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I was told there are no parts available for the original Variax types 500 and 700. Is this true or just a rumor?

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depends on what parts you need... the coffin assembly or internal boards are probably gone... but knobs, jackplates, piezo's etc can usually be had.

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It was a rumor. They're slow when restocking items, so be patient.

Like Zap said, maybe not every single part is available anymore, but a lot of common things still get restocked.

 

I think the most common thing you'll want are the piezos, since those go out the fastest.

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Thanks for the replies. It's great that most common parts are still available, but if the board goes bad, does this mean it won't be able to get it fixed even at a Line 6 certified repair place?

 

Thanks

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You should still be able to get the main board fixed at a Line 6 service centre. Line 6 still supports the products, and likely maintains an inventory of the main boards. The reason that they are not available separately is that they never were. You need to purchase a guitar in order to get the main board. If you already have the guitar they can fix/replace the board - but you can't get just the board. Never could.

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Thanks,

 

I don't need a separate board, though I know many who did custom guitars that way. I just want to be sure the guitar is still fixable. Thanks again.

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Yeah, I'm really happy that Line 6 is still helping people out. Some guy sent their Acoustic Variax to get the piezos fixed and they did.

 

They're still helping repairs 100%, and the supplies are still here.

You can dismiss whoever made that rumor.

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My local Line 6 service agent in Sydney has been most helpful, however... relevent to this question is my experience with supply of parts, specifically jackplates.

 

It took 3 months to get a couple of jackplates delivered to Australia (I WAS told it would take 5-6 weeks) and upon delivery, I found the new jackplates being supplied for all electric variaxes (obviously being made for the Tyler versions) are in fact slightly different and a wee bit of hammer and chisel work was required in order to make it fit into my 300. Maybe no big problem, but the info coming down the line (they knew the model it was being ordered for), was zero regarding any difference in the new jackplate. That is until I ranted a bit in their general direction regarding the tardy supply, and the obvious structural difference.

 

It seems piezos are plentiful, as they should be I guess. However with a current problem with mine, I am seriously considering digging deep, and grabbing some Graphtechs - it seems they are a vast improvement on the Baggs variety.

 

As a post-script, the local agent did offer to do the jackplate replacement for me, including pick up and delivery via courier, but I figured it'd take far less time and energy for me to do the job myself. It WAS in parts on my desk after all, so the sooner I cleaned it up the better....

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I am , I almost hate to say, addicted to my Variax, for recording purposes. I can't imagine having to tweak and fuss to get noise levels down anymore. I reserve that pain for vocals. With the Variax, you just need to pick it up, select an instrument, and all the fuss is in finding a tone you like from whatever amp models you're using. But choosing a tone is a pleasant experience rather than a frustrating one. So, if my Vax breaks it sets me back to the Stone Age again. Of course there's always the new Variax option but who has an extra grand or so just sitting around these days? On the other hand, who wouldn't want the pristine JTV tone? I'm not just saying this because I'm on a Line 6 forum. I've had my Variax 700 electric for 11 years.

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I am , I almost hate to say, addicted to my Variax, for recording purposes. I can't imagine having to tweak and fuss to get noise levels down anymore. I reserve that pain for vocals. With the Variax, you just need to pick it up, select an instrument, and all the fuss is in finding a tone you like from whatever amp models you're using. But choosing a tone is a pleasant experience rather than a frustrating one. So, if my Vax breaks it sets me back to the Stone Age again. Of course there's always the new Variax option but who has an extra grand or so just sitting around these days? On the other hand, who wouldn't want the pristine JTV tone? I'm not just saying this because I'm on a Line 6 forum. I've had my Variax 700 electric for 11 years.

 

Are you talking about the ground noise on a guitar? I too really appreciate the absolute silence of a Variax. I hate floor noise.

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I was told in a support ticket that there are no replacement parts (ie. mainboard, other major components) for the legacy Variax guitars.  My Variax 500 failed a firmware flash update midway through which bricked it.  And after months of waiting and bitching on the old forums, was told basically I'm screwed.  They recommended I take it to a local Authorized repair shop - they wanted $45 just to look at it, and $65/hr to do repairs.  Since L6 told me there are no replacement parts, why spend money on nothing?

 

I did buy the replacement input jack assembly from FullCompass only to find it is for a 300/500/600.  The internals of my 500 won't let it just "plug-n-play" - without major parts being moved or removed.  That didn't work either (plugging it all up but not seating the new assembly.  In the end, I ended up accidentally RIPPING off the piezo flat cable from the mainboard in trying to just reassemble the old parts again after countless hours troubleshooting and trying firmware updates from 5 different computers, 3 different operating systems, 2 different HD500s (with and without the usb interface)......

