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moleng1

New Guy to Variax!!

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Hey all, I just purchased my first Variax guitar, it's a lake placid blue JTV-69 and I'm just amazed by the thing!!

 

I am now actively looking for an HD 500/500X board and a DT25 amp to finish the set up. This forum seems to have lots of advice and knowledge, I'm looking forward to learning more about my new acquisition!!

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Hi moleng1. You bought an amazing guitar. Welcome to the forum. I hope u will stick with us :)

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Welcome to the forum!  You're going to have a blast.  It's probably a good idea to get the Variax first and then start adding the other components.  I bought all 3 at once and had a hard time figuring out where to start the learning process.

 

I would have been totally lost, and frustrated, if it weren't for the incredible group of people on this board.

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Hi Moleng1 congrats on the new guitar it's almost unbelievable how close the models are with the real thing it certainly took me aback when I first plugged in my JTV59.

 

As for getting the pod and the DT25 Darrell is quite right in what he says it takes a lot of figuring out but worth it on the long run. What I would do is if you play in a band and normally use pedals or the amp for OD get the Amp first if on the other hand you play at home and record or play through USB or powered monitors get the Pod first they sound fantastic studio direct but getting that to sound the same when you link it to a DT25 is an other mater all together you would think all you have to do is turn off the cab sim and change the amp to pre and that would be that but in reality you have to treat the pod+DT25 as a completely separate entity and start from scratch patch by patch.

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Thanks for the replies guys, appreciated! I'm really just a guy who likes to play around at home. I'm not a great guitarist, but I have fun.

 

Would the dream rig be way to much overkill for me? I have a chance to pick up both an HD500 and a DT25 at what amounts to a steal on my local CL, but if the set up will just frustrate me am I further ahead to just get the HD500 and stay with my AC15C1 as my amp?

 

Could I also just use the DT25 as a stand alone amp or was it created just for use with the Variax/HD500?

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Hey moleng1, welcome to the fold!

 

The DT25 is an awesome stand alone amp!  I like playing mine stand alone often.  But... if you want to achieve the full potential of the DT25 and get tonal flexibility with the ability to recall various tones/patches/guitars/tunings (yes, guitars & tunings!  via VDI) at the push of a button - get the full dream rig with the HD500, JTV and DT25.

 

A good friend and outstanding guitar player recently plugged straight into my DT25 rig and was blown away by how awesome it sounded and felt to play.  This guy is a tube amp purist/snob :) and he was shocked at how killer the tone was coming from the DT25.

 

If you prefer a simple, kick a$$ setup, go with just the JTV and DT25 and a couple analog stompboxes.  If you are a tweaker (no, not that kind of tweaker, lol) you'll be in heaven with the Dream Rig.  Beware: the learning curve is steep with the full Dream Rig, but the payoff is rewarding too.

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Could I also just use the DT25 as a stand alone amp 

 Yes it is a very good stand alone. Straight off the bat there are 4 amp models to use and 2 channels so you could have clean twin on channel 1 and vintage Marshall on channel 2 or any combo of the 4 amps. if you have midi leads which interface with your PC you can download the app and choose other amps.

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I also just play at home for fun and I'm very glad I bought the entire Dream Rig.

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Another question guys, would I be ok to just buy a cheap acoustic amp to play the acoustic models through? I have heard that the DT-25 doesn't handle the acoustic settings very well?

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Well if you have a decent sound system either as a hi fi or a audio interface for your computer all ready it would be cheaper to use them. I have a USB cakewalk UA-25EX which has 2  1/4" jacks or xlr inputs also have powered monitors connected to it and can plug my pod direct into it. I have also played the variax direct into this for acoustic if you do not have this but have a good music system all you need is one of the cheap Behringer mixer desks and 2 1/4" jack to phone leads which will cost all in about $60.

If you want to go expensive which would do you for playing live think about the other version of the dream rig and instead of the dt25 get the LT2 active I believe it is easier to use with the pod as there is not as much tweaking to do V using the DT25.

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Thanks for the reply big bob, appreciated. I won't use the rig outside the house so I think the LT2 is out (plus I would like to have the option of using the DT25 as a stand alone with my other guitars.

 

I only have a sound bar for my TV so not sure if I could make that work? I know I can get a couple of cheap acoustics amps in the $150 range though, if the DT25 can turn down to bedroom volumes (which it looks like it can?) I could sell my Vox AC4TV to offset the cost of that.

