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brendonc

Possibly sending my third and final (ever) JTV back

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Just thought I'd reach out and get some input on this.

 

I had an 89 when they first came out and a 69 about a year later. Both had to go back due to issues with the guitars, like the 69 had a gash in the finish I believe. Plus the guitars felt so ultra cheap I just couldn't get past that at ~$1400, so I opted for refunds.

 

Well Musicians Friend has a sale now on the black JTV-69 at $650 after rebate so I thought I'd give the JTV another chance. I figured I could live with $650 knowing what the guitar would be like. 

 

I really love the idea of the Variax. I know what kind of awesome things these guitars can do, esp. when paired with a POD. I've had two Variax 700s, several PODs, L6 amps, and other devices. I even bought a new POD HD500X to use with this Variax. This is just my hobby but I love playing with this stuff, and always have.

 

I usually do my own setup, but decided to take this guitar to a proper luthier. I really want the guitar set up perfectly. Plus the nut looks like crap (pic attached) and I can get that replaced for just $35 more than a setup alone, so I'm considering having that done too.

 

But then I noticed a few other things which might be deal breakers. The neck has a ridge or bump towards the nut, but on closer inspection it actually looks like a hairline crack. It's hard to see, so I rubbed some graphite on it to accentuate the ridge and took a pic (attached).

 

I don't know if this is cosmetic or not. The crack goes up into the fretboard too, so this worries me.

 

Then when I was taking pics of this, I noticed some pretty disturbing levels of fret wear on several frets (pic attached). I've only played the guitar for a few hours now. I don't think this is due to my playing style because my other guitar, which is a $179 Squier Affinity Strat, doesn't show signs of wear like this.

 

So I'm a bit on the fence here. I could take it to a luthier to see what he thinks, but so far I'm up to about $205 of work that needs to be done, maybe more. I'm sure this probably qualifies for warranty work, especially the crack, but I'm not sure what to do at this point. I feel pretty damn disappointed and I'm not sure I'm willing to give the JTV or Line 6 another chance.

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Looks like a Crack, but hard to tell if it's deep, nut does look rough, I personally would send it back, I own two 59's and have to work the pickup selector switch to get any sound, the other has loose knobs on the guitar select, over all iam happy with the build, but I agree at 1400.00 that's unacceptable

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I'd give them one more chance under warranty. Definitely a crack. Sounds like one of the older ones has been sent your way. The earlier builds had some paint issues. Check the build date on the JTV (the serial number is partially a coded date). Send it back, and ask for a newer build date.

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I just noticed that's the "used" price, not the new price. That's your problem. People sent them back already because they were no good. Send it back, and don't buy a second-hand one at this stage since there are issues like this out there.

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I'd give them one more chance under warranty. Definitely a crack. Sounds like one of the older ones has been sent your way. The earlier builds had some paint issues. Check the build date on the JTV (the serial number is partially a coded date). Send it back, and ask for a newer build date.

 

I don't think this is an older one. I know there was a neck issue that had been fixed, so I checked the dates on the box and it looks like it was built earlier this year.

 

 

I just noticed that's the "used" price, not the new price. That's your problem. People sent them back already because they were no good. Send it back, and don't buy a second-hand one at this stage since there are issues like this out there.

 

Nope - this was brand new, factory sealed. The price is still $799 for the black 69 new (that's why I said $650 after rebate). That's why this is so discouraging.

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I would either send it back for another or send it Line6.  It's not right.  Check the serial number.  I bet it's an old one.

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Sounds like one of the older ones has been sent your way.

 

I would either send it back for another or send it Line6.  It's not right.  Check the serial number.  I bet it's an old one.

 

Just did some research - the serial starts with W1202, so it looks like it was made in Feb. of 2012? Is that still considered an older one?

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That is an older one. I bought a JTV-69 back in September with a W1308 from Sweetwater. Mine is pretty great. Had some minor setup issues that were easily fixed with some adjustment of the bridge height and saddles adjusted to the radius of the neck.

 

I will say that I am not a big fan of the neck, but I like the fact that you can replace the neck with one from Warmoth, Musikraft, Mighty Mite, etc.

