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The Science and Magic Behind Variax Emulations

Variax® technology is often misunderstood. One of the reasons that it is so effective at recreating the sounds of other instruments lies in the fact that it is NOT a MIDI guitar. MIDI guitars trigger a series of samples or impulses based upon the data output of a special “hex” pickup. Because the pickup is only spitting out data, the age, size, and type of string used doesn’t really matter much. The strings can be completely dead, and yet the sound never changes because the sample being triggered hasn’t changed. Read More..

Recent Entries

Setting up a Reggae Stompbox

It’s almost impossible to not use the words “classic,” “clean” and “vintage” when talking about Reggae tones.  While these descriptions from the early days of reggae, rock and blues might be golden, we look to the future when revisiting such vital tones.  Critics and gear junkies rave about these definitive and integral sounds, but these […]

7 Essential Steps to Creating Your First Cover Band Marketing Plan – Part 2

1. Be Clear About Who Your Audience Is & What It Wants Intuitively, we think that by trying to appeal to as many people as possible we’ll get more bookings. In reality, the opposite is often true. Appeal to everyone and the chances are you’re actually appealing to no one in particular. It’s therefore a […]

7 Essential Steps to Creating Your First Cover Band Marketing Plan – Part 5

7. Create an Amazing Experience for Your Client (So They Can’t Wait to Tell the World About You) It’s important to understand that your client is taken on a journey when they book you. If you think that just by putting on a great show and rockin’ their party it’s enough, then think again. They […]

7 Essential Steps to Creating Your First Cover Band Marketing Plan – Part 1

It was Theodore Roosevelt that said “if you build it, they will come.” Now I’m not one to tell the 26th President of the USA whether he was right or wrong about that. But the world was a very different place in the early 1900s. If you’re Starbucks, then yes, there’s a good chance that […]

7 Essential Steps to Creating Your First Cover Band Marketing Plan – Part 4

5. Create a Promo Showreel That’s an Advert For Your Band This could be first on the list, as over the last three to five years video has become one of the key components in any cover band’s marketing arsenal. The cost to produce top-notch video has come down massively in the last few years. […]

7 Essential Steps to Creating Your First Cover Band Marketing Plan – Part 3

3. Produce Up to 7 Audio Tracks That Best Represent What You Do Choose your tracks carefully as they communicate to your prospective client the breadth of repertoire you can perform. Even a glance at a list of these tracks should tell the story of your band and what you can deliver. Remember that you […]

How to Record a Guitar Cover

In the modern world of social networking, smartphones and tablets, the process of recording a guitar cover has become a high-tech art form. Social media outlets such as YouTube have enabled many musicians to become self-publishers and share favorite cover songs for the world to critique. A huge aspect of recording cover songs is investing […]

Adjusting Your Setup from a Live Gig to a Recording Studio

As guitar players, we’re so obsessed with creating the best live tone possible that we easily forget about our studio setup. Sure, while our favorite amps, cabs and pedals might make for a killer tone in a spacious club, these “road tested” methods don’t necessarily translate seamlessly into the controlled, solid-state environment of a recording […]

The Gig Emergency Kit

We’ve all been there—those moments just before downbeat when you realize something is terribly wrong. Yes, as professional as we like to think we are, even the most seasoned touring veteran has those “oh crap” moments, where a piece of equipment is either malfunctioning or missing altogether. It’s the worst of feelings… but never again! […]

Setting up a Jazz Stompbox

When it comes to creating remarkable jazz tones, many guitarists agree it’s ideal to have a clean and straightforward sound. You don’t get jazz melodies through overdriven and futuristic effect pedals, but rather by modifying simple tones. Though some think it’s a sin to use an effects pedal for jazz, we think moderation is the […]

What to Look for in Your First Amp

Because your guitar is only as good as your amp allows it to be, it’s important to take as much care in selecting your first amp as you did your first guitar—you didn’t waltz in and grab the first battle axe on the shelf so you certainly shouldn’t do that with your amp! That said, […]

6 Proven Steps: The Fastest Way to Re-String a Guitar

Though re-stringing a guitar may seem like a daunting and time-consuming process, there are several simple tricks for a fast and flawless transition. Whether you’re a guitar tech or simply an enthusiast, these six steps will make it a breeze to change strings. 1. Use a Neck Cradle Placing a guitar in an upright position […]

Your Tone and the Advantages of Having Digital Pedals

When it comes to achieving the greatest guitar tone possible, it really comes down to three simple things; your instrument, your amp and your pedals. Assuming you’ve found your axe and amp of choice, the best tools you have for authoring your signature tone are your pedals. That said, in an effort to help you […]

Setting Up Your Stompbox for Rock

Stomboxes for guitarists are like ingredients for chefs: when used correctly, they add signature flavors.  Whether it’s a stompbox with 10 tones or a stompbox with 100 tones, it’s important to find the right balance of satisfying tastes.  When it comes to establishing a rock tone, you’ll mainly want to focus on getting the most […]

The James Tyler Variax and POD HD—Tips on Getting Acoustic Sounds

If I could point to one topic that I seem to get asked about the most, relative to the video content that I make for Line 6, it would have to be the subject of “how to get the best acoustic guitar sound out of a James Tyler Variax.” Personal messages, emails and YouTube comments […]

POD HD Amplifier Extras—Using the Sag, Bias and Bias Excursion Settings

POD HD Amplifier Extras—Using the Sag, Bias and Bias Excursion Settings It’s probably accurate to say that most of us haven’t checked out the extra features that were added to the power amp section of POD HD some time ago. Some people I talk to assume that they were parameters added to please a small […]

Creating and Working with Dual Signal Paths

Creating and Working with Dual Signal Paths Some POD HD processors* give you the ability to create two separate parallel processing chains. These dual signal paths allow you to process two different input signals in one POD patch—or process the same input differently—and offer a wealth of different sonic options that you can use to […]

Reason for Guitarists Like You’ve Never Seen Before

As a guitarist and a Reason user, I am a huge fan of producing guitar tracks with Reason. Recently, I saw a video that demonstrated this in a way that blew me away, and I wanted to share it with you.

But wait, there’s more: Just thinking of getting into computer recording? Did you know that for a price too low to print, Reason Essentials gives you unlimited audio tracks, unlimited virtual instrument tracks, plus Line 6 amp models in an easy-to-use software made for recording your ideas fast?

Creating a custom Nashville-tuned guitar with the James Tyler Variax and Workbench software

Variax Workbench software – the ultimate tool for creating custom instruments. Variax Workbench is the librarian software that now comes free with the James Tyler Variax. Since the manual for it is imbedded into the software itself, and the software doesn’t have an offline mode (meaning that you can’t run it without a Variax connected […]