 

Any other suggestions would be appreciated!!

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You can always get a pair of powered monitor speakers.  They will sound great with acoustic.  I went for a powered PA speaker and it sounds great.  I got an EV ZLX-12P and that is all I use with my Pod.  Gives me full range for acoustics and sounds great with my regular electric models on my Variax.

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Thanks Charlie, almost all the powered monitors I can find are more expensive than the smaller acoustic amps I am looking at.

 

Can I run the HD500 into an acoustic amp if I decide to go that route? Or is there really any need to use it with just acoustic use?

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You can run the pod into a powered monitor or acoustic amp you would use studio direct same as you would plugging into a desk or PA if you wait later this month there is an update to the pod500x for an acoustic amp among other amps unfortunately you will have to pay for it. Its in the vintage amp pack here:-

 

http://line6.com/pod-firmware-update/

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Here we are.

 

Vintage Model Pack includes models based on*

Roland® JC-120
Fender® Champ® (Tweed)
Orange OR-80
VOX® AC30 (Fawn Normal Ch.)
VOX® AC30 (Fawn Bright Ch.)
Roland® JC-120 2x12
Fender® Champ® 1x8
Acoustic
Pete Anderson Custom

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I have not found any low end acoustic amps that I would recommend.  A keyboard amp will work as will any acoustic amp but I think you can find a studio monitor for a reasonable price.  You only need one but two is nicer for stereo effects and a fuller sound.  The trick for good Acoustic is to have a full range speaker system.  A home stereo will work too.  I used to use my pod with an old home stereo with a decent set of speakers.

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You can run the pod into a powered monitor or acoustic amp you would use studio direct same as you would plugging into a desk or PA if you wait later this month there is an update to the pod500x for an acoustic amp among other amps unfortunately you will have to pay for it. Its in the vintage amp pack here:-

 

http://line6.com/pod-firmware-update/

Unfortunately I only have the HD500, not the 500X. Are these downloads good for the HD 500 as well?

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I have not found any low end acoustic amps that I would recommend.  A keyboard amp will work as will any acoustic amp but I think you can find a studio monitor for a reasonable price.  You only need one but two is nicer for stereo effects and a fuller sound.  The trick for good Acoustic is to have a full range speaker system.  A home stereo will work too.  I used to use my pod with an old home stereo with a decent set of speakers.

I was looking at the Fishman loudbox mini, it seems to get rave reviews from all who have tested it.

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Unfortunately I only have the HD500, not the 500X. Are these downloads good for the HD 500 as well?

Yes, the same update will be available for the HD500 as well, but it will come a little later than the HD500X update.

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Well, I now have the whole dream rig and got the Fishman loudbox mini for acoustic sounds.It sounds amazing, now all I need is the cable to go from the HD500 to the DT25 and I'm on my way, might take a week for the cable to come, until then lots of studying to be done!!!

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If you are talking about the L6 Link cable, you can try using a standard XLR microphone cable while you wait for the LIne 6 cable to arrive.

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If you are talking about the L6 Link cable, you can try using a standard XLR microphone cable while you wait for the LIne 6 cable to arrive.

Thanks for the info SH. But the L6 cable will be here in less than a week so no scense in getting a second cable that I probally won't use. Besides I'm really enjoying the sounds just straight out of the DT25 and the fish an!!

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Right - no point in buying one. I just thought you might have a standard XLR cable lying around.

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Right - no point in buying one. I just thought you might have a standard XLR cable lying around.

LOL, I didn't even know what a XLR cable was until a week ago!!!

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Welcome! If you are still looking for an Acoustic patch then try the one Rad made in Customtone. If you want to split the signal & send a 'pure' acoustic signal to another amp/pa then I tweaked it a bit and mad a patch called Acoustic DT.

 

You have an awesome rig now that I'm sure you will have loads of fun with!

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Welcome! If you are still looking for an Acoustic patch then try the one Rad made in Customtone. If you want to split the signal & send a 'pure' acoustic signal to another amp/pa then I tweaked it a bit and mad a patch called Acoustic DT.

 

You have an awesome rig now that I'm sure you will have loads of fun with!

