Elantric's Tips and Blog

Started by Elantric, May 27, 2012, 07:16:34 AM

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How to Navigate VGuitarforums

Even non member "Guests" stumble in here and read this thread after a Google Search on "GR-55 Guitar to MIDI"

There is pro-active organization of placing important threads with Reference Materials to gain knowledge on a specific subject in the
"Top Things to Know " areas here for popular processors  - to ease finding important information.

The GR-55 FAQ thread is a must read

VGuitarForums Glossary of Terms

EDIT: Get External Inline GK  Input Subsonic Filter here:

DR Joness  Filter/Buffer - Guitar Synthesizer Processor with Subsonic Filters, Auxiliary Inputs and Master Effects Loop

CodeSmart GKFX-11 Subsonic Filter

QuoteI'm completely new to gk3/midi setups.

For "newbies" - Its best to watch all the related youtube videos on the other related Roland VG/GR gear  - as these have been out there much longer and most of us here have been using VG / GR hex PU devices over 30 years.   

Here is a good list of starting reference material for new GP-10 users :

Roland Canada VG-99 Tutorials

Roland GR-55 Training Videos


Roland COSM Reference Library

Read ALL the docs in the Roland COSM Library thread  - that has links to PDF docs that explain all VG/GR/GP/GT features in far greater detail

Roland GS-10 COSM dynamic processor

Roland GS-10 COSM Speaker


Boss_GT-8 Brilliance.pdf

Learn about the Roland / Boss "Internal Pedal" and "Wave Pedal" here:



Based on recent questions like  :
"Where do I find Discussions on Guitar Modeling?"
"How to get my GR-55 Guitar output Jack to Work?
" Where is the user to user patch exchange?

And Stats  - It would appear our Home page (see below)  is the least visited area of the forum


The Vguitarforums Homepage includes a "NEWS area at the top,  which apparently most folks never read/ see - since they surf in here to vguitarforums via google to a specific post, and never bother to check out the Vguitarforums home page.

We have other important links in the News area that auto update every 15 seconds to a new important URL link of important information like:

Boss GP-10 F.A.Q.

GR-55 F.A.Q.

GR-55 FloorBoard Editor Help

* GR-55 Documentation Library
Download and Read ALL GR-55 Setup docs here - these are only available here at VGuitarForums and developed by our members 

*GR-55 Control Assignments

VG-99 F.A.Q.

Fishman Tripleplay F.A.Q.

How to read all recent posts

How to use Advanced Search

Tyler Variax HD Workbench Patches

VGuitarforums Members Only Group Buys

Many forget - but you MUST be consistent and use the Exact same physical USB Port on your PC/Mac that was used during the GP-10 USB  driver install.

If you forget,  and attempt to plug any Roland VG/GR/GP/GT product  to your computer using the "wrong" USB port"  = failure to load the Roland USB driver.

Thought I would start a thread with a collection of my past present and future tips and free advice. This might look redundant to old timers, but in the future I hope to be  adding more and more here.
Although it could be argue'ed that one could simply click on my profile name, and then click on "Show Posts",
and just spend a few days reading those.  True my opinions are often the polar opposite of what others will think, and it has ruffled feathers in many camps. Also pardon me from locking this thread, so only i get to post here -  But hey its my Blog!

My Bio

The story of VGuitarForums

Newbie help

How to always see all "Recent Posts"

1) Click "Home"

2) Scroll / Page down all the way to the bottom of the page.

3) Find the area called "Recent Posts"

4) Click on the 45 degree stack of paper "Icon" underneath the text "Recent Posts" (see on far left here).

or here:

5) Finally you will see 10 pages of All Recent Posts, and all the contents, sorted recent ones first, regardless of the specific Topic or Board these were posted.

Its absolutely crucial to review all the files included in the downloaded file from the Main Roland site.


Bulk of user problems with no connectivity to the Editor or Audio/Midi problems can be all traced back to the user ignoring to read these installation instructions provided by Roland - but it seems many folks never see/read them. 

Many times they include a "Readme.htm" file that gets extracted when you un-archive the zip file. These are the Roland Installation Instructions and  must be viewed in a web browser and the user must follow all the step by step instructions in the exact order they describe - else failure.

MUST Read  - Roland COSM Reference Library

GR-55 F.A.Q.

* How to prepare your new 13 pin cable prior to use:

* Make your GK-3 "Guitar/Mix/Synth" Switch work with GR-55 Work (step by step)

* How to enable  the GR-55 "Guitar Output" jack:

* Guitar Out Noise in Live Rigs

*I should note that the Metal guys report the GR-55 Guitar Out is noisy when feeding their ultra high gain Tube amps on Lead channel. An external Noise gate pedal in front of the Tube preamp may be required if you play metal or lots of hi gain.

* GR-55 - Configure MIDI Program Changes and MIDI CC# Transmission

* Debug GR-55 MIDI Transmission data with a third party free MIDI Monitor:
Windows - MIDI-OX

*GR-55 Control Assignments

* GR-55 Ultimate Multi Control patches (solves the GR-55 long Patch change delay (with mute) issue)

* Guitarplayer_10's  GR-55 Ultimate Multi Control patch step by step

* GR-55 User Created Guitar Patches:

* Get all the GR-55 Guitar Mode Forum Patches Here

* GR-55 User Created Documents Downloads area

GR-55 Mods
*  Add a Normal Guitar Input jack on your GR-55

* DIY GR-55 guitar pickup input output fx loop Mod with Pictures!

