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  1. What I’ve found over a couple of years of messing with a Variax is that the global string settings can make a big difference in all the models. When full up (the default) the piezos seem to compress and “plink” more. I play with the global string levels until each string is balanced and doesn’t compress as much on the attack. This may require bringing the level of the models up a touch up to compensate. I think of it as setting the input gain on a mixer. I wish there was a way in Workbench to balance the raw piezo levels but I feel like we’re pretty much stuck with what we have with this tech. On my current Variax (a JTV69S) I have the low E and A cut back more than the others and everything balances out nicely. Also a good setup where the strings ring true seems to be essential to getting the most out of the modeling, even if that requires a little higher action than you’d typically use. You can get away with a few buzzes and rattles with magnetic pickups but the piezo is going to reproduce those artifacts, which can make the models sound odd.
  2. played around with Workbench some today. What I'm hearing seems to be coming mostly from the body model. If I use the same pickup model on a different body the difference isn't as noticeable. Some pickups make it worse, some are better. So for now I'm going to say it's probably something inherent in the modeling itself. I just find it odd that the model would vary as much as it does from one string to another, because I've never heard a guitar do that unless something was wrong with it. :)
  3. Thanks for the reply! When you changed out the piezos were they not working or did they just have an odd sound?
  4. I’ve played with the global string settings a bit, but turning the low E down didn’t really change the way it sounds, it just made it louder or quieter. Which model do do you use when balancing the global volume? The reason I ask is that there seem to be string balance issues in the models too, so it would seem to me that you’d almost have to be able to output the raw piezo to do this effectively, and that’s not an option. im going to try to upload a clip of the sound I’m hearing. It’s most noticeable on the Jazzbox model, and seems to happen no matter which pickups I select on that body model. I was showing the issue to one of my buddy’s and he said he feels like he’s hearing a difference on the low E on other models too, but not as bad. It’s like all the other strings have the same tone within a model, then the low E string sounds noticeably different. I’ve tried different brands of strings and it doesn’t change this, but I haven’t tried different gauges. I dont one think it’s a setup issue, because the guitar sets up and plays great acoustically, with not noticeable buzzes or rattles. if you could listen to the stock Jazzbox model, particularly on the neck pickup, and see if yours does the same thing that would help. If they all do this then I’ll just chalk it up to a flaw in the modeling, but if not I want to get mine fixed. A piezo that that isn’t functioning properly would make sense if I do have an issue.
  5. Thread died I guess. Anyone willing to try the Jazzbox setting on their Variax for me and see if the low E string sounds brighter and clearer than the rest of the strings on that model?
  6. The thing is Jazzbox in particular sounds nice and warm as you’d expect on all strings except the low E, but the low E sounds different, almost like you switched to a model of an acoustic guitar compared to the other 5 strings. What I’m trying to determine is if this is just something in the modeling and they all do this or if there is something that needs to be addressed on my guitar.
  7. Right, this isn’t a difference between models, it’s a difference in tone from string to string within the same model. I do find that there are some models where it gets worse, and some models where it’s not as bad. I thought the famous plink issue was more in the note attack from palm muting? This is something that I’m hearing only on the low E and it’s more of a tone issue, it can hear it no matter how hard or lightly I play the note. And I don’t think it’s a fret/setup type thing, because acoustically there is no rattle of buzz in the setup. I do guitar and amp tech work for a living including warranty work for several companies so I feel like I have the setup dialed in just fine in the guitar.
  8. I’ve got a JTV-59 that I bought new a couple of months back. According to the serial number it was built in 2017. Build, setup, everything is awesome on it, no issues at all. But in getting to know it I’ve noticed something and I need to find out if what I’m hearing is normal or an issue with my guitar. On a few of the models the overall tone tone is very consistent from string to string until I get to the low E string, then the low E sounds like you turned the tone control from 5 to wide open. The low E tone is thinner and brighter compared to the other strings. It is most noticeable on clean sounds, and isnt as bad when I run it into a gained up amp. It doesn’t sound like piezo quack, and it doesnt seem to be string balance either as it doesn’t change if I turn the E down in the preset or global string setting, it’s the same sound just quieter. This seems to be worst on the Jazzbox and Semi models, and isn’t really noticeable on the Lester and JTV69 models. I’ve played with Workbench and it seems to get worse with certain bodies and or pickup models. Let me say I love my Variax other than this issue, and it would be pretty much perfect otherwise. So is this his normal or something weird (funky low E piezo maybe?) on my particular JTV?
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