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Posts posted by Nos402

  1. In all the descriptions I read it says this amp had a Bass and a Treble control. Does that mean the "Low Mid" and "High Mid" controls are just extras added after the amp model?


    I really miss the very detailed model descriptions Line 6 used to provide about the history and use of the models as well as things like "This amp only had these controls so the rest are just post-amp extras. If you're looking for accuracy leave those on 5 and just adjust the ones that were on the original amp." I loved reading all the descriptions and details!

  2. On 3/16/2023 at 5:02 PM, datacommando said:



    Why should it be baffling?

    The Channel Volume has no bearing on the tone of the amp model. The Master Volume does change the sound.


    Here’s another quote from Ben Adrian, when he was asked “Why all those extra knobs?” - Ben’s the guy who creates these amp models:-

    “If an amp has a small number of knobs, then we will invent the knobs in a way that makes the most sense to us. First, let me say that the Channel Volume (ChVol) knob is ALWAYS a flat response, post amp model level control. This is like a fader on a console. It's in the amp model, but it's not tied to the tonality of the amp model. It's how I level different presets so that they play well together.“


    Hope this helps/makes sense.



    I get that but why the inconsistency? For example as seen in the images, on the Woody Blue it's Ch Vol then Master but on the Agua 51 it's Master then Ch Vol.



  3. On 3/16/2023 at 4:43 PM, datacommando said:



    This is copied from the old Helix Help WordPress site by “JSHIMKOSKI”


    The Channel Volume as equivalent to a channel strip on a mixing console. It simply turns up or down the overall volume of the amp. It does not effect the tone.

    The Master Volume is essentially the master volume on the amp itself and therefore will effect tone by adding or decreasing dirt/grit.


    Hope this helps/makes sense.


    Yeah but what's baffling me is why it's usually Ch Vol > Master but on a few models it's Master > Ch Vol.

    • Confused 1
  4. On 3/16/2023 at 4:30 PM, Nos402 said:

    I've noticed that on all the other amps (I think) that the "Master" parameter comes AFTER the "Ch Vol" parameter but that on the Agua 51 it comes BEFORE the Ch Vol parameter. Is this intentional and has some actual logic or meaning or just a single inconsistency?

    EDIT: Nope this doesn't appear to be it as several of the models that DO have a Master Volume on the original amps are still Ch Vol > Master. So I'm not sure why a few of them are Master > Ch Vol.


    Just noticed the Del Sol 300 also orders them Master then Ch Vol. Is it maybe that if the Master comes BEFORE Ch Vol then the original amp had a master volume control but if Master come AFTER the Ch Vol then maybe the original did not have a master volume control? I'll have to do some research!

  5. I've noticed that on all the other amps (I think) that the "Master" parameter comes AFTER the "Ch Vol" parameter but that on the Agua 51 it comes BEFORE the Ch Vol parameter. Is this intentional and has some actual logic or meaning or just a single inconsistency?

  6. On 3/4/2023 at 2:55 AM, PierM said:

    In an electric guitar, the very first string points of contact are always much more important than body and neck.


    Nut, bridge saddles and tailpiece (when present) can really make the difference. A bad nut, (either too soft or too hard, or cut too deep ) can really suck away a ton of energy from string vibration, making the tone thin and muffled (I did miracles on few of my guitars just working on that area). Same for bad saddles


    Also quality of frets is important.


    This is valid for both mag and piezo.


    Said that, expecting a chunk neck or a chunk body, improving tone, is a very common mistake but I dont want to put my shoes into the tone wood can of worms...:)



    Yeah obviously, I was hoping that the new neck would NOT affect the tone! And maybe it's not, I'm just trying to figure out why my two Variaxes sound different and that was the biggest change I've made to my original!

  7. I have one of the original run of JTV-69. Over the years I had the body custom painted. I recently had to replace the entire PCB board/knob assembly to finally fix a volume pot with scratchyness and dead spots.


    I also put a really nice $750 custom Warmoth neck on it. Tonight I was comparing to my Variax Limited Amethyst (basically a Variax Standard in a limited color) model and noticed that I thought that my Standard sounded better. Naturally this was disappointing. The new neck on my JTV is much thicker so I was surprised that my JTV sounded a little thinner. Of course it could also be many other things, thus why I'm asking the question. I have 2 piezo saddles on order because the tope two strings (the B string in particular) sound weaker and duller than they should compared to the rest and compared to the mags so that's kind of what I was troubleshooting when I noticed my Standard seemed to sound fuller and better.


    Is the neck a likely culprit? It's a big beefy neck with an ebony fretboard and stainless frets and a compound radius, if any of that makes any difference.

