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Defective Scribble Strip?


ColonelForbin
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Just got my Helix on Wednesday from Sweetwater. Sounds fantastic, yet sadly looks like I might have a malfunctioning scribble strip. It's gone much darker, dimmer than the rest, almost off, but you can still barely read the patch or effect name. It's the footswitch strip to the left of the mode switch. Rebooting doesn't change it.

Anyone else have this? Does any kind of factory reset help? or do I need to open a service ticket/email Sweetwater?..

Thanks :)

 

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Seems to be a lot of faulty scribble strips over the last week. Hopefully it's a dodgy batch rather than that they are simply terrible quality and unreliable. My Helix has been on preorder for over a month now and with so many teething issues i'm wondering whether to go ahead with it still or not.

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Open a ticket for a replacement. Don't lose time mate !

Thanks! I know you had a similar issue, did you return it where you bought it or did you open ticket with Line6? Emailed my Sweetwater rep, see what he says. Guess I will open a support ticket too, see what my options are.

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Seems to be a lot of faulty scribble strips over the last week. Hopefully it's a dodgy batch rather than that they are simply terrible quality and unreliable. My Helix has been on preorder for over a month now and with so many teething issues i'm wondering whether to go ahead with it still or not.

One thing I can say, having just received it.. It's killing me to have to send it back!! And wait for an unknown time.. Because it sounds incredible. I had it cranked up through a pair of L2t speakers, and it sounds great at loud volumes. I also really like toggling between presets and stompbox mode. Will report back when I have a replacement..

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I have emailed Sweetwater and opened a support ticket with Line6, and will hope for the best.. :)

I did the same thing, sent ticket to L6 and inform Nakas (local L6 representative) And will sent it back asap. I also loved it, and I hope to get a replacement soon enough, I will have time for less than 2 months to play with it.

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Sad thing is, after the guy mentioned it may take less than a week turnaround, I find out it's ups ground they used from South Carolina to California. That's a week just to get it there. Picked it up earlier today.

 

Claim it's going to be a one day repair, but if it ships back to me via ground, then I'm without it for over 2 weeks. Dohh.

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This is appalling and clearly not anywhere near an isolated incident now.

 

I'm actually glad for the delay on my preorder now as I hope this dodgy scribble strip thing is a batch issue rather than just crappy components used.

 

It'd be good for line 6 to comment on it but I don't suppose they will.

 

People keep jumping to defend line 6 as its a new product but I never see any such problems with boss, digitech or zoom products when newly released either with hardware or performing firmware updates. The fact that it's possible to brick the helix with a failed firmware update instead of having a safe boot mode to reflash is utter madness in this day and age.

 

I'd have given up on the idea of helix and cancelled my preorder by now if it weren't for all the reports that despite initial problems it sounds AMAZING!

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Sad thing is, after the guy mentioned it may take less than a week turnaround, I find out it's ups ground they used from South Carolina to California. That's a week just to get it there. Picked it up earlier today.

 

Claim it's going to be a one day repair, but if it ships back to me via ground, then I'm without it for over 2 weeks. Dohh.

Yup, same here. I drove mine to a UPS hub yesterday, it's on the way, tracking says it will get to L6 on the 11th. Sadly, I have emailed my Sweetwater rep twice aboit it and gotten zero reply. Not sure why, they are usually way more on point. Oh well, c'est la vie.

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One quick note for anyone else dealing with sending things back to Line6 for repair:

 

Update your shipping address info with them before you do the ticket. I forgot to give them my work address for shipping, and without asking me, or verifying, they set up the pickup for my home address, and I wasn't going to be at home. I also discovered I can't just drop this type of pick up service off at any UPS store, it has to be a specific hub and then they had to wait till the driver returned with the call tags. So I drove an extra hour to get it dealt with and dropped it off myself.

 

Signing off...

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This is appalling and clearly not anywhere near an isolated incident now.

 

I'm actually glad for the delay on my preorder now as I hope this dodgy scribble strip thing is a batch issue rather than just crappy components used.

 

It'd be good for line 6 to comment on it but I don't suppose they will.

 

People keep jumping to defend line 6 as its a new product but I never see any such problems with boss, digitech or zoom products when newly released either with hardware or performing firmware updates. The fact that it's possible to brick the helix with a failed firmware update instead of having a safe boot mode to reflash is utter madness in this day and age.

