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Do All Current Variax Guitars Work With Workbench HD?

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Hi chums. I'm looking at buying a Variax but I'm having difficulty choosing which one, they're all so pretty. One thing I can't find an answer on is which guitars work with Workbench HD, something I'd really like to be able to do. The idea of 'building' a guitar pleases me. I like the Variax Standard but do I need a James Tyler model to use the software?

 

Thanks in advance for your help. :-)

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Workbench HD is compatible with all Variax JTV and Standard models. It is not compatible with the earlier Variax models.

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Well, the guitar arrived today. A Variax Standard in tobbacoburst (or whatever). First I discovered there was no USB cable/device in the box. I contacted the retailer but haven't heard back yet though in the meantime I discovered there's no tremelo arm. Then I find a battery charger but no battery (it's not in the guitar either). I suspect it is not a brand new guitar even though I was sold it as such. I'm not complaining here to Line 6 I don't think it's their fault, just wanted a bit of a rant as new guitar day was ruined.

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Where did you buy it? It's certainly their fault. It should come equipped with the tremolo arm, the USB Workbench interface device and cables, as well as a battery. I would contact the seller asap and demand the missing pieces, or take/send it back for full refund and re-order elsewhere.

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Well, the guitar arrived today. A Variax Standard in tobbacoburst (or whatever). First I discovered there was no USB cable/device in the box. I contacted the retailer but haven't heard back yet though in the meantime I discovered there's no tremelo I'm not complaining here to Line 6 I don't think it's their fault, just wanted a bit of a rant as new guitar day was ruined.

Retail is a cesspool. Returned and/or "demo" items get pawned off as "new" all the time. Invariably, stuff is missing. Send it back. Order one from Sweetwater.

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They're sending the missing parts to me, but now I've noticed the tone pot just keeps turning with no obvious stops like the volume has. Man what a terrible experience this has been.

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If they have the missing parts .... why were they missing? And what's your confidence level that they will actually send them now? If I were you I would ask them to keep the missing parts, return the guitar to them for a full refund and take my business elsewhere, never to return there.

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It's all packed up in the box ready to go back, being collected tomorrow. I don't think I'm going to bother buying another one.

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Glad to hear you're returning it. Sorry to hear you won't get another. Have your reasons for getting a Variax changed or are you just turned off by the bad experience? If the latter, buying from a more reputable retailer should get you what you still want.

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I think it's just the experience that's tainted it a bit. I'll probably get another, in fact I was just checking prices at another retailer. :D :D

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I bought mine at Guitar Center. They couldn't find the original box and after some searching, did find a plastic bag containing the missing parts. The guitar was a floor model and who knows what abuse it got. Unfortunately it would not work with the 1/4" output connected, it would only work through the VDI cable. The setup was terrible, but I assumed I could fix that myself.

 

I sent it back, and Line6 repaired the 1/4" output, but didn't do anything about the setup. It had fret problems and I ended up spending an additional $300 to get the frets leveled and dressed properly, do the setup, and change to a wider nut. I wasn't happy about that additional cost, but it plays pretty well now.

 

Would I do this again, given the HD models and their somewhat banjo/resonance tone? Not sure. I do gig with it regularly, and do appreciate how easy it is to get different guitar tones and open tunings. Not sure I would use it for recording or in a professional context, but for the club gigs I do its certainly adequate and convenient. I have a nice Strat Deluxe and a 50 year old (single owner) Les Paul that I could use. But the Strat doesn't have the flexibility of the Variax Standard, and I'm reluctant to take that Les Paul to club gigs. 

 

The money wasn't a huge issue for me. I can deal with the inconvenience of having to have a couple of repairs - Line6 and http://thefretking.gettimely.com. And I'm not looking for professional, vintage tone and playability from this instrument. But that was quite a cost for a mediocre instrument. Water under the bridge, I'm glad I have it. But...

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Workbench HD,... is for JTV's with Firmware v2.00 or higher, and the new Variax Standards

which already come with the current v2.21 Firmware.

