Going virtual - recommendations, advice, warnings sought.


Senior member
Hey, gang --

So I'm contemplating finally going over to the modeling universe, and jettisoning the amp and cab rig I'm using now.  I am not terribly overstocked on cash to drop on this endeavor, so I'd welcome insights on gear that provides genuine value.  At the low end I see used POD XT Live type floor units, used Eleven rigs, and so on; but I think I might prefer greater integration with my 2022 iPad than older tools are likely to provide. 

As far as amplification goes, I know there are hordes of powered 12" monitors out there, so I'd just need one that's likely to be reasonably good sounding and reasonably priced.  This Carvin unit or something analogous will likely do.

Let's say I'd like to keep the whole thing under $1000USD.

Anyway:  I Welcome Your Views.

In related news, if anyone's interested in a lightly used Carvin V3M head with footswitch, let's talk.

Yr. Humble Svt., &c.,

I have an M-audio blackbox reloaded that is seriously obsolete but fun to mess about with. I almost never use it. It can serve as a recording interface or blast through my Carvin powered speaker at crazy volumes if wanted. Some of the big dogs here with Fractals or Kempers will know way more than I do. I am sure sound quality has progressed way, way, beyond my "system"  :laughing7: Some of it is spendy and you will be forever chasing your tail as upgrades are constant. Also, you will have to invest time and "learn" each products manual, interface, knobs, dual use knobs etc. hold down one and scroll etc. That drives me batty. Foe example, I believe to access some parameters in the Fractal unit the manual describes holding down one button, while spinning another, and clicking your heels quickly together three times to get to the right block. :icon_biggrin:

In the end it is up to your ears and patience level.
Well the question is:
Is this for recording only?
Is for playing at home?
Is this for performance?

I have zero recommendations in your price range.  Closest I could say is get a used Helix and a powered 12” monitor.

As far as Fractal, as a user for over a decade, I can assure you that none of the stuff previously mentioned in this thread are remotely correct.  It’s a very straight forward design and easy to use.  I get better Mesa tones out of it than I do my Mesa MK V LOL.

For live performance, it’s a God send!
In fact it’s easier to program than a TimeLine or a TimeFactor.  Where I play live at now, the other guitarists clamor to try it. 
TBurst Std said:
In fact it’s easier to program than a TimeLine or a TimeFactor.  Where I play live at now, the other guitarists clamor to try it.

A lot of pro's are using them, and it probably is the way of the future. I think the sound quality is there too. so there is that!  :icon_thumright:
Also FW upgrades are totally optional.  I haven’t upgraded the FW in my unit for probably 2+ years.

Some day I may.  Once different tempos can be programmed by scene rather than patch, I’ll jump.

That’s the thing that gets the musicians where I play now. My delays, etc are always spot on for every song at the start. No tap tempo stomping that gets you close (and that doesn’t help when you open the song ).

I pre program each songs tempo before playing.  Takes all of 3-5 seconds for each song in the set list.