Modeler users (11R, Axe Fx, Kemper, etc) FRRR and the need to tweak EQ

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by BuckeyeBrown, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. BuckeyeBrown

    BuckeyeBrown Supporting Member

    Messages:
    729
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Location:
    NE OH-IO
    I have the an 11R that I was playing through small Yamaha HS50M's and they sound great. To get louder I was disabling cabs and going into my tube amps effects loop. Sounded great.

    Last week I pulled the trigger and got the Kemper. Its awesome and I'm planning on selling my 2 tube amps, cab and probably 11R and going full modelling stereo rig and pick up two active FRFR cabs last night.

    I just auditioned them through music in the store which sounded fine but I'm new to FRFR so I wasn't sure what to expect. After a much debate I decided to go cheap and stick with my desire to run a stereo rig in my basement. I don't gig so yes, I know having this much power is overkill for my needs but coming from tube amp and cabs I could just be satisfied with 5" near field monitors.

    I went with the Mackie Thumps on sale, hooked it all up last night, enable my cabs on the Kemper but was underwhelmed. Perhaps too much new stuff going on (FRFR sound with cab modeling on, etc.). I knew the Mackie Thumps would require dialing out the boomieness but I also felt the need to change my global "Master" eq settings too. In addition I also feel the need to tweak eq on many of the profiles too.... :huh

    Okay so what's my point/questions...


    Is tweaking EQ to agree with/sound good with FRFR speakers something that I should have expected?

    Is the nature uploading other people's profiles into the Kemper something that I should have expected that I would need to tweak to sound good through my FRFR's? It makes sense that this would be needed but I feel like I'll probably need to tweak all of my profiles to sound right.

    Don't get me wrong, after tweaking the Thumps, the Kemper master and the profiles that I've tweaked - they rigs sound amazing. I'm wonding if I would have been happier dropping the idea of a stereo rig and just spend the same amount or a little more and got a better quality FRFR like a QSC K series???


    Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated.
     
  2. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,806
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Location:
    Peoples Republic Of Cambridge
    I find the best way to tweak the Kemper for a Big FRFR is use the cabinet hi cut low cut in the cab menu a little goes a long way I run with my FBT 8MA i run hi cut-.02 and low +.01 I really dont need to use it I just dont like treble. I hear alot of people are liking the RCF SMA312. I have never heard good things @ the thump (or any mackie FRFR)
     
  3. mattball826

    mattball826 Member

    Messages:
    20,530
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2009
    tweaking to frfr is expected. they are all different. all monitors are different and react different in every room used in.

    if you keep the thump speakers, eq your sounds so they work with those speakers. dont eq with yam near field monitors and expect them to translate to mackie power pa speakers.
     
  4. barhrecords

    barhrecords Member

    Messages:
    1,529
    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    North Alabama
    I think that depends on how you are using your nearfields.

    Decent nearfields in treated room can produce a mix that translates pretty good on lots of different sound systems. This would be the same in creating a patch as mixing a record.

    If you find your nearfield mixes don't translate well, then you probably have some sort of issues in your mix room.

    That having been said, lower end powered speakers sometimes build in a low mid and/or bass boost. Wouldn't surprise me you would have to lop off those frequencies. Especially for electric guitar.

    Richard
     
  5. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,868
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    North Myrtle Beach, SC
    I am having the same internal debate as to whether to try FRFR one last time (yeah right) now that I have the Kemper. I believe my dream of having amazing tones direct to disk, headphones, nearfields, FRFR AND power amp + traditional cab with the SAME patch is just that, a pipe dream.
    I do feel that I will be able to get reasonably close and there is no way I'm going to have 4-5 different versions of the same patch/profile/rig for each setup. I'm already going from recorded to disk, headphones and nearfields with most of my KPA rigs well right now. When I do crank the nearfields the treble spikes and nasties start to rear their ugly head, but I really feel that is more the Adam A5's using a less than 5" driver AND the fact that they are pointed directly at my head...
    :omg
    That is what is driving me to test FRFR one more time; I feel like my KPA wants to open up and be pushed through a 12" driver. When I am able to get volume up using power amp + cab it sounds pretty good (even when just using the monitor out with cab disabled, no profiles built specifically around DI or anything) but I'm also having a problem with my speaker -- needs to be broken in bigtime... which may never happen at the volumes I normally play at :(
    I feel like one of the "wins" for the KPA is the full blown profile, cab included so it probably deserves a test drive with FRFR.
    FWIW I have researched my options and it's down to EV ELX112P or RCF 312A. They are both supposed to be nice, the EV uses a baltic birch ply cab (nice, I like wood enclosure) but the RCF is supposed to be very smooth across all frequencies and I can score it ~$400 vs. $500 for the EV (on sale).
    The EV has some ridiculous wattage rating, like 1000 watts while I believe the RCF is only 350? But some real world experiences from users have noted they are both capable of getting loud as f*ck.
     