 

I now am the unhappy owner of an acoustic only Variax 500 with non-functioning internals and the only thing I can do is:

 

1)  Sell for parts

2)  Keep and buy another cheap 300/500/etc for donor parts

3)  Rip out all digital components and install normal pickups/pots/wiring....

 

 

 

Thanks for the replies. It's great that most common parts are still available, but if the board goes bad, does this mean it won't be able to get it fixed even at a Line 6 certified repair place?

Thanks

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The 500 models are probably the oldest models made. Sorry to hear of your issues though.

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I was told in a support ticket that there are no replacement parts (ie. mainboard, other major components) for the legacy Variax guitars.  My Variax 500 failed a firmware flash update midway through which bricked it.  And after months of waiting and bitching on the old forums, was told basically I'm screwed.  They recommended I take it to a local Authorized repair shop - they wanted $45 just to look at it, and $65/hr to do repairs.  Since L6 told me there are no replacement parts, why spend money on nothing?

 

I did buy the replacement input jack assembly from FullCompass only to find it is for a 300/500/600.  The internals of my 500 won't let it just "plug-n-play" - without major parts being moved or removed.  That didn't work either (plugging it all up but not seating the new assembly.  In the end, I ended up accidentally RIPPING off the piezo flat cable from the mainboard in trying to just reassemble the old parts again after countless hours troubleshooting and trying firmware updates from 5 different computers, 3 different operating systems, 2 different HD500s (with and without the usb interface)......

 

I now am the unhappy owner of an acoustic only Variax 500 with non-functioning internals and the only thing I can do is:

 

1)  Sell for parts

2)  Keep and buy another cheap 300/500/etc for donor parts

3)  Rip out all digital components and install normal pickups/pots/wiring....

 

That's really strange, because some guy turned his Acoustic Variax in and they fixed it for him.

 

I really don't get it too much, maybe it depends on what's broken.

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Since Bluesman has a 500 I think by "acoustic only" he meant only playable "unplugged".

Ah, sorry, misread that. I'm not sure how different the original 500 is from the other Variaxes, but if it's not that different, he shouldn't have trouble sending it in for repairs.

 

I know what he means though about it being ridiculously expensive. I would of had to pay 60 dollars minimum for a basic solder job, and I bet you that they would have charged even more just because they can, even though the job only costs like 10-15 dollars to do. (tools to disassemble and solder kit)

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Ah, sorry, misread that. I'm not sure how different the original 500 is from the other Variaxes, but if it's not that different, he shouldn't have trouble sending it in for repairs.

 

I know what he means though about it being ridiculously expensive. I would of had to pay 60 dollars minimum for a basic solder job, and I bet you that they would have charged even more just because they can, even though the job only costs like 10-15 dollars to do. (tools to disassemble and solder kit)

 

 

Yes, I meant my electric can only play unplugged, not an acoustic model.

 

This info is coming directly from Line 6, and I had a lengthy post on the old forum about it.  I was told by several different L6 Tech's through the support ticket system here that since my v500 was WAY out of warranty, there was nothing they could do, except offer for me to take it to an Auth Serv Ctr.  And since they told me there are no more parts available (I assume that means the Serv Ctr can't get either), there is no reason for me to set fire to my money. 

 

So I continue to scour the internet for another affordable donor variax (I bought mine used for $200).  If I can't find a 500 or 700, any other model board is different and I will have to mod my 500 to make it all work.  I miss the flexibility my Variax provided, and refuse to buy $1000+ new JTV.  Especially since I know L6 will disavow folks in the future when their JTV is out of parts and no longer functions.  I guess the thing that makes me maddest is that the JTV is most likely using a similar board and connection setup.  You'd think they would offer to just sell me the board, or quote a fix with updated parts (which would be super expensive, I guess).

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Could losing battery power be caused by a bad jack plate? My 700 electric has lost battery power, but works with the power supply.

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Do you leave your instrument cable plugged?  I've heard that this drains the battery (even without active playing).

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Do you leave your instrument cable plugged? I've heard that this drains the battery (even without active playing).

That is true, and I have done that before. But this time it wouldn't work even with new batteries. I thought it might be the jack plate cause I was inserting and reinserting the jack repeatedly when it seemed to be fading out before it quit working.

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Yes, I meant my electric can only play unplugged, not an acoustic model.

 

This info is coming directly from Line 6, and I had a lengthy post on the old forum about it.  I was told by several different L6 Tech's through the support ticket system here that since my v500 was WAY out of warranty, there was nothing they could do, except offer for me to take it to an Auth Serv Ctr.  And since they told me there are no more parts available (I assume that means the Serv Ctr can't get either), there is no reason for me to set fire to my money. 

