Line 6 - Firehawk Floor Processor with Variax VDI Input

Started by Elantric, January 22, 2015, 11:07:19 AM

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Firehawk FAQ
Jan 02 2015 09:10 AM | Line6Drew in Firehawk

Full List and Descriptions of FIREHAWK FX Amps, Cabs, and Effects

· 29 HD Amp Models
· 25 HD Effects Models
· 78 POD Farm Amp Models
· 95 POD Farm Effects Models
· 8 simultaneous effects
· 128 Onboard Presets
· 5 FX on/off, channel and bank footswitches with colored LED rings
· 1/4" 1M-Ohm guitar input, VDI (Variax), Expression Pedal
· Onboard tone controls, plus Volume, Wah, and FX Knob
· USB connection to use Firehawk as an audio interface with your recording programs
· Balanced XLR Main Outs, 1/4" stereo full-range balanced outputs, 1/4" Amp Out, 1/4" TRS Headphone Output
· 1/4" Send, with Stereo 1/4" Returns, switchable
· Bluetooth Audio Streaming and Control for playing along with your music library (compatible with iOS, Android, Mac and PC)
· Detailed editing via Bluetooth® Remote app for Android and iOS
· Tone Searching
· Tap tempo/tuner
· Power Switch
· Rugged construction with bent metal chassis
· Weight: 7 lbs 6 oz
· Dimensions: H: 3" W: 17 3/4" D: 9 1/4"

FIREHAWK FX Remote app Specs
· Remotely control amp parameters to dial in your sound
· Search a cloud-based library of thousands of tones
· Create, save and recall unlimited presets in the cloud
· Share tones via Twitter and Facebook
· Automatic tone matching instantly provides the perfect tones for jamming with songs in your music library
· Compatible with iOS 8.0+. Made for iPhone® 6 Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5, iPhone 4s, iPhone 4, iPad® (3rd and 4th generation), iPad 2, iPad mini and iPod touch® (5th generation)
· Compatible Android devices running OS v4.2 or better: Samsung® Galaxy S®5, Samsung Galaxy S4, Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy Note® Pro, Samsung Galaxy Note II, HTC® One M8, HTC One M7, Motorola® Moto® X, Google® Nexus® 7, Amazon Kindle Fire HDX, ASUS® MeMo Pad 8, ASUS Fonepad, ASUS PadFone, LG® G2, LG Optimus, LG F7, LG Nexus 4. Generally speaking, although not qualified, any Android phone, tablet or phablet will work, provided it is able to run the required Android OS version.

Q: What type of devices can FIREHAWK FX stream Bluetooth audio from?
A: Firehawk FX can stream Bluetooth audio from any Android™ device, iOS device, and Mac® or PC equipped with Bluetooth.

Q: How do I pair my Bluetooth device with FIREHAWK FX?
A: To pair the Firehawk FX with your Bluetooth device:
· Enable Bluetooth on the device you would like to stream audio from.
· Put the FIREHAWK FX into 'Pairing Mode' by pressing and holding the Bluetooth button located to the left of the FIREHAWK FX logo- it will begin to flash to indicate it is in 'Pairing Mode'.
· Within the Bluetooth options of your device an entry for 'FIREHAWK FX' will appear.
· Select the 'FIREHAWK FX' entry and pair with it - the Bluetooth LED will stop flashing and become solidly lit blue.

Q: How do I update the FIREHAWK FX's firmware?
A: We always recommend that you run the latest firmware on your FIREHAWK FX. Your FIREHAWK FX Remote application will inform you whenever a firmware update is available, so you'll always know you have the latest version!

Q: What Bluetooth version is used in FIREHAWK FX? What Bluetooth codecs are supported?
A: We use a Bluetooth solution that supports Bluetooth 2.1. We only support the SBC codec at this time.

Q: How can I reset the FIREHAWK FX to its default settings?
A: To perform a factory reset and restore the FIREHAWK FX to factory settings, press and hold the Master Volume knob and the TAP button as you power up the unit.