  8. I just watched a youtube vid of someone who had a "dull" D and replaced the piezo and it fixed it. I may have to look into it. I hate that I haven't had the best experiences with my "authorized service center" so I don't have a lot of trust that they really know Variaxes well.


    In the meantime, I went into workbench and took the lowest 4 strings down by 3bB and that at least seems to have things sounding even for the moment. I just wonder how much that is going to affect my sound related to the Helix presets I have set up, specifically in regards to the amount of gain. Like is that small enough that it won't matter much, or maybe a formerly "crunchy" patch will not have quite as much crunch any more? 

  9. Lately I've noticed my top 2 strings (B and high E) seem lower volume than all the rest. I messed with it today in Workbench and I had to take all the other strings down 3dB to make it all sound good again. I've been playing this guitar as my #1 since 2012 and this is definitely a fairly recent development. Any ideas on what it could be or things I can try? 

  10. On 9/29/2022 at 1:57 PM, cruisinon2 said:

    Probably not be the answer you're looking for, and obviously it'll cost you a few bucks, but with the world being in the state that it's in, you'd probably have more luck buying a used Variax and cannibalizing it for the volume pot than waiting around for some service center to finally get it back in stock. If it's already been 3 months, I'll bet hard cash that you'll wait another 3, if not longer. It's an ultra-specific part for a very niche product... and a rapidly aging niche product at that...I guarantee the producing/ distributing Variax-specific volume pots is not high on anybody's to-do list.


    At least then you'd have one working guitar... then if the rest of the planet ever gets it's $h*t together again, you'll eventually get your part, and then you'd have your guitar, and a functioning spare for the next time something craps outs. Just my 2 cents...


    This is exactly what I'm worried about and why I'm looking into other options like wiring in a regular pot. I LOVE my JTV-69 but it's already considered an "old" product at this point, and volume pots will always eventually need replacing. It sucks having my main #1 guitar out of commission simply because of a faulty pot that I can't replace and as you mentioned, it's only going to get worse as the years pass being such a specific part. I had actually thought about searching for a used JTV but I just got a Variax Limited Amethyst as my backup (and current since it's the only one working). I've used Varaxes since the very first one and I have no desire to go back to regular guitars. I have a custom finish on my JTV as well as a very expensive custom Warmoth neck, so I'd really like to keep it functioning as opposed to just getting a new one! Guitars aren't disposable!


    In short, I agree with your sentiments, and it's a shame that this is such a pain. I love my Variaxes!

  11. Firstly, I know the official Line 6 response is "DO NOT MODIFY YOUR INSTRUMENT. WE DO NOT SUPPORT THIS."


    But my JTV-69 has been in the shop now for 3 months because they can't find a replacement volume pot (this is an official authorized Line 6 service center). This is my #1 guitar and I'm missing it! This is also the second time I've needed a volume pot replacement. Are there any "unofficial" solutions? I know it's a proprietary "ganged" pot with different tapers for magnetics and modeling, but I need a working guitar. Does anyone know what would happen if someone just soldered in a regular volume pot or something? 


    Strangely I noticed today that the dead spots, drop outs and crackles happen only when rolling DOWN in modeling mode and only when rolling UP in magnetics mode. Also, for the sake of this thought experiment, I only use modeling mode. I never use the mags.


    I just want my main guitar back in working order!

  12. My JTV-69 has been in the shop for over 2 months awaiting a new volume knob. This is an authorized Line 6 repair shop and I spoke to the tech today who said they have just not been able to find a JTV volume knob replacement anywhere. They thought they had found one but then were sent the wrong knob. This greatly worries me about the future of my guitar as this is the second time I've replaced it and I'm sure won't be the last as volume knobs are probably the most replaced part on an electric guitar.


    I am curious what the effects would be if someone just wired up a regular volume pot instead of the much more complicated JTV post on a PCB board.

  13. I just acquired a Variax Limited Amethyst as my new backup Variax (my main is a JTV-69) and I find as with all strat style screw in trem arms that I can't stand how wobbly and loose it is.  I know on Strats they recommend using the little springs that go in the whole, but on this guitar the trem hole goes all the way through so the spring would just fall out I imagine.


    I've also read tons of folks using plumber's tape but I tried that and found that as soon as I unscrewed the bar again, it was all gone, and I have to unscrew the bar to put it in my gig bag and really don't want to apply tape every time I play. 


    I had heard good things about the Callaham replacement blocks, but of course this one has the little circuit board on thee trem block so that seems out as well.


    Any other ideas? I'm at a loss here! Luckily I don't use the trem much, but when I want to, man I HATE those screw in arms.

  14. So I took a chance on a third party Variax battery that was cheaper and also has a slightly higher capacity. I knew it was possibly a gamble, but It SEEMS to work fine. One quirk is that while normally charged batteries get the slow blinking light (like my other original Variax battery), this one gets the fast blinking "faulty battery" light. 