 

So I continue to scour the internet for another affordable donor variax (I bought mine used for $200).  If I can't find a 500 or 700, any other model board is different and I will have to mod my 500 to make it all work.  I miss the flexibility my Variax provided, and refuse to buy $1000+ new JTV.  Especially since I know L6 will disavow folks in the future when their JTV is out of parts and no longer functions.  I guess the thing that makes me maddest is that the JTV is most likely using a similar board and connection setup.  You'd think they would offer to just sell me the board, or quote a fix with updated parts (which would be super expensive, I guess).

Let's be really about this - Line 6 should keep a supply of repair parts for all their guitars...period!

Hey people don't have to worry about getting parts to fix their 50 year Gibson & Fender guitars.

Eventually people will stop buying stuff from companies like Line 6 who sell a product and than tells the customer to fu@k off when they need to get a part to fix it.

If you can't depend on a company to support their product than you can't depend on that product to use on gigs - because it will eventually break down and become obsolete.

Guitars traditionally don't become obsolete.

Line 6 needs to rethink this whole issue.

They suck for even considering dropping support on any of their instruments.

Yeah that makes me really want to run right out and drop $1500 on a new Variax that they'll drop support on a few years from now - N O T !

I'd rather go back to using my other guitars!

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If you can't depend on a company to support their product than you can't depend on that product to use on gigs - because it will eventually break down and become obsolete.

Guitars traditionally don't become obsolete.

 

I agree with both these statements, and I do expect Line 6 will support the JTV for quite a while. How long replacement parts will be available, I don't know. It probably depends somewhat how many they end up selling. The thing is, though, the Variax isn't anything like a traditional guitar in many important ways. Sure, it's an electric guitar, and can function as such (the JTV as least), but the electronics will become obsolete. So in that respect the Variax is more like a keyboard than a guitar. I suspect the useful life of a JTV will be longer than that of keyboards, but I don't expect it to last a lifetime, necessarily.

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I agree with both these statements, and I do expect Line 6 will support the JTV for quite a while. How long replacement parts will be available, I don't know. It probably depends somewhat how many they end up selling. The thing is, though, the Variax isn't anything like a traditional guitar in many important ways. Sure, it's an electric guitar, and can function as such (the JTV as least), but the electronics will become obsolete. So in that respect the Variax is more like a keyboard than a guitar. I suspect the useful life of a JTV will be longer than that of keyboards, but I don't expect it to last a lifetime, necessarily.

parts is parts

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I've since sold my non-functioning variax 500 for $100 to a guy interested in either making a midi host out of it - or just routing it for passives.  Such a shame.  It was a quality constructed (warmoth supplied, I'm sure) guitar.  The only way I'd ever get another Variax or JTV is if someone gives me one for free.  I look forward to the day when my HD500 fails........And then I will NEVER buy another L6 product.

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but in the meantime you'll freely give your time to troll Line6 forums to complain about your 10 year old electronic device failing.

well, thanks...

 

f6due.gif

I've since sold my non-functioning variax 500 for $100 to a guy interested in either making a midi host out of it - or just routing it for passives.  Such a shame.  It was a quality constructed (warmoth supplied, I'm sure) guitar.  The only way I'd ever get another Variax or JTV is if someone gives me one for free.  I look forward to the day when my HD500 fails........And then I will NEVER buy another L6 product.

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Just because you're willing to waste money on something that will not be supported, feel free.  Don't dump on me because I like L6 products, I just hate the customer service and support.  There is still a 1st Amendment right?  That hasn't been banned. 

 

ps.  I have a Playstation 2 that sill works like a champ - so stop pissing on my back about failed electronics.

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so you're going to complain that i exercised my very same right, to point out the irony in your drama queen antics.

I guess that amendment only applies to those that agree with you.

 

  There is still a 1st Amendment right?  That hasn't been banned. 

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No, you have a right to speak your mind.  I don't have to agree with you, and I'm allowed to retort just the same.  If you're a L6 employee, or just a L6 gear parasite - you'd think you'd show a little more compassion.  But since all you have to say is negative lollipop, and you choose to target me with your BS comments - I'll continue to speak my mind and converse with forum peeps whenever, however I want to include replying in kind to you.

