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Axe FX 2 XL + sounds dull please help Home recording.

Keg8605

Power User
Just jumping in quick here to make sure this was checked. Any reason you are using a TRS cable out of output 1 left? Or do you mean XLR? I think you're supposed to use a TS cable out of the 1/4 outputs 1. Not sure this is the problem just noting it might be an issue?
 

Gredinguitar

New Member
Yea that was my mistake with what I wrote. I'm using an unbalanced TS cable out from the Output 1 into the interface. Only TRS cables I have are for my monitors.
 

Variable

Inspired
Not sure if it's been asked yet, but have you tried a different cable from the guitar to the Axe? Long cables introduce capacitance, which will start to chop off high-end frequencies in the same way your tone pot does. Low-quality or damaged cables can do the same thing. Try getting a shorty patch cable you know is good and use that to plug into the Axe (a George-L cable would be ideal as they have the most high-end of any cable I've used). The fact that you get the same sound playing direct to the Axe through a monitor is even more evidence that the cable may be the culprit, especially if you've tried to different guitars. You could take that same cable and plug it into a guitar amp and see if you notice the same behavior.

Also, check and make sure that the Input Impedance setting on the Input screen on the Axe is set to "Auto", otherwise it may be simulating the same thing that you'd get with a longer cable. Lower input impedance will begin to chop off high-end.
 

Keg8605

Power User
Ok so I thought about it for awhile. When I have used amp sims and stuff in the past I have noticed an issue with the high end of the frequency spectrum not being where it should be. (Missing) I thought this was an issue with my guitar. Well I actually just got a new one. High end issues were the reason I actual bought the new guitar in the first place. So I checked it out with a spectrum analyzer. Then compared it to my old one and they are the same pretty much. I then took and compared it to someone else's DI wav and analyzed it as well. Here is a pic of what I found.
The two on the left are mine. One is direct into interface and the other through the Axe. Finally the one on the right is someone else's. There is a steep drop off from about 1500 on-wards on my two in comparison. I'm not sure what could be causing this. Any ideas? These are DI guitars btw.

So this sounds like something is wrong before the axe to me and before your interface... If both those guitars 1 is axe and the other direct into interface are cutting off around 1500 hz and that other is not. Thats how I percieve this. Hmmm strange.
 

Gredinguitar

New Member
Yea. It's like the signal is getting a high cut on it or something. The two on the left are mine. Top is into interface and the bottom is into the Axe. The one on the right is taken from a guitar DI from a mixing project. It's raw though. All raw DI takes though. Can a usb plug on a computer act as a high cut if the port is going out or has issues? Also I have changed cables and tested and it's the same. So it's not the cable from the guitar to the inputs on either the Axe or Interface.
 

Keg8605

Power User
It can't be anything with the USB though because you said guitar > Axe> straight into monitor gives same dull sound right? So its cable/guitar related somehow...
 

Chronos

Experienced
The first clip you posted sounds like dead EMG pickups going into an amp with the gain turned up all the way. So, if it IS active pickups it can't hurt to recommend changing batteries?
 

Gredinguitar

New Member
Ok I'm gonna do another round of testing. The clips from before are passive pickups. Bare knuckle Nailbombs. So what I'm going to do is this. I have 3 different cables. 2 different guitars. One active and one passive. The active is a Ibanez with emg 85 in the bridge and 60 in the neck. The passive is a Schecter C1 with a Calibrated set of nailbombs. I'm going to do a round of each cable on the passive then a round of the active both into interface. Then I'll do another round of each cable on the passive and then the active into the axe as the interface. Since I don't have a way to record whats coming out from the monitors directly from the axe I'll just test that again on my own. I'll post results in a bit. New battery going into the active as well. :)
 

speedloader

Inspired
Try with another cable into the axe with headphones. If it solved the problem, try into the interface. If it didn't, it's the guitar. You'll figure out the culprit, at least it's not the axe.
 

Chronos

Experienced
I feel sorry you're having such problems pinning what this is after just buying your unit. If it wasn't from active pickups that were dead I was thinking it sounded like an overly aggressive noise-gate, or possibly the effect of passing the guitar signal through a passive direct box and having a volume drop from that. On that related note maybe an impedance issue somewhere.

You don't have any analog amps you could try plugging the guitars into for testing? It's not just the top end that sounds off it's also the distortion sounding off from what sounds like a really weak signal getting pushed through. You could take a multimeter to your guitars to make sure there isn't a cold soldering joint seeing as I doubt those BK nailbombs came stock. Soldering pickups to a dirty pot can produce those same results.
 

mongey

Inspired
plugging into an amp would be a good test .that it is 2 guitars makes it more complicated. for 1 I'd try disconnecting the tone pot from the circuit to see if that helps as that kind of roll off i would think bad lead or tone pot jacked up but for 2 guitars its a weird one
 

Gredinguitar

New Member
I don't have an amp. :blue:Kinda bought the axe instead so I could be relatively quiet. Ok the axe does sound better by going straight out to my monitors. It does as well on the headphones. It's cleaner but the sound is still too "hollow" Here is a pick of the diff guitars and cables. Left is the Passive guitar and Right is the active. Middle is from another person's guitar that was running Bare Knuckle Cold sweat. Freq Spec Interface 2g3c.jpg
 

geepee

Inspired
Do you know someone with a guitar and cable which you could borrow for an evening of testing? This would eliminate your gear as the front end problem.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
It's highly unlikely the Axe-Fx is at fault. All units are tested with an audio analyzer to make sure the I/O meets specifications. One way you can test the I/O is to use the synth block. Set the oscillator to pink noise and route it to the various outputs. Be sure to set the filter to 20 kHz (default is 10). Check the spectrum with your analyzer plug-in. It should be flat. You can then route the output of the synth to Output 2 and then jump Output 2 to the Inputs and route the inputs to Output 1 to make sure the inputs are working properly.
 

mongey

Inspired
when you say it sounds hollow are you using factory presets or your own patches ?

If you fire up factory presets Djentmanly how does it sound through headphones out of the axe ? if that preset doesn't sound bright you def have a problem
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
I'm not sure I understand how to "route it to the various outputs." Can I do this from AxeEdit? I'm sorry I'm lost.
Route it directly to the Output to test Output 1. Route it only to the FX Loop block to test Output 2. Then run a short cable from Output 2 to the front panel Input to test the input. Run a line of shunts from the input to the output.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
when you say it sounds hollow are you using factory presets or your own patches ?

If you fire up factory presets Djentmanly how does it sound through headphones out of the axe ? if that preset doesn't sound bright you def have a problem
Whenever someone says "hollow" that points to phase cancellation which usually means listening to the input and output of your DAW at the same time. The delay through the DAW causes phase cancellation.
 
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