 

Any JTV's with Firmware before v2.00, uses the older Workbench.

 

 

amsdenj,... btw, a set-up was done to the Variax Standard, done to spec then adjusted for your

geographical location. Sorry it wasn't to your liking. If someone sends a guitar back and  they let me

know about some thing special like that beyond the normal set-up, I make a point to accommodate

where I can. 

 

Thanks for feedback, it's helpful, thanks.

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amsdenj,... btw, a set-up was done to the Variax Standard, done to spec then adjusted for your

geographical location. Sorry it wasn't to your liking. If someone sends a guitar back and  they let me

know about some thing special like that beyond the normal set-up, I make a point to accommodate

where I can. 

 

Appreciate the response thanks. Not sure if you meant my specific Variax Standard was setup when it went back for repair, or that in general all the guitars are setup from the factory and adjusted for location. I suspect the latter. When I sent mine back, I didn't mention the setup issue, and that could have been my mistake. Changing the nut width was certainly a personal preference and not something I would have expected in any case.

 

Note that after that expensive setup, I played a bunch of outdoor gigs in North Carolina, pretty hot an humid this summer. The Variax Standard exhibited some instability under these conditions and I had to change the setup a few times to address significant fret buzz. I suspect any instrument would have similar problems. It seems that the Variax models are particularly sensitive to fret buzz through the piezo pickups. It might be best to error on the side of higher action and more neck relief for this particular guitar.

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Fortunately, whether from the distribution hub or my repair bench,

going over the set-up and making adjustments where needed, is routine

and part of the check-up before leaving our hands.

 

We start from spec, then adjust for the location. It's a skill and we get it right

most of the time. There's a trick and skill to it, doing a  set-up for a geographical

location across the other side of the country. Climate of the location plays

a big part in it.

 

Yes, piezos are a sensitive thing and pick up a host of thing in the signal.

Erring on the side of high, on the action is okay under your conditions, just 

don't go too high or pitch shift can result if you fret a note hard at too high

an action level. All about finding that sweet spot.

 

Rock-n-roll.

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Well I've taken delivery of a new JTV-59 in tobacco sunburst and all the bits and bobs are in the box. It is definitely a brand new guitar but I haven't had a chance to plug it in yet. The guys at Andertons have set it up before shipping and I am a happy chappy. I suppose I have to leave this forum now and use the JTV one, it was an honour knowing you.

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Andertons, I hear good things about them,... say hello to

Denmark St, Sloane Sqr and Theatreland for me, next time you're that way.

 

Rock-n-roll.

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We start from spec, then adjust for the location. It's a skill and we get it right

most of the time. There's a trick and skill to it, doing a  set-up for a geographical

location across the other side of the country. Climate of the location plays

a big part in it.

Re: climate and impact... After that somewhat expensive setup, my Variax Standard played really well. Having a wider nut made it feel more like a Strat, and the action was nearly perfect. No fret buzz, it was great. Then we played about 6 gigs in a row outside in North Carolina this summer. On one of the later ones, there was so much fret buzz that the Variax wasn't playable. I adjusted it the next day and got it playing pretty well again.

 

My question is could heat and humidity play that big a role in changing the guitar setup over a couple of months? My Strat and Les Paul are in those same environments, and they didn't change. But they're old instruments and may have seasoned/settled. Anyone else noticed big changes in action caused by heat and humidity?

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My question is could heat and humidity play that big a role in changing the guitar setup over a couple of months? My Strat and Les Paul are in those same environments, and they didn't change. But they're old instruments and may have seasoned/settled. Anyone else noticed big changes in action caused by heat and humidity?

You don't need months. With enough heat and humidity, a few days is more than sufficient to throw off your set-up. Put a guitar in the trunk of a car on a hot enough day, and you can utterly destroy a neck in a matter of hours.