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I don't expect my 700 to last forever, and I'd buy a new Variax if I could when it breaks. It's not an item like a standard guitar that almost anyone can fix. Big difference between installing a pickup and trouble shooting a board. You need a bench and a book and likely some experience to do that. Can't reprogram it either unless you have the code and the software. So, it's sort of like a computer that becomes obsolete. I know we all think in terms of vintage axes, but today is different. Who fixes a broken TV anymore? Maybe some do, but likely we go out and spend a lot if money on a new one. Most electronics are throw away now. Phones for example. It's a new world for guitars too. I got ten years out of my Variax , and may get more. But since the technology keeps changing, and since the manufacturing methods use throw away parts, and since the Variax is different than any other guitar, parts will never be standardized as for regular guitars. Companies have warranty limits because they know they can't keep supporting old products forever. Example, I have a four track cassette vintage 1993 Marantz. I paid a grand for it. Try getting it refurbished today. Suffice it to say, I understand both the customer's frustration and Line 6's need to move on to new things.

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True.  I have thrown away at least 20K worth of obsolete PC's and at least 5K worth of obsolete TV's. (But I still have my first guitar that my parents bought me back in 1967)

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Please stop with the TV analogy. TVs last usually at least 10 years. TVs are a completely different product anyways. A company will release many many different TV models, but Line 6 only has a few Variax models that have interchangeable hardware. Guitars are expected to last for more than a few years, ok.

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Just because you're willing to waste money on something that will not be supported, feel free.  Don't dump on me because I like L6 products, I just hate the customer service and support.  There is still a 1st Amendment right?  That hasn't been banned. 

 

ps.  I have a Playstation 2 that sill works like a champ - so stop pissing on my back about failed electronics.

...and i have a 50 year old skil saw that still works. ha!

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Those of you here that are bashing me for my old-fashioned beliefs, fine - whatever.  I don't know you, and I honestly don't care what you think.  I believe companies need to back their products, and their customers - even a 10+ year old product (I bet you that Jim Marshall's Employees don't lollipop on customers that have 10+ year old equipment.)  Otherwise they are no better than China shipping us wads of lead made to look like children's toys.  And yes I understand that we are in a disposable age where no one gives a lollipop about reliability anymore.  We've been taught that it's normal and our peers tell us the same, and we're all Lemmings for going along with it. 

 

I have a hard time believing the new Variax has a board/electronics so different from the old Variax.  I came here looking for answers beyond what L6 was able to give.  I thought there might be a slim hope that someone else had the issue and might have that magical fix.  I know better now, and I won't be back for assistance from you so-called "L6 Pros".  So throw your hate and negativity at me, I just don't give a lollipop anymore (hey, I should work for L6!).....

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I bet you that Jim Marshall's Employees don't lollipop on customers that have 10+ year old equipment.

 

Well, Marshall's standard warranty is 5 years parts, and 3 years labor, I believe... I don't know what they would do after 10 years. A 10 year old Marshall amp is probably more easily repaired than a 10 year Variax, though, simply because of the nature of what they are. Although, many of Marshall's amps do use printed boards now, and I imagine they have limitations as to how long they keep such things in stock.

 

I have a hard time believing the new Variax has a board/electronics so different from the old Variax.

 

Well, they are completely different boards. I imagine that there is some overlap between the components on the boards, but that's kind of a moot point. Beyond some very easily fixable things, virtually no one does repairs on the boards themselves. They'll replace the whole thing. That's kind of the way the world works now.

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in the simplest of language your expectations simply do not align with reality.... sorry...

 

should we try and sugarcoat that? or give it to you straight....

 

well my straight talk does not intend to offend...

sorry you are having issues... the fix that you seek is to pretty much find a broken donor on ebay.

 

if it's worth it to you to do so....

if it's not worth it, you wouldn't be here kicking up a fuss would you?

 

what exactly is your issue? can't expect to get much offered in the way of a fix without disclosing that.

 

 

Those of you here that are bashing me for my old-fashioned beliefs, fine - whatever.  I don't know you, and I honestly don't care what you think.  I believe companies need to back their products, and their customers - even a 10+ year old product (I bet you that Jim Marshall's Employees don't lollipop on customers that have 10+ year old equipment.)  Otherwise they are no better than China shipping us wads of lead made to look like children's toys.  And yes I understand that we are in a disposable age where no one gives a lollipop about reliability anymore.  We've been taught that it's normal and our peers tell us the same, and we're all Lemmings for going along with it. 

 

I have a hard time believing the new Variax has a board/electronics so different from the old Variax.  I came here looking for answers beyond what L6 was able to give.  I thought there might be a slim hope that someone else had the issue and might have that magical fix.  I know better now, and I won't be back for assistance from you so-called "L6 Pros".  So throw your hate and negativity at me, I just don't give a lollipop anymore (hey, I should work for L6!).....

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