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Experienced users! Tips and tricks for new Axe user, please?

chucma

Fractal Fanatic
What do you know now and use daily that you wish someone would have told YOU day one?

Congrats Scott! Question here though, are you getting an MFC101 with your XL? There are a lot of things I know now that I wished I knew from the start regarding the MFC. It is such an amazing controller once you know how to use it.
 

zenaxe

Fractal Fanatic
I'm getting a new car tomorrow. Please tell me everything you guys have learned about driving.
 

Steinmetzify

Inspired
Use the Enhancer block in modern mode. The Enhancer is your friend. :D

Marked, dude. Thanks!

Congrats Scott! Question here though, are you getting an MFC101 with your XL? There are a lot of things I know now that I wished I knew from the start regarding the MFC. It is such an amazing controller once you know how to use it.

Am not sir, not yet anyway....using this for recording and practice, so didn't really see a need for it. I have a GSP1101 atm with the C2 foot controller and I never use the thing, even though it works fine. Seeing the future possibility though, so thanks.

Use the VU Meters on the front panel (Utility - Page over) to balance your preset volume.

Also marked, thanks!
 
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JCBitB

Inspired
Most of my "Aha!" moments have been in the cab block more than anywhere else. Motor drive is so crucial to getting the juices flowing, and I like to set the mic to "null" and use the proximity control before I touch the bass/depth knobs in the amp block. You should also plan on researching cab packs and IR'S from ownhammer.

You'll get different advice based on what genres you play also. Give specifics, get specifics. People love to gush about their recipes for secret sauce :)

As for forum advice, don't mind the trolls. The community here is one of the best, but there's some in every group. They're harmless and would probably buy you a beer if you saw them in person
 

Poozer79

Member
I just got my XL+ yesterday! (literally had to chase down the UPS guy because he tried to take off without even buzzing my apartment!) For myself, I found Cooper's classes on creative live really helpful.
 

Steinmetzify

Inspired
Most of my "Aha!" moments have been in the cab block more than anywhere else. Motor drive is so crucial to getting the juices flowing, and I like to set the mic to "null" and use the proximity control before I touch the bass/depth knobs in the amp block. You should also plan on researching cab packs and IR'S from ownhammer.

You'll get different advice based on what genres you play also. Give specifics, get specifics. People love to gush about their recipes for secret sauce :)

As for forum advice, don't mind the trolls. The community here is one of the best, but there's some in every group. They're harmless and would probably buy you a beer if you saw them in person

Right on, I'll make sure the cabs are something I give some time to messing with. Thanks for your input man.

I just got my XL+ yesterday! (literally had to chase down the UPS guy because he tried to take off without even buzzing my apartment!) For myself, I found Cooper's classes on creative live really helpful.

What a rat bastard! He probably wanted it for himself! Interested in your first impressions, man. Congratulations!
 

lqdsnddist

Axe-Master
Sorry I bothered you. To ask about the Axe on an internet forum dedicated to the Axe is probably the height of stupidity...although, it's rivaled by someone coming into a topic that annoys them to post about how much it annoys them. Always at least one on every forum, though.

EDIT: If your reply was meant in jest, my apologies...sarcasm without smileys doesn't translate well to me. Have a great day.


One good bit of advice is that its better to simply ignore those responses you find offensive. If/when you respond to any slights, be it perceptual or intended, it can make you look like kind of a jerk, even if the other guy "started it".

Obviously one wants to stick up for themselves, I get that, but the net result of sarcasm, self-mocking, attacking back et al., is that it derails a threads purpose can give you the perception of feeling entitled and makes people less inclined to want to help you.

Again, I'm not saying your in the wrong, but you have to ask yourself what you came here for; to get useful information, or to do a bit of chest thumping with strangers on the internet ?
 

Narzugon

Power User
IMHO the single best advice that is normally over looked is "Keep it Simple". Especially starting out. Just because it has a million knobs doesn't mean they all need tweaking! While I completely get these threads (I was new once as well) in the end it's like trying to sip from a fire hydrant. And that can possibly lead to frustration.

