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Convince Me To Buy A Jtv Model Over An Original Variax

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since i'm not big into alternate tunings and don't really need a guitar with pickups (have some good ones already) - is the advancement in processing in the JTVs a huge jump over the older Variax models?

 

I liked the idea of being able to overwrite ALL of the banks on the old Variax models, while still being able to re-access the original untouched model banks.

 

so someone please convince me, i am taking the plunge on a variax very soon (my HD500 needs one!)

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Which old model are you comparing to.  There is a big difference in the guitar quality between the 300, 500, 600, 700.  I have a 500 and now a JTV69S and I would say that it is a nicer guitar but not by a lot.

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Which old model are you comparing to.  There is a big difference in the guitar quality between the 300, 500, 600, 700.  I have a 500 and now a JTV69S and I would say that it is a nicer guitar but not by a lot.

I'm considering any of them except for the 300. I had a 500 a few years ago matched with an x3 live and was very happy with it. I thought the actual modeling was identical across those models and the main difference was the guitar build quality itself. Is this not correct?

 

I'm mostly curious about the modeling improvements in the JTVs.

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You are correct. All pre-JTV Variax models use the same modeling; the differences are in the build quality.

 

I think the JTV modeling is much improved over all pre-JTV versions (especially with v2.0 firmware), and so is the build quality - but I know others will differ on both of these points.

 

I think you already are convinced that you want a JTV; you just want some support so that you can rationalize your desire. So go ahead - get it.

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I do like my JTV69 more than my 500.  I like having the mag pickups.  I like the alternate tuning options at my fingertips.  The models are better - but I am not sure I would say "much better".  The guitar build quality is maybe a tad better but there is nothing wrong with the build quality on my 500 either.  The necks are very similar.

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Easy. 

 

1) Better piezos = better sound in the modeling. The modeling was the same originally, but even the piezos made it sound better

2) HD update. Now, this is where they actually do change the modeling. It's completely changed, nothing is the same. With the new technology in modeling hardware and software, it's going to be a no brainer.

3) Features the POD HD can do with the JTV that it can't with the old Variaxes

4) build quality is way better

 

5 and most importantly to me) The alt tuning knob. This is the ice breaker that makes me want to get a JTV like crazy. I fill up the model knob incredibly fast with duplicates of the same guitars but with different tunings. It gets annoying REALLY fast, and I really would love to cut down that wasted space in favor for extra guitar models I'd love to pull up on my variax alone without a POD involved. 

I have many models that I made that are sitting on my hard drive that I'd love to rip apart on a Variax, but a lot of times I leave them off for tuning versatility over tone versatility, because a lot of stuff I play is in different tunings.

 

2 and 5 are the most important ones in my opinion.

 

I have a 600 because I can't afford a JTV. If I did get a JTV, it would be all or nothing, and that would be a 69s black with a maple fretboard, and that's at least 1.4k, and I don't even have close to 1k.

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Easy. 

 

4) build quality is way better

 

I may be in the minority here, but I would disagree on this point. My Variax 700s, which are Japanese built, and PRS style, are MUCH better build quality than my Korean JTV 59.

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I totally agree. My 700s is better quality than my JTV 89.

The HD 2.0 strat modells are crap.

JTV:  faster processor (less input lags), additional magnetic pickups (better palm muting). 

700: higher Quality. I prefer the acustic models.

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I totally agree. My 700s is better quality than my JTV 89.

The HD 2.0 strat modells are crap.

JTV:  faster processor (less input lags), additional magnetic pickups (better palm muting). 

700: higher Quality. I prefer the acustic models.

Agree! And on my 700 there was no lag when I change pickups.

 

IMO, put some graphtech on your Variax, this will improve your sound and make the piezos last longer, and wait for the 3rd gen Variax

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Well, I used to have an original Variax 300, which I know was the low end of the line, so it's not entirely apples to oranges, but the modeling was the same across the line. Even before the HD update, I thought the modeling and responsiveness on the JTV was much better than the original. With the HD update, I feel that the guitar feels much more like a real guitar than the original Variax and even the earlier firmware. Mine is my main guitar now, and that's out of about a dozen guitars I own. So I'd say it does its job very well.

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"since i'm not big into alternate tunings and don't really need a guitar with pickups (have some good ones already) - is the advancement in processing in the JTVs a huge jump over the older Variax models?

 

I liked the idea of being able to overwrite ALL of the banks on the old Variax models, while still being able to re-access the original untouched model banks.

 

so someone please convince me, i am taking the plunge on a variax very soon (my HD500 needs one!)"

