POD HD300 Review

manufacturer: Line 6 date: 01/11/2013 category: Guitar Effects
Line 6: POD HD300
Getting a good sound out of this unit is pretty hard work (IMO), the factory preset's aren't the best.
 Sound: 7.5
 Overall Impression: 7.2
 Reliability & Durability: 7.8
 Ease of Use: 6.8
 Overall rating:
 6.2 
 Reviewer rating:
 7.4 
 Users rating:
 4.9 
 Votes:
 54 
reviews (6) pictures (3) 21 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 6.8
POD HD300 Reviewed by: bassman434, on july 07, 2011
3 of 8 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 250

Purchased from: DV 24/7

Ease of Use: Getting a good sound out of this unit is pretty hard work (IMO), the factory preset's aren't the best (bar a few of the really crazy sounding ones). Editing the patches is simple using the POD HD300 Edit software, otherwise editing patches on the unit itself can be a pain (but some will get used to it I think). // 6

Sound: I'm plugging my HD300 straight into my laptop using a Jackson DK2M and using Senheisser HD202's (not the greatest pair of headphones I know. On the distorted sounds, this thing does get noisy, but using the noise gate helps clear that up). Once properly tweaked, some of the sounds this unit produces are brilliant (I'm especially pleased with the clean tones). And the heavier models for metals sound very good - lead tones again sound pretty good once tweaked properly. Playing metal, I can get a good tone for Metallica songs to Bullet For My Valentine to Iron Maiden (the Treadplate model is pretty heavy sounding) Onto effects, the actual effects are very articulate and natural sounding, it as a range from simple Chorus's to Pitch Changers and even to a Smart Harmoniser. However, the unit itself has set certain effects in each of the 3 banks - i.e. Delays are only in FX3 and cannot be changed, OD is in FX1 and cannot be moved around nor can you run two of the pedals at the same - imo this is a huge let down - i.e. you can't even run an EQ pedal and OD at the same time, because there in the same bank. Also the wah's are pretty weak and to my ears sound the same. // 6

Reliability & Durability: Gotta say this thing is built like a tank, I've dropped it a couple of times and its damaged my flooring not the unit (units more important). If I were to gig I probably would without a backup. // 9

Overall Impression: Playing majority metal and its various subgenre's. The POD does Excel with some models but some a big let down (the Engl and Marshall JCM model's) - they just sound really weak. Previously I played through POD Farm, and honestly its not the biggest step up in the world (the leads just sound more articulate). I regret not playing with it enough in the store. If stolen, I wouldn't buy it again, I'd just invest in the expansion packs for POD Farm, buy a better pair of headphones/monitors and a nice Wah pedal) and I reckon it'll sound better than the POD HD300. Overall, it's an okay unit not the greatest, and if anyone were looking into buying anything from the POD HD series, go for the 500 - the use of any effect any bank, and graphic EQ and POD farm capability are little features which will satisfy any guitar play. // 6

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overall: 8.8
POD HD300 Reviewed by: bimariyanto, on august 24, 2011
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 299

Purchased from: Personal Dealer

Ease of Use: Okay, first of all, I think this multi effect unit is not really complicated in design so I can easily access the menu for tweaking setting to the amp models, effect models, expression pedal modes and the other control, it comes with a usb port so this device can be edited more advanced with the software, and I think I don't need any manuals, because I can search for a video tutorial in the internet, really easy, but not even more. // 8

Sound: I play it through my Marshall MG30DFX, very standard amp, and with my Ibanez ART-120 fitted with EMG 81-85 pickups. Really amazing, it has very versatile range of amps selections, from the clean amps to the metal amps, and I try every models and the sound was very good, the clean amps is mild and brings warm color to my clean tone and the high gain distortion is very great, no noise at all. The effects is very flexible, it has very. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Surely I've not worried about bringing it to anywhere, to the gigs, rehearsal and jamming. Its built like a armour van, no doubt to drop it accidentally (luckily I'm not dropped it yet) and I think I need a backup pedals if I can't find any power source (it can't run with a battery). // 10

Overall Impression: I mostly play pop, rock, and metal, and my favourite setting is sparkling clean with a touch of octo verb, and american high gain amp sound, and this unit suits me well, I've been using it for 5 months and had no problems with the sound quality, I never asked other people for this unit, because this item was rare in my country, I would not buy it again, if I had more deal, I would get the HD500. // 8

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overall: 8.5
POD HD300 Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 06, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 151.99

