Jump to content


Photo

Convince Me To Buy A Jtv Model Over An Original Variax


  • Please log in to reply
151 replies to this topic

#41 aeugle

aeugle

    Iknowathingortwo

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 152 posts
  • LocationMunich, Germany

Posted 27 December 2013 - 11:31 PM

what product from graphtec did you use?


  • 0

#42 arislaf

arislaf

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1095 posts
  • LocationGreece

Posted 28 December 2013 - 02:18 AM

Ghost saddle set PN8000


  • 0

#43 clay-man

clay-man

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 870 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 02:39 AM

Ghost saddle set PN8000

This should work on any old model right?

 

I'm going to switch to ghosts in the future. I'm tired of LR Baggs. I just got a new piezo half a year ago and it's already rusted, and I heard some weird crackling noises a few nights ago.

 

Piezos crapping out is not something I want to deal with. They are 12 dollars a piece, but come on. It requires taking out my bridge, detatching the cable that goes to the motherboard, soldering, then putting it all back together. I don't want to have to do that every year.


  • 1

For a minute there, I lost myself.

Radiohead_bear-728286%5B1%5D.png 


#44 arislaf

arislaf

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1095 posts
  • LocationGreece

Posted 28 December 2013 - 03:17 AM

yes it is for every old variax.Do it, i change them on 2010, if you do it correctly then you will have no problem again.


  • 0

#45 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 28 December 2013 - 06:52 AM

I switched my Variax 300 to the Graphtech saddles almost three years ago. Sounds much better, and never had a piezo problem since.


  • 0

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#46 hurghanico

hurghanico

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1396 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 11:26 AM

yes it is for every old variax.Do it, i change them on 2010, if you do it correctly then you will have no problem again.

 

forgive me Aris, but I remember you lately said you had some problems with your GraphTech saddles..

and I still don't know if you solved your issue and how..

 

http://line6.com/sup...oblems/?p=23458

 

 

I switched my Variax 300 to the Graphtech saddles almost three years ago. Sounds much better, and never had a piezo problem since.

 

tell me if I'm wrong, but I imagine that since you have a JTV you are not still playing your 300 that much.. therefore your "never had a piezo problem since" statement is surely true, and appreciated, but as a guarantee can not be reassuring all that much, when you play your 300 maybe once a year to remember the old times..

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

I also am interested in the saddles subject because in future I could decide to buy this GraphTech set of saddles, only because of the presumed greater longevity, while the sounds I would prefer that remain as they are as with the LR Baggs, which I still don't know if I can find in Italy.. and the Line6 store ships only to U.S. mailing address..

 

So I would know if really the GraphTech last much longer than the original ones


  • 0

#47 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 28 December 2013 - 11:49 AM


tell me if I'm wrong, but I imagine that since you have a JTV you are not still playing your 300 that much.. therefore your "never had a piezo problem since" statement is surely true, and appreciated, but as a guarantee can not be reassuring all that much, when you play your 300 maybe once a year to remember the old times..

 

...

I still play my 300 much more than that, but your point is well taken. My JTV is certainly my most-often played guitar now. The thing about my 300 is that it has a custom Warmoth neck and body and so I often play it just for the sheer pleasure of its playability. Also, when I jam with friends it often gets a workout. I stand by my claim, especially the improvement in sound quality. Not meant to be a guarantee of anything.


  • 0

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#48 offashead

offashead

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 30 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 11:49 AM

Anyway. I have a JTV 69, not the best build quality but far from the worst. No issues to speak of, no problems with the neck and no problems with the electronics. I needed  to raise the action somewhat as there was some considerable buzzing going on regarding the bottom E and A string. The guitar was bought in the UK 6 months ago for £875 brand new. I like it, but, it does take a little getting used to, you have to play it a little different to a  trad guitar. I have reflashed back and forth between 1.9 and 2.00 many times using the dongle thingy with no issues. I must have dropped lucky.


