An internal debate I’ve been having recently revolves around the constant options guitar players have with effects, analog or digital? To explain further, digital processor/modeler or traditional pedal board?
I’ve used my trusty traditional pedal board for years. It’s been a constant revolving door of Dunlop , BOSS, Electro Harmonix, DOD, Digitech (almost every kind of guitar pedal) wiring configurations and power supplies. With all the knobs and dials a guitar tone freak could hope for. The upsides have always been similar. Great tone and dependability (and the flexibility wasn’t bad either). The downside has become a bit more apparent recently. The more pedals I add to my pedal board also means more space required, and I’m currently the proud owner of 2 decommissioned pedal boards. The current two-tier pedal board I’m using is one of the pieces of gear I’m most proud of. Until it comes time to remove it from the rehearsal studio into the real world of gigging on tiny stages made for a drummer and maybe three other performers. My pedal board has become the fifth wheel in this relationship. Aside from the massive amounts of room required for it now, the weight of the pedal board and case is closely approaching that of my Mesa Boogie 4×12 cabinet.
*I know at this point you may be thinking I should just remove pedals and my problem is solved. You will meet this with as much resistance as taking a baby panda from her mother. It just doesn’t happen with a guitar tone obsessed player such as myself.
To help with the issues mentioned above, I recently purchased a Line 6 POD XT Live Guitar Multi Effects Pedalboard. The reviews I’ve read rant about the ease of use, and the above average sound quality. In my experiences, Line 6 gear has always been a great performer and continues to be. I sat down over two different nights and set all of my presets to the standard configurations I am used to. The next rehearsal was the testing ground for the new unit. The sound was right on par with my expectations. With some tweaking, I was able to achieve a lot of the sounds from my old pedal board with ease.
With all sound and testing aside, I felt incomplete. My over three feet by two feet pedal board of tangled wires and endless knobs was no longer there to provide the confidence boost it always had. But to the unknowing listener, nothing had changed in my guitar tone. It was almost awkward to only press one button and call a preset that normally took me three taps on pedals in a fancy tap dancer move. It wasn’t the usual eye sore on the floor everyone noticed, and it didn’t have any of the hum the old pedal board did. This new Line 6 unit had to be the obvious winner right?
Yet I never felt right. Almost like I was cheating.
Has anyone else dealt with this? Do the withdraws ever end?!