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 Forum index » Instruments and Equipment » Strings and things
Gibson FireBird X
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BobTheDog



Joined: Feb 28, 2005
Posts: 3841
Location: England
Audio files: 32
G2 patch files: 15

PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 3:45 am    Post subject: Gibson FireBird X
Subject description: The most hated guitar in the world :)
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Well after having it a while I have decided I quite like it.

The build and finish quality of my current one is pretty good, the first one I had was shit so it looks like there may be quite a variation between guitars.

All the switches and knobs feel pretty good, no noise from any of them.

I have not been able to get it set up as low as I want, I put some relief in the neck but if you put the strings too low you get rattles on the low strings when playing above the 12th fret. The two I have had both came with an extremely high action, I have also seen one in a shop with a very high action.

It looks better in real life than in pictures on the internet!

The pickups are very nice, they are pretty bright which I like.

The neck takes a bit of getting used to but now I must admit I quite like it now.

Mine has a hiss like the Dusk Tiger (DT) has, Gibson say it shouldn't but I have heard the hiss on their videos of the FBX.

The amount of sculpting you can do with changing the PU setups and the EQ is amazing.

I never though I would use the FX but actually I have been, they are all fairly basic but get the job done. The distortion is pants though. What is very useful is to be able to go into edit mode on the guitar and set the FX up from the sliders, this is actually really easy. Being able to set the dry/wet mix is also pretty good, so you can just add a hint of effect. Very nice.

Tuning is quicker than my DT and about as accurate.

The intonation helper thingy is totally useless, just like on the Dusk Tiger.

The new way of using the digital knob to select a bank and then using the pickup selector to select the patch is excellent.

The new GNode is as crap as the DT one, also now you loose the 13 pin output. There is a midi connection on there which is not used so maybe they will put a pitch to midi converter in somewhere.

Battery life is much lower than the DT, it seems to range from an hour to a few hours.


The pedals are well built and pretty useful, the actually pedal has very little movement so is not too good. The wah is awfull!

The displays are fantastic and provide loads of info about what is going on, especially useful when editing via the guitar controls.

You can use the pedal only for:

1. Volume - works ok
2. Wah - crap
3. Octaver - not great
4. Rotary speaker - okish

I would have liked the ability to be able to change other things, that list is pretty limited.

The switches are very useful, you can:

1. Select a bank
2. Select a patch
3. Change pickups
4. Select tuning
5. Turn FX on and off
6. use the looper

number 3. Change pickups allows you to change the 5 default set of pickup setups, you can also do this from the guitar. These setups are unfortunately fixed so you get:

1. Neck HB
2. Neck Single middle single
3. middle HB
4. bridge single middle single
5. bridge HB

I think they really missed out on not having these to be configured per patch.

What they also messed up is not being able to set the volume or eq on each mag pickup, this is a major omission I think.

Each pickup can be set to one of the following;

1. Series in phase
2. Series out of phase
3. Parallel in phase
4. Parallel out of phase
5. Single coil (bridge side)
6. Single coil (neck side)
7. Reverse Polarity: Series in phase
8. Reverse Polarity: Series out of phase
9. Reverse Polarity: Parallel in phase
10. Reverse Polarity: Parallel out of phase
11. Reverse Polarity: Single coil (bridge side)
12. Reverse Polarity: Single coil (neck side)


You have a 9 band para eq on the mag mix and a 9 band eq on the piezo.

You can then blend the mag and piezo.

The signal is then passed through a 'pre filter' which has the following settings:

1. Flat acts like a traditional highpass filter, and affects only signals below the cutoff frequency.
2. Low Bump adds a subtle bass boost at the cutoff frequency.
3. Vintage 1 reduces high frequencies slightly by a fixed amount.
4. Vintage 2 further reduces high frequencies compared to Vintage 1.
5. Vintage 3 further reduces high frequencies compared to Vintage 2.

Then the signal is passed to the 'Tube Effects" which are:

1. Noise Gate
2. Compressor
3. Distortion

Then into a 6 band para eq.

Then into a two band octaver.

Then into the wah.

Then into the 'Tape effects" which are:

1. Chorus
2. Phaser
3. Tremolo
4. Delay 1
5. Delay 2
6. Reverb

Then into a 32 band eq.




So what could be better:

1. Volume and EQ on each mag pickup.
2. Allowing 5 sets of pickup setups per patch.
3. Pedal controlling any parameter you like, set in the patch.
4. Lower noise
5. Being able to use it without power like the DT.


Any questions please ask.

Cheers

Andy
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Mongo1



Joined: Aug 11, 2011
Posts: 411
Location: Raleigh NC

PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Hi Andy - that's a very informative review - thanks.

One question - Has Gibson started a 12-step program for people who buy these things? Razz

Gary
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DrJustice



Joined: Sep 13, 2004
Posts: 2039
Location: Morokulien
Audio files: 3

PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Thank you for the report, Andy Smile

Sounds like it could be fun to play with, despite having some shortcomings within the concept, like not storing pickup selection per patch. Are those 12 configurations per pickup stored?

It's a bummer that the action is off. And you're on the second one already... In Theory it should be possible to get super low action with a plekked neck. I've had Gibson pay for unlimited work done locally on one of my guitars due to similar (and other) quality problems - PM is you want the details on how to go about it.

DJ
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BobTheDog



Joined: Feb 28, 2005
Posts: 3841
Location: England
Audio files: 32
G2 patch files: 15

PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

You can store one pickup selection per patch so one of the 12 for each pickup is stored. This is then your default pickup setup.

The guitar then offers another mode, you push the grey switch up and then the pickup switch chooses pickups (form the stock set of 5) rather than choosing patches.

I have the height at about 3 mm on the 23rd fret, thats as low as I can get it, maybe I am expecting too much?

Can you PM the details of how to go about it with Gibson.
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DrJustice



Joined: Sep 13, 2004
Posts: 2039
Location: Morokulien
Audio files: 3

PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

My 27" scale Buckethead Signature has an action of approximately:
1st string: 1.6mm at the 23rd fret
6th string: 2.0mm at the 23rd fret
The is no buzzing, and I could probably set it a couple of tenths lower.

A 24.75" scale guitar should be able to go even lower.

Check your PM inbox.

DJ
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