 

OK this is MY barrow to push...

If you want opinion that is, but if you are simply looking for affirmation to do it, then look away - avert your gaze now!!!

 

Just don't do it - not yet anyway. People have varying opinion about whether the new firmware for JTV is actually "better" - it's different, and maybe not all for the good.

 

What is your favourite guitar to play? A Gibson/Fender/Whatever?

 

There is going to be compromise either way you go (original vax or JTV). I didn't know you couldn't overwrite models on the JTV, so if that's true, then I'll add that to the list of reasons to NOT buy one.

 

I had a 600 as my main stage guitar, but it always lacked the feel of my previous "player",(my 1970 Strat), which I have now put out to pasture so to speak. The 600 was ok, but definitely "not a Strat".

 

My solution was to buy me a couple of Strat copies at a hundred bucks each, transfer the guts from the 600 (and also another 300 I bought for the same reason), and hey presto! Two guitars which have all the playability (upgraded to Graphtech nut and piezos), and also all the flexibility when connected to my HD500 I could hope for. It was a bit of a learning experience, but I had dismantled/rebuilt and worked on the playability of guitars before, so I relished the challenge.

So for quite a bit less money than the price of a JTV, I have TWO great players!

 

Rant over.

 

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"since i'm not big into alternate tunings and don't really need a guitar with pickups (have some good ones already) - is the advancement in processing in the JTVs a huge jump over the older Variax models?

 

I liked the idea of being able to overwrite ALL of the banks on the old Variax models, while still being able to re-access the original untouched model banks.

 

so someone please convince me, i am taking the plunge on a variax very soon (my HD500 needs one!)"

 

.... I didn't know you couldn't overwrite models on the JTV, so if that's true, then I'll add that to the list of reasons to NOT buy one.

 

....

Just to clarify - that's not true. You can overwrite JTV models.

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Just to clarify - that's not true. You can overwrite JTV models.

Thanks for the clarity! I'll scrub that one off the list ;)

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I was not sure what the poster was asking here.  Does he already own a Variax and want to know if he should upgrade?  If he does not own a Variax I would recommend going with a JTV for sure.

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I was not sure what the poster was asking here. Does he already own a Variax and want to know if he should upgrade? If he does not own a Variax I would recommend going with a JTV for sure.

I do not currently own a variax. I owned a variax 500 (sunburst with the dark pick guard) that I was very happy with but sold when I found myself not playing much and chose to sell.

 

I very much appreciate the responses in this thread - I'm intrigued by the old 700's, love the look and build of those , but buying a jtv isn't much more expensive at the price point especially considering 700's are all used.

 

I guess I should narrow my question to - what exactly is different about the modeling in the jtv's? I am less concerned with strat modeling as I have a strat - I liked the rickenbacker modeling in the 500 I owned, the Gibson modeling seemed muddy so I'm curious about those two in particular. I'm definitely getting one I'm just weighing between a lightly used 700 and a new jtv at this point.

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Stil the Strat models in HD 2.0 are crap. Thin and .....Luckily you don´t Need them. The LesPauls are good in 2.0

Maybe L6 brings out an update

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I don't think the 2.0 strat models are crap.  Maybe they were better before but they are very usable and you can tweak them with workbench if you don't like the tone.

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The 2.0 Strat models definitely aren't crap at least as I'm concerned. I currently have 5 Strats in my possession, and I'd put the JTV up against any of them. I don't know what people think the JTV model should sound like to be honest with you. Sounds like a real Strat to me.

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if its a choice between a 700 an JTV, and you have an HD500, get the JTV.  You might as well take advantage of the functionality you have in the hd500.

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if its a choice between a 700 an JTV, and you have an HD500, get the JTV. You might as well take advantage of the functionality you have in the hd500.

I am getting a jtv , thanks to all who helped nudge me :-)

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I also forgot to say that it is also the more supported guitar, obviously. It'll be easier to fix problems with a JTV than a Gen 1 Variax because the old ones are no longer in production and blah blah blah.

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As an owner of a vax700, vac700, jtv59 and jtv89f I can say that I absolutely loved my vax700 but the jtv59 is much nicer looking guitar and plays better. The jtv89 as far as looks is very compara le but the floyd rose is a much better whammy system. For acoustic sounds the vac700 is still king but I do preferthe acoustic modeling in the jtv series (though I have held my 59 at 1.9 and updated the 89f to 2.0) I also have had flawless working units on each guitar. Obviously the 700 lovers have their reasons, and it is still a great instrument, but the communication and flexibility between the hd500 and jtv series is superior to that of the vax700.