Thanks Matt, but I haven't even hooked up the whole set up yet, and to tell you the truth the more I read the more daunting it's becoming!!! I'm hoping once the cables get here that it will fall into place, but I think I'm freaking myself out with all the reading I'm doing, lol

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Don't freak out. There is a significant learning curve and you should expect to feel a bit lost and overwhelmed for a while.. You have a very flexible and very powerful system with more options and features than you will likely ever use.

 

My advice is to start with the simplest component(s) first. Get very familiar with it/them, and then move on to the more complex devices.

 

Imho, the DT-25 as a standalone amp is probably where I would start. Use a regular guitar (or your new JTV in a single bank - e.g. strat or tele or les paul, and ignore alternate tunings for now). Get familiar with the four topologies of the amp and their different sounds. Experiment with the tone stack in all topologies, and begin to discover the amp models and settings that you prefer.

 

Next, add the JTV. Plug it directly into the DT-25; no HD500 yet. Get familiar with all its guitars, and experiment with combinations of guitars and the DT-25 topologies. Again, discover your preferences. Then familiarize yourself with the JTV alternate tunings, setting the different tunings using both the dial and manually.

 

Next - the most complicated of the beasts - the HD500. This will take the most time. I would start without using the VDI connection. Connect your JTV using a standard 1/4" guitar lead. Read the manual comprehensively, learn to use the HD500 Edit program, experiment with the different output modes, and learn how to best use the HD500 with the DT-25 - especially the use of preamp models rather than full amp models.

 

Finally, integrate the JTV using VDI and learn to store model settings and alternate tunings as part of the HD500 presets.

 

All of that should keep you busy well into the summer!

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Don't freak out. There is a significant learning curve and you should expect to feel a bit lost and overwhelmed for a while.. You have a very flexible and very powerful system with more options and features than you will likely ever use.

 

My advice is to start with the simplest component(s) first. Get very familiar with it/them, and then move on to the more complex devices.

 

Imho, the DT-25 as a standalone amp is probably where I would start. Use a regular guitar (or your new JTV in a single bank - e.g. strat or tele or les paul, and ignore alternate tunings for now). Get familiar with the four topologies of the amp and their different sounds. Experiment with the tone stack in all topologies, and begin to discover the amp models and settings that you prefer.

 

Next, add the JTV. Plug it directly into the DT-25; no HD500 yet. Get familiar with all its guitars, and experiment with combinations of guitars and the DT-25 topologies. Again, discover your preferences. Then familiarize yourself with the JTV alternate tunings, setting the different tunings using both the dial and manually.

 

Next - the most complicated of the beasts - the HD500. This will take the most time. I would start without using the VDI connection. Connect your JTV using a standard 1/4" guitar lead. Read the manual comprehensively, learn to use the HD500 Edit program, experiment with the different output modes, and learn how to best use the HD500 with the DT-25 - especially the use of preamp models rather than full amp models.

 

Finally, integrate the JTV using VDI and learn to store model settings and alternate tunings as part of the HD500 presets.

 

All of that should keep you busy well into the summer!

Wow!! Now I feel so much better, lol!!

 

Thanks for the advice on where to start SH, I have already started to explore the amp with my Gibson goldtop P-90 and the sounds out of this amp are really great! I thought I'd miss my Vox AC15C1 that I traded to get the DT-25, but this blows the Vox out of the water!!

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Would the dream rig be way to much overkill for me? I have a chance to pick up both an HD500 and a DT25 at what amounts to a steal on my local CL

 

Yeah, the DT25 linked to an HD500 is a cool setup, I prefer it to going "full range" in studio/direct mode.

I used an HD500 for a few years without the DT25; from 2010-2014, then early last year added the JTV59 and DT25 to my rig.

 

Love it. Added a second DT25 earlier this year. Love them!

 

How I see it, is the DT25 makes it simpler, not more complex. With the DT25 you are removing certain "tweaking" variables, that you would be adjusting if you were sticking with studio/direct.

 

For home use, it's a bit of a toss up. I still prefer the DT25 at home vs running direct to the mixer or to headphones; but that kind of volume isn't always practical.. And no doubt, the DT25 is plenty loud.

 

Reason I say it simplifies it is, the DT25 when linked to the HD500 sets the HD500 into combo/poweramp mode, which disables the microphone sims, and also deactivates a couple of other settings. Essentially, you will choose the amp model from the "PRE" versions - meaning preamp only.

 

Then the DT25 will configure the power amp to match the settings / data sent over via the Link. 

