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Axe-Fx II "Quantum" Rev 5.02 Firmware Released

Lifestalker

Inspired
Actually, the placebo effect is quite common here, and has been for several years! You are in good company.
Completely agree. There are times where I can't tell a different to save my life. And then there are times when I'm like yes, I actually do hear and feel something different. Even if it's just a subtle change in character.

Placebo effect is absolutely a real thing. Cliff says, such and such sounds great, then all of a sudden it's all people talk about when the firmware is released. lol

If there was no mention of what was actually improved, it would be truly amazing if someone could pick it out.
 

Jason Scott

Forum Addict
Completely agree. There are times where I can't tell a different to save my life. And then there are times when I'm like yes, I actually do hear and feel something different. Even if it's just a subtle change in character.
If you want to determine whether you're really hearing a difference, re-amp the same dry track using two different firmware versions and line those tracks up in a DAW. Switch between them with your eyes closed at random and see if you can identify which track is which. If you can correctly identify which is which before opening your eyes 10 out of 10 times, then it's not the placebo effect.
 

Lifestalker

Inspired
If you want to determine whether you're really hearing a difference, re-amp the same dry track using two different firmware versions and line those tracks up in a DAW. Switch between them with your eyes closed at random and see if you can identify which track is which. If you can correctly identify which is which before opening your eyes 10 out of 10 times, then it's not the placebo effect.
I've actually considered doing that.

I play with a power amp/cab 99.9% of the time. Rarely do I use IR's, but I need to. Never know when I may need to use that option. Usually I'm just really happy with the way things sound and for the most part don't worry about noticing improvements since I trust Cliff's judgment.
 

Jason Scott

Forum Addict
Usually I'm just really happy with the way things sound and for the most part don't worry about noticing improvements since I trust Cliff's judgment.
Me too. I do A/B stuff other than firmware though, and I've found lining tracks up and randomly switching between them will bring out nuances that you'd otherwise never hear when two (or more) tracks are played back to back.
 

shredward

Regular
G'day Danny,

Really? That surprises me because I noticed it immediately - and you're 'all about tone'! :) .... 5.0 (To my humble ears) sounder 'smoother' than 5.02, using the Captain Hook amp introduced in 5.0 with a drive. 5.0 was just so enjoyable I got lost in it. I'm looking forward to trying AtomicBlaze's suggestion tonight.

Thanks
Pauly
I can't stop playing the Capt Hook Amp, its crazy good.
 
If you want to determine whether you're really hearing a difference, re-amp the same dry track using two different firmware versions and line those tracks up in a DAW. Switch between them with your eyes closed at random and see if you can identify which track is which. If you can correctly identify which is which before opening your eyes 10 out of 10 times, then it's not the placebo effect.
I've been interested in trying that, though in some cases, the difference is less in sound than in "feel," as your ear compares what came out of the speakers with the way your brain knows you just hit the strings. I have a friend with a Helix system, and he has some great sounds that--in some cases--might be indistinguishable from an amp sound I might get in terms of how it sounds to the listener, but playing it feels more "one-dimensional" and textureless. If I had two Axe FX units, I could load an identical patch in each, but two different firmwares, then run the same guitar through both, using an A/B pedal to switch back and forth.
 
Tried the Pi Fuzz. Not for me. Or maybe I don't know how to dial it in properly.
Hi. Yeah, this type of Fuzz is not for every application. I find it's best on a clean amp. It's too muddy if there is preamp distortion on the amp. I love me a good fuzz, though. I've even recorded them direct.

I have a Big Muff, plus the Soul Bender and a really cool boutique one called the Fuzzmite. Also one someone gave me made from a fuzz taken from inside a Vox Phantom. They're all a bit different, but they work better on a clean amp setting.

The typical '60s fuzzes work well playing single-note lines with a second guitar playing chords. The Pi Fuzz you could use to play chords with. I think the early Smashing Pumpkins had a Big Muff on some tunes.
 

Jason Scott

Forum Addict
I've been interested in trying that, though in some cases, the difference is less in sound than in "feel," as your ear compares what came out of the speakers with the way your brain knows you just hit the strings. I have a friend with a Helix system, and he has some great sounds that--in some cases--might be indistinguishable from an amp sound I might get in terms of how it sounds to the listener, but playing it feels more "one-dimensional" and textureless. If I had two Axe FX units, I could load an identical patch in each, but two different firmwares, then run the same guitar through both, using an A/B pedal to switch back and forth.
If feel is an important factor for a player(as it is for many), your idea (two units) has a lot of value. Personally, my primary interest is focused squarely on the auditory element, though I realize I'm probably in the minority.
 

hyderipper

Veteran
I should do a Tech Note on Preamp Bias. It's one of the main tools that amp designers use in voicing Marshall-style amps. For these amps you'll notice the amp gets tighter as you set Preamp Bias negative and chunkier for positive values. Too negative and things get thin and sputtery. Too positive and the lows get farty.
Well that's about all the Tech Note that I need :cool:
 

barhrecords

Axe-Master
Tried the Pi Fuzz. Not for me. Or maybe I don't know how to dial it in properly.
I'm long time Big Muff user and have a vintage one I really like. Mine is not one of the desirable "Triangle" or "Ram's Head" versions.

