Use Line 6 Helix HX effects as MIDI controller for Neural DSP Quad Cortex (SOLVED)

Trying to use my Helix HX Effects to send CC messages to the QC to change scenes and after many hours of frustration, I assume that this unit is not able to as Line 6’s website says:

'‘The HX Effects hardware has reserved specific MIDI CC messages for global functions; these CCs cannot be used as controllers. If you attempt to learn a CC message reserved for global functions (see “Controller Assign”)’

I am assuming this makes me HX effects unit basically redundant in this case and would be better off selling it for another midi controller? The hassle!

Does anyone have any recommendations on something small + relatively easy to program? The Blackstar midi controller looks promising.

Scroll down for the solution if you’re trying to do this too!

Morningstar controllers are used and liked by many owners. There are also a lot of YouTube videos regarding how to integrate the Morningstar with the QC.

Reserved midi message on the Helix is for incoming message, no problem to send any message to the QC

Solved my issue, I’ll post the resolution a little later on for anyone else looking to do the same thing as me - use the Helix HX effects to control scene changes on the QC via MIDI.


To clarify, you CAN use the Line 6 Helix HX Effects unit to control scene changes on the Quad Cortex:

Signal flow:

  • Quad Cortex → Into → Focusrite 2i2 Interface → My iMac
  • Helix HX Effects → Midi Out → Quad Cortex’s Midi In (Via 5-pin midi cable)

Quad Cortex MIDI Settings
(3 Dots in the top right > scroll down to bottom and tap settings > Tap midi settings. Your settings should be:

  • Midi Channel: 1
  • Midi Thru: On
  • Midi Over USB: On
  • Ignore Duplicate PC: On

To achieve Scene changes, within a preset, using the Helix HX Effects to send CC messages to the QC:

  1. Connect your Helix HX Effects to your PC/Mac and open the HX Edit
  2. Go to the Command Center

Your command center should look like this:

The footswitch looking buttons (6 of them bottom left) relate to your Helix HX Effects units physical footswitches; meaning we can set up to 6 CC commands via these. The QC has 8 footswitches.

  1. Select the footswitch you want to be able to press and send the CC message to, to change scene.
    For this example, I have set mine up so that the buttons on my Helix reflect the same buttons on my QC. (or as close as posible)

Example: if you wanted the bottom left footswitch on the Helix to control the bottom left footswitch of the QC (button E):

  1. Set the MIDI channel to: 1
  2. Set the CC # value to whatever CC value you want. You can find a full list of CC values in the QC
    manual page 95

In this example, I am matching the bottom left footswitch on the Helix to the bottom left footswitch on my QC (E). So therefore the CC # value for E is ‘39’.

  1. Set your CC # value to 39.
  2. Set the value to 128
  3. Set the Switch LED to whatever you like
  4. Set the name of the switch (next to customise) so you know what each footswitch does.

Repeat the above process until you have got enough footswitches you’re happy with.

I labelled my footswitches on the Helix to the following - I have added the letters of the footswitches on the QC it controls to be clear.

For example:
I press Octave button on my Helix and it activates the scene H on my QC.
I press Crunch button on my Helix and it activates the scene F on my QC.

Please note your Quad Cortex MUST BE IN SCENE MODE for this to work.

I have not played around with hybrid/preset or stomp mode yet, but if I come across anything I think is useful I will post another post explaining it all for you lovely lot.

Any questions - feel free to fire away, but please appreciate I am no MIDI genius - just some experience using MIDI like this before.

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Nice one! Thank you!

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