 

I also like that if you have to adjust the tone or volume knobs on the DT, it adjusts those parameters on the HD500. Certainly easier to reach the top of the amp, vs down to the floorboard.

 

In terms of "silent" practice, you can still use the DT25 - in low volume mode, with the amp set to standy, the XLR out from the DT25 is still active.

 

Anyway, if you can get a good deal, take a closer look for sure! Be mindful of the footswitch condition on the HD500 if it's used. Mine are just starting to go out on me and act up some - over time they break and stop working properly. Hence the new FS design in the HD500x..

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Congratulations on the new guitar! You got the one I wanted, lol. Mine is the Jtv 69 ( white) I think the blue is really sharp looking, but

There were none to be had in my area, so I settled on the white one.

 

I have only had mine about three weeks, and I am lovin it!

 

I also have the hd500x ... It's an awesome beast.

 

Wish I could lug around a DT 25 but I have had back surgery, so they are just too heavy for me.

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Congratulations on the new guitar! You got the one I wanted, lol. Mine is the Jtv 69 ( white) I think the blue is really sharp looking, but

There were none to be had in my area, so I settled on the white one.

I have only had mine about three weeks, and I am lovin it!

I also have the hd500x ... It's an awesome beast.

Wish I could lug around a DT 25 but I have had back surgery, so they are just too heavy for me.

Congrats on the white 69, that would have been my second choice, although they did have a shoreline gold 69S I thought very hard about, but really wanted the humbucker, so blue it was.

 

The DT is a bit of a beast, but I'm just an at home player, so for me it's perfect, and what an amp!!

 

I'm getting a little antsy, it's taking forever for my damn cables to arrive, and I want to start experimenting!!

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Yeah, the DT25 linked to an HD500 is a cool setup, I prefer it to going "full range" in studio/direct mode.

I used an HD500 for a few years without the DT25; from 2010-2014, then early last year added the JTV59 and DT25 to my rig.

 

Love it. Added a second DT25 earlier this year. Love them!

 

How I see it, is the DT25 makes it simpler, not more complex. With the DT25 you are removing certain "tweaking" variables, that you would be adjusting if you were sticking with studio/direct.

 

For home use, it's a bit of a toss up. I still prefer the DT25 at home vs running direct to the mixer or to headphones; but that kind of volume isn't always practical.. And no doubt, the DT25 is plenty loud.

 

Reason I say it simplifies it is, the DT25 when linked to the HD500 sets the HD500 into combo/poweramp mode, which disables the microphone sims, and also deactivates a couple of other settings. Essentially, you will choose the amp model from the "PRE" versions - meaning preamp only.

 

Then the DT25 will configure the power amp to match the settings / data sent over via the Link. 

 

I also like that if you have to adjust the tone or volume knobs on the DT, it adjusts those parameters on the HD500. Certainly easier to reach the top of the amp, vs down to the floorboard.

 

In terms of "silent" practice, you can still use the DT25 - in low volume mode, with the amp set to standy, the XLR out from the DT25 is still active.

 

Anyway, if you can get a good deal, take a closer look for sure! Be mindful of the footswitch condition on the HD500 if it's used. Mine are just starting to go out on me and act up some - over time they break and stop working properly. Hence the new FS design in the HD500x..

Thanks for all the good info Col. As soon as my cables arrive I can start to find out what this set will truly do, till then the 69 and the DT are keeping me entertained!!

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How I see it, is the DT25 makes it simpler, not more complex. With the DT25 you are removing certain "tweaking" variables, that you would be adjusting if you were sticking with studio/direct.

 The only thing I feel cheated about with the dream rig is you can not get the same sound through line 6 link to DT25 as the studio version i.e I was playing the Beano album an early John Mayall with a young Eric Clapton via iTunes and had the pod studio direct into my usb interface. The set up was what was he playing at the time which was a 59 Les Paul into a Marshall JTM45 combo so set the variax for Les Paul model and the pod for full range with 212 fender because they do not do 212 with green back speakers and it was suprised it was real close in tone. However now comes the bit that annoys me disconnect pod plug in line 6 cable from pod to DT25 connect variax via proper cable change full amp to pre and turn off cab as dt25 has its own speaker leave all other settings as they were and guess what it sounds nothing like the pod direct and no mater how hi you turned the input gain on the modeled amp there still was none of the overdrive sound that was on the direct sound.

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