Q: What can I do if I am experiencing Bluetooth connectivity issues between my Bluetooth device and the FIREHAWK FX?
A: For troubleshooting steps about Bluetooth connectivity and usage, check out our
Bluetooth Connectivity FAQ HERE.

Q: What should I do If I am experiencing connection issues with the FIREHAWK FX Remote app when I switch back and forth between apps on my iOS device?
A: An important thing to note about the FIREHAWK FX Remote app functionality is that in addition to the iOS Bluetooth connection between your FIREHAWK FX and your iOS device, there is a secondary 'sync' connection between the amp and the app. Each time you minimize/close the app, the connection between the FIREHAWK FX Remote app and the FIREHAWK FX will need to be re-established, even if your iOS device is reporting that the FIREHAWK FX is connected via 'Bluetooth'. In this case, re-opening the FIREHAWK FX Remote app will automatically re-establish the connection within a few seconds.

Make sure to look at the main menu of the FIREHAWK FX Remote app and wait for it to indicate that your FIREHAWK FX is 'connected' before moving forward using the app. If it does not automatically re-connect, close the FIREHAWK FX Remote app by double-tapping your iOS home key, then sliding the FIREHAWK FX Remote app window up and off the screen. Relaunch the FIREHAWK FX Remote app and it should re-sync itself with the FIREHAWK FX. Android devices usually have a function that lists all open programs where you can slide the app left or right to close it. Relaunch the FIREHAWK FX Remote app and it should re-sync itself with the hardware.

Q: Can the FIREHAWK FX Remote App stream songs that are stored in the cloud and not on my mobile device?
A: No. The FIREHAWK FX Remote App can only play back songs that are stored on your mobile device. Within the FIREHAWK FX Remote App settings, you can enable 'Hide Songs Not On Device' so that you only see songs that are stored on your mobile device when playing music from your Library. The Android app does not have this setting, but still only plays back songs stored on the device.

Q: How can I search for a specific tone if I don't have the song or artist in my Library?
A: To search for a specific tone, go to your Library within FIREHAWK FX Remote and pick any artist, then one of their albums, and then any song. This will begin to play the song and present you with a list of tones that match the song that is playing. You can then swipe down from the top of the tone list to unveil a 'Search Tone Cloud' field where you can search for an artist or song name to find tones without having the song or artist in your library.

Q: Can I use the FIREHAWK FX Remote app to load or edit tone files from my other existing Line 6 products?
A: The FIREHAWK FX Remote app is only compatible with tone files created with the AMPLIFi family of products.

Q: Can I use the FIREHAWK FX Remote app with a Line 6 Mobile In or Sonic Port?
A: No. The FIREHAWK FX Remote app is only compatible with the FIREHAWK FX pedal board.

Q: What is the USB input on the back panel of FIREHAWK FX for?
A: It's used to update the unit with a Windows computer, and to record to your DAW.

Q: Where can I register my FIREHAWK FX?
A: After logging into or creating a Line 6 user account HERE,
you can go HERE
and enter in your serial number that is found on the bottom of your FIREHAWK FX, it begins with '(21)PTM', simply fill in the remaining digits.

Q: Where can I provide my feedback or make a suggestion about FIREHAWK FX?
A: We encourage you to visit our IdeaScale portal HERE
and let us know about your ideas and suggestions.

Q: Is there a forum where I can discuss FIREHAWK FX with other FIREHAWK FX users?
A: We have a forum dedicated specifically to Firehawk FX available HERE.

Q: Where can I find information on the warranty that is included with the FIREHAWK FX?
A: You can find all of the available information on the Firehawk FX's warranty HERE.

Q: What do I if my FIREHAWK FX is in need of repair?
A: You can find all of the available information on how to arrange a repair HERE.




Hey folks. Here are a couple of videos that may help you get a bit more out of your Firehawk.

How to use the Firehawk FX Looper -

How to use the Firehawk FX Live Edit -


Reviewed in Guitarist issue 397
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TOP 10 Reasons to Own a Line 6 Firehawk FX unit! LINKS BELOW ...

10 Reasons to Own a Line 6 Firehawk FX
The Tone King | Jul 31, 2015 | Comments 0

1) The Firehawk FX was built for us classic rockers!

