POD HD500X vs old Axe FX Ultra

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by AxiomXIII, Aug 28, 2017.

  1. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Personally, I prefer 85s. I don't know, but perhaps my ears are just burnt out on hearing ceramic magnet pickup tones boosted by a tube screamer into a metal high gain channel. If I do want to use a tube screamer style pedal still, which I have about 4 variations of that theme, I like the 85 because the bass isn't as anemic, and the midrange/treble are warmer, but not scooped. Using the tube screamer trims whatever fat an alnico magnet might have while retains some nice low midrange, instead of ending up with mostly upper mids and treble like you would with most ceramic pickups.

    Not really on topic, but eh, what can I say?
     
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  2. vick1000

    vick1000 SS.org Regular

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    You can get a new Headrush or Helix LT for close to a used Ultra. I loved my Ultra, after I fixed the loud ass and broken fan, but they are getting old and parts can fail on them. They also require a MIDI adapter to use Axe Edit. Much better than any HD500 though.
     
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  3. DudeManBrother

    DudeManBrother Blames it on "the rain"

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    I'm with you on the 85 as a bridge pickup. I was fortunate enough to play, for a while, in a band with an endorsement with EMG which got us all a few sets at no cost. I am a passive guy, but I do keep one old Prestige S1520 loaded up with EMGs just in case I need that sound. I was happy when EMG would send out the pickups because with all the solder less stuff, I can use the 85,81,85x,81x etc. and it really only takes time to loosen all the strings enough to slide the pickup out.
     
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  4. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace 0 0 1 0 0 6 5 0 3\

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    Yep, pretty much. I even enjoyed the passive sets I tried with the Alexi preamp thing. I think they call it the ABQ or whatever.

    As for the 81, the ceramic magnet + a high pass filter is just way too much. It sounds really fake.

    EDIT: With the 85 and it's alnico magnet, it works because they sorta cancel each other out, and it's not drastic enough to affect the bass and low mids too much. You still get nice chunky palm mutes. The 81 could've used a subtle low pass filter, though. More like a wide roll off rather than a steep shelving. Ceramic magnets typically have a tight low end, so it doesn't need the high pass filtering.

    Also, they should have never sold these as working with 9v; they should've insisted they only work with 18v like the Livewires or whatever they were prior to Blackouts.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2017
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