Editing

From Fractal Audio Systems Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Editing

Eventually you’ll probably want to build your own presets. With the Axe-Fx this is easy and straightforward. There are three basic steps: placement, routing and effect editing.

Placing Effects

Press the LAYOUT button. Use the PAGE buttons to get to the EDIT page. This page shows you a portion of the routing grid. The complete grid is 4 rows by 12 columns. Effects can be placed at any position in the grid. Move the cursor using the navigation buttons until the desired block is highlighted.

To change the effect at this grid position use the value dial. As you turn the dial the effect type is displayed in an overlay box. When you reach the desired effect press ENTER to place the effect. For this example let's place a compressor. Turn the value dial until COMPRESSOR 1 is displayed. Then press ENTER to place the effect. The block should now display CMP indicating that a compressor is in this position.

You may be asking what those blocks with the lines through them are. These are called shunts and allow routing through grid positions. Additionally, shunts sum up to four inputs allowing hybrid serial/parallel routings. When no effect (or shunt) is present the grid block is represented by a dotted outline with an empty interior.

Let's place another effect in the block to the right of the compressor. Move to that position using the navigation buttons and the using the dial wheel select CHORUS 1. Press ENTER to place the effect.

Routing

The lines between blocks are routing indicators. Any effect in a column can be connected to any other effect in the adjacent columns. To create or delete a route, highlight the source effect using the navigation buttons and then press ENTER. The adjacent block in the next column will blink.

Move the blinking cursor to the desired destination block and press enter. If no route was present a route will be added. If a route was present then it will be deleted. Movement is only allowed vertically in routing mode. To cancel routing press EXIT. Note that effects in the first column are automatically connected to the input and effects in the last column are automatically connected to the output. An effect can have multiple inputs and outputs. Inputs are summed prior to processing. An empty block can not be routed from/to. Removing an effect and replacing it with an empty block will delete all routes to that block.

Auto Routing

Instead of having to manually set empty blocks to shunts to complete an effects chain the Axe-Fx contains an auto routing feature. By pressing and holding ENTER the Axe-Fx will automatically change an empty block to a shunt and place a route. Simply hold ENTER down until the chain completes routing to the output.

Moving Effects

Effects can be moved once placed. To do this select the MOVE page using the PAGE buttons. Highlight the desired block (or row or column) to be moved and then select the appropriate move function using the value dial. You do not need to create a space for the block you are moving, simply press ENTER until the block is in the desired location--the other block(s) will automatically be moved down the row. Return to the main LAYOUT page to make sure the block is where you want it. When moving a block in a complex routing the routing to that block may be destroyed. In this case you will need to restore the routing. Simply use the ENTER button as usual to reroute the block.

Editing Effects

To edit the effect press the EDIT button. This brings up the edit display for that effect. If more than one effect is present in a preset successive presses of the EDIT button will bring up the next effect's edit display. Try it.

Bring up the Chorus edit display. There are three pages in this display. The first page is the BASIC page. Most effects have a basic editing page allowing quick access to the most frequently used parameters. Use the navigation buttons to move around in the page. Change the parameter values using the value dial. To access the other pages in the display use the PAGE buttons. The chorus also has an ADV (advanced) page. This offers in-depth editing of all the parameters available in the chorus effect.

NOTE: To reset an effect to its default parameters double-click the BYPASS button.

Effect Mixer

Each effect has an output mixer. Its controls are usually on the MIX page. Use the PAGE buttons to access the MIX page. Most effects have a MIX page like this. The MIX page allows you to control the mix, level, panning and bypass mode of the effect. On some effects these controls may be duplicated on other pages as they are frequently used. Not all effects have a MIX or GLBL MIX control. These are effects that don’t mix wet and dry but just output processed (100% wet) signals. Examples are the equalizers and the Amp Simulator.

The MIX control controls the ratio of wet and dry signals. With the control fully clockwise the output signal of the effect is 100% wet meaning that only the effected signal is present. For effects like chorus, reverb, delay etc. adjust the MIX control to achieve the desired effect amount. When routing effects in parallel you'll often want to set the mix to 100% and use the LEVEL control to control the mix of that effect.

The LEVEL control controls the output level of the block. The mixed signal is increased or decreased according to this control. The proper way to set the level is to bypass the effect using the EFF BYP button and compare the levels. Adjust the level until the volume is the same with the effect active. You may desire some boost with a particular effect active (distortion for example) so you can also increase the level to achieve this.

The PAN control controls the output panning of the mixed signal. Every effect in the Axe-Fx has stereo outputs. With the control at 12:00 the signal is equal in both the left and right channels. Turning the control left or right pans the signal accordingly. The PAN control can be used to achieve complex stereo routings with different effects on the left and right.

The BYPASS mode controls the operation of the effect when the block is bypassed. There are three modes of operation for most effects:

  • MIX = 0% : In this mode the MIX control is effectively turned to 0 and the LEVEL

control to 0 dB. The block is effectively the same as a shunt in this case.

