ToneCore Echo Park review by Line 6

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  • Sound: 6
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Ease of Use: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7.5 Good
  • Users' score: 7.3 (34 votes)
Line 6: ToneCore Echo Park
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Price paid: $ 226.8

Purchased from: Local Music Store

Sound — 6
Currently I stopped using this effect since my whole stompbox rig has been replace by a PODXT Live, but at the time my rig was an EMG loaded Ibanez SZ or SC going to a pedalboard with a Boss Noise supressor, the Echo Park, a MXR Phase 90, an Ibanez LF7 and a Marshall JCM2000. Ok now let's start about noise which was a major issue, the bottomline is that I have never played another pedal that is so picky when it comes to power supply. Of course Digital Delay pedals suck a lot of power removing right away from your options a battery that will die in a couple of hours, so the most logical step is an ac adaptor. Initially I plugged it in the place of my previous delay pedal which was attached to an Ibanez 5 way splitter, the pedal worked but it produced an annoying fuzz sound even when it was off and on a low amp level (I never tried to see how bad it sounded on my normal stage volume). Then I replaced the splitter with different ac adaptorsi had at home (two unknown brand ones bought at an electronics store, a DigiTech one and an Ibanez one). The problem persisted so I brought it to a guitar store where the only ac adaptors working where the Boss one and the original Line 6 one, despite they brought out the same type of energy all other adapters bring. This problem also appeared in all other Tonecores we tried with the exception of the distortion ones. I contacted Line 6 and they replied they are aware of this and suggest the use of batteries, Boss or Line 6 ac adaptors and if I want a splitter setup I should get a Voodoo Labs power source. Personally I found this was a major downside considering that, with the exception of the batteries, all other options where rather costly and this was by no means a cheap pedal. As for the sound once the problem was solved, it was great like every current generation Line 6 effect. The different options you get from the choice of delay (analog, digital or tape) to the sound presets (sweep, revers, ping pong, swell) allow you to get the perfect sound you want, with options that you normaly don't find in a single stompbox but in the more complex units. Plus there was a really innovative feature called Trails that made the effect fade out instead of turning off abruptly. Too bad there was that power supply problem, because this could have been the ultimate Delay pedal.

Overall Impression — 7
I normaly use delay pedals in a gothic rock band and this pedal definitely was an important part of the sound. For the year I used it live and in studio it worked great once it's problems had been figured out. In case it would get stolen or it would die I think I would consider buying it again for studio work where I still use it a lot, but if I had to put it back in my Live rig I probably would look elsewhere because it was too much of a pain in the ass between the power and tap tempo issues. The only advice I can give is before you buy, try it with your rig and see how it feels. If you don't find any probles get it, it's the best sounding delay you can find in the category of compact pedals. If you see problems just look elsewhere, there is no poind in spending so much money on a pedal and then have to spend more on expensive power supplies.

Reliability & Durability — 10
Considering that this pedal needs to get kicked in order to work, because of that tap tempo issue, it's built like a tank. Of course I used it Live for a single year before upgrading my rig to a PODXT, too little if compared to the 6 year ordeal my previous delay pedal (an Ibanez DE7) had to go through, but it bears no signs of abuse. Not surprising after all since it weights a ton compared to the average pedal, but this is not a problem when it adds to the durability of it. I would definitely rely on it and even if I always like to have a spare, I'd be surprised to see this die on me.

Ease of Use — 7
From the various Tonecore pedals I tried this was definitely the easiest to set up right away if you have a minimum experience with delay stompboxes, sure it has too many knobs like every other pedal of this series but at least half of those are meant just for some fine tuning rather than extreme tonal changes. Plus those extra knobs are all well explained in the instruction manual that, despite being basic, covers all the main topics for this pedal. The only downside I found to this pedal was the tap tempo function. I admit I don't normaly use it at all, but while with other stompboxes like the ones made by Boss it never got in the way, in this case it was a bit annoying. Basicaly to turn on or off the effect you have to hit it quite hard (a lot harder that what I usually do with other pedals) and if you don't hit that hard it reads your command as a tempo change. During rehears where I don't normaly wear heavy boots it was a pain in the ass.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    GitterMan
    This is a great delay. In fact Line 6 is pretty specific about using a Line 6 adapter. Trust me it is worth the money and will solve all your problems. Used mine with a no name PWR adapter and fried my echo park. Luckily line 6 sent me another one within a week. their are many great feature such as ducking that will allow you to riff without repeats and the repeats come in during lead lines. tap tempo is easy just tap on the main on /off switch to set tempo stomp to turn on or off
    Weepin_Guitar
    I have a question, the line 6 site says that the tonecore pedals aren't 100% bypass, but all the pedals seem great, so would you still have a good sound when you use multiple of them ( let's say more than 5)????