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Is anyone using the FM3 for effects only? How are you liking it.

csgband

Inspired
Hello, is anyone using the FM3 for effects only? How are you liking it.
I use the AxeFx III for recording.
I am thinking of redoing my board with the FM3 with other pedals into an amp for live gigs.
I am interested in hear what people who are doing this think, good and bad.
Thanks for your input.
Chris
 

fcs101

Experienced
Hello, is anyone using the FM3 for effects only? How are you liking it.
I use the AxeFx III for recording.
I am thinking of redoing my board with the FM3 with other pedals into an amp for live gigs.
I am interested in hear what people who are doing this think, good and bad.
Thanks for your input.
Chris
@la noise might want to chime in...I think he actually prefers to keep the amp modeling on.
 

ethomas1013

Fractal Fanatic
My primary use of the FM3 is at church with IEM. But, I have tried it a few times both straight into the front of the amp ('62 Deluxe) and in 4 cable method (Redplate Blues Machine 66). No amp or cab block in the presets.

A few observations:
  1. Since one of the CPU cores is dedicated to the amp modeling and delays, you cannot get any more effects blocks into an effects-only preset than you can with the amp and cab in the preset.
  2. I'm not 100% sold on the drive block. Still prefer the sound from my drive pedals. I need to revisit this, but I prefer my real King of Tone and Nobels ODR-1 over the drive block.
  3. I'm not a big fan of Fuzz, but there has been lots of discussion about the FM3 input impedance in relation to the Fuzz models. Do a search if you are planning to use one of the Fuzz drive blocks
  4. There is some noise and coloration. Nothing to get too excited about, especially in the context of a band. But it is worth mentioning that the FM3 is not totally transparent
  5. Reverb, delays, modulation effects all sound great, as you would expect, when used with an amp.
  6. The recent changes to the I/O settings for input and output make it really easy to get your levels set correctly for 4 cable method
 

Tonedeaf

Experienced
My primary use of the FM3 is at church with IEM. But, I have tried it a few times both straight into the front of the amp ('62 Deluxe) and in 4 cable method (Redplate Blues Machine 66). No amp or cab block in the presets.

A few observations:
  1. Since one of the CPU cores is dedicated to the amp modeling and delays, you cannot get any more effects blocks into an effects-only preset than you can with the amp and cab in the preset.
  2. I'm not 100% sold on the drive block. Still prefer the sound from my drive pedals. I need to revisit this, but I prefer my real King of Tone and Nobels ODR-1 over the drive block.
  3. I'm not a big fan of Fuzz, but there has been lots of discussion about the FM3 input impedance in relation to the Fuzz models. Do a search if you are planning to use one of the Fuzz drive blocks
  4. There is some noise and coloration. Nothing to get too excited about, especially in the context of a band. But it is worth mentioning that the FM3 is not totally transparent
  5. Reverb, delays, modulation effects all sound great, as you would expect, when used with an amp.
  6. The recent changes to the I/O settings for input and output make it really easy to get your levels set correctly for 4 cable method
Have you turned off the power amp and used the amp models as "amp in a box"pedals? Curious about how that would work.
 

mxk116

Member
I use an FM3 with a Komet Ambikab Jr ala Pete Thorn in the following video (frankly that’s where I got the idea). I had the FM3 prior to the Ambikab jr and still use it as an amp modeler but like to use it for parallel modulation and delay effects. I have some pedals in front of my tube amps and the combination is wonderful. I could never use this rig live but at home it’s awesome.
 

mferrand

Inspired
I know this is sacrilege but I actually run an amp / cab to my tube amp. I have attached a preset that shows the signal path. Output 1 goes to FOH and Monitors. The Output 2 path has some considerable EQ and outputs to my Hiwatt SA112 (1x2 Combo). It has been suggested that I turn off the power amp modeling but I haven't noticed a huge difference.
 

Attachments

  • FM3-Hiwatt DR504.syx
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fractalz

Power User
Using it with a Blues Jr. amp for open mic/jams. Works great & super quick to set up.

fx only : chorus, phaser, delay, drive pedals.

wish I could get more use of the amp CPU though. I want to add a rotary but can't...
 

ethomas1013

Fractal Fanatic
Have you turned off the power amp and used the amp models as "amp in a box"pedals? Curious about how that would work.

I have not tried that, and have no plans to do so.

When it comes to amps and effects, I'm mostly a plug straight into the amp type of guy. I occasionally like to use a clean boost or something that does not have a lot of gain (hence the KoT and Nobels). I'm not one to mess with the amp tone too much. With regards to FX, when I have used the FM3 with amps it's primarily been trying the drives as a boost, an occasional use of wha, rotary, delay, or univibe. I really need to go back and spend more time with the FM3 and my amps to dial in the drives a bit better. I will say that I do like the FM3 drives, I just like the individual pedals better. It's when I go down the A/B comparison rabbit hole and get to analytical about the differences that I notice the differences the most. If I would just use the FM3 drives without the over-analysis I'd be fine.

Using it with a Blues Jr. amp for open mic/jams. Works great & super quick to set up.

fx only : chorus, phaser, delay, drive pedals.

wish I could get more use of the amp CPU though. I want to add a rotary but can't...

Odd. I just made a preset with two drives, wha, phaser, vol/pan, chorus, rotary, and delay. It's at 64% on the CPU. I can add a reverb block if I put it on economy mode. It's now at 75% CPU. I don't generally don't use reverb in a band setting at all unless I need it as a specific effect. For me, reverb is not an always-on effect. For that matter, I don't typically stack two drives so I would not include the second drive block in my own preset.
 
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csgband

Inspired
Wow, thanks for all the great comments.
I will now try running my AxeFx III straight into an amp.
If it works well I will get the FM3.
Lots of great options /
Thanks again.
 

unix-guy

Legend!
Odd. I just made a preset with two drives, wha, phaser, vol/pan, chorus, rotary, and delay. It's at 64% on the CPU. I can add a reverb block if I put it on economy mode. It's now at 75% CPU. I don't generally don't use reverb in a band setting at all unless I need it as a specific effect. For me, reverb is not an always-on effect. For that matter, I don't typically stack two drives so I would not include the second drive block in my own preset.
Depends on the effect type/model of each block, too.

Different Drive types can vary by 3-5% as an example.
 

ethomas1013

Fractal Fanatic
Sure, but he listed only four effects and said he couldn’t fit in the rotary. If that’s the case, something is clearly wrong.

For what it’s worth, I did cycle through a few different drive models that I know use more cpu and had no problems. I was at 64% with two drives and more stuff than he had. I think I had room to take an additional 3-5% hit on the drive blocks.
 

unix-guy

Legend!
Sure, but he listed only four effects and said he couldn’t fit in the rotary. If that’s the case, something is clearly wrong.

For what it’s worth, I did cycle through a few different drive models that I know use more cpu and had no problems. I was at 64% with two drives and more stuff than he had. I think I had room to take an additional 3-5% hit on the drive blocks.
Good point. It does seem odd... Although I have a memory that some of the Phaser types are more CPU heavy, but otherwise that doesn't seem like it should be a problem especially since the Delay runs on the dedicated Amp CPU.
 

fractalz

Power User
Good point. It does seem odd... Although I have a memory that some of the Phaser types are more CPU heavy, but otherwise that doesn't seem like it should be a problem especially since the Delay runs on the dedicated Amp CPU.
I'm running a compressor too.
 
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