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Roland GK-3 Pickup

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Being upfront - I don't know. Never tried. 


But I have some experience with some of this stuff. And, based on my limited experience with older gear.... 

NO, it doesn't work that way. 


The Roland/Boss stuff isn't using 'models', per se. They are using pre-recorded wave files that get recalled based on what you are playing. 




I know it sounds sort of Left Twix/Right Twix, but it really is different. 


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"Does the Roland GK-3, when paired with the Boss GP-10, work like a Variax as far as guitar modeling?"


Short answer is, the goal is the same, but they might take different approaches to get you there.  I think in the end that the results are probably close enough from either tech to satisfy the average user.  Cork sniffers may disagree.


My brother-in-law has been playing an older Strat Variax model for years and he really likes it.  So I was real excited about finally getting a JTV-59 (an absolutely gorgeous Cherry Sunburst in MINT condition) and days later a JTV-59P Goldtop in very, very good condition (just a few minor scuffs on the back of the body).  But after being told I couldn't put the pickups in that I wanted or put in the Sustainiac like I wanted, I gave up on the JTV.  Both of these guitars are now for sale just a couple of weeks after I bought them, which really sucks.


I decided to go the GP-10 route instead since it's a LOT cheaper (about $100 ~ $150) to just add a GK-3 to each of the guitars I already have and then be able to use any of those guitars with the GP-10.  And, if I really get into the MIDI synth thing or better modelers come out (which already have, but are still expensive), I can just switch out the GP-10 for the newer gear, rather than have to deal with admittedly a nice guitar, but with old (but still good sounding) tech in it.


I haven't received the GP-10 yet, so I can't speak to the sound quality vs the JTV.  I think that's subjective anyway and one might be better for some sounds and the other better for others.  The only issue I had sound wise with the JTV was the damn P90's in the 59P, which sound amazing tone wise but, like pretty much most P90's, have noise (which is one reason why I wanted to switch out the pickup to something quieter).  FWIW, the modeled version of the same pickups (I think, could be wrong) were dead quiet and pretty much spot on tone wise to the mags.


Maybe once I get the GP-10 I'll reconsider selling the JTV's.  But I think it would have to sound really bad in comparison to give up the flexibility it's going to give me by separating the guitar from the modeling.  I have to say that the JTV guitars are very nice guitars though, but they just couldn't do the few things I really need them to be able to do for the music I mostly play (Boston Tribute).  I think for most people, those issues wouldn't matter and they would be very happy with the JTV (especially if you have a supporting product from Line 6 like the Helix to go with it).

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