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FM9 FAQ

hippietim

Fractal Fanatic
Where can I find the FM9 Owner’s Manual, Fractal Audio Blocks Guide, and Fractal Audio Footswitch Functions Guide?
https://www.fractalaudio.com/FM9-downloads/

Can the FM9 load presets from the Axe-Fx III and FM3?
The FM9 has a lot of power and can load many Axe-Fx III presets directly by importing them using FM9-Edit. Note that exceptionally large presets may need to be reduced in size/CPU before they will run on the FM9. Also, recognize that the Axe-Fx III has a larger block library, so certain blocks (i.e. Plex 2, Synth 2) will not import at all.

Can the Axe-Fx III and FM3 load presets from the FM9?
Yes, you can import FM9 presets on these devices by using the editor software. Note that larger FM9 presets may need to be reduced in size/CPU before they will run on the FM3. Also, the FM3 has a slightly smaller grid size of 12x4.

How many blocks can I have in a preset?
It depends on which blocks you select. Some, like Volume and Filter, require very little CPU power, whereas others, like Synth, Pitch, and Plex Delay require much more. It’s easy to create large presets with more than twelve blocks. The FM9 manual includes tips to conserve CPU.

How many Amp and Cab blocks are there?
Each FM9 preset can use two Amp Blocks and two Cab Blocks (plus many other blocks; see above). One advantage of using two amp blocks is that switching between them is perfectly seamless.

Are the Amp block controls in the FM9 the same as the Axe-Fx III?
Yes, with just a few minor differences, the FM9 has all of the parameters of the Axe-Fx III.

Can I run high quality Reverbs?
Yes, you can simultaneously run two reverb blocks at “Ultra-High” quality on the FM9.

Does the FM9 have Global Blocks?
No, only the Axe-Fx III has Global Blocks. However, FM9-Edit makes it easy enough to copy-paste one block across any number of presets when you need to do batch updates.

Can the FM9 do Tone Matching or IR capture?
No, the Tone Matching and IR Capture features of the Axe-Fx III are not included on the FM9. However, Tone Matches and IR Captures exported from the Axe-Fx III can be loaded in the Cab block of the FM9.

What about expression pedals and external switches?
The FM9 has three pedal inputs. Each one can connect to either an expression pedal or a single footswitch. (The FM3 allows two footswitches per pedal input on a “Y” cable, but in comparison, it has only two inputs rather than three like the FM9.)

What about the FC-6 and FC-12 Foot Controllers?
The FM9 can host up to two FC controllers. The FC is an advanced controller with all of the same features as the nine onboard switches of the FM9. In addition, each connected FC supports another four expression pedals AND four external switches.

I want to use a real cabinet on stage but I want to go direct into the PA, does the FM9 support this?
Yes. You can do this by utilizing the separate outputs on the FM9. Section 4 of the Owner’s Manual covers this and many other different setups.

Can the FM9 connect to a tube amp via the 4 cable method?
Yes. You can do this by utilizing the separate outputs on the FM9. Section 4 of the Owner’s Manual covers this and many other different setups.

Does the FM9 have onboard relays for amp switching?
No, the FM9 does not have onboard relays but it can transmit MIDI messages to a 3rd party amp or a dedicated relay switcher such as the RJM Amp Gizmo.

Does the FM9 have Performance Control pages like the Axe-Fx III and FM3?
Yes! These allow the onboard knobs to be used as assignable soft controls so you can simulate the knobs on your favorite amp and/or pedals for quick adjustments while performing.

Can I record the FM9 directly to a computer via USB?
Yes. The FM9 is a 8x8 USB audio interface capable of both audio playback and recording. You can record processed guitar, process USB audio, play backing tracks, reamp via USB, and more. See Section 3 of the Owner’s Manual for additional details.

How do I play along with songs and backing tracks?
It’s easy! You can connect your iOS, Android, PC, or Mac via USB and play through the FM9 audio device. Note that you may want to go to SETUP:I/O : USB and turn down the level initially for USB 1/2.

Is the FM9 a USB MIDI device?
Yes! USB also provides the FM9 with 8×8 USB audio capabilities when connected to a compatible Mac or PC for use with FM9-Edit, Fractal-Bot, a DAW or other audio applications.

In FM9-Edit, how can I tell what text will fit in the footswitch Mini-Displays while I am editing Scene or Preset names?
Click the “10” button in FM9-Edit !!! This handy feature highlights the text that will fit in the mini-displays.

Since the FM9 has two amp and cab blocks and grid size, isn’t it just like the Axe-Fx III?
The FM9 firmware and hardware (including audio signal) path are based on those of the Axe-Fx III. The unit sounds fantastic and meets the high standards of Fractal Audio Systems. The FM9 is a real powerhouse, with a quad-core DSP, but the AxeFx-III still has considerably more processing power, extra blocks for preset building, larger memory for presets, cabs, and delays, additional physical inputs and outputs, Tone Matching, IR Capture, and more. Still, many Axe-Fx III presets will run on the FM9 with no modification.

How does the FM9 compare to the FM3?
  • The FM9 uses a 4-core DSP. The FM3 uses a 2-core DSP.
  • The FM9 allows two amp blocks and two cab blocks per preset. Its delay and other blocks currently have all of the features of the Axe-Fx III instead of a subset. For other differences in blocks, please see the Fractal Audio Systems Block Guide.
  • The FM9 has 9 footswitches versus 3 on the FM3.
  • The FM9 has a 14x6 grid for effects blocks versus 12x4 on the FM3.
  • The FM9 has five inputs and six outputs, plus SPDIF digital in and out. The FM3 has three inputs and four outputs and SPDIF out only.

Does the FM9 support a 3rd MIDI controller similar to the Axe-Fx III and FM3?
Yes, it does support the same “Third Party MIDI Spec” with a different device ID (11h versus 10h). So, for instance, the SET/GET BYPASS command looks like "F0 00 01 74 10 0A id id dd cs F7" on the Axe-Fx III and "F0 00 01 74 12 0A id id dd cs F7" on the FM9.

When is the FM9 shipping?
The first batch of FM9s began shipping on the day the unit was announced. Regrettably, during a global semiconductor shortage, supply is not expected to be able to meet demand, so the unit will soon require a waitlist. The next batch is expected to be ready to ship in October, with more units to follow on a continual basis after that. To join the waitlist or for additional information, see https://www.fractalaudio.com/fm9

What about Europe and the rest of the world?
Fractal Audio Systems will ship some quantity of units domestically in the USA and Canada before sending any units to its dealers in other countries. The details of this are communicated to the dealers and they can keep you up to date about when you will be able to order the FM9.
 
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sarge

Experienced
I haven't been this excited about a new product since the Axe FX II.

If this has been covered somewhere else I apologize for asking, but do we know if it will have the III's pitch block or the FM3's?
 
"TWO amp blocks with four channels each. (Up to eight models per preset.) Allows layered tones, stereo amps, instant switching, and more."

Does this mean I can use two amps at once? For example: can I use the sound of a Mesa Boogie and Diezel simultaneously?
 
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rossipedia

Experienced
"TWO amp blocks with four channels each. (Up to eight models per preset.) Allows layered tones, stereo amps, instant switching, and more."

Does this mean I can use two amps at once? For example: can I use the sound of a Mesa Boogie and Diezel simultaneously?
From everything I can tell... yes.
 
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