The real power of the Axe is in it's ability to mimic (pun intended) or simulate real tube amps. So just treat it as such. Plug in, find an amp you like and turn the basic knobs that you would on a real amp. As stated above, get the basic sound and add effects from there just as you would in the real world.

I picked up an Axe in 2009 and still find great tips on these forums.
 

paranoid

Fractal Fanatic
when I got my axe the first day was going up through the presets with a note pad and making note of the factory presets I liked best. then I moved bank a back to d(axe XL) and then moved the ones I liked best one at a time to bank a and studied how they were put together and built from there. but when you start to build please try to balance all your work as you build it volume wise and scene wise effects wise. what I mean is if you build a preset with scenes in it level the volume of all scenes and preset also I set up all my presets in song structure(scene 1 intro scene 2 verse scene 3 chours scene 4 lead kinda thing that way I know in any preset scene 4 is for the lead). you can also set them up clean rhythm lead or what ever but if you make a plan at the start it is way easier later!!!!!!!! good luck and welcome to the club that has no audio bounds.
 

Steinmetzify

Inspired
One good bit of advice is that its better to simply ignore those responses you find offensive. If/when you respond to any slights, be it perceptual or intended, it can make you look like kind of a jerk, even if the other guy "started it".

Obviously one wants to stick up for themselves, I get that, but the net result of sarcasm, self-mocking, attacking back et al., is that it derails a threads purpose can give you the perception of feeling entitled and makes people less inclined to want to help you.

Again, I'm not saying your in the wrong, but you have to ask yourself what you came here for; to get useful information, or to do a bit of chest thumping with strangers on the internet ?

Good point. Edited and added the guy to my ignore list. Thanks for the advice.

IMHO the single best advice that is normally over looked is "Keep it Simple". Especially starting out. Just because it has a million knobs doesn't mean they all need tweaking! While I completely get these threads (I was new once as well) in the end it's like trying to sip from a fire hydrant. And that can possibly lead to frustration.

The real power of the Axe is in it's ability to mimic (pun intended) or simulate real tube amps. So just treat it as such. Plug in, find an amp you like and turn the basic knobs that you would on a real amp. As stated above, get the basic sound and add effects from there just as you would in the real world.

I picked up an Axe in 2009 and still find great tips on these forums.

Sounds like a good way to start. Appreciated.
 

chucma

Fractal Fanatic
@ chucma
Yes, assume the OP is getting the MFC101 with the Axe.
What are your MFC101 tips?

Am not sir, not yet anyway....using this for recording and practice, so didn't really see a need for it. I have a GSP1101 atm with the C2 foot controller and I never use the thing, even though it works fine. Seeing the future possibility though, so thanks.

Ok well, I know you are not getting the MFC101 but for sonofmickel's request and for the chance that you 'might' get one in the future, these are some of the things that I took a long time to figure out. They are all in the Manual, Wiki, Cooper, Chris's blog and various Forum threads but I found when I was still on such a steep learning curve in the beginning that it took me longer to find/understand them:

My learning curve summarised:
  • The MFC101 due to std MIDI limitations will stop scrolling through presets at preset #384, after that it returns back to #001. The best way for me to get around this was to move Bank A factory presets to preset #385 onwards, and create all my own presets in Bank A. It took me a while to figure this out because I wasn't sure if there was a more official/formal way around this, however this seems to be what a lot of guys prefer to do. Cliff did provide a way using TXMaps to map each preset individually but I found it was easier/simpler to use Bank A rather.

  • Golden rule, don't use the MFC101 at the same time as using Axe-Edit. You might end up saving a preset/scene incorrectly (i.e. a block could be enabled on the MFC101 and not in AE which could confuse you). I realised this after a few botched patches and it does state pretty clearly in the manual not to use the MFC with Axe Edit.

  • I now use the Bank Style on the MFC101 to allow me to scroll through banks without changing the current patch, and only when I select the specific preset (IA 1 - 5 buttons) then it changes the preset. My MFC101 did not default to that.

