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Axe-Fx II Firmware 17.00 Released

VeryBadMan

Experienced
17.00
...
Replaced the two 4x12 “Kalthallen” cabs with two UltraRes samples from Cab Pack 7.

Does anyone know which Factory cab numbers these are ? Is one of them " Factory 130 4 X 12 Recto new mix ( UR ) " ?
 

Smilzo

Power User
Once the preamp vu crosses the 0 point on the Fractal, the distortion sounds harsher than the plugins I regularly use.

Not a knock on the Fractal. I just find the drive and saturation controls have a limited range, 5 and under, or it doesn't sound good for what I do.
Maybe your level from previous block is too high.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
I've done some preliminary A/B with Slate VCC and some UAD plugs.

The concept of the preamp and console EQ in the Fractal is great. But for me, the useful range of the drive and saturation could use some refinement. Once the preamp vu crosses the 0 point on the Fractal, the distortion sounds harsher than the plugins I regularly use.

Not a knock on the Fractal. I just find the drive and saturation controls have a limited range, 5 and under, or it doesn't sound good for what I do.
0 on the VU meter indicates onset of clipping. It's not the same as your plug-ins in that regard. The problem with plug-ins is that you don't know where the onset of clipping is since the headroom isn't specified. Our way is superior since 0 dB indicates the point where things are clipping. The other way you have no idea where things start clipping. So 0 dB on the Axe-Fx is NOT equivalent to 0 dB on a typical plug-in. I figured that should be obvious but I was mistaken.
 

barhrecords

Axe-Master
0 on the VU meter indicates onset of clipping. It's not the same as your plug-ins in that regard. The problem with plug-ins is that you don't know where the onset of clipping is since the headroom isn't specified. Our way is superior since 0 dB indicates the point where things are clipping. The other way you have no idea where things start clipping. So 0 dB on the Axe-Fx is NOT equivalent to 0 dB on a typical plug-in. I figured that should be obvious but I was mistaken.
Sorry for being dense. I'm just a bedroom player.
 

BrainalLeakage

Experienced
Am I the only one that gets a little disappointed when the new updates don't really have anything you can use to tweak/improve your live patches? :(

Don't get me wrong. This new update has some fun things to play with, (and I have been playing) but there's just nothing in there that I can use to tweak/improve my current live patches with.

I guess my live patches have reached that point where they are exactly what they need to be. I guess it's time to write some new material...
 

Tailstop

Inspired
What do you mean Live Patches? Other than a gazillion more combinations of tonal option what exactly could an update bring other than that?
I'm sure that maybe on fw21 a little robot in a Fractal hoodie is gonna pop out (Robo-port!)and switch patches on yer MFC for you but until then I would personally use these updates as an excuse to dive into preset mechanics before rehearsals, Use the VU meter to tighten volume levels between songs that use different presets, Actually use the flanger now!!! (Sorry. Unchained by VH is the only time I ever liked it!)
Good luck man!
 

BrainalLeakage

Experienced
Live patches, as in the ones our band uses live. I use a different patch per song, because each of our songs has a unique tonal pallet. I'm a rather eclectic writer, so one song may be a funky JCM 800 on the verse, and a Cranked up Orange RV on the Chorus, and the next song may be Diezel VH4, channel 4 all out, with a bit of phaser, and delay on the solo. I'm really annoyingly picky about the our tone (on top of guitarist/vocalist/backing track programmer, I'm also the tone programming guy for both bass, and guitar) and I've spent a lot of time tweaking our presets, leveling out volumes, blah, blah, blah, and usually new FW updates give me something that takes something in a patch from "sort of," to "that's much better." This time. Not so much. I think I've just reached that point where our patches are "there." The tone in my head, reaches the end of the signal chain, and makes me happy.

The VU meter is going very helpful as patch leveling has always been an issue with my patches, but it's not a patch specific thing, which is what I was getting at.

I don't feel patch leveling is a part of the "tweaking experience." It's more of a mandatory chore that you have to do, after a fun bit of patch tweaking.
 

Tailstop

Inspired
Wow. That IS involved! I guess I'm lucky, in that too much amp switcheroo per song in my usage tends to convolute the cohesiveness of the song, so I don't do it. My personal presets are far easier to tonally manage.. I do have two patches where I use 3 amps and now that I've gotten that to work well I'm sure I'm off to doing 4! This machine is a rabbit hole!!
The main problem I come across is simply picking the amp and tone stack. I've never really given a damn about tonal authenticity so I end up dialing and seasoning my tones until I find something unique that works sonically. The moment I rehearse these tones live and discover any inconsistencies I love that I can go to a simple low-mid-high page and turn a knob now. Sweet...
 

BrainalLeakage

Experienced
I try to keep a "two amps max," per-song type scenario, and I try to use the scene controllers where necessary to get different gain levels. Of course, that's for live only, not the studio. It's no holds barred, in the studio. Sometimes I throw in a drive to get a bit more "more" when I need it. Whether that means a mid scoop, or boost, or a bit of extra hair, depends on the song. We've recently gone to automated patch changes with a click track (I sing lead, and play guitar, but I was also triggering backing tracks, and changing patches for both bass, and guitar, and it was just getting to be way too much for me to maintain a seamless show.)

My patch programming hangup is that we only have one Axe-FX for bass, and guitar, at the moment. I find ways to get around it, but there are few things I'd really like to be using now, but there's not just enough room in some of our patches. It's not stuff that detrimental to the overall tone. For instance, I'd like to have two amps, and cabs in some patches, just so there's not that tiny dropout between some amp changes. Other than that, I've used tube amps, and analog gear for most of my 22 years as a guitarist, so I usually know how to get the tones I want pretty quickly. I don't really try to mimic any particular gear either, but that's BECAUSE of my experience with the original gear modeled in the Axe-FX. I always found the "real" gear to be too limiting for my style. I tend to prefer a more "post production recorded" feel, which I can easily get out of the Axe-FX.
 