  • 0

#49 clay-man

clay-man

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 870 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 02:09 PM

The reason why they don't have problems with the piezo with the ghost system is because of 2 factors

 

1) The piezo elements are entirely encased in the saddle, ergo it's not exposed to possible corrosion.

 

2) It has a grounding wire, unlike the stock piezos. The biggest problem with the piezos going out is that it grounds by contact against the saddle, and sometimes it goes out over time because of garbage like sweat and dirt getting in between the saddle and the piezo element.


  • 1

For a minute there, I lost myself.

Radiohead_bear-728286%5B1%5D.png 


#50 hurghanico

hurghanico

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1396 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 03:13 PM

...The biggest problem with the piezos going out is that it grounds by contact against the saddle, and sometimes it goes out over time because of garbage like sweat and dirt getting in between the saddle and the piezo element.

 

yeah.. that's exactly what I experienced lately with the 6th string piezo of my 700.. I cleaned all and I reversed the piezo 180°.. for several days now is working flawlessly


  • 0

#51 oleus

oleus

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 47 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 05:39 PM

I created a monster with this thread!

It went from convince me to buy a jtv over an old model to making me doubt whether I should buy any variax right now.

I don't want to be soldering piezos or changing necks - I'm actually leaning towards buying the cheapest eBay variax I can find in decent condition to use with my hd500 until new models come out.
  • 1

#52 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 28 December 2013 - 07:43 PM

I don't want to be soldering piezos or changing necks - I'm actually leaning towards buying the cheapest eBay variax I can find in decent condition to use with my hd500 until new models come out.

 

I think that might be the best option at the moment.

 

Buying a used Variax may still leave you changing piezos though - they will probably fail eventually. If you can find one where someone has already added a nice set of GraphTech saddles you will be ahead of the game, otherwise expect replacing them to be part of the Variax experience.

 

I am planning to replace the Tyler bridge on my JTV with a Graphtech Ghost bridge, not because I love spending extra money on my guitars but because the stock JTV bridge is a poorly made piece of junk - the saddles do not fit properly into the slots on the bridge and they move around while playing and every time they touch the sides of the slot in the bridge they make a loud CLACK!!! sound though the amp.

 

Same bridge on the JTV89 and the JTV59 - total garbage IMO. I have no info on whether the bridge on the JTV69 is any better, maybe someone else here will have an opinion.

 

Another thing to consider - if you buy an older Variax and it breaks down it may be tough to get the parts necessary to repair it without buying a second Variax to cannibalize, but with a new JTV you will at least be able to get parts for a while.


  • 0

#53 arislaf

arislaf

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1095 posts
  • LocationGreece

Posted 28 December 2013 - 09:36 PM

forgive me Aris, but I remember you lately said you had some problems with your GraphTech saddles..

and I still don't know if you solved your issue and how..

 

http://line6.com/sup...oblems/?p=23458

 

 

 

I said : yes it is for every old variax.Do it, i change them on 2010, if you do it correctly then you will have no problem again.

Yes my friend, that is true, and is the reason I said to ''do it correctly'' I bullsheet the grounding wires, solder didn't stick well and make those crackling noises from the wire when I played (have tremolo bridge). Thank you for reminding this post, although I don;t know if it will help the guy on the OP of the ghost saddles

 

BTW, I play the JTV for most of the 2.0 guitars, but the 700 for the awesome strat, acoustics, and custom gibson.


  • 0

#54 hurghanico

hurghanico

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1396 posts

Posted 29 December 2013 - 04:01 AM

...Thank you for reminding this post, although I don;t know if it will help the guy on the OP of the ghost saddles..

 

why not my friend Aris?.. ;)

 

it helps us to understand how important it is that the assembly work is done with competence and precision ..

I would be glad to know it in order to make a well-considered decision
before eventually buying something..


