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Vortex revisited

Hi all,

Seems like every so often the discussion comes up as to whether or not
the Vortex is a very noisy unit (I know I've been in the "mine is very
noisy" camp before.)  Anyway, I recently took my studio apart and
re-wired it back together in an attempt so remove some of the hiss the
vortex was contributing to the effects loop.  I put the vortex into its
own send/return so that I could at least control when I added the hiss
of the vortex, but before I did this I did a test.  Plugging straight in
to the vortex and listening with headphones from the output on the back
of the unit, the vortex was very very clean, almost no hiss whatsoever.
After I got the mixer all wired back up I plugged in through that route
and what I discovered was that there was a fair amount of hiss in the
signal again.

After some messing around I discovered the root of the problem I think.
The vortex seems to have a sort of feedback going on that takes any
incoming noise (like hum from a pickup or whatnot) and it sends it back
through the processor and so on until it becomes really audible.  I
found that when I switched patches, the noise floor would drop down and
then slowly the hiss would start building up as the effect was on for a

So that's my theory, the Vortex is not inherently a noisy box, but
perhaps an overly sensitive one and the nature of its effects will
amplify pre-existent noise until its slightly bothersome.

Do I have a fix for this?  Not really, but now I am more relaxed about
the hiss since I know its more a remnant of the guitar* I use rather
than the Vortex itself.

Maybe every Vortex user already knew this, but I must have missed it in
the various go rounds on the topic.

Thanks for letting me ramble


*A 65 Fender Mustang that has been known to pick up radio signals and
various other sonic anomalies on occasion.