm going back to running to ODs. I'm gonna use the Helios for rhythm and very low gain (but bulked up higher volume) leads. I'm gonna use the Eternity for the rest of my leads. There is a small chance that I may throw the Catalinbread Silver Kiss back on the board as well, but I doubt it.
    The issue is that while the Helios can handle my low and medium (I don't use high) gain needs, it can't really do both. I can't get the phenomenal rhythm tone I'm getting out of the Helios just by turning down the volume knob on my guitar, and then turn it up for its beautiful lead tone. The pedal just won't work quite that way.
    Then again, neither does the Eternity. I can't get the great rhythm/low-gain tone out of the E, no matter what I do (if you think you can, then we are not talking about the same degree of low-gain), but I can approximate the great lead tone of the Helios. They both have just beautiful lead tone.
    So, while I can't use the E for rhythm quite the way I like to, and I can't use the Helios to do both rhythm and lead without changing the settings, if I use 'em both, I can cover a lot of ground (clean rhythm, boosted rhythm, boosted lead; dirty rhythm, medium-gain lead). That's really all I need for what I do.
    If our set list was longer, I would probably throw the Silver Kiss on there too, for variety. It's possible that between now and our next gig (three weeks), I'll feel like I can replace both of them with the Catalinbread Hyperpak, which covers the most ground of any OD I know. I suppose I could also use the CoT50, but I just don't like it that much for leads.
    Anyway, that's the latest update, hope this helps some of y'all.
     
  20. Wooley

    Wooley Member

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    Bumpity, bump, bump...
     

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