TC Toneprints. Are they just selling us MultiFX presets?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by odgeuk, Jan 27, 2015.

  1. odgeuk

    odgeuk Member

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    Bear with me on this. Stream of conciousness thing perhaps.

    In the 90s, and I guess the early noughties, Rack multiFX with midi-controllers were the pinnacle of flexibility and hi-fidelity FX. Digital FX with infinite parameters were IN. Phasers, Delays, Distortions, all painstakingly recreated from classic models, the abililty to tweak the parameters to the nth degree with PC editors, and save to a hundred preset slots. Old noisy stompboxes were OUT.

    And then the tide shifted and it was all about dedicated stomp boxes doing single things, very well. Digital Multi-FX were cool, but they were digital sims, not REAL circuits, with the correct components and this and that IC chip or Transistor, or Inductor.

    And now we have the TC toneprint pedals. Initially just great sounding pedals with this cool feature to have a slot in it to save a version of the settings that access parameters outside of the pedal controls.

    And then, seemingly by public demand, the editor is released so people can tweak those parameters themselves. And, with the release of the new Helix phaser and Viscous Vibe, we pretty much have a pedal for each popular sound, with recreations of a whole history of famous pedals.

    Is it me? Or have TC just managed to convince us to buy multi-FX, but a pedal at a time? I mean, don't get me wrong, the pedals are amazing, but something like the Viscous vibe is basically a digital DSP sim of a Univibe right? It's like someone took the program from a multi-fx and stuck it in a casing?

    If it sounds good, it IS good. I'm cool with that. I'm just thinking that this is marketing genius at work.

    Who would prefer it if TC put all the toneprint pedals in a rack unit with a floor controller, and the toneprint editor to create an infinite number of toneprints that you could save as patches and presets to the unit? Or is that almost the G-System........
     
  2. schizo910

    schizo910 Member

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    To me the benefit IS the fact that it's a single pedal. Most multi effects are to big for a pedalboard if it's packed with tons of effects but al you use is it's reverb or delay. On the other hand; the smaller multieffects like the zoom multistomp or line6 m5 have the disadvantage that you can't use more than one effect at a time.
     
  3. gibs5000

    gibs5000 Member

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    I like neunaber's way of doing this, get their pedal and add an ExP to it, and you have instant access to up to 4 different effects that they offer, plus 2 presets for each, makes it a good middle of the road option when compared to something like the toneprints and Istomps, and on the other side of the spectrum, getting a rack unit with a floorboard controller.
     
  4. odgeuk

    odgeuk Member

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    Good point. I guess if you just want 2 or 3 FX, a whole Midi floor controller or a Boss GT / Digitech etc is overkill. That makes a lot of sense. I'm coming from the angle that I'd probably want ALL the TC Toneprint pedals as they reflect all the major sounds one associates with electric guitar ('Cept maybe Wah and Octave stuff)

    I guess I'm just a little freaked out / suspicious of gimmicks, when people are like "This Flanger pedal sounds AMAZING.... and you can go on your computer and like, CHANGE ALL THE PARAMETERS!". I'm thinking at this point......I can do that on my 10 yr old Boss GT-8.... this is NOT innovation....but the packaging is...

    I guess conceptually, this is putting the processing of racks, at your feet, in a small footprint.
     
  5. ERGExplorer

    ERGExplorer Member

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    Is there a benefit to the buyer to getting a one-effect single stomp, instead of a single stomp which can do multiple effects?

    In other words, is it better for the buyer to get one of the TC Toneprint pedals which does chorus, so you can choose either the presets or the one algorithm you decide is worth that one "anything goes!" slot... or is it better to go with the Zoom MS709CDR, which allow you to choose *any* of the chorus effects inside when you bend over to switch the effect? (I'm even skipping over the fact that the Zoom MS series pedals can have up to 6 effects in each patch, in any order, of the 100 total modulation, delay and reverb effects on board.)

    Is it better for the buyer to have to buy a whole new pedal when TC releases a "special" patch ("New TC Reverb setting, so be sure to buy your special edition of the HOF!"), in the same way each of us would have to buy a new computer in order to get a special piece of software? Or is it better to go with something which comes with all the software to begin win?

    Is it better for the buyer to have to buy each possible effect algorithm separately (the initial purchase scheme with the Eventide H9 and the Digitech iStomp), or instead to get all the algorithms with the unit to begin with, with possible free software updates of the unit when more algorithms are developed (Line 6, Zoom)?

    I agree with the OP that it's marketing genius to require the users to purchase a new unit (identical to others except in paint job) to get a new algorithm.

    It's also marketing genius to make people pay for each effect, because then you can charge the suckers for any improvements down the road.

    Schizo910, if you can only get 1 effect at a time out of your Zoom Multistomp, you're doing it wrong.

    I highly suggest you read your manual, because the Zoom MS50G, MS70CDR and MS100BT can all have up to 6 effects active in each patch.
     
  6. gibs5000

    gibs5000 Member

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    Another reason I like Neunaber, his updates/effects on his pedal programming software is FREE!!!!!!!!
     
  7. odgeuk

    odgeuk Member

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    This. This articulates my point.

