Can Line 6 answer the AxeFX and ElevenRack?

Discussion in 'Digital & Modeling Gear' started by Craig Allen, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. Craig Allen

    Craig Allen Member

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    I have a PODxt that I use for practice and it sounds fairly decent. But that modeling technology is now several years old and Fractal and Digidesign have come out with these two rackmounted products that absolutely kill anything Line 6 puts out. It has been a few years since the POD X3 dropped, and I find myself wondering if Line 6 is about to introduce some new and hardcore modeling technology onto the market as their answer to the AxeFX and ElevenRack. Anyone care to share any inside information on this?
     
  2. ElDiabloBlanco

    ElDiabloBlanco Member

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    I believe some new stuff is coming shortly from Line 6 that is supposed to be a big upgrade from the current modelers but still at that kind of price point - just sayin'!
    I as well would be interested in some inside info....
     
  3. mtmartin71

    mtmartin71 Silver Supporting Member

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    There have been hints of something on the horizon. To the previous point, it's questionable what they can do at their preferred price point. From a market standpoint, they seem to have sunk everything into the $700 and under club and most stuff around $300-400. They are the best marketers for sure. They do make you think you can spend $300-400 and get what the other are offering.
     
  4. dspellman

    dspellman Senior Member

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    It's more than possible for Line 6 (and for virtually any larger manufacturer) to cover both the 11R and the Axe-FX with a virtually identical unit (or better) at Line 6's price point; there's little in the actual electronics package that would produce problems with that, and given the Line 6 volume, little in the R&D process that would cause issues. Worth noting that the models in the XT have been around for a pretty long production run and they haven't changed in the X3 (the X3 adds other features, but the models themselves remain the same as in the XT).

    Having spend a few hours at Line 6 in the last few weeks and having seen a few things I shouldn't have, all I can tell you is to ask Rich Renken.
     
  5. mtmartin71

    mtmartin71 Silver Supporting Member

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    I've seen Rich make mention of cool stuff in the pipeline. If they give me the Axe or 11R in a $600 package, I'm all for it. Competition is great. Right now though, they are lagging behind by most people's standards.
     
  6. dspellman

    dspellman Senior Member

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    *mmmmmMMMMMmph...*
     
  7. Pietro

    Pietro 2-Voice Guitar Junkie Silver Supporting Member

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    They're probably not lagging sales-wise... Although I am delighted enough with my X3Live and my M13 that I will probably need to set aside some dough to pick up the X4Live or whatever...
     
  8. travisvwright

    travisvwright Supporting Member

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    Wait slowdown. I haven't even figure out my X3 yet.
     
  9. octatonic

    octatonic Member

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    Given their history of using cheap parts and converters I doubt it.
    I'd owned a bunch of Line 6 gear over the years (POD PRO XT, Echo Pro, DL4, Guitar Port) and tried a lot more.
    The only one I can live with is the Echo Pro which they discontinued.
     
  10. Electric I

    Electric I Supporting Member

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    I hope so & it's about time all the bigger companies stepped up their game.

    Looking forward to see what's announced at winter namm.
     
  11. hobbes1

    hobbes1 Member

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    trying to pull gag off of "dspellman".....let it out man, don't hurt yourself!
    :D
     
  12. shasha

    shasha Member

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    The only thing that I'll say is that the highend processors like the TigerSHARC are still pretty pricey and considered overkill for a lot of the companies out there.

    There's little doubt that they could make something that is even better than what is out there IMHO.

    But every single time a major manufacturer steps up to the plate it seems that they end up scaling back on cost of components in order to increase profit margin. And lifecycle isn't something that any of them ever seem to want to improve upon meaning that they don't want to put themselves out of business by building the end all be all box. There's just little incentive to provide a product that will never need to be replaced with a newer model.

    It's a balancing act and there is a sweet spot for each target market. For $600 I just don't see them using the best available components on the planet and making the money they want per unit.
     
  13. lafours

    lafours Member

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    I hope so..

    Line 6 has it over everybody in Computer integration, GUI, editors, and the physical form and interface..
     
  14. KHAN

    KHAN Member

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    The only things in Line6's way to produce an Axe-FX quality box are:

    • High end processor.
    • Pro audio quality analog components.
    • Pro audio quality converters.
    • Cliff's brain.



