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harleymon

Setting the Action on Variax

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Hello All

​ I have a Variax Standard, a HD500X as Fender Deluxe Reverb as well as a Amplifi 150. Thinking of getting the DT50 or the Lt2 (any comments on either or?)

​ I find the action a bit too high for my liking on the Variax, and am curious if changing it so it is lower ( I have a very competent Luthier friend) would diminish or change the tonal qualities when using the modelling guitars, or affect the Piezo pickup?

Thanks

Harleymon

 

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No. Tone quality shouldn't change.

 

But if you change a set-up parameter like that, you will need to have the set-up

checked by a luthier/tech, to be certain that the other parameters are not affected.

And adjust any that need to be compensated for.

 

Changing string gauges changes the tension, and so changes the set-up. And so

would also rquire a set-up check, and if needed, an adjustment.

 

This should be done by a Line 6 authorized service center, as they will have access

to service information.

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Hello All

​ I have a Variax Standard, a HD500X as Fender Deluxe Reverb as well as a Amplifi 150. Thinking of getting the DT50 or the Lt2 (any comments on either or?)

​ I find the action a bit too high for my liking on the Variax, and am curious if changing it so it is lower ( I have a very competent Luthier friend) would diminish or change the tonal qualities when using the modelling guitars, or affect the Piezo pickup?

Thanks

Harleymon

 

What psarkissian says.... but then,merely changing string height isn't exactly rocket science

If you've got a bit of experience, and the tools (surely Line 6 send tools to make adjustments on the instruments they sell), here's some tips...

All talk is that the magnetic pick up distance from the strings is important to get right. So, once you lower the string height at the bridge saddles, lower the bridge pickup by the same distance you lower the bridge, and the middle and neck pickups by slighty less respectively (as they're further away from the lowered bridge saddles, and the relative height adjustment is less per pickup. It'd be a good idea to measure before you start....

Tune the strings right down as you lower the bridge saddles, so there's no tension on them, and you won't damage the thread, or slot for the allen key. Lower the bridge a full turn or so with the allen key, and adjust slightly from there to fine tune. Start with the low E string, and do the others the same number of turns as you settled on for that string.

You'll need to check for string buzz, once adjusted, on all strings (particularly when bending, if you normally do bends in solos), and if there's unacceptable buzz, take it back up a touch. Little by little, you'll get it to where you want it, otherwise it's going to be taken to a tech if other adjustments are needed, like neck relief, or fret-dress, etc.

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Actually string height could effect tone independently of the magnet pick to string gap. There are two reasons. One is the angle the string makes with the piezo pickup. Raising or lowing the string will change the string angle a little bit and that can effect tone since it may change how the piezo pickup sees the string pressure.

 

The second is string fret buzz. Lowering the action to a point were you have acceptable levels of string buzz for the magnet pickups mignt not have the same impact on the piezo pickups. This is because the piezos are pretty sensitive to fret buzz and tend to make it stand out more.

 

I don't think a Variax should be setup the same way as other electric guitars. Rather I think they generally benefit from a bit more relief and a bit higher action.

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I don't think a Variax should be setup the same way as other electric guitars. Rather I think they generally benefit from a bit more relief and a bit higher action.

Which is all well and good if such a set-up happens to be comfortable for you...otherwise it's nothing but a handicap.

 

And please forgive the pun, but all this fretting over millimeters (or fraction thereof) in action and it's perceived affect on tone is ridiculous. I keep mine set up the way I like it...the same as the rest of my guitars. Forcing yourself to contend with a set-up that doesn't suit you in pursuit of "better tone", is horribly misguided,imho. If you're not comfortable with an instrument, you tend not to play very well...and all the magnificent tone in the world will not rescue your performance.

 

Faults and idiosyncrasies aside, if these things were really that sensitive, they'd be almost unusable out in the world. It's still a guitar...

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Set-up doesn't affect tone, but string gauge change often does.

String gauge change, changes the tension,... and that affects the set-up.

When set-up is affected, it may need to be dialed in.

 

No correlation I'm aware of between tone and set-up.

Tone and string gauge,... yes.

String gauge, tension and set-up,... yes.

