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andrewthouston

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About andrewthouston

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  1. andrewthouston

    Splitting piezo string outputs

    Difficult on the electrical engineering side or the physical hookup side? Thx!!!
  2. andrewthouston

    Splitting piezo string outputs

    Well, I think more accurately that I'm simply hoping to tap into access to the piezo without going thru the Variax. Which I'm seeing is nothing new here. Only difference is that in this case I'm only looking for 2 strings, rather than all 6. Although having all of them available would certainly not be an issue, if there's separate level control on each string.
  3. andrewthouston

    Splitting piezo string outputs

    Thx for replies! They'd be sent to a 2nd preamp (such as the ghost acousti phonic), ouput from the guitar (separately from the Variax output), and sent to separate mfx and/or amp. Like in my example, I want to play x32010, all 5 notes go to the Variax as usual. But the bass C also goes to the 2nd output, into an octave divider, and bass amp. Maybe not unlike how a condensor needs a charge to function? If the piezo is being split to the Variax, and another preamp (like acousti phonic), it should be getting the charge from both, no? If there's a place on the Variax board to tap after the preamp, that may be handy. But also means I'd need to find a way to mix 5 and 6 together before output. (I'm guessing just shorting them together isn't the way to go.) Whereas with using the 2nd preamp like acousti phonic, for whatever strings I feed into it, all the output gets mixed. And you still have the separate gain controls, etc.
  4. andrewthouston

    Warmoth neck for JTV69

    Also, just to give a shout out (as a happy customer) for the necks by USA Custom Guitars. Top quality, and their "closeouts" (ones put up for sale because the person who ordered it flaked?) can be some pretty screaming deals. So they sell in days, but there's always new ones coming up. By default, they don't drill their necks for mounting bolts, nor do they finish them, or install a nut. (They do offer finishing separately.) But to me it's smart, because it means you can get it done however you like. Plus, the neck can be fitted exactly to the specific guitar. And the best nut is always custom cut to the player's request (for material, string size, height and placement). Sure, "plug and play" neck is nice, but unlikely to give you the best (for any given individual) results. Sa-weet! Love me some P-Rails! Putting them on a Variax, because you can never have complicated enough wiring, right? Have you tried them with the bridge pup in reverse? I like the single-coil sound a little better, but the trade-off of course is the weaker output.
  5. Yes, but this is actually your ear's fault. If you intentionally make a headphone that measured flat, in the same way a good loudspeaker does, it would sound terrible! Why? Because your ear doesn't respond to a sound being fed directly into your ear in the same way it does to a sound in a natural acoustic space. It's a little like (trying to think of a good analogy) viewing a work of art (say, a painting) with your nose 3" away from it. Your eyes can pick up maybe 20% of the image extremely clearly, but the other 80% is quite fuzzy, if not gone. In audio, that 20% could represent the upper-mid freqs (that we're extremely sensitive to), and the other 80% everything else. But if you have a need to view the art at 3", it certainly can be done: you shrink it down to the size of a phone screen. This is roughly what headphones have to do. Your ears and eyes were designed to hear and see things in natural space. They can also go beyond that, but the "source output" needs to be adjusted accordingly.
  6. Back to the topic at hand... Yes, focus on one thing at a time. Your amp may be the weakest link in the chain (in this application), but first thing is to isolate the elements and make sure you're getting a good signal to it (garbage in, garbage out). Set the Helix to bypass, and run it into a set of headphones or home stereo or monitors that you're familiar with. Focus on getting the best possible raw sound out of the guitar first. See how adjustments to your playing style and the guitar itself (I hear GHS White Bronze strings are very good) affect the sound. Kind of like if you go to shop for a new acoustic. Typically you'll audition how they sound acoustically first, then out the pickup (into a reasonably accurate monitoring system), and then maybe plugged into a stage amp or pa. In this case, that first step doesn't really apply, so you'd want to start at the second step. But not the 3rd!
  7. ...set to Twin Reverb, and their "Strat" set to Byrdland, getting ready to jam on some Stranglehold. Not that I blame them. Modern tech may make it the most sensible solution that everyone in the band play thru the same speakers and wear IEMs. But that's hardly very rock and roll, is it? Because "full range" already implies (the desire for the capability to reproduce) flat response, by default. Does it mean if you could give people a DC-to-RF, +/- 0.01db system, they'd never reach for the eq? Of course not. They'd still want to add +10 below 100 for pop/rap, and whatever other eq curves their ipod tells them is appropriate for a given genre of music. But it's still a "flat response" system, even if it's not being used as such. But since I referenced it, here's Kemper's post, just fyr: I think FRFR is the strangest term in our business, and a bit misleading. It pretends that FRFR is something special. But FRFR is EVERY speaker exept guitar speakers. Your stereo at home, your iPod earplugs, your car radio and the biggest festival PA are all FRFR. I would love to ban this word from our forum It is better described by regular broadband speakers or linear speakers. They all try to be perfect and non colouring. Some are bad, some are great. Sorry, don't mean to run it into the ground! Was just surprised to stumble across a new acronym, only to find out it's to represent something that's been around forever. So I wonder if it's largely coming from the guitar-modeling world (a new thing for me), as a convenient way to distinguish from guitar cabs? In which case, are there also "FR, non-FR" speakers?
  8. andrewthouston

