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Refund or Replace -- can Feature Packs help decision?


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#1 LostShepherd

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 08:18 PM

Hi,

I got the AT-200 this week but am having to send my current one back under warranty due to several issues e.g. bad grounding wire \ pickup toggle switch flipping of its own accord \ software or circuitry randomly squealing at me! I took videos of all this stuff if anyone is really interested.

Anyhows I am not so down on the guitar, the autotune worked brilliant when ran at the nut, everything was perfect according to my floor tuner and I also quite liked the neck on the guitar, even though there was a hairline crack in it when received. The Candy red is also really nice.

I wanted to get some info on here before I decide whether to get a refund or a replacement, the queries I have are ~
  • The autotune pickup tone;
    • The stock autotune pickup sound just doesn't work for me, is the stock pickup before packs are added the Modern humbucker?
      I wanted to check if the sound changes significantly (and for the better) with the Feature Packs? if I though I could I would be more inclined to go for a replacements guitar rather than a refund.
  • The chorus effect when guitar slightly out of tune and playing at room volume with amp;
    • I can live with this and simply play without autotune when at low volume or even better tune it precisely to eliminate the chorusing, not really an issue.
  • Custom tunings were hit and miss depending on finger pressure;
    • Will the software packs make selecting custom tunings more accurate? I think you simply play a certain string and fret to select a tuning is that right?
As I say I am undecided which way to go as I am afraid I could get another dud if I get a replacement, but I am really keen on the accuracy of the autotuning and generally liked the guitar, I think its a lot of bang for your buck at the current price.

Other musings I have are that there are the hidden costs with this guitar i.e. midi interface £25 / Y midi cable £10 / Feature pack £60 - £150, if the feature packs corrected the issues I'd be happy to spend that and still consider it a good deal for what you get. Initially I'd be opting for the Essential Pack.

Anyhows, not bashing the guitar or software just hoping I can get some feedback from other players.

Peace out,
LS

#2 bizjer

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 09:43 PM

Hi!
The stock pickups are pretty much what you get from the Les Paul (Humbucker model) I first got the essential pack then upgraded to the pro pack. I can honestly say its worth the extra. For tones with little gain you really get the different feel of the modeling. The strat and Tele are really good. The twelve string model is very convincing. So much so that when I play with it on I tend to play the guitar like a twelve string. Its quite scary actually! Overall the sounds/tones you get with the extra software are A)cheaper than buying all the alternatives and B) great in their own right. The chorus effect you get playing at room volume is something that you have to live with I think. I tend to use headphones from my fx unit thus eliminating that side effect. once you have your amp cranked up over the threshold of hearing the guitars tones over the amped tone its not noticeable at all. Custom turnings are better with the packs imho. If you have a factory stock guitar and know how to set up the guitar properly it helps and fingering the alt turnings is slightly more accurate after a good setup. Using fret control via the packs makes this easier to access on the fly. Adding an external midi controller to auto switch your turnings etc makes it unbelievably useful. I've just acquired a Softstep controller, program in all the settings and you have a powerful live tool at your disposal.

The hidden costs you mention arte there but for an At200 in europe/uk now its about £190.00. If ytou buy the At200B you can add £50.00 but you will do that in batteries within weeks if you play the guitar a lot. trust me on that. I have a small mountain of zinc/carbon to prove it. Antares could have made the upgrading system better but if you have the right midi interface then just buying the Y cable from a supplier at approx £15.00 is affordable and necessary.

There are sometimes issues with the auto-tune settings in terms of it being actually tuned to E. When I got mine it was in tune but somehow managed to go out. This can be easily remedied by sending the appropriate midi command to the guitar. Again using a midi controller you can set up a "default" key which ensures the guitar is bang in tune all the time.

Given some of the issues you've had, and you're not alone in them I understand you may wish to give up but my advice is to get a replacement and get the essential pack or if you can the pro pack. You wont regret sticking with it.