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That is an older one. I bought a JTV-69 back in September with a W1308 from Sweetwater. Mine is pretty great. Had some minor setup issues that were easily fixed with some adjustment of the bridge height and saddles adjusted to the radius of the neck.

 

I will say that I am not a big fan of the neck, but I like the fact that you can replace the neck with one from Warmoth, Musikraft, Mighty Mite, etc.

 

Hrm OK. I'm leaning towards maybe going the warranty repair route.

 

It is nice that you can replace the neck. Aside from finish issues, and the fret wires wearing already, I don't mind it too much. That said, the minute this comes off warranty, I'm probably going to replace it (and the junk stock pickups too, I think). I wish we could replace the trem and trem block too.

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Hrm OK. I'm leaning towards maybe going the warranty repair route.

 

It is nice that you can replace the neck. Aside from finish issues, and the fret wires wearing already, I don't mind it too much. That said, the minute this comes off warranty, I'm probably going to replace it (and the junk stock pickups too, I think). I wish we could replace the trem and trem block too.

 

Hi Brendonc,  

 

I just picked up a 69 from Musicians Friend for the $799.00 and there were a few cosmetic issues with the paint job but I think that was due to how long they had the guitars sitting in the warehouse.  I am sure they moved all over the warehouse over the past few years before I bought it. They look more like rub marks. I will have to check my fret ware and for cracks but I doubt that I have cracked paint or a cracked neck. I thought I gave it a good once over but I can miss things.  I will have to check it out when I get home.  

 

As for the JTV being old yes they are (mine is a W1203) but I believe they are the same guitars as the ones they are producing now. Unless there is something I missed?

 

Bummer that you got a dud but they were NEW guitars and not used so, they (Line6) should be able to fix you up.  I highly doubt that they will give you a 2013 or 2014 made guitar.  They will more than likely fix what you currently have if possible.  Good luck.

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I bought one of the JTV69's at discount price last year - it turned out to be old stock from the serial number and firmware level installed - but fortunately for me it had no problems - just needed a set up and all was fine. Looks like you have been sent a bad one - so I would ask them to send you another one.  You should not settle for one that has such glaring problems. It happens with all guitars - some duds slip through QC - but believe me there are plenty of JTVs that are absolutely fine - so request a new one.   Good luck - hope you get a perfect example!

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Just thought I'd reach out and get some input on this.

 

I had an 89 when they first came out and a 69 about a year later. Both had to go back due to issues with the guitars, like the 69 had a gash in the finish I believe. Plus the guitars felt so ultra cheap I just couldn't get past that at ~$1400, so I opted for refunds.

 

Well Musicians Friend has a sale now on the black JTV-69 at $650 after rebate so I thought I'd give the JTV another chance. I figured I could live with $650 knowing what the guitar would be like. 

 

I really love the idea of the Variax. I know what kind of awesome things these guitars can do, esp. when paired with a POD. I've had two Variax 700s, several PODs, L6 amps, and other devices. I even bought a new POD HD500X to use with this Variax. This is just my hobby but I love playing with this stuff, and always have.

 

I usually do my own setup, but decided to take this guitar to a proper luthier. I really want the guitar set up perfectly. Plus the nut looks like crap (pic attached) and I can get that replaced for just $35 more than a setup alone, so I'm considering having that done too.

 

But then I noticed a few other things which might be deal breakers. The neck has a ridge or bump towards the nut, but on closer inspection it actually looks like a hairline crack. It's hard to see, so I rubbed some graphite on it to accentuate the ridge and took a pic (attached).

 

I don't know if this is cosmetic or not. The crack goes up into the fretboard too, so this worries me.

 

Then when I was taking pics of this, I noticed some pretty disturbing levels of fret wear on several frets (pic attached). I've only played the guitar for a few hours now. I don't think this is due to my playing style because my other guitar, which is a $179 Squier Affinity Strat, doesn't show signs of wear like this.

 

So I'm a bit on the fence here. I could take it to a luthier to see what he thinks, but so far I'm up to about $205 of work that needs to be done, maybe more. I'm sure this probably qualifies for warranty work, especially the crack, but I'm not sure what to do at this point. I feel pretty damn disappointed and I'm not sure I'm willing to give the JTV or Line 6 another chance.