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I just received my new JTV69S yesterday. Previously, I had purchased a Yamaha Pacifica for my grandson (at Christmas). I suspect they were built at the same factory around the same time (middle of 2016). Both of these guitars were a mess when I received them relative to set up. I spent about three hours on my grandson's pacifica to get it to play acceptably and I'm still working on the JTV. So far, I've had to loosen the neck and raise the saddle on the E and string to stop the buzzing. I'm not convinced I have all the strings setup just right even still. I'm a little concerned that the neck is pretty much relieved as much as it's going to get so I can't do any more neck adjustment without shimming etc.

 

If you buy one of these guitars, know that it's well made but it might come to you poorly set up which might surprise you for your 1000 bucks.

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Yes, 2016.

Set-up is done at various points of location, including the main distribution hub.

Without knowing the end user's destination ahead of time, a set-up across country

would be difficult without knowing the climate of the location of the end user. The

retailer would know the climate and be able to set-up for that. Some retailers have that.

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The retailer would know the climate and be able to set-up for that. Some retailers have that.

These are all what-ifs and assumptions. Regardless of claims made by retailers, the "set-up" allegedly provided prior to shipping is mostly a fantasy. Most simply do nothing, and those that do seem to have a very loose definition of "set-up". Half the time I suspect it means that a high school kid making minimum wage plugs it in, and if sound comes out, it's designated "all good".

 

Now let's assume that isn't the case, and that someone who actually gives a damn, AND just happens to know what they're doing, attempts a set-up based on some theoretical destination...what difference does it make if it's going to Death Valley or a Louisiana swamp? Breathtaking morons aside, no one is storing their guitars outside...they're indoors with some degree of climate control. We can guess all day long where Earl from Des Moines keeps his thermostat set, but most of the time we'd be wrong.

 

Bottom line is, when you take it out of the box, it'll take a couple of days to adjust to the environment...if you leave it on a stand and don't play a note, 3 days later something will have changed. There's no point in setting anything up until it gets where it's going.

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No assumptions, climate does have an affect.

That's why some touring bands take gear with them for doing set-ups.

There's even a company that makes portable set-up jigs just for this reason.

 

It can be taken to a Line 6 authorized service center under warranty and dial it in.

 

 

"... no one is storing their guitars outside"--- actually, there's a guy on the Florida Gulf

Coast, on the beach, near Pensacola that did. It was a mess, and after I worked on it

he took my advice and stowed it in a gig bag inside the house, instead of the front porch.

 

"... when you take it out of the box, it'll take a couple of days to adjust to the environment...

if you leave it on a stand and don't play a note, 3 days later something will have changed.

There's no point in setting anything up until it gets where it's going"--- crusinon2, yes,

less with some, more with others.

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No assumptions, climate does have an affect.

That's why some touring bands take gear with them for doing set-ups.

There's even a company that makes portable set-up jigs just for this reason.

 

It can be taken to a Line 6 authorized service center under warranty and dial it in.

 

 

"... no one is storing their guitars outside"--- actually, there's a guy on the Florida Gulf

Coast, on the beach, near Pensacola that did. It was a mess, and after I worked on it

he took my advice and stowed it in a gig bag inside the house, instead of the front porch.

 

"... when you take it out of the box, it'll take a couple of days to adjust to the environment...

if you leave it on a stand and don't play a note, 3 days later something will have changed.

There's no point in setting anything up until it gets where it's going"--- crusinon2, yes,

less with some, more with others.

For the love of all that is decent and holy...of course the environment makes a difference. I never said otherwise. But to think that you can guess what that environment is from 1000 miles away, merely because you have access to the Weather Channel, is the very essence of an assumption.

 

As for the half-wit in Florida...that falls squarely into the "breathtaking moron" category that I included as a qualifier in my original statement. That being the case, just how much help would it have been to set-up that guitar beforehand? Answer: None whatsoever. It could have been touched by the hand of The Almighty, and the guy would have destroyed it anyway. He may as well have stored it at the bottom of a lake...in fact, if it's deep enough and cold enough down there, it would likely have fared better than on the seaside cottage front porch. The Great Lakes preserve old sunken timber quite nicely...

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Yeah crusinon2, just confirming and backing you on that one. Very good.

 

There are still those out there that think climate affects on instruments only occurs

with acoustic guitar and violins, and that electric solid body guitars are immune.

Nice to know you and I know better. Thanks.

 

Yeah, glad to set the guy in Florida straight on that one. Haven't had it back since.

I think he gets it now.

 

Great Lakes region, Florida Gulf Coast and Eastern Seaboard from the Potomac on 

north are the one that require more attention when doing a set-up from California.

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