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"lost notes" in chord voicings on Axe II

nvandyk

Member
Folks -

I write a lot of stuff using suspended chords and the like and have found that the clarity of the notes are almost completely lost in favor of the lowest note in the chord (typically an open D in drop D tuning, but same notion applies to an E tuned guitar).

For example, consider the following riff in drop D tuning.


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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--7-8---------7-8---------7-8-----8-10-------------------------------------------
--0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0--0-0-0-0-0-0-------------------------------


When i play this, the A string (the "higher" notes) are completely drowned out by the low D.

Another example from a different song (again in drop D), same issue (double click on the tab and it will bring it up).

sapphireriff.jpg

Through the Axe II -- on a variety of settings -- all you hear is the low D and some mud around it.

This is a real problem and I think it has less to do with EQ settings than it does with the actual signal processing of the modeler. However, I'm open to any and all solutions including a low-end rolloff or a parametric EQ to dampen the lower note -- though I think these is a pretty crummy solutions that I'd only use as a last resort because it's not that the low note is too LOUD, it's that there's no clarity in the different notes. Plus rolling off the low-end in a mix is quite a common thing to do to make room for the bass, but I've never seen it used to change the clarity of a chord voicing.

N.B. I tried this out on a friend's Axe II and had the same issue despite it being in a completely different setup.

Have not had this issue on other modelers or on actual amps.

Anybody else experiencing this, or have some suggestions? Very happy with the tone I've dialed in but I can't start tracking anything until I've solved this and I'm going stir crazy!

Thanks!
 

MattR

Inspired
What pickups are you using? String size? I have no problem getting note clarity on hi-gain patches with riffs like these.

Slight hi-pass filtering before the amp maybe?
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
Some example presets would be most helpful. A recording would also be helpful.

Some general tips. lower master volume and/or drive this will increase clarity. turn down speaker drive to minimum.

where are you master volumes set now and with which amp.

Also, try turning down low resonance. You can also move the Low res freq to get out of the way of the D.

Finally (and most importantly) cab choice is critical here. Experiment a lot with that
 

jimfist

Fractal Fanatic
(Some have already beat me to the punch, but I'll post anyway:| )

Please describe in detail your amp/speaker system and listening environment, as well as the guitar you are using and anything else that may have an impact on the sound being reproduced.

Also, what amp & cab blocks are you using, and could you post up the .syx preset file as well as a short recording clearly demonstrating the problem?

In the meantime, you should feel free to make a copy of the preset and experiment with precisely some of those "crummy" (just kidding) remedies, especially some of the amp block's advanced (lo-cut) parameters. There are many settings that could be altered which could result in an acceptable solution. I'm certain that others with more specific knowledge (than I have) will weigh in with some good ideas.
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
Turn off saturation. Up the mids, you have them almost all the way down. Lower master volume to 5 or below. Up the level to compensate. Lower the low frequency resonance.
You can try moving the lo res freq down to see if it gets out of the way of the other notes as well. turn off speaker drive. Use another mic than a kick drum mic.
 

nvandyk

Member
Aah, love the snarkiness!

I've recorded five CDs and I'm fully aware what a D112 is used for versus an SM57, for example. The Fractal team included the D112 on a unit used for guitars so I find it ironic (at best) that a Fractal administrator is mocking me for selecting it.

Nonetheless, here's the rest of what I was going to post. You will note that I observed the oddity of the mic selection and that fact that the problem occurs independently of it. Moreover, this occurs on a wide variety of settings.

----

Okay...so thanks for the feedback thus far.

As far as pickups, I have tried this on six separate guitars so I am getting the same results from DiMarzio, EMG, Duncan and Lundgren varietals.

I'm trying to replicate a Boogie tone (Triaxis Lead 2 Red) so the tone attached in my post above uses the Recto Red model with a 4x12 Recto V30 cab in mono hi-res mode. I'm using a D112 mic oddly enough but I get the same results from the 57 and other mics. Master volume is at 7 but I get the same results if it is further ducked (I am not a "turn everything to 11" guy).

---

Here's four clips on Sound Cloud.


The first riff in the attached file is the one at the top of this thread as recorded (using Boogie Mark IV and Peavey XXX heads for those interested in such things), the second clip is as recorded on the fractal. The third clip is the fractal version of the second riff above (the one with the miniatuarized tab), and the fourth clip is as recorded (compressed recording but it was a Peavey 5150 head).

I appreciate the feedback to the extent it is constructive.
 

symphx

Fractal Fanatic
I've recorded five CDs and I'm fully aware what a D112 is used for versus an SM57, for example. The Fractal team included the D112 on a unit used for guitars so I find it ironic (at best) that a Fractal administrator is mocking me for selecting it.

Nonetheless, here's the rest of what I was going to post. You will note that I observed the oddity of the mic selection and that fact that the problem occurs independently of it. Moreover, this occurs on a wide variety of settings.

----

Okay...so thanks for the feedback thus far.