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As an owner of a vax700, vac700, jtv59 and jtv89f I can say that I absolutely loved my vax700 but the jtv59 is much nicer looking guitar and plays better. The jtv89 as far as looks is very compara le but the floyd rose is a much better whammy system. For acoustic sounds the vac700 is still king but I do preferthe acoustic modeling in the jtv series (though I have held my 59 at 1.9 and updated the 89f to 2.0) I also have had flawless working units on each guitar. Obviously the 700 lovers have their reasons, and it is still a great instrument, but the communication and flexibility between the hd500 and jtv series is superior to that of the vax700.

 

since i'm probably getting a JTV59, can i ask why you held the FW at 1.9?  

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since i'm probably getting a JTV59, can i ask why you held the FW at 1.9?  

 

There is a debate about the Strat models on the 2.0 HD firmware compared to the 1.9. Some people say they don't like it.

 

Some also think 2.0 might be a bit buggy.

 

It's all debatable and you should decide for yourself which one you prefer.

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since i'm not big into alternate tunings and don't really need a guitar with pickups (have some good ones already) - is the advancement in processing in the JTVs a huge jump over the older Variax models?

 

I liked the idea of being able to overwrite ALL of the banks on the old Variax models, while still being able to re-access the original untouched model banks.

 

so someone please convince me, i am taking the plunge on a variax very soon (my HD500 needs one!)

 

In the past I owned a Variax 700 and I currently have two Variax transplants, one made from a V500 and one from a V300. I also own a JTV89 Korean.

 

My opinion:

 

1. The necks on the Variax 700 and the Variax 500 were both better than the one on my JTV89 - better fretwork, better woodwork. I prefer the shape of the 89 neck to the others but it is poorly finished, I am planning to replace it with a nice Ibanez Wizard neck.

 

Korean Tyler neck = MAJOR FAIL

 

2. The bridges on my older Variaxes were much better than the one on my JTV. The biggest problem with my JTV89 is the crummy bridge. I have had the guitar since June but have hardly touched it due to the bridge making weird clacking noises when I play, I will not be able to use the guitar until the bridge is replaced.

 

Tyler bridge = MAJOR FAIL

 

3. According to Line 6 the JTV has to be tuned to A440 for the modeling to work properly. This was not true of the earlier Variaxes, I have used my transplants tuned down to D standard for years with no problem but the JTV makes all kinds of weird noises when tuned to D.

 

If you are okay with the look of the old Variaxes I think a V700 is your best option, with the 500 a good second choice. Honestly, even my bottom of the line Variax 300 was a better/more useable guitar than my shiny new JTV. Sad but true.

 

I had high hopes for my JTV but it was a HUGE letdown. With a bunch of expensive parts and some hard work it will be useable and possibly great some day but at this point IMO the JTV is still not fit for human consumption.

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Oleus, the only reasons I held the 59 at 1.9 was a) I could b) the 4th position strat emulation of 1.9 fits better with my 80s band c) the 2.0 emulation with my prog band is a better fit with 89f.

Again these are all opinions that just happen to be mine.

 

I would say the greatest asset or curse of line6 equipment (this includes the POD series) is the amount of flexibility and choices the player is given. Obviously in this thread alone just with vax700 and jtvs there are players that prefer the 700 for various reasons that are well documented and others that prefer the jtv.

 

I think you will find that whatever your choice its a very large menu to choose from

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Neck and Bridge on my JTV69S are perfect as good as my American Strat.  It plays great and I would hardly call it a "Major Fail".  That is BS.

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Neck and Bridge on my JTV69S are perfect as good as my American Strat.  It plays great and I would hardly call it a "Major Fail".  That is BS.

 

Looks like you were lucky enough to find one of the good ones. Good for you Charlie, you've got a golden ticket! Run for it Charlie! Run straight home and don't stop til you get there! :D

 

Now take a look around the forum at all the people with complaints about the neck on their JTV and the many who have deemed it necessary to replace their necks and you may begin to notice you are in the minority on this. Do you remember reading about strings falling off the fretboard? If your guitar does not suffer from this problem, well, I envy you. Nah, not really, I already have a really nice Ibanez replacement neck for my JTV, when I get around to installing it I am sure I will be able to begin to enjoy my JTV.

 

Then again I might just end up putting the JTV on ebay, I have lived this long without it and so far all it has been good for is collecting dust and disappointing me...

 

For those of us with the guitars with shoddy workmanship it is a MAJOR FAIL. Not made up, not "BS".

