Axe-Fx. Too good for its own good?

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by leftyguitarjoe, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. leftyguitarjoe

    leftyguitarjoe Correct-handed

    Messages:
    4,079
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    Newark, DE
    Here is my problem. I've had my Axe-Fx Standard from about 3 months. I cant seem to get the right tone. I find myself getting perpetually closer and closer, but there are so many variables that go into the tones that I cant seem to get it quite right. I know the unit is capable of giving me the tone I want, its just so damn hard to dial it in!

    My roommate makes fun of me sometimes. He is more of a plug and play kind of guy and plays through a 6505. He finds it funny to see me with Axe Edit on one monitor, google and 5 or 6 tabs of online Axe-Fx info on the other monitor, and the Axe-Fx manual spread out all over my bed.

    How long did it take you guys to achieve "that tone" that you were looking for? Are there any intuitive tutorials out there that really helped you?

    And just for the record, here is a short clip with my main distorted tone so you can see how far I've come along.
     
  2. JamesM

    JamesM The Armada

    Messages:
    7,487
    Likes Received:
    1,182
    Joined:
    May 29, 2010
    Location:
    USA
    I don't have an Axe-FX and never have but I do know one thing.

    All of my guitar sounds come from free amp-sims, impulses and other plugins in my DAW and after years of tweaking I'm finally happy (well, as happy as possible, I think I've plateaued what I can do with it) with what I've got. Years!

    Everything good is worth working your butt off for! Keep on grinding and I'm sure you'll get a sick tone in no time. :)
     
  3. Rook

    Rook Electrifying

    Messages:
    9,050
    Likes Received:
    1,431
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2010
    Location:
    London
    I stopped trying to get what I thought would give m good tone and just started listening.

    I was originally using the D60M into a Metal cab with loads of boost loads of gate etc, sag down, loads of brightness loads of bass.

    It was completely unrealistic, and I guess te reason I ended up there was because I thought I wa taking advantage of all the stuff you can do with the axe.

    My tones now, I seem to stumble upon and the more I record it the more I tweak it, the more used to it I get, the more I like it. I don't set out looking for something, I start with something I quite like and tweak from there. I don't even touch the really deep amp settings.

    On the face of it the axe works just like an amp, of you put it to a 6505 model and a cab you like like the recto, likelihood is straight out the box it'll do what you want and just take the time to adjust.
     
  4. SevenSkull

    SevenSkull SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Location:
    Berlin
    How do you practise/record your tones? If you are using headphones or FRFR speakers maybe the cabinet simulation is the problem.

    I spent a lot of time with searching for good IRs, while e.g. your roommate can change his sound just by moving his head a little bit. Next problem are the ears. Sometimes I got a good tone and didn't like it the next day.
    As a solution I swept through my redwirez systematically until I found a set of 5-10 IRs I can use every day.
     
  5. leftyguitarjoe

    leftyguitarjoe Correct-handed

    Messages:
    4,079
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    Newark, DE
    I run through a power amp into a 4x10 cab and a 1x5 monitor. I've found that not using a cab sim makes it sound like shit
     
  6. Aftermath1

    Aftermath1 SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    242
    Likes Received:
    10
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    Same with me, despite everyone saying to turn the cab sim off I much prefer my patches with them on. Just sounds thin without, this is going into a 4x12 by the way.
     
  7. toiletstand

    toiletstand /\'...'/\

    Messages:
    2,183
    Likes Received:
    167
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2010
    Location:
    El Paso, Tx
    i use podfarm and i know thats its nothing like the axefx but i learned that its easy to get lost adding stuff/variables to your chain. for me i find that its best to keep the setup as simple as possible. i dont get as frustrated anymore looking for tones.
     
  8. dbrozz

    dbrozz SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    1,149
    Likes Received:
    194
    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    Location:
    British Columbia
    You'll find with the Axe-FX that a lot of the time less is more.
    Try running two amps in parallel and blending them nicely, and run them through a cab or two. Then add a low pass filter to cut that hiss (if you're getting any) and maybe a compressor.

    The more blocks in your effects chain, the higher the chances of getting lost and frustrated. If you run the bare necessities of a tone, you'll find that the Axe-FX is damn good at what it does!

    And you could always throw an effects loop in there for on-off phase, chorus, delay, etc. Good luck :wavey:

    EDIT: for fun, walk over to your roommates rig and check the settings and try and dial that in to the Axe.
    With a 5150/6505 sim and a similar cab, try and see what you can do as far as finding the sound closest to a real amplifier.
     
  9. sevenstringj

    sevenstringj Banned

    Messages:
    3,060
    Likes Received:
    231
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    ny
    Have you tried messing with amp models that aren't stereotypical of djent? You may be pleasantly surprised.
     
  10. Ryan-ZenGtr-

    Ryan-ZenGtr- SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    1,662
    Likes Received:
    155
    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Location:
    London
    If you have any complete mixes recorded in your DAW, why not reamp a DI to your AxeFX and tweak the tone, listening to how it interacts with your actual mix?

    The best tones work well with the other instruments, so it can be surprising when you find out what they sound like alone (isolated, solo'd, PFL'd etc.).

    When I do the mixes on my tracks it's always a little heartbreaking to decimate huge powerful guitar tones so that they don't hide the bass, drums, production and obscure the lyrics.

    Time spent learning about complex equipment can never be a bad thing, unless it prevents time being spent on more productive activities.
     
