Price paid: $ 80
Purchased from: EBAY
Sound — 9
I use this with an Epiphone SG G310 and a Line 6 Spider III 15 watt amp and the sound is great for me. I bought the Line 6 spider 3 amp because I wanted tones but finished the capacity of that and wanted more so I got this POD, so I basically never use the amp tones at all because I plug in the Pocket POD and get all the preset and dialed in tones without having to tweek around the amp everytime so that makes chanign tones easy and a breeze! The effects I haven't used on the silver knobs, but the ones when you are editing on the software make a HUGE difference and you can get some pretty cool effects on the pocketpod editor program (vyzex). I can get the sounds I want easily from the custometones.com website which is compatible with the unit. I can search by song name and artist and I was able to get great tones for my favorite bands like Metallica, Dragonforce, Slayer, Green Day, and Blink-182. All the tone qualities are great, tho the problem I have is the uploading site customtones.com When you buy this unit it has preset tones and you can only change out 124 tone boxes in the user presets section (has to be done with the vyzex software) and on the customtones website there are for some really stupid reason many many many of the EXACT SAME TONE and have been uploaded multiple times for some reason which makes absoltely no sense. Then you can go through the hassle of downloading them and then trying to upload them and play them and the sounds don't work at all. It's like someone uploaded a completely blank tone and it doesn't play anything. So picking and choosing through the tones to find which ones work from the customtones.com website to add to your Pocket POD can oftentimes be hit and miss.
Overall Impression — 8
This matches well with my style, all it takes is to go and download the tones you want and you're set! I wanted this product for a while and did Tons Of Research on forums, reading product reviews and facts about tone selection and quality of the product and ease of use to make sure this was something I could use easilly and not need to put too much effort into. I agree this item works wekk and does what it is supposed to, tho the software is the only problem and its ease of use for the software is a bit confusing (there is a whole forum for those with questions and problems run by those Who work for Line 6) But once you get used to it, it's not that bad. What I love are the ease of tones at the palm of your hand, once you get what you want in there the selection is amazing! I hate the fact the battery life is bad so I had to get the ac adapter, and I wish the screen were larger to show more info and perhaps a list view instead of only being able to see 1 tone at a time so you don't know what tones are coming up ahead unless you memorize them. There is nothing that compares to this product in this price range. It does amazing things for a cheap price and you will love the product! I could not afford $300+ for the larger (non portable) pods, so this is small and portable and does tons of things for a great price.
Reliability & Durability — 7
I feel I can depend on it, the unit is great, but the software can be confusing and the tone website for downloading can be a real hit and miss situation for good tones and ones that don't work at all. I would certainly use this at a gig as you can Switch to a new preset tone very fast and that would be awesome for being at a gig! An issue is durability. It's portable, but the problem is the plastic feet are slippery and it can slide across the table and fall onto the floor making a loud plastic crash sound. So I question whether this can hold up well if dropped at all. What Line 6 NEEDS to to is add testired feet to the bottom for those using it on a slippery table, but for hiooking it to your belt/pants this works well.
Ease of Use — 5
Getting good sound out of it is really easy if you use the preset tones. I am yet to try and mess with the silver knobs on the front as the preset tones are setup nicely and don't need to be messed with. Editing things is definately a pain as you have to use a software program. I got used to it after a while but it took me time to download and even go on a forum to find out how to do/work certain things so the ease of use could be better. There is a manual but its tiny and just explains the basics, if you do some internet searching there are better manuals from the Line 6 site you can print up. As for upgraded firmware, I am not sure if mine is upgraded but I have no play/use issues.