Purchased from: Max-it Pawn

Ease of Use: This is more a review for people on the fence about upgrading to the HD Series from previous pods. I'm not gonna list everything they featured, others have done that already. The following is my impression of the HD Line versus previous pod lines. It's pretty easy to get a good sound out of it. I dialed in two metal tones in 15 minutes that I am still using to this day. I do feel like I wasted a lot of time chasing tones with my previous pods instead of actually playing. But some of that time did come in handy for learning how Line 6 generally sets up their user interfaces I guess. It is a bit different on the HD's but not hard to figure out if you've used their multi's before. I've used a lot of multi's (not just Line 6's either) and I find it easy to work with anyway. Firmware version is 2.01 and the manual should be able to help you out if you get stuck. // 9

Sound: This is what I really liked about the HD Series - I think the sounds are quite a bit better, they didn't just repackage the same sounds again like the did with the X3 Line. I play through an LTD EC200QM and a Washburn Dime36 G16. I really like the Mesa and Engl models. The depth to the sound of the HD Series sounds much more full and authentic to me than previous pods. I think it feels better to play than the previous pods too. I don't play with the clean or lower gain stuff too much really, but when I do I definitely appreciate how much those sounds have evolved as well. The effects are also from their new generation of stomp models on the M13 and those also sound better to me than they have on the past pods. Especially things like Whammy and pitch based effects like harmonizers. Remember the "Bender"? Horrible excuse for a Whammy! They made good on those ones this time. I don't use much for effects typically as I'm a fairly straight forward player but their old Whammy model always bummed me out. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I don't really gig right now as I am currently just a one man band recording in an apartment, so my dependence is on modeling tech in this sort of setting. It doesn't leave the studio room too much except for the occasional jam session with a buddy or two but it seems to be built pretty solid. I am still a bit skeptical of giving Line 6 high marks for reliability after an experience with my X3 Live a few years ago, but they seem to have learned. The problem was the USB direct recording would drop out all the time but I don't have that issue with this pedal. I still rely on my M-Audio fast track pro for day to day use but I had to at least check it out. USB seems solid this generation. // 7

Overall Impression: I love my metal new and old and honestly with the original firmware I was skeptical if I would keep this pedal. Firmware version 2.01 has added more amps and made some tweaks the existing models. I definitely noticed a difference on the Mesa model right away and it was definitely for the better. The firmware update entirely changed my opinion of the pedal. For what I do this is really all I need, I don't need the extra options the higher models have and its even without those its a big step above my previous pods. I'm quite happy with it.

// 9

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overall: 9
POD HD300 Reviewed by: darkmist255, on january 11, 2013
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 350

Purchased from: Long & McQuades

Ease of Use: This is where the difference between a good impression and a bad impression happens. It takes time and TWEAKING to get a good sound, but once you finally get a good tone it'll grow on you. For the first hour or so I found that I just couldn't get a good tone out of it, but I eventually started picking out what I liked and didn't like and I ended up getting a better tone than I ever thought I could from my guitar. The key with the Pod is EDIT YOUR TONE ON THE COMPUTER. The knobs on the POD itself just won't get you as much detail as you get on your computer screen. The patch editing software is literally plug and play, so there's no added difficulty there. The manual is straightforward but not really necessary for anything. I'm using firmware v2.01 (latest). // 8

Sound: I'm using it with a Jackson JS32RT and (when not plugging right into my computer) I'm running it out of a Peavey Stereo Chorus 212 (Make sure it's set to 'live' if you run it through an amp). The effects all sound great, but you'll need to do some tweaking to get anything excellent. It doesn't add any noise, the noise reduction and gate are actually fairly effective, even at ridiculously high gain there's nothing annoying. I love the clean tones, the clean presets are already gig-worthy out of the box. You can get any range of tones from a rich deep clean through more of a single coil sounding jazz/funk (this is with humbuckers mind you). I'm a big metal player, so John Petrucci's tone was my goal when I got this. I had no hopes of actually getting his exact tone, but I got surprisingly close results. This sounds great in studio mode right into my laptop, or in live mode into my amp. // 9

Reliability & Durability: The thing is built like a tank. I don't think I will ever be worried about its safety. Solid Metal throughout, the expression pedal is held on well, feels very secure. Connections all seem to be good quality, I wouldn't worry about any of them. You would have to do something pretty reckless to do serious damage to it. I don't think I would even consider bringing a backup if I was touring. The metal carrying bar feels very solid and I'm comfortable leaving it anywhere without worry that something will fall on it or bump into it. // 10

Overall Impression: This is perfect for the budget metal player (like me), but I would suggest it to anyone from any genre looking to be more versatile. I've been playing guitar for almost 6 years now and I wish I had this earlier. If you're a musician on a budget this is what you need, it does everything well enough that you would never be able to get the same versatility for under 1000$. I would definitely buy it again. Word of warning, when they say that firmware updates will take half an hour, they aren't exaggerating. Do it right away before you get into playing. This is an asset both in the studio and live. // 9