The real pedal is very touchy. It likes single coil pickups best. Even with SC's its a bass heavy beast. Different examples of these pedals are all over the map as to what the controls do at different positions. I'm guessing quality control and component values were not a priority. My real pedal's knob positions don't match the FAS version, but I would not expect it to either.

I tried the new FAS PI Fuzz last night. To my ears, the new one does sound a lot more like the real pedal. I couldn't crank it but was able to get an inspiring tone by using the pi fuzz in one of Brett Kingman's HiWatt presets.

Go to axechange and search for Author "Burgs"

I had drive at 5, tone at 8, low wind bridge pickup (Kinman) of a Strat.
 
If feel is an important factor for a player(as it is for many), your idea (two units) has a lot of value. Personally, my primary interest is focused squarely on the auditory element, though I realize I'm probably in the minority.
Nothing wrong with that -- what the audience hears is still the bottom line.

My first job as a teenager was working as a busboy at a Chinese restaurant. I remember the brothers who owned it telling me about the cooking academy in China where they learned. I was surprised to find out that "taste" wasn't the primary criteria for evaluating their food; in fact, it wasn't even in the top three: color, texture and aroma all came before taste. Most americans would probably put those criteria in a different order. But accepting that value-ordering for a minute, I think that for most players, tone is to guitar as color is to Chinese food. That "feel" I was talking about is like texture--not as big a deal as the tone, but an important criterion nonetheless.

Because for the audience, tone is probably like aroma, third in line after what notes you choose to play, how well you execute them, and how what you play works with what the other players are doing /what the song is going for.

So if my Axe FX tone onstage during a song is virtually identical to the Helix tone I'd get playing through my friend's rig, but I get a subtle "feel" of interacting with an organic tube amp through the Fractal that I don't get through the Line 6, then I'm going to feel inspired in a slightly different way, leading to my choosing different things to play, and thus, upping the level of the most important element for the audience, my playing itself.

OK, I think I've talked myself into a plate of Shrimp with Lobster sauce...
 

Lifestalker

Inspired
I'm long time Big Muff user and have a vintage one I really like. Mine is not one of the desirable "Triangle" or "Ram's Head" versions.

The real pedal is very touchy. It likes single coil pickups best. Even with SC's its a bass heavy beast. Different examples of these pedals are all over the map as to what the controls do at different positions. I'm guessing quality control and component values were not a priority. My real pedal's knob positions don't match the FAS version, but I would not expect it to either.

I tried the new FAS PI Fuzz last night. To my ears, the new one does sound a lot more like the real pedal. I couldn't crank it but was able to get an inspiring tone by using the pi fuzz in one of Brett Kingman's HiWatt presets.

Go to axechange and search for Author "Burgs"

I had drive at 5, tone at 8, low wind bridge pickup (Kinman) of a Strat.
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll give it a go!
 

barhrecords

Axe-Master
Just like my real life Muff! Try rolling your guitar volume back -- works so well with this model now. Muffs and lower output pickups are best IMO and the model is matching my opinion very well now.
I'm diggin the new version too. Hoping I get some time tonight to crank it in my studio to properly get acquainted. At low volume, I was well into David Gilmour territory and really got inspired.
 

Jason Scott

Forum Addict
So if my Axe FX tone onstage during a song is virtually identical to the Helix tone I'd get playing through my friend's rig, but I get a subtle "feel" of interacting with an organic tube amp through the Fractal that I don't get through the Line 6, then I'm going to feel inspired in a slightly different way, leading to my choosing different things to play, and thus, upping the level of the most important element for the audience, my playing itself.
For many players, feel and tone are the driving force that fuel inspiration, while for me it's always been tone almost exclusively. Interestingly, it's difficult for me to fully gauge the quality of my own tone while playing. I find I'm much more objective and capable of judging tonal quality when listening via a recording either through the Looper block or in my DAW.
 

barhrecords

Axe-Master
Interestingly, it's difficult for me to fully gauge the quality of my own tone while playing. I find I'm much more objective and capable of judging tonal quality when listening via a recording either through the Looper block or in my DAW.
This is normal.

Passive listening is different than active playing.

This phenomena is why you can listen to a recording, love it, download the preset, play it using a similar guitar and monitors, and still come away "wtf?".
 
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