  • 1

#55 Charlie_Watt

Charlie_Watt

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1159 posts

Posted 29 December 2013 - 06:41 AM

I agree that the Ghost piezo's are a big improvement on an old Variax but the installation is not easy.  I installed them on my 500 and it was difficult to get everything soldered to the bridge flex circuit.  I had to make room for all of the ground wires since the original piezo's did not have a ground wire.  I was having ground noise and cutout problems with the old piezos.  They relied on grounding to the strings which was a very bad design.  The Ghost piezo's are very quiet and consistent.  The output is much higher so I had to turn down the string volumes to avoid clipping.  It was worth the effort but I have 40 years of soldering experience and most Variax owners do not.  I would not recommend doing this unless you trust your soldering skills.


  • 2

#56 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 29 December 2013 - 08:03 AM

... It was worth the effort but I have 40 years of soldering experience and most Variax owners do not.  I would not recommend doing this unless you trust your soldering skills.

I agree. I had it done by a professional guitar tech who also did a complete setup after the installation, which I also recommend.


  • 1

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#57 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 29 December 2013 - 08:09 AM

...

It went from convince me to buy a jtv over an old model to making me doubt whether I should buy any variax right now...

 

Remember, oleus, that this is a support forum. Most people are here because they are looking for support to help with some problem or other. It should be no surprise that you hear mostly from people who have problems here. The many, many more Variax owners who are very satisfied and do not have problems generally don't come here.

 

I wouldn't generalize or extrapolate much based on what you hear here. Chances are very high that any Variax you purchase will be problem free. Of course, when purchasing used equipment, caveat emptor. You need to do your due diligence on the specific equipment you are looking to purchase in order to avoid ending up with a problematic guitar that someone just wants to dump.


  • 1

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#58 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 31 December 2013 - 12:44 AM

Remember, oleus, that this is a support forum. Most people are here because they are looking for support to help with some problem or other. It should be no surprise that you hear mostly from people who have problems here. The many, many more Variax owners who are very satisfied and do not have problems generally don't come here.

 

I wouldn't generalize or extrapolate much based on what you hear here. Chances are very high that any Variax you purchase will be problem free. Of course, when purchasing used equipment, caveat emptor. You need to do your due diligence on the specific equipment you are looking to purchase in order to avoid ending up with a problematic guitar that someone just wants to dump.

 

I think the number of returned scratch'n'dent JTVs available at Musiciansfriend.com and other sites as discussed elsewhere in these forums should be a clue as to how satisfied purchasers are with JTVs in general. Either those websites are selling 10 times more JTVs than they are Gibsons and Fenders or 10 times the number of dissatisfied customers are returning them.

 

I am not convinced Line 6 is selling many JTVs, at least not many that are not immediately returned - where are you getting your info on all of these "many, many more Variax owners who are very satisfied" who don't come to these forums?

 

I have been coming here for years and have always been a huge Line 6 supporter, anyone can take a look at the 1000+ posts I made here before I purchased my JTV and see that I was not here to complain about Line6 products but to praise them shamelessly.

 

My original POD Bean? Loved it! My Pod XT? It was the bees knees! I still have both of them! My Vetta II? What a cool amp! Sold it when my HD500 rendered it obsolete! My Variaxes? Loved them so much I converted them to cool looking guitars! Loved the Variaxes so much I couldn't wait to get a JTV! Finally, a Variax that didn't look weird!

 

I really wanted to be in love with my JTV... weird tuning problems that weren't there on my older Variaxes? I can work around that! The strings fall off the neck when I do pull offs? Hmmmm, okay, I just won't do pull offs on that string anymore. Problem solved. Clickity-clacking noises from the bridge when I fingerpick? Uhhhhh,,, okay, that's three strikes, sorry JTV but you are out.

 

I wanted to love my JTV SOOOOO MUCH that I spent a ton of time tracking down one of the few Ibanez necks that will work as a replacement (this Ibanez neck was only made for a couple of years on two different models). I wanted to love my JTV so much that I did some snooping around and found a GraphTech bridge that will solve the clacking problem. I WANT TO BELIEVE so badly that I still have not sold my JTV after 6 months of it collecting dust waiting for me to get around to someday make it playable.

