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cruisinon2

Jtv69 Alternate Tuning Issue

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Hey folks...newJTV69 owner here with a question. I seem to be having a issue with several alternate tunings, specifically drop D, drop Db, DADGAD, and open D ( basically all the tunings where the low E string is a whole step below where it would otherwise be). When palm muting open A or open D (4th) strings , I'm hearing some strange overtones. Almost sounds like more than one string is being played. It's terribly annoying, and almost makes drop D unusable. Disappears completely in standard tuning...1/2 step and whole step down are fine too. Anybody else experience anything similar? I've been dealing with Line 6 support. Did all the usual things...checked and rechecked the intonation, reflashed the firmware, etc etc. Any ideas? Thanks...

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Did you confirm that you are not hearing the actual strings on the guitar, by playing using closed headphones so you can only hear the amplified sound?  Or playing loud enough on your amp to drown out the natural sounds of the strings?  Or recording the sound directly to a PC and playing it back to see if the overtones are still there?

 

If you did that and can still hear overtones, then the next thing to do is ensure that the strings between the nut and the machine heads are not ringing.  Use a hair scrunchie or a small piece of material weaved in around the strings to ensure they are completely muted.

 

If that still does not fix it, then you need to look at possible string ringing from behind the bridge and within the trem block and mute as necessary. 

 

Once you have ensured there is no extraneous harmonic ringing of the strings anywhere on the JTV69, you have basically done all you can physically.

 

The next thing to do is ensure you are playing as cleanly as possible, any string noise at all can introduce strange artefacts when playing in altered tunings.

 

If you have done all of this and are playing cleanly then I am out of ideas, and it is most likely a fault with your JTV69 and would need to go back to Line6 to be assessed and hopefully fixed.

 

Good luck!  Hope this helps.

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Thanks for the ideas...I have already muted the strings behind the nut, but i have not addressed the bridge at all, so ill give that a try. Initially I thought it was pilot error...i figured some technique adjustment might be necessary to get the piezos to behave as close to a mag pup as possible, but it really is only present on certain alternate tunings. If it showed up on all of them, I'd be more willing to accept that it was just a limitation of the technology, but why some alt tunings and not others? It only affects those tunings where the low E string is tuned a whole step (drop D, drop Db, open D, DADGAD). And the biggest problem is the A string, which is not even having its pitch altered in most of those cases?? Who knows...

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I know you have reflashed several times already but crazy as it may seem, another reflash or 2 or 3 or 4 may fix it.    That is based on what I have seen posted many times on the forum where problems have disappeared after another reflash.  I don't understand why that should be, but many people report that it does sometimes work but of course it is very random and hit and miss.

 

Also, it could just be the natural resonance of your particular JTV, that certain frequencies set off other strings and it is manifesting itself when you play those particular tunings.  In which case there is nothing more that you can do once you have addressed all the obvious sympathetic resonance issues.

 

Finally - if nothing works and you are still within guarantee period, then I suggest you send it in to Line6 for them to look at and test.   If they can find a problem then they will fix it for you or they will confirm that its working fine.

 

Good luck - hope you can get it sorted!

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One more suggestion, try a search in this forum for "ghost notes",  there may be some other helpful suggestions in the threads that you will find.   Good luck.

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Well, after much tinkering I sorted out the issue. Pilot error...lol. It seems that the nasty overtones were coming from the low E string, just from my hand resting on it while also palm muting the A string. I guess the piezo was picking up what little vibrations the low E was generating even though it wasnt being played. It takes a little manuevering, but if I stay away from the low E, all is well. So anybody else withh a similar issue, try repositioning your hand to avoid any unwanted funky noises...not something I'd consider a 'defect' in the guitar per se, just a side effect of a piezo's sensitivity I guess. Takes some getting used to, but its managable.

