Welcome to Spooky Month, A.K.A. October! We're excited to be back with a new installment of This Week in Neuro, the one place to chat presets, sound creation, pedals, and tons of other neat stuff. This week, we're taking another two-week chunk for that sweet, sweet data. I also have another Lunchtime Banter segment for y'all (or, depending on where you're from, youse, you guys, you lot, everybody) today.
We've got a spot of housekeeping to take care of as well; skip to the last paragraph of this entry to read about our saga with Neuro and Windows 7 and why we suddenly can't fully support Neuro on that platform anymore.
Well folks, will you look at that! We have a new winner this week! Just kidding, the C4 takes the top spot once again. Perhaps that sounded tired, but I really don't mean it that way; it is truly special to watch this pedal get so much love and to be so clearly inspiring so many creators and players. Our president, Roger, has mentioned what a huge risk it was for us to have done a pedal like the C4; something so complicated, yet such a powerful sound-creation tool. He claims he himself was at one time one of the pedal's biggest naysayers, but he's ever so charmed to be proven wrong by our wonderful world of creators every week.
This week, the L.A. Lady takes a commanding second place on the charts. We've remarked in the past about how we feel this is a pedal that's a bit misunderstood, but with these numbers we might have to start rethinking the "mis-" part of the word! The L.A. Lady seems to be inspiring a few users to go on a preset-creation fervor, something we strive for in pretty much every piece of gear. Thanks, L.A. Lady players, for your contagious enthusiasm.
As promised, this workweek delivered on a new Lunchtime Banter segment. Today's Lunchtime Banter focused on food-related band names. Flipping through my saved tracks on Spotify, I couldn't believe how few bands had names that were foods or related to food. Some highlights:
-Bread was discussed. It was agreed upon that, for those who had never heard of Bread, that they fell into the category of "70s Easy Listening" music. Bread, I'd like you to know that I tried to fight for you and explain that there was more to you than that, like a bit of psychedelia and a whole lotta groove.
-Cream was mentioned, and instigated a polarizing reaction about how "good" they were. No debate about whether or not the name was food-related, though.
-Spoon was briefly discussed. Not that we believe spoons are food, but they are definitely an impetus for food, particularly soup. So... is Spoon a food-related band name? Most of us gave them a pass.
-Lettuce and Phish were discussed. Source Audio has a handful of very passionate jam (no pun intended) fans.
-The Cranberries and Strawberry Alarm Clock are a couple of noteworthy fruit-related band names.
-The Lemonheads were thrown in right at the end of lunch. Probably my favorite group of the aforementioned.
I'm sure we missed some obvious ones. Possibly even your favorite example. Let us know in the comments! Now, onto the Featured Presets of the week.
"snappy OD" - Ultrawave - @bwondrak
The Ultrawave can do SO many different sounds—Multiband distortion, foldback, octave fuzz, multi-tremolo, compression, etc, etc. The list goes on and on for so long that the greatest, simplest tones can be easily overlooked. You might look at the Ultrawave and not think it can do a more "traditional" sounding overdrive or distortion. Thanks to @bwondrak, you no longer have to wonder about these things.
"Higher Love" - C4 Synth - @hoodystardust
One of the best parts of the job is discovering new music. Admittedly, this tune is not something I was familiar with prior to writing this installment, but after a listen and a half I was 100% in. As if I needed more 80s dance anthems to listen to. Just kidding, please send them all my way.
Using his C4 Synth, @hoodystardust combined a monophonic octave up voice with a Saw wave voice, all running through a 4-pole low-pass filter to create this punchy, classic synth-bass tone.
"Fat Tube - Drop D ready" - Aftershock - @jcostaasc
Why? Because Soundgarden, that's why. This "Fat Tube - Drop D ready" preset certainly lives up to its name. It's a tight enough bass overdrive to still sound clear in punchy in a grungy drop tuning. Usually, using a drop tuning such as Drop D or lower can result in unwanted "flubby-ness" caused by the overdrive circuit being unable to properly handle the lower frequencies because they are tuned to accentuate the midrange. That's why we created the Aftershock Bass Distortion, and it's exactly what @jcostaasc's "Outshined"-inspired preset excels at.
"1962 Keeley MOD" - Kingmaker - @mirkoebasta
Brightness and overdrive can be a tricky combination. Obviously, a bright overdriven tone is a great way to get your guitar to stand out and slice through the mix. Though typically, a drawback of making your guitar sound really bright is that you risk it sounding overly thin, harsh, or "brittle". @mirkoebasta has found a way, using the Kingmaker, to get that really bright tone without sacrificing fullness. Based on the pedal name-drop in the title, we think they're going for a classic Bluesbreaker-style overdrive tone.
"Resonant Analog/ U2 'Pride'" - Nemesis - @michaelgee
Ahh, the good ol' days, when The Edge only used one or two delay pedals. I'm guessing (again, this is just an educated guess here) that this preset was made in the name of love.
Okay, okay, I've seen myself out, now it's time to talk about the preset. @michaelgee is using the Nemesis's "Resonant Analog" engine (this is one of the backpage engines that you NEED Neuro to use) and a fairly low amount of feedback to achieve his tone for this U2 track. He's also using the 2/3 ratio feature for Tap 2 to simulate a dual galloping delay. Btw, The Unforgettable Fire is one of their most underrated albums, in my opinion. Check it out!
Just a bit of housekeeping before we go...
What happened with Windows 7?!
I thought I might share a quick update about our situation with the Windows 7 operating system. As some of you may know or have found out, our Neuro users have encountered a bit of trouble with Windows 7 over the past couple of months. Users noted that after days, weeks, months or years of consistent Neuro support on Windows 7, the application suddenly stopped working on their operating system and would crash immediately upon opening the desktop editor.
About a week after this started occurring, we uncovered that Windows deployed an involuntary security patch to their Windows 7 operating system users that appears to be the root cause of the glitch; whenever the Neuro Desktop software attempts to connect to its online Cloud, the Windows 7 security update deems it a security threat and forces it to close.
Unfortunately, it doesn't appear as though Windows has helped us out on their Windows 7 x Neuro Desktop support issue. Our software team has poured a lot of time and resources into this but it doesn't seem like something we can spend any more time on, and it's starting to look more like an issue on their end that we really cannot address.
Currently, Neuro Desktop WILL run on Win7, but it will have to be in offline mode. The reason for this, as stated above, is that once Neuro attempts to access its Cloud, Windows 7 considers it a threat and closes the application. So the editor still works if you're not using internet while using it. This makes searching for Community presets a pain, but not impossible. The workaround is below:
To view and download presets, you can go to neuro.sourceuaudio.net which is the link for the live preset feed.
To download a preset from the Neuro feed,
-click the downward arrow in the bottom right corner of each preset, then save it to an accessible location on your computer.
To put that preset onto your pedal, you'll have to make sure your pedal connected to the Neuro Desktop.
-Click on the wrench icon in the left margin, then select an empty preset slot in the right margin.
-Then, hit "Import", and select the file you downloaded from the website. This can all be done offline and without a Neuro account.
-Finally, hit "Save As" and name the preset whatever you'd like. You may skip this step, but the preset will not be saved once you click away from it or power cycle the pedal.
We apologize for the inconvenience! We try our hardest to reach and support as many users as we can. Unfortunately, at this time there's not much more we can do about the Windows 7 support with our current bandwidth aside from offering workarounds.
The Neuro Desktop Editor is currently compatible with Windows 10 & up, as well as with Mac OS 10.10 & up and can be found under the "Editors & Firmware" tab. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and thanks for reading This Week in Neuro!