Roland Social Network Contact Links

Roland Corporation U.S.
5100 S. Eastern Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90040-2938
Customer Service Tel: (323) 890-3700

Roland & BOSS U.S. Service Center
2530 E Lindsay Privado Unit A
Ontario, CA 91761
(323) 890-3771

Roland Canada
parts  604-270-6626, ext. 108 ---
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM PST 

Roland Australia
: +61 (0) 2 9982 8266
: +61 (0) 2 9981 1875
: zachary.odgers@roland.com
: rolandcorp.com.au
: au.boss.info

Fender Customer service in Arizona
Fender Musical Instruments Corporation
Attn: Consumer Relations Dept.
17600 N. Perimeter Drive, Suite 100
Scottsdale, AZ 85255
Telephone: (480) 596-7195
Fax: (480) 367-5262
E-mail: consumerrelations@fender.com


The Godin Guitar Company
19420 Avenue Clark-Graham
Baie-D'Urfe Quebec Canada
      H9X 3R8

Tel (514) 457-7977 ext.135
Fax (514) 457-5774


RMC Pickups

or write us at

RMC Pickup Co.
1739 Addison #15
Berkeley CA 94703

Remember No forum post, photos, spoken words, MP3 audio recordings, or Youtube videos can effectively communicate or act as a substitute for real hands on experience and actual one on one "play time" with any piece of music gear you intend to use to create "your sound" for recordings or live performance use.

At this time ( July 2014) the Boss GP-10 is just another tool, I've determined its exactly the right tool for my specific needs. 

I'll leave it to a guitar center salesman to convince you to use "Gear A" over "Gear B".

I'm just reporting what gear I'm currently focused on using for my specific needs and requirements , and how I'm accomplishing those goals. 

If I'm playing live, I want the Guitar with hex PU to be focused on having the option to augment my straight guitar tone (using normal pickups) with Fast Acting On Guitar Control for my occasional Synth use. Since I tend to play in small trios, I often change my guitar tone or engage / disengage the Synth Voices several times during each song.   
Its extremely effective to have a dedicated 3 way "Guitar / Mix / Synth" switch mounted on the guitar, as I may use this switch for Synth guitar solos, or Horn stabs at the end of each chorus, or Steve Stevens (Billy Idol) type FX mid solo. But 80% of the time I'm playing straight guitar  - the synth aspect can get boring if over used. Ive seen audiences leave early if they cant wrap their brain around: "who is playing the keyboard parts?"   

I find Guitars with hex PU that lack this important 3-way switch less desirable and too clumsy for live use. and "pan pots" for "Guitar  to Synth" are just too sluggish to use for my playing style at a live show.
I feel the Fender Roland Ready Strats controls provide  a minimum set of controls I rely on, they got it right.

I have plenty of dedicated "Synth Only" Guitar shaped controllers that I use at home in the studio, but these stay home since they can not easily deliver normal guitar sounds too.

In today's world, I only bring the minimum gear to setup / tear down at the gigs so I prefer to bring one guitar that satisfies all my needs for the show.

Also a note about the distinction between topics in "General Discussion"area vs the  "Top Things To Know" area.
I feel if a thread contains IMPORTANT information, I will move this to the Top Things To Know area.
If the thread with crucial information were left in the Discussion area, in three months it would be buried and forgotten among the hundreds of other existing threads in Discussion area.

My philosophy is the "Top Things To Know" areas here at VGuitarForums should be the "Go To" Areas to learn important  Essential  / Crucial techniques and operational concepts.
We can continue to discuss ANY Topic in Any thread - Even those threads which have been moved to the "Top Things To Know" areas.


With all my Gear I always

1)  Read the Manual

2)  Update to the latest  Firmware

3) Install all the official apps and follow along with the owners manual  -  Exploring all the features and follow the official work flow operational "paradigm" - and get comfortable that the product actually works

Only after I have accomplished all three things above - that's when I pursue alternate creative ways to use the tool


Fix your Audio Ground Loop Buzzes and Noises

USB Noise - audio output has enormous noise with USB cable connected

In "Roland speak" ,  the term  "GK" means  ANY 13 PIN GUITAR ( Piezo, magnetic, or photo-optic hex PU) requires the GK TYPE setting to be correctly set on your "GK Processor" ( GP-10, GR-55 VG-99, VG-88) to match your "GK" 13 pin Guitar  ( Piezo, magnetic, or photo-optic hex PU)

Refer to your GK Processor's  Owners Manual for the topic "GK SETTINGS" or "GK TYPE" - for instructions on these crucial settings.
Here is full list of "GK" Guitars

Optimal GK TYPE Hex Pickup Settings.


Read my opinions on New Computers for Music here:

Have too much gear and no time to read all the Owner's manuals?

I load the Owners manual up in Adobe Acrobat Reader, and simply CTRL+F to bring up the search tool to only read the topic I'm interested in.

I will also use the text to speech processor built into all recent versions of Adobe Acrobat  - Open up a new PDF  User manual  and  let the computer read it out loud to me.  I may use my 900MHz wireless headphones and be mobile around the house as I listen to my PDF Owners Manuals being read aloud to me.


If I'm doing other tasks, (like cleaning, laundry, chores)  In this manner I  can grasp functional concepts of the new gear much faster, then - when I'm finally able to sit down and play with it later - i have a head start as I use "Find text" in Acrobat to fine tune my knowledge and master the unit in question.   

FWIW - the Mac with OSX (and any IOS5 device - iPhone, Ipad, Ipod Touch) can read aloud any text you highlight on the screen , and read entire documents  with a much clearer voice I can understand 90% of the time  I do that all the time  - rather like having a  "books on tape" version of my all my Owners manuals.

Prior to my iPhone, i would make MP3 recordings of these - so i could listen on headphones at work at my day gig.
But the recent IOS5 has a method of enabling text to speech right on the device. 

And these days there is always youtube.

Need an answer fast for your new audio toy? Download the product Owners Manual (PDF), then launch in Acrobat Reader and use Search on the term of interest.

Remember All These devices provide icing, a few more colors to your "sonic artist palette" - not talent, and you certainly don't need anything on this entire forum to find a job and much success as a working professional guitarist.