  • For a boost, I started using PEQ (then later a Filter block), but that was a pain because I had to set it up for each patch. Then I found this video on Chris's site and have never looked back (second method which starts at 4m43s:
    https://youtu.be/Db8Jlltmdus?t=4m43s
    From Chris's site: Free Tutorials and Videos | AxeFxTutorials.com

  • To make the Looper work across multiple patches, make sure you have the Looper block in the exact same position in the layout, and use a Copy/Paste of the Looper block to ensure it is exactly the same for each preset otherwise it might not work. I use Axe Edit and have saved a Looper block in the library, so I just recall this for each preset. Also, see the manual for more info (http://www.fractalaudio.com/downloads/manuals/mfc-101/MFC-101-Looper-Control-Mode.pdf)

Anyway, now that I look back, these things are pretty obvious now but if anyone asks for useful info about starting off with the Axe then I think I would give them that. :)

Don't forget the Wiki, very useful and gets updated regularly.

EDIT: These are just a few of my choice things that I learned, there are a heck of a lot more things that you will learn as you get more familiar with the units
 

Poozer79

Member
It is by far the best piece of gear I've ever purchased. I spent most of my time going through and messing with all of the factory presets yesterday. I'll have to get back to you on it being that I'm only listening through a pair of mediocre headphones right now but, even with that it still sounds pretty damn good. I'm hopefully going to pick up a pair of Yamaha HS 8's fairly soon here.
 

JCBitB

Inspired
IMHO the single best advice that is normally over looked is "Keep it Simple". in the end it's like trying to sip from a fire hydrant.

Pure gold. You're going to want to make a pure amp to cab patch, and forget all our advice for a month while you get lost learning the subtle differences between 200 amps. Then you can start in on the cabs :)

The AFXII is just one of those things where I flip it on fully intending to learn something, and then I forget all about it and get stuck in the noodling timewarp. All of this will come in handy when the honeymoon is over!

I'll have to get back to you on it being that I'm only listening through a pair of mediocre headphones right now but, even with that it still sounds pretty damn good. I'm hopefully going to pick up a pair of Yamaha HS 8's fairly soon here.

Bet you've got a home theater receiver with some rca inputs :) snag some 1/4" to RCA converters and let her rip! It only gets better when you're really movin some air and getting that guitar to actually hear (and resonate with) all that noise it's makin.

You guys have some fuuuuun times ahead :)
 
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Steinmetzify

Inspired
All good things guys. I'll take all this into account and refer back here often. Much appreciated, and here's to great metal tones end of the month! So friggin STOKED!
 

Severed

Fractal Fanatic
1. use the looper block 1st thing, on a parallel row @ 100% mix, to dial in and tweak patches.
2. If gigging try to tweak at gig volume on the same system you will be gigging with.
3. Stereo and mono. If you decide to go stereo, make duplicates of your patches that work for mono or work with mono, especially if you are gigging and using house/Venue systems.
4. I Do not keep it simple. IMO we didn't buy the Axe-Fx II to keep it simple. Explore. Think outside the box. The sky is the limit. You can't blow a tube or a fuse or a speaker. Controllers and modifiers offer so much customization and real time control it can be overwhelming, but if you want the most out of the Axe, IMO you really have to dig in to this part of it.
5. Back up often. Nothing is more debilitating than accidentally saving over a preset you don't have a backup of.
6. Using Axe Edit, save blocks as well as presets. When you save a block, It saves all the settings in which you can then recall in another preset, or share with other users. This will also help you build your own library of settings. Do it when you download and try other peoples presets off Axe-Change too or even from the factory presets. That way you can build a huge library of settings, allowing for some really quick preset building.
 
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Muso4142

Member
It is by far the best piece of gear I've ever purchased. I spent most of my time going through and messing with all of the factory presets yesterday. I'll have to get back to you on it being that I'm only listening through a pair of mediocre headphones right now but, even with that it still sounds pretty damn good. I'm hopefully going to pick up a pair of Yamaha HS 8's fairly soon here.

Prepare to loose a few weeks of your life! ha ha (& thats just the beginning!) :nightmare:
 
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