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Lets talk about the "Depth" control

Matt Steele

Experienced
I want to talk about the depth control and primarily the default depth settings when loading up an amp.

How are the default values for the depth control selected for an amp? Is it a sweet spot helping to round out the lower frequencies of an amp? Where do you guys usually set the depth settings for your patches? How do you balance the low and depth settings of your patches?

I'm wondering and it's been bothering me because I'm finding I usually like the depth at zero on most of my high gain patches. Is it possible my impulses are simply more bass heavy and I need less depth?

I'm just generally curious why certain amps default with certain depth settings and if I should be ignoring this? I know I should just forget about it all and just use my ears, but I wanted to know everyone else's opinions on the "Depth" control to see if I'm missing something.

Thanks!
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
The default to that value either because the amp has a fixed depth at that level or it is where Cliff liked it.

Here is the info on depth (from the Wiki):

[h=2]DEPTH[/h]
  • Cliff: "Depth does not work at a Damping of 0 since Depth modifies the feedback and there is no feedback." Source
  • From the MIMIC whitepaper: "Note however that the taper of the presence (and depth) control can deviate from the actual amp. In our tests we found that the presence control on many amps did nothing for the first 80% of its rotation and all the action occurred in the last 20%. We feel that this design anomaly is undesirable and therefore did not model that aspect."
  • Cliff: "Depth = Resonance = "Whomp" = whatever colloquialism the manufacturer can think of. Depth differs from Bass in that it is applied in the power amp as opposed to the preamp. It is done by modifying the feedback network. Less lows are fed back thereby increasing bass response in the power amp. It is analogous to Presence except it affect bass instead of treble. If you look at the Axe-Fx II's menu you'll see the tab says "PWR AMP" thereby indicating it is a power amp control." Source
  • Firmware 15: "Improved Amp block feedback network accuracy especially for those amps that have depth networks. This causes the Presence and Depth controls to interact (as they would on a real amp) but yields greater realism."
" Cliff: "The effect of the Presence and Depth is consistent with the behavior of the real amp and depends on the amount of negative feedback. As you decrease negative feedback the presence and depth controls have less effect (as in a real amp). Also, as you increase Master Volume the presence and depth may appear to be less effective (key word is "appear") as the power amp distorts more and this masks the effect of the controls."
 

smcrosby

Power User
Hmm. I've been cranking the MV and dialing back the Input Trim and Sag on most models. Does that mean I'm missing out on some desirable Presence and Depth mojo?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
Hmm. I've been cranking the MV and dialing back the Input Trim and Sag on most models. Does that mean I'm missing out on some desirable Presence and Depth mojo?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
not really, since you are hitting the master volume with less signal by turning down the input trim. The more saturated the power amp section is, the more it will mask the effects of presence and depth.
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
I want to talk about the depth control and primarily the default depth settings when loading up an amp.

How are the default values for the depth control selected for an amp? Is it a sweet spot helping to round out the lower frequencies of an amp? Where do you guys usually set the depth settings for your patches? How do you balance the low and depth settings of your patches?

I'm wondering and it's been bothering me because I'm finding I usually like the depth at zero on most of my high gain patches. Is it possible my impulses are simply more bass heavy and I need less depth?

I'm just generally curious why certain amps default with certain depth settings and if I should be ignoring this? I know I should just forget about it all and just use my ears, but I wanted to know everyone else's opinions on the "Depth" control to see if I'm missing something.

Thanks!
Many amps have no depth circuit, e.g. Fenders, most Marshalls, and generally most older designs. In these cases the Depth knob will default to zero indicating the amp has no depth circuit.

Some amps have a fixed depth circuit, e.g. 5153, Freidman BE/HBE, Dirty Shirley, TripTik, Tucana, et. al. In these cases the Depth knob will default to a value that corresponds to the fixed circuit.

Finally some amps have a variable depth circuit, e.g. 5150, Diezel, et. al. In these cases the Depth knob defaults to a non-zero value that I think sounds good but that's just my taste.

The choice of IR and the monitoring system can greatly influence the amount of perceived bass. The desired amount of bass is a preference. If you are into "classic" tones then a Depth of zero would be a logical choice.
 

Matt Steele

Experienced
Many amps have no depth circuit, e.g. Fenders, most Marshalls, and generally most older designs. In these cases the Depth knob will default to zero indicating the amp has no depth circuit.

Some amps have a fixed depth circuit, e.g. 5153, Freidman BE/HBE, Dirty Shirley, TripTik, Tucana, et. al. In these cases the Depth knob will default to a value that corresponds to the fixed circuit.

Finally some amps have a variable depth circuit, e.g. 5150, Diezel, et. al. In these cases the Depth knob defaults to a non-zero value that I think sounds good but that's just my taste.

The choice of IR and the monitoring system can greatly influence the amount of perceived bass. The desired amount of bass is a preference. If you are into "classic" tones then a Depth of zero would be a logical choice.
Thanks Cliff. I very much appreciate you taking the time to reply.