 

But on the other hand, at this point it would be more useful to me as a boat anchor and the temptation to get rid of it on ebay is great... I got it for next to nothing, I will not lose money if I sell it, but still, I WANT IT TO WORK so badly I keep hanging on to this bad relationship.

 

So go ahead, tell this guy to ignore us complainers and buy a JTV, but I ignored the complainers and wish I hadn't.

 

Really I don't come her just to complain about my crummy JTV, I come here to check to see whether any updates are available for my JTV or HD500 and read about peoples experiences with Line6 products and help people out when I can.

 

And in my opinion telling the OP in this thread to steer clear of the JTV for now will be much more helpful than just telling him to ignore the complainers.

 

Regarding used older Variaxes, I believe the only way to avoid the original piezos going bad is to never allow any moisture or dirt anywhere near the piezos - this can be accomplished either by:

 

1. NEVER playing the Variax, or

 

2. Only playing it under strict labloratory conditions, i.e. no humidity, no sweating, no dried skin cells flaking off, no contaminants in the air, best to just forget about ever playing a Variax in a smoky barroom... take it out and strum a few chords in your bedroom once in a while and they should be good for many years of service provided the previous owner(s) have maintained the same standards. Like you said, due diligence... ask to see the GuitarFax!


  • 1

#59 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 31 December 2013 - 06:43 AM

...

 

So go ahead, tell this guy to ignore us complainers and buy a JTV,......

 

I didn't do that. I didn't call anyone a complainer; that was your word (I hope you won't referring to yourself). I acknowledged that some people have very real problems with their Line 6 equipment, and that's usually why they are here.

 

I did not tell him to buy a JTV. I told him that he shouldn't extrapolate from this audience to the general population of JTV owners, and assume he would have problems.

 

In fact I didn't give him any buy/don't buy JTV advice. You are doing that. I think he should make his own decision based on the information he has/gets. I am simply advising him on how to interpret/weigh the information and advice he is getting here, including yours and mine.


  • 0

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#60 phil_m

phil_m

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 5511 posts
  • LocationMinneapolis, MN

Posted 31 December 2013 - 06:55 AM

The thing is that if you went by negative reviews online of products, you could hardly ever buy anything. If I look at almost any product on Amazon, the 1-star reviews usually make up at least 10% of the reviews even for solid products. I think it's just human nature to want to tell people about a negative experience with a product more than it is to talk about a positive one. Personally, I don't believe the majority of JTV's have been faulty or returned. I don't believe the product would still be in production if that were case. What motivation would Line 6 have to keep a product on the market for four years that was actually losing money in the way of returns and warranty repairs?

 

I too am not trying to negate anyone's experience. I also wouldn't recommend to buy or not buy a product. It's a decisions they have to make on their own. My recommendation is always to try the product for yourself before buying it, and if you can't do that to go with someplace that has a good return policy.


  • 0
Time is a train
Makes the future the past
Leaves you standing in the station
Your face pressed up against the glass

 


#61 TheRealZap

TheRealZap

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 15516 posts
  • LocationClemmons, NC USA

Posted 31 December 2013 - 06:58 AM

You're WRONG. <--- that's a period. end debate.

 

in principle you are right with your arguments. you don´t have to use 2.0. But .... it is not an alleged inferiority but a proven inferiority, test it or ask neutral users.

 

you can't prove something subjective. it's impossible, as its a matter of taste.


  • 0

#62 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 31 December 2013 - 10:18 AM

 I didn't call anyone a complainer; that was your word (I hope you won't referring to yourself).

 

 

I was expressing dissatisfaction or annoyance about a state of affairs, i.e. complaining.

