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Variax Acoustic Technology in Spider V - C'mon Helix update!


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Just a glimmer of acoustic hope and gentle prod to Line 6 :)

 

http://line6.com/spider-v/

 

Spider V doesn’t just sound great with electric guitars—it absolutely shines with acoustics. Enhanced acoustic presets are designed with Variax® acoustic technology to bring out the best tonal qualities of your acoustic guitar. Dialed-in effects like delay and reverb will help you take an average acoustic sound to a higher level. Spider V delivers acoustic tone with depth and clarity that regular electric amps just can’t match.

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Just a glimmer of acoustic hope and gentle prod to Line 6 :)

 

http://line6.com/spider-v/

 

Spider V doesn’t just sound great with electric guitars—it absolutely shines with acoustics. Enhanced acoustic presets are designed with Variax® acoustic technology to bring out the best tonal qualities of your acoustic guitar. Dialed-in effects like delay and reverb will help you take an average acoustic sound to a higher level. Spider V delivers acoustic tone with depth and clarity that regular electric amps just can’t match.

 

What the f#%$^? Look what they loaded the new Spider V up with. Granted I have a vested interest in it but it seems like a bit (lot?) of the attention that could be going into the Helix is going elsewhere.  We have been asking for features like acoustic presets, amps, and effects (already on the Spider V) for a year now. And look at the number of cabs, amps, effects, wireless, drum loops, and other features on this thing. I know it takes longer to develop HX models but I hope some of these features make their way over to the Helix and soon. I know some of these features won't be targeted for a pro level device like the Helix but I hope L6 does not neglect us with their new products coming out.

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What the f#%$^? Look what they loaded the new Spider V up with. Granted I have a vested interest in it but it seems like a bit (lot?) of the attention that could be going into the Helix is going elsewhere. We have been asking for features like acoustic presets, amps, and effects (already on the Spider V) for a year now. And look at the number of cabs, amps, effects, wireless, drum loops, and other features on this thing. I know it takes longer to develop HX models but I hope some of these features make their way over to the Helix and soon. I know some of these features won't be targeted for a pro level device like the Helix but I hope L6 does not neglect us with their new products coming out.

These acoustic amps aren't anything new... They're the same models that were on the X3 series, POD Farm, AMPLIFi and Firehawk. This is a bit like a Tesla owner complaining that his neighbor's Toyota Camry has some feature his Tesla doesn't.

 

I actually much prefer the sound of an acoustic IR versus any of these previous Line 6 acoustic amps, personally.

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Nah, not really complaining as Helix is the gift that keeps on giving.  But that is the second L6 product I am aware of that has some acoustic modeling tech built in...the other being the acoustic guitar body modeling in Stagesource L2t/L3t.  I'm just sayin' hook a Helix up yo!

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These acoustic amps aren't anything new... They're the same models that were on the X3 series, POD Farm, AMPLIFi and Firehawk. 

 

 

 

Obviously I haven't tried the S5, but the site description says "Variax Acoustic technology" which sounds more like acoustic guitar modeling, not amp.

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Obviously I haven't tried the S5, but the site description says "Variax Acoustic technology" which sounds more like acoustic guitar modeling, not amp.

 

You can download and install the Spider V editor app if you want to actually look at the amp models it has - they are identical to the amp models on the AMPLIFi. This "Variax Acoustic Technology" is referring to the "Line 6 Piezacoustic 2" model, though. It's a model that was in the XT/X3 series. Here's how it was described in the X3 model gallery (http://l6c-acdn.line6.net/data/6/0a060b316ac34f0593be902d6/application/pdf/POD%20X3%20Model%20Gallery%20(%20Rev%20B%20).pdf)

 

Line 6 Piezacoustic 2 – This one is designed to work with the piezo output of solidbody electrics that have one of those newfangled bridges with the ‘acoustic’ pickup built in. Since you don’t have to worry about the body shaking itself to pieces with feedback on that type of guitar, we’ve cooked up this model with more low-mids and low frequencies.

 

There's also a model called "Line 6 Variax Acoustic". That was a model designed to work with the Variax Acoustic models.

 

Line 6 Variax Acoustic – One of the great features of the Variax Digital Modeling Guitars from Line 6 are their models of acoustic instruments. These sounds are best appreciated through a full range monitor or P.A., due to their high frequency content. This Amp Model was created in order to allow the Variax’s acoustic models to sound as full-range as possible through the speakers of typical guitar amps. This can come in handy when you’re using an acoustic model from a Variax, and listening to it through a guitar amp’s speakers. Keep in mind that since this model provides a large amount of high frequency boost (to compensate for the natural roll-off of typical guitar speakers) and overdriving a model playing an acoustic guitar is not usually a desired thing, this model will likely appear softer than most of its compatriots. If you need more gain, the Drive knob can be used to add some tube preamplification.

