Helix Stomp as a full rig?

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by jjaaam, Aug 10, 2019.

  1. Watt McCo

    Watt McCo Member

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    Baffle is clamped up to the cab with glue drying. Need to do some finish work tomorrow and make a grill cloth . . . something or other. Should have a thread on it late this week. Don't take many photos in-progress, so will just be finished product.
     
  2. dmock66

    dmock66 Member

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    Sounds awesome!
     
  3. smj

    smj Member

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    Ok, change delay to dropout. When you change presets, there is a (small but noticeable) signal dropout.

    Snapshots. I’m well aware of what they do and enjoy using them. There’s no dropout. But you have to use the same blocks... you can’t change even one of them between snapshots.

    So if my primary signal chain is:

    Boost, dhyna, trem, Amp/cab, tape delay, spring reverb

    If I still need another modulation effect and a different delay at some point in the song, I could swap mod for mod and delay for delay... but I could only do it with a preset change.... and that comes with a signal dropout.

    If presets could be loaded with no signal dropout, I could have as many effects programmed for a song as I need if I never need more than 6 at once. Each preset could either be the same signal chain with some tweaks... plus 5 different modulations and 4 different delays and reverbs rotating in and out of the chain.

    Sean Meredith-Jones
    www.seanmeredithjones.com
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2019 at 5:18 PM
  4. Digital Igloo

    Digital Igloo Member

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    Technically, it's 16 blocks max with Path 1A and 2A, but who wants 16 EQ or Gain blocks?
    At the risk of rabbit-holing this thread, note that Line 6 (and others) have a limited future if they design every product with the power user (or potential power user) in mind. Our goal is to grow the digital market into places where it's historically been dismissed, not endlessly preach to the choir.

    There's also something to be said for not overdelivering at launch. Can't improve something if everyone thinks it's perfect. Not that we expect to ever have that problem.
     
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  5. kdm1218

    kdm1218 Supporting Member

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    Not to be devils advocate, but what gear exists, analog or digital, that does what you are describing, aside from having however many individual pedals that have to be stomped one at a time?

    I’m sure @Digital Igloo could give a more precise explanation as to why the dropout happens processor wise, but to me it seems almost analogous to apps on your phone- they open up really quickly and can switch from one to another really quickly, but it’s not possible to be instantaneous because the processor has to have however many milliseconds to do what you’re asking of it.

    In reality, the closest thing to what you want is a full Floor with more blocks and footswitches.
     
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  6. Elric

    Elric Member

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    That’s fair and TBH, obvious. Most here understand you are designing to a larger market than TGP gear junkies for many items. It’s clearly a huge hit and rightfully so.

    That said it is a shame this unit is not deep enough for some of us in its current state since it has the horsepower. Like a deep edit mode or something.

    Fingers crossed. Mine’s not on eBay just yet because I am an optimist here. The recent track record has been promising for sure.
     
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  7. smj

    smj Member

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    Yes you’re right on all accounts. Two things though:

    1) If there was at least a direct/dry signal as a buffer, that would help. But currently the whole signal gets cut.

    2) To your last point... yes I understand the helix floor does all this. But it’s not small. Sometimes I need small... that’s the main reason I bought the stomp. I have a pedalboard w/cab sim on-board and it sounds good and I can have as many things on as I want... but it’s about the same size as a helix floor.

    So we’re back to block limit. If the block limit can be increased that helps a lot.

    Music is my full time gig so I know I’m in the minority. I also get that L6 has good business sense and part of the rationale for handicapping it is business based as Digital Igloo mentioned.

    At some point I may build my own Stomp “dock”... a small board with one or two pedals to offload the dsp crunch/snap limitations when I really need it. I could live with that.

    Sean Meredith-Jones
    www.seanmeredithjones.com
     
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  8. kdm1218

    kdm1218 Supporting Member

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    This is what I’ve settled on as well. I always have a compressor so that’s a Wampler Mini Ego to save a block. Then have a MXR Sugar Drive even though I really like the Minotaur, cause there’s a block. Then I can play with 6 for my amp/cab, mod, delay, and reverb and cover a lot that way. I have an aux and a DMC Micro and that lets me do a lot. I have a VP and my wireless receiver on there, but could do without those if I had to.
     
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  9. jdroost

    jdroost Member

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    My digitech 2101 with the 2nd s-disc has been doing this since the early 90s... 100% seamless patch change. Heck,you could even adjust ramp time and spillover between the two patches.
    Not that I use it anymore.....
    Will say I was pretty surprised when I stepped into modeling and found this dropout on all the units I owned (zoom,Atomic,Helix) was a thing.
     
  10. DeSelby

    DeSelby Member

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    There’s an intimation in your last paragraph that provides hope to those of us who would really like to see the block count increased. I hope this is not another side-eye:) I had postulated that the 6 block limit was set in the first instance because of UI design considerations. It subsequently occurred to me that equal consideration was probably given to the limit because of concerns about market segmentation. If the Stomp were to have more than 6 blocks it might well have the effect of eroding the market for the HX Effects.

    And in my reading an enhanced Stomp probably would eat into the market share for the FX. But the FX still has 8 switches versus 3. And for a lot of players that is an important consideration. They won’t want to spend the time, effort and monies to extend the Stomp into a more versatile solution. But in my estimation enhancing the block count on the Stomp will completely offset any loss of sales for the FX by stupendously increasing the Stomp’s market share.

