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Variax Verses Tyler

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Can anyone tell me if the Tyler guitars actually sound any better than the old variax.  As they have dropped in price I was thinking of upgrading.  Not much point though if I am just buying altered tuning.

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subjective...

i think they sound tons better... more dynamics... i doubt many would deny that workbench HD is alot better... even if some prefer the sounds of the older firmware...

also i think the majority would agree that the guitar itself is better also.

 

then there is the ability to use standard pickups as well... or even use both the standard pickups and the models...

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All of the guitar modeling on the James Tyler Variax is completely re-worked from the original series. There is significantly more detail in the all the models, some other features that benefit from the original....

 

-Workbench HD software, much easier to use

-Magnetic Pickups

-Ability to blend Magnetic and Variax modeling at the same time (with addition of POD HD)

-Lithium ION battery, no more AA's

-Guitar crafted by James Tyler

-Virtual Capo, create your own custom tunings on the fly

 

@line6jbutter

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The magnetic pickups and the Lithium Ion battery are two very practical features that are really almost enough in and of themselves to justify the upgrade to me, but even beyond those, I find that JTV to just be a much better experience all around.

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Alternate tuning knob is very practical as well if you're like me and don't like wasting bank spaces on having copies of guitars you already have on the variax, tuned differently.

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All of the guitar modeling on the James Tyler Variax is completely re-worked from the original series. There is significantly more detail in the all the models, some other features that benefit from the original....

 

-Workbench HD software, much easier to use

-Magnetic Pickups

-Ability to blend Magnetic and Variax modeling at the same time (with addition of POD HD)

-Lithium ION battery, no more AA's

-Guitar crafted by James Tyler

-Virtual Capo, create your own custom tunings on the fly

 

@line6jbutter

I just bought a HD500X and L3t speaker.  Now to get the Variax and DT(s).

 

Can you tell me the difference between the US made Variax and the Korean?

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Essentially it is a US Made James Tyler guitar, very high quality. A few minor differences in the tuning machines and bridge pieces. Variax technology and functionality are identical. It also comes with a hard case.

 

@line6jbutter

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I want a quality guitar.  Is it worth the 3 grand or so?   I am not a professional but and avid enthusiast playing for over 40 years and wanting a quality rig.  The POD and L3t seem to have been a great start.  I do have a budget but don't want to be left thinking how much better it could be.

 

I have a friend who bought an Alvarez acoustic bc he (and I) like my Yairi DY53.   Both Alvarez's but very significant difference in quality and sound.  I don't want that. If it is worth it, I would lean towards a US.

 

Very much appreciate your reply.

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I want a quality guitar.  Is it worth the 3 grand or so?   I am not a professional but and avid enthusiast playing for over 40 years and wanting a quality rig.  The POD and L3t seem to have been a great start.  I do have a budget but don't want to be left thinking how much better it could be.

 

I have a friend who bought an Alvarez acoustic bc he (and I) like my Yairi DY53.   Both Alvarez's but very significant difference in quality and sound.  I don't want that. If it is worth it, I would lean towards a US.

 

Very much appreciate your reply.

 

I have a US JTV-69, and I really like it. Is it worth $3,000? It's hard to say what makes any guitar worth a certain amount. I think it's as nice or nicer than any expensive guitar I've played, and I don't regret buying it one bit. The US JTVs have a quarter-sawn neck, and I find the neck on mine to be very playable (I got the maple neck). I think the Korean JTVs are fine, too, but I guess I was buying the JTV to be my main guitar for the next few years, so I figured it was worth the investment.

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I also have a Variax 500 and a Korean made JTV69. I love my 500 but the JTV blows it away in every category. Better modeling , alternate tuning knob, mag pickups that sound really good, thinner neck, rechargeable battery, virtual capo, better software and the list keeps on going.

 

I also would never pay the extra for the US version; well maybe if the Korean version wasn't so nice.

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Thanks for all the replies, sorry I didn't respond earlier.  I think I might upgrade to the new version. Thanks.

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Before the HD modeling and the newer firmwares came around, the gap between the old Variaxes and new Variaxes wasn't big enough for me to really care about having a JTV, but over the years it keeps getting bigger.

 

HD modeling, better build quality, alt tuning knob that you can assign tunings to on the guitar and apply to any model on the guitar, the POD HD control features, and some other stuff I probably missed.

 

I really want a JTV but I'm waiting for the right moment to throw 1k at Line 6.