 

One who complains is a complainer. I did not realize that was a bad word, my apologies if I have offended anyone. If there is a better word for someone who buys a poorly designed/shoddily manufactured product and complains about it please let me know and I will try to remember to use it in the future. "Negative reviewer" maybe?

 

I  told him that he shouldn't extrapolate from this audience to the general population of JTV owners, and assume he would have problems.

 

Is there some better place to get opinions/reviews on JTVs? Do you have real information on the opinions and experiences of "the general population of JTV owners" who do not post here?

 

The OP was asking for a recommendation, is there a better place for him to go to get one?

 


In fact I didn't give him any buy/don't buy JTV advice. You are doing that.

 

Yep. That is what he asked for and I am happy to give it to him. And if the neck and bridge and tuning limitations on my JTV didn't render it useless I would be saying something more like "Forget those older Variaxes with their corrosion/failure prone piezos, buy a JTV!!! Best Guitar EVAR!!!"

 

 

I am simply advising him on how to interpret/weigh the information and advice he is getting here, including yours and mine.

 

Not the advice he was asking for. I am interested to know where you might suggest he go for more "fair and balanced" reviews of the JTV. Where can he communicate with the hordes of satisfied JTV owners, assuming they exist?

 

I might have been one of those often referred to "silent and satisfied" owners as far as anyone here was concerned if my JTV had only one or two major problems requiring workarounds or limiting playability, I do wonder how many people bought a JTV with one or two issues and put up with them or worked around them because the JTV is such a great guitar in other respects - other than the neck issue and the bridge issue and the tuning issue I DO think the JTV is a great guitar, the same way I thought the original Variax was a great guitar in spite of its physical unattractiveness.


  • 0

#63 oleus

oleus

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 47 posts

Posted 31 December 2013 - 11:20 AM

i really appreciate everyone's input.

 

i'm thinking a JTV from a reputable retailer who accepts returns (Musicians Friend, etc) will probably be the way to go.

 

As much as i like the look and reviews of the 700, i can't afford taking a crapshoot on a used item I can't return that might need piezos at the drop of a hat.


  • 0

#64 Charlie_Watt

Charlie_Watt

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1159 posts

Posted 31 December 2013 - 12:20 PM

I bought my JTV69S from Sweetwater.  IT came in perfect condition and I could have returned it if I was not satisfied.  That is what I recommend unless you can buy one from a retail store that you can try before you buy.  My neck is perfect and the strings are perfectly centered on it.  No problems with them falling off.  Fretwork is as good as any other guitar I own including my American Strat and my Les Paul.  Finish is flawless and everything works as it should.  I expect that is the norm rather than the exception.  I agree that it's not a good idea to buy a used older Variax unless you can get a killer deal and the option to return it if you are not happy with it.  If you have to have Line6 work on it it will be very expensive.  With a new JTV you have a decent warrantee and the option to return it.  No matter what brand of guitar you buy not all of them are equal.


  • 0

#65 broker2

broker2

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 74 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 06:12 AM

I have had the jtv for 2 yrs. now and have had no problems,if you want one buy it from sweetwater, they will take care of you.


  • 0

#66 alsithi

alsithi

    Iknowathingortwo

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 101 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 08:48 AM

My 300 was my main gigging guitar for over a year and other than replacing the machine heads was completely trouble-free. I only replaced it with a JTV69 because I came into some cash and wanted a guitar with a whammy bar! Soundwise the 69 is superior but as a standalone model the 300 sounded great anyway.


  • 0

#67 clay-man

clay-man

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 870 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 10:54 AM

Johnny, about the tuning problems. My 600 has tuning problems like crazy, at least when using the tremolo. Otherwise, if I stretch the strings hard, it's in tune for about the whole day.

 

Did you have a 700? I wonder how much better the build quality is from a 700 to a 600.


  • 0

For a minute there, I lost myself.

