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Axe-Fx III vs AX8

Cam

Inspired
I know this is very subjective but I've never heard the III or the AX8 and I value user opinions very much. Is the functionality and especially tone of the AFX III worth the extra $$$ ( and apparently the wait time for the FC 6/12 ) vs. the AX8..... Years ago had a couple early versions of the AFX and the FX8... liked them a lot but didn't love them. Irregardless of my situation.... if you have 1st hand experience, I'd really like your opinion. Thanks!!
 

chris

Legend!
I know this is very subjective but I've never heard the III or the AX8 and I value user opinions very much. Is the functionality and especially tone of the AFX III worth the extra $$$ ( and apparently the wait time for the FC 6/12 ) vs. the AX8..... Years ago had a couple early versions of the AFX and the FX8... liked them a lot but didn't love them. Irregardless of my situation.... if you have 1st hand experience, I'd really like your opinion. Thanks!!
the Axe2 and AX8 got a big modeling update this year, so the amp tones are better than ever.

if you want a portable solution that sounds amazing, get the AX8. if you want the most powerful solution, get the Axe-Fx III.
 
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Randy4Guitars

Forum Addict
I had the AF2 and the AX8. I never really used the AF2 because it was a lot to cart around, and the AX8 was so much easier to program than dealing with the MFC at the time. Kind of a no brainer.

I just sold my unused AF2 and got a AF3 and I'm going to be switching over to that when the FC comes out. The 3 sounds / feels a little better than the 2 but the difference between playing the 3 and the AX8 is pretty noticeable to me. I think FAS is making the FC similar to using the AX8, as far as setting up the footswitches, keeping my fingers crossed there. Plus there is a lot more room for different instances of effects in the 3, so I think I'll be able to do some things that I had to compromise on before. I'll probably keep the AX8 as a back up though. If that's all you got it's not too shabby at all. In fact I could probably be happy with just the AX8 but I'm semi-retired now and finally have time to do fun stuff.
 

boyedav

New here
I was weighing the same options. I ended up getting an Axe III, partly because I already have a Rocktron MIDI Raider footswitch that I can use, and because I plan to use a rack-based setup for my amp and power conditioner anyway. Plus, I'd rather someone spill a beer on my MIDI Radier than on an Ax8.

Also, I knew if I didn't like the Axe III (sound- and feel-wise) then I probably wouldn't like the Ax8. So, I went with the Axe III so that I'd have the latest tech with the most power if I ended up liking it, which I did.

I'm sure the Ax8 is just fine, but if you've got the money, go with the III, especially if you think it'll end up being your primary rig, versus just something more portable that you'll only use when the need calls for it.
 
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bshaw92

Inspired
I had both and tested them for many hours. If you've never tried the 3 the AX8 will be great. There is a noticeable difference in sound and feel. The 3 has the SAME bounce as your tube amps. The AX8 is close but not 100% there. The 3 is a different ball game than any of the previous forms. I have been using the Kemper since 2012 when it came out and have tried, owned and tried some more about every option that has come up. I liked the all-in-one configuration of the AX8 and ease, but after trying these and others out as well as A/B comparisons to my amps........ well, I have and use the 3.
 
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zenaxe

Fractal Fanatic
Both sound great, IMHO. They are two different beasts. I doubt the AX8 will receive tons of updates ala the flagship so consider it a mature floor solution that sounds great. The III is the big much more expensive cutting edge rack unit with all the features, bells and whistles and will likely continue to evolve and sounds amazing. Even if they both stopped development today, they'd be worth their price. You cannot go wrong; unless you get something else. ;)
 
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Cam

Inspired
OK I give, pretty apparent the III has had a profound effect on you all. Thanks for your input and Piing for the links. Money is not an issue thankfully. I'm retired and currently don't play out anymore. Sold off most everything 2 years ago and even gave up playing due to extreme burn out... Started practicing a few weeks ago and already have gig opportunities available in a month or 2.... Honestly not sure I want that anymore and wouldn't want to do it without the FC, except for maybe acoustic gigs. So for today anyway it's home use.
Again thank you all. very much.....
 

William Mims

Inspired
Get the III... the FC pedals are supposed to start shipping end of Dec through Jan unless something has changed...

