Iconoclast Software User Guide

Introduction

Iconoclast Software works exclusively with the Iconoclast hardware platform and accesses response visualization, deep editing, additional EQ filters, stereo enhancement processing, and file storage of settings.

System Requirements

The following versions of MacOS and Windows are supported:

  • MacOS / OS X 10.7+, 64-bit Intel processors only
  • Microsoft Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10

Installation

To install the software:

  • In Windows, double-click the downloaded installer and follow the prompts.
  • In OS X, double-click on the downloaded .dmg file and then on Expanse.

If the Iconoclast hardware is not connected, the software will run in demo mode. Not all features are visible in demo mode.

First Time Use

Before attaching Iconoclast the first time, make sure Iconoclast Software is closed.
  • Attach Iconoclast with a micro-B USB cable (included).
  • In Windows, you will see the "Installing..." bubble in the Taskbar; please wait until the driver completes installation before launching the software.
  • Launch Iconoclast Software.

You only need to wait for the driver to install the first time you connect Iconoclast.

When the software detects that Iconoclast hardware is connected, the USB Status Icon (in the lower right corner of the software window) will turn from gray to black.

Fundamentals of Operation

When the Iconoclast hardware is connected, the software loads a preview of its current firmware and last settings. Changes made in the software will be to this preview image, which can be heard in real time. Nothing is saved to the Iconoclast hardware until

  • you select File > Save Preview to Iconoclast, or
  • upon exiting, you select 'Yes' when asked 'Save preview to Iconoclast?' 

If you do not save this preview image, you will have the option to

  • select Discard, in which case Iconoclast will immediately revert to your previously saved image, or
  • select Close, in which case the current state is maintained until power is cycled, after which Iconoclast will revert to your previously saved image

Any changes made in the software are stored and reloaded the next time you launch the software. 

Selecting File > Save Settings File... opens a dialog box that allows you to save all current settings to a file. There is no limit to the number of files you may store. Selecting File > Open Settings File... allows you to load the settings from a previously-saved file.

If you want to load the default settings, select File > Restore Default Settings.

Settings cannot be recalled directly from the Iconoclast hardware; however, a backup file is stored each time settings are written to Iconoclast. These backups can be found in your Documents folder, under Iconoclast/Backups and may be opened using the File > Open Settings File... menu option.

Filters and Equalization

The Response tab displays all settings that affect the frequency response. These settings are grouped in sub-tabs along the bottom.

The composite frequency response is shown above the setting knobs and includes any real-time changes on the Iconoclast hardware itself. Visualization is extremely helpful for seeing exactly how each control affects the response.

If you prefer to view the response of the currently-selected tab only (rather than the composite response), select View > Only Current Tab.

Low Adjust

The Low Adjust tab displays the controls that affect the low frequencies.

By default, the Low knob approximates a single-12" open-back cabinet when the knob is turned fully counter-clockwise and a 4-12" closed-back cabinet when the knob is turned fully clockwise. In between, the knob morphs between these two types of cabinets.

This behavior is accomplished by controlling both the cutoff frequency of a high-pass filter and the gain of a low-shelf filter. If desired, these controls can be decoupled so that the Low knob controls:

  • only the high-pass filter frequency—in this case, the low shelf gain can be set to a fixed value
  • only the low shelf gain—in this case, the high-pass filter frequency can be set to a fixed value

In any case, the low shelf filter's frequency and slope can be altered from their default values in the software.

Mid Adjust

The Mid Adjust tab displays the controls that affect the midrange frequencies.

Iconoclast emulates the interaction between a virtual amplifier and the loudspeaker. This interaction depends largely on the damping factor of the amplifier. The lower an amplifier's damping factor, the greater effect the loudspeaker's impedance will have on the frequency response. The impedance curve of most guitar speakers is (roughly speaking) a broad midrange cut; therefore, when coupled with an amplifier with low damping factor, the response will also have a broad midrange cut.

The Mid knob is essentially a damping factor control and therefore acts like a broad midrange cut when turned counter-clockwise. The controls in the software allow you to change the virtual loudspeaker impedance, thereby changing the character of midrange cut.

High Adjust

The High Adjust tab displays the controls that affect the high frequencies.