Radiohead_bear-728286%5B1%5D.png 


#68 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 12:49 PM

Johnny, about the tuning problems. My 600 has tuning problems like crazy, at least when using the tremolo. Otherwise, if I stretch the strings hard, it's in tune for about the whole day.

 

Did you have a 700? I wonder how much better the build quality is from a 700 to a 600.

 

The tuning problems I mentioned are not "normal" tuning problems.

 

I have always tuned my Variaxes down one full step to D, never experienced any problem.

 

Try this on a JTV and the modeling goes haywire - there are a few threads in these forums discussing this problem.

 

Line 6's official word is the JTV is calibrated to work properly only when tuned to standard E tuning.

 

I can work around this limitation by tuning my JTV normally and using the alt tuning function to drop the tuning a full step but it sounds pitch shifted, nowhere near as good as simply tuning my older Variax down to D.

 

Once tuned my JTV holds its tuning as well as any other guitar.

 

I have never owned a Variax 600, I did have a 300, a 500 and a 700 and can tell you the quality of the 700 was much higher than the 300 and a good deal nicer than the 500.

 

My understanding is the 600 is better than the 300 but not as nice as the 700.

 

My 700 was a well made guitar and I had no real problem with it other than the fact that I found it ugly to look at - great neck, stayed in tune well, etc.

 

If set up properly your 600 should stay in tune as well as any Strat, even when using the tremolo - consider replacing the nut with a graphite version, the nut on my 300 was terrible and I believe the 600 nut is the same. You might also try searching Google for tips on keeping a Strat style guitar in tune, there are lots of things that can be done.


  • 2

#69 radatats

radatats

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 988 posts
  • LocationOrange County, NY

Posted 01 January 2014 - 01:35 PM

Johnny, did you ever finish that White Falcon conversion?  How hard a job was that?  I really like that idea for doing a conversion with a hollow body type guitar...


  • 0

Picture4.png


#70 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 03:13 PM

Johnny, did you ever finish that White Falcon conversion?  How hard a job was that?  I really like that idea for doing a conversion with a hollow body type guitar...

 

It still looks like it did in the pics I posted.

 

It is fully functional and I have used it at a couple of shows the way it is now.

 

It was a super easy transplant because I just put all of the Variax parts into a small project box and stuck that inside the body - there is no access to the Variax knobs or switching on that one, all changes in modeling, pickup selection and tone are performed by my HD500.

 

After I put the red sparkle binding on the Falcon I realized it looked too xmas-ey , like a candy cane :lol:  this really annoyed me (I despise xmas) and I decided I would paint it a different color and change the color of the binding, got distracted with a zillion other projects and never got around to repainting it so it stays as is for a while.

 

I guess if I put the original pickups back in in it would be "finished", but I want to put some cool DeArmond pickups in and I will have to make mounts for them to work and that makes yet another project I may never have time to complete - who knows if I will ever really finish it...

 

My Telecaster Vax transplant plays much better than the Falcon copy and is still the Variax I use most often, it probably will remain so until I do the neck and bridge swap on my JTV.

 

For the record, I still have high hopes for the JTV, I am just disappointed and frustrated that I am going to have to do so much work and spend so much money to make it useable. I am sure after I get the JTV playable I will be back to singing the praises of L6 gear and being called a fanboy again :)


  • 0

#71 clay-man

clay-man

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 870 posts

Posted 01 January 2014 - 09:42 PM

The tuning problems I mentioned are not "normal" tuning problems.

 

I have always tuned my Variaxes down one full step to D, never experienced any problem.

 

Try this on a JTV and the modeling goes haywire - there are a few threads in these forums discussing this problem.

 

Line 6's official word is the JTV is calibrated to work properly only when tuned to standard E tuning.

 

I can work around this limitation by tuning my JTV normally and using the alt tuning function to drop the tuning a full step but it sounds pitch shifted, nowhere near as good as simply tuning my older Variax down to D.

 

Once tuned my JTV holds its tuning as well as any other guitar.