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Well, after much tinkering I sorted out the issue. Pilot error...lol. It seems that the nasty overtones were coming from the low E string, just from my hand resting on it while also palm muting the A string. I guess the piezo was picking up what little vibrations the low E was generating even though it wasnt being played. It takes a little manuevering, but if I stay away from the low E, all is well. So anybody else withh a similar issue, try repositioning your hand to avoid any unwanted funky noises...not something I'd consider a 'defect' in the guitar per se, just a side effect of a piezo's sensitivity I guess. Takes some getting used to, but its managable.

 

Glad you found the answer!   I have also noticed that the piezo's are super sensitive and pick up way more accidental noise than normal magnetic pickups.   Have you tried lowering the global srting volumes on the JTV via Workbench?  That may make them less sensitive to usual playing technique noises and more in line with magnetic pickups.  Might be worth a try.

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Glad you found the answer!   I have also noticed that the piezo's are super sensitive and pick up way more accidental noise than normal magnetic pickups.   Have you tried lowering the global srting volumes on the JTV via Workbench?  That may make them less sensitive to usual playing technique noises and more in line with magnetic pickups.  Might be worth a try.

Thats worth a try...although I suspect it wont matter. Unless I'm mistaken, lowering the string volume will only affect the piezo's output, not the inherent sensitivity of the pickup itself. If there's extraneous noise being picked up, I would think that would still be there regardless of the string's volume setting. I'll just end up turning up the amp...I kinda think those adjustments are there to allow relative volumes of different models to be normalized so that the outputs are similar...but who knows, you might be right. Many nuances to this instrument, and I'm just getting started.

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Thats worth a try...although I suspect it wont matter. Unless I'm mistaken, lowering the string volume will only affect the piezo's output, not the inherent sensitivity of the pickup itself. If there's extraneous noise being picked up, I would think that would still be there regardless of the string's volume setting. I'll just end up turning up the amp...I kinda think those adjustments are there to allow relative volumes of different models to be normalized so that the outputs are similar...but who knows, you might be right. Many nuances to this instrument, and I'm just getting started.

 

True - the noise will probably still be there - but reduced in volume and hopefully not as noticeable in the final sound.   I did reduce my string volumes a couple of months ago and found that the end result was that the models sounded better and more realistic - however - I have since had to reflash due to other problems and have not had time to go back and adjust the string volumes, and I have noticed that I get a lot of extraneous noise particularly when playing higher gain sounds and I know it's due to my technique but also to the sensitivity of the piezo's.  If I switch to mags then things are a lot smoother.  So I must get round to adjusting the string volumes again.    Hope it works out for you and gives you some improvement.

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True - the noise will probably still be there - but reduced in volume and hopefully not as noticeable in the final sound.   I did reduce my string volumes a couple of months ago and found that the end result was that the models sounded better and more realistic - however - I have since had to reflash due to other problems and have not had time to go back and adjust the string volumes, and I have noticed that I get a lot of extraneous noise particularly when playing higher gain sounds and I know it's due to my technique but also to the sensitivity of the piezo's.  If I switch to mags then things are a lot smoother.  So I must get round to adjusting the string volumes again.    Hope it works out for you and gives you some improvement.

How far did you turn the string volume down?

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How far did you turn the string volume down?

 

If I remember correctly - when I was on FW v2.0 - I tried to level the string volumes by ear and ended up turning them down between 1.5 and 4 db with Workbench HD.  When I adjusted them on v1.71 before moving on to v2.0 - I had adjusted the string volumes between 90 and 80 percent, under standard Workbench again trying to level them out by ear.   I recall that some people said they had dropped their string volumes by 6db or so under v2.0.   When I first experimented under v2.0 I noticed that the adjustment had to be 6db or more to easily notice a volume change anything less was really subtle.   It's easier enough to play around with - so maybe go for an obvious difference first and compare the models to real guitar levels through a normal amp - and if they are too quiet, then move them up a bit.   If you decide it makes no difference or not a significant enough difference that you like, then you can always reset them back to max.  I was surprised at the difference it made, I think the factory levels are too hot and it benefits from turning them down a bit, in a similar way to hurghanico's discovery that only using one input on the HD500 produces better and more realistic amp tones, tweaking the string volumes does help bring out the best in the guitar models.

