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Another Drink Of The Kool-aid On It's Way....

variax pod hd500

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#1 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 07:13 AM

I made the plunge and pulled the trigger on a "Dent & Scratch" JTV59 in Cherry Burst from Sweetwater.  I am really excited about this too, because I already have and pretty much love a POD HD500 that I will be playing this through.  That makes 2/3 of the so called "Dream Rig", but I really don't see myself getting the amp because I already have a pair of Tech21 Power Engines that sound great to me AND are a stereo pairing which is something I don't believe the DT25 or it's siblings offer.

I don't play out right now, and I bought this strictly because I want to see what I can create in my modest home studio in the basement.  I have given it a lot of thought actually, and I have had Line6 gear in the past including the PODxt and GuitarPort and they were "OK", but not nearly as good sounding to me as my Fender tube amps with a few quality pedals and a Strat or a Tele, so they remained mostly "toys" for lack of a better description. 

In any event, plugging into the HD500 changed all of that for me in many ways.  Are the models in there "just as realistic" as the genuine article?  For the ones I have, namely the 59 Bassman RI and the Deluxe Reverb RI I'd say they are darn close.  I couldn't afford the others, and frankly I wouldn't want to maintain it all lol.  But now, I can develop great tones in painstaking detail to just sit and noodle on and HAVE FUN, which is of course why we all got into this to begin with, right?  So the next logical step has to be this JVT59 Variax in my mind because it extends what I really love about the HD500 to the instrument in my hands.  As I understand things, I can create a patch that selects the amp, fx and guitar processing by connecting the VDI cable from this guitar to the HD500.  Assuming that is true, my question is this;  Why wouldn't ANY guitarist want such a thing for the less than 2k investment?  In my case, the Dent and Scratch sale means I'll have less than $1550 invested and in return, I can play Mr. Wizard with my HD guitar and HD amp modeler.

I'll probably always have my tube gear, because although it's a one trick pony -- it's a hell of a trick.  But I look forward to tinkering like a Mad Scientist in my basement as well lol...

So, any advice for the uninitiated?


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#2 guitarno

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:05 AM

    I am in a very similar situation to yours. I also recently bought a JTV-59 and a HD500X. I was originally only looking for a better multi-effects unit, and went to try out the HD500X. I also had used some line6's units in the past (guitarport, Pod X3Live), but when I went in to try out the pod, I also tried several of the JTV's they had & was really floored with the JTV models & just the quality of the guitar itself. The two of them together are really a great combination, as you mentioned with the ability of the pod to switch guitar models on the JTV. Lots of options.

 

   I wish I had some advise for you but I've just started with both of these and am still feeling my way around both of them. I also tried the DT25 amp briefly, and really did like the amp, but not sure if that's what I will do when my finances recover. I would be very interested in your impressions of using the JTV & HD500 with your Tech21 Power Engines. A pair of these is a setup I've been thinking about for some time. I am a big fan of stereo ambient effects for guitar, and that sounds like a great way to go.

 

   Right now, I have a pair of Presonus Eris 8's, or a Egnater Rebel 30 head & 1 12" cabinet for choices to amplify the JTV & Pod. Both have their pluses and minuses. I really like the Eris's, and they do a better job of bringing out the acoustic models of the JTV. They're a little crisp sounding for distorted tones of the Pod. The 1 12" Egnater cabinet does a better job on the distorted tones, but not as nice for the acoustic models, and sounds a little "boxy" in general with the pod, though the amp and cab sound fine running a regular guitar straight in. I have been running the pod into the effects loop return (power amp in) on the Eganter head to bypass the preamp. Not sure I'm satisfied with either approach yet, but I'm still experimenting at this point.

 

I would spend some time playing with the model adjustments you can do in workbench on the JTV models. There are really a lot of variations available there too. Between them all, enough to keep a "Mad Scientist" busy for quite a while!

 

Cheers!


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#3 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:26 AM

    I am in a very similar situation to yours. I also recently bought a JTV-59 and a HD500X. I was originally only looking for a better multi-effects unit, and went to try out the HD500X. I also had used some line6's units in the past (guitarport, Pod X3Live), but when I went in to try out the pod, I also tried several of the JTV's they had & was really floored with the JTV models & just the quality of the guitar itself. The two of them together are really a great combination, as you mentioned with the ability of the pod to switch guitar models on the JTV. Lots of options.

 

   I wish I had some advise for you but I've just started with both of these and am still feeling my way around both of them. I also tried the DT25 amp briefly, and really did like the amp, but not sure if that's what I will do when my finances recover. I would be very interested in your impressions of using the JTV & HD500 with your Tech21 Power Engines. A pair of these is a setup I've been thinking about for some time. I am a big fan of stereo ambient effects for guitar, and that sounds like a great way to go.

 

   Right now, I have a pair of Presonus Eris 8's, or a Egnater Rebel 30 head & 1 12" cabinet for choices to amplify the JTV & Pod. Both have their pluses and minuses. I really like the Eris's, and they do a better job of bringing out the acoustic models of the JTV. They're a little crisp sounding for distorted tones of the Pod. The 1 12" Egnater cabinet does a better job on the distorted tones, but not as nice for the acoustic models, and sounds a little "boxy" in general with the pod, though the amp and cab sound fine running a regular guitar straight in. I have been running the pod into the effects loop return (power amp in) on the Eganter head to bypass the preamp. Not sure I'm satisfied with either approach yet, but I'm still experimenting at this point.