 

I looked my 69 over tonight and didn't find any cracks in the neck or anywhere. I would RMA it back to MF and get another one.

 

I did however find what I think what you have pictured in the 3rd picture from the left.  It looks like the nut is small and doesn't go all the way to the edge of the fret board.  Maybe this was the fix for the strings from falling off the fret board?  I'm not sure.  I have already had the high E fall off the fret board while playing chords close to the nut.

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I looked my 69 over tonight and didn't find any cracks in the neck or anywhere. I would RMA it back to MF and get another one.

 

That's what I decided to do. Hopefully the next one doesn't have any issues!

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Well I received my replacement. So far everything looks good except one thing - the string spacing on the neck looks off to me. The treble side is closer to the edge than the bass side. The previous Variax had strings spacing pretty well centered on the neck just like my other guitars.

 

I'm a bit confused here - I thought this was a problem with earlier 69s but it had been fixed. The previous 69 was a W1204 model and this one is a W1404 model. If I understand correctly, the W1404 Variax was made this year, and the previous one was made in 2012. Maybe I've got my facts wrong.

 

The high E does slip off the edge rather easily, but so far in normal playing, I haven't had a problem so we'll see.

 

Anyone else have experience with this issue?

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Looks fine to me.  If you don't like it that way (I think the High E should be closer to edge than low E) then move the nut over a bit.  Easy to do.

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Looks fine to me.  If you don't like it that way (I think the High E should be closer to edge than low E) then move the nut over a bit.  Easy to do.

 

Yeah so far it isn't a problem. I'm comparing the spacing to the last 69 I sent back and my Squier Affinity Strat - both of those guitar have strings pretty much centered on the fingerboard.

 

I guess worst case, if it's just a matter of moving the nut, I can have a luthier take care of that. This might be as good as it gets with this guitar.

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One other place to check the string placement is at the bridge. I notice with my 69S, when I change strings, if I'm not careful, I can shift the bridge pieces side to side a bit. So when I do a string change I make sure they are lined up right. My 59 does not have this as each bridge is on a fixed screw for forward/backward adjustment for intonation, but the 69S and 69's in general have the intonation adjustment and height adjustment screws, and are not held in left/right position. If the spacing is good at the nut, but off toward the bridge end of the neck, your 6 bridges may have shifted one way or the other. Another possibility would be that the bolt-on neck needs to lined up in relation to the body. Mine did not have that, but I have heard of other 69 owners with that. Depending on your comfort level, maybe a luthier should check those bits as well.

 

On mine, I had to clean up the relief of my 69S's neck to stop some buzzing -- I relaxed the neck a touch, and slightly raised my action at the bridges. Any buzzing while not heard in the mags, will mess with the models -- it's got to play clean for the models. When I get a chance, I'm going to have my favorite guitar tech take a look and see if he can lower my action on it while maintaining clean buzz free clearances, so the modeling gets a clean signal to work with. My problem with this tech is he usually sets it too low for my heavy handed picking technique...

 

My 59 has good low clean action, and my 69S just needs a tweak to get the action down a bit.

 

My 2 cents...

 

Dave

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When I got my 69S from Sweetwater, they had pictures of each guitar and it was obvious that some of them had the neck aligned wrong and the strings were not centered on the higher frets but were centered at the nut.  I made sure the one I picked was not like that. 

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One other place to check the string placement is at the bridge. I notice with my 69S, when I change strings, if I'm not careful, I can shift the bridge pieces side to side a bit. So when I do a string change I make sure they are lined up right. My 59 does not have this as each bridge is on a fixed screw for forward/backward adjustment for intonation, but the 69S and 69's in general have the intonation adjustment and height adjustment screws, and are not held in left/right position.

 

That's odd.  My JTV-69 has slots milled into the top of the bridge plate to keep the individual saddles centered.  Did the bridge design change?

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Hmm... guess I never noticed any slots. Will look closer next string change. I have had to re-align the bridges a bit -- nothing major, just a touch. One thing I'm not crazy about is that I have to leave at least 2 strings in place while changing them on my 69S, to avoid the springs popping the bridge assembly off the pivot pins. My strat doesn't have anything like that and I just wasn't used to that as part of changing strings on strat-like trem-equipped guitars.

