1. Recent events require us to remind our members that this is a privately owned, run and supported forum. You are here at the invitation and discretion of the owners. As such, rules and standards of conduct will be applied that help keep this forum functioning as the owners desire. These include, but are not limited to, removing content and even access to the forum.

    Please give yourself a refresher on the forum rules you agreed to follow when you signed up.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. July 27 2018 - support.fractalaudio.com is temporarily down for updates. Please use this forum for support or see the "News" section here for additional details. Thank you.
    Dismiss Notice

One Month In...

Discussion in 'Axe-Fx II Reviews' started by Grahammm, Aug 31, 2017.

  1. Grahammm

    Grahammm
    Expand Collapse
    Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    LA, CA
    So, I picked up a B-stock Axe II XL+ about a month ago. I recently moved into a house after living in apartments the last fifteen years. I knew I would finally be able to set up a "studio" so I pulled the trigger before I left and set it up as soon as I moved in (before setting up my bed actually). Knowing that I will never gig with it as I'm just a bedroom player, I went with the studio monitor option and picked up some Yamaha HS8's, as they seemed to be a good price and got good reviews for the most part.

    Now, I'm one month in and all I can say is... this is it. This is the single greatest piece of gear I've ever purchased. So many times I've picked up amps that I liked but never loved. Granted, I always had to play at lower volumes in the apartments I lived in, but they still never left me in awe. The Axe does. Every time I plug in, I learn something new about it. I took a week or so to study the thing and get to know my way around Axe Edit. I downloaded a few cab packs, but I have honestly had more fun just dialing in tones on my own. I will say though, I love the stuff ML Sound Lab puts out. I have used quite a few of their cabs in the patches I've been making. The Friedman HBE seems to be my go to so far for high gain. There's something just right about it. It really seems to play nicely with the Alpha/Omega Duncan's I have in my guitar.

    The Yamaha's are really good too. I know there are better options, and I did a ton of research before both on this forum and other sites, but I'm really happy I went with these. I can't imagine what higher quality monitors would sound like if these have impressed me.

    Well, that's it. Mostly just wanted to give a simple "review" and say thanks to Fractal Audio for creating such an incredible piece of gear.
     
  2. Teej

    Teej
    Expand Collapse
    Regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2014
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    78
    Location:
    Wisconsin, USA
    Welcome to the family! I feel the same way, my Axe II is the best peice of gear I've ever owned and I think it has actually saved me money in the long run. I have bought exactly zero pedals and amps since. A guitar here and there, and a couple cabs, but most of that has been in trade for stuff I don't use anymore.

    I have the old version of the HS8s, the HS80s, and they are incredible monitors. VERY little coloration to what it played through them. They aren't "budget" by any means but they certainly are lightyears from the most expensive you can get. I recently (finally) got some monitor stands for them and they now sound even better.

    If you want to have some extra fun in the future, get a power amp and plug into a regular guitar cab with cab sims turned off. Its amazing how "real" the axe feels when you go that route as well.
     
    Grahammm likes this.
  3. Grahammm

    Grahammm
    Expand Collapse
    Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    LA, CA
    I definitely want to try the cab/power amp combo. I've had my eye on some Port City cabs, so I'll probably try them out in the near future.

    I also have my HS8's on stands. It made a world of difference.
     
  4. Deadpool_25

    Deadpool_25
    Expand Collapse
    Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2015
    Messages:
    559
    Likes Received:
    265
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    Welcome to the Fractal family! Great products from a great company and great support community.

    I had my XL+ running through some HS7s for a while. It was great. I eventually ran it through a Matrix power amp and pair of Mesa 2x12s. Sounded pretty awesome and you could definitely feel it in your chest.

    I ended up selling the XL+ with every intention of getting an AX8 in an attempt to trim down my gear footprint a bit, but ended up just using my FX8 through my amp(s). I now have every intention of getting the next iteration of the AX8 (or maybe the current AX8 if I get impatient) lol.
     
    Grahammm likes this.
  5. 59Lespaul

    59Lespaul
    Expand Collapse
    Inspired

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    43
    Location:
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    Totally agree with everything above. I recently acquired the FX8 (also at the B stock sale) and I am running it through my Suhr Bella. Amazing setup - the days of spending way too much on pedals is finally over!!!!
     