As far as pickups, I have tried this on six separate guitars so I am getting the same results from DiMarzio, EMG, Duncan and Lundgren varietals.

I'm trying to replicate a Boogie tone (Triaxis Lead 2 Red) so the tone attached in my post above uses the Recto Red model with a 4x12 Recto V30 cab in mono hi-res mode. I'm using a D112 mic oddly enough but I get the same results from the 57 and other mics. Master volume is at 7 but I get the same results if it is further ducked (I am not a "turn everything to 11" guy).

---

Here's four clips on Sound Cloud.


The first riff in the attached file is the one at the top of this thread as recorded (using Boogie Mark IV and Peavey XXX heads for those interested in such things), the second clip is as recorded on the fractal. The third clip is the fractal version of the second riff above (the one with the miniatuarized tab), and the fourth clip is as recorded (compressed recording but it was a Peavey 5150 head).

I appreciate the feedback to the extent it is constructive.
true DAT!!! someone did put this MIC IN THE FRACTAL and I doubt many drummers use the AXE fx, maybe a DRUMZZZ fx is next?
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
The D112 wa put for bass mostly. It is not know for its mids (which is what you seems to be lacking). I couldn't hear the full mixes very well on my laptop. The signal level was too low.

I would start by using a different can and raising the mids on that patch, plus the other suggestions I gave. See if they help.
 

nvandyk

Member
Thanks, Sean, for the notes. They do help improve the clarity somewhat, although the fundamentals of the tone are now so different it doesn't really sound like the Triaxis that I'm attempting to replace. If we take Petrucci's tone as a starting place, that's a moderately scooped tone to begin with -- moreseo than my original patch.

Anyhow, I suppose I will tinker with it some more. In any case, I appreciate your help.
 

jimfist

Fractal Fanatic
just throwing this out there, but do these notes get "lost" with the AxeFx when you back off the drive/gain (cleaner) and flatten the mid range? Or are the still masked by the d string? Did you create this patch from scratch, from an initialized preset (all shunts), or was the starting point from a preset previously created?

From what I'm hearing, there seems to be something in the gain/saturation/EQ relationships. A lot of users find value in either "re-amping" or tweaking settings using the Looper, which makes comparison listening a little easier.
 

Dancing Frog

Inspired
What I am hearing based on the clips and playing with the patch is that the overtones of the low notes are being compressed with and drowning out the notes above. That points to the drive and master being a bit too high. I found that when I pulled down the master and drive quite a bit, I got back some clarity. Maybe a better solution, as someone else has suggested, is that you could put a slight highpass eq in front of the amp to turn down the bass and then put a make up eq behind the amp and restore the bass. That probably won't change the fundamentals of the patch as much as the drive and master settings.
 
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3Dhuman

Inspired
I've done very little recording and certainly don't claim to be an expert of any sort, but... here is your problem: guitar is a mid-range instrument. Scooping out mids as you've done may sound good at low-ish volumes on it's own, but gets completely swallowed up the moment you add other instruments or start playing loud. You NEED mids. They are the bulk of any good guitar tone. They are what allow you to "cut through the mix." This gets compounded with distortion (which you should also back down on if you want any sort of clarity). The Red channel on any Rectifier has so much available gain, there is no need to have it so far up (this goes for the Master as well). If you used these settings on a real Rectifier it would be completely un-listenable... as well as ear-splitting loud. Also, what works as a lead tone, will not usually sound good when your chugging away on the low E (or D, or C, as the case may be).

Less gain - more "chunk"
More mids - more "slice"
 

jdolll

Inspired
The accepted norm for heavy guitar sounds is the smiley face eq, which yes, does give you clarity when played by itself, in a mix you will not hear the guitar. This paradigm needs to be shaken out of heavy music guitarists, usually it will be by an engineer when recording at some point. And yes the d112 is used for recording heavy guitar sounds to give them punch, ONLY when tracked with other guitar tracks or double mic'ed with something else as well to give you the mid definition you are seeking. The advice in this thread is good, lose the smiley face eq, change your mic(or use another cabinet with something else in parallel, use the d112 cab at a low mix), or turn your gain down.
 
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Bumbleish

Inspired
When you cut the mids that severe on both amp & then the EQ, not to mention using a mic that enhances the lower D fundamental frequency further, you are basically taking away all the frequencies on the A & D string.
 

javajunkie

Moderator
Moderator
Thanks, Sean, for the notes. They do help improve the clarity somewhat, although the fundamentals of the tone are now so different it doesn't really sound like the Triaxis that I'm attempting to replace. If we take Petrucci's tone as a starting place, that's a moderately scooped tone to begin with -- moreseo than my original patch.

Anyhow, I suppose I will tinker with it some more. In any case, I appreciate your help.
Several people have done some pretty much spot on petrucci tones. I would look at the recording section and the preset exchange forum and see what they are doing. Mark Sfogli really got some great tones but I'm not sure if he has done that with the II.

I have heard several players get great note separation with that type of tone though.
 
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