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zooey

FYI, Musician's Friend SDOTD is a Variaxe JTV69S for $999.99

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Actually, it's $699.99 right now as their Stupid Deal of the Day, which is a great price.

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  • List: $1,999.99
  • Your Price: $ 999.99

 

 

It's $699 if you look at this link: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/stupid

 

And, actually if you put it in your cart from the normal link, the price will change to $699.

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Hmmm... tempting... but I have far too many guitars as it is.

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Anyone using one of these as their main axe and recommend it with Helix?

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Yes.

Quite a few at this forum actually.

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Anyone using one of these as their main axe and recommend it with Helix?

 

Not exactly this, but I've been using my JTV69US as my main gigging guitar for over three years. I have the maple neck on mine. I've never tried one of Korean JTV69S's with a maple neck. I'd be interested to see how close it feels to the US version. I love the neck on mine.

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Thanks for making me spend $700 I didn't have guys! Great deal though.

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There are some pretty crappy reviews about Musicians Friend sending out defective guitars and these guitars having a lot of QC issues.

 

Does anyone here have any experience?

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There are some pretty crappy reviews about Musicians Friend sending out defective guitars and these guitars having a lot of QC issues.

 

Does anyone here have any experience?

 

I saw those reviews as well. I have gotten repackaged merchandise sold as "new" from different retailers on occasion (this is not just a MF issue).  I am hoping I will get a decent one. I will try to post back after I receive it.

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Anyone using one of these as their main axe and recommend it with Helix?

 

Yep, I currently own 17 guitars and the JTV69 and my EBMM Majesty are my main axes.  If I had to get rid of all but 2 these would stay.  If I had to get rid of all but 1 it would be a tough call between the 2.

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Not a Variaxe guy, don't know much about htis or how good a deal it is, but here you go...
 
 
Line 6 Variax JTV-69S Electric Guitar with Single Coil Pickups  Black Maple Fingerboard

 

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/line-6-variax-jtv-69s-electric-guitar-with-single-coil-pickups/h90033000002002

 

 

 

It's $699 if you look at this link: http://www.musiciansfriend.com/stupid

 

And, actually if you put it in your cart from the normal link, the price will change to $699.

 

Ordered, that is exactly the model I have been looking for, thanks zooey & phil_m!

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Do we need a special cable to connect it to the helix and power it or does it one with?

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The one it comes with isn't really gigable.  (if that is a word)  You will want to buy a good one.  Try Best-Tronics.  They make a good one and it's a better deal than the Line6 one.

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The one it comes with isn't really gigable.  (if that is a word)  You will want to buy a good one.  Try Best-Tronics.  They make a good one and it's a better deal than the Line6 one.

 

+1  these guys are the best!

 

http://btpa.com/Line-6-Variax/

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Are there any wireless options for using the Variaxe with the Helix?

 

Sure, you can use the Variax's 1/4" outs with any regular wireless system, but as far as controlling the Variax, no dice...

 

Read it and lol, or weep... http://line6.com/support/topic/19503-question-for-the-forum-about-wireless-variax/?hl=wireless

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So we can use the supplied cable that comes with it and then get the better one from btpa.com when we are sure the guitar is working fine and we are keeping it?

 

Also can you run two guitars at once (acoustic model and tele) at the same time or is it either/or?

 

Thanks guys!

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I love my two JTV guitars, I have both the 59 and a 69. I have about 25 guitars in my collection and the JTVs have been the only guitars I take out in the last few years. If I ever find a great deal on another 59 I will buy one, that guitar just feels like it was custom built for my hands.

 

-Max

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Anyone using one of these as their main axe and recommend it with Helix?

 

Yup!  Great guitar, bought it on Guitar Center's site a month or so ago with a 20% off coupon.  Plays very well with the Helix

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I love my two JTV guitars, I have both the 59 and a 69. I have about 25 guitars in my collection and the JTVs have been the only guitars I take out in the last few years. If I ever find a great deal on another 59 I will buy one, that guitar just feels like it was custom built for my hands.

 

-Max

 

I have the maple neck JTV69s on the way. How do you like the neck on the JTV69? People have me a bit concerned with all the posts describing the neck as a tree trunk and talking about how they swapped it out. I like a good fast neck, closer to slim than fat. Are people exaggerating the neck issue?

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Mine is arriving Friday. Any tips for set up etc from current owners?

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I have the maple neck JTV69s on the way. How do you like the neck on the JTV69? People have me a bit concerned with all the posts describing the neck as a tree trunk and talking about how they swapped it out. I like a good fast neck, closer to slim than fat. Are people exaggerating the neck issue?

It doesn't feel like a regular strat neck to me, but it isn't uncomfortable. I use the JTV-69 mostly as a backup guitar, the 59 just fits my hands better.