 

I would spend some time playing with the model adjustments you can do in workbench on the JTV models. There are really a lot of variations available there too. Between them all, enough to keep a "Mad Scientist" busy for quite a while!

 

Cheers!

 

I have the older Power Engines, the ones with the Tech21 Special Design full range speakers in them.  I guess the newer ones have a Celstion Seventy80 full range speakers.  I love stereo ambient effects and with the ability of the HD500 to have multiple amps as it does, with the further ability to set panning for each chain it sounds really great.  When I first got these, I wasn't as big a fan but that was my own fault.  I also have an older Vox Tonelab (table top) with the VC-4 footswitch that I used before the HD500.  I had inadvertantly set the outpout type on the Tonelab to "Amp" as opposed to "line" and as a result, the sound sucked!  I was getting pretty disheartened by this as I had used my PODxT without this issue until I noticed my mistake.  Once I changed that setting, the blankets came off the PE60s and I laughed at my stupidity.

 

In any event, I do really like the Power Engines.  Not only do they sound excellent, they can also act as stage monitors because the PE60 includes an XLR output that you connect to the front of house, leaving the levels to the sound guy.  This worked great when I used them in the Worship band I was in for a while.  You can also chain them together with this same mechanism so you can literally build your output to suit your needs.  But in my studio, the two I have are fine as is and the can mosve quite a bit of air at 60w each.  The idea of a "dream rig" is a great idea, but in my mind I will already have that with the setup I'll have come Tuesday. 

I looked at the HD500x they just came out with, but for now the HD500 is fine for me as I have not really bumped into the DSP limit too much yet.  Once I think, and then I was getting really silly and threw in the kitchen sink.  We'll see how it goes when the Variax is added in I guess, but listening to Sean Halley play on those demos makes me want to play a lot more often already...

I can hardly wait to start tinkering and smithing my sounds.

Edit:  I should add the the PE60s come with a 3 band equalizer on the back to make up for room differences, although I have always had mine set to 12 o'clock position (Neutral)


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#4 nikoniablue

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:45 AM

Advice?  Book some holiday!  The combination of JTV and HD500 is awesome and you'll want to spend tons of time with it............


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#5 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 11:06 AM

Advice?  Book some holiday!  The combination of JTV and HD500 is awesome and you'll want to spend tons of time with it............

I'm already feeling the flu coming on for Wednesday lol....


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#6 ur2funky

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 11:27 AM

I had the DT25 and sold it. To me, it doesn't do the "Dream Rig" justice, since it's only good for electric tones, not the acoustics. If they had put a solid state channel and a tweeter in it for the acoustic tones, switchable like the rest, then we'd have something.

Sweetwater had a Cherry '59 I was dying to buy. Last 4 of the serial number is 0725...is this the one you got? If so, I am mighty envious!

I've never heard the Power Engines, but the acoustic models in the JTV need something with a PA full response, or FRFR as the lingo is now, to really appreciate them. So no amp models on the HD500, thru your studio monitors will sound fab.

You're gonna love it!

And you'll want to use the VDI cable with the HD500, as it will power the JTV and you'll never have to think about charging the battery.

Hopefully you already use the computer editor for the HD500. If not, get it.

With a JTV, remember you can use the volume and tone knobs to control anything on the HD500...on one patch, I use the tone knob as a whammy bar! Awesome!
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#7 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 11:57 AM

I had the DT25 and sold it. To me, it doesn't do the "Dream Rig" justice, since it's only good for electric tones, not the acoustics. If they had put a solid state channel and a tweeter in it for the acoustic tones, switchable like the rest, then we'd have something.

Sweetwater had a Cherry '59 I was dying to buy. Last 4 of the serial number is 0725...is this the one you got? If so, I am mighty envious!

I've never heard the Power Engines, but the acoustic models in the JTV need something with a PA full response, or FRFR as the lingo is now, to really appreciate them. So no amp models on the HD500, thru your studio monitors will sound fab.

You're gonna love it!

And you'll want to use the VDI cable with the HD500, it will power the JTV and you'll never have to think about charging the battery.

 

Hopefully you already use the computer editor for the HD500.  If not, get it.

 

With a JTV, remember you can use the volume and tone knobs to control anything on the HD500...on one patch, I use the tone knob as a whammy bar!  Awesome!

 

I got a different one than you were looking at but I'm bettin' I'll love it anyway!  Yes, I do use the ND Edit program and I will use the Workbench as well.  This kind of thing is whgat is really attractive to me actually...

I was noticing that the tone knob (or volume) can be used for anything.  Sean Halley was using it to control the drive on the amp.  I didn't know that when I bought this guitar, so that only makes it more appealing.

 

As for the power engines, here is the product page at Tech21:

http://www.tech21nyc...erengine60.html


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#8 ur2funky

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 12:04 PM

Here are some screen shots of the settings for the tone knob whammy...

Attached Files


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#9 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 12:06 PM

Here are some screen shots of the settings for the tone knob whammy...

 

Awesome...thanks for sharing!


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#10 ur2funky

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 12:09 PM

Sure thing.  I wish I could just send you the patch, but I can't attach those files on this website.


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#11 smrybacki

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 12:22 PM

PM me at some point and I'll get you my email...if you want to anyway :-)


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#12 ur2funky

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 12:34 PM

PM me at some point and I'll get you my email...if you want to anyway :-)

 

Just sent you mine...cheers!


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