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  • Quote Originally Posted by huffcw
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    I am also interested in hearing how the sound of this compares to software modeling (both Amplitube and Guitar Rig). I am kind of torn right now whether my next buy will be software or hardware.



    Also, what are the differences in terms of sound compared to the older Tonelab models?




    Both of these questions are tough to answer. The first is mostly personal, unless someone weighs in who's had experience with all three and tells you which he prefers. Software certainly has the edge from the flexibility standpoint. Some will argue that's the case for tone, too. And then again, are you looking just for tone quality, or are stage machinations a consideration?



    The second question is a little easier to research, but the Vox product specialist told me that the LE was "voiced a little warmer" than the SE. The processors in the LE are of a later generation, too, but that's always the case with technology. And the presets in the LE have been entirely re-written, making it a little harder to compare the two units directly. Often, the factory presets will be written according to current tastes, so what you're hearing is a programmer's choice, and not necessarily one technology version against another. I had both in my hands for a brief time, and "smoother" is the term that struck me (regarding the LE). But that's hardly a surprise, as later digital technology will always (hopefully!) better reduce the dreaded digital fizz of its forebears.



    It might be too close to call, and your decision will be made by other concerns: price, two pedals vs. one, etc. An SE owner probably wouldn't upgrade (unless he's the type who'll trade in his 2005 car for the same 2007 model), and a new buyer probably won't be interested in the SE unless he needs two onboard expression pedals (and is cost conscious).



    Hope this helps.
    Jon Chappell
    Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
    Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

    Comment








    • Quote Originally Posted by Jon Chappell
      View Post

      I hear ya. There is one insert point, and it's not movable, unfortunately (it's permanently placed before the modeled pedals, at the front of the chain). This prevents, for example, placing the LE's modeled vox wah before your Axis (or Fulltone) Fuzz, as one famous guitarist has done.



      I also expected to see an expression-pedal insert, since they took away one physical pedal going from the SE to the LE version. This would have given them the desired footprint reduction, but provided the option for people who really need and use two expression pedals.



      There are more versatile multi-effects units out there with respect to modularity and routing, but it's hard to deny that what the unit does with respect to core sound, it does successfully. Vox is hoping the approach will resonate with guitarists who are looking for the more "analog approach" (note the quotes, please) in sculpting sound.



      With microprocessor control, there's no reason not to demand full modularity out of a m-f/x unit. But I have a different head when I go to the ToneLab LE. Maybe it's those silhouetted tube outlines in the warm glow of the amber-colored display. Or the sound. Or a combination thereof.




      I'm guilty of buying things which have all sort of modularity and routing capabilities, but then end up setting them up the way I think they should be and leaving them alone.



      So as long as an MFX unit is setup the way I think it should be set up, the lack of options is not really a big deal. Case in point - Rocktron's Voodoo Valve and Chameleon - no, you can't have every effect on at the same time (which is probably good), but the placement of effects is correct in my opinion.



      IMHO, a chain should be: Comp/phaser/wah/autowah => pre-EQ => OD / Loop => Preamp => Speaker Sim => post-EQ => Noise Gate => Volume => pitch/chorus/rotary => Loop => delay => reverb.



      I laugh when I see the Noise Gate very near the beginning of the chain on Line 6 stuff - I say let the gate work on all the noise which is generated by the gain effects, not the sustain of your guitar strings!



      If Vox had gotten closer to my idea of the ultimate effects chain, with two pedals - they would have hit a home run with the SE.



      That being said, I could always patch a ToneLab desktop unit into the effects loop of my Boss GT-5 (or GT-8 all who have one of those...). That would pretty much do it right there.



      It just amazes me that MFX unit manufacturers don't enlist more input from actual guitarists.

      Comment


      • Hello, I appreciate the review and insight, I've had my eye on the LE for a while. I'm a Tonelab owner and often wondered why they didn't include a send/return, I've tried putting pedals in front of it but some of the tone gets 'sucked out.'

        The other problem I've had with the Tonelab is with recording distortion, just a bit too much digital fuzz.

        I guess the increase to 24 bit might help with this a bit. I'd love to try the LE with a Vox Cooltron (or another quality distortion pedal) plugged in the send/return. If you or anyone has given that a go, please let me know .

        What is the bit rate of the optical out on the LE, is it 44.1 as with the original Tonelab?

        Comment








        • Quote Originally Posted by ScouserJam
          View Post

          Hello everyone,



          I am also new to the TLLE -- is there an easy switch on this piece of equipment to bypass it completely? Like the previous jazzer poster, sometimes I just like to go clean through my amp without any colouring from any unit and then step on a button to turn on all the effects again, simoultaneously. Most of the time that I would be playing I would be using the unit so I realise that this isn't that big of a thing if it's not possible. Also, this may have been covered already but I'm not completely sure -- it seems to me that this unit is quite digital in its electronics. If this is true, will it change the nature of the sound that one would get from a valve amplifier. I would be very disappointed if this unit made a nice (and also expensive!) valve amplifier sound solid state.



          Thanks!




          if u were worried about the amps bypass, you could just buy a true bypass loop pedal. put the vox in the loop, that way you could still get your straight tube amp tone, then switch in the vox with the loop pedal.









          i think modelers are cool, esp the lastest vox series. the only modler i've played that felt real.



          one question i had for the owners of the pedal. the filtron setting, can you set it to the expression pedal so you get a sort of wah filter thang going on? i used to do this on a korg, and i really miss that effect, esp with some ping pong delay.... it would be sweet if someone could post clips of the expression pedal controlled filtron with some ping pong!



          dk
          I know I can't spell....

