Line 6 - Variax 300
The question "if we can model an amp, why can't we model guitars too?" has been answered by Line 6 with this Variax model. Its a simple structured bolt on neck, double cutaway style electric that at first glance looks as if it doesn't have any pickups. It uses a piezo style pickup system to send the signal to its computer chip which then translates it into well known guitar sounds you will set from its knob.
Here is what Line 6 said about it:
A couple of years before Variax was born, we decided to turn our attention from all that guitar gear to the guitar itself. We wondered - could it be possible to capture a complete range of this tone in one single instrument? It was a daunting task, but then so was the idea of squeezing a whole collection of amps and effects into one little kidney bean shaped metal box. So we figured, why not give it a go?
We knew our sounds would have to be amazingly accurate to meet the needs of discriminating guitarists, so we began an intensive research project into guitar physics. We assembled test guitars that would make Victor Frankenstein blush. We systematically examined every factor that contributes to a guitar's tone, and developed ways to measure the complex interactions of vibrating strings, resonant bodies, and magnetic pickups. More importantly, we developed ways to capture these interactions mathematically so we could get the same sounds from our guitar.
As we refined our measuring and modeling techniques, we began working on a new, powerful hardware platform that could deliver our shockingly accurate sounds. Variax needed to have less noise than a standard humbucker, the ability to switch sounds in the fraction of a second that it takes to slap a pickup selector switch to the next position, and be powered in a variety of ways. And, most importantly, perform so flawlessly that you could forget it's even there.
As the body and brain neared completion, it was time for us to create the soul. We auditioned an amazing array of vintage instruments to find the ones with the most distinctive voices and personalities. We applied our painstaking measuring techniques to these specimens, and refined our models while constantly referring back to the originals for accuracy. When the model reached the point not only sounding like the original, but also being as much fun to play, it was done.
The result of our labors?
Variax. An entire guitar collection in a single instrument.
-Comfort-contoured agathis body
-One piece maple neck with Indian rosewood fingerboard
-22 medium profile frets
-25 1/2" scale length
-12" fingerboard radius
-Standard 1/4" guitar output jack
-Digital I/O jack for PODxt Live, POD X3 Live, Vetta II, and Workbench connectivity
-Volume and tone controls respond faithfully for each model
-Includes XPS Mini power supply with 1/4" standard guitar output for connection to any guitar amp
-Powered by footswitch, on-board batteries, Vetta II, PODxt Live or POD X3 -Live
Variax 300 Models based on*:
-1960 Fender® Telecaster® Custom
-1968 Fender® Telecaster®
-1968 Fender® Telecaster® Thinline
-1959 Fender® Stratocaster®
-1958 Gibson® Les Paul® Standard
-1952 Gibson® Les Paul® "Goldtop"
-1961 Gibson® Les Paul® Custom (3 PU)
-1956 Gibson® Les Paul® Junior
-1976 Gibson® Firebird V
-1955 Gibson® Les Paul® Special
-1959 Gretsch® 6120
-1956 Gretsch® Silver Jet
-1968 Rickenbacker® 360
-1966 Rickenbacker® 360-12
-1961 Gibson® ES®-335
-1967 Epiphone® Casino
-1957 Gibson® ES-175
-1953 Gibson® Super 400
-1959 Martin® D-28
-1970 Martin® D 12-28
-1967 Martin® O-18
-1966 Guild® F212
-1995 Gibson® J-200
-1935 Dobro® Alumilite
-Coral/Dano® Electric Sitar
-Gibson® Mastertone Banjo
-1928 National® Style 2 "Tricone"
All product names used in this webpage are trademarks of their respective owners, which are in no way associated or affiliated with Line 6. These trademarks of other manufacturers are used solely to identify the products of those manufacturers whose tones and sounds were studied during Line 6’s sound model development.