Discussion in 'Wishlist' started by lauwing, Aug 9, 2018.
very useful with Acoustic Guitar IR
I’d been asking for this feature in this forum for years, I hope seeing it implemented in the next firmware.
Disable the IR from one of the pairs of outputs, mix at the board.
This is somehow a very important point, IMO. It´s been discussed several times in this forum, but it´s good to insist on it.
Of course, as mollydyer says, you can blend or mix the IR and the piezo signal in several external ways, not in Amplifire. You can split the signal, route one of them to the Amplifire (IR) and then mix both to taste... etc.
But the key, to me, is that it´s not hard at all to include that blending feature in Amplifire, and it´s a great benefit to avoid extra gear to run such a simple thing. Not only for simplifying things (less gadgets, less cables, even less things to do for the sound engineer or yourself, less points of potential failure or potential noise sources...). And not to mention that with all that gadgets, I also need a DI box to carry the signal to the PA. If the AA12 could be used, you wouldn´t need an additional DI box, since you have XLR outputs.
Recently I had a gig in which I must use electric and electro-acoustic guitars. At this point, I´ve given up in trying to use my AA12 for both guitars, because it lacks the necessary routing power to do it. I use 4cm with my amp, so I cannot use the FX-loop to plug my electro-acoustic and try to make the trick (even when it´s not an ideal way of making it). So, for my acoustic I use another IR loader (Logidy EPSi). But it´s the same problem that happens on the AA12: I can´t mix the IR and the piezo signals in the EPSi.
OK, until now, I used my acoustic live with a 100% IR sound, no piezo component at all. The sound engineer asked me to review the IRs to find one that made easier to him the live mixing task, since he found it very hard to do with that 100% IR based signal. He told me that maybe the quacky sound of the piezo could be good to lift the acoustic in the mix.
So he came to my house and we spent some time reviewing my IRs (I purchased 3Sigma IRs of Martin and Taylor guitars). He chose some IRs which he claims would be much more convenient for the live mixing task. Nevertheless, insisted me on the convenience of having some amount of dry piezo signal to blend in.
And when he left my home, I started to think about it (one more time...) and decided to build a simple passive 2-channel mixer. I had some material because every now and then I build DIY pedals. With a couple pots, resistors, 3 jacks and a little enclosure I was done.
In the EPSi, with the "cabinet" firmware, when you plug the guitar in the left input (nothing in the right one), the signal gets internally splitted to both left and right channels. Then, each channel is processed independently. If you load a stereo IR, the left channel is processed with the left one on the IR, and so it does with the right channel. So I built some stereo IRs using my 3Sigma IRs for the left channel and the neutral IR from Greendog (free donwload) for the right channel. So what I have is the left channel with the acoustic IR signal and the right one with the neutral IR, which equals to have the dry piezo signal unaffected.
Then I just needed to mix both signals... and that´s what I do with my little passive mixer.
The result: with that mixed signal, the sound engineer told me, as soon as he heared the guitar, that it was absolutely a much better signal to put in the mix. He spent aprox 2 minutes to dial-in my sound. Until now, he had to struggle with the pure IR signal to properly fit the guitar in the mix, with lots of weird EQ tweaking.
At home, with the guitar alone, I don´t feel the mixed sound to be better than the pure IR sound. Actually, I like this one more than the mixed one. BUT, in the whole mix, specially in the LIVE MIX, there is no contest. The piezo sound is really important in that environment... that quacky sound absolutely helps to get the guitar alive. It´s not casual that top end Fishman systems and high end Yamaha acoustic guitars use a blendable piezo-IR strategy. It´s also used the blendable piezo-mic system, but for what I´ve seen in live mixes, they are used with very little mic amount and mostly with piezo signal. Otherwise, feedback problems appear much easily. For me, this is a huge advantage of the IRs.
Additional commet: in the pic you can see a Zoom MS-50G. I use it just for boost and compression purposes for fingerpicking. I could also use it for reverb or some other FX, but the sound guy makes that on the mixer. Well, when I said above that simplifying is important, I meant that it IS REALLY important sometimes. In the last gig I had to remove the Zoom because it added noise due to a shared power supply point with another pedal. Had no way to avoid it, so I took it away. If a could route the acoustic through the Amplifire and make all these things (plug the 2 guitars, plus IR blend, plus 4cm, plus activate/deactivate the main/XLR outputs independently...) I wouldn´t need to carry those extra gadgets you see in the pic, and would avoid those noise problems, or potential failures. Helix LT can do all of this. Just one gadget. However, it weighs double than my rig...
Sorry for the brick!
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