Thread title is pretty specific! I'm looking for a more transparent 4-cable-method effects box to throw in my amp's chain now that I've modded my recto's loop. Based on some of James' comments and videos, I'm probably going to wind up pulling the trigger soon on the G-System, but had a few questions about it.
I love the idea of throwing a couple of my favorite overdrives or compressors in the rack and having them switchable, and going with a real OD instead of a simulated one is just fantastic. My biggest question I can't seem to find an answer for, is can I select a different preamp or defeat my amp's preamp in the routing? Right now with the HD500, I have a couple of presets where I simply do not include the FX loop block at all, and it runs the full HD500 string into the return of my amp, defeating the amp's preamp. This allows me to run super-compressed solid-state clean sounds through the red channel's modern voicing with no distortion, and gets some unique sounds. If I can defeat the amp's preamp, I could technically run my AMT P2 in an assignable loop and be able to switch preamps on the fly, which would be frickin' amazing from a versatility standpoint, basically giving me a rackmounted 5150 along with my recto.
The GSP1101 on the other hand, seems like a more transparent version of what I have already. That's fine, but I would want to use it's onboard drives in front of the amp, and I don't see too many demos online of what they sound like. The ones in the HD500 are outstanding, and I can easily replicate a BB Preamp or Tubescreamer with it, and I'd like to know if the GSP1101 has that quality of drive in it.
I know we've chatted via Facebook, but in case anyone else is reading this, I'll answer it here too.
There's 5 loops on the G System for pedals/preamps, all of which can be turned on or off independently in any patch. By default only loops 1-3 have an assigned button on the controller, but you can reassign virtually all of the buttons to any function you want (besides Edit, Bank Up or Bank Down), so you could assign a button to each loop to turn them on or off at will on the fly too. The G System is effects only, so you will need a preamp of some kind in one of the loops if you defeat the amp preamp.
The GSP can do this as well, and it has amp/preamp models built in as well, but you can't switch an external pedal in/out of the signal chain without an external device. The GSP has some nice sounding boosts built in too. It's disadvantages (to me) are that it can't switch external devices on its own or switch external pedals in/out, but it's a good unit. The effects are good if you load the later 3rd party updates, but the harmonizer is distinctly lacking compared to the G System, which I know is a big issue for you Vince.