 

My 59 of course doesn't have a tremolo, so I can take all strings off and clean and oil the fret board when changing strings. My late 70's strat tremolo has the 6 screws at the pivot point, so don't have an issue. It's not a 2 point pivot like a lot of them in the past few years.

 

The 69S was a surprise the first time I changed strings when the whole assembly popped off, and was a bit of a challenge to get back in place - ended up using the trem arm, and needed another hand! Now I leave the high and low E strings in place, clean & oil the fret board, then change the other 4 strings, and with those in place, change the high & low E's last. I don't use the tremolo -- not on my strat either, so I pull the springs fairly tight so the bridge pretty much lays on the top of the guitar. I can still put the arm in and use it a touch, but have never really done it in all the years of having my strat, so never got into the use of trems, much.

 

I know I'll have to do the same string change procedure with my Gretsch Country Gent that I just re-acquired -- it has a Bigsby tremolo on it and floating bridge. That one will be a string by string replacement so as to not have everything go loosey-goosey and mess up the intonation. They all have their quirks!!

 

Dave

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The 69S was a surprise the first time I changed strings when the whole assembly popped off, and was a bit of a challenge to get back in place - ended up using the trem arm, and needed another hand! Now I leave the high and low E strings in place, clean & oil the fret board, then change the other 4 strings, and with those in place, change the high & low E's last. I don't use the tremolo -- not on my strat either, so I pull the springs fairly tight so the bridge pretty much lays on the top of the guitar. I can still put the arm in and use it a touch, but have never really done it in all the years of having my strat, so never got into the use of trems, much.

 

Yes, the JTV-69 bridge/tremolo assembly is a poor design.  No arguments there.  I had to disassemble mine last week to install grounding wires on all the transducers.  Relying on a series of mechanical contacts for ground return is a terrible practice.  In my case, there was a slow, steady degradation in sound quality culminating in a largely dead low-E string.  I originally suspected a dead transducer element, but it turned out to be a high-resistance between the casing of the transducer in the bridge saddle and the little PCB mounted underneath.  Soldering on ground return wires was a bit of work, but the improvement in sound qualtiy is not subtle.

 

Unstringing the guitar is almost impossible to do safely with the tremolo springs installed.  I tried wedging a strip of plastic under the rear of the bridge plate to hold it in place, but there's only a small area that's clear for this purpose before you obstruct the string ball during removal. Bottom line is that reinstalling the springs after having the bridge out is a royal PITA.  If you put two on the outsides, the bridge has so much upward force that the height-adjust screw inserts start lifting out of the body (!).  I ended putting one spring in the middle and stringing up at low tension.  Then, as I started bringing up the pitch there was enough balancing force to allow me to replace the two outside springs without forcing out the inserts.  Again, an awful design.

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Yes, the JTV-69 bridge/tremolo assembly is a poor design. No arguments there. I had to disassemble mine last week to install grounding wires on all the transducers. Relying on a series of mechanical contacts for ground return is a terrible practice. In my case, there was a slow, steady degradation in sound quality culminating in a largely dead low-E string. I originally suspected a dead transducer element, but it turned out to be a high-resistance between the casing of the transducer in the bridge saddle and the little PCB mounted underneath. Soldering on ground return wires was a bit of work, but the improvement in sound qualtiy is not subtle.

 

Unstringing the guitar is almost impossible to do safely with the tremolo springs installed. I tried wedging a strip of plastic under the rear of the bridge plate to hold it in place, but there's only a small area that's clear for this purpose before you obstruct the string ball during removal. Bottom line is that reinstalling the springs after having the bridge out is a royal PITA. If you put two on the outsides, the bridge has so much upward force that the height-adjust screw inserts start lifting out of the body (!). I ended putting one spring in the middle and stringing up at low tension. Then, as I started bringing up the pitch there was enough balancing force to allow me to replace the two outside springs without forcing out the inserts. Again, an awful design.

Can't argue with the grounding issue...design would work fine if we lived in a world where nothing got dirty.

