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Top common mistakes when setting up the Axe FX??

I will be using my Axe FX for the first time this weekend at a live venue where the setup ail be Axe to front of house and then house feed back to stage wedges.
I've setup the presets pretty well at home at high volume but am wondering what I may have missed that will bite me at the gig.
Any suggestions, comments etc would be really welcome.

Thx.
 

Cainer

Veteran
Have you levelled the volume across presets? Leave yourself some sort of way of boosting them via foot-controller - you'll be happy you did. Make sure you know how to adjust the basic parameters via the front panel if you're not going to have Axe Edit there to do so. Wear clean underwear?
 

electronpirate

Moderator
Moderator
So if you have a 'my feed' on the monitor in front of you:

I'd try to get them to: 1. Bump your track in the mix so you can hear yourself, get feedback, etc 2. nuke the global 'verb' on your feed so you can hear yourself without all the 'wash'.

All of which can be done in sound check. If no soundcheck, just talk to the soundman beforehand. Most of them are pretty cool once you feed them beer.


I personally never like the FOH feed coming back to me; I'm totally dependent on what soundguy is going to do.
 

Zwiebelchen

Fractal Fanatic
I will be using my Axe FX for the first time this weekend at a live venue where the setup ail be Axe to front of house and then house feed back to stage wedges.
I've setup the presets pretty well at home at high volume but am wondering what I may have missed that will bite me at the gig.
Any suggestions, comments etc would be really welcome.

Thx.
If you setup your presets at high volume, you should be fine.

But be prepared to do some global EQ adjustments on the fly depending on your on-stage monitors (for your own shits and giggles... leave the EQing of the FOH mix to the sound guy).


As a rule of thumb, I reduce the global amp gain a little bit (like 5%) and the reverb mix by 30% when playing live (but only do the latter if you used your reverbs with mix values less than 50%, otherwise it will cause some unwanted dry level increase).
 

clarky

Axe-Master
I think the most common mistake is expecting presets to translate perfectly to different monitoring environments..

ie.. home practice via studio monitors, live with with traditional cabs, FRFR at gig volume etc..

of course switching between some environments will have more differences than others..
but I think that the most prudent course of action is to have presets specifically configured for your home practice and live environments..
that way you have less goofing around to do during sound check / rehearsals..
you just setup with no / minimal goofing around
 

Jul

Inspired
Make sure that guitar into the input jack on the Axe FX ( instead of the headphone jack). Simple concept - yeah I know, but hate to admit that I've done it once or twice, and couldn't understand why there was no sound output for a moment or two.
 

svl

Forum Addict
Number one rule- MAKE SURE THE FOH CHANNEL YOU ARE IN IS SET UP FOR LINE LEVEL. If not make sure they pad it down. You may want to snag a direct box to carry yourself in case the venue can't handle line level.

If you barely have the level out up and the sound guy keeps yelling at you to turn down, he doesn't have you set right (and most likely doesn't know what the fuck he's doing). BE SURE to correct this fast and don't let him bully ya into believing it's your unit.

Had this happen to me twice- even told the sound guy(s) REPEATEDLY to pad me, they just couldn't wrap their heads around it. Had to step out to FOH & do it myself. Then they look at you and go "ooooohhhhhhh".
 

Gamedojo

Forum Addict
Make a optional healthy 4-5db midboost around 770hz in a filter. Leave it off on all your presets until you get to the gig.

Then when in the middle of playing, if you are struggling, turn it on via a footswitch and see if it helps. That saved me on my first gig....
 

AndyOrr

Inspired
1. If you change guitars during the set, REMEMBER to adjust I/O input level.

2. If you use lots of different presets, tell the FOH engineer to be mindful of your faders at the beginning of each song. No matter how hard you try, you're going to have some volume differences between presets. If the FOH is putting your band out at 105db, any volume differences won't be very subtle.

3. Hook up a volume pedal and don't be afraid to use it if your monitor mix goes awry. It's a last resort but sometimes you have to override the sound guy.

4. This is expensive but, if you can, bring a backup Axe FX. If not, a back up amp and a pedalboard are a must.

5. I always carry a spare midi cable for my MFC.

6. Keep some quality hearing protection nearby at all times. I have custom fit Westone's for wedges when I'm not using in-ear monitors.

7. Try to make notes of what you hear and what needs adjusted for next time. A gig is like 10 rehearsals as far as learning curve goes.

Good luck!
 

A to the T

Veteran
Tons of great suggestions in this thread. I don't play live but this is handy as hell even when just going out to jam. Well done everyone !
 

guitvai1

Inspired
Since we mostly use our own PA (EV powered speakers), unless the venue has a kickass system, I spent a couple of hours in a rehearsal space with the PA to see how my tones out of FOH compared to my Matrix Q12's (which I use to dial up my patches). I was pleasantly surprised that they were pretty close however the PA speakers put out more bass so I had to dial that back a bit. I think most experienced Axe FX users have found that you may need to drop some lower and higher end frequencies to make your patches work through FOH. I only really had issues with the lower end being a bit much. I highly recommend the Q12's for dialling up tones and monitoring onstage, also i did have an opportunity to compare the CLR wedge against the Q12 and found it to be a bit muddy with my Q12 dialled up patches.
 

Zwiebelchen

Fractal Fanatic
1. If you change guitars during the set, REMEMBER to adjust I/O input level.
You don't need to do that. Just set the I/O input level to your hottest guitar and all other guitars will be fine.

2. If you use lots of different presets, tell the FOH engineer to be mindful of your faders at the beginning of each song. No matter how hard you try, you're going to have some volume differences between presets. If the FOH is putting your band out at 105db, any volume differences won't be very subtle.
I never experienced any huge volume differences between presets in any live situation. Dial in your tones at gig volume and the problem is solved.

3. Hook up a volume pedal and don't be afraid to use it if your monitor mix goes awry. It's a last resort but sometimes you have to override the sound guy.
Don't do that. Really, don't! It will mess up the FOH mix aswell. Instead, gesture the sound man to turn it up/down - or take your time and do a proper sound check.
 

AndyOrr

Inspired
I hear a big difference in my tone if I don't adjust input levels for each guitar. My Strat is dialed up to near 90 while my Les Paul is around 25. This may not be as important for high gain sounds where your compensating for input level and SN ratio in the signal chain but, based on my experience, it's absolutely necessary for clean tones. I've fiddled with putting null filter and/or clean drive blocks in the front of the signal chain to compensate for different input levels. It's not the same. Your mileage may vary.

Also, it really is a best practice to inform FOH that if you're changing presets, you're essentially switching amps between songs. They don't have to do anything with that information but they should know. If you're actually dialing in your gig tones at 105db as suggested above, you're going to experience a near immediate "threshold shift" in your hearing. That's your body switching to hearing protect mode. After that, your perception of volume changes and you may not be able to differentiate between volume A and volume B. Better to use a db meter and hearing protection at those levels if you're trying to equalize preset volumes.
 

Dpoirier

Forum Addict
This happened to me more than once: during setup, I accidentally plugged my on-stage powered-monitors into the IN 2 (instead of OUT 2 unbalanced)... this happens as a result of being distracted, poor lighting, rushing through setup, etc. Then, during sound check, I usually keep my on-stage monitors off (after all, the sound guy is trying to set up FOH levels).

If there's no time for a quick check *with* on-stage levels as they should, then you get a nasty surprise when the show starts - no on-stage sound.

So double-check *and* test briefly that all your rear connections are correct (I have also plugged my midi cable in the out instead of in, or switched my two pedals around...).
 
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