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Main :: Variax Guitars / Bass / Workbench

Acoustic models
by Martinyp on 2012-04-27 12:41:13.9790

I have just watched the new youtube video with Sean Halley introducing the features of the JTV v1.8 firmware. The acoustic sounds are amazing. I have a JTV-89 / POD HD 500 / DT25 dream rig setup. I plug the guitar into the POD with a VDI cable. The POD connects to the DT25 with an L6 link cable. I turn on the amp and POD, select an acoustic model on the JTV, select an acoustic preset on the POD and start strumming expecting gorgeous tones. Sorry no gorgeous tones. In fact it sounds as if my amp is broken.

I have been through EVERY preset on the POD HD500 that even remotely suggest "acoustic" including all the presets in the BASS/ACO/VOC setlist and I am totally lost. Most have no amp selected and the noise that comes out of the DT25 is just muffled rubbish.

How can I get the acoustic sounds that Sean demonstrates with just the dream rig? I don't have a mixing desk. I don't have a PA. I don't play gigs. I am not an acoustic purist. I am just a normal person who like to play guitar at home just for the fun of it.


Re: Acoustic models
by listercoleman on 2012-04-28 12:21:08.4590

This board seems almost dead. I have 44 views on my thread and not a single post.

I cannot help you as I don't know this guitar or the POD HD-500. But I might have some general help I can offer.

What happens if you run the guitar straight into either your DAW/interface if you have a setup like that ....or just straight into an amp? I found a similar deal to you in that my 600 sounds great into my DAW, not so great into my amps which are all tube....maybe a solid state would sound killer......and it sounds awful into the POD XT Live.

Having said that I have not tried to adjust the POD. Can't be bothered....I really just got it for cheap to use as a way to hook up to the computer. The modeled tones are decent though.

Anyway.... I would imagine the first thing you should do is kill all the effects and then dial the Drive way down so you are not getting distortion. Then I'd try a moderate amount of Treble about 6-ish, put the Bass around 3-5 to start and Mids about 4-7. This might be a good starting point. Dial in from there. Watch the Drive or Gain though..... this is where the distortion will come from. Obviously make sure no overdrive pedal is on anywhere of course. Sorry if these suggestions assume you are a total newb to amps and all .... just covering bases.

Also.....on the XT Live there are patches starting at Bank 17-20 something that are Variax optimized. If the HD has those have you tried them?

If you have a DAW with a S/PDIF input, I reckon you could connect that HD-500 that way as it has a S/PDIF out. This will give you 2 channels (stereo) of pure digital audio going into the DAW. No preamps to color the sound or whatever.

Good luck with it. I wish someone could help me out and answer my thread "Frustrated...." I am going nuts trying to sort out an older setup.

Re: Acoustic models
by mrmykl on 2012-04-28 12:39:16.4410

Hey, one simple thing to check it the output setting on the HD500.  It's just to the left of the expression can set it for either a PA or amp...set it to amp...also, really, a full range speaker is best designed for the acoustic sounds...I gig with the Tyler and an HD500 and don't even use an amp.  Don't give up, it really is a dream just have to make it what you want it to be.  You cannot get a more versatile or better sounding guitar.  Nope.  Can't do it.

Re: Acoustic models
by listercoleman on 2012-04-28 13:46:31.9260

Good thought. Mine was inadvertently turned up way high when I got it and the thing was nasty sounding. I agree with mrmykl......just keep at it and you will have a killer setup. That is great kit you have there.

mrmykl, sorry to ask you here but are you able to weigh in on any of my troubles? I am pulling my hair out. Maybe if I was a Windows PC user it would be different.

Re: Acoustic models
by mrmykl on 2012-04-28 14:18:01.1170

I can't find the thread, listercoleman, post a link...i'll check it out...

Re: Acoustic models
by mrmykl on 2012-04-28 23:15:02.5560

Oh, yeah, Mac stuff is not my forte...sorry!

Re: Acoustic models
by listercoleman on 2012-04-29 23:25:46.6110

Thanks for taking a look mrmyki!

Re: Acoustic models
by seanhalley on 2012-05-07 12:36:38.0280

So I'm slow, what can I say? This may be my first post ever on here...


