Understanding the HBE

Discussion in 'Discussion' started by Frost, Jan 2, 2017.

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  1. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    I'm enjoying the HBE amp sim quite a bit but I'm having a hard time getting consistent results from it.

    It seems like the amp is one of the most versatile models on the AF unit, and with good reason: it can do a range of tones from crunch to heavy metal. I'm looking for a tight metal sound suited for melodic and heavy metal, and I'm very close to that kind of sound for the most part. My main issue is my sound has a muffled bassiness that I don't get with the 5150 sim. What I want to know is the following:

    1. What cabs choices are a good place to start?

    2. How do the Bass, Treble, master, and Presence knobs work on this particular amp model?

    3. How do I get rid of that bass-heavy, muffled sound I keep getting?

    The bass, treb, pres, question sounds dumb but the HBE seems to be made differently than your average 5150. It seems like the treb controls presence, and the actual pres knob controls the hairiness/high-end on the amp. Since the amp seems natually fat and bassy, turning the bass knob near 1 or 2 seems to improve things but I feels as if I should not have to use such an extreme setting. It seems like the amp is wayy more controllable when the volume is dimed to 3, as the stock hbe clips both on my AF and on my interface.

    How do you guys work with the HBE? Any tips, presets, etc? Thanks for listening and all input is appreciated.

    I might put up a sound clip soon too if that helps any
     
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  2. fearuvthedark

    fearuvthedark Well-Known Member

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    I usually bring down the CAB bottom 1~2db to account for this. Probably better ways to do it, but I'm still learning this thing, lol.
     
  3. erikm5150

    erikm5150 New Member

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    For a start try the Friedman cab from 3sigma audio.

    for a free option, try the Marshall Warm cab from Singtall's preset pack.

    For EQ options to deal with the flubbiness, use the pre eq on low shelf 1 and cut some lows (not a lot, just anywhere from -1 to -2.5 db on .12 or .17 khz, with the lowcut around 110)
    the graphic eq post amp can also be used to tame the flub in some cases.
    Also, experiment with the bass on the amp and cab bottom settings. -- i.e. someimtes increasing the bass on the amp increases flubb on the low notes, while increasing the the bottom on the cab may result in a tighter bottom end (depeneds on the IR though).
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2017
  4. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    Actually, I've been playing around more and I made some great sounds with the HBE. It's now my favorite amp to use :cool:
     
  5. loremipsum

    loremipsum Well-Known Member

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    What adjustments did you do to make it sound good?
     
  6. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    I'm not on my AF or comluter right now but here's a rundown:

    I turned the Master down to 3 so everything is more controllable and not clipping.

    I tend to like darker cabs with the HBE model, as it compliments the hairiness better imo.

    Go easy on the Presence and Treble. I'd like to retract the statement I made in the OP. The treb and pres work like they traditionally would, with treb being more "hairy" than the 5150's treb knob. I usually keep these controls between 5-6.

    I like to keep the preamp gain a little cranked but not maxed (6-8). Then I let the overdrive pedal do the rest for me. I like the sound of the "overdrive" OD block more than the "screamer" personally.

    I uploaded a preset on another thread in the preset exchange. I believe it was titled "HBE and Dumble Presets".
     
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  7. drop the sun

    drop the sun Well-Known Member

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    I don't like the HBE sim on Amplifire at all. Too much tweaking, to get it "right". 5150 sim is way more better choise for high gain tones.

    On my Axe-Fx II the HBE is ready to rock out of the box. Just add your favorite IR and you are good to go.

    The Amplifire version is muddy and fizzy and hard to dial in.
     
  8. Ziggybumwah

    Ziggybumwah Well-Known Member

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    I wonder what tweaks would be involved to get it to sound similar to the Axe FX version?
     
