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StompBoxZone • View topic - Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Synths, Recording Gear...

Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:50 pm

It's arrived!

Haven't had a chance to try it yet... will do by the weekend. Will do a full review over the next few weeks.

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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Dirk » Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:31 am

That's a preamp/FX unit right?

What do you use for power/speakers or do use headphones or hook it up to your recording setup/mixer/computer, whatever you have?
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby sclitheroe » Thu Apr 10, 2014 3:58 pm

Looking forward to your review!
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:22 pm

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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby sclitheroe » Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:07 pm

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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Fri Apr 11, 2014 11:16 pm

Initial impressions... a pain to get working - the setup to connect the foot-controller took half an hour. Deeply technical machine.

But.

This thing is unbelievable.

I've owned Bassmen, Twins, Rectos, JCM800s... and it sounds and feels just like the actual amps. ALL the nuances. Or if not all, the bits that are missing are undetectable.

Presets seem to repeat the echo/detune/reverb theme too many times, but in among them are some really (really) credible tones. Just like the record - for bands as diverse as Yes to ZZ Top.

I'm babbling. It's hard not to. This thing is fantastically, mind-bendingly expensive. To the point where I have to sell two non-trivial guitars, a bass and an amp to pay for it. Is it worth it? So far a resounding yes. I believe it may be able to cure me of pedals.

I am very glad I stretched and bought the foot-controller. It's a very useful thing.
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Dirk » Sat Apr 12, 2014 12:23 am

Good to hear that you like it so far. :thumbs:

I know that Megadeth guitarist Chris Broderick also uses this system.
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Sat Apr 12, 2014 9:20 am

I've been playing it all morning (about 2 hours) through good quality headphones.

I have no (zero) aural fatigue. I've owned PODs, GT-8, GT-10, Alesis Quadraverb GT, etc. Everything else has burned me out after half an hour with phones. It really is very good.

Some of the presets are just amazing. I particularly like one called Satans Hollow. Elegant Gypsy is also very nice to play.

It is the first effect box that sustains like a real amp ... using headphones so there is no acoustic coupling between the guitar and amp. Just amazing.

Verdict so far - it will make me play and turn me into a better guitarist.
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Sun Apr 13, 2014 11:43 am

There is a patch on this thing called "Mr. Z 38".

I have a Dr. Z Maz 18 2x10 and I love it. It's been my go-to amp for years. The Mr. Z 38 patch sounds better, and is nicer to play. Kicking on the "drive" is better than my Maz 18 cooking through a Dr. Z air-brake. The crunch is absolutely delightful.

I am blown away.

I'm more convinced than ever that I can sell my Maz 18 plus air-brake to help pay for the Axe-Fx.

=====

The more I use the MFC controller the more I like it. Tuner is crisp. Better than a TU tuner I think.

I bought an FV-500H yesterday and hooked it up as exp1 and it works flawlessly. I'll get another one so I have volume plus wah.
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Re: Fractal Axe-FX II XL

Postby Laurie » Sun Apr 20, 2014 5:00 pm

Tried it with the JC-120. Needed to turn the cab modelling off otherwise it sounded too dark. It sounds good. I think it will be even better with PA speakers and cab modelling on though... Will report back on that.
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