The idea behind acoustic guitars is that they traditionally do not sound luscious and gorgeous when played through an electric guitar amp. The circuits and speakers of amps intended to be used with Strats and Les Pauls are designed to roll out some frequencies you'd want on an acoustic (most guitar speakers do not reproduce frequencies above 4.5 K much at all), and roll in some that you wouldn't (low mids).

This is proven by the large number of acoustic guitar amplifiers on the market.

The reality is, you need a full-range amplification system to hear acoustic guitars properly - even if that is just headphones. That could mean a PA, a recording into your DAW and out into studio speakers, or some other combination.

The acoustic sounds in the video were recorded directly out of the HD500 - with the amp block dead, no amp selected - straight into Pro Tools. Try starting with a completely empty setup and begin to add elements of what you want to hear. Maybe that's reverb at the end of the chain first, and then maybe an eq early on, and then maybe the tube limter....etc etc...let your ears be the guides you use.

And the other key to being able to get the sounds I did on the video: don't bang away with your right hand :-) Think of the acoustics as females - they're dang sensitve :-) :-)

Hope that helps,


Re: Acoustic models
by Martinyp on 2012-05-19 06:26:47.2320

Thanks Sean.

I went ahead and bought an active studio monitor (Rokit RP5) just for use with the acoustic guitar models on my JTV. This came highly recommended as an affordable FRFR monitor. After some advice on other forums I connected this up to the FX send of the HD500 but starting with just a basic empty patch (amp block dead) and the FX loop after the mixer all the "dry" acoustic models are really boomy sounding. (My monitor volume roughly equates to that of an actual acoustic guitar) If I move the FX loop to before the mixer on the HD500 the signal going out to the monitor is too quiet meaning I need to turn the volume of the monitor up to maximum just to hear anything. Doing this really affects the overall sound badly. The solution I have found to the boominess is tweaking the preset with way too many EQ's and effects. The negative side is the character of the acoustic model is changed so drastically it could be almost any guitar.

I saw your latest video demonstrating layering with both mag and variax pickups sending the mag signal to a DT amp and the acoustic variax signal to Pro Tools. This inspired me to try the same thing with my "dream rig" but send the XLR output of the HD500 to the active monitor instead of a PC. As I don't have a second expression pedal to control the Plexi model volume I created the preset following your instructions but simply turned the amp in path "A" off to silence it. With all other settings exactly the same as your demo I could not replicate your results at all. The split path between the mags and the variax pickups was just not happening. I was getting just a small amount of sound out of the monitor regardless of whether I had the mags or the variax pickups selected on the JTV. If I turned on the Plexi model amp in the preset I would hear that coming out of the monitor and the DT25 at the same time.

It is a shame that I am such an incompetent fool with this aspect of the equipment as I am totally happy with the JTV/HD500/DT25 when used as a "traditional" electric guitar setup.

Re: Acoustic models
by silverhead on 2012-05-19 07:18:13.6290

Have you updated your JTV firmware to the latest release v1.82? This allows you to reduce the 'boominess' of the acoustic models by using the Tone knob.

Re: Acoustic models
by Martinyp on 2012-05-20 06:47:12.5130

I just updated the firmware and I would say things are a little better. I actually found the biggest error I had made was panning everything in the mixer to the left (I only have one studio monitor as a stereo signal is not important to me). The next biggest error I had made was having the variax selected as both input source 1 and 2. I selected input source 2 as MIC as I knew this will never have anything plugged in to it and the sound cleared up even more straight away. This was most notable with the 12 string models and anything using an altered tuning. (less warble)

The cable supplied with the monitor was 1/4" mono jack to XLR which initially seemed ideal for connecting to the FX loop on the HD500 however this was just a workaround I had heard about on the forums. From what I have read the correct way of using the HD500 with the acoustic models of the JTV would be to use the balanced XLR or unbalanced outputs direct to a mixing desk, studio monitors or PA. To see if there was any improvement to the sound I plugged the studio monitor into the left 1/4" unbalanced output of the HD500 but there is no noise at all through the monitor.

What am I doing wrong?

Should there be an improvement in sound of the JTV acoustic models using the balanced / unbalanced outputs of the HD500 direct to a studio monitor compared to using the FX loop?

The information above may not be current, and you should direct questions to the current forum or review the manual.