Price paid: £ 65
Purchased from: Turnkey (R.I.P.!)
Sound — 8
The reason I love Line 6 is the tone. Their amp models, to me, are second to none! Especially the Rectifier models. I play mostly metal and rock and the Killswitch Engage/Foo Fighters sounds you can get from this thing are awesome! The effects are great and I like the fact that you can blend them, bypass, change, edit, etc. And mix exactly what you like to get some truly unique tones. Live, I'd used this through a 120W head and 4x12 250W cab, and it certainly sounded powerful! It was a little tinny, and I've now got my Spider HD75 head, which is totally awesome! The Pocket POD is now my practise and recording equipment for home and it sounds great through my 60W amp, with plenty of beef, tone and power. It's not noisy either - I don't know if there's a built in noice gate? My HD75 is the same - stop playing and there's no hiss! Awesome! Overall though, the sound is first class!
Overall Impression — 8
I'd not really read much about this before getting it and I took a bit of a risk by buying it only on the shop assistant's recommendation. But I knew of Line 6's sounds and had demoed a couple of their amps before, so I knew I'd get something decent. It was only when I checked the box in the store that I realised you got preset patches from the likes of Killswitch Engage, As I Lay Dying, POD (aptly!) and a host of emo, pop and rock bands I've not heard of! The KsE patches swung it for me and I've used theirs as a basis for editing my own patches. Some of the tones and models are a little suspect (like the 'brit' amp, which I assume is supposed to model a Marshall? ), but on the whole they're nearly all useable and you can edit every one and create your own, so there's almost nothing you can't do with it! I'd say there's nothing really to complain about and for the money, I'm suitably impressed! Well done Line 6! Like I said, I love their products and I'd happily stick with these guys for life (unless I can afford a real Rectifier!). The days of solid-state tinnyness are gone for us amateur and poor musicians! This piece of kit should be suitable for any style of music, and certainly for the metal and rock that I play it is superb! Get yourself a power supply or a set of rechargeable AAA batteries and you can't go wrong!
Reliability & Durability — 5
The casing seems a little flimsy and it is only made of plastic, but at the end of the day, any enthusiastic and proud musician takes care of his gear. It could have done with a small padded gig bag to protect it, but I've found something suitable to carry it about in. I've used it Live for some time and, prior to me getting my HD75, it actually cut out in the penultimate song of the set! I couldn't get the sound back and it kept making funny noises when plugged into the amp... I never found out what caused it, but suspect I may have had a lead problem too. Anyway, it's now a home-use-only piece of kit and it's been fine for everything I need it for (I've even used it for some vocal effect on a recording! ). Generally I'd say it is a good piece of Live kit, but I think it's geared more towards home and recording use. Personally I'd say at least take one stomp-box with you as a backup. Also it eats batteries, so make sure you run it on a power supply! Shame one isn't included, but I believe you can get a pack for it with headphones, power supply, etc (see the Thomann website).
Ease of Use — 7
Basically, this little 'kidney bean' is a plug in and play beastie. I haven't used the belt clip to attach it to my belt... But it's quite handy to clip it to the handle on the top of your amp, to stop it sliding off! Line 6 selection and editing processes scared me a bit, before I got to grips with this, but for the size (and the money! ) it's fairly easy to get to grips with. I quite like Line 6's 'smart control' knobs (I have a Spider HD75 head as well) and setting up your own patches and editing is pretty straightforward, once you've had a bit of a fiddle about. I've only tried to edit/add patches via the USB connection once and I must admit, I didn't have much success. But to be honest, it has more than enough patches on it for me anyway, and I only tend to use the ones I've created myself... !