 

I'd have given up on the idea of helix and cancelled my preorder by now if it weren't for all the reports that despite initial problems it sounds AMAZING!

 

I'm sure I'll be accused of defending Line 6, but, whatever. I've been called worse in my life. There are four people commenting here in regards to bad scribble strips. I'm sure the overall number is more than that, but it does not seem like a completely widespread issue. I'm not minimizing the issue at all, but these are by definition, isolated incidents. Of course it always sucks to have stuff not work. I can't deny that. I've had it myself. All I'm saying is that you're always taking a risk when buying any electronic item. I have never seen one electronic item with reviews online where someone hasn't had a bad experience.

 

It's not my job to convince anyone to buy anything. I'm just saying that personally, it would take a lot more than this to dissuade me to cancel an order.

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Phil_m, we they are not  4 persons only, http://line6.com/support/topic/17526-brand-new-helix-with-display-faults/and you comment on this one, we are more, and also there are users on the TGP that have the same prob but refuse to sent it back , either cause they believe it is minor problem, or because they afraid that the new helix they will get for replacement will be worse than the one they already have. 

 

I agree with you that there is always a risk to any electronic device to be a lemon, but at my 10 years with line 6 I found that the risk is 50-50, rather than 10% of the other companies...

 

Now why I get L6 items? Cause for the price they are the best, and they can connect to each other, and have some abilities that only the L6 has.

I don't hate L6,  I don't want to cancel my replacement, but it should be better if the QC would improve.

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Thanks for sharing your experience "CF". I was wondering what a "scribble strip" was when I clicked this thread, lol. I would've called a 'footswitch display" hahahah. I like "scribble strip" better, sounds cooler.

 

I hope you all get happy soon. I'm sure Line 6 isn't happy about it either. From experience they helped me quite a bit when I had problems with a DT.

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While it's not ideal, I will try to see the glass as 'half full' rather than 'half empty'; and tell myself my "brand new yet soon to be repaired in California by Line6 Helix" is likely a better bet than a "brand new but I hope it doesn't break Helix"... Classic rationalization, of course!. Though since I don't intend to return it to Sweetwater for a refund, the delay isn't causing me undue distress. For someone trying to decide if they will keep it within a 30-45 day return window time frame, however, it would be a deal breaker. They wouldn't have time to ship it off (UPS ground) to Line6 and hope they get it back in time to sort out if they want to keep it. They would have to just send it back and wait for a new unit to become available. Such is life. Supply, let me introduce you to Demand, have you two met?

 

I had the footswitch failure happen on my X3Live back in the day, sent it off to Line6 and they ended up repairing and replacing all the footswitch assemblies, or light pipes or whatever those plastic things between the switch and the board that went bad were called. It worked fine after that, and actually made for a decent selling point when the HD500 came along. These guys do stand behind their products when things go wrong.

 

I do expect this scribble strip thing is going to be a bigger failure rate % issue than anyone wants to admit, along the lines of the L2t fan redesign, and the X3L switch lightpipe failures, and the HD500 switch failures, and the M13/M9 switch failures, and all the other little parts issues. They don't all fail at once, some will never fail, and the rate of failure seems random, but it's there none the less. Hence companies charging decent $$(between $90 to $145) to do aftermarket footswitch repairs for the M9 and M13 series.. http://www.jhv3.com/m-series-mods/

 

These are not as much mods, as repairing flawed design footswitches that *will* eventually break, sooner or later, newer or useder.

How much are you going to be willing to pay to JHV3 to repair and replace your defective Helix scribble strips, Hmmmmm...?

 

At some point, ideally, they just will be making Helix with upgraded scribble strip design, and hopefully issue a free recall for everyone to get their scribble strips replaced or repaired for no charge for the life of the product, etc. 

 

I certainly hope I am wrong! But pattern is as pattern does. That being said, this Helix thing sounds amazing, and I can't wait to have it back!! :)

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While it's not ideal, I will try to see the glass as 'half full' rather than 'half empty'; and tell myself my "brand new yet soon to be repaired in California by Line6 Helix" is likely a better bet than a "brand new but I hope it doesn't break Helix"... Classic rationalization, of course!. Though since I don't intend to return it to Sweetwater for a refund, the delay isn't causing me undue distress. For someone trying to decide if they will keep it within a 30-45 day return window time frame, however, it would be a deal breaker. They wouldn't have time to ship it off (UPS ground) to Line6 and hope they get it back in time to sort out if they want to keep it. They would have to just send it back and wait for a new unit to become available. Such is life. Supply, let me introduce you to Demand, have you two met?

