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Microphone Month 3

Multi-effects Live and at Home

Q: I spent a bunch of time carefully programming my Line 6 M13 multieffect at home, but when I took it to rehearsal everything seems like it changed. What gives?

A: There’s nothing wrong with your M13. Your perception changes compared to when you are playing solo at home or along with a recording. Once you get on a stage or into a rehearsal situation, with other live instruments and vocals, effects may be masked, the sound in the room changes how you hear things, you may play your instrument with a different intensity, the ambience of a larger space washes things together, and so on. No matter how carefully you craft your presets at home, you’ll probably have to tweak them a bit once you step on the stage.

You may want to schedule some time in the space where you are playing or rehearsing to adjust the presets to the room, but you will probably also need to make adjustments during rehearsal or performance.

The good news is that you will learn to anticipate how effects will change when you step on stage. Plus, you can still do most of your sound design at home, and then, once the presets are tweaked under “real world” rehearsal or on-stage conditions, you should be set from then on. Be sure to make a backup of your presets to your computer for safekeeping!

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