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overall: 8.5
POD HD300 Reviewed by: Requiem1991, on august 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 200

Purchased from: Some dude of the internet

Ease of Use: Sorry for my strange English I'm Dutch so I don't know all the grammar. The Line 6 Pod HD Series are the new benchmark in Multi-Effect units from Line 6, they have 10 times more Amp Juice than the previous versions (XT, X3, Pod 2.0) and they have very cool effects coming from the M9 and M13. I own the XT, X3 and even the first Pods so I do have a little bit of comparison material! I choose to buy the 300 series and not the 500 why? I will tell you at the end of the review! First of all I'd like to mention that there is some kind of a steep learning curve on this Multi-Effect. You can dial in a pretty cool tone but to get an "Amazing" tone you have to spend quite some time with the unit itself. Reading the manual (I do dislike reading them) is a big plus because it tells you where everything is and how to combine everything. You can edit patches on the HD 300 through USB (Recommended!) or through the small screen on the Pod itself. Making and editing patches through the USB Utility is way less time consuming and you have a nice overall view of what is active and what is not. You can certainly make patches through the little screen but it requires you browsing with the 4 directional arrow button and the preset knob. If you want to start editing presets on the unit itself you press the PRESETS Button and from there on out you can edit it to your liking. Save it and your done! Line 6 does support the HD300 series, even tough it has the 400, 500, Pro and Bean series it still gets all the goodies that the other units get. With the latest firmware 2.0? You get Seven new HD Amp's, Bass Amp's, Vocal thingies and Cab Bypass. So for the little learning curve of this unit I will give this a 7/10. // 7

Sound: Alright the most important part of the review! The first very important thing I must say is that the Pod HD 300 does not have Dual Amping, So you CAN'T run 2 amps at the same time, the 500 and Bean/Pro can do this. 400? I'm not sure. I play this unit on multiple ways, I use it for rehearsals with my band (Melodic Technical Death Metal) through a Hughes & Kettner Attax 100 with matching cabinet, and my Dean Vendetta 4.0 with EMG 81, 85 where I only use the distortions of the pedal and not the Pre-Amp's. As a distortion Unit it sounds pretty darn good! I don't use pre-amps here because there is already an Amp working, so adding a pre-amp is like using 2 amps (in my opinion) using the Pre-Amps through this amp just makes it a little bit of muddy and you lose allot of definition in your tone and working with the distortion pedals just sound a little bit better on this setup! I use the Heavy Distortion and the Line 6 Distortion for getting my distortion sound just about right. Using the noise/gate to cut it off a little you can get a very cool sound ranging from Thrash Metal to Death Metal, Metal Core or that very nasty low Djent sound. It can get a little noisy from this setup but you can negate that with the Noise/Gate! I Also use this unit live through the XLR Outputs into a DI, I can't ship my amp everything so I had to get a unit that can perform Live. The Pod HD 300 delivers on this aspect in any way possible, it's mind-blowing to hear the sounds that this thing can produce that I'm considering selling my amp and just continue only using this unit. For live purposes with my band I use the Dean Vendetta 4.0 (EMG 81, 85) and a Schecter C7FR with Seymour Duncan Blackouts. I use the Treadplate and Angelball-100 Amp models with the different cabinets, the 4x12 XXL, 4x12 Tread and the 4x12 Uber Cabinets. Always using the 57 on axis Mic just because that's my normal setup at home. The tone is not harsh, not fuzzy, not even artificial sounding. It has decent Low End for palm muted chugachuga parts and has enough Highs to get those awesome shred solo sounds. When I ask people after the show what they think about my sound they can't really tell if it was a Amp or a Digital Unit, it comes SO close to sounding like the real deal (And if it's not I don't care! It sounds awesome!) that regular people (your standard gig crowd) can't hear the difference and that is in my opinion a very good thing! Line 6 Delivers very well on this aspect and really makes the HD series outstanding. And then I use this unit for Recording at home! But I use the POD HD300 only as a PRE-AMP! I use external Impulses (Cartharsis and Kalthallen) because they just fit better in my overall mix and they just have a "Little" more definition than the Stock cabinets and impulses. Not to say that they sound bad, it's just you have WAY more options when using external impulses so you can blend and mix allot more! As for clean sounds, it delivers very well. The unit has nice Warm mid tones and you can really get that twangy sound when you combine it with a good strat. Combining the Blackface with a Spring reverb or even a little overscream can give you instant blues sounds, or just go crazy and play some nice funk with it. You can go all ways with this unit without sounding to artificial. BUT! Clean sounds are very important and I personally prefer the tone out of a Fender Twin Reverb over this unit! I have very mixed feelings about the effects on this unit, it has allot of effects! But there is no way to assign your FX Chain! And that's my only downside to this unit, you can't really manage your FX. You have 3 FX Blocks with 1 Reverb block. Block 1 has the Overdrive's and Modulators (Q Mod, Filters, Synth Mods). Block 2 has the Chorus/Tremolo effects and Block 3 has Delay's and Echo's. There is no way to put your Delay's before your reverb in the Pre-Section or you have to give up your 1st block that contains a Spring Reverb. The only thing you can do with the effects is put the m in the Pre- or the Post-Amp section of your Amplifier. The effects do sound really good! I'd rather use my Pod HD 300 for single stomp box mode than using my over populated Pedal board. There are also some effects on this unit that I will NEVER use I think they are not needed and are just for filling up the unit? So I would give this a 9/10 why? It sounds fantastic without sounding to artificial, you can do allot of different things with this unit from Live, studio, rehearsals, jamming and delivering your tone to the spot. // 9

