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My Variax 500 Is Dead For 2nd Time In A Year

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#1 mofostone

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 09:57 AM

i bought it used a couple years ago and after a year it went out and since then ive not used the batteries but paid more than i should've for the power adapter plus the two expensive grounded cables it needs, im just gonna take it apart and try to clean it maybe if anyone has pics or videos of what needs to be done, id appreciate it, if it doesnt work im just gonna toss the damn thing

thanks'

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#2 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 11:32 AM

Please clarify "Went Out".  Does it do nothing at all?  I would check the power connections.  Make triple sure you install the battery with the right polarity.  You can blow the diode on the board if you even momentarily touch the battery to the connector backwards.  That has killed many old Variax's.  Inspecting the board is very easy - just remove the back plate.  The battery plugs in with a two pin connector.

I recently had mine all apart to install Ghost pickups from Graphtech.  Sounds MUCH better with these.  I have had my 500 since they first came out and it's been perfectly reliable.


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#3 mofostone

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 08:45 PM

i meant it didnt work with batteries or the power box, but youre right i took it apart and cleaned everything and made sure the connections were nice and tight, with all that said line 6 had no manual or diagram of the computer which is kinda crappy, i couldnt find it anywhere but i just did it and it worked so im very happy with that, just a little bittter with line 6 since i own approximately 7 different line 6 products and they dont really seem to give a squirt about anything over a year old, i actually bought riffworks because it was on the l6 site and i questioned why there was nothing i could do key wise with my kb37 other than for an interface and i was told they had nothing to to with riffworks or any sounds other than what i can get out of my guitar port, so why the hell make a keyboard if it doesnt work with the several other l6 items i own, from now on i wont put any loyalty to any one company unless im getting paid by them cuz with all the equipment ive bought from this company in just 3 years youd think a little appreciation and effort wouldnt hurt, but it is good stuff and now ill just worry about it myself, im glad yours works perfectly but if it does go wrong dont expect l6 to help with anything thats not brand new

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#4 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 06:10 AM

Such is life for any modern electronic products.  They are not designed to be repaired.  If you have a couple of year old TV that  craps out on you , it will be cheaper to buy a new one than have it fixed.  That is the down side to a Variax.  It's got very complex electronic components and it's not designed to be repaired.  You could replace the whole board but you will pay through the nose for it.


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#5 clay-man

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 11:57 AM

Such is life for any modern electronic products.  They are not designed to be repaired.  If you have a couple of year old TV that  craps out on you , it will be cheaper to buy a new one than have it fixed.  That is the down side to a Variax.  It's got very complex electronic components and it's not designed to be repaired.  You could replace the whole board but you will pay through the nose for it.

 

That problem is arguable. 

Maybe from the component quality in technology these days being less good.

 

There's plenty of technologically advanced stuff that lasted for decades on end. Something should not be considered to fail in 5 years just because it has a processor in it.


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#6 Blues_man001

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 02:02 PM

Such is life for any modern electronic products.  They are not designed to be repaired.  If you have a couple of year old TV that  craps out on you , it will be cheaper to buy a new one than have it fixed.  That is the down side to a Variax.  It's got very complex electronic components and it's not designed to be repaired.  You could replace the whole board but you will pay through the nose for it.

 

I hate easy cop out answers like this.  Replies like these aren't needed, aren't productive (other than to increase your post count) and you're coming across as a jerk to someone who needed help and came here hoping to find it.  Someone said the same derogatory thing in my thread about my bricked V500 during a firmware update.  The guitar now sits in it's case, while I decide to route in a standard humbucker, spend a lollipop-ton on roland products, or simply set fire to the guitar.......


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#7 TheRealZap

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:07 PM

Chill out... sometimes the obvious isn't what we want to hear... but it's no less true.

he was trying to be helpful and temper your expectations... your reply came across as more "jerk" like than his.

i'm not happy that this happened to you... but nothing last forever dude. sorry.

 

I hate easy cop out answers like this.  Replies like these aren't needed, aren't productive (other than to increase your post count) and you're coming across as a jerk to someone who needed help and came here hoping to find it.  Someone said the same derogatory thing in my thread about my bricked V500 during a firmware update.  The guitar now sits in it's case, while I decide to route in a standard humbucker, spend a lollipop-ton on roland products, or simply set fire to the guitar.......


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#8 clay-man

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:12 PM

Chill out... sometimes the obvious isn't what we want to hear... but it's no less true.

he was trying to be helpful and temper your expectations... your reply came across as more "jerk" like than his.

i'm not happy that this happened to you... but nothing last forever dude. sorry.

 

The problem isn't that it's not lasting forever, but lasting for a petty amount of time. It doesn't matter if the product has technology in it.

Many technological things last almost forever. The problem is the component quality control.


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#9 TheRealZap

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:19 PM

Every manufacturer has a warranty and that's the only guarantee you get. I can guarantee that the 500 at least lasted 3x the warranty length perhaps closer to 10x at this point.
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#10 clay-man

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:31 PM

Every manufacturer has a warranty and that's the only guarantee you get. I can guarantee that the 500 at least lasted 3x the warranty length perhaps closer to 10x at this point.

