• Amazon: Line 6 POD XT Live
• Pros: Great authentic sounds and superb versatility make the XT Live an exceptional floorboard modeler.
• Cons: Any chance of making it a bit smaller or even a little lighter, guys?
• Overall: Everything the gigging guitarist could ever need in a floorboard.
Coming from the company that made the groundbreaking POD, the Pod XT Live is a natural progression from the classic kidney bean unit to a floorboard unit, while removing the need for a separate floor controller along the way. Mind you, what we’re left with is still a fairly hefty device and probably as heavy as most practice amps. But, for what you get for your money, it’s very much worth it.
Ready to Rock?
Basic editing is straightforward enough with the XT Live. Learning to control some of the board’s features, however, such as those involving the output mode, was a bit more difficult. Having said that, the XT Live is pretty much ‘plug and play’. The onboard presets didn’t immediately awe us, but it took very little tweaking to get them working nicely through a valve-laden Laney combo.
Once we got used to the interface, we focused on getting some real nice tones out of this beast and it did little wrong. The amp modeling was superb with each model coming across with its own identity and surprisingly close to the real thing, especially when using a valve amp. In fact, we could barely tell the difference between the tweaked amp models on the XT Live and the real thing. Although once we went direct to mixer, you could hear the digital aspect kicking in. Mind you, in is a live setting, this shouldn’t be much of an issue to anyone apart from the pickiest guitarist.
Tone quality is superb and there is a huge amount of versatility in both the effects and the EQing of those effects. From country and western to metal and everything in between, there is something for everyone. Combined with the Line 6 Edit software and a computer, as well as one on Line 6’s guitar software packages such as Pod Farm, the ease of manipulating patches and creating sounds is simply incredible. And just to make it even easier, there’s an online library of downloadable tones created by Pod XT enthusiasts to enhance your own presets.
If there were one negative thing we could say about the XT Live, it would be that there simply aren’t enough blank patches to save all your presets on. That’s a pity because once you start creating presets on this; you won’t want to delete them!
Hard to Beat
Quite simply, this is another world-class floorboard from the company that, arguably, began digital remodeling. A lot of thought has gone into the XT Live in order to differentiate the unit from all the copycat modelers out there and it has paid huge dividends for Line 6. The XT Live is the jewel in their crown. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more versatile, professional sounding unit anywhere.