Speaking from experience - if not kept in check, its too easy to be stuck in an endless cycle of G.A.S -   with its never ending stack of manuals to read , only to discover the "known bugs" the manufacturer will never tell you exists, which forces you to find yet another solution -  can actually hinder your progress as a musician.

Remember Music is a means of non verbal communication.  Advanced musicians with soul and mastery of their instrument can instantly move the human spirit like a puppet master.  - don't fall into the trap of thinking that stepping on that shiny new FX pedal will ever replace learning new scales, studying harmony and composition, and improvisation, working on your timing, learn how to listen to the rest of your band and find your role to contribute everything you can to each bar and measure of the song you are currently playing  - often that means channeling the gods, and knowing when to play a spontaneous improve solo that blows peoples minds, or play one well placed chord stab, or just one note, or  know when its best to stand still and play nothing at all.


I abandoned further effort on all IOS/ USB Audio Interfaces that restrict all Audio I/O to iPad to 16 bits - Modern IOS Amp Sims ( Positive Grid BIAS/JAMUP PRO) reveal the shortcomings of 16 bit USB Audio. The latest iPads running IOS6-7 now support Multi-channel 24 bit Audio.

You need 24 bits to run Modern IOS Guitar Amp Sims to get anywhere near a Kemper experience using Positive Grid Bias.  16 bits reveals its sonic limitations under this specific condition

Here's a rundown of my own discovered work around on trying to successfully get 3 different iPads (and now an Iphone 6 Plus on IOS 8 )  working with USB Class Compliant Audio and MIDI gear


Being a Guitarist today - you just need to think like an modern Auto Mechanic and be well rounded with knowledge of hand tools and computers.

Which is:  Know all the tools at your disposal, be equally proficient with your Live bar band Guitar amp and stomp FX, and know LA/Nashville/NYC / Muscle Shoals  / Memphis / Abbey Road Studio Production Techniques , and be the Geek and understand audio engineering and laws of physics and their implications for making music in 2014

competent Variax Luthier, like

Thermal Relief Guitar
730 West Cheyenne Ave. Suite #120 N. Las Vegas NV, 89030
(702) 395-7005


Training Videos

MUST Read  - Roland COSM Reference Library

other good resource of info.


But I can tell you SRV never had to worry about this $%^& , but he had equal trial and error before he hit it big.

Not all unusual Guitar techniques require super Hi tech - check out these vids of Paolo Angeli using a custom guitar with Cello Bridge  / strings and motorcycle clutch cable pedals.
Tra una gamba e l'altra (Paolo Angeli)


one of my favorite street performaers

And know that for most of the knowledge dispensed here is more targeted to "Guitar Techs" and not Artists - but when you are starting out - you have do do it all with tools available at your disposal - even if you find in 2014 the crucial critical path is a 51 year old '63 tube reverb

While Im passing out tips - I highly recommend Scribd.com  - as its a huge repository of Knowledge.

Its great to finally locate PDF versions of bulk of my Reference Library bookshelf,


It used to be free  - but last year they made it a subscription site, but its well worth the annual $60 fee.



I have found the "fast track" to gaining knowledge on any piece of gear you own, or are considering.

Use a search tool - at present I still use Google 99% of the time .

As a PCB Designer by trade, Im more visually oriented (Yes a Picture  =  a thousand words)

I will often begin my search using Google Image  Search:

For example - lets say I wanted to learn about VG-99, so I would use the search term in quotes "VG-99 Audio Routing" in Google and Click "Images" - and I will see this page.

Well, just like the saying:  "Life is what happens while you were busy making other plans "

Among the mass of images, this one looks interesting and something I have not seen before:

So I click the pic and it takes me to the site with more details on a nice compact mobile VG-99, EMU Proteus rig by our forum member musicman65 (CruzerRocks), which i think is worth reading.


Also you may have noticed many of my posts include screen shots or pics from PhotoBucket. now using  snapagogo.com

Look here for more

Roland GR-55 pics

We all should know many gear forums are often filled with more Trolls and self serving egos, than actual real shared hands on knowledge and good advice. I call that type forum as having  a poor "signal to noise" ratio.

But when i do find someone who posts good solid advice, I will remember the name of that user, and try to search for more info on what that person might have shared about other concepts.
If I'm a member of that forum i will always click on their user name and "show posts" - and I often find that I can gain a lot of useful information rapidly, instead of wading thru page after page of arguments and counterpoints and drivel.

Conversely  - if I find a user on some forum who may appear to never posts anything constructive,  I may click on their user name and "show posts" and scan a few pages to see if they are nothing but a Troll.

On some forums, you can setup an option for - Never show posts by "insert name of troll" - and that helps you maximize your time by only reading valuable posts - instead of getting sucked into someone else's battle.

For example - here at VGuitarforums, we have few folks who are very disciplined and have taken the time to contribute great stuff.

At this hour (May 2012) I would suggest "scanning" all posts by these members, as I feel they have contributed their fare share of  good solid info  (PM me if i omitted anyone else)   

Brent  Flash


Jim Williams

Bill Ruppert


Vance G







A to the T



fokof (good Bass info)

I try to read every post here, and very happy we have a good community of helpful members - Im sure I have forgotten many other great contributors. 

In my pursuit of sound - we find the same guys are always getting the latest toys, and these are a few names I trust and read frequently on the internet.

Peter Kirn


Scott Peterson

Ben Vesco (Malhavoc)

Tom Engdahl




Dieter Waechter (GSP-2101 Mods)

Zoetrope (Zoom Info)

At the Kemper Amp Forum
#1 would be read all posts by Chris Kemper:

#2 Read all posts by Bill Ruppert:

#3 Read all posts by Senior moderator  Guitarnet70:

#4 Read all posts in the Troubleshooting section:

Do that and you will find that 99% of your KPA questions / problems will have already been covered and solved / answered.