 

-Max

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@HonestOpinion the neck is fairly beefy. I own a JTV69HSS. With that said, it is quite playable. The neck comments are accurate, but for me it works fine...

 

My only issue with the guitar is its weight. It is a heavy guitar in my opinion....

 

Anyway, you will like the guitar...it is a good purchase, I would imagine you will be quite happy...at $699.00 that is a good price.

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I like a good fast neck, closer to slim than fat. Are people exaggerating the neck issue?

Exaggerating? No...not remotely. Of course it is subjective, but the dimensions are what they are. For me it's fat where it should be thin, and silly narrow where it should be wide. Fat profile, and a VERY narrow nut width. Smaller than almost anything else you can find hanging on the wall at your local MegaloMusic. The result is rather claustrophobic string spacing for open position chords. Small hands might love it. I couldn't stand it. Off it went after about 6 weeks. Now with a Strat neck, the profile is no longer Louisville Sluggerish, and the nut width is appropriate...not to mention consistent with just about everything else out there (with the exception of ancient/vintage stuff that I have no interest in anyway). Completely different instrument.

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@HonestOpinion the neck is fairly beefy. I own a JTV69HSS. With that said, it is quite playable. The neck comments are accurate, but for me it works fine...

 

My only issue with the guitar is its weight. It is a heavy guitar in my opinion....

 

Anyway, you will like the guitar...it is a good purchase, I would imagine you will be quite happy...at $699.00 that is a good price.

Plus he's got $300 left over from the usual cost to shop with over at Warmoth...;)

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So we can use the supplied cable that comes with it and then get the better one from btpa.com when we are sure the guitar is working fine and we are keeping it?

 

Also can you run two guitars at once (acoustic model and tele) at the same time or is it either/or?

 

Thanks guys!

You can use the mag pickups and a Variax model simultaneously.  I do this to swap between an acoustic sound and a distorted guitar via the volume pedal on the Helix.  You cannot run 2 Variax models as you asked.

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Thanks everyone for the feedback on the JTV69 neck. Hopefully it will be tolerable to good enough, if not, as pointed out the savings can go towards a Warmoth or Mighty Mite neck.  Sorry to hear more folks don't love the stock neck.  I owned the original Variax when it first came out and although the modeling was super cool I found the guitar construction lacking and I ended up selling it in short order. My impression has always been that the JTV model was an effort to make a high quality guitar with L6 electronics and it seems it is other than some poor design choices on the neck (the most important component to me). I hope L6 has listened to all the feedback on the neck and incorporated it into changing the design for future models.

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My impression has always been that the JTV model was an effort to make a high quality guitar with L6 electronics and it seems it is other than some poor design choices on the neck (the most important component to me). I hope L6 has listened to all the feedback on the neck and incorporated it into changing the design for future models.

The neck profile, I can forgive. Some guys like a chunky neck, others want shredder thin. It's the nut width that baffles me. Nobody has made anything that narrow in decades...and imho this probably contributed to the E strings slipping off the ends of the frets on some of the early models. I think they were installing nuts that were slotted for a more standard spacing, resulting in both E strings sitting too close to the edge of the fretboard.

 

The string spacing is really close. Made open chords damn near impossible without muting one or more open strings...and I don't have stubby little fingers, either. Only other guitar I've ever played that was that narrow was an ancient Rickenbacker my dad had when he was a kid...I could never play that thing either. You'll either love it or hate it...not much middle ground.

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I have the maple neck JTV69s on the way. How do you like the neck on the JTV69? People have me a bit concerned with all the posts describing the neck as a tree trunk and talking about how they swapped it out. I like a good fast neck, closer to slim than fat. Are people exaggerating the neck issue?

 

I'm sure they're being honest but I also know that for a lot of people, including me, the neck is just fine and a pleasure to play.  I haven't even pondered swapping it out.

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I'm sure they're being honest but I also know that for a lot of people, including me, the neck is just fine and a pleasure to play.  I haven't even pondered swapping it out.

 

Thanks, good to hear, I hope to fall into that camp but I tend to take heed when a significant number of people describe the same issue.

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I am happy with the stock neck on my JTV69, if you want to hear from more people that like it as it is.  I tried my guitar in-store (Anderton's in the UK) before I bought it as I wanted to be sure.