Unlike any other IOS / Android / Mobile only device out there, this is a fully functional stand-alone unit further enhanced by an app.  But, if you're not into the apps, that's okay.  This still will rock your world as a standalone tone machine!

Real Amp Controls
2) Line 6 kept it real, by adding real amp controls!

With  Volume, Drive, Bass, Middle, Treble, FX, and Reverb controls at your fingertips, what more can you ask for?

3) It's Gig Ready, but this is no ordinary floor controller!

This works equally well on a table top for those that don't like floor units and can easily be carried to the gig.  Whether it's on the table or on the floor, it will get the job done. You can have your cake and eat it too!  And who the hell doesn't like cake?

FX : Easy ON, Easy OFF
4) Love stompboxes? Well, stomp away!

With the Firehawk FX, you can turn effects on and off as you wish just like a stompbox.  Want compression on, or off?  Want Delay on, or off?  Can't make up your mind?  No problem. Just like a floor board of effects – just hit the on/off button that corresponds to the effect in the signal chain. As functional as the worst sloppy ass pedalboard of mixed effects, just a bit more tidy. And, no noisy patch cables to troubleshoot!  (that's the cherry on top of the cake that you were eating earlier)

Connect it any way you want!
5) Line 6 gave guitar players everything INCLUDING the kitchen sink.

Want to plug into the front of an amp?  Great, you can do that.  How about direct into a DAW?  Yup – hit a button, and it's voiced for that!  Mono?  Yes.  Stereo?  Yes.  Quarter inch?  Yes.  XLR?  Yup, that too.  STEREO EFFECTS LOOP to patch in your favorite effects?  Yes.  Getting the point folks?  Before you ask any more questions ... the answer is YES!

Every Amp, Every Effect at your fingertips!
6)  You get every amp, and every effect you can possibly want with a few clicks of an app on your favorite mobile device or laptop. 

The Roadie Rag - An EZer way to clean your instruments! 
IOS / Android geeks ... pay attention here. Want some options?  The Firehawk FX gives you options.  Diezel?  ENGL?  Soldano?  Marshall?  Plexi?  JCM? Vox?  Blackface?  Tweed?  Deluxe?  Jazz Chorus?  Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.   A full arsenal of gear at your fingertips!

Built to Last!
7) Line 6 has been doing nothing but this since Day 1.

If you want the best of the best amp models, effects, and more – Line 6 will get you there.  Period, nuff said.  In life, there are followers and leaders, and in this case, Line 6 is an undisputed leader. But they haven't rested on their laurels.  Now owned by Yamaha – they are bigger and badder than ever before.  Whether you want to use this as a stand-alone unit, or integrate it with your effects, your Variax, outboard expression pedals, and tweak to your hearts content – the Firehawk FX delivers!

8 ) Built to Last. The Firehawk is built like a Tomahawk missile.

All metal construction, neatly and evenly spaced even for the biggest, baddest rockers out there.  It's meant to rock, night after night.

9) It's simple to use! 

Turn it on, pick a preset and rock.  It's not overly complex.  Even the app – if you know what an icon is, you can use this app.  Simply touch with your pointer finger!  No scrolling, no deep editing menus, just a simple touch of the screen.  Less time scrolling, more time rocking!

10) The most important thing ... it sounds amazing!

But, don't' take my word for it: Do be sure to check out Sweetwater's demo of it.  Mitch Gallagher does an amazing job, and will tell you everything you've ever wanted to know about this unit, in exactly 15 minutes.  A must see if you're considering the Firehawk FX! Watch below!

If that's not enough for you, here are some other great links worth checking out!

Firehawk Tone Tour  w/ Paul Hindmarsh

Using Firehawk FX As A Recording Interface
! No longer available

Connectivity – Firehawk FX
! No longer available

Mobile Control – Firehawk FX
! No longer available


I own lots of gear  - including  lots of Line-6

Ive had a Firehawk FX since June 2015

Compare HD500X vs Firehawk

I have  current  Firehawk FX Firmware  1.10  - which added:
New Live Edit mode—adjust nearly all amp, cab, and effects parameters without a mobile device (or even taking your hands off the guitar)
New one-button looper (20 seconds)
New channel volume from stepped encoder
Improved Bluetooth performance
Removed artifacts when switching patches; we're still working on making it faster
Volume pedal now behaves properly when switching patches

1st thing I did was install the ASIO Driver on one of Windows 7 machines, install the Line-6 updater 1.03 app, launched and updated the Firehawk FX  to Firmware 1.10.