  11. Leuchty

    Leuchty Previously CYBERSYN

    Messages:
    6,693
    Likes Received:
    386
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    Sunny Coast, Australia
    Search for a tone that is 90% there.

    Stalk creator of said tone and get settings/patches.

    Tweak to your liking.

    Profit.
     
  12. JamesM

    JamesM The Armada

    Messages:
    7,487
    Likes Received:
    1,182
    Joined:
    May 29, 2010
    Location:
    USA
    You know what? Just send it here. I'll get some good patches dialed in there. ;)
     
  13. noUser01

    noUser01 Still can't play.

    Messages:
    3,589
    Likes Received:
    284
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2012
    I don't know how the AxeFX works fully, since I don't own one, but just start simple. Take an amp and cab you like. Tweak the gain and three basic EQ knobs to your liking. THEN move onto the extras like presence, resonance, etc. THEN add a tube screamer if you want. Fiddle with the tone knob on it. THEN move on to an EQ pedal if you need it.

    Just take it all in steps man, don't dive into all of it right away. Hope that helps!

    EDIT: Btw your tone is awesome so far!! \m/
     
  14. 4Eyes

    4Eyes SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    1,031
    Likes Received:
    117
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Location:
    Slovakia
    I think that most problems of people that are trying to find the holly grail tone is that they are after the tone they hear from the real cabinet. but they forgot the most important thing: these modelers, whatever they are using to model guitar cab (IRs or something other), are emulating the tone of the mic'ed cabinet which sounds "worse" alone but fits better in the mix. my advice is: just get used to that tone instead of trying to find something which are these unit not capable of. or plug the modeler into a real cab and turn off the cab sims, I bet you can find decent tone in that way.

    you've found your problem. use some kind of "standard" cabinet (means whatever with single, two or more 12" speakers of your preference) without cab simulation or use some kind of "monitors" or FR speaker system with simulation of the miced cabinet
     
  15. sol niger 333

    sol niger 333 I like stuff

    Messages:
    1,581
    Likes Received:
    475
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Your tone is useable. Riffs and tracking skillz are more important than perfect tone. Workable guitar sound and monster playing with feel and no slop wins everytime over endless knob tweaking. Lol @ knob tweaking by the way. KNOB TWEAKING.
     
  16. wakjob

    wakjob SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    3,121
    Likes Received:
    239
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    Location:
    C-137
    Unfortunately this doesn't work, and is one of the reasons I sold my Ultra. In theory, one should be able to pick their favorite amp from real life (maybe they even actually had one) or park their amp right next to the Axe Fx rig and put all the dial at the same position and have it sound the same...nope.
     
  17. SevenSkull

    SevenSkull SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    Location:
    Berlin
    In this case a 4x12 cab with some of the "regular" speakers (V30, T75) is my recommendation, too.
    You should turn off the cab sim. I have a 2x12 with V30s and for comparison reasons I made a stereo setup with my AxeFX and a 120W metal head both connected to the 2x12. With cab sims the Axe sounded dull, without it sounded quite similar to the real head.
     
  18. casketshrine

    casketshrine SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    219
    Likes Received:
    38
    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2008
    Location:
    Karachi, Pakistan
    I would highly recommend getting some custom IRs. I use Redwirez. The onboard IRs are great but Redwirez IMO are better. I use a mixture of ambient IRs & the mic'd ones to get the tone I want and quite frankly there is nothing you cannot accomplish through Axe Fx.

    I may have said this on some other post of mine but a lot of people get caught up trying to get a certain amp model to sound like its real world counterpart. While its possible, its a process of trial and error of indefinite duration. Try the subject amp as a reference point and then go constructing from there. That's actually the whole fun of using an Axe Fx for me. If you have a tone in your head, try a bunch of different amps to approach that tone but the thing that'll make the biggest difference is the cab you are going through. You'd find your tone sounds entirely different when you switch from a 2x12 to a 4x12 and even more when you switch from say a V30 cab to a Greenback 25.

    I am not much of a tech head so I just play around with it and go by the ear. Over the weekend, I was able to recreate the tone I have dialed on my JVM 205H's orange mode on the OD channel. It doesn't sound EXACTLY like that but...better. At least how I'd want the JVM to sound like when I record. I used the JCM 800 model boosted with a Rat into a combination of Redwirez Greenback H30 + Celestion T75 ambient mics, Null & wall 3 inches through R121 microphone. Then I just added low pass filter to tame that extra sizzle. However, I did tweak my ass off in the poweramp/amp geek section. That part is entirely trial & error for me. I keep playing around until I get a good tone.

    Also another important thing I learned from playing around is, start off simple and try to keep it simple. Easier to remember & control that way.
     
  19. casketshrine

    casketshrine SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    219
    Likes Received:
    38
    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2008
    Location:
    Karachi, Pakistan
    Also, as mentioned above: DO NOT UNDERSTIMATE THE POWER OF THE EQ!

    An EQ block is of great consequence depending on where you place it in your chain.
     
  20. HighGain510

    HighGain510 Contributor

    Messages:
    14,929
    Likes Received:
    5,269
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Considering all the extra stuff going on in the Axe, why would you even assume that would be possible? Without knowing in detail how Cliff comes up with his simulation of each amp, do you really think the amp model should be able to sound IDENTICAL to the amp it's modeling when you set the knobs to the same position? The technology just isn't there yet, if you close your eyes and use your ears to dial it in, you'll have much greater success getting the tone close to the amp.
     

Share This Page