 

I have never owned a Variax 600, I did have a 300, a 500 and a 700 and can tell you the quality of the 700 was much higher than the 300 and a good deal nicer than the 500.

 

My understanding is the 600 is better than the 300 but not as nice as the 700.

 

My 700 was a well made guitar and I had no real problem with it other than the fact that I found it ugly to look at - great neck, stayed in tune well, etc.

 

If set up properly your 600 should stay in tune as well as any Strat, even when using the tremolo - consider replacing the nut with a graphite version, the nut on my 300 was terrible and I believe the 600 nut is the same. You might also try searching Google for tips on keeping a Strat style guitar in tune, there are lots of things that can be done.

 

Thanks for the info! I agree that the nut sucks. I am planning to replace it with a graphtech TUSQ. 

I also have a problem making the tremolo go back in tune if I make it float. It is especially bad if I do a divebomb and then pull it up, it will go sharp.

 

I believe I could fix that with a Maglok, but it's annoying to have to spend money just to fix the trem system.

 

Also, about tuning physically down, I know that the guitarist of Thrice used a transplanted Variax in D standard and it worked well.

JTV must have slightly tweaked modeling or pitch shifting, or perhaps the piezos won't allow you to tune down very well.

 

When I try to tune down from E standard, the strings get quieter because there's not enough tension against the piezos.


  • 0

For a minute there, I lost myself.

Radiohead_bear-728286%5B1%5D.png 


#72 bob1474

bob1474

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 47 posts

Posted 02 January 2014 - 04:05 AM

Opinion time ?  I work on, play and have ALL of the Variax line, including a JTV69. Most of the time I use my 700 acoustic for "acoustic" gigs, (Duh) and I keep going back to my 600 for electric stuff, even over my 700 electric,( like a poster earlier, I guess i'm just a Strat guy at heart.) which still includes a lot of acoustic patches. Picked up a JTV69 looking for a leap forward. Fairly disappointed with the new HD acoustic models, and I've really tried to like them, even compared recordings under the same circumstances. Perhaps I'm not ready yet to hear the changes, but in any case,they are not as pleasing to my ears as the old models, even after tweaking with workbench. Had a friend put a 600 neck on his JTV with great playability results, but still- the acoustic models just are hard to pin down. Will keep trying because i want to like it, but in the end maybe Line 6 should offer a "retro" batch of models for us weird people who were and are happy with what they accomplished earlier.Even after rolling back from HD no real joy.. Street price of the JTV should tell them they need to do something!! Everything is subject to personal preference.

To add to the 600 tuning problems metioned. I put locking tuners on mine, use a touch of nut sauce (great stuff) on the string contact points. I use light (10g) strings and can trem till the cows come home without tuning problems. I keep the trem "floating" parrallel to the guitar body, gives me about half a step up, and seems to be,after experimenting, the best location. Also keep the string height adjustment close to the "bottom" as the angle of the strings is decreased. I Use 3 springs (stock). Also replaced stock string "tree" with roller type, but really have no opinion on wether that affected anything, as it stayed in tune before that change.  My 700 electric, with the use of nut sauce and the above mentioned adjustments (except the tuners, the stock Gotoh tuners seem to be fine) reacts the same way. Same with the JTV69- now if only the models...........


  • 1

#73 johnnyayyy

johnnyayyy

    Power User

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1375 posts

Posted 02 January 2014 - 08:10 AM

 

Even after rolling back from HD no real joy.

 

As I understand it, if you roll the firmware back to the earliest version the JTV (including the acoustic models) will sound the same as the older Variaxes.

 

I don't remember which JTV firmware revision changed the sound of the acoustics and am too exhausted to look it up, I am sure someone here will chime in with this info.

 

If this doesn't make your JTV sound like the old Variax you may have other issues.


  • 0

#74 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 02 January 2014 - 08:35 AM

....

I don't remember which JTV firmware revision changed the sound of the acoustics and am too exhausted to look it up, I am sure someone here will chime in with this info.

