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jambomarc 12-10-2012 01:34 PM

Line 6 HD500 - right for me?
Hey guys. This might be long but I need ur advice! I play in 2 bands, a cover band ranging from pop/blues right through to punk/rock. I'm also in an original hard rock/metal band and were looking to record demos. Currently I play through my Korg AX1500G pedalboard into a Marshall DSL 2000 with 1960a cab. I use the distortion tones on my Korg and always play through the amp on clean channel with everything 12 o'clock. This is because the Marshall doesn't have that modern metal tone I'm after for my original band. I'm saving for a dual rectifier in the long term so was gonna get a good distortion pedal for the meantime. Then I saw the HD500! This looks good as it has the mesa tones I'm after and looks a step up from my Korg!! It also has the range I need for my cover band. I've heard it's not great for live use so this worries me!! But surely its better than the Korg? Also, I was told the HD500 can be used as a footboard to control multiple standalone pedals at once, but I'm not sure if this I'd true? Finally, for effect pedals like the Korg and HD500, is it better to plug into the guitar input or fx return on my amp? Cheers!!

fly135 12-10-2012 01:38 PM

Not sure how it can control multiple standalone pedals, but it has a stomp loop that can enable/disable the stomp chain. Or it can send midi control messages. The Zoom G5 can give you some great metal tones for less money. But no stomp loop or midi control.

jambomarc 12-10-2012 02:21 PM

So u would recommend a G5 over HD500?

fly135 12-10-2012 02:54 PM

Depends on your needs. The only thing the G5 has over the HD500 is price (about $200 cheaper) and the drum machine synced to the looper. If you need the stomp and amp loops, midi control, or more convenient patch/bank changes then the HD500 is better.

And yes, sometimes it's better to go into the FX return. It depends on the amp, the FX unit settings, and your ear.

KorYi 12-10-2012 03:14 PM

Originally Posted by jambomarc
Also, I was told the HD500 can be used as a footboard to control multiple standalone pedals at once, but I'm not sure if this I'd true? Finally, for effect pedals like the Korg and HD500, is it better to plug into the guitar input or fx return on my amp? Cheers!!

multiple effects - not sure what you mean, but it has a MIDI in/out and you can use it as a MIDI controller (or control it with other midi devices). You can also plug several pedals into the effects loop (on the HD500) and turn that on/off. You can also set up several effects on the HD500 to one footswitch (like switching reverb, delay and overdrive pedal for solo with one switch).

second question: well, generally: distortion, noise gaite, pitch changing effects, etc go before the amp, delay, reverb, etc go behind the amp. With HD500, you can actually set it up for both cases (having whole unit before preamp and having whole unit in loop) and it should sound the same (with correct settings). You can also use the 4-cable method (guitar->POD->amp input->POD effects loop->amp effects loop->cab). This is great if you want to use the amp distortion, otherwise it doesn't really matter how you plug it in, as long as you like the result.

MrFlibble 12-10-2012 04:32 PM

Really the HD500 is designed to be used as your all-in-one amp and effects. If you're going to be dragging along a big head and a pedalboard as well then it rather defeats the point.

It seems like really all you need is a decent distortion pedal to stick in front of the JCM2000. A dedicated distortion pedal will sound better than the HD500 (trust me, I've used Line 6 gear for a long time and love it, but as with anything in life, one product made for one purpose is always going to do a better job than a jack-of-all-trades).
Check out the DigiTech Hardwire TL-2 if you want really absurd distortion, or try the Blackstar HT-DISTX for slightly more controlled distortion with actual valve response. Run either of them into the clean channel of the amp with the 'pushed' switch out, tone shift switch out, deep switch on and the EQ controls all set either totally maxed or halfway (halfway may be better to control excess noise and bass boom, but it'll squash the sound a little).

Though I think you might want to take another look at your amp, anyway. I had a JCM2000 DSL100 and had no problem getting modern metal tones out of it. Try the second channel with the lead 2 switch in, the deep switch on, the tone shift on, the bass at about 3 o'clock, the mids at about 8 o'clock, treble and presence both at around 2 o'clock and set the gain around 2 o'clock, or higher or lower to match the output of the guitar.
Don't forget that cranking the volume will exaggerate the distortion and valve compression, and you need that for any kind of 'metal' tone. If you're playing at bedroom levels then it's no surprise you can't get a good metal tone; try it at gig levels and you'll probably find you don't need another pedal of any kind.

jambomarc 12-11-2012 07:58 AM

Ok, cheers for the advice guys!!

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