    Is it possible that it's just because it's not an official Line 6 battery? I've only used it once so far, but when inserted it shows 4 dots and seems to have a normal duration I think (though I've never tried going more than one gig on a single charge yet).

  15. 2 hours ago, pianoguyy said:

    A used JBL Eon can be had cheap (get two for stereo). And, there are so many models, you have a wide array of options to choose from.  


    But also, since an external speaker system is not your primary device - I would continue to design your tone as you currently do. And just run a cheap device as needed

    Even when using a device, you can still run direct which means your tone is still 'your tone'. All the device will do is provide on-stage monitoring. Do you need your tone to be 100% accurate when it is only for you to hear yourself? To me, that means you don't even need a good device; just something to provide enough volume. 

    So, check your local Craigslist type place and pick up a cheap bass amp. Or keyboard amp (I have a Peavey KB/A 100). The world is your oyster. 


    I think this mails it pretty good for me. I went ahead and ordered a QSC K10.2 but yeah, I'm not super picky about the on stage sound as I will usually be running direct, and will feed it direct to the PA. Never the less I do like to have good gear so after a ton of researching and discussing the QSC is what I settled on as it seems pretty universally loved.

  16. 5 hours ago, zappazapper said:

    I wouldn't be so quick to assume that the Spider can't be a viable option for bass, or anything really. It's got a full-range speaker system. I'd start with trying to dial something in with that before spending money unnecessarily.


    The only reason I wrote it off was that at one point I asked support if it was okay to use the Spider for Bass and they said they wouldn't recommend it above bedroom levels.

  17. So I play a Variax into a Helix. In some bands I play bass and sometimes Keys as well.


    Usually I run my Helix direct and use in-ears. 


    Occasionally I play with bands who don't want to have anything in their monitors that they don't absolutely need so they prefer some stage amps. 


    Because of this I've considered some FRFR options. However since this isn't something I do often I don't really want to buy some of the more expensive options which are supposedly better. I've been considering the Alto TS312 which a buddy of mine swears by but in the videos I've watched it seems super bass heavy to me (some seem to have had better luck with the TS310 but I wonder if that would that be adequate for bass). My though is that if I get a FRFR I can use for guitar, bass, or keys when necessary.


    Ah, but I also have a Spider V 120 as a backup rig and in my tests, running my Helix into that with no amp/cab selected on the Spider seems to do a pretty good job for guitar. I don't think they were built to handle bass though. So since I already have a guitar "amp" option for my Helix, I *could* instead just get  a small bass combo. Several friends recommend something in the Fender Rumble series, and one friend says used Carvin MB15s are great bang for the buck as they are discontinued. 


    Opinions? 1. get a  FRFR for bass, guitar and keys. 2. Use the Spider for guitar and get a small bass combo for bass. Thanks!

  18. On 7/27/2021 at 11:07 AM, psarkissian said:

    The differences would be spelled out in the modeling gallery list.



    There's not a lot of details in there as to exactly WHAT the differences are. That's the first place I looked. I wish I could remember which iteration specifically talked about a Goldtop. I'm guessing it was a previous firmware version, or maybe one of my previous Variaxes (original, and then later 700).



  19. 5 hours ago, cruisinon2 said:


    There's no objective truth to be found here...


    A quick stroll through the forums will reveal 10+ years worth of discussions, arguments, and emphatic proclamations about the differences between this model, that model, and the other one over there. The only certainty is that one man's "night and day difference" is another's "sounds the same to me". My "authentic Strat reproduction" might be your "Are you kidding? It sounds like a mud-covered banjo". In the end, what your ears tell you is all that matters, not what mine are telling me...and neither of us is "right" or "wrong".


    The simple fact is that we're not all blessed with the same ability to make subtle distinctions between different sounds... if we could, we'd all be award winning producers, engineers, or sought-after studio musicians playing on hit after hit. To Joe Average,  an electric guitar is an electric guitar. Blindfolded, most couldn't tell a Les Paul from a Tele, nevermind two slightly different LP's with the same pickups... and even amongst other guitar players, abilities vary. What you hear is what you hear, and either you'll agree with someone else's subjective assessment, or you won't... in the end all that really matters is whether or not you like what you hear. Dial them up, and decide...


    I guess I meant from a more objective/technical perspective. Like "Oh well the Special used a different wood from the standard" or such. Just trying to figure out the differences not from a subjective sonic viewpoint but an objective technical perspective. 


    Like Is Lester 2 basically the SAME guitar as Lester 1 but with different pickups or is it a different guitar? I know at one point in Variax software there was a goldtop but I don't see that mentioned in the manual any more.

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