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If I remember correctly - when I was on FW v2.0 - I tried to level the string volumes by ear and ended up turning them down between 1.5 and 4 db with Workbench HD.  When I adjusted them on v1.71 before moving on to v2.0 - I had adjusted the string volumes between 90 and 80 percent, under standard Workbench again trying to level them out by ear.   I recall that some people said they had dropped their string volumes by 6db or so under v2.0.   When I first experimented under v2.0 I noticed that the adjustment had to be 6db or more to easily notice a volume change anything less was really subtle.   It's easier enough to play around with - so maybe go for an obvious difference first and compare the models to real guitar levels through a normal amp - and if they are too quiet, then move them up a bit.   If you decide it makes no difference or not a significant enough difference that you like, then you can always reset them back to max.  I was surprised at the difference it made, I think the factory levels are too hot and it benefits from turning them down a bit, in a similar way to hurghanico's discovery that only using one input on the HD500 produces better and more realistic amp tones, tweaking the string volumes does help bring out the best in the guitar models.

This might be a dumb question, but what do you mean when you say "using only one input" on the HD500?

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This might be a dumb question, but what do you mean when you say "using only one input" on the HD500?

 

Not dumb at all, if you have not been reading hurghanico's threads then you would not know what I was referring to.  If you are interested in the complete background check out this thread: http://line6.com/support/topic/4927-how-has-greatly-improved-my-use-of-the-hd500/

 

But the quick answer to your question is, "using only one input" refers to setting INPUT 1 to GUITAR (or VARIAX if that is what you use) and INPUT 2 to the opposite (ie: VARIAX if input 1 is guitar and GUITAR if input 1 is Variax). This is different from the default setting which will have INPUT 1 set to GUITAR + VARIAX + AUX and INPUT 2 set to SAME.    Or having INPUT 1 set to any value and INPUT 2 set to SAME, which means whatever input signal you use will also be sent down the INPUT 2 path,  "Using only one input" means you ensure the HD500 only uses just INPUT 1 by setting INPUT 2 to something other than SAME.

 

hurghanico has posted some fantastic sample recordings on soundcloud using this technique and has pretty much nailed every tone he attempted to copy.  The point is the lower input signal seems to render a better response from the modelling fx and amps.  In the same way, it seemed to me that the lower string volume also rendered a better response in the JTV models, because it was not over driving them with too loud a signal.  Your experience may be different but it's worth trying out to see what you think.

 

Hope that helps.

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     I have the same issue, but it cropped up when I had had the guitar for about 2 months.  The is a ringing feedback type noise that comes from the low E which is pretty annoying, but there are also clearly 2 tones coming from the high E and, to a lesser degree, the other two unwound strings in the alt tunings you have detailed and others.  

     Could you go into more detail about how to readjust my hand (no palm muting, continually mute the low E with left thumb?).  

     I bought the Variax for 3 reasons, the alt tunings, the guitar modeling and the tremolo bar.  I loved it until this problem cropped up.  It seems that we are the only two JT 69 players that have noticed this.  For me, it makes the guitar unplayable in all but standard tuning, drop D and open A.  I'm going to reflash the guitar several more times and, if the problem remains, open a repair ticket and see if they'll fix or replace the guitar.  If it can't be fixed, $1000 will go a long ways towards replacements, I think.

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     I have the same issue, but it cropped up when I had had the guitar for about 2 months.  The is a ringing feedback type noise that comes from the low E which is pretty annoying, but there are also clearly 2 tones coming from the high E and, to a lesser degree, the other two unwound strings in the alt tunings you have detailed and others.  

     Could you go into more detail about how to readjust my hand (no palm muting, continually mute the low E with left thumb?).  

