Keeping your analog pedalboard and going direct to PA.

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by The Rocket, Jan 12, 2020.

  1. The Rocket

    The Rocket Member

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    Is there anyone who had the chance to compare the Iridium vs. the Atomic Firebox?

    That is a comparison I would like to hear.
     
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  2. jrjones

    jrjones Member

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    Lots of guys are using the kemper in place of an amp and keeping their spaceship pedalboards out front.
     
  3. Guitardave

    Guitardave Supporting Member

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    Warning long - opinionated answer.

    Get a Firebox and don't look back. It's cheap, fairly idiot proof modeling that sounds great. The Deluxe Reverb is really great sounding. Having the analog dials makes it useful for live work with a pedalboard. All those menus are a PITA by comparison. Plus it has the spring reverb modeling so you can use it just like the actual amp.

    I've run it fully direct at gigs with the other guitar player using a Fender Blues Deluxe and you couldn't tell which was the tube amp.

    Ignore most of the TGP nonsense about sound quality differences...they are highly exaggerated especially for what you are after.

    If you've already been micing your amp and listening thru the PA it'll be a simple transition. If you are used to your amp on the stage it's more of an adjustment. But you will get it and it's really not that tough if you have a good ear and are patient. You will benefit by hooking up the Firebox to the computer and get it dialed in once. I have a few IRs I like from Celestion and LRS. Lots of people really like the Ownhammer stuff - I'm sure I would as well. Find something that is based on the speaker you already have in your amp. That was a quick shortcut to getting results.

    Lots of people who use modeling are trying to sound like the recordings they hear. I'm not. I want things to sound like what I hear from my amp in my typical monitoring position. Forget about all the BS philosophy and just listen and it's not that hard to do. I setup my PA along with my amp and then dialed in the modeler so it sounds really close to what I hear from my physical amp. Cutting the highs and lows from the PA channel often is all it takes. The cleans are easy to get right, the overdrive tones are where it tends to sound brittle. That's where the IR choice really helps. But you will figure it out and once you do it's incredible. I now can have "my sound" everywhere in the venue. I often run my Fender Deluxish amp for my own monitor and feed the PA with the modeling. I've got it so close I can walk out front and it's hard to tell which I'm hearing. Depending on the gig I just adjust the channel strip on the PA to easily change the overall EQ. Way simpler than tweaking on the modeler.

    But despite all that success I still prefer having a guitar cab on stage. Don't sell off your Fender - just use the Firebox for awhile and see how you like the modeling approach.

    The only reason I don't have the Firebox anymore is because I wanted the option to run digital effects and you can't really do that easily on stage with the Firebox. You have to program everything in advance which doesn't really suit my personality. That shouldn't matter for what you described.

    BTW - here's my latest hybrid rig. All battery powered on the board and I can simultaneously run fully direct with cab modeling and to the Quilter/Mesa cab without it. Or just use the Mooer as a tuner/delay/trem pedal into my tube amp. And it weighs about one pound. BTW - highly recommend some sort of EQ control if you use something other than the Firebox. Having instant tone adjustment at my fingertips is what matters the most for me live.

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  4. caledoneus

    caledoneus Member

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    one more option you might want to look at is the HX Stomp. Would give you all of the amp/cab options you could ever want...
     
  5. jackson

    jackson Member

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    Guitar -> pedalboard -> 5 watt tube amp (like a blackstar, with emulated line out) -> PA. The amp is your monitor.
     
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  6. The Rocket

    The Rocket Member

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    That was INCREDIBLY helpful, thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with me.
    I'm definitely leaning towards the Firebox after my search and after what you said. Fortunately I'm not in a hurry and I think I will wait a bit before pulling the trigger because I'm a little intrigued by the new Carl Martin pedal called Ampster which is an analog amp sim...it's supposed to be released soon.

    THanks again for your great help!
     
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  7. ilikeoverdrive

    ilikeoverdrive Member

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    I can speak for the Radial JDX, simple and great sounding! It's actually just a series of analog filters with no clipping, and it only has 5 possible settings, but it's very easy to get a good tone out of it. Plus you can use the THRU and TUNER outs as a signal splitter in case you need it. All analogue, for what it's worth. And a quality build.

