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So, how far has the Axe III come now?

Velokki

Inspired
I'm still an Axe 2 user, and have been since 2013. I use it daily and love it!
How would you say the Axe III compares to the 2 now? And how far have the firmware upgrades taken the unit from what it was initially on launch?

What I'm interested in:
-Playability, sound, dynamics
-Axe Edit functionality and reliability (Windows)
-Overall experience

How has YOUR experience been compared to the Axe II?
I would like to hear actual points/things you've appreciated on the III. Not just "ooh its awsome get one now youll luv it for sure bro", haha.

Thanks a lot!
 

getlostinsound

Inspired
  • The front panel is much easier to navigate.
  • Metering throughout your entire signal chain is invaluable.
  • The axe-edit experience in conjunction with the foot controllers is extremely smooth (you can use both at the same time).

And of course, the obvious big ones:
  • tons of CPU for bigger FX chains
  • lots of inputs and outputs
  • sounds and feels more real!
  • continued upgrades and support
 

luke

Fractal Fanatic
I’m still using my II in my band, even though I’ve had the III since inception. In a vacuum, the III has many improvements, especially in the clean and slightly dirty tones. Live, with everyone else playing and an audience half paying attention, I believe those improvements are less noticeable. It seems like your question is, is it time for you to upgrade. The answer is maybe.

Things for certain are:

Your II is depreciating faster than the III.

The II is done, it is what it is at this time. No more improvements.

The III has a lot more going on, but you may not utilize those features.

The battery in your II will eventually die, so hopefully you’ve backed it up.
 

Randalljax

Fractal Fanatic
The Feel is much different to the 2 and AX8

I would say in the last 3 or 4 updates
The work done on the power amp
Impedance compression etc
Has made a noticeable difference
 

unix-guy

Legend!
  • The front panel is much easier to navigate.
  • Metering throughout your entire signal chain is invaluable.
  • The axe-edit experience in conjunction with the foot controllers is extremely smooth (you can use both at the same time).

And of course, the obvious big ones:
  • tons of CPU for bigger FX chains
  • lots of inputs and outputs
  • sounds and feels more real!
  • continued upgrades and support
The Feel is much different to the 2 and AX8

I would say in the last 3 or 4 updates
The work done on the power amp
Impedance compression etc
Has made a noticeable difference
Those posts pretty much sum it up for me.

I also started on Axe Fx II in 2013... And it definitely evolved and improved.

I think the Axe Fx III has improved as much or more from it's inception to now as the Axe Fx II did from 2013-2018 in regards to the feel and sound and "real-ness".

The last couple firmware releases have been really good.

I play a lot of low to mid gain... I think that's the hardest to get "right" and it's pretty damn right at the moment ;)
 

Velokki

Inspired
Righty right!

But hey... what do you mean by this?
"The battery in your II will eventually die, so hopefully you’ve backed it up. "
 

NaturalScience

Inspired
I had a pretty good kitchen sink preset on the Axe FX II, but there were always a few things I wanted to add and didn't have the CPU to do. Also, the MFC was solid, but not very flexible in terms of doing different things with different presets. The added CPU power and FC integration has solved all that - I can cover a ridiculous amount of ground with one preset and control it all pretty easily.

The power amp updates, new speaker impedance curves, and output compression options in FW 9-10 to me are the most satisfying incremental updates since I started with an Axe FX Ultra around FW 5 or 6. Feel-wise, it's gotten to another level recently.

Cab modeling is also a lot easier to use now - for the longest time I wasn't able to get something I really liked out of the cab sims (it did always sit well in a mix though), but now it's pretty easy to dial something in.
 

unix-guy

Legend!
Righty right!

But hey... what do you mean by this?
"The battery in your II will eventually die, so hopefully you’ve backed it up. "
There is a small battery in the unit. If it dies, some things will revert to factory settings.

Just make sure you take regular full backups.
 

unix-guy

Legend!
The II is done, it is what it is at this time. No more improvements.
Since when? There has been no official announcement of that, and Fractal has released 2 firmware updates in the recent past...

I'll believe that when I see a post from Fractal that says so.
 

Joe Bfstplk

Axe-Master
I never had a II to compare, but the point made above would be a big motivating factor for me, if I was a II owner: it's at or near the end of the development curve, where the III is relatively new and just starting to get into its stride, and is much more powerful.

Plus, it's awesome, d⁰⁰D, just get one, you'll love it! ;)
 

DBraz

Member
I think the 3 sounds better than the 2 but the biggest difference for me now is the feel. It feels more like the amp blocks react like a valve amp with subtleties that we’re missing when playing on a 2.
 

curious

Experienced
I still use my Ax8 for small gigs and it is now, and I believe, always will be, a great small gig solution. I now use the Ax III for stage gigs and some other gigs. The Ax III sounds better and really achieves incredibly real sounding/feeling tones. Also, the III allows you to achieve much more creative effects combinations. The CPU is incredible. For example, I have a tune where I use a hi gain sound and an acoustic sim sound. On the Ax8, I have to use 2 presets and connect them with a foot switch. On the Ax III I have the whole thing on one preset with plenty of CPU to spare.
 
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