  • MUTE FX OUT : In this mode the wet signal is muted and the dry signal is

preserved at the level set by the MIX and LEVEL controls.

  • MUTE OUT : In this mode the output of the block is shut off (both wet and dry

muted).

  • MUTE FX IN : In this mode the effects input of the block is muted and the dry

signal is preserved at the level set by the MIX and LEVEL controls. Only the Reverb, Delay and Pitch blocks have this mode. This allows the effect to continue after the effect has been bypassed. This mode can be used, for example, to allow a delay to continue after the block is bypassed without abruptly cutting off.

  • MUTE IN : This mode mutes all data into the block when the block is bypassed

For effects like Chorus, Flanger, etc. MIX = 0% is the most effective mode when used in a series configuration. Use the Level control to balance the effect volume between normal and bypassed states.

For effects like Delay and Reverb, the MUTE EFF or MUTE IN modes are usually the most effective as the dry level is unaltered allowing the effect to be turned on or off without changing the direct signal level.

For non-mixable effects such as equalization (Graphic EQ, Wah), distortion (Amplifier) and Cabinet Emulation the bypass mode is one of two states:

  • THRU : In this mode bypassing the effect effectively turns the effect into a shunt.
  • MUTE : Mutes the output of the effect.

To bypass an effect press the EFF BYP button. Press it again to activate the effect. Effects can also be bypassed remotely using external controllers (i.e. MIDI continuous controllers). If an effect doesn't seem to be doing anything make sure it hasn't been bypassed accidentally. A bypassed effect will have a dotted outline in the layout EDIT page and in the effect page the effect name will alternate with the word “BYPASSED”.

The rightmost switch on the MIX page is labeled GLBL MIX. This is the global mix control enable for the block. When on, the mix for this block will be altered by the Global Mix control. This is used to allow overall mixing of effects to compensate for venue differences. For example, you've tweaked your patch "MY MONSTER SOUND" in your rehearsal studio and everyone thinks it sounds great. You then get out to the gig and the effects are too prominent because the room has hard floors and tin ceilings. What do you do? One solution is to frantically edit the patch going through each block and adjusting the mixes. OR… since you previously turned on GLBL MIX on the desired effects blocks you have a "master" effects control at your disposal. We'll talk more about the Global Parameters later.

Output Mixer

The main output has a four channel mixer for fine-tuning a preset’s mix. It is accessed from the LAYOUT menu on the MIX page. Each row in the layout has it’s own individual level and pan control. The overall level of the preset can be controlled using the MAIN slider.

Attaching Controllers

To attach a controller select the knob that you would like to control and press ENTER. If that parameter is capable of being controlled (indicated by the -[ ]- icon below the knob) you will be taken to the MODIFIER menu to select the control parameters. See the Controllers and Modifiers chapter for more details.

Controllable Parameter.jpg

Saving Presets

All editing in the Axe-Fx modifies data in what’s known as the “edit buffer”. Upon saving, the contents of the edit buffer are written to a memory location. If a new preset is recalled prior to saving all the edits are lost. Recalling a preset loads the data from that preset into the edit buffer. To save a preset press the STORE button. This brings up the STORE menu. The LOCATION box contains the preset location at which the edit buffer will be stored. Next to that is the name of the preset currently at that location (if any). If the preset is empty the name will say “EMPTY”. To save at a different location turn the value daily to modify the location number. To save your changes press the ENTER button.

The NAME box contains the name of the preset as stored in the edit buffer. To change the name select the character you wish to change with the navigation buttons and turn the value dial to alter the character. For convenience, the PAGE buttons have been set to "jump" through the character selection, reducing the amount of scrolling necessary with the dial.

Recalling Presets

Recalling a preset on the Axe-Fx is done simply by pressing the RECALL button and turning the dial until the desired preset is selected.

The Axe-Fx features and “Effects Recall” function. This allows the parameters of an effect in a preset to copied into the edit buffer. To use this feature simply navigate to the EFFECT tab under the RECALL menu. Select the preset that you wish to load from and the effect in that preset that you wish to load, and then press ENTER. The parameters of that effect will be loaded into the same effect in the edit buffer.

This is useful when you have an effect set up just the way you like it and only want to copy that effect into a preset you are building. Also note that any modifiers that are connected to the effect will be copied as well greatly simplifying preset construction. button. This brings up the edit display for that effect. If more than one effect is present in a preset successive presses of the EDIT button will bring up the next effect's edit display. Try it.

Bring up the Chorus edit display. There are three pages in this display. The first page is the BASIC page. Most effects have a basic editing page allowing quick access to the most frequently used parameters. Use the navigation buttons to move around in the page. Change the parameter values using the value dial. To access the other pages in the display use the PAGE buttons. The chorus also has an ADV (advanced) page. This offers in-depth editing of all the parameters available in the chorus effect.