Often I find the "fast track" to locate info  / posts / patches submitted by others is click on their user name to jump to a users Profile - here is Smash's

Then look on the far left -  click "Show Posts"

Then I navigate and browse and often the info I need is right there.
Neal Schon Live 2012 patch

Search on  "Patch" will take you to these areas of VGuitarforums

Boss GP-10 Patches

Boss GT Series (older models) - Patch Exchange

GR-55 Guitar Mode Patch Exchange

GR-55 Bass Mode Patch Exchange

Roland VG-8 Patch Exchange

Roland VG-88 Patch Exchange

Roland VG-99 GK 13 Input Patch Exchange

Roland VG-99 Mag PU 1/4" Input Patch Exchange

Roland VB-99 Bass Patch Exchange

Original Variax Workbench Patch Exchange

Tyler Variax WorkBench HD Patch Exchange



Free neck radius gauges you print out

Custom Pick Guards at PickGuardian


Get the straight dope on new IT tech.



Here is a partial list of USB Class Compliant Audio Devices.

Starting with IOS 4.1, Apple placed a restriction on the amount of power an external USB device can draw from the  Iphone / Ipad's Dock port  / Lightning port to 200mA  MAX.

To overcome this external USB device power restriction, use a Powered USB Hub between the Apple USB Camera Adapter and the Target USB Class Compliant Audio Device.

Background: Here is a site which explains typical USB Client USB architecture, and how many USB Audio and MIDI devices USB - UART chips are powered.

and a typical schematic:

At the top of the schematic above, you see an Arrow with the signal USB_5VOUT, this is the power coming in from the USB port (H1), which in our case is the IPAD. Many USB Audio and MIDI device's internal USB - UART chips (like U6 above) must be powered by the external USB Host device, and some of these chips draw excess of 200mA "in-rush current" momentarily while bulk 4.7uF Capacitors become charged, so you must use a Powered USB Hub which often can provide +5V @ 500mA, far in excess of the limited USB 5V @ 200mA supply current available by iPhone / iPad USB Camera Connection Kit adapters.

For mobility, I prefer a "self -powered" four AAA Battery operated  - Powered USB Hub with my iPad and some USB Class Compliant devices which require it.

I use a hard to find CyberPower Mobile Battery Powered 4-Port USB Hub (CP-H420MP)


Here are plans for similar tech


Its really hit or miss on knowing which USB Audio / MIDI devices require the Powered USB Hub, and which ones dont.
To work with Ipad, many AC Powered USB Audio / MIDI Devices still require an external third party Powered USB Hub to power their internal USB - UART chips's  "in-rush current" for their bulk 4.7uF Capacitors.

More reading
So how did I get the Audio 2 interface to work with the iPad?

The problem seems to be an odd combination of power, initialization of the audio 2 interface and the way IOS 8.1 handles usb in general. (yes the prefs of Djay 2 didn't have anything to do with it but hey! you can backup your analysis data like a pro now).

If the iPad is fully charged there is no problem. If your battery indicates roughly 96% or less it will become an issue. The iPad will start the draw charging power from the Audio 2 interface and that seems to come at a price. The Audio 2 interface is rated for use with DC power 9V-20V. So we are all using those cheap 12V 1.5 Amp wall outlet adapters (I used one that came with an external harddrive). Well not so fast. When the iPad is charging it uses a lot of current and with cheap adapters the voltage will quickly collapse. Especially if Djay 2 is active. So you need a more robust power supply. This will also prevent you from getting humming sounds that can plague the master output. I use an 19V 2 Amp power supply that came with an Toshiba Laptop. No humming works perfectly even if the iPad is charging.
The Audio 2 interface will not initialize properly if it is only connected to an iPad and that iPad is running on roughly 96% battery or less.

Here are the steps to make it all work:

1 make sure all active application on the iPad are closed (double click home button and swipe them up to quit)

2 shut down the iPad (hold the top button untill turn off appears and turn it off). Completely shutting down might take a while a dim wait circle is visible.

3 connect the Native Instruments Audio 2 interface to the iPad (and connect the main output to whatever amplifier you want to use, the headphone connection to the headphones). Make sure you've read and understood what I wrote about power usage and adapters.

4 turn the iPad on and wait until it has started up

5 Confirm that physical audio volume on the iPad (right hand side top buttons) is all the way up and not muted. It turns out that the physical mute and volume buttons on the ipad are passed through to the Audio 2 interface (took me quiet a while to figure that one out).

6 start the music app (the default music app on your iPad aka iTunes). Start a song and make sure that you can hear it though the output of the Audio 2 interface (the green light will litt up on the beat if you don't have the Audio 2 connected to an amplifier. You can use this as a visual confirmation). If the sound is coming from the headphone connector (and is muted) then you have a POWER issue. read above about the power issues! and start from step 1.

6 quit the music app (swipe up) and start Djay 2. Check in settings that the audio interface is recognized (picture 0. interface recognized)

7 Load a song on one of the decks and turn it on. Most likely you will NOT hear a thing. Confirm the Vue meter of the playing deck is having audio and the mix slider is toward the playing deck (so you should have heard the music play picture 1. mixer on).

8 go to the preferences and turn down the "Master Volume" down a bit. (picture 2. Master volume down a nodge)
THERE is your audio :) Master output works now and you can adjust the level of the master volume as needed. I like to leave some headroom for the extra bang so I usually put it at 85%. Leave the settings we will make the headphones work now.

