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Wireless (Shure GLX D14r) tone question - why does it suck?

Discussion in 'Rigs and Routing' started by RockinDoc, Sep 12, 2018.

  1. RockinDoc

    RockinDoc
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    Fractal Tone Gurus-

    I have a serious question to ask the brain trust on this forum. After reading many, many posts and reviews on this forum and others I pulled the trigger on a GLX D14r a few days ago. People here praised its transparent tone and many people here seem-ably are very happy with their sound through this wireless setup, comparing it favorably to expensive cables. When I A/B'd it to my guitar (Les Paul R9) through my normal (Monster) cable, there was a loss of the wonderful, organic distortion and harmonic overtones that made me love my Axe FX III so much in the first place. It sounded.... not bad... but nowhere close to the same as a cable. In short, it makes my beautiful Axe sound like a Line 6 POD from 2004.

    I played with the gain settings, settling on the lowest setting. There is no additional gain that I can perceive coming from the unit. It "tickles the red" on the Axe when I play hard, just like the cable. I added an eq after the input, rolling off the high frequencies, but that is really not the problem--its the harmonics that give it the "full" sound that are missing. I tried changing the patch cable from my GLX to my AXE FX III, including trying using a normal 20 foot guitar cable as a patch cable -- no improvement. I tried using all of the different channel settings, no improvement.

    I know I am not imagining the loss in tone. I am hoping sincerely that there is some setting I am missing since I know most of the people on this forum are as obsessed with their tone as me!

    I really appreciate all of your help in advance. I hope I can figure this out, or back to the store it goes!
     
  2. chris

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    describe how you're connecting the wireless to the Axe. are you changing any settings on the Axe?
     
  3. RockinDoc

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    GLX set to line level, 1/4 inch cable (tried many) into input 1 on the back of Axe FX. A/B'ing with a guitar cable inserted into instrument jack in the front straight to guitar.
     
  4. chris

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    have you compared using the same exact input on the Axe?

    you say GLX is set to line level - are there other options?
     
  5. RockinDoc

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    So I had some success and some failure. I'll post what I learned here in hopes to help others.

    I played with a lot of different options on the GLX and fractal. Part of my original problem is that I had the gain turned down too much on the GLX. Just as you need to "tickle the red" to make the most of your Axe FX, you apparently also need to make sure that your signal takes up most of the shure's available signal with appropriate gain. Once I did this, the tone improved significantly, although it was overloading the input on the Axe FX III and causing clipping on the axe end.

    I turned the input gain on the Axe FX down to around 10% or so, and it seemed to level off. This brought the tone to what I would consider acceptable. There was still a difference however, when I compared to a cable. It just wasn't the same. Maybe it was 2% or 5% or whatever, but I couldn't stand it once I heard it. In the end, I decided to go back to the "wired" setup and return the GLX.

    I may try again at some point with one of the higher end Shure systems. I'd be curious if anyone has had better luck with the QLX line coloring their tone less? Perhaps wireless and I are not meant to be, LOL. o_O

    Thank you everyone who posted trying to help!
     
  6. dpeterson

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    Level has to be right, mine sounds like a cord. Double blind test couldn't tell. Even if it was a 20% loss i'd take it to not have to deal with a cord. I hate cords more than I hate broccoli... and thats a lot.
     
  7. RockinDoc

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    I also hate cords, which is why I was so disappointed to box this one back up. Out of curiosity, what setting was the gain set to on your GLX and Axe?
     
  8. dpeterson

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    Not at my gear I’ll check and get back.
     
  9. unix-guy

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    As asked already, but not answered, are you really set to line level? A guitar is instrument level, and I would expect your Axe Fx will be much happier with that level.
     
  10. RockinDoc

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    Yes, I tried both the "line" level and "mic" level settings on the Shure.
     
  11. t0aj15

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    Instead of using the mic/line out XLR jack, use the 1/4" out jack on the Shure and set the front panel GAIN to -18 db as it states on page 12 of the manual. This will set the the output at unity gain. Plug this in to the front input of the Axe-Fx, problem solved.
     
  12. RockinDoc

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    This was initially how I set this up when I wrote this post. 1/4" cable to back (and even tried front) of amp. This did set the gain to what sounds like unity, but it compressed the heck out of the signal and removed all the harmonics from my tone. Maybe I just got a lemon unit?
     
  13. t0aj15

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    Did you also, after setting up the Shure, go back to page 15 of the Axe-Fx II manual and set up the input levels of the Axe-Fx?
     
  14. RockinDoc

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    Yes, exactly as described. This helped my sound, but in the end I was unsatisfied with the GLX and plan to return it.
     

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