     I bought the Variax for 3 reasons, the alt tunings, the guitar modeling and the tremolo bar.  I loved it until this problem cropped up.  It seems that we are the only two JT 69 players that have noticed this.  For me, it makes the guitar unplayable in all but standard tuning, drop D and open A.  I'm going to reflash the guitar several more times and, if the problem remains, open a repair ticket and see if they'll fix or replace the guitar.  If it can't be fixed, $1000 will go a long ways towards replacements, I think.

Sounds like your problem is a bit more involved than mine. If you check out the piezo crosstalk thread, I went into great, gory detail about the problem. It only affects the various drop D tunings (drop D, drop Db, open D). All the others are OK. Seems to be the result of low E piezo picking up vibrations from the A string when I'm palm muting. Check out that thread...it explains the whole thing. As far as "fixing" it...the only solution I've found is angleing my picking hand so that when palm muting the A string, I'm not touching the low E string at all...then the funky overtones disappear. However, this is easier said than done. I have no problems with any other strings.

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I had the same problem with my new JTV59P but that was something right out of the box so I sent it back. When I called Sweetwater, they told me they have seen this issue across the board with many folks complaining. Not sure what the solution is. 

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I have dealt with this issue on two JTV-69s guitars. I sent the first one back to Sweetwater. Second one I sent back to Line 6 directly for repair. Here are few suggestions.

 

1. Make sure that when you are listening to your guitar in alternate tuning that you put on good ear covering headphones and turn up the volume. If you can no longer hear the double (ghost) notes, then problem solved. If you can still hear them, I suggest you record the sound directly into Garageband or similar program. Line 6 will want to hear it.

 

2. Make sure that your pickups are not close to the strings. By that, I mean at least 10/64ths from strings to the pole pcs. According to L6, this can affect the sound coming through the piezo because of magnetic pull on the strings. Not sure if I subscribe to this theory, but they say it's true.

 

3. Make very sure that your guitar is perfectly intonated. If you have a strobe tuner, use it. I have found this really comes into play when you are using the "virtual capo" function to create your own tunings. It makes sense if you are creating a new tuning above and below the 12th fret, that they better be the correct notes. I had a problem with this until I checked my intonation. Once adjusted, it works well.

 

4. I agree with attempting to eliminate any extra vibration between the nut and tuners. I've also played with the idea of putting some thin padding between the saddles to prevent vibration transfer between saddles. I have yet to investigate that yet, but will.

 

5. If you have to send back your guitar to Line 6, INSIST that you want to send it back to the main headquarters. Regional repair centers may not have the same level of expertise when repairing your instrument.

 

That's it for now. My second guitar, after returning from a Line 6 repair seems to be working well. There is hope for you!!

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I have dealt with this issue on two JTV-69s guitars. I sent the first one back to Sweetwater. Second one I sent back to Line 6 directly for repair. Here are few suggestions.

 

1. Make sure that when you are listening to your guitar in alternate tuning that you put on good ear covering headphones and turn up the volume. If you can no longer hear the double (ghost) notes, then problem solved. If you can still hear them, I suggest you record the sound directly into Garageband or similar program. Line 6 will want to hear it.

 

2. Make sure that your pickups are not close to the strings. By that, I mean at least 10/64ths from strings to the pole pcs. According to L6, this can affect the sound coming through the piezo because of magnetic pull on the strings. Not sure if I subscribe to this theory, but they say it's true.

 

3. Make very sure that your guitar is perfectly intonated. If you have a strobe tuner, use it. I have found this really comes into play when you are using the "virtual capo" function to create your own tunings. It makes sense if you are creating a new tuning above and below the 12th fret, that they better be the correct notes. I had a problem with this until I checked my intonation. Once adjusted, it works well.

 

4. I agree with attempting to eliminate any extra vibration between the nut and tuners. I've also played with the idea of putting some thin padding between the saddles to prevent vibration transfer between saddles. I have yet to investigate that yet, but will.