    Other than that though, they're golden...:rotflmao
     
  15. NuSkoolTone

    NuSkoolTone Member

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    What's nice is the 11R and Axe-FX set a bar at their given price points. It also puts a ceiling on what Line6 can charge and still be in the game. ToneLab IMO has the lower end covered for under $300 AFAIK. So that leaves L6 between $300-800 to carve out a niche. Too close to the higher end and people will go for the 11R. If they don't shoot high enough on the lower end, they might not get the sale.

    I'd be willing to bet that L6 has some amazing stuff locked up behind it's doors. It's a matter of what's economically viable to meet their profit margins. They may very well have algorithms that are comparable to the better units that require expensive hardware to run. We'll just have to see what they let out the door! Conversely, if it's amazing and meets a low price point, it could put downward pressure on pricing of the better units or accelerate updates. These things tend to leapfrog each other.
     
  16. BadMelonFarmer

    BadMelonFarmer Gold Supporting Member

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    Will be interesting to see what they do next.

    They serm to be getting a bit of their mojo back in certain areas and I hope that spills over into other areas.

    The m13 and m9 have been very popular and critical successes, BUT you are still dealing with price compromises.

    I have no doubt they will get to the axe-fx feel, but it will take more than a couple of years.

    If you look purely at cost of the components the axe-fx is still way too high for a line6 level / mass Market product. Of course this will change and it will filter down, but by that time the high will move on and be more impressive.

    Look at a executive car from 20 years ago and all those flashy gizmos are standard in the entry level cars these days. But there are newer gizmos in the exec cars now.

    Technology moves faster than that.... That is why I love it, always exciting.

    I am just blown away with the sounds you can get out of a spider jam amp, for the money it is amazing. I would have given anything to get those sounds in the 80s!

    Then I play my Axe-FX and it it just crazy, I always get people asking what the hell is going on and where are the sounds coming from.

    I CAN NOT wait to see how this all evolves in the next few years, bring it on!

    Cheers

    BMF
     
  17. Don Petersen

    Don Petersen Member

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    L6 has a big share of the market and heavy competition from DigiTech and Zoom, I seriously doubt they'll be aiming for the high-end part of the market, since they tend to cut costs with lower quality components. AFAIK one or two of their dev team even left the company a while ago (Damage Control).

    As soon as marketing becomes a factor, the product suffers - sure, the editor might have the 'prettier' GUI (although I love the no nonsense look of AxeEdit), more coverage in all the magazines, dedicated distributors, but none of the L6 products (and I've owned a bunch of them and still do) have the same dedication as the Axe.

    The only company I can compare them (Fractal) to is Manley - insanely over the top specs with no weak links. Considering that, I am extremely thankful to be able to purchase something as close to perfection as the Axe-Fx for the amount of money they ask for.

    The big companies have a hard time concentrating on one single product, that's Cliff's advantage: one guy, one vision, one product.

    can't beat that.
     
  18. BadMelonFarmer

    BadMelonFarmer Gold Supporting Member

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    Yup, I agree.

    when you have someone like Cliff driving a product it is great, once they get bored and sell the company off to a competitor it will go down hill rapidly.

    The new owner does not have an interest in the quality only the name, reputation and intellectually property, cut corners and costs ... maximise profits.

    Not saying Cliff WILL, but from a business perspective that is the "thing" to do.... build your product from scratch with a unique selling point and a market share....then sell it on to someone who sees that they can take it further and not always in a good way..... referred to as the "Exit Strategy".... I am not saying that this is the right thing to do.... just what a lot of them do.
     
  19. BadMelonFarmer

    BadMelonFarmer Gold Supporting Member

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    should add....

    I really hope that Cliff does NOT do this.

    Perhaps I am just too cynical these days
     
  20. mtmartin71

    mtmartin71 Silver Supporting Member

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    This is why I don't want Fractal to expand much. If they do, then they'll have the same issues of multiple product lines, compatibility testing, etc. Without a doubt, Fractal's biggest advantage is the speed at which they have improved their product, all for the price of entry. No other company has come close. The product has essentially been the FW. If you could afford the entry point, it's as if you've got the POD, POD XT, and POD X3 equivalent in evolution over the course of free FW upgrades. Actually, I would prefer a more modular approach such as the one Line6 offers but with the quality and guts of the AxeFX.
     

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