The Filter Type control changes the type of low-pass filter, which mainly changes the cutoff slope of the filter. The Fizz Enable and Level controls allow you to dial in more "fizz"—frequencies above the filter's cutoff.

Dynamics

Power Compression results when a loudspeaker is driven hard for a significant amount of time. Power compression is different than normal compression: it's more like dynamic filtering when the driving amplifier has a low damping factor (as most guitar amps do).

The Power Compression controls allow you to adjust both the sensitivity to (or amount of) and response time of power compression.

EQ

Two additional bands of EQ (equalization) are available to do with what you please. Either may be configured as a parametric or shelf EQ. A parametric EQ is useful for boosting or cutting the region around a frequency. This EQ has adjustable gain, center frequency and bandwidth (BW). A shelf EQ is useful for boosting or cutting the region above/below a frequency. This EQ has adjustable gain, frequency and slope.

Noise Gate

Iconoclast incorporates a studio-quality noise gate for cleaning up a noisy signal chain. While the gate's threshold is adjustable on the Iconoclast itself, all other controls are only accessible via software:

  • Attack Time is the length of time for the gate to open. This should be relatively short but not short enough to cause a 'pop' when the gate opens.
  • Hold Time is the length of time the gate stays open before the gate closes and prevents the gate from closing prematurely during brief moments of silence.
  • Release Time is the amount of time it takes for the gate to close (by 20 dB). Shorter times result in a more staccato articulation between notes, whereas longer times prevent echo & reverb tails from being abruptly cut off.
  • Hysteresis is the difference between the 'open' and 'close' thresholds and prevents the gate from 'stuttering' when the signal level is near the threshold.
  • Attenuation is the amount of level reduction when the gate is closed.

 

Visualization shows the real-time signal in relation to the effect of the noise gate and aids in dialing in these controls.

Output Section

This section consists of additional controls that affect the signal output.

Stereo Enhancer

The Stereo Enhancer will create a pseudo-stereo signal from a mono input. The resulting signal is mono-compatible: in other words, the summed stereo output will exactly reproduce the original mono signal.

The Level control adjusts the amount of the effect.

The Frequency control adjusts the frequency above which is affected. Lowering the frequency increases the effect strength but reduces its naturalness.

Master

The Master Output section consists of controls for bypass, gain, and polarity:

  • Enable/Bypass implements a digital bypass of all processing except gain and polarity (below).
  • Gain allows the output level to trimmed. If the input is already near maximum level, additional gain will only drive the output into limiting and not substantially increase the overall level.
  • Polarity will invert the output signal, which may be useful to correct for a polarity inversion somewhere else in the signal chain.

 

Headphones

The analog gain of the headphone outputs may be selected.

It is possible to overdrive the headphone amplifier with a high signal level when this control is set greater than 0 dB and the Headphone Level knob is greater than about 75% of maximum. In this case, the clip (red) LED will not illuminate.

If the headphone output is used as a line (non-headphone) output, we recommend setting this control to 0 dB.

Saving & Recalling Settings (Presets)

Select File > Save Settings File... in the menu bar to save all of the current software settings to a file.

Select File > Open Settings File... in the menu bar to open a previously saved settings file. These settings will overwrite the current settings.

We may provide settings files that approximate specific speakers, cabinets, impedance curves, microphones, etc. Opening these files will overwrite only the settings that they use, and any other settings will remain unchanged.

Restoring the Default Settings

Selecting File > Restore Default Settings in the menu bar will revert all settings to their factory defaults.

Viewing a Third-Party IR

Selecting View > Open Reference IR... in the menu bar will allow you to open a third-party IR (impulse response) and view its response superimposed with that of Iconoclast. The IR file must be a .wav file. The resulting response is for comparison only and is not loaded into Iconoclast.

To hide the IR's response curve, select File > Hide Reference IR.