 

5. If you have to send back your guitar to Line 6, INSIST that you want to send it back to the main headquarters. Regional repair centers may not have the same level of expertise when repairing your instrument.

 

That's it for now. My second guitar, after returning from a Line 6 repair seems to be working well. There is hope for you!!

1. Good idea.

2. I know thats what they told you, but it didn't make any sense then, and it still doesn't. If the mags were pulling the strings out of tune, then standard tuning wouldn't sound right either. And I still say that even if string pull is happening, it can't result in TWO DISTINCT PITCHES being heard...one slightly out of tune note, yes...but not two.

3. No argument there.

4. Made no difference for me, but your mileage may vary.

5. Glad its working, but what changed? When you first got it back you said the problem was still there...

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Cruisinon2 -

To be honest, I'm not sure what they did that made a difference. What they said they did (which I will post below) is not something I think would have solved the problem. I have a lot of guitars, and have been messing with them for 40 years, but I don't know everything - that's for sure. 

 

I have a sneaking suspicion that they may have changed out something more significant (board, piezo pickups etc.) but don't want to let that knowledge out in the general public. Kind of like how hesitant a car company is to be public about a problem because they fear they will be forced to do a recall. Again, this is just my imagination.

 

Here is the official feedback I got directly from Line 6 when they sent the guitar back to me. This was on their support ticket system. My comments in GREEN.

 

"Hi Steve,

Just letting you know that the guitar is in working order.

The issue with the ghost notes was due to the pickup height.

The bridge pickup was nearly touching the strings on the treble side and the magnetic pull of the pickup was physically pulling the strings out of tune. This was causing the doubling sound in the DSP.  
(I had it set up exactly to Fender specs. Should that really be too close?)

The neck and bridge were improperly adjusted so that strings were too high on the bass side and too low on the treble side. Also, the guitar had string buzz on E,A, and D.
(I set up the Low E around 6/64 and the high E at 5/64. The truss rod was set to have .010 clearance at the 8th fret. This works on all my other Strats and Teles)
 

The guitar was strung with 9s when it comes stock with 10s causing the intonation to be flat on 4 out 6 stings . (If they were flat it was by about 2 cents!)

The tension spring cover was on backwards. (Yeah it was. I usually keep it off. Rushed to put it on before shipping. Doubt it affected the tone...)

There was a foam pad lodged beside the nut causing the high E to mute.(Do you think if it was muting the E string I would have kept it there? Not likely)
We have adjusted the Neck, Intonation, Pickup height, Updated the flash memory, Adjusted the Trem Tension Springs, String Height and basically brought it back to stock spec.

It appears that the setup of the guitar was the issue. (my Bolding) In the future we ask that you keep 10s on the guitar (It’s intonated properly for that gauge now) and keep the same relative setup that we have provided. The guitar is basically made to work a certain way with a specific setup. I.e. a proper setup is required for the guitar to function correctly. We were happy to accommodate you with a setup this time and want you to enjoy the guitar but considering that both guitars were/are having the same problems we must assume that you are setting up these instruments improperly unless they came from Sweetwater this way. In the future if the guitar comes back and has setup issues we will have to charge our regular hourly rate of $90/hr for any other setups. If you need a guitar setup we recommend taking it to a local luthier. If you have a Guitar Center near you they usually have pretty reasonable prices."

Thanks,

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Through all my dealings with Line 6, I am left with a nagging feeling of mistrust. And, in my opinion, that is the one thing a company should prevent at all costs. Do you think I am motivated to purchase more products from them? There are many companies Line 6 could emulate who do it right. Sweetwater Music has been mentioned many times on this forum as a prime example of one such company that has earned a great deal of customer loyalty. They have mine!