Ive been using my Audio Technica ATH-M50X headphones, and JTV-69 Guitar, and Installed the Firehawk Remote IOS app on my iPhone 6 Plus  - the patch change delay is not bad -  much faster patch to patch changes compared to Roland GR-55) and zero audio dropouts when changing patches while streaming music backing tracks over bluetooth into the Firehawk.
(The FireHawk's Audio over Bluetooth wireless transfer exhibits the lowest latency I have ever experienced for a Bluetooth Connection!)

The LCD Display is very crisp and legible from all off axis viewing angles, and I really like that there is a dedicated Reverb knob  and FX Tweak knob, without need to dive into menus if working without the Firehawk Remote Editor running an iPhone/iPad. Many factory Preset Tones are quite usable for a gig.

When no Tablet or iPhone  / iPad is available, the latest FireHawk FX firmware 1.10 added a "Live Edit" mode  - which allows adjusting all FX parameters in stand alone mode using the Expression pedal / data wheel.
Firehawk FX Factory presets PDF FX Factory Presets - English ( Rev A ).pdf

Its very lean on I/O compared to HD500/HD500X, (Missing the L6 Link, 3.5mm TRS Aux Input, No Mic Input)  - but having access to the nice Firehawk Remote Editor on my iPhone or ipad makes for a fast  / easy setup  / teardown and minimal cables.

Re patch change time,  It changes patches faster than the GR-55, but see more details below    - one thing to say its a joy the Firehawk FX does NOT mute the backing audio tracks on every Patch change  if you are streaming them via Bluetooth or USB from your iphone /ipad
( many examples of competing gear employs a "mute circuit" on the final output that mutes All audio for 150-200 milliseconds on every patch change while the DSP loads new patch data, and that can ruin a "one man band" live gig/

For creating tones and learning songs, I already I prefer Firehawk  over my HD500. Firehawk is whisper quiet, excellent dynamic range  - no Hum, even when I used the Normal Mag Single coil PUs on my JTV-69, and I'm in a rather noisy EMF environment in an industrial building.
The Tone Matching tool actually works rather well, I was surprised that when I played arcane tunes in my iTunes library, the Line-6 Firehawk Tone match tool would suggest 6 or 8 patches from the cloud, and in seconds I was in the ball park for playing along with the tune.                 

On my Firehawk FX - some patches do take a bit longer (but never more than 250milliseconds) and occasionally I hear a momentary burst jump in volume, which is tolerable for some, and not for others

But know this about Line-6 Firehawk FX

* No compatibility with Line-6 Monkey

* Its clear the Firehawk is just a AMPLIFI FX100 with a bit more switches and Variax VDI input.

* No compatibility with Variax Workbench HD

* No MIDI control over USB

* No PC /Mac Editor

* USB Audio is USB Class Compliant   I have much easier time using Firehawk FX as Audio interface on my iPad+CCK  -  but very different experience with the Windows ASIO Driver that is fixed at 48kHz  - and I had to give up due to noise and distortion from the ASIO Driver and not use Firehawk FX with Reaper or Sony Vegas or Protools. Might improve if I try ASIO4ALL.

* If changing preset to preset , if both presets include delay, but the new preset has a much shorter delay time, there is a noticeable high volume "Chirp" during patch changes that occur only if you are playing guitar during the patch change.

My typical worst case Firehawk FX Patch change noise occurs under these conditions

1 ) Select the factory preset "03C Move Like Jagger"

2) Strum a chord and let ring, and while the chord is still ringing, select factory preset "03D Tighten Up"

3) I always get a very loud high volume burst of chip noise duration 80 milliseconds   = maybe I can pretend I'm Steve Stevens doing Rebel Yell laser gun sound FX blasts on patch changes.