 

....

 

The revised acoustic modeling was introduced in v1.8


  • 0

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#75 bob1474

bob1474

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 47 posts

Posted 02 January 2014 - 12:22 PM

Thanks for the input on the roll back-haven't rolled back past 1.8,  but might give it a shot sometime this week. to see what happens.


  • 0

#76 dspellman

dspellman

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 60 posts

Posted 04 January 2014 - 05:26 PM

since i'm not big into alternate tunings and don't really need a guitar with pickups (have some good ones already) - is the advancement in processing in the JTVs a huge jump over the older Variax models?

 

I liked the idea of being able to overwrite ALL of the banks on the old Variax models, while still being able to re-access the original untouched model banks.

 

Excellent -- you can buy my older Variax 500.


  • 0

#77 dspellman

dspellman

    Just Startin'

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 60 posts

Posted 04 January 2014 - 05:53 PM

Geez -- after a read of this thread, I'm almost afraid to post.

I've got a JTV 89F.  Picked it up in early November. Special ordered, had to wait for it, probably because most of the local GCs don't carry the 89 OR the 89F (this seems to be the red-haired stepchild of the bunch) and likely because the new batch of 89Fs hadn't yet been infused with version 2.0 yet. I got the guitar new in the box (opened it right there at GC) in tune and with a great low-action setup.

 

I'd originally assumed I'd get the 59 (since I have a lot of LP-style guitars), but it didn't come with a Floyd. I assumed that the 89 was just there for the metal folks, so I'd ignored it. But when the 89F arrived, I realized that it did a LOT of things the 59 didn't. Access to upper frets (and 24 of them), check. Jumbo frets and a 16" radius -- awesome. NON-baseball-bat neck, just slightly wider than normal (by feel, not by measurement), perfect. Five way (like it better than the hashed-up three-way on the 59), slightly hot pickups, satin finished neck, mahogany body, 25.5" scale. All good. And the Graphtech Floyd. On the money. And they flipped the headstock right side up. 

 

The cons? Metal colors -- black and reddish-black ("blood red" -- cheesy). The alternate tunings lost some of the good ones and subbed in extra down-tunings. Ack. The Line 6 assumption is that this guitar is ONLY good for metal. Stupid assumption. All those models of other guitars vs. narrow-minded (I'm sorry -- "focused?") marketing people. Stupid stupid stupid.

 

Guitar is flawless. No fret issues (usually the first thing I find), no finish issues. no electronic issues. Obviously they're setting me up for the neck to pop off the body on a gig.

 

Honestly, I've played all of the others (from the time when Rich Renken was showing me the production prototypes of the original JTVs way back when).

 

Good guitars.

 

But this may be the best of the bunch.


  • 1

#78 radatats

radatats

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 988 posts
  • LocationOrange County, NY

Posted 04 January 2014 - 05:58 PM

Just to clarify, if I want to convert my own guitar to Variax, there is no difference in the electronics between the 300, 500, 600, 700?

 

and just to be sure, there are no alternate tunings available with the original Variax, right?


  • 0

Picture4.png


#79 silverhead

silverhead

    Uber Guru

  • Line 6 Expert
  • 11448 posts
  • LocationOttawa, Ontario, Canada

Posted 04 January 2014 - 07:03 PM

Correct - no difference in the electronics and modelling (except for the internal mounting/positioning of the components).

 

Alternate tunings ARE available using Variax Workbench (not the new Workbench HD product). However, the tunings are embedded in the stored model rather than available separately to be used with all stored models.


  • 0

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
.... John Lennon

 

 


#80 radatats

radatats

    Gear Head

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 988 posts
  • LocationOrange County, NY

Posted 04 January 2014 - 08:39 PM

'Thanks!  and I could program a POD patch to pull up the model and tuning along with the amp and FX settings too right? Very tempting...


  • 0

Picture4.png





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users