    Of course all of this is conjecture and opinion and should be taken with the proverbial grain of salt.
     
  11. smj

    smj Member

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    Heck even spillover would make it more usable mid song than what it is. Add to that even just dry signal would be way more usable than just no signal at all.

    Speaking of early 90’s, I recall a guitar player magazine issue with Reb Beach, Richie Kotzen, and Nuno Bettencourt talking about this very issue with signal dropouts. Back then, it was still mostly all dedicated digital rack units for each effect and they were debating the best way to manage everything without dropouts!

    The stomp I believe is true bypass, so I’m not sure why there’s a total signal loss between presets. @Digital Igloo ???

    Sean Meredith-Jones
    www.seanmeredithjones.com
     
  12. Watt McCo

    Watt McCo Member

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    and @dmock66 -- some very rough pics of in-progress. I got it fired up tonight and sounds great. Cab outside dimensions are 16x21.5x9.5 - so a little bigger than a Princeton Reverb, but there's no amp chassis, so total active cab volume is probably right in between Princeton and Deluxe Reverb. Fully loaded with Stomp board and its battery, power amp, speaker, etc., it seems to weigh a little less than my Princeton Reverb. Power amp is just a Mooer Baby Bomb that you can see mounted to the underside of the cab top panel. Might upgrade to a SD Powerstage or just build an ICEpower board in future, but in no rush to do that. Will be adding a small powerstrip and either a DI box or IR loader w/ XLR output mounted...somewhere.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Digital Igloo

    Digital Igloo Member

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    That particular DigiTech was very unique; AFAIK, it's the only guitar processor on the planet that has true preset spillover. (Edit: both the GSP-1101 and GSP2101 had it.) It accomplished this because instead of making a new flagship modeler with better modeling, more simultaneous blocks, or any number of other DSP-intensive tasks, DigiTech instead decided to take their previous flagship, add a second DSP, and use it for spillover and only spillover. Quite literally HALF of its processing power was dedicated to spillover. It's a bold strategy, Cotton.

    Let's say we make a new Helix with four SHARCS (and the requisite noisy fan to cool the thing). Instead of better amps, better effects, more simultaneous blocks, or any number of other features, we instead decide to make everything the same... except with spillover. At best, people would revolt; at worst, we'd go out of business.

    Now there are other paths forward that don't rely on full preset spillover. Global delay and/or reverb, for example. The trick there is that you're still dedicating XX% of your processing to spillover, and every preset has to have the same delay and/or reverb model. You can also dedicate RAM to constantly sample and loop the output signal to sort of mask the gap, which, if you don't know exactly how long it'll take to load the selected preset's DSP blocks, can still result in a short gap or level bump. Neither is the end of the world, but we've decided that snapshots are a more elegant solution to the problem; generally, those who disagree are simply accustomed to a different manufacturer's solution.

    We have some other ideas, but they're tricky and complicated.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2019 at 1:27 PM
  14. PaisleyWookie

    PaisleyWookie Member

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    We saw how well that worked out for them. ;)
     
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  15. kdm1218

    kdm1218 Supporting Member

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    @smj so to summarize, it sounds like what you are wishing for isn’t very feasible even on a full Floor.
     
  16. Bigjay

    Bigjay Member

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    I dont know the technology behind it, but my gt 100 had no gap either.

    I dont remember my zoom g7 having one either, but since it was my first guitar device ever, I woulndt bet that my memory serves me well haha

    I believe atomic and kemper have a mixing/spillover tool to hide the gap, i wonder how ut works and it could be implemented in the helix (or at what dsp-cost)
     
  17. uglybassplayer

    uglybassplayer Member

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    Former Helix Floor (and current HX Effects) owner here. I'm working on something similar for the HX FX. 95% of the time, I'm running into my Quilter Mach-2 8" combo, so the amp/cab modeling wasn't crucial to me. I just purchased a Donner DB-2 20"x8" pedalboard along with one of those Dunlop Mini-X pedals. I also ordered one of these Valeton Coral Amp stomp boxes to run in the effects loop in the event I need to use it direct into a board. Considering the HX FX supports Cab IRs, I figure the only thing missing is the amp modeling, and between the access to 6 stomp buttons and support for up to 9 blocks instead of 6, it all added up to being a better choice than the HX Stomp, at least for my needs.
     
  18. dmock66

    dmock66 Member

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    That is WICKED COOL!!! Clever ideal to create an awesome all-in-one. If you like the tone, that's key.

    I'm no wood-working craftsman - but I built a 1x12 and 2x12 cabinet back in the mid 00s and still have them today. Granted they're no Marshall/Mesa cab, but they work and have served me well along the way.
     
  19. Digital Igloo

    Digital Igloo Member

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    No, it does. It just has global reverb to smear over it.

    Also note that the more complex the DSP, the longer the gap is, regardless of horsepower. For example, the original POD had almost no gap either, but that's not because it was ultra-advanced or something—it just had much less DSP to unload and then reload for the next preset.
     
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  20. mousepunk

    mousepunk Member

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    maybe it's time for Line 6 to develop their own processor architecture? :cool:
     

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