          Guitars: Schecter S-1 Elite (Black Cherry), Peavey Predator (Vintage White)
          Amps: Alamo Embassy Head, Peavey Classic VT Series 2x12" Combo
          Pedals: Digitech RP500

          Comment








          • Quote Originally Posted by Terence T
            View Post

            What is the bit rate of the optical out on the LE, is it 44.1 as with the original Tonelab?




            Yes, though that's actually the sample rate. The bit depth has been upgraded to 24 bit in the LE.









            Quote Originally Posted by dk123123dk
            View Post

            the filtron setting, can you set it to the expression pedal so you get a sort of wah filter thang going on? i used to do this on a korg, and i really miss that effect, esp with some ping pong delay.




            The Filtron effect in the ToneLab LE is exactly the same as in the Korg AX3000G (including the way the expression pedal works). Even the wording in the manuals is identical. Since Vox and Korg are owned by the same company, it's natural that they share technology, especially on the microprocessor level.
            Jon Chappell
            Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
            Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

            Comment


            • I know its a question of personal taste, but would a distortion pedal in the send/return improve the tone? I mentioned the cooltron pedal as it seems to be similar to the LE in terms of using a tube. From my non technical view, perhaps another tube in the signal would improve the sound even more?

              Comment








              • Quote Originally Posted by Terence T
                View Post

                I know its a question of personal taste, but would a distortion pedal in the send/return improve the tone? I mentioned the cooltron pedal as it seems to be similar to the LE in terms of using a tube. From my non technical view, perhaps another tube in the signal would improve the sound even more?




                You really answered your own question when you acknowledged that "improve" is a matter of taste. What the ToneLab allows through its insert (send/return) point is that flexibility. You may prefer another distortion pedal (of any make & model) to the LE's own offerings. That fine, and it's why Vox chose to put the insert in the front of the chain -- they're figuring most guitarists, if they want to add an external pedal, will add a distortion pedal. So, your setup would look like this, schematically:







                You'd create a program that turned off the modeling pedal and the amp/cab sim., using just modulation, delay, and reverb (plus any global effects, like EQ or volume pedal).



                You could even add multiple effects in this "sub-chain," such as a Brit Boost and a Duel Overdrive. But just know that all of the external effects that you put in front of the LE will get processed and packaged in a certain way when it comes out of the LE. So if you really like those tube-driven CoolTrons -- and you want to keep it pure -- go straight into the amp from the Cooltron, and keep that signal away from any other effects, LE or otherwise.
                Jon Chappell
                Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
                Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

                Comment


                • Thanks for that. My primary use for it would be straight into an EMU 1616M interface and then recording into Cubase.

                  One more question if I may. Are you saying that anything plugged into the send/return disables the amp/cab sim? If that is the case the the send/return would probably only be practical when going into an amp or PA.

                  Comment


                  • No, using the insert doesn't disable anything; I'm saying you could disable the amp/cab sim. if you wanted to hear just the CoolTron (or whatever stompbox you're using) in its purest form.



                    The 1616M is a nice unit. You should get good results when using the ToneLab LE's optical output for direct recording through the Emu and into Cubase.
                    Jon Chappell
                    Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
                    Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

                    Comment


                    • I'm presently using the original Tonelab with the EMU. The 'clean' tone results, via the optical output, combined with Nomad Factory Blue Tubes and BBE Sonic Maximiser in Cubase, are excellent.

                      The distorted tones are adequate(when recording) but not more than that.(My personal taste...). So I'm hoping the LE will work better for me when it comes to distortion combined with a good pedal or 2. I'm going to buy the LE and see how it works for me, accepting the fact that as amp modulars gos this is probably as good as it gets, for the present anyway. I'll post my thoughts and reactions when I get the unit...

                      Thanks again.

                      Comment


                      • The ToneLab LE editor/librarian is now available for the Mac (and is compatible with Intel Macs).



                        http://www.voxamps.co.uk/tonelab/tonelab_le.asp#



                        (Click on "Software Downloads.")
                        Jon Chappell
                        Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
                        Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

                        Comment


                        • Is there a optimum setting for the channel volume on the TL?. The volume select goes from 0.0 to 10.00. I realise that each sound or patch will react different to the setting of the channel volume but is there a general rule of thumb here?..Thanks.....

                          Comment








                          • Quote Originally Posted by Jess
                            View Post

                            Is there a optimum setting for the channel volume on the TL?. The volume select goes from 0.0 to 10.00. I realise that each sound or patch will react different to the setting of the channel volume but is there a general rule of thumb here?..Thanks.....




                            The ToneLab has three gain controls, and the Channel Volume acts like the "final output" control, or what you want the ultimate loudness to be. It doesn't interact in the way a gain and master volume do -- that's the function of the Gain and VR Gain.



                            So as far as a rule of thumb, I would put lead patches at a little louder than rhythm ones, distorted patches louder than clean ones. You could run your two contrasting levels at, say, 7 and 10. You're supposed to use the Channel Volume to balance sounds between patches, so you don't want to have to constantly make a volume adjustment (either with the pedal or an amp tweak), every time you switch from rhythm to lead, so experiment (you might determine 6 and 10 is better), but I'd recommend running the channel volume high (9 or 10) for your loudest setting. You paid for all those digital bits, so make them work for you.
                            Jon Chappell
                            Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/jon_chappell
                            Check out my website: http://jonchappell.com

                            Comment


                            • I am not sure what you meant when you said that the mac editor was not available.. your last post was 4/13/06 (Editor/Librarian Now Available for Mac) , i downloaded the tonelab LE editor, mac version 4 weeks ago, is there some new software that i am missing?

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                              • I have read from other posts about buffers. anyone owns one? does it do anything useful? ie. BS2 Guitar Audio Buffer/Splitter/$150.00

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