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AlphaK

Which Helix?

Which Line 6 Helix?  

34 members have voted

  1. 1. Which Helix model have you gone for?

    • Helix Floor or Rack
      4
    • Helix LT
      4
    • HX Effects
      9
    • HX Stomp
      16
    • HX Native
      0
    • I had a Floor / Rack / LT / Effects / Stomp but have moved it on
      1


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Seeing a lot of love for the Helix multi-fx on a couple of threads and am seriously tempted to get one from Santa.

Would love to know what the BC community, who've got a Helix pedal, have gone for and why? Or if you've moved it on why it didn't cut the mustard.

Particularly also interested in how you're using them in a band mix and which FX you're particularly making use of.

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Got my hx fx this week. I thought it was time I joined the multifx club. I don’t need the amp sims on the stomp as I’m very happy with mine 😃 I also like lots of flashing lights. 😂 

Gigging it next week, I’ll be using the LA compressor, bass octave, chorus and I’ll be playing around with some mild fuzz and para eq to get an old skool p sound, eventually! 

Edited by bassfan
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I started with a Stomp, but now also have a FX, which is for band use. 

The Stomp is a very good box, I'd happily use it if i didnt have the choice, but i don’t think its the best for live use. No need for any amp/cab sims, i have real ones lol. 

Pretty much using the same effects as BF above, and also controlling my amp's channel switching from it. 

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12 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

Pretty much using the same effects as BF above, and also controlling my amp's channel switching from it. 

I might try and get my head around the channel switching in the new year and then I’ll only need the one box.... baby steps.... 

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At the risk of much thread duplication I was just about to ask the same question as the OP.

I have a lot of love for my Zoom B3 but I think I'll be treating myself to either a Stomp or a FX for Crimbo. The size of the Stomp is appealing but I'm not to fussed about amp and cab simulators and the FX isn't a whole lot bigger than the B3 (which is currently mounted on a Pedaltrain mini along with a VT Bass and my G30 receiver). The VT Bass would be sold on anyway so.....  :scratch_one-s_head:

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Having both i find the Stomp to be very cramped and a compromise for live use. I know loads use them, but for a one  stop box the FX is much nicer as its all laid out better. Plus it's cheaper. 

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11 minutes ago, Deedee said:

. The VT Bass would be sold on anyway so.....  :scratch_one-s_head:

With the FX you can wire your VT Bass to a footswitch and it becomes part of the Helix. Obviously just talking about on and off, but its a pretty cool feature. 

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2 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

With the FX you can wire your VT Bass to a footswitch and it becomes part of the Helix. Obviously just talking about on and off, but its a pretty cool feature. 

I'm sure I'd be able to find a suitable effect in the FX so I'd probably do away with it tbh. I don't tend use it a great deal anyway.

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My usual offer to anyone who wants to try out a Stomp then you are welcome to try mine.

I chose, and am sticking with, the Stomp simply because I play a range of acoustic basses and need various tones for different basses and songs, the amp and cab sims are particularly useful with my Rob Allen Mouse, I can get some lovely double bass sounding tones. I play through a QSC K.12.2 so the Stomp gives me a multitude of EQ shaping possibilities but all without deviating that much from the natural sound of the basses themselves. I often play in small venues and folk clubs and can often just use the Stomp as my entire rig. Seriously the Stomp and the QSC have completely revolutionised my outlook on playing and writing with the bass. Pukka.

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I've only messed with Helix Native on my laptop, but I'd definitely want one of the models with amp sims instead of the HX Effects.

After playing around with some crossover setups, sending the lows to a compressor and the highs to some distortion, I got some great results using the various guitar amps, and there's tons of them to choose from.

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Playing ampless with IEMs, the Stomp was the way to go. With a Morningstar MC6 the possibilities are endless!

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7 hours ago, Higgie said:

Playing ampless with IEMs, the Stomp was the way to go. With a Morningstar MC6 the possibilities are endless!

Yes, I can definitely see that if you are going down the IEM route amp & cab sims are going to come into their own and it seems from what dannybuoy is saying that the guitar amp sims can be used as part of FX design and tone shaping.

