These forums are read only, please use our new forums here.

Main :: Variax Guitars / Bass / Workbench



Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-08 18:47:50

I have a 600 and a 700.  Had a 500.   The guitars actually all sound fuller and louder with the the tone control rolled back a little. Turning it up all the way thins out the tone. Why is that??  (I read another similar post elsewhere, so it's not just me.)



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-09 17:05:29

No answers here yet....  I had someone on The Gear Page state that this has been a known software bug since the 500 came out and it's never been fixed.  Is that correct?



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by TheRealZap on 2013-01-09 17:09:56

first i've heard of it... if it's known... it's known to few....

never noticed honestly... but i have no desire to ever run the tone full open.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-09 17:33:20

It's been the same on my original 500 (long gone) and the 600 and 700 I picked up this year. 

Some of the comments on The Gear Page:

"That said, I URGE you guys to turn the tone on those JTVs down to 8 and see what happens. There's a "feature" (read: bug) where the brightest tone on these models is NOT at 10, but at about 8. Seriously, check it out. NOT intuitive, I know."

"It's a bug. It's been there since the original variaxs. I posted about it on line 6's forum once and they said it was a bug, but that they haven't been able to fix it. I'm sure it's related the physical engineering somehow or they could have just patched it"

"I just remembered something you guys might not know. The brightest part of the tone control on many of these models is NOT on 10, but more like 8.  Try turning down the tone on that strat and see if you like it better.  Sorry I forgot that till just now."



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-09 17:37:21

Looks like it was asked and left unanswered at least once before here by user Jclose:

Jul 26, 2009 1:08 PM

Calibrate tone knob

The tone knob on my variax 500 rolls back down at the full setting. The attached post discusses calibrating the selector knob and seems to include calibrating the tone knob as well. If this is the correct procedure to calibrate the tone knob? If so, must all knobs (volume, tone and selector) be calibrated or can I just do the tone knob? I'd prefer not to mess with the ones that are working fine.

http://http://line6.com/community/docs/DOC-3857#



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by clay-man on 2013-01-09 20:18:01

That's pretty crazy. I notice the bottom end thinning when going above 8 too. I just marked the knob to point at me when at 8 with a marker in case I want to roll back up quickly.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-09 20:30:48

TheRealZep:  Try it out and let us know what you find.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by clay-man on 2013-01-10 14:50:03

Huh? I did, I'm just agreeing that it sounds thinner above 8, like there's a bit of a bottom end roll off when you push it above 8, while 8 is full high end to full low end.

I just marked my tone knob to point at me when it's at 8 if I want to dial it in perfectly fast.

The only physical fix I can think about in theory is maybe dabbing some glue material on the knob and guitar to hit eachother when you're at 8 if you don't want to pass 8, but other than that you'll just have to deal with it, cause they're not going to update old variaxes anymore.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-10 21:00:10

That request was to The RealZep



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by deidelberg on 2013-01-14 19:10:56

Hello Line 6.  Anybody home???



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by TheRealZap on 2013-01-15 05:31:15

if you mean me, we aren't official line6... we are just knowledgable users. that's pretty much all that you'll find on the forums...

i do have a 600, i could test with, but haven't got alot of time at the moment.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by zapposharkfin on 2013-01-17 13:55:46

Happens with my (left hand) Variax 500 as well. I have always greeted it as a kind of a bonus, like a 'mid boost' with just a slight roll of the tone pot. It is easy to notice with the Les Paul model as well.

I have a feeling that this 'feature' came with one of the software updates, or at least I noticed it after one of the updates. If I had the energy, I could test it as I think I have the all the different firmaware versions on hard disk (most likely the can be found from L6 downloads too..



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by clay-man on 2013-01-17 17:21:09

I was thinking that it could be looked at as kind of a tonal shaping feature as well. While it kind of isn't traditional and is unintentional, it can be nice if you want to cut the lows a little bit.

The ONLY downside I can think of honestly is if you want to roll back to full tone really quickly. Like I said, the only thing you can probably do is obstruct it to not pass 8, but it's probably annoying to do.



Re: Operation of Variax 500, 600, 700 Tone Control. Sounds thin full up.
by frenchfries on 2013-01-23 22:13:36

Hi,

I have a Variax 500 as well and notice the same thing.

Here is my explanation:

from 5 to 10, the tone control of the Variax mimics a "variable cable capacitance".

It shifts down the virtual "resonant frequency" of your virtual pickups, making them beefier sounding, as if you were adding a length of cable (and the related capacitance) between a guitar with passive pickups and the input in which you plug it.

Explanations about resonant peaks of guitar pickups, if necessary (scroll down in order to see the graphs showing how capacitance changes the tone):

http://buildyourguitar.com/resources/lemme/

Acable is a kind of giant capacitor. Typically, each foot of cable adds 50picofarad to the circuit and lowers the resonant frequency of the pickup.

When the cable is long enough (around 6m / 1000 picofarad), the resonant peak of the pickup falls in the range enhanced by most guitar loudspeakers: the sound becomes creamier and apparently louder. IOW, the cable reacts as a passive mid enhancer...

Here is another link about it:

http://www.ovnilab.com/articles/cables.shtml

Thetone pot of the Variax mimics this effect, while a regular tone pot with a "real" pickup does nothing else than flattening the resonant peak from 10 to approximatively 3/10. You can see it here:

http://www.seymourduncan.com/blog/the-tone-garage/stop-ignoring-those-knobs/

FWIW:my answer is based on hundreds of actual tests with "real" magnetic pickups and on extensive experiments with my Variax (IOW: it's not a supposition; it's something sure IME).

HTH,

FF




The information above may not be current, and you should direct questions to the current forum or review the manual.