9 Move the mixer slider to the opposite direction of the playing deck (so no audio from the master) then move it to the middle a tiny bit (so you can hear some muted audio from the master). (see picture; 3 Mixer almost off)

10 goto settings again and make sure under "Advanced" the "Show Cue/Mix Slider" is on (picture 4. show cue/mix slider) leave settings

11 goto settings. under "pre-cueing" put both sliders to the middle. (picture 5. cue in the midle)

12 when you put your headphone on your ears you might hear some dim sound. This is dripping in from the master output. On the physical Audio 2 interface box turn the headphone volume dial (the one on the right side of the box) all the way up (max cueing volume level from the headphone). Then goto the dial on the left side (the one that mixes cue with master output) turn it all the way up (meaning cue audio only).
Basically turn the volume of the headphone all the way up on the physical interface box (you can see the green light under headphone litt up) and then make the headphone audio cue only (the green light goes off again).

13 Now the Audio 2 interface should be properly initialized (that was what the turning dials in step 12 is for). In Djay press a playing deck's headphone icon in order to cue that deck. That should work now but some master output might be audible as well.

14 Goto settings under "pre-cueing" turn the first slider all the way to the right (max volume headphone) or any volume you prefer. And turn the mix slider all the way to "cue" (left) or anyway you like it.

If you did all steps above all should work. In my configuration its 100% reproducible. (picture 6. my settings)

It all comes down to initializing the audio 2 interface manually and power regulations introduced in ios 8. I think Native instrument's Traktor sends some kind of proprietary reset command to the audio 2 interface box in order to initialize the interface. Keep in mind that if the Audio 2 interface has no power (= not connected to iPad and no power supply connected) it will lose its settings and you'll have to start over again. To cut back time before performing you can start with step 5 (so you don't reboot the iPad) if that fails you have to start at step 1.

Just another tip:
If you are working clubs / festivals with serious PA equipment and you want to use your laptop/ipad/iphone then get rid of line signal levels as soon as possible so you don't introduce (unintended?) noise and humming. I carry an stereo Direct Injection Box (DIB) with ground loop isolator with me. These boxes are cheap (Eu 45,-). Work without batteries and convert the line level signal to 2 XLR signals. My box is the SDI-1 by SYNC Audio Research and I can highly recommend it (no affiliation but donations are always appreciated).Keep your line leads as short as possible (and away from the power supply)

Now all I want is the ability to make multiple cue lists for different gigs.



twitter @ATGR_Production

But not every USB Class Compliant Audio device needs the Powered USB Hub.
See this link below for a list of Ipad compatible Audio interfaces and look at the column "Works without Powered Hub?"

I can tell you the following all work directly with iPad+USB Camera Adapter without need for an external Powered USB Hub.

Vox VXII Amp

Fender G-DEC 3

Korg Pandora PX5D

Fender Mustang Amps and Mustang Floor

also for reference

Avoid All guitar to iPad audio interfaces that connect using the iPad's 3.5mm TRRS Headset jack as a Guitar Input - you WILL suffer poor results, and white noise, due to the non bypass-able Apple iPad Microphone preamp.

Use a Guitar Audio Input interface that connects directly to the Lightning port works much better.

Then its a short list of guitar interfaces that provide true 24 bit audio into the ipad.

I would say these are the top runners

* Apogee Jam

* Peavey Ampkit Link HD

* IK Multimedia iRig Pro

* IK Multimedia iRig HD

* Line-6 SonicPort VX

For latest news on iPad/iPhone 24 bit recording


* Best 24 Bit IOS Audio Interface for Live Guitar


Just wanted to bump this thread so newbies can learn.

How to search the forum

How to Read the most recent Posts


Its a new year, and I will be in Anaheim California at Winter NAMM  next week. Send me a PM if you are also at NAMM show and want to meet up.

Also just a reminder to those who are taking the time to fill out the registration and become a member of VGuitarForums. I personally review all applications, and if you write jiberish as your reason for joining our forum, or fds543, or "none of your business" or "To Hack your Forum" - I will reject your application.  And I have a tool to check if your email has a track record of being a spambot.   

I currently reject 20% of those who attempt to join, and that helps maintain our focus here , with potentially less off topic SPAM


Many excellent tutorials here.




Here is a good discussion on Audio Cable for Guitar

and tools
OTC 4467 Automatic Wire Stripper,


This another good resource of info.



Some GR-55 users complain there is no Global Final Stage EQ, but forget to learn how to use the 5 separate Virtual Mic selections listed above, and learn basic concepts like on/ off axis mic positioning and its impact on tone.  This is  major tool box of EQ, seldom understood and worth getting to know and use when needed.

1) Find a Pink noise  / Audio Sweep generator app on your smartphone

2) Run Pink Noise into GR-55 / VG-99 by feeding a cable from from  Iphone headphone out into the GK3 Guitar Input, while adjusting GR55 Mic settings.

3) Use Visual Audio Spectrum Analyzer in your DAW app - and use the VG-99 / GR-55 Audio over USB (with Roland USB Audio Driver+ a USB cable) to see and hear and train your ears on the impact of all the VG-99 / GR-55 FX Controls have on the sound
hint: Depending on your prior Audio experience this could take weeks / years to comprehend)     

Read my Tips and Blog for the fast track on learning and knowledge.
Forget browsing the forums for hours  - instead ONLY read the posts by those here who have shared essential core knowledge, as all are explained here:
  Tips and Blog: https://www.vguitarforums.com/smf/index.php?topic=6125.0

Go to a used book Store and get a copy of this

"AudioCyclopedia" by Howard Tremaine


This was my Bible - I got my  1st copy at age 16

By the time I went to college I studied this (actually met the author John Backus who knew my professor)

Locate a Schematic


Audio links





Good articles on the state of USB Audio in 2013-2014


I suggest try to resist impulse buying and do more research before dropping $1K on any piece of gear.
a simple google search on "GR-55" shows VGuitarforums on the first page or two, and we have a rather realistic perspective on what the GR-55 can and can't do - as we are isolated from the hype machine of the manufacturer.