I've had Kemper, Axe FX II XL+, AX8, and still have a Helix and Helix LT for those ultra portable moments... Axe FX III is the top dog!
 

Karl Houseknecht

Forum Addict
ithe gap between the new axe fx 3 and older platforms is getting bigger and bigger with each update.
When I get the new foot controller the III will replace my AX8 for live use. I love portability but am willing to sacrifice that for all the awesomeness the III brings :)
Same feelings here. As much as I love my AX8, I'm switching over to the III for the majority of my live playing once the FC ships. I'm probably going to also grab a second III and rack my other one permanently at my church. This is the platform that's going to get all of the development love over the next several years, and it's going to get it first, regardless of a successor to the AX8.
 

Matt_B_77

Forum Addict
Eh, I had an Axe FX Ultra for about 9 years and I was happy as a clam with it. I only replaced it with an Axe FX II because I got sick of dealing with the MIDI interface issues with the Ultra and I wanted the USB port on the II.

I'm sure the Axe FX III is amazing. Heck, there are some features in there I'd love to have (e.g. the Tri-Chorus) but I'm very happy with my Axe FX II XL+ and I'm getting an AX-8 for Christmas. The AX-8 will fulfill my needs easily and I'm sure I'll be happy with it for a long time to come.
 

gdgross

Veteran
What's the difference in the amp & cab modelling? I was under the impression that they had the same models, just less horsepower in the 8/II.

I'm thinking that's not true given the responses here?
 
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Karl Houseknecht

Forum Addict
What's the difference in the amp & cab modelling? I was under the impression that they had the same models, just less horsepower in the 8/II.

I'm thinking that's not true given the responses here?
There have been updates to the base modeling tech that aren't in the II or AX8. Granted, these are subtle in some cases, but in others there are observable differences.
 

lqdsnddist

Axe-Master
What's the difference in the amp & cab modelling? I was under the impression that they had the same models, just less horsepower in the 8/II.

I'm thinking that's not true given the responses here?

More horsepower, so to speak, equates to being able to run more powerful modeling algorithms, things like a cab block which can mix between 4 different IR’s etc.

Not night and day different, but still a gap, and likely to widen a bit as the III starts to mature
 

axifist

Veteran
The III and the AX8 are completely different beasts. Do you want a small rig? Take the AX8. Do you want a very powerful rig? Find a used II + MFC-101. Do you want an insanely powerful rig with years of updates? Take the III and hope for a fast delivery of the FC-6 or FC-12, whichever you'd prefer. Do you want a small, but insanely powerful rig with years of updates? Wait to see if Fractal releases a successor to the AX8.

Find out, what you want your rig to be like (or what exactly you dislike about your current rig), which features you need (or want) to have and of course you have to know how much money you can spend.

Comparing the III and AX8 seems very strange to me! I interpret such hesitancy as a sign, that you don't really know what you want yet.


One beautiful thing about buying online is the right to try things out and, if disliked, return them. Why not use this opportunity??
 
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Cam

Inspired
Comparing the III and AX8 seems very strange to me! I interpret such hesitancy as a sign, that you don't really know what you want yet.
Sadly my current rig is a leftover Quilter and a couple of crap pedals, resulting from the sale of a Jed Amp & Tucana 3R/FX8/Byron 212. I want an easier NON Tube rig with more functionality along with better flexibility, for all in home and potential lite band and acoustic duo gigging use. My main purpose for the post was to solicit experienced opinions on whether the $1700+/- price difference is worth the tonal and functional improvements, to those users. Maybe I should have stated it that way. Sorry for the confusion, but all the responses/ideas have helped me better re-phrase my original question and have moved my want/need more towards the III. For that I thank you all again.
 

Karl Houseknecht

Forum Addict
Given your requirements, if it were me, I'd go with the AX8. Extremely portable, smaller price tag. Pair that sucker with a Quilter Pro Block and 112 cab of your choice and you have a rig for the ages.
 

zenaxe

Fractal Fanatic
Based on the added info: With money not an issue and for home use only where portability is not a major feature, I'd go ahead and strongly recommend the III. It is a blast and can do anything, tone wise.

It is actually even easier to use in some ways, too, in spite of the added power.
 
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