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I received my Variax JTV69s and I thought I would share my initial impressions. First off, I am delighted to say that as of now I don't have any major problems with the radius or the feel of the neck. It is a bit on the chunky side (I would prefer a smaller radius) but I rather like it and I do not foresee having to swap it out. However, I have to agree with the observations about the strings being positioned in the nut (perhaps due to the design of the neck) perhaps a bit too close to the edge of the fretboard. It seems almost as if the neck is narrower at the nut and wider at the bridge end than many standard necks (my imagination?).  One advantage is that it is quite easy to get your thumb over the top of the fretboard for those Jimi Hendrix chord fingerings. I will have to see if this creates an issue with either the low or high E string slipping over the edge of the fretboard in regular use. I have a standard guitar that has this problem and there is nothing like having your high E string stuck under a fretwire over the fretboard edge to put a screeching stop to your solo as you correct it. I have not had the guitar long enough to form an opinion on that potential (non?)issue yet. I would say to those considering the JTV, that depending on your hand size, finger thickness, etc., you may find yourself just fine with or even quite happy with the neck. 

 

The setup from the factory seemed satisfactory although I believe the strings it came with are 10's and I use 9's. I anticipate possibly having to do another setup when the strings get changed out and I have heard some people complain about slippage in the nut and issues with 9's. Hopefully that will not be an issue. Is anyone using 9's with their JTV69s?

 

Have to say, a ton of versatility and way more convenient being able to do alternate tunings with the turn of a knob, and being able to control Helix parameters with the volume and tone controls is great!  I use guitars with whammy bars and even a simple Drop-D tuning has often forced me to do a full retune both when dropping and going back to standard tuning.  Flipping a knob on the Variax is a lot quicker and easier and is one less guitar I might need to drag to a gig. I will be adding an Open E custom tuning, not quite sure why they did not include this but it is easy enough to swap it in for a tuning you won't use. The acoustic sounds are ok but to be honest they sound more like an electric guitar EQ'd through an acoustic guitar pedal emulator than a true acoustic. Expect to have to spend a lot of time setting up a Helix preset and the PA to get you close to anything that sounds like a true acoustic. I was expecting this however and am not disappointed. For the occasional acoustic "sound" it is not bad but it will not replace your acoustic for the real deal, especially for rhythm, it is more convincing on finger-picked passages. Slap a little chorus, reverb, and delay on and you have a reasonable acoustic facsimile.

 

The models and mag pickups sound quite good for the most part. One small complaint I have is the VDI cable that comes with the package is really cheesy, lightweight, and lacks the XLR type collar that the better cables sold separately have; it is essentially a slightly enhanced standard ethernet design. You are probably going to want to buy a better VDI cable but they can be had relatively inexpensively. I think L6 should have spent the extra couple of bucks to include a higher quality VDI cable. The gig bag although perfectly adequate is not as well padded or as nice as the one that came on the original Variax, guess they saved a few bucks there, surprising as the JTV is a much nicer guitar, but at least they are not selling the bag as an accessory. On the plus side, the Helix powers the Variax from the VDI connection which means you can operate without a battery, less guitar weight and no drained battery in the middle of a set, me likee. Overall, my first impression of this axe is quite good although I have not had it long enough for this review to hold any substantial weight. I will try to report back when I have had more time to suss it out. Helix + Variax = "lots 'o fun"!

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Mine arrives tomorrow. Did you update the firmware? How do you do it?

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I received my Variax JTV69s and I thought I would share my initial impressions. First off, I am delighted to say that as of now I don't have any major problems with the radius or the feel of the neck. It is a bit on the chunky side (I would prefer a smaller radius) but I rather like it and I do not foresee having to swap it out. However, I have to agree with the observations about the strings being positioned in the nut (perhaps due to the design of the neck) perhaps a bit too close to the edge of the fretboard. It seems almost as if the neck is narrower at the nut and wider at the bridge end than many standard necks (my imagination?).

 

No, you're not imagining it...that's precisely what I had said earlier. The nut is as narrow as it gets. You'd have a hard time trying to find one narrower.

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One small complaint I have is the VDI cable that comes with the package is really cheesy, lightweight, and lacks the XLR type collar that the better cables sold separately have; it is essentially a slightly enhanced standard ethernet design. You are probably going to want to buy a better VDI cable but they can be had relatively inexpensively. 

 

The cable included is intended to be only used with the USB adaptor for Workbench, and the collar would prevent you plugging it into that interface.  Do not use that cable for anything else as if you are moving around pulling the unreinforced end the wrong way in the socket will break the socket in your Helix or JTV and neither is something you want to do.

 

Buy a Ethercon cable - it is what the VDI hardware is without the Line 6 name, and can be bought from lots of places

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The cable included is intended to be only used with the USB adaptor for Workbench, and the collar would prevent you plugging it into that interface.  Do not use that cable for anything else as if you are moving around pulling the unreinforced end the wrong way in the socket will break the socket in your Helix or JTV and neither is something you want to do.

 

Buy a Ethercon cable - it is what the VDI hardware is without the Line 6 name, and can be bought from lots of places

 

Ah, makes sense, luckily I already had an old Line6 VDI cable. Would have been nice if they had included one. Thanks for the info on the generic cable, will probably purchase that as backup.

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