Reliability & Durability: Well absolutely yes! This unit is build like a tank! I use this unit almost every day with or without my shoes on and it does not get scratched or dented. For live use always be careful with Drinks! Even though this unit is build like a tank liquids will kill it so be careful! Will I use it on a gig without backup? Yes this unit has already proven that it is a very sturdy reliable unit and won't easily break down. You have to do very unpleasant things to it if you want it to break down! I do carry my POD HD300 in a very sturdy case, the Diago pedalboard just to be safe. Just because this thing is built like a tank and never ever broke down on me I'm giving this a 10/10. // 10

Overall Impression: I play everything from Death Metal to Jazz and Funk and this unit can do it all. Since I've bought it a couple of months ago I can't stop playing through this unit. It sounds fantastic and can be used on more than one way. If I had more money would I buy the 500? Well if I want full control over my FX Chain and Dual Amps YES! But I don't need them so I see no point in buying it. Will I Buy this unit again if it broke down? Yes without a doubt. I love the plain versatility of this unit with enough tweaking you can get every sound you want and it will deliver everywhere. I did compare it to other products, I compared it with the Pod HD Bean and the Dual Amping is pretty cool and it has the FX Chain settings but it does not have build in pedals (or you have to buy the FBV Board) and that's why I've bought the HD300 for the pedals and live use! // 8

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overall: 2.5
POD HD300 Reviewed by: psil0777, on september 06, 2012
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 287

Purchased from: Local Dealer

Ease of Use: First I was satisfied with this product though sounds were bit complicated to do. You can't plug this with USB (for PC and POD editor) and guitar cable to amp same time, USB-connection causes extra noise if you try to plug both cable and USB. When I bought this and used this in studio I was satisfied, though editing sounds for real amp was bit frustrating but after few months below mentioned problems started: Factory presets didn't work=toe switch bug you can't rest this to factory defaults as toe switch don't work. More info here. One pedal put rec on during live show. Sounds were bit cold (tested with JCM800 stack, JCM2000 stack, Peavey stack and valvestate vs 100R combo). Too much probs with updates, bias settings, lots of useless preset sounds and pre-am probs. Eventually I sold this and bough Boss unit which works well, has no bugs or "cuts" (POD HD300 had this cut /slight delay prob when switching from bank 1 to bank 2 and so on) when changing from soundbank 1 to bank 2. // 3

Sound: Tested with JCM800 stack, JCM2000 stack, Peavey stack and valvestate vs 100R combo. Guitars used: Ibanez Universe UV7BLK, Ibanez Universe UV777 and Ibanez RGD2127Z-ISH. Too much unwanted noise while playing live (distortion sounds) except clean sounds worked. // 3

Reliability & Durability: I don't recommend this for playing live unreliable if you play about 2-3 gigs/week and this HD300 ruins gig with pedal bug. For studio no prob good sounds through monitors excluding distorted sounds. // 1

Overall Impression: Didn't work with heavy metal, distortion sounds were too messy and had too much unwanted noise. With clean sounds very good. I have 27 years of experience playing live and working in studio. Overall impression: probably good unit for studio but for playing 50-100 gigs/year I wont recommend this unit as problems started after 3 gigs, and I handle my instruments with care with all flights guitars and this unit was "fragile, handle with care" well packed and so on. Decided to use Boss GT10 for playing live no problems its more reliable for playing live than POD HD300. I still use line KB37 for studio work. I think line 6 products are for studio work only. Sorry for bad English I'm from Finland. // 3

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