    Splitting piezo string outputs

    But is it as simple as connecting a piezo's output to the two systems in parallel? How will that affect the signal electrically? I believe it's often the case that when splitting an analog signal, each input is buffered so that the inputs can't see each other (as it sometimes causes feelings of jealously, insecurity, and general incongeniality).
  9. Wondering if this can be / has been done? I'd like to be able to tap the piezo outputs from the 5 and 6 strings, and send them over to a second preamp (not sure what the options out there are, so let's say, a Graphtec acousti-phonic), to be output independently from the Variax output. So for ex, if I play 3x0003 or x32010, all those notes would go to the Variax as usual. But the root note G or C would also be sent to the second output. This would then be sent to an octave divider (plus eq, etc). The result is a simple bass tone from that output, in addition to the full guitar chord (electric or acoustic tone) coming from the Variax output. Both outputs are then processed and amplified. Is this workable? How is the string separation anyway? Will the #4 D string be leaking into my bass output? (Or, #5 when I only want #6, since octave dividers of course don't take kindly to chords.) Originally, my idea was to build a custom 8-string, tuned to EAEADGBE, where the top six strings would be handled by a Variax, and the 2 low bass strings by "something else(?)". 2 short-scale bass strings on individual bridge saddles and pickups? A messy concept, even if you don't mind barring all those low notes. So I figured, if you're just going to duplicate the root of the chord for the bass, why not see if the electronics can do the heavy lifting? TIA!!!
  10. I'm new to the guitar modeling world, but considering one can now have a single instrument that sounds like just about anything, and an MFX that sounds like just about anything, why saddle it with a specific cab tone? (Hadn't seen "FRFR", so had to look it up. First thing I opened was on the Kemper board. Christoph Kemper seems to agree that "FRFR" is entirely redundant.)
  11. andrewthouston

    Anyone bought a Standard Variax lately?

    Good to know. I generally prefer the look of the Std (even with the four knob thing), but if they're not using the standard strat neck... Likely a deal killer right there. Warmoth gets the most mention, but USACG (which get my love) and MusiKraft are also premium. The factories generally keep a good stock (at very reasonable prices), or they'll build them exactly to your spec. Mighty Mite is good, but considered a step down overall. A lot of these can be had on ebay, or they may ship to UK as well. Although I'm sure there are good makers on your side as well.
  12. andrewthouston

    Which Variax is for me?

    Sorry, the 500 (and presumably all older models) benefits more from the Ghost upgrade? Or all models (incl JTV and Std) benefit equally? I'm in the market for my first one too, and it's a lot to digest. The prices on the older units are quite tempting (because yeah, who doesn't like the idea of a couple dozen very legit guitar sounds for $250), but at the same time, buying old hardware that relies on fully unsupported software may not be the best idea. Fully agreed. And to me personally, the less they look like the usual Big G- or F-branded fare, the better. A Strat has no business sounding like a Martin, so why keep the Strat visual paradigm (unless that's specifically what you're going for)?
  13. andrewthouston

    Variax 700 Electric Spares in the UK ?

    Killer guitar! Your own work? Really love the mix of media, and attention to detail (such as making the bridge and cover plates part of the artwork). And especially great for this guitar, with no mag pups to clutter things up.
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