  6. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

    Messages:
    36,861
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Location:
    Michigan
    I'll post this but expect to get flamed for it. But that is NOT the intent, I promise you.

    IMHO, YMMV.

    If you have a premium preamp that costs 850$+ or $1850+ or $2200+ and stick it through a powered monitor costing up to 1/3 the price, you cannot expect FRFR to stand as a paradigm. It will - and can - work, but not in the manner you'd expect.

    You are going to have to step to to the $750+ 1000 watt 'wunderboxes' (Yamaha, QSC, JBL, etc) to get 'good' results befitting your investment and - speaking from experience - are MUCH better served stepping up to the $1000+ mark and getting into truly professional level solutions instead of 'nice speakers' instead.

    I post that not to be a cork sniffing condescending yahoo; I post that because that's what I've found through experience and many folks that have been 'happy' with their speakers 'get it' instantly when they try something like the RCF NX 12SMA - I've seen it personally when folks try my monitor.

    Of course you can get reasonable priced boxes and many folks make them work just fine. That is not my point. The point is that if you've got near $2K in your preamp, and want your actual amplification and reference monitoring on the same level, you will need to spend upwards of +$1000 in my experience.

    Again, this isn't an absolute, please don't flame me - I'm being honest because I've tried the lower end stuff, the pro-sumer 'wunder boxes' and ended up stepping up to the RCF NX because it was the first box that really did the expensive preamp I own justice.

    Just an opinion; just something to consider.
     
  7. t3oi

    t3oi Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,059
    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2006
    Location:
    Dallas
    Scott, that makes perfect sense. If the speaker is going to be your weak link and the "you're only as strong as your weakest link," then it makes sense to go with the best possible solution.

    The speaker is the last chance to get the tone right before hitting our ears!
     
  8. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,868
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    North Myrtle Beach, SC
    Well, I took the plunge and grabbed an RCF 312A.
     
  9. rcl

    rcl Member

    Messages:
    1,716
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago area (Cary)
    I lived this. Had a K12 and K8 for over a year and was content. The first practice with the SMA10 blew my freaking mind.
     
  10. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

    Messages:
    36,861
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Location:
    Michigan
    Just to further clarify what I was trying to say - the OP is asking about the need to tweak EQ for your output monitors when running FRFR.

    My point (or at least the point I was trying to make (and SonicGator and rcl both understood correctly) is that with a proper pro level FRFR monitor, you do not need to do corrective EQ with it on stage or in the room. It just puts out what you put in, clean, clear and without adding 'flavor' to it.
     
  11. Black Squirrel

    Black Squirrel Silver Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    2,806
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Location:
    Peoples Republic Of Cambridge

    Good, I await your report. I have been eying those for a while.
     
  12. Pietro

    Pietro 2-Voice Guitar Junkie and All-Around Awesome Guy

    Messages:
    16,413
    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2007
    Location:
    Maineville, OH
    I also find that tweaking with decent studio monitors (or even better bookshelf speakers) and then doing final little tweaks with the real PA (in the real room if you can) works great...

    I only really use my Verve live. When tweaking, I use a pair of old AR bookshelf speakers that I picked because of how much they sound like the old Yamaha NS10Ms... works wonders for me.
     