Regardless of the technology, be it a new camera, or new multitrack recorder or Guitar synth, I use a search tool, and search on
"(insert name of proposed gear + Forum", and "(insert name of proposed gear + Problem"
and  only buy gear that has a user forum I can read for a few days to compare notes and get ideas on how to use this tool, and understand its shortcomings, and see how well it suits your intended implementation in your rig. And never trust an unknown salesman at guitar center trying to make his sales quota that day


For inspiration I go here


QuoteVery few beginners will spend the time required to do the above and hence why a lot of people write the unit off  and sell it or take if back to the shop

Once again of you are expecting to plug in , download a satch tone and sound like satch this is NOT going to happen.

Last few days I dusted off my old Vox Tonelab SE  - and for live use, the ToneLab SE's InStant Patch changes (with no gaps) and great Tube amp emulation - and the #1 feature  - Real Knobs for all FX (!) these combine to work refreshingly well for my needs and tones.

and just feed its 3.5mm headphone out to the MP3 input on rear of my Roland CUBE-80XL - and that is very good sounding and simple to navigate / edit tones mid song at live gigs / rehearsal. I got it used for $250 a few years ago, but this is about as easy as it gets and has 90% of what I need.

Since it has 5pin MIDI I/O it can also serve as a MIDI foot controller for GR-55, Kemper, ipad  / BIAS rig too


If you want to obtain more incite and better explanations of how Roland gear works - review the OWNERS MANUALS for the earliest examples of current gear.

For example the GR-55 Owners Manual just lists the various FX functions and Control Features, but skips explanation and examples of how to use these.

Here is the 1999 Roland VG-88 Owners Manual  - ITS A MUST READ!  - it lays a better foundation with explanations of how the Internal Wave Pedal and Expression Pedal Min/Max FX range,Assign Hold, etc,  work.

Roland COSM Reference Library



This works - I lost my Android phone, as luck would have it I stumbled on this and found my phone



Between 1977 and 1986 I lived downtown LA,  - rented a Victorian house where I rehearsed  / recorded several bands.

One morning I was late to work because my neighbor Tom Waits had a film crew and cast of midgets doing take after take of filming the video below

To me this video below is like having an old home movie from 1981 Los Angeles, specifically the alley behind Union Ave near Beverly Blvd. and a glimpse of my back porch, and the old AT&T  / Pacific Bell parking lot full of old cars 


Well, the eggs chase the bacon round the fryin' pan
And the whinin' dog pidgeons by the steeple bell rope
And the dogs tipped the garbage pails over last night
And there's always construction work bothering you

In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood

Well, Friday's a funeral and Saturday's a bride
And Sey's got a pistol on the register side
And the goddam delivery trucks, they make too much noise
And we don't get our butter delivered no more

In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood

Well, Big Mambo's kickin' his old grey hound
And the kids can't get ice cream, cause the market burned down
And the newspaper sleeping bags blow down the lane
And that goddam flatbed's got me pinned in again

In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood

There's a couple Filipino girls gigglin' by the church
And the window is busted and the landlord ain't home
And Butch joined the army, yeah, that's where he's been
And the jackhammer's digging up the sidewalks again

In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood

In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood
In the neighborhood


I have been reviewing all alternatives for my Live Performance Control, and targeting products which offer the best complement of features and price for my needs.

After my excellent result with an old 2005 Digitech GNX-3000

I recently located a gently used Digitech GSP-1101 and Control 2 Foot Controller  - ($320 for the pair - which is about $500 savings over new)




I have loaded all the latest Firmware and this is working very well for me



(Read More about GSP-1101's ability to load third party Cab IR files here)

- Each Control 2 Foot Controller's Bank has 5 presets on the lower array of foot switches , with the Digitech exclusive feature of "Preset Bounceback" - where if you press the currently playing preset's footswitch again, it automatically returns you to the just prior last played preset - extremely valuable for live gig patch navigation.

The Top Row array of foot switches on the Control 2 can be Assigned to transmit unique MIDI CC# On/Off messages for controlling other gear.

And there's a jack for a 2nd Expression pedal, and separate foot switch's  dedicated to Tap Tempo and Tuner - so no Train wrecks at gigs as tends to happen with GR-55,

and the GSP-1101 DSP Amp Sims are not too bad, and it has an excellent Harmonist function, and Stereo FX Loop. This is where I employ a "4 cable method" approach using the GSP-1101 with my Kemper in the FX Loop of the GSP-1101 - and its working very well for me.

I should also point out the  GSP-1101 also works as an IOS 24 bit USB Class Compliant Audio / MIDI I/O Interface for my iPad - so I can record my Kemper at 24 bits. Very easy to wrap my brain around compared to other rigs i have tried.   

I still love my VG-99 and FC300 - but that combo is missing several features I prefer for live gigs. I actually prefer the pedal arrangement on the older Roland FC-200

  compared to the FC-300       

FWIW -the Digitech GSP-1101 with the "C63" Firmware and third party apps G-IR-Loader (GIRL) allows custom IRs to be used instead of the factory Speaker Cabs. Details here:


Digitech GSP1101 Beta C63
Friday, March 16, 2012| by Will Chen
For those who've followed FrugalGuitarist.com for a while, it should be no surprise that I'm a fan of Digitech gear. I've owned a piece of their gear for just about as long as I've been playing guitar as they are one of those companies which always offers a great balance of professional features at a relatively affordable price. As such, it was only a matter of time before I got my hands on their flagship processor the GSP1101. The GSP1101 was initially announced in 2007 and was quickly adopted by many professional players. However, Digitech continued to build new features on the AudioDNA2 platform which appeared in new lines of the company's RP processors. By the time the RP1000 had been announced at the end of 2008 the GSP1101's features already appeared rather dated by comparison. Stan Ripley and mustbebeta.com to the rescue! Though unofficial beta firmware updates, the GSP1101 has been updated to stay extremely relevant in a market which has grown increasingly competitive since 2007. The latest firmware as of this writing is C63, which may very well be the last as its been a year since its release. As the GSP1101 has been on the market for some time and reviewed thouroughly, I'm only going to focus on the beta C63 upgrades and whether the GSP1101 is worth the upgrade for owners of the current Digitech RP series. For opinions on general Digitech amp modeling and effects (the same algorhythms used in the RP series are in the GSP), be sure to check out my reviews of the RP255, RP350, and RP500. Before I get into the review, a few links. The latest GSP1101 beta update and release notes can be found here, the GSP Impulse Response Loader (G.I.R.L.) can be found here, and the official Digitech GSP1101 page here. Potential owners should really take a read of the beta release notes as all updates are covered.