I don't own all the amps in the Axe so I don't know for a fact which ones have depth controls and which ones do not. Thanks for listing some as examples. I fully understand the depth knob defaulting to zero on amps that do not have a depth control, but it's obviously more confusing knowing which amps should be left at their default depth setting to be authentic and those amps that are supposed to be variable.

As you said, I see the Depth control as a way to offset impulses that might be lacking in low end, but if I knew a certain amp (example 5153 did not know it should be at a fixed setting) was supposed to be set at a fixed setting to be authentic, I would leave the amp setting alone and adjust the end tone through impulses. I think it would be nice to know if that depth setting should be left alone for certain amps.

Thanks again!
 

jeppekristoffer

Power User
Thanks Cliff. I very much appreciate you taking the time to reply.

I don't own all the amps in the Axe so I don't know for a fact which ones have depth controls and which ones do not. Thanks for listing some as examples. I fully understand the depth knob defaulting to zero on amps that do not have a depth control, but it's obviously more confusing knowing which amps should be left at their default depth setting to be authentic and those amps that are supposed to be variable.

As you said, I see the Depth control as a way to offset impulses that might be lacking in low end, but if I knew a certain amp (example 5153 did not know it should be at a fixed setting) was supposed to be set at a fixed setting to be authentic, I would leave the amp setting alone and adjust the end tone through impulses. I think it would be nice to know if that depth setting should be left alone for certain amps.

Thanks again!
In The Axe II wiki, there is a list with all the available amps. For each amp the available controlls(in the real world) are listed. This means that you only need to check the wiki to see if your selected amp(in the real world) has a depth knob or not. If the Amp does not have a depth knob(in the real world) but the depth knob in the Axe is set to something else than zero then this amp has a fixed depth frequency.
 
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666was999

Power User
Try out the depth frequency setting as well when you don't seem to like depth at all. Maybe you like it at a lower frequency for harder sounds, avoiding mushy boomy lows ;-) !
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
I use depth when I want a beefier tone but the bass control makes things flubby. I lower the bass and slightly increase depth. It works very well for this. A little goes a long way here.
 

Matt Steele

Experienced
In The Axe II wiki, there is a list with all the available amps. For each amp the available controlls(in the real world) are listed. This means that you only need to check the wiki to see if your selected amp(in the real world) has a depth knob or not. If the Amp does not have a depth knob(in the real world) but the depth knob in the Axe is set to something else than zero then this amp has a fixed depth frequency.
Thanks! This is great to know. I will be checking out that info for every amp I use.
 

Jason

Member
An Engl Savage 120 has a "Depth Boost" switch instead of a depth knob. In the Angle Severe models, what Depth setting corresponds to the Depth Boost switch being on and off?
 

FractalAudio

Administrator
Fractal Audio Systems
Moderator
Thanks Cliff. I very much appreciate you taking the time to reply.

I don't own all the amps in the Axe so I don't know for a fact which ones have depth controls and which ones do not. Thanks for listing some as examples. I fully understand the depth knob defaulting to zero on amps that do not have a depth control, but it's obviously more confusing knowing which amps should be left at their default depth setting to be authentic and those amps that are supposed to be variable.

As you said, I see the Depth control as a way to offset impulses that might be lacking in low end, but if I knew a certain amp (example 5153 did not know it should be at a fixed setting) was supposed to be set at a fixed setting to be authentic, I would leave the amp setting alone and adjust the end tone through impulses. I think it would be nice to know if that depth setting should be left alone for certain amps.

Thanks again!
I look at the Depth knob as a starting point. Just because the 5153 has a fixed depth circuit doesn't mean you can't adjust the knob. The only reason that it is fixed on that amp is there wasn't enough room to put in separate knobs for each channel. The 50W version has an adjustable Depth (it's called resonance and the knob is on the back). The original 5150 had adjustable Depth. The designers choice isn't necessarily best. It depends on the cabinet (or IR) and your personal preferences.

Short answer: use your ears. I think too many people are scared to use their ears. But if you constantly rely on the ears of others you'll never learn how to create your own signature sound.
 

Hyper Planet

Power User
I look at the Depth knob as a starting point. Just because the 5153 has a fixed depth circuit doesn't mean you can't adjust the knob. The only reason that it is fixed on that amp is there wasn't enough room to put in separate knobs for each channel. The 50W version has an adjustable Depth (it's called resonance and the knob is on the back). The original 5150 had adjustable Depth. The designers choice isn't necessarily best. It depends on the cabinet (or IR) and your personal preferences.

Short answer: use your ears. I think too many people are scared to use their ears. But if you constantly rely on the ears of others you'll never learn how to create your own signature sound.
I think we should write down Cliff sentence with GOLD on the first page of this forum :

use your ears. I think too many people are scared to use their ears. But if you constantly rely on the ears of others you'll never learn how to create your own signature sound
 
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