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Cons to running Axe-Fx through traditional cab?

mmsim1

New here
Hey guys! Sorry if this isn’t the proper place to post this, but Before I commit to buying an axe FX of my own, I’m trying to iron out all the details beforehand to save some headaches. What are the cons of running axe FX through a traditional 4x12? Does it affect anything in a negative way? Positive way? As far as tone matching goes, is something FRFR required for it to sound correct?
 

chris

Legend!
main con is you're limited to that one cab, rather than modeling the Cab block and using different cab types there. i'm not sure if tone match works well with a real cab, since you'd have to mic the cab to get the live tone for matching. probably more hassle than it's worth?
 

mmsim1

New here
Is something along the lines of a clr easy to tame for inside volumes and still have a good sound to it?
 

GotMetalBoy

Forum Addict
Is something along the lines of a clr easy to tame for inside volumes and still have a good sound to it?
Yes, FRFR cabs work just like any other cab. You can use them at levels quieter than most tube amp lowest levels or as loud as a 4x12 or even a full stack. I use 2 Yamaha DXR powered FRFR cabs and I've used them to play small places and to compete with half stacks. The cool thing about them is that you can use them as a PA and to blast music through.

I used to use my Axe-Fx II with a power amp and Marshall 1960AV cab but have back problems, so I tried a powed FRFR cab because they're half the weight and size. I could never go back to using a regular cab.
 

paranoid

Fractal Fanatic
Playing with a power amp and cab blowing at your back is great. going to a gig with only your axe fx and guitar(no cabs to carry) is also great. If you have an axe fx you have the best for all means!
 

searching

Inspired
I haven't tried a FRFR cab yet. But I did a comparison of a mesa triaxis preamp, mesa fifty/fifty power amp, into a mesa recto 4x12 vs. the axe fx 2 (on a triaxis model with same settings), mesa fifty/fifty power amp, and mesa recto 4x12. The axe fx lost in that comparison. I attribute this to having to turn off cab sims and power amp sims in the axe fx. When playing through monitors with cab and power amp sims on, the axe fx 2 sounds just as good as the real thing does in real life.

In summary, the axe fx 2 works fine with a power amp and cab, but it really sounds best when you can use the cab and power amp sims and play through studio monitors. I'd say if you want to go old school and get a real cab and power amp then just complete the setup with a real tube pre amp or just get a traditional head and use the axe fx for effects only. If you want to take full advantage of the axe fx 2 then get a FRFR cab.
 

mmsim1

New here
If I decide on running a FRFR cab or monitors instead of a traditional cab, I don’t need a power-amp do I? Just straight axe-fx to monitors?
 

Jul

Inspired
Try a regular cab / amp or combo you may have on hand with cab sims (and even amp sims on) - it may be sacrilege ... but if you like the way it sounds so be it.. Caveat: If you are going to use an AxeFX then you gotta have an amp of some kind
 
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If I decide on running a FRFR cab or monitors instead of a traditional cab, I don’t need a power-amp do I? Just straight axe-fx to monitors?
As long as the speakers are powered you don't need a separate power amp. For instance, I run my axefx into a matrix gt1000. The left out goes to a 2x12 traditional cab, the right out goes to a 1x12 passive xitone (FRFR wedge). If I had spent the couple hundred extra on the powered xitone then I could run that without the power amp.

As far as downsides... Yes you basically lose the ability to use cab modeling effectively and are locked in to that particular cab sound. Personally I don't see that as so much of a bad thing because I love my cab and it gets me all the tones I need. On the other hand, the downside of frfr is that it will never sound and feel exactly like a traditional guitar cab in the room. So yes, you have hundreds of factory cabs available and limitless third party... But none of them are going to equate to using that physical cab in the room.

Personally I enjoy having both options available. Your particular use case, needs, and preferences should dictate which you use.
 

mmsim1

New here
The option of keeping both options would be a win-win in my opinion. I think what I’ve decided on is to start out with the axe FX and a nice pair of Adam powered monitors as my initial investment, then eventually get a matrix poweramp to run though my 4x12.
 

BBN

Fractal Fanatic
As others have mentioned, there is nothing negative about running through your 4x12 cab.
It works, it sounds great, and it's a sound you'll be used to.

There are however positives about trying FRFR. (ie. trying different Cabs in the Axe to get a larger variety of tones).
Running through a set of Adam monitors sounds like an excellent step.
 

80sMetalDude

Inspired
OP: I didn't read this entire thread but I can tell you from my experience as a fairly new AX8 owner that it plus a good FRFR speaker setup unlocks magic.

Once you experience it oh boy. Cannot believe just how much cab IRs do to the tone just unreal. Use one guitar cab and you are locked to that tone instead of the world of IRs you could be using. Of course you can still use IRs on a traditional 4x12 but you will have to tweak all your patches to keep from being very hooky.

I personally got a Friedman ASM12 and never looked back.
 
OP: I didn't read this entire thread but I can tell you from my experience as a fairly new AX8 owner that it plus a good FRFR speaker setup unlocks magic.

Once you experience it oh boy. Cannot believe just how much cab IRs do to the tone just unreal. Use one guitar cab and you are locked to that tone instead of the world of IRs you could be using. Of course you can still use IRs on a traditional 4x12 but you will have to tweak all your patches to keep from being very hooky.

I personally got a Friedman ASM12 and never looked back.
See this is the part of frfr vs cab that I disagree with. For recorded tones, or sending signal to FOH, absolutely using a traditional cab can lock you into that one cab and all that. But for playing/jamming, you can't use either setup to mimic either setup. So yes with frfr you do get a ton of different tonal options, but none of them will sound or feel exactly like using a traditional cab.

Basically I understand the sentiment, I just don't agree with the semantics if it. It's one of the most widely used comparisons though and it just scratches a nerve every time I read it.

Personally I just run two outputs so one goes to cab for jamming since I'm playing along side anther guitarist with a traditional rig, then two gets setup with an IR and tweaked for demo recording tone.

I have a 112 xitone and think it's the bees knees... But it's not a comparison against my 2x12, they are just different animals for different arena's. I also don't feel limited in tone when using my 2x12, maybe that's just me
 

guitarmike

Veteran
There are also some negatives to running frfr, if the frfr cab is not truly frfr. And many are not. If you can get a clr or one of the xitones, or even the yamaha's, you'll probably be just fine because they are pretty flat. But if you go for something cheaper you may run into problems because they are not truly flat. I have a pair of Ev's but I have to eq them a little to sound right. My yamaha studio monitors sound pretty good, a 4x12 is great with a nice solid state amp, ...and easy to dial in.

The point is, do not to skimp on the frfr.
 

Shenks

Veteran
The point is, do not to skimp on the frfr.
Very true, if you consider you have a high quality system in the Axe FX then why would you ruin the experience by using cheap, poor quality, or unsuitable speakers? Financial considerations or restrictions may make you initially think 'I will manage' but you will miss out on soooo much.
 

80sMetalDude

Inspired
@OP I hear you and I own a 4x12 and a boggie 50/50 and both setups will sound great that I own... ASM12/AX8 with IRs/ASM12 or AX8 to Boogie thru 4x12.

I played them side by side L/R channel and tough to pick a winner.
 
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