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I used to have a Pod X3 Live and used it with both a Variax 300 and a piezo-equipped Martin D28. I recall using both of the above amp models with those guitars and managed to get reasonable acoustic tones.

 

However, using the same guitars (well, a JTV rather than V300) I am able to get much more realistic acoustic tones out of Helix using no amp. The availability of IRs also makes a great difference in my Helix acoustic tones. I am pretty sure that if Helix had this 'Variax Acoustic Technology' very few if any Helix owners would actually use it. What we already have is way better imho.

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I used to have a Pod X3 Live and used it with both a Variax 300 and a piezo-equipped Martin D28. I recall using both of the above amp models with those guitars and managed to get reasonable acoustic tones.

 

However, using the same guitars (well, a JTV rather than V300) I am able to get much more realistic acoustic tones out of Helix using no amp. The availability of IRs also makes a great difference in my Helix acoustic tones. I am pretty sure that if Helix had this 'Variax Acoustic Technology' very few if any Helix owners would actually use it. What we already have is way better imho.

 

Okay then, the tears of disappointment are drying :)

 

It sounds like I shouldn't look to Line 6 to provide Variax acoustic body modeling via Helix, and should turn to IR's or an actual Variax.

 

Thanks.

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I used to have a Pod X3 Live and used it with both a Variax 300 and a piezo-equipped Martin D28. I recall using both of the above amp models with those guitars and managed to get reasonable acoustic tones.

 

However, using the same guitars (well, a JTV rather than V300) I am able to get much more realistic acoustic tones out of Helix using no amp. The availability of IRs also makes a great difference in my Helix acoustic tones. I am pretty sure that if Helix had this 'Variax Acoustic Technology' very few if any Helix owners would actually use it. What we already have is way better imho.

 

Would this be something that would be possible if I were to put it on Ideascale for user voting?

 

It seems these could be setup like Helix HX Cab blocks to let you pick the acoustic guitar type (and maybe other acoustic instruments), body and top levels, mic(s) types, input pickup type, maybe a dual acoustic block like a dual cab block.

 

I would see these featuring better usability and control than 3rd party acoustic IR's, similar to the way Helix Cab blocks have more features and controls than cab IR's.

 

Maybe this is a conflict with the Variax platform, which I would understand.

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Judging by the sounds of those new demo videos i was not impressed at all by the tones coming from that amp.  

 

Chad informs me  the modelling is from the Pod X3 level product - so not even HD.   I'll pass.  

 

Seems they're keeping the Spider name for  Pod V1 level modelling - Firehawk for HD level models - and I guess all HELIX model products will from now on have HELIX in the name ? would make sense to me anyway. 

 

So a HELIX head and cabinet would be mega cool.  For those with a bad back - its better to not carry combos ( the Firehawk- like Fender Twin - weighs a ton ) but have the amp in one unit and the cabinet just being the speakers - as a separate unit.

 

To put in the boot of a car etc etc. 

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Chuckle, I knew I was going to get slapped for my comments about the Spider V.  And from what people are saying it may not be near as egregious a situation as it appeared to be when I read through the feature set. I appreciate Silverhead's comments regarding the Variax acoustic features in the Spider although I still think we could use some amps, cabs, and effects specifically for acoustic on the Helix. Perhaps I over-reacted. However, I do hope L6 continues its support for new features, amps, and effects for the Helix. The huge array of products Line6 supports and develops makes me nervous. DI is always in danger of getting spread too thin  :huh:   Just getting new firmware withdrawal. My apologies, going back to the decaf for this week. 

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These acoustic amps aren't anything new... They're the same models that were on the X3 series, POD Farm, AMPLIFi and Firehawk. This is a bit like a Tesla owner complaining that his neighbor's Toyota Camry has some feature his Tesla doesn't.

 

I actually much prefer the sound of an acoustic IR versus any of these previous Line 6 acoustic amps, personally.

 

Thanks for the sanity check on the acoustic situation Phil_m. I get it, The Helix has way more potential in almost every area including the acoustic sound. Still.. one would prefer if some of the newest whizbang features show up on your Tesla rather than your neighbor's Camry, and granted many of them such as Snapshots and even the tuner have done just that.

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First: giphy.gif

Wait and see... kids' stuff...

 

You are right, I can see why some of this stuff like built in wireless and drum loops was not included on a pro level device like the Helix but it is darn cool nonetheless. I am looking forward to similar innovation on the Helix with features and amps/effects more targeted at the pro market.

