Play Electric appraisal from 'old hands'...

  1. #1 by Roberto Bugiolacchi on 12-12-2018
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    Play Electric appraisal from 'old hands'...

    Got my first TC-Helicon product, a Play Electric. I found the vocal sound and harmonies great (within the limits of current technology in pitch-shifting sounding realistically).
    However, a couple of issues are troubling me at present: given that there are no way that I can find to split the outputs of lead-vox and harmonies, I would have thought that the harmony level could have been easily controllable by a continuous controller pedal (from the pedal IN) and/or USB. If I designed it with the Live dimension as a priority, I would have made the option of controlling the ‘swell’ of the harmonies live as a high (performance) priority. Given that these options are all software-based, any chance in the future of modifying, at least, the USB protocol (and thus allowing for the development of an external editor too)?

    Regards,

    Roberto
  2. #2 by kiskadar69 on 12-13-2018
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    "there are no way that I can find to split the outputs of lead-vox and harmonies":
    I have no Play Electric, but I have the following tip:

    1.Set SETUP/OUTPUT to MONO.
    2.You probably have to set SETUP/LEAD_MUTE to On.
    3.In VOCAL FX, you probably have to turn off all effects blocks except for Harmony (ie Double, Delay, Reverb, Hardtune, Transducer, uMod).
    4.Use GUITAR OUT

    Dry lead vocal will be sent via the left XLR output. Dry harmony sounds will be sent via the right XLR output.
  3. #3 by Roberto Bugiolacchi on 12-16-2018
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    - kiskadar69 wrote View Post
    "there are no way that I can find to split the outputs of lead-vox and harmonies":
    I have no Play Electric, but I have the following tip:

    1.Set SETUP/OUTPUT to MONO.
    2.You probably have to set SETUP/LEAD_MUTE to On.
    3.In VOCAL FX, you probably have to turn off all effects blocks except for Harmony (ie Double, Delay, Reverb, Hardtune, Transducer, uMod).
    4.Use GUITAR OUT

    Dry lead vocal will be sent via the left XLR output. Dry harmony sounds will be sent via the right XLR output.
    Thanks. I am not sure about the 4. "Use GUITAR OUT". However, the idea of having a mono dry sound for the lead and harmony with not effects, even if separated, is far from ideal. Thanks anyhow.

    Another important issue I have is the following:

    In the manual you can see the first model setup with both two guitar outputs being used at the same time (the through and the effect), in the example sent to an amp (I presume in stereo). Is this a misprint? I have tried it but once you connect the direct (through) out the 'output' gets muted. It would be fantastic if BOTH dry AND effected output would be available at the same time, maybe with the effected signal to the PA and the dry to an monitor... Is it possible? Second, the manual does not specify this, but are the guitar outs stereo? In this case one would need a stereo lead splitter. Again, the manual does not explain this at all..

    Many thanks again
  4. #4 by kiskadar69 on 12-16-2018
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    "the idea of having a mono dry sound for the lead and harmony with not effects, even if separated, is far from ideal"
    If the signals are sent to a FOH mixer and a sound engineer puts the effects on them, that's enough. In such cases, I even switch off the TONE function of my TC-Helicon vocal processor.

    "It would be fantastic if BOTH dry AND effected output would be available at the same time, maybe with the effected signal to the PA and the dry to an monitor... Is it possible?"
    Play Electric's GUITAR OUT and GUITAR THRU can not be used at the same time. Use the GUITAR OUT and a DI box.

    "are the guitar outs stereo?"
    No.
  5. #5 by Roberto Bugiolacchi on 12-16-2018
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    Thanks but...

    Thank you for your continuing support. Still, I am puzzled by the design of this unit. It has incredibily intricate and sophisticated features that, arguably, are not that crucial (for instance, headphone feedback with ambient sound etc.), while very basic software-based routines are not implemented! I have a 60$ Zoom pedal which comes with a full Mac/PC editor, but the Play does not. It has a VERY generous array of four outs, but the guitar one is mono!!! I cannot believe it, since one of the selling point of the pedal is the 'lushious' sound of the internal stereo chorus, and yet, it is output MONO!
    How many more lines of code would have taken to write a simple output switching option, for instance making the two (Dry and Wet) guitar output work in stereo if required? Or better, in my case, offer the option to use at the same time the dry out, for instance, to use with a external tuner?

    On my wish list would have been the option, like many have asked, to implement a very, very simple option to pan the harmonies and lead vox, thus allowing for full separation, including effects, albeit in mono.

    I conclude back to my first point: one of the selling points obout Play ELECTRIC, is that it makes use of the wonderful TC Electronics stereo modulations and reverbs: why should they only be available mixed with vocals and harmonies when there are two guitar outs? Besides, as you know, the outs feel like they use at least balanced plugs (two 'clicks'), why not making them stereo (and in this case umbalanced)?

    Last point, sorry, given that the software is updatable by USB, why not making available (obvioulsy paying) the loading of the Acoustic version operating system? I used to own a Fisherman Acoustic pedal for draughnout out of a range of 5 other versions (classical, small bodie, etc.) when I discovered that all you needed to do was to update the internal software with the 'classical guitar' image, and presto, you had a new pedal!

    Sorry, I make much of this point on this pedal because I think it is great sounding (for the vocals, different story for the electric guitar amps simulation, I stick to the 'if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing'..). The hardware is all there, just a little extra effort from the designers? Or if they cannot be asked to update their product, why not release the code for programmers to add editors etc. via USB (making it a little business)?

    Many thanks again.
  6. #6 by Roberto Bugiolacchi on 4 Weeks Ago
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    Posts: 4

    From the online specs: guitar stereo outs...??

    "When you want your full-on guitar world, the dedicated guitar output ensures signal fidelity to your favorite amp or an FRFR (full range frequency response) cab or two - stereo is awesome."

    Where does the stereo come out, as discussed these must be the XLR outs since the dedicated guitar outs are all strictly mono (I have tried with a split cable). Still, the sentence and in the manual it shows TWO cables coming out of the guitar outs going towards two amps. How does it work?