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I've got a Variax 700 in black which is just a great, great guitar (except that the trem arm is a bit loose and not easy to tighten). But it's light, it's got a fantastic neck, superb playability, it just feels great. I wanted to upgrade a couple of years ago to a JTV but I thought that the JTVs were poorly made with horrible necks, very cheap looking guitars - that was my opinion anyway. I've never seen a JTV yet that was anywhere near the build quality and playability of the Variax 700 (I can't speak for the quality etc. of the 300 and 500, never owned one). But now the electronics of my 700 are pretty well redundant as they've been overtaken by the upgraded sounds of the JTV. 

 

So I've got a fantastic guitar that plays brilliantly but is obsolete. Hence my decision to trade my HD500 for a pedal board with a Tech 21 FlyRig 5 at its heart, try to sell my 700 and go back to my old Strat and an all-analog FRFR rig. 

 

And that's the real issue with Variax guitars. They're really computers, and by defintion have a shelf life - I've had my Strat for over 20 years and can't see it becoming obsolete any time soon... 

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And that's the real issue with Variax guitars. They're really computers, and by defintion have a shelf life

 

I agree with this statement for my Variax 500 but not for my JTV69.  I don't feel that it has a shelf life since it has the mag pickups.  Even if the computer fails in my Variax 500, and I can't repair it, I'd probably just add a Fishman Triple Play and keep going.

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Personally, I prefer the neck on the 500, above and beyond any JTV that I have played.

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I too infinitely prefer the build quality of my Japanese 700 to my Korean JTV59. I would like the new electronics though. The new Variax Standard is a possibility, and should be easier to fit to a Real Strat if you want to go the transplant route.

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Comparing a JTV vs A variax? Well, I can say that the built and quality of my V700 is way better than any JTV US or Korean... Sounds maybe obsolete, but compare the acoustics, or the strato, or the custom gibson, or the jazz and semi models of the 700... Way better...Playability? Way better... Beauty? Way better... I really wish the next Variax will be made in Japan and has the same quality of the 700 had...

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I never owned a 700 but I do agree that they are very nice looking guitars.  I do not have any complaints at all about the build quality of my JTV69S though.  No flaws and the finish is as good as any guitar I own.  One could argue about the neck and body shape but I don't consider that build quality but design.  I like the new features included in the JTV. (Much better battery, Alternate Tuning selector, Mag Pickups!!!)  I like the strat body style but I would prefer a Hardtail rather than the trem.  My hardtail 500 stays in tune better than any other guitar I own after I installed locking tuners on it.

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 My hardtail 500 stays in tune better than any other guitar I own after I installed locking tuners on it.

 

 

Which locking tuners did you install?  I have a 500 I have been wanting to do this to, but I haven't found which tuners would be a drop in replacement for the factory ones.  

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I used Planet Waves locking tuners.  They dropped right in.  You have to get the ones that are designed for 3 on a side to go with the 500 neck.

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I used Planet Waves locking tuners.  They dropped right in.  You have to get the ones that are designed for 3 on a side to go with the 500 neck.

Thanks!

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I went out of my way to find a 700 because I love the overall look. I read a lot of positive things about craftsmanship, quality, playability, comfort. They were all right on the money. I was pleasantly surprised... And I'm real "picky". The 700 is a keeper. Word out to Yamaha... A made in Japan 700 with JTV electronics and SSS pickups would be a thing of beauty! Thanks!

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I also have a Variax 500 and a Korean made JTV69. I love my 500 but the JTV blows it away in every category. Better modeling , alternate tuning knob, mag pickups that sound really good, thinner neck, rechargeable battery, virtual capo, better software and the list keeps on going.

 

I also would never pay the extra for the US version; well maybe if the Korean version wasn't so nice.

I'm really surprised that you say the neck is thinner… Every JTV that I have seen, Strat and Les Paul models, had necks that felt like logs compared to the 500. I had a JTV69 briefly and did not notice any difference in the guitar models. 

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I'm really surprised that you say the neck is thinner… Every JTV that I have seen, Strat and Les Paul models, had necks that felt like logs compared to the 500. I had a JTV69 briefly and did not notice any difference in the guitar models. 

 

Did you have the JTV69 before the HD update? I could see you saying you couldn't notice the difference between the guitar models before the 2.0 update, but there was a pretty significant change in most models after that. To be honest, though, I even thought there was a significant difference in how JTV responded compared to the earlier Variaxes before the HD update.

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The neck on my JTV69S is different than my 500.  The fretboard is narrower.  I like it that way.  I think the HD models sound fuller than the models on my 500.  I never tried my JTV with older than 2.0 FW. (Came with 2.0)

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I'm really surprised that you say the neck is thinner… Every JTV that I have seen, Strat and Les Paul models, had necks that felt like logs compared to the 500. I had a JTV69 briefly and did not notice any difference in the guitar models. 

I'll measure both tonight and post the results.  It feels thinner to me.  BTW, I like both necks.

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