  13. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,868
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    North Myrtle Beach, SC
    Will do, hope to have it by the weekend if lucky. I know it seems silly, but I just cannot justify the coin for high(er) quality FRFR right now. Maybe if I was gigging regularly. But even then, aren't most of you guys using your personal monitor as your "personal" monitor? I envision using this for both personal home use at low to moderate levels, carting to jams and eventually bringing to gigs if it holds up. The reports I have heard is that it's "pretty solid" and a very nice bang for the buck. I would assume this could hang with most run of the mill PA systems that are usually available at most places? Maybe not.
    I guess I have booteek taste but I'm always looking for a good deal ;)
    This will at least allow me to get in the FRFR game and compare my experiences between this and power amp + cab. Still gotta break in that Scumback speaker though.
    The way I figure it my Adam A5's are probably considered just okay nearfield monitors as well. I love them, but they are not extraordinary in anyway, they get the job done. If I can get my patches sounding good on those and they translate well to the RCF 312A I will be very happy. Eventually I will consider an upgrade.
     
  14. OutterLimits

    OutterLimits Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    864
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    Location:
    Connecticut

    Your opinion, does the powered Atomic 50 sound as good as the RCF NX 12-SMA? Just curious if you ever compared the two.

    700 watts and under 40 lbs ... tempting ....
     
  15. Scott Peterson

    Scott Peterson Staff Member

    Messages:
    36,861
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Location:
    Michigan
    Not similar by any means or measure no.

    I have not directly compared them side by side. I have used both personally though just not at the same time.

    IMHO, YMMV.
     
  16. barhrecords

    barhrecords Member

    Messages:
    1,529
    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    North Alabama
    Here is a good litmus test.

    Get a CD, .wav file or .flac of your favorite record / track.

    Now listen to it on all your systems, headphones, earbuds, boombox, nearfields, PA FOH, powered wedges etc.

    If it sounds decent to you on all those systems, then it is *possible* to make patches that translate well.

    (I like Crazy Train by Ozzy or Welcome To The Jungle by GNR just because those are played soooooo much in sports arenas these days... how do they get that mix to sound good in a football stadium?)

    The kicker is having the combination of the knowledge, ears and monitoring system and monitoring environment to pull it off :)

    For example, engineers that really know their stuff can make great mixes that translate really well but using inferior speakers or *bad* mixing rooms etc.

    Richard
     
  17. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,868
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2007
    Location:
    North Myrtle Beach, SC
    I agree to what you are saying in theory, but from personal experience I have found that a good amount of mid-level FRFR sounds GREAT when playing back recorded music. The experience is MUCH different when dedicated to amplifying solo electric guitar, IMHO. Not only does the initial guitar tone have to sound good, many, many different guitar tones have to sound good using: different guitars, different virtual amps, cabs, mics, FX, etc... It also has to sound good at low, medium and very loud volumes. Plus, it should "feel" good to the player and react to volume knob changes, picking attack, etc... the ultimate litmus test is head to head against a real power amp + cab comparison. I don't think the solutions would sound the same, but I do think they both should sound "good" if that makes any sense.
    A tall order for a mid-priced FRFR solution for sure.
     
  18. barhrecords

    barhrecords Member

    Messages:
    1,529
    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Location:
    North Alabama
    Ah, but if you play back isolated electric guitar parts from various records in different genres and those sound great on your midrange FRFR...

    Then why can't your presets get to the same quality level?

    Disclaimer: I am an AxeFx II owner. I play mostly FRFR, low end actually, but I create my presets in my studio using NS10m nearfields. I personally find pwr amp + guitar cab more forgiving for creating and playing back presets. Very very simple and effective with the AxeFx II using all default settings.

    Richard
     
  19. EZchair Picker

    EZchair Picker Member

    Messages:
    461
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    When I went shopping for a FRFR, I was in the same boat. I went to GC planning on saving some bucks buying a Thump. After auduitioning several speakers and much deliberation, I decided to buy once, buy right and went with the one that sounded best to me...a K10. Best investment I could have made. The patches I make using it as my reference translate nicely to the PA system at my church, no tweaking needed at the big board. The quality and clarity of the sound makes me happy that I did not 'settle' (not infering that a thump is settling, rather that I wanted the speaker that seemed best for me). I'm only running a lowly RP500, if I had a kemper or axe, I'd want the best FRFR that I could get. YMMV. :)
     

Share This Page