While the GSP1101 C63 firmware offers numerous updates, perhaps the most intriguing new feature included is the ability to load third party Impulse Responses (IR). An IR is essentially the sonic signature of an environment, in the case of the GSP1101 a guitar cabinet. While this technology is fairly commonplace in DAW plugins, and is the backbone behind the vast majority of speaker cabinet emulation in multi-effects units, the GSP1101 is the only multi-effects device under $1,000 which allows loading of third party IRs. That said, the GSP1101 only supports mono impulses and additionally only loads the first 128 samples of the IR (the left channel in the case of a stereo IR) to both left and right channels, or alternatively the first 256 samples to the left channel (mono option). I must admit to being very skeptical that a truncated file could impart the realism typically associated with IRs. My first experiment was downloading the free Marshall 1960A Celestion G12M-25s cabinet pack available at redwirez.com. After some brief experimentation, it was obvious that a third party IR can indeed offer tonal advantages over many of the stock cabinet models in the GSP. I quickly got drunk on the experimenting which ate up many hours over the course of a few days...which I have extremely mixed feelings about. Yes, experimentation is often needed to wrangle the best tones from gear but I believe its also important to remember that putting tones under a microscopic level of scrutiny can be counterproductive and any guitarist (including myself) would be much better served by putting in some extra practice time than performing a similar experiment.

...if you dig the tones your getting from an RP unit, you'll love the tonal advantages the GSP has to offer
After getting past the IR experimentation, the GSP1101 beta updates offer some additional very cool functionality such as parallel effects processing, custom assigns when paired with the Control 2 footswitch, pre/post compressor placement, and many other goodies. All that is in addition to all the cool features the GSP1101 already offered such as disabling cab emulation on the 1/4" outs (so the XLR can still be sent direct), global cabinet modeling, and global EQ.

So is it worth the upgrade for an existing RP owner? Depends. If you're an RP1000 user who makes use of that unit's dual loops, you loose one with the GSP1101. Also, while the vast majority of amps/effects have been ported to the GSP1101, there's still a few missing (most notable the lofi and reverse delays). And despite all the GSP1101's strengths, the one nagging weakness is the unit's inability to run pitch and modulation effects simultaneously. This is a feature offered by the older GNX series as well as the newer iPB series and a frustration many current RP owners are likely familiar with. Now, if those features aren't that important and your not one intimately in love with the floorboard format, the GSP1101 offers a pretty big advantage when going direct into a full range system. That said, an IR is not a silver bullet which will completely transform the GSP tones. If you generally don't like the Digitech tonal signature, loading an IR likely won't change that...but if you dig the tones your getting from an RP unit, you'll love the tonal advantages the GSP has to offer. And then there's all the little things like the GSP's excellent strobe style tuner, global EQ, and excellent controller integration. All in all, unless your a player who absolutely must have a specific feature in an RP unit not offered in the GSP1101, its well worth the price premium especially considering the fantastic deals to be had on the unit due to the length of time its been on the market.

Price: ~$400 to ~500 USD (GSP alone) or ~$600 to ~800 (Control 2 Bundle)
Pros: Great Tones, Impulse Response Loading
Cons: Only one Modulation/Pitch effect available at a time




Kemper Dark LCD Stompbox Editing Fix



Ive been in Brea, California at Underwriters Laboratories learning the new IEC 62368-1 Compliance standards for A/V gear as I'm also the Compliance Engineer for my company that sells Cinema A/V products around the globe.

After the session Friday late afternoon I had an hour to kill so I walk into the local Brea Guitar Center. Seems there is a corporate floor plan because if you travel a lot and visit guitar centers, its tough to remember what town you are in  - since the "wall of pain" , er I mean the wall of poorly setup new guitars is full of the typical examples of corporate ordering departments  - very  typical array of Epiphones, Ibanez, Fender, and off brands . 
Upon Arrival I was met by the Guitar Floor manager and I told him I was from central california coast and make it into a guitar center twice a year, so I want to look around a bit, and also told him I ran VGuitarforums where we discuss Guitar modeling and MIDI guitar - His eyes just turned into the long stare, as it was obvious he did not know what I was talking about, nor cared. I also told him I played in a surf band, and then he came back to life and said - then you will want to check out the Fender Tele Baja model on the wall 

(which since this has no Vibrato holds no interest for me)

Roaming the floor I saw the Kustom PA50 That Marc Benigni recommends on sale but for $99, not the advertised $79

and I played an Akai Max49
Terrible keys that feel like hard springs - must be designed by a family of  carpel tunnel surgeons trying to drum up new future business.

But endless noise of the typical bad guitarists demoing floor model Amp playing poorly executed "cliffs of dover" over and over ( I may one day do a Tommy James cover with those lyrics)
Lots of Acoustic Brand  amps ( which since resurrection a few years ago I understand Guitar Center is part owner  - so its a "house brand" these days.
Nothing grabbed my attention, I noticed they had one Variax JTV-69 - but it was hung 15 feet up on the side of an opposite wall, high above the acoustic guitar room,   They place all the ipAd IOS Guitar stuff over on a rack in the keyboard department, and there was a Roland  / Boss Demo station - but located over in the Music Book area, with the GR-55 and demo ESP guitar with 13 pin well hidden from view - you would never even see this unit unless you walked over to the Song Book area, and turn 180 degrees.