 

As for string removal, this plagues every 2 point floating bridge on earth. There is a $16 solution, however:

 

http://www.shredneckstore.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=SN%2DTB%2D2

 

Yes, it costs 5x what its worth, given that it's just a strip of plastic with a little handle on one end, but it works. I've been using one for years

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I had to disassemble mine last week to install grounding wires on all the transducers.  Relying on a series of mechanical contacts for ground return is a terrible practice.  In my case, there was a slow, steady degradation in sound quality culminating in a largely dead low-E string.  I originally suspected a dead transducer element, but it turned out to be a high-resistance between the casing of the transducer in the bridge saddle and the little PCB mounted underneath.  Soldering on ground return wires was a bit of work, but the improvement in sound qualtiy is not subtle.

 

Any chance of a few pics of what you did?  Interested to see exactly what you are talking about and how you did it...

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I do not have pictures, sorry.  I did post in detail on another thread, so hopefully that will help if you want to undertake this.  Please do not consider this mod unless you have solid electronic bench skills, patience and the proper tools.

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One other place to check the string placement is at the bridge.

 

On mine, I had to clean up the relief of my 69S's neck to stop some buzzing

 

Good call - I just measured the spacing at the nut with a precision ruler. On the 69 I just got, the spacing from the edge of the fretboard to the low E is a hair over 3mm. The same spacing at the high E is about 2.5mm. Measuring at the 12th fret, I get about 4mm on the bass side and 2.5mm on the treble. To my eyes, the strings look very obviously shifted towards the treble side, and the ruler confirms that. I don't think it's the bridge in my case. 

 

I thought maybe the neck might be a bit crooked, but I haven't been able to prove that by measuring. I think maybe the nut and subsequent string placement might be making it look that way.

 

Comparing this to my Squier Affinity Strat (the only other electric guitar I have at the moment) the nut is just about centered on each side at 3mm at the nut and 4mm at the 12th fret on both sides (within 0.5mm). The strings look perfectly centered on the fretboard. This is how every Fender Strat I've had has been (Mexican, Chinese, and American) which is probably why this current 69 I have immediately looked "off" to me.

 

I have a couple guitar repair / setup books (I've always done this myself). In "How To Make Your Electric Guitar Play Great" by Dan Erlewine, in the section on nut maintenance there is a "Checklist for a perfect nut." It says (summarizing a bit):

  1. The nut would rest clean and tight in the slot and all adjacent surfaces would contact precisely.
  2. It would look good. No exposed or sharp edges, etc.
  3. The outer E strings would not be too far or too close to the outer edges of the fretboard according to player preference.
  4. Each string would fit cleanly in its respective nut slot.

My 69 seems OK on #4, but WAY off on #1-3 in my opinion (in other words, the nut looks like sh*t). In contrast, my Squier came with a nut setup that's nearly perfect relative to this checklist. I've never had a guitar come set up so poorly as all four Variaxes I've had did.

 

As far as buzz, mine has a fair bit of that too. I think I'm either going to throw on a set of 11s and do the setup myself, or wait and have the whole thing done by a luthier. I was inspired to try 11s because of this blog post on getting great acoustic sounds out of the Variax. Granted, Sean Halley is a master player/presenter so that might be the main reason his acoustic tones sound so good, but I thought I'd try 11s anyway just to see how much of a difference it makes.

 

Now I leave the high and low E strings in place

 

Oh, good tip man. I probably would have removed all of the strings without even thinking.

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according 2  L6  6 Proven Steps: The Fastest Way to Re-String a Guitar, re-stringing shld b carried out 1 string @ a time...

 

 

3. Clip and Re-String One by One

After using a drill bit to loosen up the strings, it’s time to remove the old strings. The more time the strings are off the guitar, the more chances there are for the neck to move and lose tension. Although clipping all the strings at once may seem the fastest, it’s not necessarily the smartest. By re-stringing one at a time, the guitar maintains the most tension. This will ultimately save time, as it doesn’t require as much time to retune the guitar.

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Although I did not for many years for the last 5 or So I have changed one string at a time on all my guitars.It works. When I have to clean a fretboard or level my frets I use a little home made jack keep to keep the trem lifted and do it as quickly as I can. Also all my Fenders expensive or cheap require a lot of neck and other adjustments.

