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Vivek

Helix hardware reliability

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Hello everyone,

I'm considering purchase of a Helix. The posts here and on other media are very encouraging. Jason Sadites is doing a great job in explaining and promoting the Helix!

I'm a bit concerned about hardware though since I had a bad experience with Line6 earlier.

 

Many years ago, I purchased an XT Live. I used it only about 5 times. Then one day, when I turned it on, there was a backlight under LCD, some leds on switches but no response to any buttons. Then I searched the forums and found too many people had the "Sudden Blank Screen Syndrome". All had similar situation : Very slight use, sudden loss of response, only backlight and few LEDS on but no other response. It seems that it was a very common affair.
 

http://talk.philmusic.com/index.php?topic=218708.0 ( Collection of various posts on same issue)

https://www.diystompboxes.com/smfforum/index.php?topic=91949.0

Since I had purchased the box from another country, It was prohibitively expensive for me to courier the XT back to that country for repairs. I had an expensive but cute looking brick on my hands. There was no repair centre in my country. So I switched to other brands for last 10 years.

Now I'm seriously considering Line6 again but am being held back due to the past bad experience. 

I'm not trying to troll !! ( I have written DSP firmware for some boxes. I hand built many Analog effect boxes in last 30 years. I'm serious)

Please be kind to share your experiences regarding the reliability of the current HELIX hardware.

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Helix is very reliable. All equipment is capable of failure.

 

I know this will sound harsh, but if you can't get your high-tech equipment serviced in your country and it's prohibitively expensive to ship, stick with low-tech.

Guitar, amp pedal board. Simple. A $100 (or DIY) pedal fails, finish the show without it and replace it when convenient. A $1500 high tech computerized music device fails and you can't get it repaired, you're screwed.

 

Helix is very reliable. Murphy's Law applies.

 

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Mine has been on the floor 3-5 times a week for rehearsal and shows, tracked two EPs, and get's used at home almost every night that it's not at a show/rehearsal since December-ish of 2015 and I haven't had a single hardware issue. I did have to tighten the expression pedal up after about two years, but outside of that (which I wouldn't call an issue, just regular maintenance) not a single issue.

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Mine has been rock solid for 2+ years of gigs and rehearsals. But as rd2rk alluded to above, if the only place to get a BMW serviced was in Germany, and you live in North Dakota, you'd be better off with a Schwinn.

  • Haha 2

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i hate to be the party pooper rain on the parade sort of guy but sadly ‘reliable and trouble free’ has not been my experience. Starting with a non functioning soft touch button, a dead mic input and  now a dead jog wheel i’m trying to put aside money for shipping and repairs.. it is pretty un-usable at the moment except for plug and playing my existing presets unless i cart my laptop around.. it hasn’t had a hard gigging life and i still love it, it just doesn’t love me

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4 years and counting. Hauled it around twice a week for rehearsal and live playing, and much playing at home. 

 

Yes you are going to find a small percentage of failures, like with ANY manufactured device. 

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I wont offer any opinion, just what happened to me with my Helix floor, from 2016 to 2019;

 

2017: Joystick failure, sent for repair

2017; Joystick failure again, repaired myself (bad soldering job)

2018; scribble strip failure; swapped with a new one (ordered from the British Audio guys)

2019: another scribble failure: same as above

 

Now I moved to a Helix rack with controller: all good for now.

 

 

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My Helix has been fine for many years. That said, it could break tomorrow, just like all my other gear.

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I've had Helix floor since Feb of 2016.  I have gigged with it every weekend since.  It has been solid except for the mic preamp.  Earlier this year, when I tried to use it for the first time, I discovered it was blown.  Other than that, the unit has been solid.  

That being said, if you live in a country where getting your Helix serviced under warranty is going to be a problem, look elsewhere.

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My Helix is over four years old, and I've not had any issues with it... As others have said, though, I'd be hesitant to buy any piece of electronic gear if I knew getting it serviced was going to be difficult or impossible.

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Other than some occasionally unreliable footswitches, my has been running well for four years. I did have one scribble strip replaced, but that's it so far.

 

Helix seems as reliable as other gear you regularly setup, tear down, transport and step on.

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My joystick had to be replaced after very light use in my home.  It was under warranty; however, shipping was not cheap.

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I found out the official Line6 Distributor in my country. I will visit him and try and get my LIVE repaired. Hope the repair cost is reasonable.

 

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