Jump to content

Recommended Posts

I know this is a legacy product, but any insight would be super appreciated.

 

I have a Variax 500 that used to work just fine, but recently stopped producing any sound.

 

For the record, I'm strictly running off batteries at this point but this Variax did use to also work fine with a Pod XT using the variax cable.

 

When I noticed initially the 500 wasn't working, all I got was occasional weird wooshing, spacey sounds, but absolutely no guitar sounds. I checked all the connections, made sure the batteries are fresh, and now I get no sound whatsoever. It doesn't matter where the knobs and switches are, there's just no sound coming out of this guitar.

 

The online research I've done points to "maybe" the bridge cable being bad (it looked fine when I looked at it), but is there anything else I can try and fix to get my 500 working again?

 

thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pop the back cover off and while everything is connected and plugged in wiggle the mainboard ribbon cable gently and see if any sound comes back. Perhaps some of the connections oxidized. That was the problem my 500 had.

 

A service center may be in your future though. The 500s are still really nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks BillBee, I'll check the connector tonight! (it's the one with the rainbow colored wires coming out of it correct?)

 

If that's the cable, I did remove it and re-insert it last night just to make sure it was connected properly... but I didn't check the contacts for oxidation. (fingers crossed as I really do like my 500)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ehh, no luck with the connector. I took a look at all the connections to the PCB and they all look good. Bummer...

 

Any other ideas or suggestions? I'm open to try just about anything before I sell the 500 for it's body and neck (which are stunners on this tobacco burst)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ok, for the benefit of those either in the same boat, or if you're contemplating what kind of company Line 6 is, I gotta post the resolution to this.

 

soo, on the advice Charlie_Watt, I did contact Line 6. I figured it was a huge reach in the dark, knowing full well they hadn't even made this model in years, and my guitar was about 10 years old. But figured (shrug), why not, right? It's worth an email.

 

So I reached out to Line 6 support and explained that my Variax 500 had suddenly died on me, and was there anything they could even do (knowing how old the guitar was)?

 

They gave me an RMA and told me to send the guitar to them. Kinda odd, as I figured they'd either tell me it's the guitar is too old to fix, or they'd tell me to go find some authorized repair shop. But no, they said send it directly back to them.

 

I did, and expected their response once they received it to be either "it's too old, we can't fix it as there's no parts for it" or "we can fix it but it'll cost more than the guitar is worth".

 

Imagine my absolute SURPRISE when about 2 weeks later, a large box appears on my doorstep!! (yes, I did receive an advance UPS notification)

 

I thought maybe Line 6 had simply returned my Variax with some sort of note saying "sorry, couldn't fix it".

 

But no... I plugged it in -  and it works perfectly!!!

 

Are you kidding me? I was very surprised by their service (in a very, very good way)

 

Short story long (cause that's how I roll on too much coffee) - I have a fully functional Variax 500 back in my hands - repaired by a company that DOES give a damn about their customers.

 

Thank you Line 6. 

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have a guy here who dates back to the original Variaxes.

He's really good. If anyone can fix it he can.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excellent! Thanks for the follow-up. Many times we only hear the lollipop end of a story and not the successful resolution.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ok, for the benefit of those either in the same boat, or if you're contemplating what kind of company Line 6 is, I gotta post the resolution to this.

 

soo, on the advice Charlie_Watt, I did contact Line 6. I figured it was a huge reach in the dark, knowing full well they hadn't even made this model in years, and my guitar was about 10 years old. But figured (shrug), why not, right? It's worth an email.

 

So I reached out to Line 6 support and explained that my Variax 500 had suddenly died on me, and was there anything they could even do (knowing how old the guitar was)?

 

They gave me an RMA and told me to send the guitar to them. Kinda odd, as I figured they'd either tell me it's the guitar is too old to fix, or they'd tell me to go find some authorized repair shop. But no, they said send it directly back to them.

 

I did, and expected their response once they received it to be either "it's too old, we can't fix it as there's no parts for it" or "we can fix it but it'll cost more than the guitar is worth".

 

Imagine my absolute SURPRISE when about 2 weeks later, a large box appears on my doorstep!! (yes, I did receive an advance UPS notification)

 

I thought maybe Line 6 had simply returned my Variax with some sort of note saying "sorry, couldn't fix it".

 

But no... I plugged it in -  and it works perfectly!!!

 

Are you kidding me? I was very surprised by their service (in a very, very good way)

 

Short story long (cause that's how I roll on too much coffee) - I have a fully functional Variax 500 back in my hands - repaired by a company that DOES give a damn about their customers.

 

Thank you Line 6. 

Awesome - there's life in the old 500 yet!!

Any news on what the problem was?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah sorry, should have included this - 

 

"Notes from the tech: "Replaced battery holder,battery cable and main board."

 

Pretty sure I could have handled 2 out of those 3 items, but I'm amazed/glad they still have some of the old boards around!!.  :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×