 

It's all part of boating son.

 

Keep the guitars and play love enjoy and work on them.

 

They are not keyboards.

 

The adjusting and tweaking part of guitar ownership is what makes us different.

 

It is what makes you sound different from every other electric guitar player even those who use the same amps and guitars.

 

 

 

Good Luck!

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It's easy to make a plastic shim to keep the trem in place when changing strings.  Most times, I replace them one at a time anyway.

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Well I sent this last 69 back. I was set to keep it and just work with the guitar's flaws (e.g. have the nut replaced) but then one night I was playing it and noticed the volume knob was bent. That was the last straw for me so I sent back the 69 and the POD. I'm done.

 

The screws on the locking tuners weren't even screwed all the way down ffs. I thought these things were inspected and set up in CA before they go out to retailers?? I don't buy that shipping had anything to do with this either. I have NEVER seen anything like this with any other guitar I have ever purchased. 

 

I picked up a Schecter Blackjack used off eBay and the thing came set up near perfectly. The nut meets all four points on the checklist I posted above - it looks great. The bridge is a nice Hipshot that doesn't look and feel like cheap mystery metal crap. It came with Seymour Duncan blackouts and locking tuners. The guitar feels, looks, and plays great at a $950 price point, so I KNOW it can be done!

 

It's really too bad Line 6 couldn't meet same standard of quality with the Korean JTVs. Some of this stuff is really basic so I don't know what's going on there.

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I got in on a black-deal 69at $650 brand new variax (with the rebate). the reading here is making me nervous and thinking about sending mine back. I haven't check the serial #, but the nut is shrunk in on both ends, which I thought was off....but thought it was designed that way?

Being so used to Fenders I wondered if Id like the guitar. I checked it out and everything seemed ok, the setup was low, so strumming softer helped, the electronics worked and the battery charger worked. I love the modelling and the guitar is cool, but the issues Im reading about has me concerned. 

 

For $1400 I would expect 110% perfection, for even $650 I would want to have everything as expected, and not defective!

 

Maybe these issues are the 2% , but the OP has tried 3 guitars now....I'll be looking mine over with a magnifying glass tonight.

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add- I checked my Blackie-Variax. Born 06-2013.

it had no flaws , except the nut is smaller and there is a tiny bit of room at the edges.

I went and checked my Fenders and Takimine and they both come off the edge too on the High/E..009 or .010".

 

so this talk of the high E coming off the edge is probably the player. I guess most guitars this is the way it is because there isnt room to bend downward on that string. thats my opinion after trying the other two guitars.

 

or another way to put it, at least the Variax I have doesnt have a e string problem, or if it does every guitar made probably has the same problem.

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add- I checked my Blackie-Variax. Born 06-2013.

it had no flaws , except the nut is smaller and there is a tiny bit of room at the edges.

I went and checked my Fenders and Takimine and they both come off the edge too on the High/E..009 or .010".

 

so this talk of the high E coming off the edge is probably the player. I guess most guitars this is the way it is because there isnt room to bend downward on that string. thats my opinion after trying the other two guitars.

 

or another way to put it, at least the Variax I have doesnt have a e string problem, or if it does every guitar made probably has the same problem.

If it works for you and you like the neck, then thats all that matters. If you worry too much about the tales of woe that you read on forums like this, you'll never buy anything. Everything ever sold has some lemmons escape the assembly line.

 

Personally, while there was nothing "defective" about my stock neck, I consider the dimensions to be a gross miscarriage of justice...as such, it was replaced after just a couple of months. There are options out there if you decide that you can't live with the stock neck.

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Guitar necks are a personal choice - everyone's hands are different.  I happen to like my 69S neck better than the necks on any of my other guitars because it fits my small hands better.  One size fits all just doesn't work and the only solution is to pick a guitar that has a neck that you prefer or better yet swap out the neck for the one that is a perfect fit for your playing style and hand size.

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For $1400 I would expect 110% perfection, for even $650 I would want to have everything as expected, and not defective!