And no I don't work for Antares or Peavey :-)

#3 Henrik

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 07:23 PM

 LostShepherd, on 06 March 2014 - 08:18 PM, said:

  • The autotune pickup tone;
    • The stock autotune pickup sound just doesn't work for me, is the stock pickup before packs are added the Modern humbucker?
      I wanted to check if the sound changes significantly (and for the better) with the Feature Packs? if I though I could I would be more inclined to go for a replacements guitar rather than a refund.
  • The chorus effect when guitar slightly out of tune and playing at room volume with amp;
    • I can live with this and simply play without autotune when at low volume or even better tune it precisely to eliminate the chorusing, not really an issue.
  • Custom tunings were hit and miss depending on finger pressure;
    • Will the software packs make selecting custom tunings more accurate? I think you simply play a certain string and fret to select a tuning is that right?

Yes, the stock sound of the software on the Peavey AT-200 is the Modern Humbucker in the Software Feature Packs.   As you may know, there are more pickup models in the Software Feature Packs that hopefully is more to your liking.

The chorus effect that you mention should only be present when playing with a lowish amp volume so that the acoustic sound is heard.  Do realize that even when the guitar is physically as in tune as a guitar will allow, this is still an issue.

The Software Feature Packs will be accurate on the tunings that are available in each pack.  When doing a "manual" custom tuning, if the finger pressure is not spot on, the ATG technology will compensate for this and therefore might produce an out of tune string.  For example, if you finger the note very hard the ATG system will take this into consideration and the note will come out flat.   The available tunings in each pack will not do this.

 bizjer, on 06 March 2014 - 09:43 PM, said:

And no I don't work for Antares or Peavey :-)

And yes, I do work for Antares...

#4 DAMossimo

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 10:27 PM

 LostShepherd, on 06 March 2014 - 08:18 PM, said:

  • The autotune pickup tone;
    • The stock autotune pickup sound just doesn't work for me, is the stock pickup before packs are added the Modern humbucker?
      I wanted to check if the sound changes significantly (and for the better) with the Feature Packs? if I though I could I would be more inclined to go for a replacements guitar rather than a refund.

If your AT-200 has older firmware on it (mine did), the pickups in active-mode are awful (sound like the guitar is under water). The free update to the v2.27 firmware fixes that so the pickups sound more or less the same when switching from passive to active mode. To get the update however, you will have to invest in the breakout box or y-cable with a usb-midi adapter.

As far as the feature packs, I'm still trying to evaluate their worth myself. If they went on sale again for 1/2 price it might just coax me to try them out, but at the current price-point, I'm waiting to see what others who have taken the plunge have to say.

#5 LostShepherd

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 08:24 AM

Cheers for all the feedback everyone, its much appreciated.

I really love the idea of the autotune and it was really accurate so I am very torn.  If the newer software makes the pickups sound the same in Active \ Passive mode that is a big help, I can only assume I had the older software version as they did sound sort of like they were being played through a phone box \ underwater when autotune was engaged.

I agree about the Feature Packs too if they were on sale, it would swing it for me and I'd just go for it.

Still don't know what to do!

#6 BobF

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 04:36 PM

Hey, Henrik - see if you can start the process of getting a group buy going.  Start the top pack at $150 and go down from there based on how many sign up :)

From reading this forum, it seems you could have quite a few "sales people" here working for you!
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#7 leads

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 02:32 AM

 BobF, on 08 March 2014 - 04:36 PM, said:

Hey, Henrik - see if you can start the process of getting a group buy going.  Start the top pack at $150 and go down from there based on how many sign up :)

From reading this forum, it seems you could have quite a few "sales people" here working for you!
that's a great idea of having a group buy... :)

#8 LostShepherd

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 03:04 PM

Just to finish out the story, I did end up sending the AT200 back for a refund. I ended up getting a getting a great deal on a GIbson Les Paul Traditional Pro II, super value and a lot of bang for my buck so I couldn't say no to it.

I'll be keeping an eye on this speace though and if a better quality model of guitar comes out with this technology I would still be interested.




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