    If you watch Torr from TC at NAMM 2015 talking about the Viscous Vibe, he does allude to the fact that previous pedals all used different parts of the DSP, but the Viscous Vibe is different in that the vibe effect is dedicated and "All the DSP is doing" in that particular effect (which also perhaps suggests that toneprint flexibility for that particular effect is probably more limited than the other pedals.). I'm not sure what that really means but I take it to suggest that the chip (or whatever) that is used for the pedals can be any pedal, at any time, except the Vibe, which has to use the whole processor for that particular SIM, as it's presumably so complex.
     
  8. gibs5000

    gibs5000 Member

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    ^Thats what I've wondered, I bet if you opened up a number of the pedals (at least the modulations) that they would all be identical on the inside, its just the Programming thats different. And that they have some sort of firewall in place, to keep you from putting ANY pedal on them, like a reverb algo on the Corona, or a Flashback algo on the Vibe.

    Where as guys like Neunaber, don't bother with this, they embrace allowing you to use any effect on any of there pedals, so long as you have a USB cable and a computer that will run their software.

    Sorry if I sound like a Fanboy, I just like their business practices over similar products, that charge for their algo's, Eventide for example.
     
  9. cbm

    cbm Silver Supporting Member

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    Eventide has a business model that has allowed them to stay in business, developing new algorithms, for decades. I don't fault them for that. I don't mind paying for algorithms, and I thought that the upgrade to H9 Max was quite fair.

    As a thought experiment, think of the H9 Max as the only H9 product, and evaluate if you think the features is has is worth $699 (street, without a coupon). For me, it absolutely is. (It's also worth noting that Eventide goes through the retail chain, so there's an extra markup along the way.)

    I also have a Neunaber Slate w/ ExP ($338) and I love it for what it does, not because of their business model.
     
  10. schizo910

    schizo910 Member

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    My bad...

    My point being more that it can be overkill to have so many effects in one unit while only using a handfull.
    I own the flashback delay, if TC decided to,bring out a "new and improved" version, i couldn't care less. I don't need every update or new thing as long as the previous works and fullfils my needs.

    I personally also like my effects to have their own dedicated spot on my board. (Not to mention effect order) Without the need to worry if the top left unit is a flanger now or if it's still on chorus...
    Ofcourse it's also a marketing technique. But can you blame them? They have a business to run. The more units they sell the more new ideas and pedals can be developped. It's nit like they're holding a gun to your head ordering yóu to buy their stuff.
     
  11. gibs5000

    gibs5000 Member

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    I didnt say that their business practice is the only reason I like them, I said I like that they feel they don't need to charge for algos they also sound amazing as well, if they didn't, I probably wouldn't even consider them. I singled out eventide, because they were the first that came to mind that charge for additional algos.

    And no, $700 is way too much, I don't care how good it sounds, I have a hard time justifying paying more than $300 on any pedal (which for your info I plan on building my own ExP, so that keeps the V2 total price under $300 for me), whether it sounds unbelieveable or not. Even if it has 50 different effects that it does. And the stock H9 only comes with like 5 algos, most of which I wouldn't use. So yea, $400 bucks is not worth it either, especially since I can spend $50 more at that point and get a Mobius, or Timeline, or Bigsky, (depending on which I felt would do the most for my needs).

    At any rate this is more of a YMMV, thats my personal thoughts, as the OP seems to be thinking of the fact that in the case of TC, they are charging you on a per pedal basis, when the toneprints are in a way, a lot like multi FX units.
     
  12. ERGExplorer

    ERGExplorer Member

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    If I can get three things I want out of a piece of gear for the same price or less compared to other gear, and never use the other 97 things, I wouldn't turn up my nose at those three things.

    If I am also open to possibly having a use for the unused 97 things at some point in the future, that would make the piece of gear even more potentially useful.

    I'm not sure if you're arguing that having the possibility of loading new toneprints makes the TC gear overkill, or what. There is no one forcing anyone to make use of all those additional online toneprints, which makes their availability just overkill.

    ????
     
  13. Squigglefunk

    Squigglefunk Senior Member

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    yup, you pretty much nailed it
     
  14. Bobby Wasabi

    Bobby Wasabi Member

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    I can see the point of the OP.

    However, I got a Flashback because I wanted a digital delay in a small package that has some versatility. The only Toneprint I have ever used is the Space Echo one, I use that for rhythmic delays. I also use the slapback for country leads and occasionally the dynamic and lo fi.

    I've had multi-fx units in the past. Sometimes, though, you only want one effect with some variety to it and tweak-ability.
     
  15. olejason

    olejason Supporting Member

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    The word of the year will be "algorithm." The microtransaction BS that has infected so many other forms of entertainment is picking up a lot of steam in the pedal world. It is a business model that I will never support in any shape or form.
     
  16. Dubious

    Dubious Member

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    if TC made a "blank" pedal in the format and it just had multiple slots for the toneprints i'd by it.

    like a stripped down h9
     
  17. Squigglefunk

    Squigglefunk Senior Member

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    yeah, if someone would just come out with a unit that could do multiple digital effect models in one box that you could download and swap ,etc...

    they could call it a multi-effects or something
     
  18. olejason

    olejason Supporting Member

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    DUDE they could call it the "iStomp"!!!!
     
  19. axdxm

    axdxm Silver Supporting Member

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    Maybe these are just presets, but the Toneprint editor allows you to tweak things you couldn't in other effects units. You can play sound designer with that editor..and for that, its not a ripoff by any means.
     
  20. Bobby Wasabi

    Bobby Wasabi Member

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    Unless, of course, it means one day I can pay ONLY for the TV channels I want! :banana
     

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