In terms of pricing once you're going down the Stomp + Morningstar MC6 combo route you're into LT pricing territory, which comes with a built in expression pedal. Just wondering whether you had considered the LT as an alternative given that you get considerably more blocks (32 vs 6) and additional processing power plus all the amp & cab sims to allow you to go down the IEM route should you want, with the LT?

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@Deedee always grand when more than one of us is making use of a thread - seems like this is timely for us both! Please feel free to jump in and it will be interesting / illuminating to see which one you go for. 

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1 hour ago, AlphaK said:

@Deedee always grand when more than one of us is making use of a thread - seems like this is timely for us both! Please feel free to jump in and it will be interesting / illuminating to see which one you go for. 

I certainly will 👍

I’m not a huge user of effects but being in covers bands and perhaps needing that one effect once every six months, the multi-effects route has always been the way to go for me. The B3 has performed admirably over several years. If (as I’m led to believe) the Helix range brings an improvement in the quality and range of effects available, I’ll certainly be interested in getting one of the range.

The navigation of either solution in a live situation is obviously critical, with the FX looking to tick all the boxes on that front. However, it may be my current lack of knowledge of how easily the Stomp switches between patches that’s clouding my view i.e. I’m sure it switches just as easily as it does on the B3.

Decisions, decisions 🤔

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1 hour ago, AlphaK said:

Yes, I can definitely see that if you are going down the IEM route amp & cab sims are going to come into their own and it seems from what dannybuoy is saying that the guitar amp sims can be used as part of FX design and tone shaping.

In terms of pricing once you're going down the Stomp + Morningstar MC6 combo route you're into LT pricing territory, which comes with a built in expression pedal. Just wondering whether you had considered the LT as an alternative given that you get considerably more blocks (32 vs 6) and additional processing power plus all the amp & cab sims to allow you to go down the IEM route should you want, with the LT?

I have to admit, it was the size of the Stomp and its ability to integrate into my setup that ruled out the LT completely, and I never even considered it. 

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I’m really liking the ease of navigation on Hxfx the blocks are really clear, nice and easy to see in a dark room, another plus point for me! 

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Had a Helix floor but hardly used it to be honest. Bought Helix native at the same time and it got all the use as I was bandless at the time. Just received a Stomp the other day and I'm extremely impressed. Depends greatly on your use case I suppose! 

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I've gone Stomp --> HX Effects 

Previously a big fan of Zoom multifxs (had the MS-60B, B3N and currently still have the B1X-4). The processing power and resultant quality of effects on the Helix are a step up from the Zoom gear, but they are also a step up in price! 

I find the form factor with the additional footswitches and the ability to have a bank of patches on display simultaneously, a big plus on the HX Effects as I don't need to remember the precise order of a load of patches which I did on the Stomp - I find it hard enough to have 2 hours of set material in my head for a gig! 😁 I'm happy with my amp and cab so not particularly missing the amp & cab sims on the Stomp and I'm fortunate in that my amp also provides a choice of cab sims should I want to DI out, although frankly I'm not sure how much of difference cab sims will make in the mix through a PA with the rest of vocals and instrumentation running through.

I'm mostly going to be using for EQ, hpf, drive, octave and delay / chorus.

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Which HX model is best for you depends on how you gig, what you need on a gig and your fx needs. If you’re needing amp/cab sims and space or budget isn’t an issue the bigger units might be better. I’d you need a compact solution and don’t need to be tap dancing between fx during a song or can get through a song with only needing say three different sound options a stomp could be your jam!

I had a stomp and it’s a very capable unit. It can cover all your amp/cab sims and a few effects with its total of 6 ‘fx slots’ which include the amp and cab slots.
 

As mentioned it is really useful for an IEM or direct to desk gig. The cab sim side of it has a heap of options form cab size to  mic type, placement, distance form the cab etc etc. The mic choice on the cab alone can have a massive impact on the sound of the cab sim- some have more lows some less etc so although it can sound quite involved it’s really very easy and you’ll be gravitating to couple of choice which suit your style. Cab sims will make your bass sound better if direct or iem is needed but you may be able to eq around that. A potential issue with the stomp is you might have to decide between a cab or an eq with only 6 slots being available.