    Grahammm likes this.
  6. Axe

    Axe
    Expand Collapse
    Apprentice

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Sarasota/Bradenton FL
    I'm looking to upgrade from a lowly Std to an XL+ as soon as I get back into the states :) Can't wait !
     
    BillyZeppa and Grahammm like this.
  7. Grahammm

    Grahammm
    Expand Collapse
    Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    LA, CA
    Another month in and man... it just gets better. Honestly. This thing blows my mind. I have a smile on my face every new thing I learn. It's inspired so much writing and fun practice sessions I've lost count. I thought I'd be solely focused on high gain, but this thing has me figuring out some amazing clean tones. I love it. I'm still stuck on the HBE for gain, but I'm starting to love the PVH 6160 model a lot as well. Anyway, just checking back in. Thanks again, guys!
     
    Hazar, NightWalker, Axe and 3 others like this.
  8. Axe

    Axe
    Expand Collapse
    Apprentice

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    11
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Sarasota/Bradenton FL
    Well, I upgraded.. :D The learning curve is more significant than I expected :confused:
     
    Hazar likes this.
  9. Andy G

    Andy G
    Expand Collapse
    Inspired

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    153
    Likes Received:
    142
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    But well, well worth it. :D
     
    Hazar likes this.
  10. Teej

    Teej
    Expand Collapse
    Regular

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2014
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    78
    Location:
    Wisconsin, USA
    Try out the 5153 models, I think they are the advanced version of the 6160 (just like in the real life amp world, lol). I love the 50w and 100w Blue models the most. The red sounds good but its best for lead; TONS of gain.
     
  11. Hazar

    Hazar
    Expand Collapse
    Apprentice

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2011
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    23
    Location:
    Texas
    Indeed.......but in a great way! It is like having a new toy every day. Amazing. I still learn something everyday after upgrading from an Ultra a few years ago. Enjoy Brother.
     
  12. GuttaLaser

    GuttaLaser
    Expand Collapse
    Forum Addict

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2013
    Messages:
    1,121
    Likes Received:
    656
    Location:
    Italy [Sicily]
    Welcome in the Nu World of Guitar Sound...
    BUT
    you must to know this: your social life ends here! :D
     
  13. Grahammm

    Grahammm
    Expand Collapse
    Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    LA, CA
    So, it's been about 6 months now... and I still love it. I ended up picking up some of the STL Tones Preset Packs that were recently released. Man... there are some killer presets in there. I picked up the Will Putney pack and there is a 5150 II preset in there that is incredible. If I was told I could only have that one patch and all the rest were forever gone, I think I'd be ok with that. Anyway, just doing my every few month check in on this post! Thanks again Fractal.
     
  14. Satch4u3

    Satch4u3
    Expand Collapse
    Motivated

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2013
    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    247
    Location:
    Canada
    Still digging the HS8's? I am in the market for some new monitors and was considering these as well as the Adam A7X. Unfortunately I cannot compare the two as my local music store does not have the A7X instock.

    The STL packs rock. Recently picked up the Howard Benson and Chris Krummett. Tracked a bunch on different guitar parts on a few songs for a friend and used a few of the Howard Benson patches. They sit really well in a mix!
     
  15. Walter B

    Walter B
    Expand Collapse
    Apprentice

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2016
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    0
    I had Mackie Mr8 with my Xl the Mackies sounded to compressed I switched to EV ZLX 12 a world of difference much better I am now pleased with the Clean sounds very Natural sounding
     
  16. Grahammm

    Grahammm
    Expand Collapse
    Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2017
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    27
    Location:
    LA, CA
    Yeah, I definitely still like them. Do I sometimes get the urge to pick up something else? Definitely. I know there are better options out there as far as studio monitors go, but for the time being they are doing what I need them to do. I have been curious on getting some CLR's or even trying out the Friedman ASM (or ASC) and seeing if that is perhaps too much for my needs or is such a world of difference I wouldn't be able to go back to just my Yamaha's.
     

Share This Page