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Chuckle, I knew I was going to get slapped for my comments about the Spider V.  And from what people are saying it may not be near as egregious a situation as it appeared to be when I read through the feature set. I appreciate Silverhead's comments regarding the Variax acoustic features in the Spider although I still think we could use some amps, cabs, and effects specifically for acoustic on the Helix. Perhaps I over-reacted. However, I do hope L6 continues its support for new features, amps, and effects for the Helix. The huge array of products Line6 supports and develops makes me nervous. DI is always in danger of getting spread too thin  :huh:   Just getting new firmware withdrawal. My apologies, going back to the decaf for this week.

 

Don't worry - you'll have plenty of opportunity to lament the fact that Line 6 continues to develop and release new products, meaning that scarce resources are being redirected from the next-to-latest product updates and enhancements. In my many years around these forums I have never failed to see it happen. A new product is released and the owners of the previously newest product are aghast and feeling that they have been abandoned. You can still see it occasionally in the Firehawk and POD HD forums although it was louder when Helix was first released. And it will appear in the Helix forums when Line 6 next releases new technology, as opposed to the inclusion of some older technology in Spider V. Your time will come but this isn't it.

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Just a glimmer of acoustic hope and gentle prod to Line 6 :)

 

http://line6.com/spider-v/

 

Spider V doesn’t just sound great with electric guitars—it absolutely shines with acoustics. Enhanced acoustic presets are designed with Variax® acoustic technology to bring out the best tonal qualities of your acoustic guitar. Dialed-in effects like delay and reverb will help you take an average acoustic sound to a higher level. Spider V delivers acoustic tone with depth and clarity that regular electric amps just can’t match.

You can get amazing results from Helix with an acoustic instrument or Variax as is.  You don't need a firmware update to do it.  

 

The reason they are touting the acoustic possibilities of the Spider V is because it uses a FRFR speaker setup.  That's why it says "regular electric amps just can't match".  Because regular electric amps are fitted with guitar speakers, not FRFR.  

 

I think the phrase "Variax Acoustic Technology" may be a little misleading here, but someone in the know correct me if I'm wrong.  I'm hearing about this amp today just like everyone else.  I don't believe this amp has any type of built in acoustic modelling.  I THINK what they are implying is because of the speaker setup and built in effects it works great with acoustic (Variax) and electric.  Again, I'm not in the know per se, just going by what I see on their site.  

 

In this Anderton's video Paul Hindmarsh chooses to use an acoustic guitar for the acoustic loop at the end.  Even though he has a Variax on hand.  This tells me that there isn't any acoustic guitar modeling going on inside of the amp itself.  

 

https://youtu.be/I6GzGvjQDPg

 

I did a video with a patch that I have on custom tone with an acoustic patch using Helix and a Variax.  I think you can get great results:

 

https://youtu.be/NjiPjWgV7YI

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Don't worry - you'll have plenty of opportunity to lament the fact that Line 6 continues to develop and release new products, meaning that scarce resources are being redirected from the next-to-latest product updates and enhancements. In my many years around these forums I have never failed to see it happen. A new product is released and the owners of the previously newest product are aghast and feeling that they have been abandoned. You can still see it occasionally in the Firehawk and POD HD forums although it was louder when Helix was first released. And it will appear in the Helix forums when Line 6 next releases new technology, as opposed to the inclusion of some older technology in Spider V. Your time will come but this isn't it.

 

Thanks for the reassurance. I hear you and I in no way feel like it is time to begin working on the Helix's eulogy, I know the pattern of lessening support and focus and eventual end-of-life is inevitable with any product but without getting into the tired old debate of "entitlement" regarding "..but I paid $1500 for this thing" I do think it is the smart choice for the most expensive items at the top end of any company's cost structure to get top-notch support and attention for as long as possible. It definitely instills me with the confidence in that company to buy an expensive item from them again. They should get at least as much attention and probably more than the low-price devices that probably sell more units. Ideally there are enough development resources to go around. I would hate for precious resources to be squandered on perfecting, let's call it a ruby, like the Spider V, when you can focus them on a diamond like the Helix (man I hate that metaphor, insert Kia and Rolls Royce, feh, don't like that metaphor much better but I think you know what I am getting at).

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Two entirely different products, at different price points, aimed at completely different markets.  Kinda like comparing a pair of sweats to a tuxedo, and complaining because the tuxedo doesn't have an elastic waistband with a drawstring...

 

Granted but there is some overlap and some common features that are great to have on either one. As long as they're shinier on the Helix!  ;)

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Two entirely different products, at different price points, aimed at completely different markets. Kinda like comparing a pair of sweats to a tuxedo, and complaining because the tuxedo doesn't have an elastic waistband with a drawstring...

Indeed...

 

But when you really think about it, the only time most guys ever wear a tux, they're signing their life away...why shouldn't they be comfy? ;)

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