 

This has been my expectation even at $650. This expectation was partially set by even the cheapest guitar I have, which came built and set up nearly perfectly. Most Schecters I've seen at this price point come with Tusq nuts cut and fit perfectly into the neck, US EMG pickups, etc.

 

If I'm buying something at American Strat prices (nearly the deluxe model even) then I expect way more. American Strats come with upgraded trems, steel saddles, steel trem block, hard shell case, upgraded pickups/electronics, etc. for example.

 

Aside from all this, the American Strats I've had have been built and set up nearly perfectly - the type of guitars that would make me feel that WOW feeling whenever I'd pick them up. I've never gotten that with the JTV-69/89. "Little" things that added up, like the nut not being flush with the neck, probably have contributed to this.

 

Plus overall, there is something just not quite "right" about the JTV 69/89 that I can't quite put my finger on. I don't really know what it is, but I'm reminded of some of the stories in the book "Blink" by Malcolm Gladwell.

 

The best way I can put it is say you were to take detailed guitar specs for each part of the JTV to a furniture and/or machine shop. They'd probably be able to put together a guitar I'm sure, but certain things might not be quite right vs. if an experienced guitar manufacturer / luthier had built the guitar. I don't know what it is exactly, but I've never had this experience with any of the 10+ (maybe 20+ now) guitars I've had.

 

When the Variax was first released, a Line 6 guy said "this is a $700 guitar with $700 in electronics." Personally, I don't think this is even a $150 guitar, but that's based on my own experiences and biases (maybe a $150 guitar with $500 in electronics at the current sale price). I've said it a few times, but I have a $179 Squier Affinity Strat that's far better built than any JTV I've had.

 

If the neck/nut/string spacing works for you, that's great. Like others have said, it's partly personal preference and playing style. Mine had other problems too - gash in the finish, bent volume knob, crack in the neck, etc. If you like the guitar then I think that's really all that matters. I just couldn't get past each guitar's flaws as well as my own personal issues with them (and maybe Line 6 in general after these experiences).

 

I know many others have gotten a LOT of value out of their JTVs. If that first 69 I got recently hadn't come with a crack in the neck, we probably wouldn't even be having this conversation. I would have modified it enough to make it my own like many others here seem to do, and would have just let go of the rest.

 

 

Guitar necks are a personal choice - everyone's hands are different.  I happen to like my 69S neck better than the necks on any of my other guitars because it fits my small hands better.  One size fits all just doesn't work and the only solution is to pick a guitar that has a neck that you prefer or better yet swap out the neck for the one that is a perfect fit for your playing style and hand size.

 

Well put, but I just have to wonder how practical swapping a neck on such an expensive guitar is. I guess if I were playing professionally, this would make more sense. I know many pro/semi-pro players heavily modify their guitars - I have myself on my cheaper guitars. As a hobbyist, I would just have such a hard time doing so on such an expensive guitar though, but that's me.

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Ordering online is tricky, it offers Tax Free and Returns but no telling which one you will get.

 

3 guitars, I wouldn't buy another if it had cracks in the neck etc..

It seems you might be getting "B-stock" and its not Line 6 fault but your seller.

Why doesn't the seller check this out before shipping? especially after 3 guitars?

 

B-Stock is hit and miss, like Ross Dress for Less, defective stuff....sell it cheap, who cares if one arm is longer than the other, sometimes you save some $....... lol

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Really sorry to hear that you have had 3 bad examples sent to you.  I cannot believer your supplier is not checking them thoroughly before sending them out to you - I would have thought after 2 returns they would have made sure you got a perfect example for your 3rd.   It should not be happening - there are good JTVs out there.  Has your supplier stated that these were "B Stock" or ex-display or something - or are they saying these are brand new unused factory examples?

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It seems you might be getting "B-stock" and its not Line 6 fault but your seller.

 

brand new unused factory examples?

 

Every JTV I've ordered (four of them now) have been brand new and unused. The Line 6 tape hadn't even been cut on the box until I got them. I had the same issues years ago when they first came out too so I don't know what's going on. I know some online retailers will do a full setup and inspection for you before they ship but Musician's Friend doesn't do that. I've ordered many guitars from MF and have never had a problem otherwise.

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