  9. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    I would have to agree with that. When I first tried the HBE, it was so boomy and unusable. I just didn't understand. The guys on the fractal forum were praising it as one of the best models on the axe unit - usable out of the box at stock settings. The AF version does sound good but you really have to work with it. I won't beat around the bush here, though: I'm an absolute simpleton when it comes to guitar tone. The less I have to tweak to get a good sound, the happier I am. I don't mind having a lot of tweaking options but a basic good tone should be there first. The HBE definitely needs a "fix" in a future update. Or maybe a tweaked model released as a separate amp.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2017
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  10. Milos

    Milos New Member

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    I've gotta agree with the previous posts as well. It has great character, but needs a lot of work to get to sound even remotely close to right. It has this stuffy midrange that just doesn't seem to open up the way it should, except if hit with some serious GEQ. And then there's the fizz that's extremely hard to tame. Sharp parametric EQ cuts do help with that too, but in the end when you have different 3-4 EQs post-amp it does lose some life...
     
  11. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    Agreed once again. I feel like in the process of making the HBE sound better, I'm overprocessing in the long run.

    About the fizz, I'm learning to control it better by using the Treble knob, as well as a lowpass filter. The Treb knob seems to be the "hair/fizz" knob more or less. You can be more liberal with the treble knob if your cab is dark but you generally have to be conservative with it.

    The fizziness seems to occur around the 10-12khz range so I set a lowpass at 12khz and slowly sweep it to the right until the fizz is gone. This can be done either in AF or in your DAW. Personally, I use the lowpass in the AF but disable it when recording for the sake of EQ control in my DAW.
     
  12. loremipsum

    loremipsum Well-Known Member

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    I made more experiments with the HBE and got pretty good results. The biggest improvement came after loading a recently bought V30 Celestion IR and rolled off the highs at 5Khz. Next thing was to use the Screamer with Drive at 0, tone at 50% (default setting) and level at 0db (default setting).
     
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  13. Milos

    Milos New Member

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    Aggressively rolling of the highs obviously takes care of the fizz problem, but at the same time destroys your high end. For live tones the loss in high frequency content may be acceptable, but when recording metal in particular, you do want to have that top end intact up to at least 12 kHz, otherwise you lose a lot of aggression and the mix will begin to sound dull.
     
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  14. loremipsum

    loremipsum Well-Known Member

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    The recently released Celestion IRs seems to be very bright and I felt the need to tame the highs more than on other IRs. However, I just tried them on their own (not in a mix) for high gain stuff with Friedman, 5150 and Mesa.
     
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  15. Ziggybumwah

    Ziggybumwah Well-Known Member

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    Now that I have my 2 FRFR monitors, I'm interested to fiddle with this more. Can anyone provide or link to a good high quality recording of a Friedman in action? I'd like to hook one monitor up with the reference tone, while adjusting the amplifire hooked up to the other, comparing the results side by side. Don't know if this would work or not but figured it would be fun to try.

    Edit: example: some have mentioned having the Friedman on Axe, wondering if they could record the axe output and provide.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2017
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  16. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    You could try Tonefinder. It has tons of recorded amps, pickups, cabs, etc.

    Soundcloud might be good too. People post raw tone samples there alot.

    EDIT.
    Here's some sounds

    http://www.tonefinder.com/?section=id&value=9539
    http://www.tonefinder.com/?section=id&value=9540
    http://www.tonefinder.com/?section=id&value=16769
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2017
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  17. Ziggybumwah

    Ziggybumwah Well-Known Member

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    I was coming back to say thanks! and then find you edited your post with some of the HBE sounds I just perused through on tone finder. Fantastic!!

    Had not heard of tone finder before, and never thought to look in soundcloud. Great Suggestions!

    I have an audio splitter off of the HDMI output from the xbox. I think I can set it up to be a mono source and then plug that in to an FRFR monitor... I know the recording quality may not be the best, but its a start.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2017
  18. Frost

    Frost Active Member

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    No problem, bud! Yeah, I discovered tonefinder a long time ago but forgot about it. I've been kicking myself for forgetting the name but it popped into my head this morning, and I'm glad it did haha. Lemme know how it goes, man!
     
  19. Ziggybumwah

    Ziggybumwah Well-Known Member

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    Quick question: are you using humbuckers or single coils?
     
  20. JiveTurkey

    JiveTurkey Well-Known Member

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    The BE and the HBE are awesome. Really; most all of the high gain stuff is killer. I think I reconverted myself ;)
     

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