 

Hmmm, I have played a few JTV69s and have owned a few US Strats, I would think anyone who has experience with both JTVs and US Strats would be more inclined to think of your statement as "BS"... wait, maybe you have the US JTV...? I should hope those guitars are of a higher quality considering the price.

 

Or maybe you have a defective/low quality US Strat...? I have had some Strats that were better than others, it kind of depends where and what year they were made, and even then you know what they say - "No two are the same".

 

Maybe the Yamaha deal will help improve the QC on the Korean JTVs, til then I advise waiting.

 

No BS. :)

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Now take a look arouind the forum at all the people with complaints about the neck on their JTV and you may begin to notice you are in the minority on this. Do you remember reading about strings falling off the fretboard? If your guitar does not suffer from this problem, well, I envy you. Nah, not really, I already have a replacement Ibanez neck for my JTV, when I get around to installing it I am sure I will be able to begin to enjoy my JTV. Then again I might just end up putting the JTV on ebay, I have lived this long without it and so far all it has been good for so far is collecting dust and disappointing me...

 

 

Don't want to be off subject but it looks like it already is...

 

johnnyayyy,  I am a sort of new JTV-89 user and I have had this happen more than a few times on the bass E string.  No other string has this issue?  I have been playing for about 30 years now and I have owned many guitars over the years and none of them had this issue.  For the life of me I can't figure out how or why this is happening?  Is this is not a show stopper but very annoying when it happens.  I just put on bigger strings last weekend to see if this will help.  Elixir 11 -49's.  52's don't fit correctly on either the bridge or nut.  Is this just an 89 thing or is it with the JTV line?

 

As for the OP,  I really like playing my JTV and it's a Korean made guitar.   I have a few Korean made guitars and I like all of them. They are all PRS's.  Not too sure about my Jackson and Gibson. 

 

I hope that Yamaha will step in and improve L6's QC.

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I have been playing for about 30 years now and I have owned many guitars over the years and none of them had this issue.  For the life of me I can't figure out how or why this is happening? 

 

Poor design/poor craftsmanship, that is why this is happening.

 

FYI, a standard 24 fret Jackson neck and certain 24 fret Ibanez necks will fit the JTV89 body with only slight modification to the neck.

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Depending on how much it annoys me, I might just try that after my warranty runs out.  All my guitars have Dimarzio's and have been biting at the bit to swap them out so maybe when I decide to replce the pickups I will try replacing the neck.  I don't play the jackson all too much anymore and have always liked the Jackson neck.  The JTV neck kind of reminds me of my Jackson's neck in a way and thats one of the reasons I bought the JTV.

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guess i am from the few guys that don't have the neck problem, but have the knobs problems... everybody hope for a better QC with yamaha...hope it will be true... :'(

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ok, now i'm as undecided as when i made this thread!??  How long until the Yamaha JTV's hit the market?

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guess i am from the few guys that don't have the neck problem, but have the knobs problems... everybody hope for a better QC with yamaha...hope it will be true... :'(

 

what kind of knobs problems?

 

at least with the help of this thread, if i do pull the trigger on a JTV, i  know to immediately check the neck out for its ability to hold the strings!

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I bought a Korean JTV89. Sound (1.9) ok. Playability not good. I took the guitar to a guitar technician. He look at the frets and the were not well adjusted. But he said this is normal because the quality checks are bad in series production. Invested 100€. now playability is perfect.

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I don't think the 2.0 strat models are crap.  Maybe they were better before but they are very usable and you can tweak them with workbench if you don't like the tone.

Doing a A to B comparision with my band colleagues they gave me this feedback.

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what kind of knobs problems?

 

at least with the help of this thread, if i do pull the trigger on a JTV, i  know to immediately check the neck out for its ability to hold the strings!

you know, the volume knob is very loose, you put to maximum and underneath the pot is moving, and the model knob can't reach easily the analog/digital button... on my variax after 5 years only the piezo died, replaced by graphtech and became better than new...

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Stil the Strat models in HD 2.0 are crap. Thin and .....Luckily you don´t Need them. The LesPauls are good in 2.0

Maybe L6 brings out an update

 

The alleged inferiority of the 2.0 Strats is not really a good reason to choose an original Variax over a JTV as you can always run the JTV with pre 2.0 firmware if you like.

 

Same with lack of HD interface for Workbench issue - roll back the firmware and JTV becomes the functional equivalent of the older Variax.

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in principle you are right with your arguments. you don´t have to use 2.0. But .... it is not an alleged inferiority but a proven inferiority, test it or ask neutral users.

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