As I said, I value our community and wish it would grow, but know we are not the general public with "monkey see, monkey do"

It won't be until Mylie Cyress does the twerk dance (?) holding a Boss GP-10, before anyone will care about this product or take notice.

Face it, 99.9% of guitarists and Guitar salesmen today think our site is not worth their time.   

Which only reminds me of an old interview of Jeff Beck in 1999 discussing his new Snarling Dogs Wah Wah - when He explained the feature that he admired most, he contacted the factory  - he was told that was a bug only on the first production run, most of the later production models of that specific Snarling Dogs Wah Wah don't work like that Jeff"  - to which he replied:

"This is Great news - because then I'll be the only guitarist on earth with this sound

Use that an example to create your own voice using tools that work for YOU.

I'll add reading others reviews and words regarding the
Boss GP-10 Owner Experience, is akin to (as Zappa said)  "Dancing About Architecture"


No forum post, photos, spoken words, MP3 audio recordings, or Youtube videos can effectively communicate or act as a substitute for real hands on experience and actual one on one "play time" with any piece of music gear - including the Boss GP-10.

While the Boss GP-10 is just another tool, I've determined its exactly the right tool for my specific needs. 

I'll leave it to a guitar center salesman to convince you to use "Gear A" over "Gear B".

I'm just reporting what gear I'm currently focused on using for my specific needs and requirements , and how I'm accomplishing those goals. 




Its all boils down to playing technique.
My right hand always rests on the bridge of my guitars bulk of the time - for string control and muting.  I own a few Floyd Rose guitars with full floating bridge, but some are far more touchy compared to others.
For example, 7 months ago thru Thomas Nordegg, I had the opportunity to actually play one of Steve Vai's Ibanez Jem guitars, and while this might have been someone else's idea of a great guitar experience dream  -  in my case I found Vai's iBanez JEM  horribly impossible to play "in tune" with my technique,  as anytime I plucked any string on this guitar with full floating bridge, I had the classic "self oscillating diving board "Boing! sound" (similar to the Warner Bros Cartoon "Road Runner  / Wylie Coyote" sound. And for me it was very tough to play, as most of the time  all notes sounded 1/4 tone sharp, because my right hand palm muting the bridge always forced the bridge to "tilt" sharp.    Very unpleasant experience for me , and reminded me everybody has a unique playing technique and guitar setup.     
Myself - I'm moving towards Bigsby or Jazzmaster type tremolos - these provide a stable bridge for palm muting, but also allow the up / down chord shimmers
Maybe I'm nuts but I'm considering installing a bigsby on my xtSA and add rubber mutes for the length of string between the Bridge and the Bigsby

Ive even considered getting a used Godin LGX, and swapping out the RMC guts from my 2012  xtSA, and add a Bigsby.

I recently won an ebay auction for a recent 2013 Godin LGX-SA, and I intend to install a Bigsby type tremolo

Similar to my JTV-59


Here is my -2013 Godin LGX-SA with GFS Xtrem

and my current favorite "Acoustic" guitar -

a highly modified Oscar Schmidt / Washburn OR6CE Resophonic with 21 fret Neck

added Piezo biscuit saddle  / Condensor mic preamp / XLR out


GFS Xtrem

and the major important mod -  I swapped out the Chinese thick "hubcap" Reso-cone for a a genuine National Resophonic 9.5" Hand spun aluminum Cone  - and now the guitar sounds and plays better than a genuine National with 


The "PostMod" Music scene explained

The Catch 22 of Rock and Roll – or why it can't get better
August 20, 2014
Rock has got itself into a Catch 22 that guarantees the music will get worse.

Here's how it works. Because no one dare attack the rock band format, we are stuck with it, and within that generic structure just about all music is done in the electric guitars, bass and drums format, and just about all the music has been done, and been done better about 60 years ago.

There will not be another golden age of bands to match what we had in the 60's, and there will not be a golden age of pioneers in rock and roll like we had in the 50's. The formula is too restrictive now, the times have changed, the music has cloned itself out of business – so the innovation and rebellion and vitality that began it all, is no longer allowed.

The only way to break the cycle is to oppose what rock and roll has become, just like the great early rock and roll opposed big band music that had lost it's vitality.

Postmod Music- its 3 things, a revolution against what rock/rap/country/pop have become, its back to early rock and roll's simple honesty, directness, and passion with an emphasis on melody and great SONGS, and it's a music that includes all types of music from every place in the world.
(and It's part of the overall art and media revolution).

Music media, if you won't talk about the backlash against all this, we need a new media that is open enough to cover all the music news.




Here is my 2013 Godin LGX-SA with black GFS Xtrem - I Love it!

I have a 2012 re-issue Epiphone Wilshire that had a  doggy factory tremolo, as delivered stock there was not enough downward pressure at the bridge saddles for the upper strings = thin sound and strings falling off the T.O.M Bridge saddles during chord strumming.

No more ! - now this guitar sings like a Les Paul after swapping out the old factory tremolo for an X-Trem.


SouthPark lampoon of DAWs and modern music creation
(full episode here:)


Its actually more funny to read the YouTube comments from so called "producers"



My all time favorite gear for live performance

Lasko Pro Performance Blower Fan, 4900

Keeps me cool and sweat free at front of the stage when I play 3 hour shows
Dual AC Power outlets are a nice help too when stage power for pedal boards is scarce. 


Perfect tagalong fan for cooling off at any job
High-velocity motor provides powerful air circulation
2 120-volt accessory outlets with safety circuit breaker and 10-foot power cord with grounded plug
Pivoting blower head for adjusting airflow angle
1-year limited warranty, ETL listed