 

It's true, but that doesn't mean that it should have a death sentence that short. Like I said, the problem is component quality. 

The JTVs are supposed to help correct any errors that the old Variaxes had though, so yeah. The only problem was that awful problem about the string balls ending up in the guts on the 69. 

 

If you take care of what you got it should last you a very long time. The Variax's guts doesn't really have any physical interaction so it should last pretty decently.

 

The whole TV crapping out argument is ridiculous because TVs last a long time from my experience, it's just once again, the component quality control, and a bit of bad luck.


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#11 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:32 PM

I was not being a jerk I was just saying that all of our fun gadgets are designed to work a long time but not designed to be repaired.  (only replaced)   Many things electronic will cost as much to repair as to replace.  After the warranty expires it's on us.


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#12 TheRealZap

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:39 PM

Don't disagree. They should last a long time. Many do. But it's not exactly the same as most electronics. It has moving parts and gets handled a bit more than your average appliance.

It's true, but that doesn't mean that it should have a death sentence that short. Like I said, the problem is component quality.
The JTVs are supposed to help correct any errors that the old Variaxes had though, so yeah. The only problem was that awful problem about the string balls ending up in the guts on the 69.

If you take care of what you got it should last you a very long time. The Variax's guts doesn't really have any physical interaction so it should last pretty decently.

The whole TV crapping out argument is ridiculous because TVs last a long time from my experience, it's just once again, the component quality control, and a bit of bad luck.


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#13 clay-man

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:39 PM

I was not being a jerk I was just saying that all of our fun gadgets are designed to work a long time but not designed to be repaired.  (only replaced)   Many things electronic will cost as much to repair as to replace.  After the warranty expires it's on us.

 

Well like I said, technology heavy things with complicated circuitry can last for decades if it's made properly. Saying something should last 5 years because it has a PCB of microchips and processors is a poor excuse.


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#14 clay-man

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:43 PM

Don't disagree. They should last a long time. Many do. But it's not exactly the same as most electronics. It has moving parts and gets handled a bit more than your average appliance.

 

The electronics don't get moved on the Variax though. Nothing electronic on the Variax is getting moved besides a few wires on tremolo Variaxes. The motherboard doesn't have any physical interaction and shouldn't be prone to getting damaged because of use, other than if the components are shoddy and go out just from doing what it's supposed to. Yes it will go out after decades of use, but it should last at least a decade minimum if made properly and treated properly.


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#15 TheRealZap

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 03:59 PM

the variax 500, may well be close to a decade... they were released somewhere around 2003-2005.

with electronics its not always how you physically treat it... sometimes it's how clean/dirty the power it's getting is...

all it takes is a brownout or spike etc to lower the life expectancy.

 

The electronics don't get moved on the Variax though. Nothing electronic on the Variax is getting moved besides a few wires on tremolo Variaxes. The motherboard doesn't have any physical interaction and shouldn't be prone to getting damaged because of use, other than if the components are shoddy and go out just from doing what it's supposed to. Yes it will go out after decades of use, but it should last at least a decade minimum if made properly and treated properly.


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#16 Charlie_Watt

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 04:03 PM

Most will but some will fail.  That's the way it is with complex electronics.  My 500 is 8 years old now and it works flawlessly.  I don't gig so it doesn't leave my house.  Connectors and switches are high failure rate items in consumer electronics.


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#17 clay-man

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 03:11 AM

the variax 500, may well be close to a decade... they were released somewhere around 2003-2005.

with electronics its not always how you physically treat it... sometimes it's how clean/dirty the power it's getting is...

all it takes is a brownout or spike etc to lower the life expectancy.

 

Ok. That does make sense. 

I still think a decade is a bit too short, maybe at least the minimum depending on how well the components are, how well it was built, etc.

 

Anything under that is just bad luck and poor component quality.

 

I remember I got a POD Studio GX and it died in a year. It's stuff like that that shouldn't happen.


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#18 Woolliar

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Posted 13 September 2013 - 03:04 AM

Hi Mofostone;

 

have had this problem myslef but on a Variax Bass.

 

Sounds like you use 1/4 inch jack to plug into an amp (using on board battery power to run the guitar's electronics)?

 

If so check the Variax Cable input to your guitar. You should see a row of copper/Bronze coloured wires. There should be 8 of these. Check that they are all nicely aligned, NOT bent around, touching or depressed out of position.

 

If they are then this is very likely to be your problem. This damage can be caused by accidentally inserting a 1/4 inch jack into the variax socket when hooking up. Very easy to do, especially in the dark on a stage, and so much so that Variax issued a plug to cover this socket when not in use but I always loose mine and don't know where to buy new ones.

 

I had this problem with my bass and managed to fix it by crafting a safety pin into a small hook which I gently inserted into the variax socket to rearrange the pins. My bass then worked AOK although I had to reflash the settings on it to get all the tone model selections back.

 

Hope this helps your situation. Can send pics of jack and sfety pin tool if they're needed.

 

Back to driving my better half nuts with the bass!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Cheers,

 

Crisisurfer


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