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i have the same problem. My jtv 59 is 2+ years old so out of warranty.

nearest approved service centre 2 hours away.

really cheesed off this could happen.  there should be a product recall to get this right before jtv's become regarded as junk.

how do you reflash anyway?

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OK found how to reflash, did it 3 times.  Updated firmware.

The darn thing still sounds a discord on any string that is not in standard. nothing to do with setup - not changed a thing since new.

 

If I can only get this fixed I can sell it and buy a decent guitar.

 

(or even a $100 Korean job which would be superior to this junk at the moment)

 

Of course I could send it to head office for repair but that's in a different country.

I have hardly played it at all - REALLY disappointed in line 6

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OK found how to reflash, did it 3 times. Updated firmware.

The darn thing still sounds a discord on any string that is not in standard. nothing to do with setup - not changed a thing since new.

 

If I can only get this fixed I can sell it and buy a decent guitar.

 

(or even a $100 Korean job which would be superior to this junk at the moment)

 

Of course I could send it to head office for repair but that's in a different country.

I have hardly played it at all - REALLY disappointed in line 6

Generally, I'm loath to accept the set-up excuse as well. Alt. tuning problems wouldn't have anything to do with that anyway. Set-up related problems (fret buzz, etc) could conceivably result in some harsh artifacts in the modeling, but it has nothing to do with the tunings.

 

That being said, you have a guitar that is over 2 years old and you said that you haven't changed anything since it was new. Most guitars that are rarely played and have been sitting for that length of time are gonna be in need of a set-up. Things change on their own while it's sitting in a case. Wood is a like sponge. Changes in temperature and humidity can wreak havoc even if you never touch the thing.

 

As for the "discord" you describe,it is very possible that you are hearing the guitar acoustically, on-top of what your amp is spitting out. It fooled me at first. Unless you are playing at a volume suitable to drown out the guitar itself, you'd be surprised at how much you hear directly from the guitar. Try playing through headphones...crank it loud enough that you don't hear the raw guitar. Also, record something direct using one of the alt. tunings that is giving you trouble, and listen carefully to the playback. If the playback sounds normal, then the dissonance you're hearing is the result of hearing both the raw guitar and the altered notes simultaneously. If you have a POD, you can test this easily with the looper.

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When using alternate tunings, ANY crosstalk between pickups will cause problems.  Crosstalk doesn't cause any problems when in standard tuning. 

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no, using headphones turned up loud. pick very lightly and there are 2 notes about a semitone apart on each string that has a changed tuning.

the signal is definitely coming from the electronics.  It sounds awful and is unplayable in anything but standard tuning.

It has to be a software problem but I have done reflash, updated firmware.

Is there anything else? e.g can I reinstall all the software?

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no, using headphones turned up loud. pick very lightly and there are 2 notes about a semitone apart on each string that has a changed tuning.

the signal is definitely coming from the electronics. It sounds awful and is unplayable in anything but standard tuning.

It has to be a software problem but I have done reflash, updated firmware.

Is there anything else? e.g can I reinstall all the software?

That being the case, the only other possibility is that the mags and models are blending...this is a controllable feature that you can access in Workbench, though it seems unlikely, unless you had deliberately created such a model and flashed it to the guitar at some point.

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thanks. haven't created any custom models and only tried workbench for the first time to try to fix this problem, so I don't know much about the program.

I'm wondering if I should refresh every model etc.  blundering about in the dark here.

I did the reflash by holding down the model button and plugging in a jack then pushing model button again. I got the red flashes as described - assume that's all I can do.

 

Many thanks for your assistance

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I believe you were trying to do an "old school" firmware refresh.  That feature is not supported in firmware v2.x, which is likely what your instrument shipped with.  Please try installing Line6 Monkey, connect the guitar to your computer with the interface box and do a complete reflash of the current firmware.  When it asks if you want to preserve your customizations, answer "no". 

 

Either your guitar is defective (in which case this won't help) or, more likely, someone had it hooked to HD Workbench and blended in the mags.

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