AronBaumel

New Member
Maybe.

I'm tired of chasing the past. It's time to create the present and the future. Everyone is hung up on recreating rather than creating. Chasing 30-year old tones. Meh.

You've got the biggest box of tools ever created for the guitarist. Every color and brush imaginable. Forget paint-by-numbers. Create your own masterpiece.

Therefore I'm not going to tell you what they are based on. Many people here need to start using their ears more and their eyes less.
I understand the sentiment, but a lot of us bought this magic box because we've been dreaming of being able to sound like our heroes for 30+ years... and now it's actually possible. For we bedroom warriors, I see nothing wrong with that.

Also, some of us are trying to crawl before we run and want to understand how each piece of the puzzle works in a way that we can relate to based on our own experiences and tastes. For me, going back and trying to recreate certain iconic tones is about trying to understand how all of the parts come together to create the whole so that I can apply the principals going forward. Some of us are trying to develop our ears, and "paint by numbers" helps us learn what's what.

In any event, thanks for this incredible tool set and for taking the time to constantly improve it and share your knowledge!
 

Horganovski

Inspired
I always found the "real" gear to be too limiting for my style. I tend to prefer a more "post production recorded" feel, which I can easily get out of the Axe-FX.
Isn't that exactly what one of the new features in FW17 does? The channel-style preamp in the cab section gives you just what you describe, something that sounds more like a recorded tone.
Then there's the improvement to power amp modeling, the improved flanger etc.

Sheesh.. some people are never happy :)
 

Scott Peterson

Global Moderator
Moderator
Trust your ears.

The people unhappy with something (anything) need to trust their ears. No matter what the GUI says, no matter what you "think" something needs to be in order to sound a certain way; cut through the complexity by simply trusting your ears.

How? Try something, turn it way up to hear what it does to the extreme. Roll it back till it sounds/feels good. Then check it on/off to see if it is better or worse. When you stop getting things 'better' then you are done. Then stop, play and don't look back. When given new tools, try them, do the 'better or worse' and then play. Stop tweaking, stop messing around and just play. If something inspires you; stop and play.

As for the whole 'live' vs. 'studio' preset concept, that's never held any water for me. Things either sound/feel good and inspire you; or they don't. Period. Good tone is good tone and can be used anywhere. Running direct-to-FOH means you have the *same* inspiring killer tones at the touch a toe. Done.

Seek simplicity out of complexity. Trust your ears. Stop tweaking. Play. That's my entire way of approaching this box. It has served me very well for nearly 8 years running.
 

Scott Peterson

Global Moderator
Moderator
I've done some preliminary A/B with Slate VCC and some UAD plugs.

The concept of the preamp and console EQ in the Fractal is great. But for me, the useful range of the drive and saturation could use some refinement. Once the preamp vu crosses the 0 point on the Fractal, the distortion sounds harsher than the plugins I regularly use.

Not a knock on the Fractal. I just find the drive and saturation controls have a limited range, 5 and under, or it doesn't sound good for what I do.
I did the same all through the beta cycle - having access (or owning) all the UAD and owning all the Slate plug-ins. They are a necessary tool for my recording and mixing.

I found the Fractal lends itself perfectly with a lot less mess and fuss to doing much (if not all) the same those plug-in's do and though different, I think the end result is that you have it in the box ready to roll now. I still love my Slate plug-ins and the UAD (my friend has everything UAD has out currently, I'm still an old school first-gen UAD-1 owner (have 3 cards running in my DAW). The Fractal are not 1:1 with any of the plug-in's; but the goal for me isn't anything other than to give musical 'traction' and inspire better end tones. I am very - VERY - happy with what V.17 does.

Don't use "O" as you do in the DAW, I found settings I liked best. See my thread on the starting points for V.17 for my thoughts and settings for more on that if you are interested.
 

Rex

Legend!
...Try something, turn it way up to hear what it does to the extreme. Roll it back till it sounds/feels good. Then check it on/off to see if it is better or worse. When you stop getting things 'better' then you are done...

Seek simplicity out of complexity. Trust your ears. Stop tweaking. Play.
This. This.

And This.


Scott: Superbly said.

Everybody else (me, too): Try this. It'll simplify your tone search. It'll increase your happiness. And it totally works.
 

rodzimguitar68

Fractal Fanatic
How? Try something, turn it way up to hear what it does to the extreme. Roll it back till it sounds/feels good. Then check it on/off to see if it is better or worse. When you stop getting things 'better' then you are done.

Seek simplicity out of complexity. Trust your ears.
This evening, I began my initial programming for our big Christmas Eve service. It was my first time with 17.0 and the pre-amps in the cab block. I did this approach before you wrote it, but wanted to repeat it again. The mic-pre's are new to the Axe, and since I was only experimenting, I tuned the drive and sat to settings I thought sounded good, until I returned them to zero, and like that sound better. I ended up with very minimal settings for drive and sat, but those minimalist settings did make my tone sound better than the settings on zero.
 

iaresee

Moderator
Moderator
Seek simplicity out of complexity. Trust your ears. Stop tweaking. Play. That's my entire way of approaching this box. It has served me very well for nearly 8 years running.
Yes!

You can't break it! It won't melt down or brown out! It might oscillate and take your ear drums out but hey, that's part of the fun right? Twist knobs. Flip switches. Play notes in between. The only way you'll understand what things do is to do them and then hear the change.
 
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