 

I had the footswitch failure happen on my X3Live back in the day, sent it off to Line6 and they ended up repairing and replacing all the footswitch assemblies, or light pipes or whatever those plastic things between the switch and the board that went bad were called. It worked fine after that, and actually made for a decent selling point when the HD500 came along. These guys do stand behind their products when things go wrong.

 

I do expect this scribble strip thing is going to be a bigger failure rate % issue than anyone wants to admit, along the lines of the L2t fan redesign, and the X3L switch lightpipe failures, and the HD500 switch failures, and the M13/M9 switch failures, and all the other little parts issues. They don't all fail at once, some will never fail, and the rate of failure seems random, but it's there none the less. Hence companies charging decent $$(between $90 to $145) to do aftermarket footswitch repairs for the M9 and M13 series.. http://www.jhv3.com/m-series-mods/

 

These are not as much mods, as repairing flawed design footswitches that *will* eventually break, sooner or later, newer or useder.

How much are you going to be willing to pay to JHV3 to repair and replace your defective Helix scribble strips, Hmmmmm...?

 

At some point, ideally, they just will be making Helix with upgraded scribble strip design, and hopefully issue a free recall for everyone to get their scribble strips replaced or repaired for no charge for the life of the product, etc. 

 

I certainly hope I am wrong! But pattern is as pattern does. That being said, this Helix thing sounds amazing, and I can't wait to have it back!! :)

 

It may be more widespread than I think. I have no idea of knowing, really. There are 13 scribble strips on every Helix, though, so that's a lot of scribble strips out there. I'm sure there's always a potential of bad batches getting in the line.

 

These little displays don't seem to be all that different than what the displays are on the M-series, and there have been occasional report of issues with them, it doesn't seem to be a huge issue with them. I'm sure Line 6 cares about these sort of things more than anyone else simply because this stuff affects their reputation. Every problem can be reported on the internet somewhere, and things that don't affect a ton of people can appear to.

 

Personally, here's my anecdotal data regarding reliability of my Line 6 devices with the plunger style switches - I've owned the X3L, the HD500, two M13s, two M9s, and an M5. I've not had an issue with any of the switches on any of those devices. My first M13 is over 7 years old now (The reason I have two has nothing to do with reliability issue - one is a test unit, the other I bought).

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It may be more widespread than I think. I have no idea of knowing, really.

 

These little displays don't seem to be all that different than what the displays are on the M-series, and there have been occasional report of issues with them, it doesn't seem to be a huge issue with them.

 

Personally, here's my anecdotal data regarding reliability of my Line 6 devices with the plunger style switches - I've owned the X3L, the HD500, two M13s, two M9s, and an M5. I've not had an issue with any of the switches on any of those devices. My first M13 is over 7 years old now (The reason I have two has nothing to do with reliability issue - one is a test unit, the other I bought).

Yeah, very true! I will stick with the "think positive" approach, I am guessing it really is just a small % of the total that have these issues. Just seems like a bigger deal all of a sudden that it's happened to me! Food for thought, the universe telling me to chill out.

 

Cheers!

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Mine should be delivered to Line 6 for repair today or tomorrow, so I'll find out how long it takes to fix soon.

Then there's the waiting for UPS ground from California to South Carolina... DoHHH

 

Well, for what it's worth looks like they are shipping mine back today, guessing it's going out with the UPS pickups tonight from the looks of it! :) When I see an estimated delivery date, will report back. And, in other news, turns out my Sweetwater rep resigned! I sent a few emails and never heard back, was starting to wonder.. Got a call today from my new sales rep, so I was able to let him know what was going on with L6 handling the repair. All is well that ends well! I didn't want to get my hopes too far up - I have the house to myself weekend of 1/23-1/24, and (fingers crossed) I should have me Helix back before then! 

 

Happy Dance, take 2 :)

 

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Can't believe it. Waited almost 6 months for this to get released. Bought it in Canada, brought it down to India like a newborn and after just 2 weeks of playing it a scribble strip gets a vertical column of dead pixels :(

Line 6 service transferred me to Indian Line 6 reps who are nothing more than a one man outpost with a rude accountant who doubles up as a receptionist. Just my luck I guess.

