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iamqman 03/17/2011

Line 6 POD XT Live : iamqman's user review

"Good for the Floor!"
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When I first tried this unit I was not happy with it at all. I was playing a Vox Ac30 and wanted to get some good amp simulations and stomp boxes with effects in an all in one unit that could run into my clean amp. So let me try and dial up some Slash tones or some Zeppelin or even maybe some VH. Not only was this thing not capable of even coming close but it sounded so bad that I almost gave up on it. So I went out and bought a JCM2000 basically getting me the start to that Marshall tone from the bands I mentioned above and just stuck with using the unit as an effects processor for modulation and delays. That is where this thing lives. They claim to have good amps sims and stomp boxes but both of these features lack tremendously. Now if your accustomed to tube distortion then this is a miss for that feature, but if your looking to have some cool delays and flangers then this is a perfect setup for home or live situation.

Another thing that I would prefer in this unit is real stomp boxes buttons. I don't know what they are called but the shiny clickers that are featured on most stomp boxes. The pads they use on this unit to me can break or get sticker if you spill beer on it. I don't feel that this construction will be built to hold up to the road as much as regular Boss pedals go.

Another cool feature is that you can run a line out to a recording booth. I did not test this since I don't personal record at home. I heard that Lincoln Brewster uses this unit for his live tone which is surprising. He actually uses this to achieve his amp and cab simulation going out to the PA mix. Either way most tube guys would never do this, but it is available if desired.

UTILIZATION

Extremely easy to use if you have ever used a POD operation before. If you are new to the POD world then it may take you a couple of minutes. But everything goes in sequence as if it were a real amp, cab, compression, stomp box, modulation, delay, and then wah. So it goes in series order as if it were real units. So I would recommend taking the approach of normal amp and cab and then fill in the effects accordingly.

Like all Line 6 products the manual if very helpful. They explaining set up preparation and operational understanding. They guide you through the set up for your individual rig and give suggestions for other ways of hook up. They have a good informative manual that is very helpful.

SOUND QUALITY

For me it lacks in the stomp box feature and the amp sims. Though I don't expect an amp sim to sound anything like the original. So that point is probably moot. What they do very well in my opinion is the delays. I love the delay sounds and various types and styles of delays available. For me they sound good and give my tone the color or effect that is needed.

I used this with a Vox Ac30, Marshall JMP, and a Marshall JCM2000 going into a vintage Marshall 4x12 with Blackback speakers rated at 25 watts. In each amp the unit sounded fantatsic. Especially the Marshall's. Since I was using the natural OD from the Marshall, the effects from the POD were very nice in different applications. I was using a Strat, Tele, and a Les Paul in each situation. I'm a Marshall tone kind of guy so I spent most of my time playing around with those amps using the delays, flangers, and phase of the POD to achieve my rock tones. I didn't like the chorus affect as much as the others but I don't use that much chorus anyway so it didn't matter to me much.

OVERALL OPINION

The thing that I would change would be the the foot clickers. I would like them to beef up that so it would be more road worthy. The thing I really enjoyed was how sweet the tones I could get combo-ed with a Marshall in the the effects loop. Saving patches for certain songs was a breeze. Having my set list there with one click of a button saved through the midi operation was so easy. This unit can be found for around $250+ or - so you won't break the bank to much. Plus Line 6 Pod units seem to keep a lot of their value so if you didn't like it you could probably let go of it with out a huge hit or loss.

I would recommend this to any gear head who wants easy effect operation to go with his current rig. It is not high end so if you wanted more tweakability then I would step up to the POD HD series or POD Pro.