    Here's mine with a few pedals, hope it helps:
     
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  8. yerbluesrob

    yerbluesrob Supporting Member

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    Amplifirebox and Simplifier are both great, if you are running mono I would 100% go with the AFB, I like to run stereo so I switched over from running two AFB's to the Simplifier. Both have their pluses and minuses, but both are great options. I've got friends who have the Irridium and are in love with it, so I don't think you can go wrong with any of these. It's more about budget and options your looking for (IR's, stereo, onboard effects, simple interface/knobs vs plugging in a computer, etc). Sound wise I think you will be happy with any of those 3.
     
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  9. Guitardave

    Guitardave Supporting Member

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    No problem...TGP is a great community if you can get past the arguing. :cool:

    Take your time - this stuff keeps getting "better" but the quality levels are already really high. Beware of the whole TGP hype and weirdness about "tone" discussions. The quality of your PA system and stage monitoring is probably going to be more of a limiting factor.

    Focus on functionality. Turns out what I value most is simplicity. If it takes more than a second to adjust a control knob it's probably not going to work out. I've "convinced" myself I'm ok with the Mooer because I have that EQ to use in a pinch if something sounds off. I don't futz with trem/delay/verb settings much at all and rarely use them. Odds are high I'm just going to use my tube combo amp for most gigs.

    Oh, and one last useful trick is to use rubber disc washers under the control knobs of the Firebox so they won't move unless you want them to. You can thank me later...I got the tip from someone years ago on TGP and have used it ever since. :D
     
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  10. strumminsix

    strumminsix Member

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  11. Madmax25

    Madmax25 Member

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    Wow, didn't know about that one. That looks like a really cool product with all the functionality you could need for a direct, mono rig. Hmmm... :cool:
     
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  12. Mayhem13

    Mayhem13 Member

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    I’m headed in this direction as well so I started with the Iridium.....awesome tones but limited in presets BUT.....add a BOSS EQ200 after it?......and the possibilities become endless! Can’t recommend this configuration enough! In essence, the thousands of amps out there are all built around the core tone of the three amp models in the Iridium (except Orange which is it’s own thing). The preset eQ curves stored in the BOSS allow you to shape your tone to infinity.
     
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  13. ElectricPhase

    ElectricPhase Member

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    The trick with the Amplifirebox is to treat it as one single channel amp. If you do that, it's not bad at all. If you buy into Atomic's marketing about presets and switching, you'll end up tearing out your hair and banging your head against the wall constantly.

    So yeah, it's perfect as a pedal platform.
     
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  14. Hejlstorm

    Hejlstorm Member

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    Just my opinion but i think the trick to the firebox would be to throw it in the trash. Absolutely the worst amp modeler I've ever heard. I would recommend the boss gt1 on the full range or natural clean patch.
     
  15. angelsvictory

    angelsvictory Member

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    The Neunaber Neuron is amazing with a pedalboard. Having the feel and tonal variety of a tube amp from clean to scream, a cab sim, built in comp, noise gate, and 6 presets (24 with midi) is insanity! It is also smaller than a Boss pedal.
     
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  16. ElectricPhase

    ElectricPhase Member

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    Whoah...and I thought I was being harsh. :D
     
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  17. Hejlstorm

    Hejlstorm Member

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    Hope i didn't hurt anyone's feelings. Im really a nice guy. Just my opinion. If anyone wants some fuel to criticize me back, i love peavey bandits and one of my favorite guitars is an LTD h100 made in Korea lol...
     
  18. strumminsix

    strumminsix Member

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    It's a really cool tool. And they are very true to the Twin sound. And it's WYSIWYG simple and no stupid footswitch to turn it off accidentally at a gig. LOL! Only nit, I wish it had onboard reverb. Simple spring reverb would make this perfect.

    QFT. I know that's sooooo 15 years ago but you're right. If you think of it as a set it and forget it single channel amp, it's awesome. Personally, I think it's one of the better tools out there. HOWEVER, their editor over-complicates the simplest things and things that should work one way don't or show no change so tough to dial in some things.
     
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  19. sugarlou

    sugarlou Member

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    Had both. In a nutshell with the Iridium I was smiling in 5 min. Not so with Firebox.
     
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  20. rburkard

    rburkard Gold Supporting Member

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    I tried this approach with the BluGuitar Amp 1 and a few pedals. The sound was good but a compromise to my Kemper Toaster and it got heavy just for flight gigs. Now I am so happy with my Kemper Stage. This is one small and lightweight and gives me everything I want.
     
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