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Same for me - vertical black line on one of the scribble strip after 2 month of usage.

I don't want to repair it now, as I think this gonna happen with few more screens after some time, so I will wait and replace all broken screens at one time.

Shame.

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Same for me - vertical black line on one of the scribble strip after 2 month of usage.

I don't want to repair it now, as I think this gonna happen with few more screens after some time, so I will wait and replace all broken screens at one time.

Shame.

Where are you located? If you are in the States, L6 will quickly repair it, as they did mine and Glideman's. If you are elsewhere other than the US, they have a different route for replacement through original vendor. Start with opening a service ticket with L6, go from there..

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Where are you located? If you are in the States, L6 will quickly repair it, as they did mine and Glideman's. If you are elsewhere other than the US, they have a different route for replacement through original vendor. Start with opening a service ticket with L6, go from there..

I'm from Ukraine.

I've already contacted official vendor and they could repair this screen quite quickly.

However, as I said, I feel this gonna happen again, as seems like this is common Helix issue.

So I will wait few more months and replace this corrupted screen and (hopefully not!) newly corrupted screens.

 

This one black line does not annoy me much, however this does not correspond with statement "tour grade equipment" at all...

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I'm from Ukraine.

I've already contacted official vendor and they could repair this screen quite quickly.

However, as I said, I feel this gonna happen again, as seems like this is common Helix issue.

So I will wait few more months and replace this corrupted screen and (hopefully not!) newly corrupted screens.

 

This one black line does not annoy me much, however this does not correspond with statement "tour grade equipment" at all...

 

I remember reading, I think somewhere on these forums, that the problem is not the scribble strips themselves, but with the ribbon cables connecting them, pointing to a manufacturing process problem. Fixable for the future, but surely degrades the label tour grade equipment somewhat.

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Fixable for the future, but surely degrades the label tour grade equipment somewhat.

Well, I'm trying to think positive. If everything else except scribble strips is "tour grade" then it's good.

I could always use good old sticky tape as scribble strip on top of broken scribble strips display. :D

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I'm from Ukraine.

I've already contacted official vendor and they could repair this screen quite quickly.

However, as I said, I feel this gonna happen again, as seems like this is common Helix issue.

So I will wait few more months and replace this corrupted screen and (hopefully not!) newly corrupted screens.

 

This one black line does not annoy me much, however this does not correspond with statement "tour grade equipment" at all...

I believe the repair might not be to the screen, but possibly to a connector cable from screen to something inside. Just a guess..

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I believe the repair might not be to the screen, but possibly to a connector cable from screen to something inside. Just a guess..

 

Even something as small as human sweat/oil on a component can cause this. For instance if a worker used bare hands to assemble it and/or touched the contacting parts could indeed cause an issue later. Even a drop of sweat in the right spot can cause an issue down the line.

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Even something as small as human sweat/oil on a component can cause this. For instance if a worker used bare hands to assemble it and/or touched the contacting parts could indeed cause an issue later. Even a drop of sweat in the right spot can cause an issue down the line.

Not an excuse for me! :)

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Even something as small as human sweat/oil on a component can cause this. For instance if a worker used bare hands to assemble it and/or touched the contacting parts could indeed cause an issue later. Even a drop of sweat in the right spot can cause an issue down the line.

 

When I took the bottom plate off mine to lubricate the expression pedal, it looks like they use big globs of hot glue on the ribbon cable connections, presumably so they don't become loose.

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When I took the bottom plate off mine to lubricate the expression pedal, it looks like they use big globs of hot glue on the ribbon cable connections, presumably so they don't become loose.

 

I guess if you need to get that cable disconnected you might have to soften the glue with heat.

 

I remember working on a boat and the wire harness connections were so water tight I had to use a small piece of wire in the seal while plugging them together in order to let air out otherwise they would not lock together, lol. Also there was dielectric grease all over it. Now those were some tight connections. Said connectors were low voltage feeds so protecting them from the environment was critical so you don't get stuck in the water.

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  • 10 months later...

Scribble strip #10 went out on me on the gig last night. Did a factory reset, no help. This is after updating to 2.10 3 days ago. Could it be a firmware issue, or most likely physical?

 

Have not seen any other reports of this yet so it is most likely physical and coincidental. I would definitely try backing up and reflashing the firmware or even rolling back to experiment and find out though.

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