Same  very loud burst of noise during patch change also occurs frequently on other presets too

like changing from "04C Day Tripper" to "04D 4 What Its Worth"

Line 6 says they will have another firmware update to address the chirp on patch change  - but not expecting it until December 2015.

My work around for bird chirps on patch change is  just be sure to stop playing guitar and mute all strings before changing presets at the gig


Well, I took the plunge on a Firehawk this weekend, and I have to say it has blown me away so far. Granted, I play 99.5% of the time at home, so some of the "quirks" Elantric mentioned above don't bother me...yet ;)

I had an HD500 a couple of years back, but just did not care for the depth of tweaking options. So far, with the Firehawk, I have dialed in some nice tones within minutes, and even some of the presets are usable without much fiddling. Plus, it sounds fantastic - even through the crappy headphones I grabbed. Going to pick up a powered PA speaker and see how it sounds, but I am really digging it so far.

Now, based on Elantric's comments, the question is should I have just gotten the FX100 or (gasp!) an Amplifi 75/150 instead? Maybe one of those would have been enough, except that it's nice to be able to stack and arrange effects in any order I choose, plus the additional switches and HD amps...hmmm...


Read the post above yours for my list of FireHawk FX complaints.

Line 6 indicates they will provide an update to resolve the chirps at patch change , but they are sluggish to respond and distracted by the Helix

My typical worst case Firehawk FX Patch change noise occurs under these conditions

1 ) Select the factory preset "03C Move Like Jagger"

2) Strum a chord and let ring, and while the chord is still ringing, select factory preset "03D Tighten Up"

3) I always get a very loud high volume burst of noise duration 80 milliseconds  - totally unacceptable for professional gear.

Same  very loud burst of noise during patch change also occurs frequently on other presets too

like changing from "04C Day Tripper" to "04D 4 What Its Worth"


6 years ago Line-6 and Daddario had iPhone remote control for Variax and Vetta 

Demo of the new MIDI Mobilizer and Planet Waves Rig Remote Application featured at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference 2009


Apple has announced an iOS 9 release date of September 16, 2015. At this time, the following Line 6 apps are not compatible with iOS 9 and therefore will not work:

·   AMPLIFi Remote
·   Firehawk Remote
·   Stagescape Remote

We highly recommend that users of these products do not upgrade their mobile device to iOS 9. We are working on software updates to provide iOS9 compatibility and intend to release them soon. Please check back at for the latest information on availability.




Firehawk FX Version 1.20.00
Released 9/29/15

Works with:
Firehawk FX   
We strongly recommend updating your firmware with the Line 6 Updater on Mac or PC.

This firmware update provides much faster patch switching and fixes audible artifacts when switching between specific patches.

Relief for the patch change noise may be here at last- I'll try tonight


I did the update to FW 1.20

Good news is for the first time ever I finally have a working ASIO Driver after the firmware 1.20 update,  I can finally set Firehawk to 16bits or 24bits @ 44.1khz or 48kHz  - this never worked on my windows machine with prior firmware

Despite asking weeks ago if any other Firehak FX owners have this working.

With Firehawk FX Firmware 1.20 the patch change time is much lower  -but still  not as fast as the  HD500X

And  I  still get a "bang" on specific patch to patch transitions.

try yourself by following these steps

1 ) Select factory patch#  09A Another Brick ,

2 ) Strum a chord and  let it ring out, 

3 ) then hear the loud "Bang" as you select  factory patch#  09B Own A Lonely Hrt


1 ) Select  Patch# 13A Streets no Name

2 ) Strum a chord and  let it ring out, 

3 ) Then hear the loud "Bang" as you select  factory patch# 13B Hysteria Octave

And now I can report with FW 1.20 I am experiencing the famous "A/D" Lights of death - with a  Locked up silent Firehawk FX with no sound and only a steady "stuck" glowing Preset  A  &  Preset D

First time Ive seen this well known "bug" on my hardware

Not happy to have wasted 4 months for a solution - and still find remaining bugs which means this Firehawk FX is not reliable enough to use at gigs in my trio.