The stomp has a range of I/O options which should seamlessly integrate with your current set up e.g. adding external pedals in the stomp fx loop or easily replace some if that’s your choice. The bigger units have amp switching capabilities too. 
 

The quality of the effects is really good but    there’s been much discussion about filter and synth capabilities if those effects are a vital part of your sound.

I ended up sticking with my pedalboard as I only really employ two or three fx and I’m happy with what I’ve got....for now😀

 

 

 

 

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I've got the rack and foot controller.

Keeps the brain away from the floor and beer spillages. Far cheaper to replace the controller than the entire unit. Also means the controls are higher up - less bending over to adjust stuff.

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3 minutes ago, fretmeister said:

I've got the rack and foot controller.

Keeps the brain away from the floor and beer spillages. Far cheaper to replace the controller than the entire unit. Also means the controls are higher up - less bending over to adjust stuff.

With the Effects you can do all the adjustments with your feet whilst playing, which i really like.

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19 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

With the Effects you can do all the adjustments with your feet whilst playing, which i really like.

Yes the facility to do that appeals to me too.

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Another Stomp user here.

As the lovely @krispn says, your needs will determine which version is the right one for you.

The Stomp was the obvious choice for my needs as I gig with in ear monitors so the amp and cab modelling help to give me a more familiar bass sound, you can probably get something similar using one of the many EQ options but I like the different characteristics the different models offer.

My core sound is made up of just 2 of the 6 blocks that the Stomp has, an amp and cab in one and a 3 band compressor in the other. Some guys on here use more complex signal paths for their sounds but I like to keep things simple, it makes problem solving easier if there's bad acoustics in the room. The only other part of my sound is a high pass filter but that's done via the global EQ so it doesn't impact on the block count. 

Both blocks of my core sound are always on so do not need to be assigned to the foot switches. The limited number of foot switches seems to be a common complaint against the Stomp, you have 3 on board and can add a further 2 via an external foot switch if you wish. On top of the core sound I have a drive and reverb together on foot switch 1, a chorus on switch 2 and pitch shifter for drop tuning on 3. The tuner is accessed via an external foot switch. That's more than enough for my needs, indeed I could lose the chorus without ever missing it, the drive isn't that essential and the drop tuning can be covered by using drop D tuning on the bass, but as the Stomp allows me to add these to my existing sound I'm happy to use them. If you're needs are fairly basic then the Stomp is an obvious choice. If you currently have a tectonic plate sized pedal board and want to recreate that then you'd be better of with one of the bigger options. There's no right or wrong answer, just whatever meets your needs. 

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I went for the Helix Floor. The LT had just come out when I was looking to get mine, but I decided that the extras on the full version were worth it and if I get the LT at some point sooner rather than later I'd need one of the missing features. And the "scribble-strips" are an essential part of my set up and I also use the additional inputs for running synths as well as bass in one of my bands.

I use my Helix direct into a powered FRFR cab, but on the whole I don't use any of the amp or cab sims, preferring instead just to have a decent EQ in the signal path, when I do it is either a clean guitar amp for my Bass VI or one that is picked specifically for its overdrive sound and used as an effect.

I decided not to go for the rack and separate pedal, because firstly getting a Helix was part of my down-sizing and I don't have an amp or cabs to sit the rack unit on. Secondly having struggled with finding a gig-proof Cat5 cable to connect my BassPod and Floorboard together in my previous rig I was very reluctant to have any home/office grade components in my new set up. Besides I mostly play on proper stages so I don't have to worry about audience inflicted damage. If I was playing cover in pubs, then I might reconsider, but I'd probably also be using a conventional bass rig so I'd have somewhere to stand the rack version. Finally the Helix Floor has a proper internal PSU and connects to the mains using a standard IEC main lead rather than a nasty wall-wart PSU.

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Wow - some really helpful posts, thanks! 

Must admit I'd never really looked as far up the chain as the Helix Floor and so hadn't spotted that it has the very useful scribble strips like the HX Effects.

So from a purely display perspective if I've got this right: the Floor has large plus scribble, LT large only, HX Effects scribble only and Stomp large only.

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