 

And yes, older necks that have "settled" tend to respond less (or at the very least, slower) to environmental changes...but none of them are immune. The kind of wood and the construction matter too. I have a one-piece (no separate glued on fretboard) bird's eye maple neck that's like a sponge. Requires more frequent adjusting than any other guitar I own. Won't make that mistake again. Glued on fretboards, even if it's the same kind of wood as the rest of the neck, seem to impart additional stability somehow.

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I just bought a used Variax Standard and I have to say this baby is in mint condition and it is an outstanding feeling and playing instrument.  I have owned several different strats such as Fender American, Fernandes, Squier Classic Vibes, and this feels as good (action wise) as any of them - I love the satin neck - and it sounds just great with the modeling on or off.  I also just picked up a mint condition HD500X but I have just started getting monkey, workbench, and the HD500x edit software going.  I haven't even messed with the 500x yet.  I have many hours of tinkering ahead of me.  I have been playing the Variax through Bias FX desktop software which is very good but pretty limited and I am getting some very usable tones from all of the Variax models.  It just takes some patience and some tweaking.  

 

I am very pleasantly surprised with the Variax Standard look, neck, and tone.  

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Workbench HD,... is for JTV's with Firmware v2.00 or higher, and the new Variax Standards

which already come with the current v2.21 Firmware.

 

Any JTV's with Firmware before v2.00, uses the older Workbench.

 

 

amsdenj,... btw, a set-up was done to the Variax Standard, done to spec then adjusted for your

geographical location. Sorry it wasn't to your liking. If someone sends a guitar back and  they let me

know about some thing special like that beyond the normal set-up, I make a point to accommodate

where I can. 

 

Thanks for feedback, it's helpful, thanks.

 

how do I install my variax 300 models in to a jtv 89F? I really like the strat and 335 in the 300. the one in the 89 are thin

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I have a Variax Standard and am trying to get the workbench to work with it. The software doesn't see my variax. I am using a Mac w/ OS X 10.9.5 and the usb interface. I also have the Helix. What am I doing wrong? I have installed both Workbench & Workbench HD.

 

Thanks for any help.

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I have a Variax Standard and am trying to get the workbench to work with it. The software doesn't see my variax. I am using a Mac w/ OS X 10.9.5 and the usb interface. I also have the Helix. What am I doing wrong? I have installed both Workbench & Workbench HD.

 

Thanks for any help.

 

Well, the Helix doesn't work as a Workbench interface yet (it will when 2.20 is release in February), so you'll have to use the VDI interface. That doesn't provide power to the Variax, so you have to use the battery, and the guitar has to be on - meaning you have to have a 1/4" cable plugged into it, and have the volume knob turned up.

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Thanks for the quick reply. Of course I didn't read the Workbench manual. I was using the VDI but I didn't have a 1/4 cable plugged in. I will give it another go. I have both the manuals for the Variax Standard & the Workbench HD and will read them both.

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Hi chums. I'm looking at buying a Variax but I'm having difficulty choosing which one, they're all so pretty. One thing I can't find an answer on is which guitars work with Workbench HD, something I'd really like to be able to do. The idea of 'building' a guitar pleases me. I like the Variax Standard but do I need a James Tyler model to use the software?

 

Thanks in advance for your help. :-)

 

Ya, It appears they forgot all about us 700 variax owners. I can't use my workbench because it is not compatible with windows 10. Where is the upgraded software? Or do you really have to buy a new guitar?

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Ya, It appears they forgot all about us 700 variax owners. I can't use my workbench because it is not compatible with windows 10. Where is the upgraded software? Or do you really have to buy a new guitar?

 

Have you tried downloading and installing the latest version of Workbench (not Workbench HD)? They released a version that works for Windows 8. I believe that should still work for Windows 10.

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Helix doesn't work as a Workbench interface yet (it will when 2.20 is release in February)

 

February will be done in a few hours. Has there been a change to when 2.2 will be released?

 

EDIT: Nevermind, I just saw that it'll be released in March

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