My guitar multi fx processor -zoom g3xn
My amp model -blackstar I'd core 40
My amp settings always tempers the tone of my processor patches..what would be my amp settings to be able to get the real tone of the processor?

3 Answers 3


Guitar amps aren't really meant to let the sound of a pedal through un-modulated. You'll find that many standard stomp boxes will sound just awful that way.

All guitar amps strip a great deal of the top out of the unprocessed signal. Stomp-boxes don't need to do this tone-shaping [& I've heard tell the amp works better if the tone isn't pre-shaped] so a stomp box on its own is often far too bright & fizzy sounding.

You'd need something more akin to a microphone preamp to hear what the Zoom sounds like on its own, or just simple a line input, depending on send levels.

See Why does plugging headphones directly into guitar effect sound "bad"?

  • 1
    Another option for the short term is to disable speaker/cabinet simulation on the processor so at least the amp is not double filtering it. Oct 11, 2022 at 18:11
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    I’m not sure I see what that has to do with my comment. I was aware it’s a combo. Right now one thing that probably sounds bad is the processor probably has speaker simulation active and the amp of course has a real speaker. In my experience that’s always been a terrible combination. Replacing the amp is the best option, but if it’s not feasible at this time, at least disabling the speaker simulation in the processor and letting the amp add the power amp and speaker characteristics to the sound is better than having two “speakers" in series in the signal chain. Oct 11, 2022 at 18:41
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    Sweetwater has specs: sweetwater.com/store/detail/… Looks like using the line in on the Blackstar instead of the guitar input would also help. Oct 11, 2022 at 18:45
  • Would a keyboard amp be more suitable than a guitar amp here? Keyboard amps are generally intended to reproduce the input sound accurately, without colouring it — or at least, less than guitar amps, for which colouring the sound is a desirable property.
    – gidds
    Oct 11, 2022 at 22:49
  • @ToddWilcox - D'oh! t'other bit. Thought you meant the amp, sorry.
    – Tetsujin
    Oct 12, 2022 at 7:04

If you don't want your amp to affect the tone of your guitar you need to stop using a guitar amp, and instead use a proper PA system, which is designed to add as little colour to the signal as possible.

When playing live, I use either a Line6 or Kemper processor, with amp simulation, and feed it directly to the house PA, along with a feed for my monitor. This way I control the entire tone (barring mixing desk EQ tweaks).

For venues with no DI, I need to disable the amp sim and then run the sound through a Marshall cab in the classic way, mic it up and then send that to the desk - but for that setup I rely on the tone shaping the amp does, and that of the mic placement.

  • Of bring an active PA speaker / monitor / keyboard-amp. Oct 12, 2022 at 12:51

Many guitarist find it desirable for the amp to color the tone. So maybe you will not be able to get the amp totally neutral. The trick is to simply bypass the whole preamp and effects section and only use the power amp, which usually can be done my going into the line input.

The effects processor will most likely output a low impedance signal anyway, so you can simply plug the signal into the line input of the amp, if it has any.

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