This function is provided so that you may compare a given IR with the response produced by Iconoclast. To approximate an IR's response:

  • Turn the Mid knob to 100%. Many IRs are captured while driving the loudspeaker with a high-damping factor amplifier. When finished, re-adjust the Mid control to taste.
  • In general, don't try to match small ripples in the IR's response and ignore narrow notches.
  • Try setting the Low Knob Control to Shelf Gain and turning the Low knob to match the low frequency gain of the IR. Adjust the Low Shelf Frequency and Slope to match.
  • Adjust the High-Pass Filter Frequency to match the "knee" of the curve (where it starts to drop off). Don't worry if the curves don't match perfectly below the knee.
  • Turn the High knob to most closely match the drop off point at high frequencies, then select the filter type that most closely matches the slope of drop off. Adjust the Fizz Gain to match the middle of what is in the IR's response.
  • Use a Parametric EQ to dial in any bump or dip in the middle of the IR's response.

 

Saving the Preview Image to Iconoclast

What you see and hear while using Iconoclast Software is only a preview and must be saved to the Iconoclast hardware for use after disconnecting from the software. To save the preview image, select File > Save Preview Image to Iconoclast.

If you forget to do this, you will be prompted to save any changed settings to the Iconoclast hardware when closing the software.

When you save these settings to the hardware, a backup file is stored in your Documents folder, under Iconoclast/Backups. These backups may be opened using the File > Open Settings File... menu option.

Use with Multiple Iconoclasts

The software may be used with more than one Iconoclast, but only one can be connected at a time.

Troubleshooting

Windows Only: When downloading Iconoclast Software, your anti-virus software issues a warning.

This is a false-positive. Iconoclast Software is clean and free of any malware. Please temporarily disable your anti-virus software while downloading and installing Iconoclast Software. Remember to re-enable your anti-virus software when finished.

Windows Only: When launching the Iconoclast Software installer, an error message appears.

The download was likely corrupted. Try again following these steps:

  • Delete the downloaded file
  • Temporarily disable any anti-virus software
  • Re-download Iconoclast Software and install
  • Launch Iconoclast Software to ensure everything is working
  • Re-enable your anti-virus software

 

Windows Only: If the "installing..." bubble does not appear when connecting the pedal for the first time

  • Disconnect the Pedal from the USB port.
  • Log out and log back in as Administrator or as a user with administrator rights.
  • Download CleanPedalDriver.exe and run it.
  • Wait for the window to close by itself.
  • Plug your pedal into USB. Wait for the driver to completely install before launching Iconoclast Software. You should see the message "Device driver software installed correctly".

 

If the software does not recognize your Iconoclast

Please try the following:

  • Make sure you have the latest version of Iconoclast Software installed. Uninstall any previous versions first.
  • (Windows 7+ only) Configure Iconoclast Software to Run as Administrator.
  • Unplug everything from your pedal, including the signal inputs and outputs.
  • Plug in the power cable
  • Plug in the USB cable

 

(Windows only) If this does not work, try the following:

  • Disconnect Iconoclast from the USB port.
  • Click the Start button.
  • In the search box, type "Device Manager" (without the quotes), then Enter.
  • Expand Human Interface Devices.
  • Reconnect your Expanse pedal to the USB port. You should see a new "HID-compliant device" appear in this list.
  • Right-click on this new device, click "Update Driver Software..." > "Browse my computer..." > "Let me pick".
  • If "HID-compliant device" does not appear in the list, uncheck "Show compatible hardware" and select "(Standard system devices)".
  • Select "HID-compliant device" > Next > Close.

 

If it still does not work, you may have a defective USB cable. It is quite common for this type of cable to go bad. We recommend trying at least 3 different cables before contacting us for support.

 

If the software does recognize your Iconoclast but fails to update

First:

  • Unplug the USB cable and cycle power on the pedal.
  • Reattach the USB cable—make sure the connection on both ends is secure.
  • Verify that the status bar shows that Iconoclast is connected and does not change. If it does, your cable or the connection at one end is faulty.

 

If this still does not work, re-install the USB driver as follows (Windows only):

  • Unplug your pedal from USB and close Iconoclast Software.
  • Download CleanPedalDriver.exe and open the folder in which you saved it.
  • Right-click on CleanPedalDriver.exe and select "Run as Administrator".
  • Wait for the window to close by itself.
  • Plug your pedal into USB. Wait for the driver to completely install before launching Iconoclast Software. You should see the message "Device driver software installed correctly".
  • Launch Iconoclast Software.

 

If you continue to have issues after trying these suggestions

Email our customer support at contact@neunaber.net. Please included a detailed explanation of your issue.